Ranch dressing (left) and Strawberry Yogurt Dip from Granny’s Fresh Dressings. | Courtesy Granny’s Facebook
RIGBY — During a discussion in February, two local families came to the unanimous conclusion that eastern Idaho lacked fresh dressing options.
Three months later, Granny’s Fresh Dressings and Dips was born.
Granny’s, run by Mitch and Tara Chapple and Ryan and Autumn Kamachi, produces fresh, preservative-free ranch and blue cheese dressing out of its commercial kitchen in Rigby.
The company’s official launch came in May at the Rexburg Farmers Market. The line of people waiting for their dressings and dips that day was “stacked” for four hours straight, Mitch said. The owners looked at each other as they left, each in the same bewildered daze.
“What did we get ourselves into?” Mitch remembers asking.
Since then, the company has outgrown the farmer’s market scenes — unable to provide enough of its product to satisfy demand. Granny’s is now available in Albertsons and WinCo from Ashton to Pocatello, as well as many local shops and markets.
(From left) Autumn Kamachi, Mitch Chapple and Tara Chapple. | Kalama Hines, EastIdahoNews.com
According to Mitch, Granny’s makes and sells “a couple thousand” pints of fresh-made dressings per week.
Asked what separates their dressings from others, Autumn said that it comes down to the freshness that other options don’t offer.
“I think people are sold on the taste. Once you have it, you want it,” Tara added. “We’ve heard people say, ‘Ranch is now a food group, and I am trying to find something else to eat with it.’ It’s been kinda interesting to hear how (people) use it.”
Mitch and Autumn run the day-to-day operation. Ryan and Tara — and both couples’ teenage children — join the labor force as needed.
“We’re old-school, we’re labeling stuff by hand — we’re not real automated at this point,” Mitch said.
That old-fashioned business model is also part of the inspiration for the company name.
“We, kinda, wanted to go back to like a basic, old-school recipe, old-family recipe,” Tara said.
The name, she added, is a play on the idea of the fresh dressing that sits on the table during Sunday dinner at grandma’s house.
And dressing isn’t the only thing available from Granny’s — as the name would imply.
Perhaps just as popular as the ranch and blue cheese dressings is Granny’s Strawberry Yogurt Dip, an item that, like the dressings, has become its own food group.
The owners monitor social media for people using their products. And as they said, people have taken to some interesting vessels for consuming the fruit dip — even attempting to drink it with a straw.
“It’s cool to see that stuff in other people’s lives and how our product is right there in the middle of it,” Mitch said.
Because the dip is such a unique product — a light, fluffy whipped topping more than a thick, dense dip — the creators have explored different uses for it. Their recommendations include eating with apples or bananas, as a topping on pancakes or waffles, as a filling in crepes, or even as frosting on a cake.
“It’s a lot more versatile than people give it credit for,” Mitch said.
Because Granny’s has outgrown the local farmer’s market in a matter of months, it is easy to imagine the company going regional and distributing throughout the northwest and perhaps beyond. But, at least for now, the owners say that is not the plan.
Granny’s is homemade using no preservatives, meaning the shelf life is short — not nearly long enough to survive shipment even to Boise.
Instead, Granny’s is setting its sights on possibly expanding to the Teton Valley or Island Park.
“Right now, we’re looking at just staying in the east Idaho market,” Mitch said. “We think there’s a big enough market here to keep us busy. And we want to keep it small enough that we can manage and control it without having to hire a lot of staff and people to manage stuff for us.”
The business plan was always to be a small business operating out of a small town.
Granny’s is located at 153-1/2 East Main Street in Rigby. They are open for in-store purchases Monday through Thursday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Friday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. For a list of stores that carry Granny’s dressings, visit the company website — here.
For more information about the company, visit its Facebook page — here.
Small Town Spotlight wants to shine a light on all the good in small-town Idaho. If you know of someone or something in one of Idaho’s many small towns that deserve to be featured on Small Town Spotlight, email Kalama@EastIdahoNews.com and include “spotlight” in the subject line.
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