Appetizers

Two different – and delicious – approaches to granola

Take your pick: sophisticated Purely Elizabeth or bold Engine 2
Take your pick: sophisticated Purely Elizabeth or bold Engine 2 apierleoni@sacbee.com

If you believe there can’t be too much granola, try this disparate pair. One is far more refined than the other, but both make tasty-crunchy additions to yogurt, ice cream, salads and smoothies, and add a lot to baked goods. Or snack on ’em right out of the bags.

Purely Elizabeth cranberry-pecan granola could walk into a party and wow the guests with sophistication and savvy. It’s refined, svelte and wealthy with sweet-salty ingredients including oats, pecans, cranberries, amaranth, quinoa, millet, sunflower and chia seeds, coconut, cinnamon and sea salt. The “Elizabeth” in the name refers to “certified holistic nutrition counselor” Elizabeth Stein, who is credited on the packaging with creating the granola in 2009 ($7 for 12 ounces).

On the other hand, Engine 2 blueberry-vanilla granola would be more likely to crash that same party, with its clunky, oats-centric texture, muscular packaging and bold proclamation: “The way granola used to to be.” It contains steel-cut and rolled oats, applesauce, maple syrup, vanilla extract and freeze-dried blueberries ($5 for 12 ounces). A photo of “health activist and food writer” –and former firefighter – Rip Esselstyn is part of the labeling.

Find them at Whole Foods markets.

Allen Pierleoni: 916-321-1128, @apierleonisacbe

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