It seems that every week in the world of vegan food news is more exciting than the last, and this week is no exception. The holidays just got a little more fun with the launch of DIY cookie kits from Maya’s Cookies. Two new spreadable treats are here, as well, with Táche’s Nutella-like pistachio butter and blue-hued Mermaid Butter from PlantBaby.

Plus, the moment we’ve all been waiting for: Daiya is now rolling out its stretchier and meltier vegan cheeses. Read on for more. 

1Daiya’s new vegan cheese

Back in March, we got a sneak preview of new, stretchier vegan cheeses from Daiya Foods. Now, the pioneering company is ready to reveal the new formulations to the world. 

These updated products, including dairy-free shreds, slices, blocks, and sticks, are now hitting shelves nationwide in the United States and Canada. They are the fruit of Daiya’s substantial investment in fermentation technology, and all prominently feature the Daiya Oat Cream blend. This novel cultured ingredient ensures an authentic dairy-like melt and a well-balanced cheesy flavor.

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Embracing traditional fermentation methods, Daiya sets itself apart from brands relying on oil-based ingredients. “We are so excited to finally introduce our next-generation cheese—the main ingredient of which utilizes our natural fermentation technology,” Melanie Domer, Chief Commercial Officer at Daiya, said in a statement. “Our new and improved dairy-free cheeses are now made with Daiya Oat Cream blend for a cheesy, ‘melts-like-dairy’ experience that comforts in only the way cheese should.”

“We expect this advancement to not only rejuvenate consumer confidence in the category, but revitalize the category’s market potential, finally offering retailers a product that truly bridges the gap between consumer expectations and dairy-free offerings,” Domer said. 

Alongside the launch of these reformulated products, Daiya is rolling out a new brand identity. This includes a logo makeover, a fresh tagline, and redesigned packaging. Aimed at appealing to a broader spectrum of consumers, including flexitarians, its new campaign “100% Plant-based. Even If You’re Not.” invites everyone to experience its new vegan cheese formulations. 

2DIY cookie kits

If baking cookies is not your forté, Maya’s Cookies just launched a kit that can help you get in the holiday spirit. The company’s new festive DIY Cookie Decorating Kit includes six Classic Gingerbread cookies in two shapes (people and stars) ready-to-use icing with a piping bag, an assortment of candies and sprinkles, and instructional videos. It’s designed to spark creativity and holiday spirit in both adults and children.

The DIY kit is part of Maya’s Cookies’ new collections launched for the holidays.

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The Candy Cane Land Collection includes flavors like Chocolate Peppermint S’mores, Gingerbread People, Sparkle Sugar, and Peppermint Bark Bliss. Each purchase from this collection supports Detour Fancy, a mentorship program for girls of color. 

The Fireside Collection, perfect for cozy family gatherings, offers flavors such as Hot Chocolate S’mores, Red Velvet, Cinnamon Bun, and Holiday Spice Chocolate Chip.

And if you’re local to Southern California, you can pick up a holiday platter of 24 already decorated cookies from Maya’s in San Diego or San Marcos. 

3Táche’s pistachio nut spread

Nutella is a delicious dessert spread that just happens to contain dairy. And while it would be nice for Nutella to switch to non-dairy milk, in the meantime, vegans have other exciting spreads to choose from. And this week, a brand new contender came to the party from New York City-based company Táche.

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Founded by Roxana Saidi, the company is best known for its pistachio milks, but this holiday season, the company is dipping into a new category with the launch of limited-edition Pot de PisTáche, a spreadable vegan pistachio butter. 

“At Táche we are focused on creating premium pistachio products that deliver on taste, quality, and versatility,” Roxana Saidi tells VegNews. “Our customers love our non-dairy milk flavors, but as pistachio fans ourselves we felt we could do more and diversify our offerings with the launch of a pistachio butter.” 

The new Pot de PisTáche—which is made with pistachios and decadent, fair trade dark chocolate, and without palm oil—was developed as a stand-alone treat or as a topper for toasts, ice creams, or pancakes. It can also be whisked into puddings or used as a filler for pastries such as croissants. 

“Pot de PisTáche represents more than a product; it’s a milestone in our journey as we pioneer yet another new category with pistachios at the forefront,” Saidi says. “With Pot de PisTáche, we are offering our customers a delectable, oil-free treat that’s perfect for the holidays and can live at the center of every table.” 

4Vegan butter fit for mermaids

If you’re looking for even more exciting things to spread on your toast then PlantBaby’s new Mermaid Butter might be your jam. Made with a healthy dose of spirulina, the aqua-hued seed and oat butter expands on PlantBaby’s line of butter, which also includes an Original flavor it launched this summer. 

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Since its launch in 2021, PlantBaby has demonstrated remarkable growth, doubling its revenue year after year, accruing $6 million in its first two years of operation. 

The company’s flagship product, Kiki Milk, has gained nationwide popularity, and through a partnership with iHerb, it is set to become available in over 180 countries. PlantBaby is also expanding its distribution across the United States to include nearly 100 Wegman’s Food Markets.

“We are dedicated to delivering high-quality products that resonate with people worldwide,” PlantBaby Co-founder Alex Abelin said in a statement. “Our success can be attributed to our unwavering commitment to ingredient and nutritional integrity and our ability to listen to our customers and respond with desirable products.”

“As PlantBaby goes international with Kiki Milk, we hope our products add value to families across the globe,” Abelin said. 

This approach has led to international expansion and a positive impact on families worldwide. The company’s achievements include winning the Good Housekeeping 2023 Best Snack Award and an honorable mention in Fast Company’s World Changing Ideas Award for Food.

The Mermaid Butter is notable for its high protein, magnesium, iron, and calcium content, and can be blended with water to create blue milk, à la Star Wars. 

5Vegan tropical piranha sushi?

Plant-based innovators are already pushing the boundaries of what seafood can be. But this week, Canadian company Woop4 is completely turning seafood in its head with the launch of vegan tropical piranha.

While the predatory fish is known for eating others, its vegan version was created to spark conversation about how creative plant-based fish can be. The vegan piranha is made from rice protein and konjac and gets its yellowish hue from carrot powder. 

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The Montreal-based company’s offerings also include a range of vegan fish products such as salmon, smoked salmon, and tuna, all of which feature high omega-3 and plant proteins.

To complement its fish alternatives, Woop4 is also launching a line of seven vegan mayonnaises in unique flavors such as pineapple, sriracha, and maple. Once all the holiday cheer clears, we might have to get into plant-based sushi platters in the new year.

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