When Maris, who works on behalf of Starbucks, contacted me about sampling some new items, I jumped at the chance. You guys know how I love Starbucks!
You may have already heard that Starbucks is making some substantial changes to its line of food offerings this summer. The company is holding its food to a higher, tastier standard, reducing the number of ingredients, and using quality items like Oregon blueberries and Washington cherries to make the food more as nature intended. And, as of this morning, Starbucks’ new recipes contain:
- No artificial flavors
- No artificial trans fats
- No artificial dyes
- No high-fructose corn syrup
And if this isn’t cool enough, many of these changes were inspired by customer ideas through My Starbucks Idea. Customers wanted products with more natural ingredients, and Starbucks was more than happy to oblige. Don’t you just love it when companies actually listen?!?
Before my physical therapy appointment this morning, I met Maris at Starbucks to taste a bunch of the new items. After ordering our drinks (we both got iced coffees), she ordered a number of tasty treats for me to sample.
Blueberry Oat Bar: Totally delicious– and made with two types of organic blueberries that actually taste like real blueberries and not some weird blueberry, jelly-like filling. The oat crust makes the bar a wholesome treat– great for breakfast or dessert!
Reduced-Fat Cinnamon Swirl Coffee Cake: Omg, this was HEAVEN! The Reduced-Fat Cinnamon Swirl Coffee Cake isn’t a new product, but the recipe has been reformulated to be better for you and apparently taste way better! I typically don’t like “reduced-fat” baked goods– they always taste weird and fake to me– but, the Reduced-Fat Cinnamon Swirl Coffee Cake was moist, soft, and full of cinnamon flavor. Not at all artificial tasting!
Banana Walnut Bread: Loved this one, too! The new Banana Walnut Bread is nearly 30% real banana instead of artificial banana flavor like most mass-produced banana breads. This bread was super moist and banana-y.
Petite Vanilla Bean Scone: This is also not a new item, but the Petite Vanilla Bean Scones are delicious and perfect portion control when you want a sweet treat, but not a lot of calories.
Dark Cherry Parfait: I actually ate the Dark Cherry Parfait for lunch today. It was excellent– light, refreshing, and satisfying. The texture of the yogurt is smooth and creamy, and the coconut granola retains it crunchiness by being packaged in a smaller, removable plastic cup that is fitted into the top of the larger cup. The dark cherries on the bottom are fresh, juicy, and add lots of flavor to the parfait.
Greek Yogurt & Honey Parfait: I’m saving this parfait for lunch tomorrow, but I am super excited about the Greek yogurt variety!
What a way to start my morning! So many goodies!
Another cool product that I didn’t try, but worth mentioning is the Farmer’s Market Salad, which is a prepared salad with blue cheese, crunchy almonds, tart dried cranberries, and sweet apples piled on a bed of romaine lettuce with all-natural balsamic vinaigrette for just 220 calories (300 calories with dressing). I saw this salad at Starbucks this morning, and it really looked good– fresh and substantial. It would be a fantastic option for lunch if you are pressed for time and hungry!
Ok, so enough of my raving about Starbucks! I know I have a serious Starbucks problem, but I can’t help it!
For dinner tonight, I made myself a grilled veggie sandwich with zucchini and squash using our Griddler.
I placed my grilled veggies on top of two pieces of toasted hemp bread and melted a slice of cheddar cheese on it.
Check out those perfect grill lines!
On the side, I had some of the rice-beans-salsa mixture, which was leftover from last night’s dinner.
For dessert, I used the Griddler again to make some sweet plantain slices. I’m pretty sure using a Griddler is not the “authentic” way to cook plantains, but it worked really well!
How to: I heated the Griddler, coated it with non-stick cooking spray, laid-down the plantain slices, and sprinkled brown sugar and cinnamon on top of them. I grilled them for about 5 minutes until they were golden brown and slightly soft.
I topped the plantain slices with a squirt of agave nectar, sliced almonds, and raisins. It was an AWESOME dessert!
Everything Little Miss Winner
I’m so glad that you guys liked April’s cards! Aren’t they adorable?
Without further ado, here are your random numbers:
Oh my gosh, I love these! Totally my taste! Thanks for sharing her Etsy shop. The Love Birds and Don’t Forget to Make a Wish cards are adorable. And not cliche, which I love!
So cute! I’m a huge Etsy fan, so I love all homemade cards like this. My favorite product is the paper crane card.
Congrats, guys! Email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) with your mailing addresses.
I’m pooped after that marathon post! Good night!!!