These sustainable companies are repurposing leftover plant-based ingredients and combating food waste!
According to the USDA, 30-40% of the food supply in the United States is wasted. We’re talking hundreds of billions of pounds each year! With stats like that, solving this problem can feel like a hopeless battle. But we can absolutely do our part to make a difference. To start, we can be mindful of our own food practices. But we can also shop sustainable brands that are making headway in the reduction of food waste. Don’t know where to start? We’ve got you! Check out our list of 13 vegan upcycled food brands.
The California superfruits, aka dates from Joolies, are packed with fiber, copper, and potassium. In addition to other sustainable farming methods, this upcycled food brand is not wasting a thing! The brand upcycles low-grade dates for date syrup and sells imperfect dates at a discount. The latter are lovingly nicknamed “Ugglies” and can be used in baking, making smoothies, and solo snacking.
This brand is giving a second chance to veggies that don’t usually get one. You know we love to see it! Seconds takes fresh, neglected carrots, dehydrates them, and mills them into flour. This is mixed with upcycled oat milk flour and other tasty ingredients. Finally, Seconds Carrot Crackers are ready! These crave-worthy snacks are crisp and savory. Find them in Original Crunch, Everything Crunch, and Chipotle Ranch Crunch.
RIND is fighting food waste one fruit snack at a time. This upcycled food brand utilizes whole fruits, including their skins. Not only do fruit skins and rinds pack extra vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber, but they taste amazing! That’s some serious peel power! These zero-waste snacks include chewy dried kiwi, coconut crisps, apple chips, and more. Seriously, we can’t put them down!
From carrot pulp to vanilla bean remains, Renewal Mill upcycles a variety of product leftovers. After harvesting the byproduct, the brand dries and mills the ingredients into a fine powder. The upcycled products are then used as key ingredients in cooking and baking. The eco-friendly brand offers baking mixes, baked goods, and cookie kits. For example, the Oat Chocolate Chip Cookie Mix contains upcycled oat milk flour and upcycled pea starch. Spoiler, this mix makes some killer cookies.
Did you know that the chocolate industry wastes a significant portion of the cacao plant during chocolate production? Blue Stripes is changing the way we eat cacao by using the underrated fruit to produce snacks, beverages, and treats. Nothing goes to waste here! Blue Stripes uses the entire fruit. Find sustainable, nutrient-packed products like Cacao Water and Whole Cacao Chocolate Bars, along with granola and fruit smoothies.
These chips might just have you saying, “What the pulp?” Pulp Pantry takes the leftover fiber from vegetable juices and transforms it into snackable chips. These crisps are 100% vegan, gluten-free, and free from all grains. Find Pulp Chips in Jalapeno Lime, Barbeque, Salt & Vinegar, and Sea Salt varieties. Pair them with your favorite dip.
Dirt Kitchen Snacks
Culinary-inspired, air-dried veggie crisps? Sign us up. Dirt Kitchen Snacks specializes in giving rescued veggies a tasty upgrade. The upcycled food brand turns blemished, surplus, and overly ripe produce into tasty veggie-packed snacks. The brand offers air-dried veggie crisps with and without nuts, along with pressed bars. The Zucchini Crisps will always be our go-to.
Level up your at-home appetizers with Wholly Veggie. Both the Mozzarella Style Sticks and Cheddar Style Jalapeno Sticks are made with rescued veggies. But, you seriously cannot tell. Add these tasty restaurant-quality appetizers to your weekly routine. Not only are these frozen apps totally delish, but they are also changing how we think about food waste.
The upcycled food lab of the future, ReGrained is transforming leftover grains into tasty baking mixes. These second chance grains are a byproduct of the beer-making process. While these grains have technically been used before, their nutrient profile is still going strong. So, the next time you find yourself sipping your favorite brew, whip up some baked goods to accompany your bev. Find brownies, pizza crust, carrot cake, and banana bread mixes from this upcycled food brand.
The Ugly Company
This company built a brand around repurposing ugly produce. We’d say, they chose a pretty fitting name. But the truth is, there’s nothing ugly about it. The imperfect fruits used by The Ugly Company are perfectly good to eat but contain minor scuffs or imperfections. Products include dried cherries, nectarines, and kiwis. While we can’t speak for you, this sounds pretty beautiful to us.
Traditionally, cacao pods produce chocolate, while the rest of the plant is thrown away. But not with CaPao. This upcycled food brand uses the entire fruit to make delicious cacao fruit bites. Not only are these sustainable snacks delicious and antioxidant-packed, but they are also fighting food waste. Find CaPao Cacaofruit Bites in a variety of vegan-friendly, gluten-free, and non-GMO formulations. Our fave flavor is the Cherry Almond Cocoa.
We are jamming out with Chia Smash superfood jams. But these aren’t just any jams. Chia Smash uses four simple ingredients—chia seeds, berries, dates, and lemons—and forgoes any added sugar. How sweet! But, the best part about this company is that it uses upcycled fruits. We love to see it! Find Chia Smash Jam in raspberry, strawberry, and blueberry varieties. They taste great on just about anything.
Got ugly veggies? Confetti Snacks is reducing food waste by creating delicious veggie-packed snacks from unwanted produce. But you’d never guess that these veggies were once considered undesirable. Confetti Snacks makes crave-worthy crisps from vibrant, nutrient-rich veggie leftovers. From Summer Truffle Veggie Chips to Green Curry Mushroom Chips, the sustainable snack brand has something for everyone.