The Student News Site of Shawnee Mission Northwest


The Student News Site of Shawnee Mission Northwest


The Student News Site of Shawnee Mission Northwest


Whole Diets

Many of us take for granted our ability to eat whatever we please. If we want ice cream, we eat ice cream, if we want pasta, we eat pasta, but for the four percent of the US population who have food allergies, this isn’t always an option.

Whether you’re lactose intolerant, have celiac disease (gluten intolerant) or just eat a restricting diet, companies are now trying to gear products to all people’s food requirements. Some of these foods are more expensive than teenagers can afford, but if you know where to look you can find tasty and cheap specialty foods.

All of the products at Whole Foods are unique in some way, and more often than not they are better for you (and better tasting) than mainstream groceries.


Chocolate Cake — $5.39 For a dessert made without eggs, milk and cholesterol, Amy’s Organic Chocolate Cake was amazing. Not only was it lactose/dairy free, kosher and vegan, it was also dense, moist and rich. Because it was kept in the freezer section, it had a gooey texture surrounding the outside, but that only made this cake better. Being vegan is not a difficult task if desserts this great are possible.

Nutrition Bars — $1.67 Not nearly as tasty as the other vegan foods, Probar’s Fruition Cran-Raspberry bars were a bit too firm and a tad too boring. After the second bite, the cranberry flavor became more apparent, but the majority of the bar was extremely bland. I could tell I was eating something healthy, as opposed to enjoying something delicious that had the added benefit of nutritional value. As far as meal replacement health bars go, these were decent. They truly did keep me full for awhile, but I can’t say I particularly cared one way or the other about eating them. They were just food: not bad, not good, just edible.

Chips and Guacamole — $8.06 Unlike most store bought guacamole, Whole Food’s house brand tasted fresh and light. Although not as salty and spicy as some like, it tasted homemade. The texture was creamy, the flavor was zesty and the mound of salsa on top was the perfect balance of tang and spice. I loved this guacamole, but some might find it lacking. It’s not hot in the least, but if you’re looking for something garden fresh, it’s your go-to guac. Garden of Eatin’s Mini Corn Yellow Rounds, on the other hand, tasted like cardboard. They had no real flavor of their own, but they had a great crunch. They made great dipping chips because they were unable to overpower the guacamole and salsa, but there was nothing special about them.


Meringue Drops — $4.99 Honestly, Whole Food’s 365 vanilla meringue cookies were sub-par at best. Hard, dry and entirely too sugary, they were not a dessert most people would enjoy. Eating one tasted similar to sugar cubes made for tea, and they had about the same texture. They were totally lacking in the light, airy texture associated with a good meringue, and instead were hard and brittle. Even though I bought the vanilla flavor, the only thing I could taste was sugar. That maybe the only adjective that can be used to describe this candy. If you are a meringue fanatic, these could be delicious, but if you don’t like sweet things, stay away.

Granola Bars — $3.99 The first thing I noticed about Enjoy Life’s Very Berry snack bars were how tiny they were. With only five very small bars to a box, you don’t notice until opening the package that you’ve been tricked. The bars themselves, other than being minuscule, are extremely dense and chewy. I like chewy granola bars, so I thought the texture was amazing, but some people prefer more biting and less gnawing. The raspberry flavor was apparent, as well as the oat taste, but they went well together; instead of one flavor dominating the other, they were nicely balanced. Like most granola bars, they are the perfect breakfast food: easy to grab on the go, filling and relatively tasty.

Gluten-Free Pizza — $4.69 Glutino’s Duo Cheese Pizza may be a frozen pizza, but because of the delicious ingredients and perfect portions, it’s the best frozen pizza money can buy. The corn-based crust burns slightly around the edges while in the oven and turns a beautiful shade of golden brown everywhere else. Zesty basil and garlic tomato sauce oozes out from beneath beautifully melted mozzarella and monterey jack cheeses. Gluten-free, extremely high quality and only $4.69, Glutino made an amazing cheese pizza.


Soy Ice Cream — $3.39 I never expected to like dairy-free ice cream: It just isn’t possible to make a good milk-free dessert, right? Soy Dream’s green tea-flavored rice ice cream proved me wrong. Although a strange flavor, the texture was amazingly smooth and icy, similar to a high-class sorbet. Green tea was interestingly tasting, exactly like frozen TAZO, but all I could picture was the Princess Diaries while eating it. It’s a palate cleanser, and a freezing one at that. With some fresh fruit it would be delicious, but on its own, it’s a bit like an after-dinner mint. There are other flavors by Soy Dream, which I imagine are more like a treat on their own. But if you want to try something new and unique, maybe green tea is your best bet.

Lactose free yogurt — $1.00 Green Valley’s lactose and gluten-free organic yogurt is extremely similar to average Greek yogurt: more bitter than sweet, a little sour and extremely thick. Strawberry was probably a little too safe a bet for such a unique dairy product, but I enjoyed it. It wasn’t overly exciting, but yogurt isn’t supposed to be: Yogurt is a comfort food. Green Valley’s yogurt is top of the line for lactose intolerant individuals.

Hayley Battenberg
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Whole Diets