We have a new pretzel passion: Stellar Braids from Stellar Snacks. Unveiled to the trade earlier this year, Stellar Braids are a line of flavor-forward, vegan*, non-GMO, no MSG, kosher (certified by OU) pretzels.
Founded by a mother-daughter team in Carson City, Nevada, the pretzels have made their way to stores nationwide—and online, of course.
We like pretzels, and the flavored versions of Stellar Braids have a little something extra: monk fruit.
Monk fruit, called luo han guo in its native China, is a herbaceous perennial vine bearing small, round, melons.
Monk fruit has long been used in China as a zero-calorie sweetener, as well as in traditional Chinese medicine.
In Stellar’s pretzel dough, it adds a bit of sweetness as a counterpoint to savory flavors:
Next, you might ask, what’s vegan butter?
Vegan butter is a plant-based, nondairy butter that’s typically made by blending water with one or more plant oil, such as avocado, coconut, olive, or palm kernel oil.
These products often contain additional ingredients to emulate the flavor, and texture of real butter, such as colorings, emulsifiers, salt, and other natural or artificial flavors. Here are 10 well-regarded vegan butter brands.
For Stellar Braids, the vegan butter adds a subtle but delicious butter flavor.
Baked from scratch daily in Carson City, Nevada, special attention is paid to the quality of the ingredients. No less than imported sea salt from Italy is used, and the company is dedicated to sustainable manufacturing practices.
And one more nice thing: The package designs showcase budding artists, making them a canvas for something truly Stellar.
Emerging illustrators and designers are given a platform to showcase their talents and you get a work of art on every bag.
Look for them at specialty food stores, including Central Market, Holiday Market, Mariano’s, Ralph’s, Surfas, and World Market.
And of course, they’re online at StellarSnacks.com.
We were pleased to find our favorite flavor, Bold & Herby, on Instacart.
*Pretzels typically are vegan products. The ingredients are flour, water, yeast, vegetable shortening, and sugar. Here’s how each ingredient contributes to the pretzel.