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What's Really in Your Favorite Snacks? Slideshow

What's Really in Your Favorite Snacks? Slideshow

Photos courtesy aisleatecom and Wikimedia Commons/Edgar181

Example: Kellogg's® Nutri-Grain®Cereal Bars Strawberry

Read any of the news stories linking hyperactivity in children to food dyes and you start to get really scared about Red #40. Why so hostile, Red #40? Turns out that Red #40 is the most used dye, in terms of pounds consumed. It is approved for use in beverages, baked goods, candies, cereals, drugs, and cosmetics. The disturbing fact is that the dye has been shown to cause cancer in lab tests on mice, according to a report by the Center for Science in the Public Interest.

Red #40

Photos courtesy aisleatecom and Wikimedia Commons/Edgar181

Example: Kellogg's® Nutri-Grain®Cereal Bars Strawberry

Read any of the news stories linking hyperactivity in children to food dyes and you start to get really scared about Red #40. The disturbing fact is that the dye has been shown to cause cancer in lab tests on mice, according to a report by the Center for Science in the Public Interest.

Corn Syrup Solids

Photos courtesy Wikimedia Commons/Evan Amos and Ondrejk

Example: Doritos Cheese Supreme

Weirdly,this favorite cheesy snack contains four different sweeteners, including corn syrup solids. Basically dried and powderedcorn syrup, this ingredient can actually give snackers the urge to consume even more sugar.Thechemical that tells your body you're full is disrupted by eating these sweet ingredients, leading to overeating. The nutrition label lists one gram of sugar per serving, which is only 11 chips.Do youknow anyone who only eats 11 Doritos in a sitting? Exactly.

Coconut, Palm Kernel, and Soybean Oils

Photos courtesy Crystal Escobar and Wikimedia Commons/Sentient Planet

Example: Sunbelt Blueberry Harvest Chewy Granola Bars

With 2.5 grams of saturated fats (thats the bad kind, folks), these little bars would contribute 13 percent of your daily recommended value of saturated fat, while raising your total and LDL cholesterol levels (again, the bad ones). The American Heart Association cautions that high LDL cholesterol levels can lead to a build-up of plaque in your arteries. So the less you eat, the better.


Photos courtesy Wrigley and Wikimedia Commons/NEUROtiker

Example: Orbit Gum

If youve ever seen a warning on a pack of gum and wondered, What the?, youre not alone. Phenylalanine is an ingredient in many artificial sweeteners, including Equal and NutraSweet. In rare cases, including people with the genetic metabolic disorder phenylketonuria (PKU), phenylalanine can be a serious concern.

The Mayo Clinic recommends avoiding phenylalanine if you take medications such as monoamine oxidase inhibitors, neuroleptics, or medications that contain levodopa; have tardive dyskinesia; have a sleep disorder; anxiety disorder; or other mental health condition. Umpass.

According to, phenylalanine is found in more than 6,000 products in the form of aspartame, including cough drops, soft drinks, gelatin, yogurt, and most notably, Diet Coke.

Acetic Acid

Photos courtesy amazon and Wikimedia Commons/Materialscientist

Example: Nabisco 100-Calorie Ritz Snacks Mix

Acetic acid is the pungent chemical that gives vinegar its odor and sour taste. The food industry uses acetic acid as an acidity regulator. Weirdly, the same chemical is also used to produce polymers for products like soda bottles, photographic film, and wood glue. No wonder diet food is often described as having a strange consistency!

Xanthan Gum

Photos courtesy Amazon and Wikimedia Commons/NEUROtiker

Example: Planters Trail Mix Alaskan Wilderness Blend

Xanthan gum is a ubiquitous food additive that can be found in everything from ice cream to cold cuts. It is actually a sugar, usually derived from corn, which can act as a thickener or stabilizer. Some people may experience gastrointestinal distress (read: upset tummy) from ingesting too much xanthan gum. So, you know, just dont go on any trail mix binges or anything.

Chicory Root Extract

Photos courtesy and Wikimedia Commons/Rasbak

Example: Fiber One 90-Calorie Chewy Bar

Not so much a chemical as a, What the heck is that and why is it in my Fiber One bar? Chicory root, also known as inulin, has become a go-to for food manufacturers looking for a taste-free way to include extra fiber in their products. It has a creamy mouthfeel that imitates fat, which makes a perfect addition to low-fat, high-fiber products.


Photos courtesy Wikimedia Commons/Spitfire19 and Roland1952

Example: Hidden Valley Light Ranch Dressing

OK, it's not really one of your favorite snacks, but many mothers get kids to eat veggies they don't want by letting them slather on some ranch dressing, right? Carrots and ranch yum yum. What mom didn't tell you was that you were getting a little sea plant-life in the dressing as well. A derivative of seaweed, carageenan is another thickening agent, similar to xanthan gum. It contributes to ranch dressings characteristic thick, creamy texture. Now you know.

