Every Sunday, my husband and I head to the Hillcrest Farmers Market. I love the fresh produce, people watching, and tasty samples from vendors. I have my favorites of course, but I’m always amazed at the variety of delicious options. Gluten-free, vegan, paleo, or adventurous (that’s my husband)—there’s something for you.
My latest trip to University Ave. got me thinking about the myriad local companies sampling healthy snacks, sips, and meals week after week and/or working hard to get their product on grocery store shelves. How many of these companies are based right here in San Diego? As it turns out, a lot!
I prefer to shop local whenever possible, and with dozens of companies churning out healthy products nearby, doing so has gotten a lot easier. Looking to add a few San Diego favorites to your foodie wishlist? I’ve rounded up the ultimate guide to San Diego-based food companies.
Truth be told, I love the name 🙂 Brekki is your solution to a delicious nutritionally balanced breakfast on-the-go. A unique mix of oats, ancient grains, chia seeds, flax seeds, and almond milk, each cup is jam packed with protein, fiber, and enough calories to keep you full all morning. My personal favorite is blueberry with that extra hint of sweetness. Brekki is currently available in 24 Whole Foods Markets (I get my stash in Del Mar), Seaside Market, and a few other spots in San Diego.
I tried my first bite of Mush at the Little Italy Mercato. And it tasted like just that—mush. I love that it’s simple, delicious, and easy to bring on-the-go. My personal favorite is Dark Cacao, made with almond mylk, organic oats, organic date, organic raw cacao powder, and sea salt. Mush also lists out the macronutrient breakdown of each flavor on its packaging, too. At first glance the package looks pretty small, but don’t worry—those oats will fill you up in no time. #eatMush
The Kefir Soda from Superfood Coffee Company is refreshing, bubbly, and caffeine free. The “soda” tastes pretty similar to kombucha (I have an addiction). But, there’s a lot to love about the final Kefir Soda product: local mountain water, cold pressed juice, and beneficial bacteria for your gut. I’m not a ginger fan, so I opt for flavors without–like Berry Burst. Sample them all at farmers markets around town. The team also makes coffee (go figure), Hero Milk™, and Superbooch™ (Kombucha).
The first time I tried Bootchcraft my first thought was, “woah, that’s strong!” Bootchcraft is the only brewery in Southern California offering a high alcohol kombucha (7.0% ABV). Basically, it’s the socially acceptable way to get a buzz after yoga (I’ve totally done it).
Created by team at GOODONYA Organic in Encinitas, 1051 is a daily mineral beverage designed to keep you nourished and hydrated. I first tried 1051 at the Sweat San Diego Event in May, and loved the fresh and fruity taste. I had no idea it was made locally from the team in Encinitas! Snatch up a case of the Berry, Lemon, and Orange flavors on their website, on Amazon, or at natural markets across the US.
Oh! I’m ready for some juice 🙂 With flavors like Go Greens, Cookies N Protein (I need to try this one!), Chia Tea, and more, the locally sourced, glass bottled, and cold-pressed juices has flavors for every type of juicer. Now, I’ll admit, I’m a bit of skeptic when it comes to juicing. But I love the Oh! Juice story, and chef Hannah’s goal to create cleanses utilizing strong alkalizing veggies, exotic spices, and superfoods—not sugary fruits. Get your fix at farmers markets in San Diego or at the Tasting Room in Carlsbad.
Rau is the first cold-pressed chocolate beverage on the market. Wait. A healthy chocolate drink? Yes, please. Organic, fair trade cacao beans are hand picked straight from the tree and infused with pure organic spices, free of refined sugar, dairy, and preservatives. Choose from flavors like Semi-Sweet, Coconut, Original, and Cold Brew Mocha. Bottoms up!
Solti is the mecca of organic beverage tasting experiences. Tucked away in beer central off Miramar Road, the Tasting Room is bright, beautiful, and perfect for events. I first discovered Solti at a yoga event earlier this year, and I fell in love with the space. Choose from eight organic cold crafted beverages on tap and vegan eats from restaurants around town. Order your Solti stash online or at local restaurants and shops in San Diego.
