40+ Women-Founded Food Businesses We Love to Stock From

Let’s honor International Women’s Day March 8, and always.

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March 03, 2022

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Photo by: Photography by Stephanie Gonot, Styling by Amy Taylor

Photography by Stephanie Gonot, Styling by Amy Taylor

Women deserve to be celebrated 365 days a year, and March 8, International Women’s Day, is a welcome reminder. While it may seem obvious to us now that women should be afforded equal rights and opportunities, including the right to open a business, it was only a few decades ago that it was legal to bar women from applying for credit cards or loans on the basis of their sex. Women have come a long way since then — and though the U.S. still has much to achieve before it reaches true gender equity — these dynamic, women-owned businesses are worth celebrating. Here are some of our favorite food businesses that also happen to be founded by women.

Nguyen Coffee Supply is the first Vietnamese American-owned importer and roaster of green coffee beans from Vietnam in New York. Based in Brooklyn, Sahra Nguyen roasts organic beans that are proudly sourced from a fourth-generation farmer, Mr. Ton, in Vietnam’s famous Central Highlands. Nguyen is aiming to change coffee culture in the U.S. — and bring true Vietnamese coffee direct to consumers. The company offers bold and beautiful blends of robusta and arabica beans that will have you making Vietnamese coffee, in all its styles (including mixed with condensed milk), in no time. Grab a phin filter to brew your coffee the traditional Vietnamese way, while you’re at it!

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$27.99

Who knew tuna in a can could be so chic? Leave it to founders Caroline Goldfarb and Becca Millstein to turn this American pantry staple into something stylish and something you can feel good about. Named after the daughters and wives of fisherman who sold fish at markets, and later after "brash, foul-mouthed, and brassy" women, Fishwife boasts ethically sourced, premium and delicious seafood in convenient and beautiful packaging. Try the company’s Smoked Atlantic Salmon in salmon cakes, or Wild-Caught Smoked Albacore Tuna in a tuna melt. From there, we’re sure you’ll find dozens of other excuses to crack these tins open.

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$24.99

In Farsi, Maazah means flavor. And the Sajadys are big fans of flavor. The mother and three-daughter team created a company dedicated to Afghan-style chutneys, a versatile condiment that can come in a variety of forms. Some are chunky; some are smooth. Some sweet, savory, tangy or spicy. Maazah’s current offerings are a play on Mom’s "Magic Green Sauce," a cilantro and ginger chutney with secret herbs added in. It’s simple yet addictive, plus gluten-free and vegan.

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Inspired by the founders’ childhood favorites from Belgium, this line of delicious stroopwafels, cookies and more does not disappoint. The playful packaging and wide assortment of goodies, makes the Welcome Bundle an extra-fun gift for anyone who loves sweet treats or kids who want some new snacks. We particularly love the mini stroopwafels! Plus, nearly all of the products come individually packaged, which makes them perfect for lunches or even a late-night snack.

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Named affectionately after her grandmother Estelle, also known as "Big Mama," Stephanie Summerson Hall’s company offers a modern revival of vintage-colored glasses. Inspired by the antique shop "treasure hunts" she embarked on with her grandmother, Hall brings to life dazzling colored glassware delicate cake stands, drink glasses, decanters and more. The pieces are best described as "jewels for your table" and will no doubt be the crowning glory of any spread.

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Laura O’Brien preserves a dazzling array of confitures jams, marmalades, butters that you’ll want to spread over everything. These small batch, artisanal jars are not your average jam they’ve have made it onto Oprah’s Favorite Things list three times, and standout flavor, Winter Holiday Mulled Wine Marmalade (described as "holiday on a spoon!"), won a gold medal at the Dalemain World Marmalade Awards in 2021. O’Brien keeps it simple with flavors like Wild Foraged Blueberry and Red Hot Pepper Jam (which is super hot, by the way), but also offers more whimsical creations like Strawberries & Pink Champagne. If the preserves weren’t enough already, each jar is decorated with an elegant illustration that makes them pretty enough to gift or display on your countertop.