Polyglycerol Polyricinoleate

Photos courtesy Wikimedia Commons/Evan Amos and Magnus Manske

Example: Twix Bars

Commonly know as PGPR, this additivehelps chocolate coat more thinly and smoothly on some of your favorite chocolatetreats. By taking out naturally occurring cocoa fat and replacing it with this slimy yellow goo, it becomes easier to manipulate chocolate. PGPR doesn't seem to carry any known health risks, but replacing naturally occurring fats with synthetic material can lead to deterioration of quality and taste.

Modified Food Starch

Photos courtesy abetterbagofgroceriescom and Wikimedia Commons/Glane23

Example: Gogurt Burstin' Melon Berry

Modifiedfood starch is pretty muchwhat it sounds like. Abase starch such as rice, corn, wheat, potato, or tapioca is modified with another starch to enhance itsproperties, such as thickening agents, consistency, texture, and shelf life.Gogurt is a low-fat yogurt, and a company spokesperson explained that modified food starch is used to thicken theyogurt in lieu of fat.

65 Super Bowl Snacks For the Ultimate Football Party

A few things are certain every Super Bowl Sunday. Some fans will be the happiest they've ever been, and others not so much. The company will be great, and the food incomparable. But if you're in charge of supplying the latter for the big game day, it may be a little stressful trying to find the perfect Super Bowl snacks, and understandably so. You may be looking for recipes that little ones and adults will enjoy all the same, don't take too long to prepare, and are easy to make. These Super Bowl party foods are just some of the many game day snacks out there. From grilled vegetables, to chili cheese dogs, to all the dips you could possibly imagine, there's something for everyone &mdash picky eats, meat lovers, and even vegetarians.

However, it's important to note, that while you may be accustomed to throwing a big party for all of your neighbors, friends, and family on Super Bowl Sunday, it may be best to avoid those kinds of celebrations this year. The COVID-19 pandemic rages on, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continues to advise against large gatherings whenever possible. So, this Super Bowl Sunday, instead of hosting a block party, you may want to consider having a smaller gathering with your quarantine pod or just those who live in your household. But, hey, even they have to eat, and any one of these Super Bowl snacks is bound to be an instant crowd-pleaser.

14 Surprising Snacks I&rsquom Grabbing from Costco for the Super Bowl

In the scope of Super Bowl party food recommendations, you would be completely within your rights to ignore an article that recommends hitting Costco for great Super Bowl treats. Because the fact is, if you recognize the name Costco, you already know that this big box store is the ideal place to shop when hosting a party (their best-kept secret is a dinner party game-changer), for everything from paper goods to beverages, to party-sized quantities at rational prices.

So, I am not here to tell you to shop for your Super Bowl party at Costco for all of these very good and very rational reasons. I am here to say that if you want something of a global twist to your upcoming Super Bowl entertaining, Costco has some surprising and awesome additions to your spread that just might make you the coolest house on Sunday.

Here were my favorite finds at my local Costco this Super Bowl week. Obviously, every branch is different, so not everything will necessarily be available near you, but there is enough here to play with!

Mushrooms take the place of the traditional cured pork in this super-satisfying vegetarian carbonara recipe.

The almond oil in this recipe is so easy to make and also perfect for salad dressings.

Recipes you want to make. Cooking advice that works. Restaurant recommendations you trust.

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What's Really in Your Favorite Snacks? Slideshow - Recipes

I am utterly smitten with Thai food, and have been ever since my brother introduced me to my first plate of Tom Kah coconut soup when I was in second grade. Thai food is my go-to, my first choice whenever someone asks me what my last meal would be before I die. (Out of context, I guess that's a really morbid question, but whatever.) I've lived in three cities in the last five years, and I've always made sure there was a Thai restaurant nearby, because #priorities.

If Thai is your feast of choice as well, then you, like me, have probably tried to recreate your favorite meals in your own kitchen. And you may have, in the process, learned that it's really, really hard. Like, not matter how much fish and oyster sauce, no matter how much coconut milk you use, or red chili peppers you let soak in your pan, it never comes out quite right.

It's also hard finding the right recipe that at least comes close to the "real thing" (and I use that term loosely, since I've never actually been to Thailand and have no way to gauge the authenticity of my meals, but anyway), because to recreate your favorite Thai food, you need the proper ingredients. And those ingredients are hard to come by. So when you find a recipe, you want to make sure the substitutions are at least close to the real thing (hey, at least you're trying).

Here are 11 pretty solid recipes that come deliciously close to visiting Thailand itself.

