Bright Like Blue Diamond
It’s a lot better to grab a handful of almonds in a time of snacking need than it is to grab a candy bar. We all know this. That doesn’t make the decision to do so any easier, so how do you dress those boring little rocks up in a way that makes them edible? Blue Diamond Almonds are on top of it, slinging more flavors than we know what to do with. Thanks to this handy variety pack, I was able to try 12 of them; here’s how they stack up.
Prices and availability are subject to change.
Best: Wasabi & Soy Sauce
$10.92 from Amazon
Love. These. If you left a bunch of almonds soaking in wasabi and soy sauce all night, but they managed to retain their crunch, I imagine this is what they would taste like. The wasabi flavor is in full force, but the sting of the horseradish isn’t overpowering at all. I imagine people of all spice tolerances could make a dent in a bag of these things. At this point, I can’t imagine snacking on any other type of almond. My two thumbs are emphatically up.
2. Habanero BBQ
$9.33 from Amazon
I assume nobody will be surprised to learn I was a huge Corn Nuts fan. The seasoning on these Habanero BBQ almonds — which are, once again, barely spicy — reminds me a whole lot of Corn Nuts. I love the BBQ flavor here, and though I wish they had more of a kick, I like ‘em very much.
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$6.98 from Amazon
Mmmm. This is a nice, smoky, barbecue experience. I honestly wouldn’t hate to eat a few of these alongside a beautiful piece of brisket and some mac and cheese. Better yet, crush some up and bake them on top of your mac. You could pop these onto the tables at a brewery for a nice beer snack, too.
4. Salt ‘n Vinegar
$9.33 from Amazon
I suspect this varies from bag to bag, but I’d love a little more salt and a little less vinegar. Otherwise, this is pretty solid and I’d even consider grabbing this if I saw it staring me in the face at 7-Eleven.
5. Spicy Dill Pickle
$10.80 from Amazon
I don’t often dive down the pickle-flavored rabbit hole, but I like these. There’s definitely a little bit of heat in this seasoning, and though the briny pickle aroma is a little jarring at first, it grows on you pretty quickly. I’m into it.
$3.14 from Amazon
Here’s the thing about an almond. It’s not sticky or covered in olive oil, so it’s hard to get powder to adhere to it. For the most part, these seasonings just slide right off, leaving your fingers a Hot Cheeto-style mess. I just wish these Sriracha almonds were Hot Cheeto-style spicy. Crank up the heat, Blue Diamond. How is the pickle flavor spicier than Sriracha?
7. Sweet Thai Chili
$10.80 from Amazon
I feel once again robbed of flavor. Even after coating these almonds in as much powder as I could, it was hard to extract anything. I love Thai sweet chili sauce. I wish these tasted like that.
8. Roasted Salted
$8.78 from Amazon
I think it’s going to be hard for any “unflavored” almond to top these little nuggets right here. The Roasted Salted almonds are crunchy, full of roasty flavor, and not overly salty. If you’re craving a classic almond, look no further. This is your champion.
9. Lightly Salted
$11.63 from Amazon
Though these are a step up from the Whole Naturals, I’m still not floored. If you want a low-sodium, semi-healthy snack, this’ll do. I see the utility here, but I’m probably not reaching for it.
$15.20 from Amazon
I don’t have a clue what’s going on here. Are these for dessert? Are these part of a charcuterie board? Trail mix? Maybe trail mix. They’re purple, which is generally a no-go for me in terms of things that I eat, and sort of taste like a yogurt-covered almond drenched in artificial blueberry flavoring. I don’t despise these as much as I thought I might, but there’s no way on this green Earth that I’d eat these again.
11. Toasted Coconut
$8.19 from Amazon
I’m not wild about coconuts. The only reason these aren’t in last place is that those Whole Naturals are so awful. That said, if you like coconut, these are probably for you, because they taste very much like real coconut.
12. Whole Natural
$9.77 from Amazon
I’m serious: Who is this for? A single Whole Natural has gotta be the most dry, bland, lifeless thing you can eat. They’re not even crunchy. I’ll be picking these little bits out of my teeth for weeks.
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