Monday, May 2, 2016

Celebrate Cinco de Mayo in Spicy Vegan Style!

From pulled pork sandwiches and mac & cheese to perfect pies and biscuits and gravy, how about satisfying vegan comfort foods that are even better than the originals for this Cinco de Mayo? Celebrate in vegan style!

Try Upton’s Naturals’ new line of heat-and-serve, pre-seasoned jackfruit for cooking up mouthwatering and cruelty-free pulled pork sandwiches and carnitas.

Upton’s Naturals is the first company to make pre-seasoned, heat-and-serve, natural jackfruit nationally available to the U.S. market. Using only simple, recognizable ingredients, Upton’s Naturals’ jackfruit offers a good source of fiber, is completely free of cholesterol, gluten, soy, oil, GMO’s, and artificial flavors, and 100% vegan. 

The lineup includes Bar-B-Que and Chili Lime Carnitas, along with new-to-market Thai Curry and an Original variety.

The decision to create a jackfruit product happened when Upton’s Naturals’ founder Dan Staackmann and his girlfriend (also Upton’s Naturals’ vice president) Nicole Sopko were eating at a Nepalese restaurant. They ordered a delicious meal made from jackfruit and thought, “Wouldn’t it be nice if the process to cook this at home were easier?” 

Knowing that fresh, unripe jackfruit was hard to come by and that the closest thing to convenience in the category was unseasoned jackfruit in a can, the 20-year vegan power couple set on a mission to bring pre-seasoned, ready-to-eat jackfruit to the U.S.

The new kid on the vegan block, jackfruit is spiky on the outside, but mild-flavored and nutrient dense on the inside. When cooked up young (a.k.a. not ripe) and seasoned right, this tropical fruit is a real-food meat alternative that tastes like the sweet and savory, tender and juicy, perfect pulled pork of your dreams. 
Using only simple, recognizable ingredients, Upton’s Naturals’ jackfruit offers a good source of fiber, is completely free of cholesterol, gluten, soy, oil, GMO’s, and artificial flavors, and 100% vegan. Varieties include: Bar-B-Que and Chili Lime Carnitas.

Once picked, the fruit has a shelf life of only a day or two, so Upton's found a partner in Thailand to do all of its processing before shipping the finished product overseas. The company teams with a network of family farms that have been growing cultivated jackfruit for many years. Dan inspired the group to sell him unripe jackfruit in addition to the ripe fruit they were used to selling. This created extra demand for the farmers, who prior to the arrangement often had unused crops, and resulted in a mutually beneficial relationship for both.

“Doing what we believe in is the best part of this business, and to us, success is creating 100% vegan products that can inspire meat-free meals,” shared Staackmann. “Unripe jackfruit is the source of an incredibly versatile and healthful meat alternative that is relatively foreign to the American market. We set out to make jackfruit easier to enjoy and more accessible to the everyday consumer. The response from vegans and non-vegans alike has been amazing.”

Upton’s Naturals’ jackfruit can be found in the refrigerated section at natural and specialty stores nationwide for an SRP of $4.99 per 10.6oz box. Visit www.uptonsnaturals.com for more information.


 Also visit www.UptonsNaturals.com and find @UptonsNaturals on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram,and Pinterest.

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