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Sana Javeri Kadri is decolonizing the spice trade. Through Diaspora Co., Javeri Kadri is bringing sustainable, heirloom seed-grown spices from farmers straight to you. By closing the gap between source and consumer — skipping the long line of middlemen — the company is building a more equitable spice trade, and equipping cooks with fresher spices that shine with flavor most of us have been missing. Take the brand’s black peppercorn, for instance. Described as akin to a "beautiful red wine," with notes of chocolate, jam, fig and a "feisty citrusy finish," Diaspora Co.’s Aranya Pepper is so good it’s worth savoring, rather than being blithely employed. With all the dishes pepper is added to, just think of how much better everything you already eat will taste.

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Alissa Miky turns satisfying your sweet tooth into a mind boggling, luxury experience with Misaky Tokyo. These Japanese candies look like crystal jewels, but when you bite into them? They’re surprisingly soft and chewy inside. To top it off, the vibrant treats are packaged in emerald-green boxes that will make you feel like you’re plucking from a million-dollar jewelry box.

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Jeni Britton Bauer is a pioneer of artisan ice cream, and the founder and creative genius behind Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams. With an aim to bring people together and "make sparks fly" through "REALLY" great ice cream, Jeni’s collection includes unconventional flavors like Everything Bagel and ones you already know will taste amazing, like Skillet Cinnamon Roll. Drawn from flavors you love, but ones you didn’t know you could have in a pint, Jeni’s ice creams will take you somewhere special no matter which one you dig into.

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Founded by Eileen Avezzano in 1974, Eileen’s Special Cheesecake is a New York City institution. Decades later, the bakery is now run by Avezzano’s daughters, Holly Maloney and Bonnie Ponte, and still thriving. Born from a signature family recipe, one might argue that Eileen’s light, creamy, perfectly balanced sweet-tangy cakes are the ideal that all others should aspire to. Anyone who just doesn’t like cheesecake will surely be converted after a single bite. Not convinced? Try them for yourself. And luckily with nationwide shipping, these heavenly slices don’t have to be reserved for New Yorkers.

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$55

Sisters Vanessa and Kim Pham created Omsom, a company dedicated to bringing "proud, loud Asian flavors to your fingertips" with meal starter packets. Currently offered in six varieties: Larb, Lemongrass BBQ, Sisig, Yuzu Misoyaki, Spicy Bulgogi and Mala Salad, the stylishly designed packets are bound to become your next pantry staple. Each one comes with its own set of directions, but they all generally require just a few fresh ingredients and a packet — filled with the exact amount of all the sauces, oils and seasonings you need to make quick, delicious meals that pay proper homage to the cultures behind them.

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When it comes to delicious jams, Trade Street Jam Co. is a must-visit. The woman- and Black-owned business, founded by Ashley Rouse, has quickly become a fan-favorite on the internet, thanks largely to the unique flavors of the company’s jams (Smoked Yellow Peach and Plum + Rose are two of our favorites), and its playful experimentation with ingredients, like kiwi, crushed red peppers, dried figs, rose water and so much more. In fact, there's a good chance you've probably seen Trade Street’s boldly-colored jars all over Instagram already, and for good reason, too. Unlike other jams, which are full of preservatives and pectin – giving them that notorious globby and gummy texture Trade Street’s jams are full of fresh fruits, minimal sugar and have an ultra-smooth, butter-like consistency. This means you can use the jams for much more than spreading across a piece of toasted bread. The jams are also canned hot and are made by hand in very small batches, which means they can sit on your shelf for up to one year without going bad. Though, something tells us they definitely won’t last that long...

