KANSAS CITY — Bread and savory baked snacks often are more restrained by form than sweet baked goods. There are only so many ways one can shape a loaf or stamp out a cracker. Many innovations in these categories, therefore, rely on flavor and function in order to stand out. An exception to this generally accepted rule was launched from General Mills this spring under its Nature Valley granola bar brand: the typically sweet snack took a savory turn with the debut of everything bagel, white cheddar and smoky barbecue flavored bars.
The “everything seasoning” trend remains as strong as ever, with recent launches including tortillas and bagels from Angelic Bakehouse, mini bagels from Grupo Bimbo’s Thomas brand and Ritz crackers from Mondelez International, all “everything” flavored. The Kellogg Co. sought out more adventurous flavor innovations with its Pringles brand, launching Pringles Las Meras Meras Habaneras and Pringles Enchilada Adobada as summer LTOs.
Unique Snacks branched out and launched its first non-pretzel snack, the gluten-free “Puffzel,” in four savory flavors. AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc., meanwhile, continued to expand its new retail popcorn line, both in microwavable and ready-to-eat varieties.
Popcornopolis added new flavors to its Nearly Naked popcorn line, which is marketed as a low-calorie snack option. Low-carb snack brand Catalina Crunch debuted a limited-edition honey mustard crunch mix that totes high protein and fiber content. Plant-based marshmallow crème company, Funky Mello, dipped a toe in the salty snack arena with the launch of Funky Mello Dippsterz — a vegan marshmallow dip paired with FitJoy’s gluten-free pretzel sticks.
Bread products that leaned into a health-and-wellness emphasis included low-carb baking company BetterBrand, which expanded its bagel portfolio; Silver Hills Sprouted Bakery, with the launch of its Omegamazing bread; and new tortilla brand Rise & Puff, which debuted three flagship products, including organic and gluten-free tortillas.
Other companies chose to stick to the classics, expanding existing portfolios with revamped staples that support sustainability goals. La Brea Bakery introduced a plant-based brioche bun, which the company said has the same flavor and texture as the original. English muffin producer Stone & Skillet, LLC partnered with Upcycled Foods, Inc. (UP, Inc.) to launch the Super Grains English Muffin, made using UP, Inc.’s upcycled brewers’ grain ingredient, ReGrained SuperGrain+.