May 02, 2014

Crunchy, spicy, salty, sweet: Zouq snacks review



I'm usually pretty cautious when it comes to accepting products for review. It has to be something I think I'll like and will probably use, and if it's food, it has to be vegan, gluten-free and reasonably healthy. I know not everyone requires their snacks to be healthy, but I prefer to eat mainly healthy things — or at least not outrageously unhealthy ones. I don't want to consume GMOs, and I try to avoid palm oil. When I was asked if I'd be willing to review Zouq Indian snacks, I didn't think much about any of those things — only about the addictive fried lentils and other spicy snacks I've purchased in the past from farmers markets and Indian delis. So am I a hypocrite? Maybe.



I received four cans of puffed, fried snacks ranging in weight from 2.47 to 3.88 ounces, with varying serving sizes of three to four servings per can. The cans have an easy-off tab top and a plastic lid, with a recommended shelf life of 14 days after opening. I don't think consuming them within 14 days should be a problem for anyone. Not consuming them all in one day is more likely to be the issue. I've just munched one serving — of each — meaning I think I just had snacks for lunch.


As you can see there are four flavors, and I'll tell you a little bit about each one. On the left in the dish is Curry Crunch, with a sweet curry flavor and no heat. I tend not to like sweet snacks as much as savory ones, and that was the case here. The curry crunch was my least favorite of the group, though if you like a little sweetness to your snacks, this might be for you.

Next in line are the Golden Lentils, with a mild, toasty, saltier flavor. I really liked these a lot.

Third from the left are the Fiery Sticks, crispy and salty with a spicy kick and a slight tang from mango powder. The crunchy sticks were my favorite, and in fact, they're gone.

Last is the Jubilee Mix, another curry mix with a bit of spiciness and a hint of sweetness. The mix also contains fennel seed, but in a modest proportion that made me take notice, but not scream.



Here are the ingredients and nutrition facts for the Zouq snacks I sampled. The ingredients aren't labeled organic — they have the ambiguous "natural" label. They also claim 0% trans fat (except for the fiery sticks, which have 1% trans fat), no cholesterol or MSG, and they are gluten-free. On the Web site the company states the snacks contain no GMOs.You can find more information about the company and their products on their Web site (link here).






Do you prefer snack foods that are salty or sweet, and do you pay attention to the nutritional labels for snacks? Are there any ingredients that would stop you from buying a snack food?

12 comments:

  1. These look interesting, although the peanut ones would be out for me. The lentil one looks pretty good. Since I am allergic to nuts, I am quite limited in terms of savoury snacks. I sometimes just have resort to some homemade savoury cookies. I haven't seen these in my local grocery though, they are probably only going to be in health stores.

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    1. These are so new I think they are only available in LA or online.

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  2. most of these are still fried right. most of the indian snacks are pretty much fried. usually very salty and spicy though:) nice packaging and i like the fact that they are no gmos

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    1. Yeah, they're all fried — but very tasty. Two are spicy ans a little salty. No GMOs is good but organic would be even better!

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  3. I don't think it's hypocritical really. I try to mostly eat healthy food too but I will eat anything free (and vegan)
    They sound tasty!

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    1. Why, you're absolutely right. I won't eat anything, but free and vegan and something I like ... then probably. And the snacks are definitely tasty! Salty and fried is hard to resist.

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  4. I’ve heard about these Zouq Indian snacks and these cans have a nice packaging. I like the easy-off tab top and that you can save them within 14 days after opening. If I would try the Curry Crunch, I would like a bit of heat if they are sweet. Looks like Fiery Sticks and Jubilee Mix are probably the ones I would try first - I love flavors and heat. Awesome bonus that they are GF and contain no GMOs.

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    1. The cans were handy, and I liked the spicy flavors best, too. The firey sticks were the first to disappear.

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  5. Yummy looking snacks! Bummer that they're fried but probably good for a once in a while treat or as a salad topping. :-)

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    1. I never thought of using them for a salad topping. Great idea! I've just been eating them by the handful.

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  6. I was eyeing the fiery sticks for sure and then I saw there is mango powder in them and I am allergic to mango anything, but hey if they are free..what's a little trip to the emergency room?

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    1. Mango shows up in so many Indian snacks — bummer that you're allergic. I'm allergic to the skin but after accidentally drinking a smoothie containing mango, I discovered I could eat the fruit. You could eat them in the emergency room which would be more convenient than having to go there after.

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