There are a handful of universal traits that make certain foods feel extra-special: flavor (obviously), texture, sweetness, and crunch rank high.
Which is exactly why we’re so thrilled about our newest collection—Thrive Market organic nuts, seeds, dried fruits, and chocolate chips! All are totally organic, free of artificial additives and preservatives, and loaded with good-for-you vitamins and minerals. Enjoy them on their own as a snack, grab a few and make your own trail mix, or add to your favorite recipes.
Here we break down some of the nutrition highlights and ways to use a handful of our favorites—soon to be yours, too.
Nutrition cred: Almonds are an incredible way to keep hunger at bay because of their protein level (six grams per ounce), but that’s not all. They also have more calcium than any other nut, plus nearly nine grams of heart-healthy monounsaturated fats, and three and a half grams of fiber per ounce.
Little-known fact: Technically the hard-shelled fruit of the almond tree, almonds are actually members of the prunus—or peach!—family. At an almond family reunion, you’d also see cherries, plums, peaches, and nectarines.
Why we love them: They’re great alone for a tide-you-over snack or added to a number of recipes, from salads to sweets to almond-encrusted fish or poultry.
Nutrition cred: Cashews are packed with vitamins and minerals, including copper, manganese, phosphorus, and magnesium. All of these help the body fight free radicals, which are linked to cell breakdown and premature aging. Also inside: iron, potassium, zinc, and selenium.
Little-known fact: Cashews are actually seeds, not nuts, that grow on—you guessed it—cashew trees.
Why we love them: Buttery, rich, and flavorful, cashews are always a delight in any mixed-nut situation. Plus, they make delicious vegan cashew cheese or cashew chai milk.
Nutrition cred: In addition to being a great source of protein and fiber, walnuts provide healthy fats in the form of alpha-linoleic acid (ALA). Recent studies show that consuming ALA can help reduce the risk of heart disease and heart attacks, and potentially lower high blood pressure. Also, it’s been known to help strengthen bones.
Little-known fact: Walnuts have been revered since ancient times as a symbol of intellectualism, thanks to brain-like shape.
Why we love them: Because brownies, obviously.
Dark Chocolate Chips
Nutrition cred: Dark chocolate has been associated with improved vascular and cardiovascular health. Yay! Researchers aren’t sure exactly why, but it may have to do with how our digestive tracts process—and harness the power of—the antioxidants and fiber found in cocoa. Also, a review of 24 different studies revealed that regular consumption of dark chocolate helped lower blood pressure.
Little-known fact: Chocolate is the original energy drink. In the 1500s, Aztec Emperor Montezuma II said “A cup of this precious drink (cocoa) permits man to walk for a whole day without food.”
Why we love them: What’s not to love about chocolate? Aside from their great taste, we love how easy it is to toss these chips into a trail mix with your favorite nuts or bake them into brownies or cookies!
Nutrition cred: Famously known as a superfood, goji berries are loaded with beta-carotene which helps promote healthy skin. They’re also known to enhance the immune system and protect the eyes. Plus, they can help fend off cold symptoms—because they’re chock full of vitamin C!
Little-known fact: Though unsubstantiated by science, Chinese medicine has used Goji berries for thousands of years as a remedy for everything from diabetes and malaria to hypertension and fever.
Why we love them: Gojis add the perfect burst of flavor, especially when it comes to breakfast: stir them into your oatmeal, granola, or smoothie bowls. Also, they’ll take sweet baked goods to the next level!
Try ours: Thrive Market Organic Goji Berries
Nutrition cred: Pumpkin seeds come with healthy doses of protein, dietary fiber, omega-3 fatty acids, magnesium, and phytosterols. Phytosterols help reduce LDL (bad) cholesterol levels and improve immune response.
Little-known fact: It’s been said that the word “pumpkin” actually came about in the 17th century, after the phrase was coined in the fairytale “Cinderella.” Prior to that, the French called them gros melons, which translates to pepon or large melon.
Why we love them: So many reasons, but these flavor-packed spiced renditions are high on the list.
Try ours: Thrive Market Pumpkin Seeds
Nutrition cred: Medjool dates are an excellent source of digestion-boosting dietary fiber along with potassium and copper. Potassium helps regulate blood pH levels and is used to convert glucose into usable energy, while copper—an essential trace mineral—helps the body form collagen and elastin which create bones, skin, and connective tissue.
Little-known fact: Dates are considered the oldest cultivated fruit in the world! Fossils show date palm trees survived over 50 million years ago.
Why we love them: Slice one open, take out the seed, and fill it with a spoonful of almond butter. Then you’ll understand exactly why we love them. Seriously, do it right now.
Try ours: Thrive Market Organic Medjool Dates
Photo credit: Alicia Cho