Leftovers is our look at a few of the product ideas popping up everywhere. Some are intriguing, some sound amazing and some are the kinds of ideas we would never dream of. We can’t write about everything that we get pitched, so here are some leftovers pulled from our inboxes.
Kellogg is making the winter months super sweet
As temperatures drop, Kellogg is making mornings sweeter.
The cereal manufacturer is adding two new items to its lineup to sweeten mornings and snack time. Kellogg’s Krave is adding a new flavor to its breakfast lineup: Double Chocolate Brownie Batter. And for snack time, Kellogg has incorporated marshmallows into its Froot Loops Jumbo Snax pouches.
"Whether parents or kids find themselves in the mood for something sweet and chocolatey or crave something fruity and crunchy, Kellogg's Krave Double Chocolate Brownie Batter Cereal and Kellogg's Froot Loops with Marshmallows Jumbo Snax are the perfect treat," Laura Newman, senior director of brand marketing at Kellogg, said in a statement.
Krave has always been an indulgent cereal targeted at chocoholics, with a crisp outside and chocolate filling inside. It’s not necessarily unexpected that Kellogg found a way to make it more chocolatey. The new launch is all chocolate, featuring a chocolate outer layer with filling that tastes like brownie batter.
Marshmallows mixed into Froot Loops Jumbo Snax — which are larger pieces of the trademark Technicolor fruity Os intended to be eaten after breakfast — takes the sweetness up a few notches.
These new launches follow a recent pattern in the cereal space: Making morning offerings more indulgent. In recent years, a grocery store’s cereal aisle could easily be mistaken for its dessert section as products such as Little Debbie snack cakes, Hostess treats, Sour Patch Kids, Funfetti cake and Peeps crowd the shelves.
Executives and analysts have said the jolt of sugar is a strategy cereal companies are using to get consumers to buy more of it. But as consumers are paying more attention to labels to find food that is better for them, are cereal offerings bringing too much sweetness to the breakfast table? A bowl of the new Krave variety has 24 grams of added sugar — 28% of the recommended daily amount. The top two ingredients for the cereal are chocolate flavored filling — with sugar as its first ingredient — and sugar.
According to a report last year from FONA International, half of consumers 24 and older are trying to reduce their overall sugar intake. And while they are likely not the target consumers for the new Kellogg offerings, that demographic likely represents their parents. While children are likely to love anything with more chocolate and more marshmallows, their parents will have to decide how much sugar is too much.
Craft beer maker teas up new brews
Can’t decide between a beer and a cup of tea? Now you don’t have to.
Stony Creek Brewery is partnering with Bigelow Tea on new tea-infused beers. These new creations, named No Comment and Carpe Tea-em, mark the first-ever beer collaboration between the two Connecticut-based businesses.
No Comment, a drinkable German-style lager, has an infusion of Bigelow’s “Constant Comment” — a blend of black tea, orange peel and sweet spices. Carpe Tea-em, a Hefeweizen, has the aroma and flavor of bright citrus bergamot fruit delivered by Bigelow’s Earl Grey Tea.
To infuse the tea, the unfermented beer is brought to a boil before the hops are added, creating the ideal time to steep the tea, the companies said. The tea is then brewed directly into the beer.
“Partnering with Stony Creek Brewery provides an opportunity to think beyond our core business,” Cindi Bigelow, third-generation president and CEO of Bigelow Tea, said in a statement. “We look forward to where this partnership takes us in the years to come.”
Craft beer has proven to be a popular channel for using unconventional ingredients such as Bigelow’s storied tea. With more than 9,000 craft breweries, nearly double the total of seven years ago, according to the Brewers Association, creativity is vital for standing out.
Oskar Blues partnered with French’s Mustard to create French’s Mustard Beer, brewed with the classic yellow condiment. And Harpoon Brewery and Dunkin’ launched their own donut-infused beers with Harpoon Dunkin’ Pumpkin Spiced Latte Ale, Boston Kreme Stout and Jelly Donut IPA.
— Christopher Doering
GrownAs* Foods emerges with dairy-free mac and cheese
GrownAs* Foods, a vegan foods brand that launched this year, has debuted a line of mac and cheese. The product ingredients include potato and coconut flour, nutritional yeast and smoked paprika.
The brand touted the mac and cheese’s better-for-you elements in a press release, featuring 10 grams of protein per serving. It is available in two flavors, Classic and Truffle. The product is sold in two-box bundles on the brand’s website for $12 to $16. It can also be found on Amazon and at select grocery stores.
GrownAs* Foods said the product’s box is recyclable and the pouch is 100% compostable.
"I've been vegan for over five years and never found a mac and cheese that I enjoyed, or that my children would eat,” GrownAs* Foods’ founder and CEO David Delcourt said in a statement. “We kept imagining mac and cheese that everyone at the table could dig into, so we created it from scratch.”
GrownAs* Foods is a subsidiary of hot sauce maker Seed Ranch Flavor Co. Besides mac and cheese, the brand also sells vegan cheese powder.
Other new entrants in the mac and cheese category are aiming to adapt the dish to modern — and adult — consumers who increasingly care about the health and sustainability benefits of the food they purchase. Goodles, which debuted in 2021, features a variety of plant-based ingredients in its mac and cheese, from mushrooms to kale to pumpkin. It launched a vegan variety, which contains 12 grams of protein per serving.
Plant-based alternatives to the dinner staple are becoming more prominent, with brands like Annie’s finding success with options that eschew diary. Category leader Kraft debuted a vegan version of its signature Mac & Cheese in Australia in 2021.
— Chris Casey