Tucson granola company Four Kings Kitchen aims to help your health

Tucson granola company Four Kings Kitchen aims to help your health

A couple of Wisconsinites arrived in Tucson from Austin, Texas, three years ago, bringing with them their interest in holistic health and wellness.

For nutritionist April King, whose private practice is mostly mobile, and licensed massage therapist Earl King, the logical next step was to develop a food to help their clients follow their eating plans whether that’s a paleo diet, ketogenic diet, vegetarian or vegan diet, or even a more mainstream diet that simply focuses on good health.

The husband-and-wife team started Four Kings Kitchen, which has a line of three flavors of hand-crafted granola: Original, with cinnamon-vanilla flavor; pumpkin spice with apple, and “superfood sweet heat,” which features cacao, goji berries and cayenne. “We’re working on a fourth flavor,” says April King, “and we’ll reveal that when we get it dialed in.”

If Earl and April are the two Kings, who are the other two? That’d be their cats, Skat and Charm, April says. Improving one of the cat’s diet reversed its diabetes, she says. For her, that confirmed that everything that goes into our bodies affects our health.

So when she and Earl set out to develop their granola, they decided to use premium nuts and seeds. “No peanuts, no filler,” she says. “We’re careful to source the ingredients responsibly and ethically, as well as with an eye to quality.”

The granola uses steam-pasteurized almonds, walnuts, pecans, macadamia and hazelnuts, all full of healthy fats, which help the granola satisfy its eater. The nuts are toasted to provide more flavor, and the granola itself is hand-made in small batches by slow-roasting the mixture.

Moreover, rather than using oats as the bulk (the classic definition of granola includes oats) the Kings decided to use pumpkin seeds instead. The granola also features coconut and coconut oil and is sweetened with monk fruit and erythritol, two natural sugar alternatives. Traditionally, granola is packed with oil and sugar, but the Four Kings Kitchen brand decided not to use those ingredients.

Such high-quality ingredients naturally make Four Kings Kitchen’s granola more expensive than the cheaper stuff you can buy at the grocery store.

At $15 for a 10-ounce bag, this might not be your daily breakfast, although it makes a great one. It’s so satisfying that a little goes a long way.

“We use it on salads, as a yogurt topping, on top of sweet potatoes, and some of the customers use it right on their oatmeal to provide some crunch,” says April. “It’s somewhere between a snack and a breakfast. It’s a great ‘on-the-go’ food.”

The company’s name is transitioning to April’s Granola in the next month or so, King says.

For now, though, the company’s Four Kings Kitchen granola is available at the Sunday Rillito Park Heirloom Farmers Market from 8 a.m. to noon, the Thursday Sierra Vista farmers market from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Veterans Memorial Park, the Food Conspiracy Co-op at 412 N. 4th Ave., and at dedicated., a gluten-free bakery and coffee house at 4500 E. Speedway Blvd.

We’re nearing the end of peach season here in Arizona but I saw some beauties at the farmers markets this week. Some vendors offered a “buy 1 pound, get 1 pound free” special that was too good to pass up. I made a few jars of peach preserves and another couple of pints of spiced peaches to enjoy this winter, but the rest of them went into these easy parfaits.

They’re just right for a simple dessert that’s cool and refreshing on a blistering day. You could also make these parfaits with another fruit, berries, plums, and so on. Apples wouldn’t be colorful enough, I think.

No-cook peach-granola parfaits

Makes about 4 servings




Richer than yogurt and thicker than whipped cream, lightly sweetened sour cream separates the layers of these showy fruit-granola parfaits. They’re quick and easy to assemble, and they’ll hold well for up to a day in the refrigerator. A little almond extract (or Amaretto, if you have it) plays up the peaches’ flavor.


2 cups sour cream

1/4 cup sugar

1/2 teaspoon almond extract or 2 tablespoons Amaretto

4 pounds fresh peaches, peeled, pitted and diced, about 4 cups

Next week: Stephen Paul of Whiskey Del Bac talks about the distillery’s uniquely Arizonan whiskeys.

New restaurants that have opened in Tucson this year

Robin Mather is a longtime food journalist and the author of “The Feast Nearby.” Follow her blog as she writes her third book, “The Feast of the Dove,” at www.thefeastofthedove.com.


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