If you’ve ever dropped your bagel cream cheese side down, you’ll appreciate Bagel O’s, the best new whole grain product I saw at this week’s National Restaurant Association show in Chicago. Bagel O’s are round spheres of bagel dough, with the cream cheese stuffed into the middle. Think of them as the Munchkin of bagels. They come in several varieties, including our favorite: whole grain with herbed cream cheese.

Another favorite from the show was the Cuore Mio Grilled Vegetable Ravioli from Carla’s Pasta. It’s a whole wheat pasta stuffed with grilled eggplant, red peppers, edamame, zucchini, and spinach, mixed with golden raisins, flaxseed, garlic and romano and ricotta cheeses, and it’s truly scrumptious. It’s named “Cuore Mio” — my heart — to reflect its wonderful heart-healthy ingredients.

Whole grain products are definitely hot, according to manufacturers we talked to at the show. “We’re selling white buns and whole grain buns about 50/50 to our national chain customers,” said one vendor, while another told us, “If you roll out a white bread, you have to have it in wheat too – they ask for it.” (Cynthia – May 21, 2008)

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