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Some Food for Thought: Flavorful Gift Ideas

Food fans: Here's a list of some outdoor-inclined edibles that we anticipate would make great gifts:

From REI’s Best-Seller List:

Mountain House Breakfast Skillet: This way-popular mashup of dehydrated eggs, hash browns, pork sausage, peppers and onion can be rolled in a tortilla or scooped straight from the bag. It’s gets a 4.5-star rating from more than 30 reviewers. Says one: “Probably the best freeze-dried breakfast I've ever had.”

Nature's Bakery Fig Bars: The healthy scoreboard: all-natural, whole wheat, stone-ground, kosher and free of cholesterol, dairy and trans fats. Handy for a fast breakfast if you don’t have time to bust out the stove. Available in apple, blueberry, peach and raspberry.

Chuao Gourmet Chocolate Bars: The gourmand on REI’s food-buying team tells me the trending flavor in Chuao’s assortment is Maple Bacon.

An outlandish combo? Maybe at first glance, but it’s been a huge hit. Also available: Salted Crunch (sea salt), Firecracker (sea salt plus chipotle) and Potato Chip (with kettle-cooked chips).

KIND Nuts and Spices Bars: All-natural, with whole nuts and flavorful spice treatments; high fiber but low glycemic and low sodium, plus no GMO, glutens or sugar alcohols. Flavors: vanilla almond, nuts/sea salt/dark chocolate, pecan/cinnamon/dark chocolate and cashew/ginger

Five-Star Beef Natural Beef Jerky: Protein fit for a gourmet. All-natural and no MSG. The flavor lineup: original, sweet and spicy, honey teriyaki and “Kinda Hot.”

Loucks Sesame Seed Snaps: These 1.4-ounce packets of healthy sweetness have a faithful following, as witnessed by their cumulative 5-star rating at Their blend of carbs, fat and protein deliver a sizable energy boost for minimal weight. Also available in a dark chocolate version.

Starbucks VIA Ready Brew Instant Coffee: Incredibly popular. Available in Italian Roast or Columbia in 8-packs, 3-packs or single servings. (Decaf Italian comes in a 3-pack.) Prefer hot chocolate? Go for Starbucks Gourmet Hot Cocoa (single servings).

On the New-and-Interesting Shelf

Honey Stinger Energy Waffles: The sweet-tasting energy booster adds a fab new flavor (lemon) to its current assortment (vanilla, chocolate, strawberry and honey).

NUUN All Day Hydration Tablets: The All Day version of the popular hydration tabs contain less sodium.

Jaipur Avenue Chai Tea Mix: Premium black tea combined with a exotic spices, minimal sugar and dry milk powder.

My Chi Delights Sesame Treats: An undiscovered gem, our in-house gourmand tells me.

Sesame seeds are blended with nuts to yield a tasty, healthy result. Flavors: walnut/sesame, almond/sesame and ginger/almond/sesame.

Sahale Snacks Crunchers Almond Snacks: Indulgences for any almond fans you know. Flavors: cherry maple, cranberry honey and parmesan herb flavor.

SEN CHA Original Mints: Interesting, unexpected, alternative mints that deliver the antioxidant boost of a cup of green tea.

Flavors: dragon fruit, Bombay chai, tropical mango and Moroccan Mint.

The Chocolate Traveler Chocolate Wedges with Tabasco: Another exotic flavor blend for chocolate lovers. Packaged in a fun, reusable tin.

Seasonal Items (limited-time availability)

Clif Bars: Anyone hungry for energy with a seasonal flair can try pumpkin, gingerbreak and peppermint stick.

Theo Holiday Chocolate Bars: Seasonal specialties are Milk & Cookies, Gingerbread Spice, Nutcracker Toffee, and Peppermint Stick. Also check out Theo’s Artisan Caramel Chocolates in Apple Cider, Grey Salted and Ghost Chile flavors.

Toblerone, the chocolatier which traces its roots to Switzerland, rolls out the Toblerone One-By-One Chocolates Gift Box (includes 4 flavors in individually wrapped pieces) and its big, honking 14-ounce milk chocolate Toblerone Holiday Big Bar.

SeaBear, a Northwest salmon specialist, is offering its Copper River Sockeye Smoked Salmon (6-ounce fillet) and its Smoked Salmon Trio: 6-ounce pieces each of 1) wild sockeye salmon, 2) wild king salmon and 3) wild pink salmon.

Posted on at 10:30 AM

Tagged: chocolate bars, food, gifts and holiday gifts

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