The Guilt-free Truth about Truffles

From ingredients to packaging, this sweet treat offers a healthy twist on snacking
Photographs by Jenna Belevender

A bundle of Trueffles could easily be mistaken for a handful of decadent chocolates — only you can eat these luxurious treats and not feel guilty about it.

Packaged to perfection, the healthy candy alternatives are meant to be kind to your body and your taste buds alike. Unlike a traditional truffle, this twist on the classic is a delightful combination of fruits, nuts, seeds, and spices.

A minimal ingredient list is no indication of minimal flavor. In fact, the non-GMO, vegan, grain-free, gluten-free, soy-free, corn-free, dairy-free formula with no added sugar or oil, is what puts the “true” in Trueffle — a healthier alternative to the chocolatey treat it’s inspired by. “It’s ‘Trueffle’ for truthful truffles,” says Josee-Anne Lafrance, the Trueffles creator.

The vegan, dairy-free treats come in flavors like Lemon Twist, Pecan Cream, and Cherry Zing.

But there’s more to the story than that. Lafrance, founder of Bisoufoods — the ecologically sound and socially conscious Detroit-based company — has always been passionate about healthy eating. Having grown up in Montreal with very little processed foods, Lafrance is dedicated to nutritious and sustainable eating and sees value in knowing exactly what goes into your body. Bisoufoods products reflect that transparency, with each element of the Trueffle connecting to a sustainable source.

In addition to offering healthy snacks, Bisoufoods, which launched last May, also gives back to the community. Every container of Trueffles sold provides one nutritious meal to a family in need in metro Detroit.

“Even though we’re just getting started, we’re very committed to our mission,” Lafrance says. “Regardless of how much money we make, we hope to really make a difference in the community of Detroit, to promote healthy eating, and to be socially conscious.” Lafrance’s involvement with Forgotten Harvest, a nonprofit dedicated to fighting hunger and food waste in metro Detroit, was a major source of inspiration, and is now an organization to which sales of the Trueffles benefits.

Lafrance’s travels to Tokyo inspired the packaging for her confections. She appreciated how everyday items were perfectly wrapped and seemingly transformed into works of art through simple details in presentation. She brings this approach to her own delicacies. The metallic wrappers that envelop each Trueffle are certified compostable and made of renewable resources — a glitzy exterior that’s equally as luxurious as it is kind to the earth.

Every component, from the artwork to the treat itself, is deeply intentional. A container of Trueffles features original artwork by local artists Daniela Pianigiani and Lakshmi Shetti, who designed the botanic labels that illustrate the Trueffle flavors: Cherry Zing, Pecan Dream, and Lemon Twist.

Josee-Ann Lafrance is the founder of Detroit-based Bisoufoods.

Creating the recipe was an ongoing process, with multiple taste tests along the way. “I was really just making them for myself,” Lafrance says. As a health-conscious eater with a dairy intolerance, she concocted what she likens to a power ball without the added protein, to satisfy her sweet tooth. “You have one or two and it’s a nice little treat.”

Just as they were when she started making them in her kitchen, Trueffles are made of true ingredients sourced mainly from organic facilities and hand-rolled from scratch. “I like their simplicity,” she says.

Lafrance and her team work closely with nutritionists to make sure that each bite, 50 calories or less, is packed with as many vitamins and minerals as possible. Trueffles help boost intake of essentials like antioxidants, flavonoids, fiber, and more.

“I think the whole concept of giving a gift that’s a healthy [dessert] alternative and socially and environmentally conscious, is a nice way to see it,” says Lafrance who includes a handwritten note with a special message inside each box of Trueffles. “That’s really what it’s all about.”

Though she can’t quite share the next product that she has in mind, we can be sure that Lafrance and the Bisoufoods team are on a mission to create a healthier Detroit, one truthful truffle at a time.