When Beth Porter’s seven-year-old decided to become a vegetarian, she had Mom’s full support. But, at the time, Beth couldn’t find snacks that were naturally delicious and convenient. Needing ready-to-eat nutrition with ingredients that her daughter could pronounce, she took matters into her own blender.
With help from her team — and her trusted taste tester — Beth launched her line of ready-to-eat spoonable smoothies. Made from only fruits, nuts, and seeds, they’re the perfect pick-me-up for any time of day. From Coffee to Peanut Butter, Sweet Nothings are a real treat — no sugar, straws, or clean-up required.
Recently, we caught up with Beth to learn more about the Sweet Nothings journey and hear her advice for fellow entrepreneurs.
01 Why did you start Sweet Nothings?
I grew up in an under-resourced food desert and I saw the full picture as a parent. Our food system was broken. When my daughter became a vegetarian at a young age, I was inspired to learn more about nutrition and find ways to serve my family plant-based foods that tasted good.
02 What obstacles did you face along the way?
I had never worked in the food industry before! To learn how to scale production, I sought the advice of experienced food scientists and co-packers. Time and time again, we were told that our formulation would never work in conventional equipment. Food scientists told us we’d have to add gums, sugars, and stabilizers.
Eventually, we figured out they were all wrong. Defying conventional wisdom, we were able to use ingredients like chia and flax in place of chemical stabilizers.
03 What lessons do you have for other entrepreneurs?
I started my first company 16 years ago, so I knew how hard it would be to start a new one. Especially in a field that I knew very little about. What I didn’t appreciate the first time, however, was how important it is to pick the right partners who share your long-term mindset.
This is one of my favorite quotes, because it really sums it all up. “The team you build is the company you build.” It’s all about the people. I couldn’t have found a better partner than my co-founder Jake Kneller. His hustle, intellect, and drive are all unmatched, yet he’s still the most incredible team player.
04 What’s on the horizon for Sweet Nothings?
So many sweet things are on the horizon for Sweet Nothings! Just recently, we launched a co-brand with RISE Coffee. Plus, we have even more fun, delicious flavors in the works, inspired by the feedback of our customers.
05 How do you keep work/life balance? What drives/inspires you?
During this uncertain time, work/life balance has become trickier. In addition to being a mom, I’m also a teacher, cook, therapist, and startup co-founder. I have my entire family with me at home, which makes carving out time for exercise and mental health even more important. A good workout allows me to tackle the day with a positive attitude, more energy and less stress. It also helps me to sleep better at night, so that I can get up and do it all again tomorrow.
I’ll always find inspiration in connecting people with nourishing and accessible foods. Together, with my team, we’re showing that healthy can be — and should be — delicious.