May is a month full of celebration. For these next 31 days, we get to honor Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month. Along with going to regional events, parades, and festivals, you can also spend your money at AAPI-owned businesses, both small and large. We’ve gathered our absolute favorite food and kitchen-based brands founded by AAPI entrepreneurs. You definitely need AAPI-owned brands in your pantries ASAP.

During this month, you can also donate to various AAPI-based charities including the Asian Americans For Equality, the Stop AAPI Hate organization, the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum, and more. Be sure to also look out for local organizations in your area making a difference who require volunteers or donations.

Brightland Oil

Want to elevate your vinaigrettes, bread dipping oils, and olive oil coffee, look no further than Brightland. “It’s my wish that our products provide abundant nourishment to you and the people you love for many breakfasts, lunches and dinners to come,” founder Aishwarya Iyer shares of her California-based company. Brightland doesn’t just sell rich EVOO in gorgeous bottles. Iyer’s company also offers an array of flavored oils including garlic, chili, and rosemary infusions, as well as various honey flavors and vinegar to add to your cabinet. They even recently launched a pizza oil, ideal for adding an herbaceous swirl on top of your pie.

Our Place Cookware

Spruce up your kitchen with some beautiful, long-lasting table and kitchenware from Our Place. Co-founder and co-CEO Shiza Shahid is just like me, and by that, I mean we both hate having too many dirty pans. She created the Always Pan to be deep enough to boil water, and shallow enough to flip a little midnight grilled cheese. Aside from this basically perfect kitchen invention, Our Place also offers baking sheets, pots, plates, bowls, cutting boards, and more kitchen necessities.

Kasama Rum

Grab your own small-batch liquor for less than $50 with Kasama Rum. Founder Alexandra Dorda named the rum “Kasama” as it translates to “together” in Filipino, reflecting her heritage. Bring all your friends together with fancy, fruity drinks with these recipes.

Saigon Drip

Have you ever had Vietnamese coffee? If you haven’t, you need to order some right now, and then order your own kit from Saigon Drip. Made with a slow-drip coffee dispenser, the coffee pours directly into your glass to mix with sweetened condensed milk for a creamy and rich beverage that’s fabulous hot or iced. Brand founder Sang Nguyen “wanted to put an end to coffee snobbery and introduce coffee drinkers to a coffee type and preparation that has been enjoyed in Vietnam for generations.” I can’t wait to have my fill of this coffee so soon.


Calling all chocolate lovers! Load up your cart with ChocoVivo candy bars immediately. “What makes the journey special is that through the years of trying to figure out how to stone-grind, I developed a relationship with my grower,” founder and owner Patricia Tsai shared. "It was important for me to know where I get my cacao beans.” From delectable bar flavors including Hazelnuts & Sea Salt and Cherries + Almonds + Black Peppercorns, all the way to cacao nibs for baking, and even cocoa-based skincare, you will find thrilling and luscious gifts for yourself, friends, and family here.

Numa Foods

Mother and daughter team Jane and Joyce Zhu collaborated to make an all-natural candy option with low amounts of sugar and high protein counts, so that Joyce, who has an autoimmune disease, could still satisfy her sweet tooth. Together, they made Numa Foods, which offers customers various flavors of taffy including Original Creme, Strawberries and Cream, Creamy Coconut, and more. Plus, don’t forget to add some of their yummy peanut bars to your cart, too. This is definitely going to be my new go-to study snack.

Yobo Soju

Upgrade your bar cart with some fabulous Yobo Soju offerings from Korean American entrepreneur Carolyn Kim. With its beginnings in 2015, Yobo has grown their product line to include a wide range of soju flavors, apéritifs, and even canned cocktails. Their K Town Soju line boasts unique flavors such as Grape + Ginger and Peach + Chili Pepper. Check out ways to transform these spirits into a fancy, crowd-pleasing cocktail.

#SpoonTip: New to drinking soju? Check out our favorite flavors to start with.

Fly By Jing

Fly By Jing is a cool brand for hot girlies. You may recognize the name from the recent Fishwife x Fly By Jing crossover — a tinned smoked salmon made with Fly By Jing’s signature Sichuan Chili Crisp. L.A.-based founder Jing Gao is all about sharing the “amazing flavors of my hometown Chengdu and its famous fly restaurants.” You’ll find a wealth of sauces, spices, chili oils, and more at this store. Plus, Fly By Jing has trendy merch items, including a Tribute Pepper Candle. Personally, I need to try Fly By Jing’s Emperor’s Sichuan Pepper Chocolate Cake Kit ASAP.

Sisterfriend Jewelry

Looking to treat yourself or someone you love with a food-themed gift? You have to check out the gold and silver charms at Sisterfriend. Founders Lisa Maita and Kelli Mercado make a variety of Kawaii-inspired charms, rings, pendants, and beyond. You’ll adore their collection of culinary jewelry including this martini glass, tinned fish, fried egg, and beyond.


You need Bowlcut’s Chili Crisp in your pantry as a condiment staple. Founders Crystal Ung, Adrian Ng, and Will Kang officially launched their brand in spring 2022 and have been heralded by food lovers and food publications ever since. Use their Chili Crisp as a topping for dumplings, noodles, rice, and more. Plus, use the brand’s Char Siu BBQ sauce to marinate your meat and veggies for a perfect weeknight dinner. At only $13.99, you’ll make a cost-effective choice for a fabulous product for a growing brand. Bowlcut’s even got you covered with an array of recipes and a group chat you can join for exclusives, new product info, and beyond!

The Boiis Co.

Are you as obsessed with mochi as we are? Make a stop at NYC’s own The Boiis Co., which specializes in baked mochi desserts. Founded by Kert Lasdoce and Rivy-Major Q. Oponda, this bakery is famous for its “Mooks” – mochi-filled cookies. With flavors such as ube, salted caramel, matcha, and more. Plus, with nationwide shipping, you don’t even have to step foot in the Big Apple to sample these beloved treats.