In the world of healthy, there's paleo food, but then, when it is time for those fall sports and social gatherings that come with, there's paleo SNACK food. Honestly, I cannot think of a better representation of the perfect real-food munchie than pork rinds, especially when they come with the spice of Texas BBQ, from those Texas Epic folks. Each savory piece is the perfect marriage of crispy and melt-in-your-mouth, with enough spices to touch down on your tongue like a delicious delivery.
I'll say it right now, here in 2016: bacon, you're over. We've come to this state of affairs because EPIC has taken the most revered of animals—naturally raised, antibiotic-free pigs—and transformed them from head to tail into the most delicious and paleoish of snacks: pork rinds.
EPIC Pork Rinds are better than pretty much any other pork rind or chicharron out there, period. They're nearly addictive munchables that will not last long whether you are enjoying with friends or all by your happy self. Epic Pork Rinds are rich in protein, low in sugar, gluten free, grain free, and absent of both soy and dairy. The Texas BBQ flavor is really out of this world. Ok, maybe just out of the state. But you get the point. Epic is from Austin, so of course they know their BBQ flavors.
EPIC writes about their newfound recipe, "EPIC Pork Skins are a wholesome and clean version of an iconic American snack food and created using traditional methods inspired by our grandparents' generation. High quality pork and simple seasonings are the foundation for this tasty and nourishing approach to creating enchanting food that is both time tested and trusted by consumers. A premium pork skin compared to your gas station variety, EPIC sources a combination of organic, pastured, non-gmo, and antibiotic free skins. With high levels of protein and collagen, this low carb snack is paleo friendly, preservative free, and low carb!"
Start with a snout to tail commitment made by Epic: "in efforts to honor the brilliant animals that Epic sources, our pork skins allow us to use more of the whole animal. The "snout to tail" commitment creates more nourishing food, and allows us to incentivize ranchers to raising their animals in better environments."
When choosing your meat, pork is one animal that we can all make a difference by choosing natural, organic, and sustainably-raised. The animal has a better life and the nutrition after processing is better for humans. It's just better all around. Per Epic, "Our pigs are certified by the Humane Farm Animal Care Program standards. This ensures they are raised with shelter, resting areas, and sufficient space to engage in natural behaviors!"
This is a deliciousness, through and through. Tear open the package and add it to anything that strikes your fancy, including your mouth. That's it.
Oddly enough, the roots of EPIC were planted shortly after Katie and I became vegetarians. We wrongly believed that a “clean diet” was plant based and in order to replenish our bodies after hard workouts, we consumed large amounts of soy and other highly processed proteins. To compound the stress we were putting on our systems, we followed the advice of sports nutrition “experts” and prescribed to a diet that was high in carbohydrates and low in fat. As a result, we were making ourselves unintentionally sick with gastrointestinal distress and a myriad of inflammatory ailments. Not knowing what to do, we decided to go vegan and when things got worse, we decided to follow a raw food diet.
Unable to maximize our own vigor and wellness, we looked for answers in the whole foods consumed by our human ancestors. Within a week of adopting, what is now called, the "paleo diet" which emphasizes healthy animal fats, grass fed protein, and leafy vegetables, our bodies and minds radiated with exuberance. Through modifying the foods we ate, we reached exciting new levels of performance during competition as well as daily life. Within a few months Katie and I were stronger, faster, and leaner than we had ever been.
Preparing healthy meals at home was a breeze, however we quickly realized there was a lack of conveniently packaged nutrient dense animal protein when we traveled, exercised, and worked. So, we set out to create the world’s first 100% grass fed meat, fruit, and nut bar. We call our product EPIC because it improves the lives of animals, regenerates our bodies, and helps heal the land. Due to an ingredient label unlike anything else, EPIC epitomizes real foods and will always be humane, pasture centered, and most importantly, delicious. May you fill your life with epic adventure and epic health!
"Feed others as you wish to be fed"
EPIC products are inspired by the simple yet powerful diets of our ancestors and consistent with our unique evolutionary biology. Throughout the majority of history, our species has evolved living active lifestyles and consuming a Hunter and Gatherer diet rich in high quality meat, wholesome vegetables, fruit, nuts and seeds. On the contrary, modern day diets of processed foods and excessive sugar, combined with sedentary lifestyles have pushed our physiologies dangerously far from their adapted environments. By looking to the diets and lifestyles of our ancestors, we believe that evolution has much to teach us about human optimization and healthful living. EPIC products are an expression of our evolutionary biology, and allow modern day omnivores to thrive consuming a wide array of nature's bounties; just as mother nature intended.
EPIC foods begin with a living animal. We believe that all ruminants should consume diets they were biologically intended to eat and roam freely outdoors. As a result our beef, venison, wild boar, lamb, and bison are raised on open pasture just how nature intended. We continuously strive to convert ranchers to this pasture based livestock model, and through our products, create financial incentives to help change American agriculture. Through our sourcing, we support organizations devoted to improving animal welfare standards. Our key allies are The Savory Institute, The Global Animal Partnership, The Certified Humane Project, and The Marine Stewardship Council.
Through our partnership with The Savory Institute, EPIC is committed to global large-scale grassland restoration efforts. We believe that ranchers who operate within a holistic context are positioned to create incredibly positive impacts on their local ecosystems as well as the world at large. When managed appropriately, animals can enrich the earth by aerating the ground, fertilizing the soil, and positively shaping landscapes. Through these biodynamic ranching practices, we are learning that healthy lands create wonderful habitats for native and migratory animals, effectively hold ground water, build topsoil, and sequester carbon from the atmosphere!
A rind is a fried pork skin taken from either the belly or back of a hog. This skin is softer in texture and has more subcutaneous fat when compared to the shoulder. As a result, when cooked, these parts of the hog have a fluffy texture and are often considered “porkier” than pork “cracklings”. Additionally, pork rinds have very little meat cooked into the product. The end result is the perfect lightweight snack that melts in your mouth.
Yes! As a matter of fact, EPIC produces the most Paleo-friendly meat stuffs available on the market, period. And pork rinds might just be the most paleo-ish of them all.