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When long-lost sisters Robin and Andréa McBride met in 2005, they bonded over their love of wine. Today, they own the largest Black-owned wine company in the United States. Order the McBride Sister’s Black Girl Magic Collection and their award-winning SHE CAN Collection, which supports the SHE CAN Professional Development Fund. The fund aims to promote the professional advancement of Black women in the wine industry thereby helping to close the gender and race gap — by providing fund-awarded scholarships.

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At Vosges Haut-Chocolat, eating chocolate is more than a moment of guilty pleasure, it’s a way to open up your mind, expand your palette and interact with the world around you in a more loving and caring way. The woman-owned business, which is operated by chocolatier Katrina Markoff, is known for adding a spiritual and alchemical element to each and every one of their chocolate truffle boxes, promising fans a snacking experience unlike any other. Their Ritual Collection is a perfect example of just that. With 6 different variations to choose from, each box in the collection seeks to help its recipient achieve a different goal, including inner peace, new beginnings, self-love, prosperity, protection and joy. The chocolates found in each of these boxes also highlight ingredients that are said to have healing properties, like turmeric, absinthe, matcha and rose water.

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On a mission to bring the "dark as hell, strong as death, sweet as love" Turkish coffee and chocolate she grew up with to the U.S., Melis Aydogan created Rüya Coffee. Named after the Turkish word for "dream," the Cincinnati-based business is inspired by Aydogan’s parents’ immigrant dream, as well as a hope to "change the narrative of immigrants in the U.S.," for all "to feel welcome." One way of changing that narrative? Over Turkish coffee and through the cathartic intimacy of a centuries-old practice — tasseography a.k.a. interpreting the patterns of coffee grounds to tell fortunes. Virtual fortune telling sessions from Aydogan herself are included with Rüya’s Turkish Coffee Kits.

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You’ll find Winterton Farms tucked away in a little corner of the Catskills region – about 90 minutes north of New York City. The lavender that co-owner Erika Malmgreen grows makes delicious blueberry lavender jam and heavenly lavender pine soap (the business distills all its own essential oils at the farm). Erika also hosts a Tentrr camp site at Winterton; 32-acres of streams and woods to be explored. Depending on the time of year you may find her foraging for fallen shagbark tree bark: they char the bark, make a tea with it and then turn that into a syrup. Their Shagbark Hickory Syrup is one of a kind and has a nutty, earthy and smokey taste — and can be used just like maple syrup. Supplies are limited every year and there is only local pick-up at this time for the syrup (shipping costs are hard for small businesses!). However, you can get the farm’s jam and soap shipped right to your door.

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Mambo sauce aims to provide a sweet and tangy sauce for wings and just about anything else. Growing up in Washington D.C., Arsha Jones loved mambo sauce, the city’s signature condiment. So, when she moved to the suburbs, she founded her own company to bring the sauce she was missing to her family and the masses.

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Seattle Chocolate Company is a woman-owned and powered business that strives to make the world kinder and more much more delicious — and it’s definitely succeeding, if you ask us. Owner and CEO Jean Thompson works to make incredible chocolates, improve the lives of cacao farmers, support young girls through Girls Inc. and empower customers to give back with their purchases. The company even started using compostable packaging for its truffles in 2020 and is currently in the process of transitioning its chocolate bar packaging to fully recyclable paper. Seattle Chocolate truly has something for everyone, including vegan and gluten-free options.

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Founder Shiza Shahdid believes in the power of home cooking to bring people together. And with that belief, she created Our Place and the cult-favorite Always Pan — a single pan that promises to replace eight traditional pieces of cookware — to make home cooking, and creating a welcoming table setting, a little more seamless. Currently offered in seven colors that will bring joy to everything you cook, the Always Pan keeps your kitchen uncluttered and dirty dishes to a minimum, so you can save all your energy for the important stuff: sharing meals with people you love.

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Jeanne Chan and Gloria Wong Tritasavit are co-founders (and cousins) of the San Francisco based, Asian American-, women-owned business, Harlow & Grey: A line of modern partyware and lifestyle goods that are affordable for all. After finding much success in their own respective careers in content creation, apparel design and event design, Jeanne and Gloria joined forces to create this brand, and it's been picking up speed ever since. You can find their selection of plates, napkins, cups, and more through their websites, as well as at various boutiques and stores across the country.

