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Kelly and the Chocolate Factory - June 2018 by Sedona Monthly

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Some of us profess our undying love of chocolate because we crave the taste, but for people like Kelly Johnson, chocolate is a life force. Fourteen years ago, the Texas native was dealing with health issues that almost ended his life. He discovered the Tree of Life Foundation and the idea of healing the body through rough foods. While volunteering at the foundations lab – Kelly has a background in engineering as well as cooking – he learned the many modern illnesses stem from blood sugar issues. 

As it turns out, whole-seed, wild-grown cacaso has the ability to stabilize a reduce blood sugar levels as long as the cacao is treated properly (low exposure to light, air and heat) Kelly began making chocolate from cacao and low-glycemic sweetener in a commercial kitchen in West Sedona. Kelly and his wife Radhica Jen Marie, would go on to open ChocolaTree Organic Oasis restaurant and market in the same building in 2008. Today Kelly makes 55 to 60 different flavors of chocolate each day, but his repertoire includes more than 1200 recipes all flavored with botanical extract. 
The chocolate is nutty and earthy - most of Kellie‘s cacao comes from Ecuador, Mexico, Belize and Peru. 
Kelly says that the average price of the bean he buys is 10 times the price of mass-produce beans that are often used to create chocolate filled with sugar and design to have a long shelf life. 
Kelly’s chocolate is made by hand, and primarily available at the eatery or on its website. 
Kelly is he certified master Chocolatier, (he also has a background in Ayurvedic food preparation and yoga instruction) but his mission is larger than just producing healthy tasty chocolate for his legions of followers.  "There are a few plants on the planet that are reforestation species, but cacao is one," he says. "I want people to taste the chocolate and remember who they are.  We are all indigenous souls and the earth we walk upon producers all that we have - everything comes from a seed. Without reference for that, we are nothing."
For more information on Kellie‘s chocolate call 928-282-2997


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