Pure Cocoa

Sedona Trip – Part 2 of 3

Doing bridge pose on Bell Rock with Courthouse Rock in view.

While on my trip to Sedona this past week, I was fortunate to hike on some gorgeous trails.  During the visit a few us hit Bell Rock, a great trail with beautiful outlooks of Sedona and the adjacent rock called Courthouse.  At the top of the rock we practiced a few yoga poses on Bell Rock.  Post hiking and yoga, we were hungry, and went to grab snacks and ingredients for dinner from New Frontiers Natural Marketplace in Sedona—a smaller version of Whole Foods.  As luck would have it, we walked right into their Festival of Chocolate.

The Chocolate Festival at New Frontiers Natural Grocer in Sedona

From chocolate fondue, gelato, raw chocolate, chocolate covered kale, I honed in on my new love <3.  I discovered Crio Brü, a company producing organic, pure ground 100% cocoa beans (also known as cacao), one of nature’s superfoods.  I sampled the Cocoa River flavor and ended up sampling and purchasing one bag.  You can brew Crio Brü just like coffee.  Note I tried brewing in a traditional coffee maker a few times with a regular paper filter in two different coffee makers (no need to attempt yourself), but it only works with coffee makers that use a gold filter.  I was so determined to drink when I returned to Los Angeles I purchased my first French Press.

Making Crio Cocoa

Crio Brü is healthy, tasty, dark chocolaty flavor without the sweetness. I was thrilled to find something similar to having a cup of coffee without the caffeine (or miniscule traces dependent on origin of bean), with only 1.5 grams of carbs, loaded with antioxidants.  Crio Brü claims 150% more than pomegranate juice, with a natural stimulant called theobromine for an energy boost, minus the jitters and less acidity than regular coffee, and many other health benefits.  I prefer tasting the pure cocoa  flavor, but if you are into sweetness, add your regular creamer will bring out the subtle hints of flavor of cocoa.

A hot cup of cocoa made of 100% ground cocoa beans

Crio is named after fine cocoa beans, called Criollo beans.  Not only does Crio Brü create a healthy product to ingest, their business concept supports sustainable energy, fair trade policies, and produces a reusable product.  They utilize sustainable wind energy to make their products.  With my educational background and passion for the environment, I truly appreciate their eco-friendly practices.


Used grounds are an exfoliant

How to repurpose used grounds: 

  • Can add used cocoa grounds smoothies, brownies, and other baked goods
  • Reuse after one use (like tea)
  • Can be used as compost in plants as long as they aren’t pet accessible
  • Exfoliate your hands.  I tried it and noticed my hands soften after one use! There is a recipe on their website to make a scrub.

It’s approximately $11 per bag (with 40 servings), and you can order it online or find at a natural grocer like Whole Foods or Mothers Market.  For more information on Crio Brü, other flavors, and recipes, log on to www.criobru.com.

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