It's giveaway time again at FFP! I love giving you all the opportunity to win some of the great foods that I get the opportunity to try. From this point on, when I review a product, I'm going to try my best to actually have a voice conversation with the people behind it. I really care about the story behind food, the ingredients, the practices and the people. This is what I want to share with you at FFP.
So let me introduce you to Ladera Granola, their story, ingredients, and people.
I was asked to try out Ladera and happily agreed since I love granola. I honestly had low expectations because most granola, well, just tastes like granola. I really like homemade granola and was intrigued that Ladera started from a mom's recipe, in her kitchen, trying to fuel her family with healthy, whole foods. I dig that.
Well, on my first bight of Ladera Original Granola, I was very pleasantly surprised. I don't know how they did it, but it literally tastes like is just came out of the oven (minus being hot). It is so darn delicious. It's fresh and crunchy with just the perfect mix of intriguing flavors.
The ingredients and nutrition facts are also pretty steller. Ladera contains a total of 8 ingredients: whole grain oats, almonds, olive oil, maple syrup, pecans, brown sugar, spices and salt. That's it! And here are the nutrition stats per 1/4 cup serving (which is actually the perfect amount to pour into my yogurt): 150 calories, 9 g fat, 1g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 25 mg sodium, 15 g carbohydrate, 3 g dietary fiber, 4 g sugar, and 4g protein.
Besides great flavor and nutrition, this company is about quality, all-natural ingredients, sustainability and whole foods. These are also reasons why I like what they are doing. Read more about what Ladera Granola stands for here.
In order to bring you the back story of this granola, I asked to interview Ladera's CEO, Brian Tetrud. I really enjoyed our conversation because it solidified that this granola and company may just be something special. When I asked what made Ladera Granola special, he said it was because it's his mom's recipe that's low in sugar, minimally processing, no persavatives, and just tastes really good. Other companies are about trying to make their granolas as healthy as possible with added "super foods", exotic fruits and seeds. While this is all fine and good, Ladera is first about great flavor and simplicity and as a result, has great nutritional value. They have tried to use more nuts than other granolas to provide essential omega-3 fatty acids and increase the protein content.
My other question for Brian was about the sourcing of his ingredients. I really want companies to be transparent about this topic and he had no reservation, and was even proud, of many of the places they purchase from. In fact, he said that it is just making more sense for them to go straight to the farmers to purchase. I couldn't agree more. As an example, they purchase their maple syrup direct from Vermont and their almonds and pecans nearby their facility in California.
I'm very excited to offer two readers the chance to try this delicious granola. It's being sold in stores in California but otherwise only available through their website. While you might not think there's much of a difference between granolas, as Brian stated, "Once you try it, you get it." It's true.
Contest runs from April 1st to April 9th
Disclosure: Ladera Granola provided me with a bag of their product to sample free of charge. I was not compensated for writing this post nor have any other professional relationship with the company. a