Gimme all the bars! I sampled my first Perfect Bar four-ish years ago at Barry’s Bootcamp. Way back when the packaging was different and every flavor had peanut (sorry, peanut is my arch food nemesis). Then, Almond Butter entered the picture. Game changer. Perfect Bar is great to grab on the go. My personal fave, Almond Acai, is a bit harder to find and NOT available in the Costco combo packs. Sad face 🙁 The one thing I love about Perfect Bars is I actually feel like I’m eating real food and they are pretty filling. Dieters beware: the bars are high in flavor and in calories. So, keep an eye out.
Nii bars were love at first bite. Ironically, I tried Nii bars at Solti (remember that yoga event I mentioned above?!). The nut-butter based bars are vegan friendly, soy-free, gluten-free, organic, and made with good quality clean ingredients. I’m a fan of the Cacao Coconut, made with organic raw cashew butter. Coconut is one of those foods I’ve really grown to love with age, and now, I can’t get enough!
The Phive Bar story is truly something special. The bars were created by former NFL quarterback, Kyle Boller, and his wife, Carrie, after watching her father’s amazing recover from stage 4 tongue cancer. Following her father’s health transformation, the two set off on a quest to make the world a healthier place, one High PHIVE at a time. The bars come in three flavors (Blueberry, Original, and Peanut), with the “golden ratio” of nuts, seeds, blueberries, plums, prunes, and dates. In my experience, most bars taste pretty sugary or “fake,” but not these. I felt like I was eating something with quality ingredients. I went back the next day and grabbed a few more.
One of my favorite things about Rickaroons (besides the taste of course) is the name. Say Rickaroon ten times fast. The father-son duo makes coconut energy bars that taste like dessert. Trust me, they do. The mounds of deliciousness are organic, vegan, and gluten free, so all of your friends can eat safely. My favorite is the chocolate blonde, a perfect mix of coconut and dark chocolate.
The best paleo treats in the world. Guaranteed. I got a taste of the treats at the Hillcrest Farmers Market, and I will admit, they were pretty tasty. Paleo Treats can be tricky to make at home. With flavors like “Brownie Bomb” and “Cacao Now”, you really can’t go wrong. Are they really Paleo? Well, cavemen didn’t have ovens. But all of the ingredients were around 10,000 years ago 🙂 Order your sweet treat online.
NuttZo is a medley of seven organic nuts and seeds. Flavors come in a 16 oz. jar or single serving packet, perfect for on-the-go snacking. I first sampled NuttZo at a yoga event (I see a trend) a year ago, and I loved the crunchy texture. I could actually taste the seeds! I love the Organic NuttZo Power Fuel, made from roasted cashews and almonds. Sorry, no peanuts in this house 🙂 #NuttZoLove
Yea, their sauce is pretty bitchin’. What makes Bitchin’ Sauce so different? It’s made from Almonds, as opposed to your stand chickpea hummus fare. I’m a personal fan of the Original and Pesto flavors, great for dipping veggies—Cilantro Chili and Heat pack a bit too much fire for my palette. The bitchin’ team has been on the Costco Roadshow circuit, a perfect opportunity to buy in bulk.
Hands down, my favorite hummus…EVER! And I’ve tried a lot of hummus. Majestic Garlic Hummus and I first met on a sunny day at the Hillcrest Farmers Market. Really, the relationship was just meant to be. After sampling a variety of flavors, the Almond Date was “it.” Now, when I stop by the booth I buy in bulk. My husband I have brought their hummuswith us to several potlucks and it’s always a crowd favorite.
Asana Foods makes the best Almond Buddha™ in San Diego. As a Hillcrest Farmers Market regular, this booth is always on my “must stop and sample” list. My personal favorite is Almond Cinnabuddah, with cassia cinnamon, nutmeg, coconut flakes, and coconut palm sugar for that extra bit of sweetness. Paired with berries, one spoonful makes the perfect evening treat (use a big spoon). They also make raw honey and granola (coconut almond all the way!). Order online, buy at a few local shops around town, or taste test at the Farmers Market.
What are some of your favorite San Diego foodie finds? I love to support local and look forward to taste testing them too 🙂
(Featured photo provided by Solti)