Whole, piece, flour and other nut and seed ingredients, including almonds, pecans, walnuts, pistachios, hazelnuts and other tree nuts; flax, hemp, chia, sesame and other seeds; peanuts; and nut substitutes or analogues.
While a wider range of nut and seed butters have enjoyed an ascent in popularity over the past few years, riding the wave of peanut butter’s perennial popularity, they’ve only recently begun to see wider use as a typifying ingredient in snack and bakery applications, including cookies.
In a retail landscape that demands that snacks and baked goods have it all—great taste, affordable pricing, innovative flavors, recognizable ingredients and boosted nutrition—one category in particular is rising to the challenge: cookies.
The current plant-based protein trend is directly in line with public health findings, including recommendations to increase intake of nuts to improve overall diet quality. Nuts and seeds contribute dietary nutrition, as well as adding flavor, visual interest and texture to snacks and baked goods.
Bread is the largest category in the baking industry, and as such, faces continual challenges related to incremental growth. While legacy brands continue to perform well, the fresh bread, bagel and English muffin categories remained largely flat to slightly down over the past year.
In a report released last year, market research firm Euromonitor International examined the meal replacement segment, including snack and nutritional bars. What they found was that the space is in a state of transformation.
Usage of the term “better-for-you” can be confusing for some, but generally it means taking traditional foods—including many snacks and baked goods that are normally thought of as indulgent, like cookies and sweets—and improving them nutritionally, including cleaning up the label. This can largely be accomplished through ingredient selection.