Mom Made Foods is celebrating ten years of providing local families with meals and snacks that are convenient and chock full of essential nutrients for healthy eating. To celebrate their anniversary, we sat down with MMF’s CEO and founder, Heather Stouffer, to talk about her passion for delicious, convenient food and making high-quality ingredients her top priority. This Alexandria, Virginia, mom has a lot to say about providing kids with wholesome, yummy food without the added junk and without sacrificing quality or nutrition.
POSH: Back when you started your company in 2006, there was a huge need for quick, healthy food for kids. How have those needs changed?
HS: The need for quick, healthy food for kids hasn’t changed. However, as families become more educated about the foods they’re feeding themselves, they’re becoming more discerning about the products they buy.
Nearly half of consumers look for snacks that go beyond basic nutrition, and one in five buy snacks for an energy boost or to improve their mood. Additionally, more than 23 million children and teenagers in the United States ages 2 to 19 are obese or overweight, a statistic that health and medical experts consider an epidemic. This epidemic puts nearly one third of America’s children at early risk for type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, and even stroke—conditions usually associated with adulthood.
Paired with America’s growing demand for snacks rather than the once formal sit-down meals, this need for health has put added pressure on quick, on-the-go foods. Mom Made Foods was built on the idea that parents are often the most important role models for their children, and this belief continues to hold true today.
How did you come up with your recipes? Which are the most popular and why?
HS: Mom Made Foods’ products are inspired by kid-favorite meals and snacks. We take a close look at foods that don’t have healthier counterparts currently on the market and re-imagine them to reflect Mom Made Foods’ values. It’s important to us to make food that kids crave and that parents feel good about making for them.
Our Cheesy Mac is a great option for parents looking for an alternative to the traditional macaroni and cheese. It’s packed with organic butternut squash, organic sweet potato, fresh organic green peas, plus the taste kids love and expect. We add our own creative, healthy twist to the all of the products we develop. At 230 calories, a fraction of the sodium of competing macaroni and cheese products, and 9 grams of protein per serving, our Cheesy Mac delivers on all levels for America’s busy families.
Another one of our best-selling products is our Turkey Meatball Bites, which are made with antibiotic-free turkey, are low sodium, and a great source of protein. Made from simple ingredients and prepared to taste like homemade, they reflect our ability to bring families the foods they crave and the nutrition they need.
What’s your criteria for selecting your produce and why?
HS: When Mom Made Foods is procuring produce, we look for certified organic ingredients that are as close to our manufacturing facility as possible. This ensures quality and freshness. We spend a lot of time sourcing the absolute best ingredients we can find, right down to the last ingredient on each label. We’re passionate about flavor but never at the expense of doing the right thing.
Where are your products produced?
HS: Mom Made Foods is based in Alexandria, Virginia. Beginning the company’s journey at the local Del Ray Farmers’ Market, Mom Made Foods continues to operate out of Alexandria today and works with like-minded distributors and retailers who are just as committed as we are to delivering quality foods.
Where can we find your products? In local stores?
HS: Shoppers can find Mom Made Foods in the frozen aisle of respected retailers such as Wegmans, Whole Foods, and Safeway.
HS: Parents should know that Mom Made Foods cares deeply about the products it puts on shelves. As a mother myself, I understand the challenges many parents face. Mom Made is dedicated to helping parents find simple ways to feed their kids nutritious food and to do so with their pocketbooks in mind. One thing we know for sure is that no matter how good the ingredients are, if the food doesn’t taste great, kids aren’t going to eat it. The taste and experience are in the details for us at Mom Made.
Helping feed America’s families is a responsibility I’m honored to have. The Mom Made Foods team and myself never take that trust for granted and do what we can to continue to grow our relationship with today’s families.
This commitment to excellence is proven in the fact that Mom Made Foods insists on organic ingredients when commercially available, added fruits and vegetables for extra nutrition, only natural sweeteners, the avoidance of allergens when possible, and the use of non-GMO vegetables and dairy. At the end of the day, quality is of utmost importance.
What’s the next step for Mom Made Foods?
Ultimately, Mom Made Foods’ goal is to take the company from a leading food brand to a household name. We’re reaching the shelves of more retailers every day and working on new products that we’re excited to introduce to consumers this year.