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.
Stouffer's brings new pasta-bilities to cocktails
‘Tis the season to be saucy.
Nestlé jumped into the cocktail mixer space this week with Stouffer’s Lasagna Inspired Bloody Mary Mix. The company says it gives consumers “a bold and savory cocktail mixer bringing the comforting taste of Stouffer’s classic lasagna sauce to the glass.”
Consumers can make frozen meal-inspired cocktails by combining the mixer with their spirit of choice and favorite garnish.
“Does lasagna fit on a toothpick?” the company asks.
Approximately 120 bottles of Stouffer’s Lasagna Inspired Bloody Mary Mix were available online for free. The kits, which also included a recipe card and coupon for a Stouffer’s product, quickly sold out.
“For decades, Stouffer’s Lasagna has had a special place at holiday tables,” Megan McLaughlin, brand marketing manager for Stouffer’s, said in a statement. “This season, we created a new way for our fans to enjoy the same classic Stouffer’s Lasagna taste without turning on the oven.”
Stouffer’s, which also has offerings such as Salisbury steak and meatloaf, was the top selling single-serve frozen dinner brand in the U.S. in the 12 weeks ending Feb, 21, 2021, according to Statista. The brand generated sales topping $171 million.
The popular Nestlé brand has had other unique product offerings. Last summer, Nestlé created Stouffer’s LasagnaMac, featuring a layer of macaroni and cheese in the lasagna. It also has sold branded merchandise, including a Lasagna Onesie.
— Christopher Doering
Spam brings the US some figgy pudding
What is figgy pudding, exactly?
The end of the classic holiday carol “We Wish You A Merry Christmas” has verses dedicated to demanding a serving of the traditional British holiday dessert. However, most people on this side of the Atlantic Ocean don’t know what it is. A recent OnePoll survey of 2,000 consumers found seven in 10 have at least heard of the dessert, but only 17% had tried it.
Hormel Foods is trying to change that with a special seasonal product. This year, figgy pudding is made out of Spam. The canned meat brand is launching a variety it touts as “Flavor, spice & everything nice.” It features cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, allspice and cloves, as well as fig and orange flavor profiles. A release on the product calls it “the perfect addition to sacred family recipes or tasty new traditions.”
Hormel’s polarizing canned meat product was first launched in 1937 at the height of the Great Depression, when it was dubbed a “miracle meat.” It quickly became a favorite around the globe — and a favorite product to despise. Spam has both superfans and haters, but for better or for worse, it’s maintained constant sales for 85 years. In 2019, Hormel estimated 12.8 cans of Spam were consumed every second around the world.
So why not give it a special holiday flavor? After all, Spam has decked its halls with seasonal products before. In the fall of 2019, the brand launched a pumpkin spice-flavored version. Reviews of the autumn-themed variety said the flavors were subtle, but actually very tasty.
Regardless of how Spam Figgy Pudding tastes, the flavor is likely to be a hit. Figgy Pudding is a food that many people have holiday nostalgia for — but have never tasted. Spam’s version is unlikely to be compared to the actual dessert, and for many consumers, it will stand on its own as a holiday eating experience.
Actual figgy pudding is a cake that is heavy on dried figs and dates. At the very least, it’s likely as filling as Spam. While Spam Figgy Pudding is only available online at Spam.com, Amazon and Walmart.com, it’s still easier to get and serve in the U.S. than the traditional dessert. Just one question remains: Will serving Spam Figgy Pudding to carolers this holiday season be a treat for them, or will it drive them away from your home for good?
— Megan Poinski
Stuffed Puffs take a Cinnamon Toast Crunch twist
Marshmallow brand Stuffed Puffs has a new snack collaboration: Big Bites Cinnamon Toast Crunch Filled Marshmallows. The item is available exclusively at Walmart.
The brand said it harnessed the flavor of the popular General Mills breakfast food by coating a marshmallow in cereal crumbles and adding a creme filling.
“We've taken the best part of eating cereal, the awesome Cinnamilk at the bottom of the bowl, packed that flavor into the center of a Stuffed Puffs, and coated them with crunchy crushed Cinnamon Toast Crunch," Stuffed Puffs founder and CEO Mike Tierney said in a statement.
Stuffed Puffs is used to bringing new ideas to the marshmallow space. It debuted in 2019 with marshmallows filled with milk chocolate. Then in 2021 the brand launched its first Stuffed Puffs Big Bites products in order to make a more easily snackable marshmallow treat without the hassle of a campfire. The product line debuted with Cookies ‘n Crème, S’mores and Birthday Cake flavors.
General Mills has licensed Cinnamon Toast Crunch to appear in a wide range of CPG foods, making it one of the most prominent flavors in collaborative products. The cereal’s flavor and essence can be found in products including popcorn, Swiss Miss hot chocolate, coffee creamer and Betty Crocker baking mixes. Its presence in the snacks space also grew this year with the launch of the spicy CinnaFuego Toast Crunch, which is packaged as a snack product but can also be eaten as a cereal.
— Chris Casey