Salt That Doesn’t Need the Pepper


O.k. so we fibbed a bit, technically this salt does have “pepper” in it, but it’s not your traditional salt n’ pepper combo.   The Tagline on Mrs. Dog’s Chipotle Salt is “unleash the flavor” and it couldn’t be more accurate if it was in a science book.  This salt does wonders for, well, anything!  We suggest putting yours on popcorn when you open January’s Mitten Crate.  But the possibilities are endless (we’ve even sprinkled it on top vanilla bean ice cream with caramel to create a smoky salted caramel topping for our frozen treat)

Enter Julie, the creator behind the Mrs. Dog’s brand and this epicurean seasoning sensation.

Tell us a little about yourself and the company you own/run: 

My name is Julie Curtis Applegate and I run Mrs. Dog’s out of Grand Rapids, MI.  I grew up in South Florida and made sauces to go with the abundance of seafood we caught in local waters and on fishing trips to the Keys and Bahama Islands. I created a mustard sauce to accompany stone crab claws ~ my most favorite seasonal food!

What’s the Mrs. Dog’s ‘story’?
After two years of living in the southwestern U.S. I married a wonderful Michigander and moved to his home town of Grand Rapids.
Each time I made a batch of mustard sauce I kept a jar for myself and gave the rest away so that I could share a bit of my Florida past with new friends.
In 1988 friends encouraged me to market my mustard. But what to name my business? I realized that I didn’t want a name that reflected a particular region, as I was equally fond of Southwest and Caribbean flavors. Grand Rapids was teeming with dogs ~ mostly retrievers. My Golden, Nutmeg, loved her silly nickname “Mrs. Dog” so I named my new company after her.
With a $1000 gift from an old friend, guidance from Mike Lally of the Michigan Department of Agriculture, and (unsolicited) ingredient sourcing support from Fred Meijer, I found myself at the beginning of an incredible journey ~ full of riotous adventures, silly friends and, of course, the occasional calamity.
A year later Nutmeg (wearing her signature 3 strands of pearls) and I headed off to the very first Fiery Foods Show in Albuquerque where Nutmeg was proclaimed “The First Lady of Jerk.” At subsequent Fiery Foods Shows we won many Scovie Awards and appeared in a hilarious segment with Bill Geist on CBS Sunday Morning.

What else can we get from Mrs. Dog’s for our foodie fix?
Mrs. Dogs product line includes:
• Mrs. Dog’s Disappearing Mustard
• Mrs. Dog’s Jamaican Jerk Marinade
• Mrs. Dog’s Dang. Hot pepper Sauce
• Mrs. Dog’s Green Chile Pistachio Nuts  (shelled!)
• Mrs. Dog’s Mrs. Dog’s Chipotle Seasoning Salt
A Caribbean influenced grilling/basting sauce will be introduced this spring.

What makes your products special/unique?
After several years of judging and competing on the competition barbecue circuit I created Mrs. Dog’s Chipotle Seasoning Salt. The smokiness of the chipotle peppers (which are smoked red jalapeños) makes it a perfect base for the rubs I use on various cuts and types of meat.

What’s the best way to enjoy/eat/prepare/utilize your product?
I use it straight from the jar to season beef and chicken before cooking/grilling, in soups, on my eggs, grits and veggies, and always on popcorn!

Where can we buy more of your products?
Mrs. Dog’s sauces can be found  at specialty shops throughout Michigan. Mrs. Dog’s Chipotle Seasoning Salt is only available via Mitten Crate or online at We delight in providing some laughs, some whimsy, deliciousness, and exceptional customer service for our loyal customers.
Bone appétit!
Julie Curtis Applegate