Reviewed by Melody Floyde
As it’s nearly the end of October, we’re approaching Halloween when usually, in a non-Covid world, children would be having parties and going out trick or treating with their friends. I was asked to review Zenb veggie bites to see how they would measure up as potential Halloween Snacks. Usually children are trying to collect as many sweets as possible so I was interested to see if these healthy whole vegetable products would make a good alternative and more importantly meet my children’s approval.
I had never heard of Zenb before so was interested to see what it was all about. From a quick look on their website I could see that the strap line for Zenb is “food, rediscovered”. The name comes from “Zenbu” which is the Japanese expression for whole. The idea behind Zenb veggie food is to use more of whole plants from peel to core, stem to seed in their ingredients, and this in turn leads to preserving taste and also making people aware of food waste.
From all this I could tell that Zenb products are very healthy. They are high in fibre, plant based, gluten free, non-GMO with no artificial flavours or preservatives. They are also certified organic by the soil association. They come in two types, veggie bites and veggie sticks which can be ordered from their website as either multi-packs of the same product, or mixed packs. Prices range from £17.50 for 5 packets of veggie bites to £50.00 for 15 packets. You can also set it up to receive a regular order.
I was sent a box full of Veggie Bites to try. The box contained two packets of each of the five flavours, these being: Pumpkin, Apple and Cacao Nibs (these sounded like they had the most potential to be good Halloween snacks, as you can’t have Halloween without pumpkin!); Beetroot, Orange and Cacao; Carrot, Pineapple and Coriander; Sweet Potato, Mango and Cinnamon and Red Pepper, Tomato and Ancho Chilli. The packs all contained 43g of veggie bites and were resealable which was handy for storing partially opened packs.
The box they came in was plain but elegant, I was glad to see that it was fully recyclable and printed with vegetable inks. However, the packets that the bites come in are not yet recyclable. I was also very impressed that the card that came in the box was made with Wildflower Seed Paper which I had never heard of before. Essentially the paper can be used to grow wildflowers if you soak it and plant it in soil – such a great idea!
The veggie bites themselves are essentially small cubes of vegetables mixed with syrup and nuts. They did look like they would be tasty and the flavours all sounded delicious so we couldn’t wait to try them. Unfortunately, after having tried all of the flavours, we found that they really weren’t to our taste at all which was so disappointing as we had high expectations for them and I’m sure many people would love them. Perhaps they were just too healthy for us! As for being a potential Halloween snack we thought that whilst they may not be treats for some children, they would definitely make a good trick for some! I think my children will be sticking to sweets this year.
Overall whilst we didn’t enjoy the veggie bites, we really do like the ethos of Zenb and what they are trying to do and would be interested to see what other products they make in the future.
RRP: £17.50 for 5 packs, £50.00 for 15 packs
This product can be purchased from Zenb here