Reviewed: Quinoa Skinny Crackers

GOOD FOR YOUAll RowI am an unabashed cracker lover. My love affair with the crunchy tidbits began in childhood. After school, I would curl up on my bed with a handful of graham crackers thickly spread with silky cold butter and honey and get contentedly absorbed in the latest Nancy Drew mystery. As a teenager, convinced I was developing a more sophisticated adult palate, I embraced the highly processed pairing of Ritz Crackers and faux-wine-flavoured cheese spread. Thankfully, after my studies in nutritional science, the Ritz Cracker cravings gave way to a yearning for more wholesome fare—and I swiftly developed a “thing” for hearty European rye crackers like Wasa and Ryevita.


To this day, I am still an avowed cracker fan. For me, it’s all about the texture—I love a good “crunch”—I find crispiness decidedly pleasant. Given this predilection, and the fact that crackers feature heavily in my culinary repertoire, I am always trying new varieties. Though I have no medical reason to do so, I have even tried some of the gluten-free varieties that have recently flooded the cracker market. Unfortunately, I have found most of these rather tasteless and chock-full of unhealthy, overly refined flours, starches and fillers like white rice flour, potato starch and xanthan gum.


However, undaunted by these past purchases and ever the intrepid reviewer, I recently tried another gluten-free cracker—the Quinoa Skinny. Admittedly, I was initially drawn to them by the veritable shopping list of super-foods they contain—quinoa flakes, millet flour, sunflower seeds, hulled millet, buckwheat flour, ground flax seeds, sunflower oil and various spices, herbs and natural flavourings. (The latter depends on the particular flavour you purchase). Being a nutritionist, I was cognizant of the health enhancing properties of this impressive, nutrient-dense mix. Quinoa, millet and buckwheat are all extremely beneficial whole grains teeming with vitamins, minerals, and phyto-nutrients that have anticancer, cardio-protective and anti-inflammatory properties.  Sunflower and flax seeds both contain health fatty acids that promote heart health and support cognitive function. What’s more, both super-seeds are chock-full of Vitamin E and other antioxidants that improve immune function and fight cancer.


Though I found these health aspects impressive, what really grabbed me about these crackers was their taste. As a self-proclaimed cracker aficionado, I can say, without a hint of embarrassment, that I experienced “cracker nirvana” upon tasting these crispy little gems. Their crunch is not “hard”—it’s a delicate crispiness that abounds with true flavour. There are six flavours to choose from—BELLA (Savoury Italian), HEAT (garlic, cayenne), CRAVE, (Rock salt), FIX, (chocolate), BURST, (lemon, berry) and COZY (apple cinnamon).  I tried the BELLA flavour—seasoned  perfectly with a delicious blend of thyme, rosemary; basil; sage and sea salt—and truly struggled not to eat the entire box in one go. Nevertheless, I did manage to restrain myself and several days later enjoyed them again topped with goat cheese and sun-dried tomato pesto.  I also added them “crushed” in place of breadcrumbs to some crab cakes I made. They turned out to be the best crab cakes that have ever come out of my own kitchen.


Bottom line—should you try these crackers?  They are undeniably, tasty, nutritious, low in calories, fat and sodium—perhaps the more salient question is why wouldn’t you try them, why wouldn’t anyone?

3.8 stars


Available in Victoria at Lifestyle’s, The Market on Yates, Market on Millstream, Country Grocer

In Vancouver at Nourish Foods, Famous Foods, New Apple Farm Market, Central Gourmet Produce and Deli, IGA, Healthy Monkey Café

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