The short answer is: YES!
What the heck is Schär, you might ask? Well, it is actually a company that has been around since 1922. They started out making baby food, and in 1982, switched to making gluten-free products. They have spent the last, almost 30 years, perfecting their products based on consumer research and testing. And, they are the #1 gluten-free product… in Europe.
Yep! That’s right. In Europe.
I don’t even remember hearing of them before I attended the Celiac Disease Foundation Conference in May. Although, I must say, I do like the umlaut in their name. I have a special affinity for umlauts, you know.
What’s funny is that after I talked with Anne Lee (one of the speakers at the conference, Registered Dietitian, and Director of Nutritional Services for Schär USA), I took a look at my local Raley’s, and there were their products in the gluten-free section. Guess I just hadn’t noticed since I hadn’t seen a bunch of advertising for them.
They have actually been in the states since 2007. At least, that’s when the plant opened in New Jersey to manufacture their products here.
While I have gotten more into making my own healthier, homemade foods, I have to say, I admire Schär gluten-free products. If you read the ingredients list on their foods, you can actually read it without having to go to the dictionary or website on chemical additives. And a lot of the lists only consist of 4 or 5 items. I like that.
If you look on the Schär website, you can look at the ingredient list for any product. They also list allergen information on the side and on each product. Several products are lactose free, and from my observation, almost all, if not all, are preservative free. What an odd concept in the United States. The breads come vacuum sealed for freshness.
All of this is leading up to the disclaimer. I received a box of products from Schär to review. I am not affiliated with the company in any other way. I am not paid to endorse them. I just really liked their food.
It was actually a nice surprise. A couple of days after my birthday, a huge box showed up on our doorstep. I opened it up, and there were quite a few products for us to try. So, this will actually have to be done in a couple of posts. We are still working on eating everything. Here is what we have tried so far:
- Hazelnut Wafers
- Hazelnut Bars
- Chocolate Dipped Cookies
- Chocolate O’s
- Shortbread Cookies
- Penne Pasta
These are the real crunchy type Italian breadsticks. Not the fluffy Olive Garden type. We liked them. I used to be a fan of the fluffy ones, but I think I’ve out-grown them. These feel like an appetizer before dinner. The fluffy ones feel like dinner. And, these taste great. You really wouldn’t know they were gluten-free.
These wafers taste exactly like regular gluten-full wafers. I love wafers, so I was really happy with these. Plus, the Europeans seem to favor the hazelnut (Nutella, anyone?) And, I’m from Oregon, so I also have an affinity for hazelnuts. Although, I am used to calling them filberts.
A large version of the hazelnut wafer, covered in chocolate. Oh, yeah! Can’t get much better, as far as I’m concerned. I could go nuts on these. Pun intended.
Chocolate Dipped Cookies
These are very light and crispy. These reminded me of, dare I say it… Pepperidge Farm Milanos. I haven’t had those in so long. The Mint Milanos used to be my favorite.
I believe these cookies are their Oreo-type cookies. I’m not the biggest fan of Oreos. Too heavy. And the filling always leaves a coating on the roof of my mouth, like butter. Yuck! These don’t. Chocolate O’s are a bit lighter and the filling is less lard-y. (Not really a word, but it describes it best.)
These cookies taste like a regular shortbread cookie. Not too much I can say. They are very good. Especially if you are a shortbread cookie fan.
This penne pasta was great. It held up well. Not mushy at all. Tasted and felt like regular penne pasta. Even my two year-old loved it. He couldn’t get enough of it. We kept having to give him some off our plates because he would go through it so fast.
Well, there you have it. What we have tried so far. We have more things to try, so I will be writing another review in the future.
Take a look at your local store for Schär products. They are very tasty, and they really know what they are doing. I like the fact that they have been making gluten-free products for a while. They aren’t jumping on a band wagon. They are very particular, too. They test their ingredients and their final products. And, they seek out information from their customers. They want to make sure they are making what the customer wants and that their customers are happy.
Until later, here’s to…Living better, easily!™
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