I admit that when I open a bag of granola, I pick out the prized big clusters to eat first.
I’m sure I’m not alone in this.
In fact, KIND Healthy Snacks knows most people do the same. That’s why the New York company makes a line of Healthy Grains Clusters. Think granola — but with big chunks throughout the bag — some as large as 2 1/2 inches across.
They come in six varieties: Peanut Butter Whole Grains Clusters, Vanilla Blueberry Clusters with Flax Seeds, Cinnamon Oat Clusters with Flax Seeds, Maple Walnut Clusters with Chia & Quinoa, Dark Chocolate & Cranberry Clusters, and Oats & Honey Clusters with Toasted Coconut.
Recently, I had a chance to try some samples.
The clusters are made with whole grains, including amaranth, quinoa, oats, millet, buckwheat and brown rice. As a result, they have a very hearty flavor, and a natural, toasty nuttiness from all the grains.
They’re not super sweet, either, like so many other granolas on the market. Even the Dark Chocolate & Cranberry one is just sweet enough, thanks in balance to the slight bitter, earthy edge of the chocolate. The Oats & Honey one tastes almost like a crunchy oatmeal cookie. The peanut butter one has a salty, savory quality, along with peanut halves sprinkled throughout. My favorite might be the Maple Quinoa because the maple flavor compliments the grains so well.
A one-third cup serving has about 120 to 130 calories, depending upon the variety.
An 11-ounce bag is about $5 and available at GNC and Walmart.
It’s perfect for sprinkling on top of yogurt or a bowl of oatmeal for added texture. Or just eat it out of hand, as clusters are so made for doing.
CONTEST: One lucky Food Gal reader will win three bags of KIND Healthy Grains Clusters. Entries, limited to those in the continental United States, will be accepted through midnight PST Nov. 23. Winner will be announced Nov. 25.
How to win?
Just tell me about a random act of kindness you performed lately. Most memorable answer wins.
Here’s my own reply:
“It was a small gesture. But we as women can relate, I’m sure. I was trudging down the stairs at the gym after a work out, when I noticed that the woman walking in front of me, dressed very nicely in a chic skirt suit ensemble, had the belt of her jacket totally twisted behind her. When we got to the staircase landing, I tapped her on the shoulder and told her about the mishap, offering to fix it for her. She accepted. So I un-bottoned the back belt of her jacket, turned it around and re-buttoned it the right way. She gave me a wide smile and a gracious thank you before we went our separate ways. It made me feel better than any endorphin-inducing workout ever could.”
WINNER OF LAST WEEK’S CONTEST: In the previous Food Gal contest, I asked you to tell me what you most look forward to feasting on at this time of year. Best answer will win “A Feast for Merry Treats” collection of artisan sweets from Gift A Sweet.
Grace, who wrote, “I’ve always been one to use the dinner plate for my desserts and the dessert plate for my dinner. Whose idea was it to make dessert plates so small? nonsense.”