Seena Chriti dreamed of owning her own artisanal food company just to re-create one beloved product. “I grew up in Mexico eating a street snack called alegrias, made with puffed amaranth and honey or chocolate,” she says. “Amaranth was a staple of many Mesoamerican cultures, particularly the Mayans and Aztecs. They built statues made with amaranth and honey, which they used in religious ceremonies and then consumed.”
Religious adoration aside, Chriti is making a healthier version of the childhood treat with her business, Paktli Foods (paktli means joy in Nahuatl, the language of the Aztecs). For her alegrias, the grain-like amaranth seed is combined with quinoa and millet, and heated to a crunchy, toasted texture before being mixed with organic chocolate—you can choose from white, milk, extra dark, or bittersweet with dried nuts and fruits. Pair it with a cup of coffee or take one with you for a snack on the go and satisfy your sweet tooth without the extra calories.