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Monica Sunny grew up sipping chai, a ritual woven into her family’s daily ritual. In an effort to instill the same ritual, family chai time, in her three boys, she began creating The Chai Box — a company that sells various blends of teas and spices, inspired by different regions of India. From an ode to traditional masala chai to one that smells of mangoes to another speckled with rose petals, Sunny’s wide range of blends will bring you comfort in a cup, no matter what you’re craving.

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Hawa Hassan is the author of cookbook, In Bibi’s Kitchen, and the founder of Basbaas Foods, a company bringing African-inspired sauces and condiments to your table. Hassan’s small-batch jars hit all the right notes sweet, salty, acidic, spicy, savory and they’re super versatile, too. Basbaas’ Coconut Cilantro Chutney will brighten seared chicken or fish with just a simple drizzle, or serve as a great base for salad dressing. Meanwhile, the company’s Tamarind Date Sauce is the perfect marriage of heat and sweet for any of your dipping or spreading needs.

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Merve Aydin Doran’s family has been producing olive oil in Turkey for generations, so it’s no wonder she goes through a bottle a week. Each bottle of Oleamea olive oil is made using local olives cultivated through organic farming practices, and the whole process is fueled through solar energy. To introduce your kitchen to these oils, we recommend starting with the gift pack to give the everyday oil and private select bottle a try.

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$125.00

Professional pastry chef and entrepreneur Auzerais Bellamy is the maker behind Blondery, a direct-to-consumer, virtual bakery that started with a love for blondies. Bellamy spent 10 years refining her blondie recipe, trying to conjure the spirit and generosity of a beloved childhood memory of a pecan praline candy. When she finally captured that flavor, Blondery was born, and has since grown to offer not only some joy-sparking blondies, but also some adorable cake jars and stunning 11 layer cakes to boot.

After years of working in various fine dining establishments, Bellamy also became passionate about making the pastry world a more supportive space for women and BIPOC. Through her business, she aims to create the workplace environment she felt was missing, hiring people of color and empowering them for careers in the restaurant industry.

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One bite into these handmade, small-batch cookies, and you’re transported to Maui. Started in 2012 by Mitzi Toro, a.k.a. The Maui Cookie Lady, these super-thick, chunky slices of Hawaiian heaven include local flavors like Kona Coffee Dark Choc Espresso, White Chunk Mac Nut and Pineapple Lychee Passion w/ Hibiscus Flower & White Tea. They’re available for delivery throughout the country; the only issue you’ll have is deciding how many to order.

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If you’re a frequent tea drinker, it can be difficult to find something that truly stands out. But when you give Riddle’s Tea Shoppe a try, you promise you’ll feel like you’re stepping into a fabled land one where everything from comfort to adventure can be divined from a simple blend of tea leaves, fruit, cocoa nibs and shimmery orbs of sugar. Riddle’s offers a ton of fun blends (many inspired by fantastic tales like Harry Potter), each as delicious as the next. To start, go for Gringott’s Gold, an impossibly creamy mix of chocolate, orange and black tea. Add that to a line of teas perfect for any reader, featuring flavors like Book Hangover (hazelnut) and Sequel Support (banana bread) and it’s easy to see what makes this tea shop so special. Since it’s a small business, flavors do go out of stock sometimes, but you can reach out via e-mail or sign up to be notified when they’re available again. Whatever you choose, it’s sure to be worth the wait and pure magic from the very first sip.

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Milene Jardine draws inspiration for her artisanal sweets from around the world, including a Taiwanese-inspired black plum and a Norwegian-influenced beer and cloudberry. Royals, politicians and celebrities enjoy her chocolates, and you can, too. Order Milene Jardine chocolate online, which ships nationwide.

