You know Stacy’s Pita Chips?
Have you ever been to a grocery store?
Well, this is Stacy.
Stacy Madison got her start giving away pita chips made from the stale bread leftover from her Boston-based food cart. Before she built an empire, she was scrounging around couch cushions to get quarters for the laundromat, and was drowning in student debt.
SAME GIRL! (the couch cushion/crushing student loans part, empire still very much TBD.)
But after plenty of blood, sweat, and maxed out credit cards, she built an iconic brand that she sold for a (reported) cool quarter billion dollars. WHILE RAISING TWINS.
If your like to nerd out on How I Built This as much as I do, you can listen to her episode HERE.
But that’s really just the Foreword. These days she’s running Stacy’s Juice Bar and launching her new brand BeBold, in the midst of a pandemic. But as Stacy says, she is, “no stranger to managing through a crisis.”
I wanted to know how she’s managing the juggle these days, and, of course, what’s in her pantry?
CS: I drove by your spot the other day and said out loud to my husband, “Huh, I wonder why Stacy Madison has a little juice bar in Needham, MA?”
SM: What makes me happy is working everyday, and providing an atmosphere where people can make healthy choices; creating jobs, and giving people an opportunity to pay off their car loan.
CS: It’s a cute little shop, with healthy lunches, and smoothies, it’s got a very local feel and seems like a real departure from running a national brand that gets acquired by PepsiCo.
SM: It doesn’t make any money. I know how to make it more profitable, but it doesn’t need to be. I could choose to not pay for 100% of health insurance for my employees, or pay for childcare, or help with affordable housing – but how else does someone who is making $15 an hour ever get ahead?
CS: You don’t talk about that publicly very often.
SM: I get a lot out of it too. I get to create recipes, run a business, and stay connected to the food industry.
CS: And that’s where your new venture, BeBold Bars was born, right? You jumped back into the pool launching a new brand of refrigerated energy bars.
SM: Initially, we were making them out of the Juice Bar. Even though I was ready to slap a label on and get it to the store, it doesn’t work like that. We commercialized the bar in 8 months, and then Covid hit, but we’re not strangers to managing through a crisis.
CS: Despite all this stress you seem very centered and like a very healthy person, how do you manage that?
SM: Before the pandemic I spent a lot of time in the gym. Now I get in 12,000 steps a day for my sanity.
CS: How do you and your teenage twin daughters eat at home?
SM: In the beginning of the pandemic I was thinking I get to cook with my kids, try new recipes, got my garden going…but just like everyone else, I got so sick of cooking.
CS: Do you follow a special diet?
SM: I try to eat real food, lots of protein, smoothies, I eat yogurt everyday, and try to drink lots of water. I also love buffalo meat, I buy it from a little farm in New Hampshire.
CS: That seems like a very reasonable approach!
SM: Getting older, I try to think about what I’m putting in my body… But last night I had a huge piece of birthday cake for lunch, and a glass of red wine for dinner with some scrambled eggs. Which is fine, you just get up the next morning a do a little better.
Stacy's Kitchen Essentials
“If you go down to my kitchen right now you’d find Brazil nuts, Macademia nuts, Cashews, Almonds, and Peanuts. We’re developing new recipes for BeBold Bars.”
“It’s my go-to carb. My kids stopped at Five Guys and I broke out a rice cake and got a burger with everything on it and ate it on a rice cake.”
Stacy putting an airport patty on a ricecake, much to the mortification of her girls.
Acai and Yogurt Bowls
“I top with our maple pecan granola, mini dark chocolate chips, flaxseeds and chia. Something a little sweet and some crunch.”