10 Easy After-School Snacks That Practically Make Themselves

Are you all too familiar with feeling like your kids are eating machines who are always hungry &mdash especially after a long day at school? Well then, add these super simple, kid-approved snacks to your daily arsenal. They're great for keeping hungry mouths happy until dinner&rsquos ready or giving them an extra boost of energy before soccer practice.

Dress up plain old popcorn with a few shakes of Hidden Valley® Original Ranch® Seasoning Shaker to create a yummy snack.

Mix peanut butter, honey, and oats together to create delicious to-go bars that require zero baking time. For extra flavor, add raisins or mini chocolate chips!

What's sweet, crunchy, and healthy? These energy bites, made with rice cereal and oats for a tasty nut-free snack.

Kick your favorite snack mix recipe up a notch with Hidden Valley® Original Ranch® Seasoning Shaker. Disclaimer: Little ones won't be able to stop eating it.

They'll never know they're eating fruit, thanks to the cinnamon-y taste of these apple bites.

This chocolate, peanut butter, and banana smoothie tastes like a milkshake, but is so much better for them. What's not to love?

Get kids to eat kale (yes, really) by baking up a batch of these "chips." The trick? Drizzling them with olive oil and a sprinkle of Hidden Valley® Original Ranch® Seasoning Shaker.

Another way to sneak in some pre-dinner veggies: Toss cauliflower with olive oil, parmesan and garlic powder.

Just three ingredients make up this ridiculously good-for-you freezer treat!

You can cook these chips in the microwave in just a few minutes and with only two ingredients (plus salt and pepper to taste).

Why You Need to Stop Using Foil and Use Parchment Instead

Those with a creative eye know firsthand that inspiration is all around us. Whether you're energized by the earth tones of nature, a color-filled walk through a local farmer's market, or even by a quick scroll through Instagram, you never know what might spark a new creative project.

In the spirit of inspiring your next masterpiece, we're excited to partner with Bounty to fuel the next generation of artists and designers forward by launching a national design competition. We're calling on graphic designers to apply for a chance to see their work featured on a new Brit + Co and Bounty paper towel collection, set to launch in 2022.

Aside from the incredible exposure of having your illustrations on paper towels that'll be in stores across America next year, you'll also receive $5,000 for your art a scholarship for Selfmade, our 10-week entrepreneurship accelerator to take your design career to the next level (valued at $2,000) and a stand alone feature on Brit + Co spotlighting your artistry as a creator.

The Creatively You Design Competition launches Friday, May 21, 2021 and will be accepting submissions through Monday, June 7, 2021.


Who Should Apply: Women-identifying graphic designers and illustrators. (Due to medium limitations, we're not currently accepting design submissions from photographers or painters.)

What We're Looking For: Digital print and pattern designs that reflect your design aesthetic. Think optimistic, hopeful, bright — something you'd want to see inside your home.

How To Enter: Apply here, where you'll be asked to submit 2x original design files you own the rights to for consideration. Acceptable file formats include: .PNG, .JPG, .GIF, .SVG, .PSD, and .TIFF. Max file size 5GB. We'll also ask about your design inspiration and your personal info so we can keep in touch.

Artist Selection Process: Panelists from Brit + Co and P&G Bounty's creative teams will judge the submissions and select 50 finalists on June 11, 2021 who will receive a Selfmade scholarship for our summer 2021 session. Then, up to 8 artists will be selected from the finalists and notified on June 18, 2021. The chosen designers will be announced publicly in 2022 ahead of the product launch.

For any outstanding contest Qs, please see our main competition page. Good luck & happy creating!

Our Favorite Mother's Day Appetizers that Say "We Love Mom"

Treat the special women in your life to delicious and totally doable Mother&rsquos Day appetizers. Let&rsquos be honest, nothing tastes better than Mom&rsquos cooking, so being able to put something together that makes her feel special is a wonderful gift. These appetizer recipes are easy to make and don&rsquot take much time. Set up everything buffet-style, with a few floral arrangements to make Mom&rsquos day. This is perfect for a casual gathering. The finger foods on the menu can be eaten in a few bites so everyone can mingle. Does Mom like things done a certain way? We&rsquove got the perfect solution. Set up a Mimosa Bar and a Shortcake Dessert Bar so everyone can make their treats to their liking. These appetizers will be bringing everyone back to the table to grab more, so don&rsquot be afraid to make extra. And the recipes can be easily doubled depending on your RSVP list. We&rsquove included some twists on retro Southern recipes in our appetizer round up. We&rsquove made sure to include recipes ranging from sweet to savory. These Mother&rsquos Day appetizers will satisfy the toughest critic. Just make sure you have the perfect Mother&rsquos Day gift to go along with it.

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