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$41.95

What in the world is granola butter? Think of it, as Oat Haus calls it, “nut butter’s more interesting, less-nutty cousin.” While reintroducing nuts back into her diet and coming across some difficulty, founder Ali Bonar opted to create her own nut-free, oat-based butter. And now? Oat Haus offers a range of flavors from good ole Original to Strawberry Shortcake, Vanilla and Chocolate that are good enough to drizzle, slather or dunk into wherever boring old nut butter would go.

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Jing Gao is behind Fly By Jing, a Sichuan condiment company named after herself, and the "flies," or soulful, hole-in-the-wall restaurants that are so popular in her hometown of Chengdu that they "attract people like flies." Jing’s signature sauces include Sichuan Chili Crisp, Mala Spice Mix and Zhong Sauce, all of which are not necessarily traditional, but her personal takes on the famous Chinese condiments. Within her sauces, Jing says, you’ll find her story. Each one is versatile add to noodles, pizza, ice cream, anywhere you’d drizzle hot sauce over for an electrifying, one-of-a-kind zing.

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$44.99

Spa Girl Cocktails is powered by women, owned by women and made for women. It's a brand built on founder Karen Haines' desire to create a low-calorie cocktail filled with clean ingredients as well as an experience that encourages women to be the life of the party. Spa Girl sips are made with all-natural flavors and extracts, pure cane sugar, corn-based vodka (sourced from the Midwest) and clean distilled water; you won't find any artificial flavors, colors or sweeteners in these drinks. All of the San Diego-based company's products are vegan and gluten-free, and they’re made using environmentally friendly manufacturing practices and finished with recyclable packaging. Thanks to Haines' mixologist heart and CEO Alisa Marie Beyer's passion for improving products that are meaningful to women, Spa Girl has become a passionate brand that feels more like a lifestyle: One sip of a Spa Girl ready-to-drink cocktail and you can't help but feel like you're watching a California sunset with your best girlfriends.

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Mississippi’s first and only meadery is bringing a bit of sweetness to the South. What began as a hobby for Jeri Carter turned into a love affair with the honey-based wine. Her award-winning bottles, which can be shipped nationwide, come in blackberry and grape varieties.

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$36.00

After years of working in the notoriously grueling fashion industry, Lisa Li needed to find more moments of Zen. During a transformative trip to Shangri-La with her mom, Li tried a rose tea the locals drink, and in it found a “whole new floral paradise universe.” Now, Li aims to bring you your well-deserved, daily dose of calm and comfort in a sensorial experience with The Qi’s blooming flower teas.

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We don’t know about you, but we definitely scream for ice cream, especially Noona’s Ice Cream. Hannah Bae started Noona’s, meaning 'big sister' in Korean, to give ice cream lovers culturally diverse flavors, including Thai Iced Tea and Black Sesame. As their website mentions, "Diversity is delicious!"

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$21.99

Canned cocktails are all the rage, and Phreshly brings fresh flavors to the mix in fun, sophisticated cans. This proudly Black-owned business sources fruits and herbs from minority-owned farms for the brand’s bourbon Bay Lemonade and gin G’iddem cans.

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Summer and Kam Johnson started keeping bees and harvesting honey to help with their son Zach’s allergies. In just a few years, what began as a home project grew into a buzzing family business. Today, Zach and Zoe offers an array of infused, raw wildflower honey. Savory beetroot goes great on steak; lavender brings calm to sweets and teas; ginger adds a zing to any cold remedy. The farm also sells bee pollen and honeycomb. Believe us when we say this is truly some of the best honey you’ll ever taste. You don’t know what good honey is until you’ve tasted Zach and Zoe’s.

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This Insta-famous, artisanal olive oil and vinegar company started as a California dream. Aishwarya Iyer uses olives and fruits from local, family-run farms in the Golden State to create products like Lucid, a lemon olive oil, and Rapture, a balsamic vinegar made with California grapes and blackberries. Dip fresh bread cubes into any combination of the oils and vinegars for an appetizer from the heavens.

