The Good: Good corporate ethics, Do not taste bad, Good ingredients
The Bad: Comparatively expensive, Disappointing flavor, Not actually nutritious
The Basics: The Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs from Hippeas are a letdown for anyone looking for a flavorful snack that matches the quality of the ingredients.
I like supporting small companies, especially ones that have a clear, progressive ethos guiding them. I want to do my part for the liberal agenda and when I heard about Hippeas, they seemed like a great company with a positive social agenda. In addition to doing good things with their profits, Hippeas belabored the quality of their ingredients: gluten-free, Kosher and Vegan-compliant, Non-GMO organic ingredients that were healthy; Hippeas seemed to be working very hard to establish its products as positive for the environment and for consumers. So, when my local grocery store in the middle of the "meat and potatoes" part of Michigan was forced to clearance some of their Hippeas products because no one was buying them, I rushed right in to buy them up.
Now, sadly, I find myself regretting that decision. As I sat down to consume my first back of Hippeas products - Hippeas Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs - I came to realize that perhaps these snacks were not selling out in my area not because they were not they style of the consumer base, but rather because they were not very good. Call me crazy, but if I'm eating a snack that claims to be cheddar flavored, the first thing I expect when I taste it is something recognizably cheese-flavored!
Hippeas Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs are a ready-to-eat snack that attempts to fill the same niche as cheese puff but for people with dietary restrictions or picky eating habits or higher moral standards than most consumers. Packaged in a 4 oz. plastic bag, the Hippeas Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs are kept fresh until opened. After unsealing the the top of the bag, consumers have access to the snack inside.
The Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs look just like white/yellow cheese puffs. They are approximately 2" long and 5/8" thick and are textured much like a traditional cheese puff snack.
Ease Of Preparation
These are flavored, puff chick peas - intended to be a ready-to-eat snack food -, so preparing them is as easy as opening the bag they come in and consuming them. There is no trick or work beyond that needed to eat Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs.
The Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs smell remotely cheesy. I love cheese and I like some truly smelly cheeses; the Hippeas Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs smell like cheese that has gone a little bad. Or like a gym locker that was recently cleaned out . . . the smelly clothes aren't in it, but the smell still lingers. Actually, the smell of the Hippeas Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs is almost identical to the smell of sneaker rubber on a gymnasium floor.
On the flavor front, the Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs taste like puffed corn or rice and sawdust. The distinct flavor of wood shavings and salt is the dominant flavor of the Hippeas Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs. The Hippeas Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs taste almost nothing like cheese as they transition from bland and airy to sandy and woody. The flavor transitions with the texture as the Hippeas Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs move in the mouth from greasy to dry.
The Hippeas Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs leave a light, chickpea aftertaste in the mouth after the last of the sawdust flavor fades.
Hippeas are not at all impressive on the nutrition front. While the company seems to be a cool company with a positive social message, more than being anything good for anyone, the Hippeas Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs seem to actually just be not bad. In other words, where most snack foods are nutritional detriments, Hippeas Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs don't put anything bad into a consumer's body. The unfortunate flipside is, they don't actually put anything particularly good or beneficial into a consumer's body, either. A serving is considered 28 grams, approximately 20 chickpea puffs. With the standard recommended serving size, the puffs have 5 grams of fat! That's 8% of the RDA of fat, though none of that comes in the form of saturated fat! The Hippeas Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs have 130 calories per serving, with 45 calories of that being from fat. There is 2% of the RDA of calcium and four grams of protein, which acts as a decent counterbalance to the fat content! There is also a smattering (8% RDA) of Iron in the Hippeas Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs.
The ingredients list for these Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs is fairly short, which is nice because the ingredients are all-natural and most are organic. Hippeas are made primarily of Organic Chickpea Flour, Organic Rice Flour, and Organic Sunflower Oil. There is nothing unpronounceable in these puffs and the ingredients are generally healthy. There are no notations about any potential allergens in the Hippeas factory, so these seem to be a great snack for those who have a nut allergy to enjoy!
Just as with the preparation, Hippeas Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs are low stress when it comes to storage and cleanup. Storage is simple when the snacks are kept in their bag at room temperature or cooler. Kept sealed in their bag, these puffed chickpeas would not have expired until January 1, 2018.
Hippeas Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs are easy to clean up after as well. Simply wash your hands after eating, though they do not leave one with any sort of residue on one's hands.
Hippeas Vegan White Cheddar organic chickpea puffs are one of the least flavorful snacks for those who have a boatload of dietary restrictions, failing to thrill anyone who likes flavor.
For other snack reviews, please visit my takes on:
Wickedly Prime Sweet 'N' Cheesy Popcorn Mix
Quest Beyond Cinnamon Roll Cereal Protein Bar
Kala Beautiful Beans Simply Peppered roasted fava beans
For other food and drink reviews, please Food Review Index Page for an organized listing!
© 2017 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.
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