NEW YORK (FOX 5 NY) - A Long Island City, Queens-based company is serving up healthier alternatives to comfort food that you can make at home in just a few minutes. So, I invited them to the Fox 5 Studios to tell us their story and whip up some dishes.
Co-founders Franklin Becker and Ben McKean joke that Hungryroot was born in a bar. All kidding aside, the two loved food, were both in the restaurant industry, and wanted to create a company based on the concept that food is an emotional consumer experience.
Becker says it's simple: they make food taste delicious. McKean says Hungryroot recreates typically unhealthy foods with a vegetable base. So there are things like sweet potato mac n' cheese and carrot noodle pad Thai.
Their most popular product is cookie dough made out of chickpeas, sweet potatoes, and almonds. McKean says it's as indulgent as any cookie dough, but is extremely healthy.
Each item is about $6. You can buy a bundle of 10 products for around $60. McKean says they're trying to make it as reasonable and easy as possible to both buy and consume their products. Hungryroot is now selling over a million units a year.
Their message? You don't have to sacrifice the enjoyment of your meals to eat healthy. Chef Becker says just look at America right now. Young children are being diagnosed with adult-onset diabetes. Different diseases are running rampant. Everybody has an allergy. He believes it's time to get focused and make a difference in people's lives, serving them something that makes them feel good.
He joined me in the Fox 5 kitchen to show us what Hungryroot is serving up. He made carrot pad Thai with a tangy sriracha peanut sauce. Chef Becker says with that dish, they've taken simple carbs and replaced them with complex carbs that break down better in your body, and are healthier and more flavorful.
In just 5 minutes with a little oil and water, the carrot noodles were ready to go and were packed with flavor. I loved their crunch. The texture was very satisfying.
Their brownies were also delicious and the batter was fantastic. Plus it's safe to eat raw because it's vegan. Chef Becker says the brownies are his favorite because they're so rich. The brownie batter incorporates black beans for protein, sweet potatoes, and almonds to provide healthy fats.
Plus, it has two-thirds less sugar than traditional brownie mix.
You can buy Hungryroot direct from www.hungryroot.com or find the products at Whole Foods.