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Let’s face it, you can never have too many condiments in your kitchen. Created by chef and cookbook author Chitra Agrawal, Brooklyn Delhi channels her Indian roots to make slammin’ sauces like Tomato Achaar, Guntur Sannam Hot Sauce and delicious curries like Dad’s Savory Tomato Curry Simmer Sauce.

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There are 1,200 licensed cheesemakers in Wisconsin, and just 60 of them are women. Marieke Penterma is one of those women, and she creates traditional Dutch Gouda cheese. On top of crafting award-winning cheeses, she makes sure every leadership role in her company is filled by a woman.

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When Mee McCormick was diagnosed with a life-threatening combination of auto-immune diseases, she sought healing in the kitchen. And so Pinewood Kitchen was created to sell microbiome-friendly soups, jams and sauces to the Nashville area. Recently, she’s started selling her vegan and gluten-free cakes nationwide.

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Thirty years ago, Marygrace Sexton took it upon herself to bring her husband Bobby Sexton’s dream to fruition. Bobby ran his family’s fourth-generation Florida citrus packing house, but was too busy to produce freshly squeezed orange juice. So Marygrace, with the knowledge and access to what makes a good Florida orange, began an orange juice business herself. You probably recognize the simple design and clear bottles of Natalie’s Juice, named after Marygrace’s eldest daughter. And if you’ve had a sip of the family-operated company’s OJ, you already know it’s some of the best on the market. If you haven’t? Grab a bottle immediately!

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$28.99

Move over LaCroix, a new sparkling water has emerged on the scene. Made by Nicole Bernard Dawes, founder of Late July Organic Snacks, her Watermelon Mint sparkling water and homebrewed Peach Black Tea flavors are all organic.

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Jenelle Manzi’s energy bar promises a natural boost that doesn’t taste like birdseed (phew). Nor does it come with a sugar crash. Created by the veteran New York City Ballet dancer, who sought healthy performance fuel while battling food allergies, Get Golden is a gluten-free, kosher, and vegan pick-me-up. Nuts and seeds are held together with homemade Turmeric Coconut Butter "Caramel" to make for a salty-sweet, chewy bar.

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$24.99

This hip-hop inspired tea brand works to introduce African holistic remedies into the tea business. At Ivy’s Tea Co., Shanae Jones sells organic, locally-sourced teas like Breathe, What The Flu?, Not Coffee and Sister Sister along with Trap China and #TrapTea Spoons, perfect for stirring her organic herb-infused honey varieties.

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Pipcorn uses heirloom kernels, which when popped, result in tinier popcorn pieces than what you might be used to. The salty, addictive kernels quickly became one of our favorite snacks and one of Oprah’s favorite things. The family-owned business, run by Jen Martin, Teresa Tsou and Jeff Martin, sources its heirloom kernels from family-run farms that practice sustainable farming methods. Available for order throughout the country, try their kettle corn flavor — trust us!

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This online marketplace has a mission: to make it easy for customers to buy from small, local farms. Julia Nirro created MilkRun in Portland, Oregon, to deliver fruits, vegetables and meats from smaller farms directly to customers. Since then, they’ve expanded to Seattle and Austin with plans to grow to Dallas and Houston this year.

$60 for 6 ice cream sandwiches

Looking for more than your average chocolate and vanilla ice cream sandwich? Coolhaus has got you — with its collection of inventive ice cream, packed between some of your favorite tried-and-true cookies. Salted caramel ice cream between Snickerdoodles? Yes. Creamy s’mores between classic chocolate chip? Check. When Natasha Case and Freya Estreller founded the company, they sought to create vibrantly packaged, high-quality frozen desserts. And that they did. In addition to whipping up ice cream, they seek to represent positive change, by way of strategic partnerships, fundraisers and speaking engagements that promote women leadership and community building.

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