If you know me, you also know that I love a good snack. No matter the time of day, I am always down for a nosh.
In terms of my own personal snacking preferences, I have a few requirements for items that become part of my daily repertoire (as opposed to “treat” or “cheat” meals). That is, they need to be nutritious, and they need to taste great – pretty simple. These items also need to be reasonable, from a caloric standpoint (usually under 200 cals), filling, and provide plenty of protein, per serving. As you can imagine, there aren’t tons of items that fit the bill. Things that I try, and really enjoy, become daily staples. Protes protein snack products is one one such staple.
The first thing I tried from Protes were the Nacho Cheese Protein Chips – and from there, I was hooked. Offering up both nacho chips (in a bunch of flavors from sweet to savory) and now new protein popcorn (in a sweet and a savory variation), Protes is a homegrown brand that was easy for me to get behind. Here, I interviewed the founders of the brand, to get you all the inside scoop! Krik and Ryan, take it away!
1. Where did the idea and name come from?
Krik: We were in college and I had just come back from the gym. I was laying on my couch, eating probably my 1000th protein bar when I thought there has to be more than this. That’s when I first thought a “protein chip” would be a good idea. Fast forward several years…Ryan and I were both working in Finance in NYC. We had both become disenchanted with that lifestyle so we decided to turn that idea in college into a reality. We started making the chips in our apartment…and they were awful. After several different recipes, we finally found one we were happy with. We came up with the name “ProTings” for our chips, and started hitting gyms and stores in NYC door to door asking people to give our chips a shot. After a good bit of grinding, we secured a distribution deal. We also secured an IP lawsuit over our name. Still being in the infant stage of our business, we decided litigation was not the move, so we decided to re-brand as “Protes” – a name we decided on after some very scientific spitballing and super medium level focus group sessions.
2. Tell us a bit about your product, and what makes you different?
Our protein chips were among the first protein chips on the market, and they are baked, vegan, gluten-free and Kosher – which sets us apart from our competitors. We were the first to use pea protein in chips, and provide a vegan option in a whey protein dominated space. We just recently came out with our Protein Popcorn which has been a big hit so far. While not being vegan, our popcorn is also gluten-free, low fat and like our chips, provides a “better for you” snack option that allows people with active lifestyles to snack guilt-free.
3. How long did it take to create the perfect protein chip? Did you have any missteps in the process?
It took the better part of a year to come up with a chip that we liked and thought other people would like. We didn’t stop there, and constantly worked to improve the chips in every way. The current generation of Protes is light years ahead of the first batch we made in our Manhattan apt several years ago.
4. Who is Protes for?
Protes are for anyone who wants to easily add protein to their daily snacking. Our snacks are for people lead actives lifestyle and want convenient, delicious snacks that aren’t filled with empty calories and artificial ingredients. They are also for people who just want a healthier alternative to the other snacks on the market without sacrificing taste.
5. What are some of your go-to foods, besides Protes, of course?
Ryan: We both try to eat healthy for the most part, but also like to enjoy life. We’re all about high protein, low carb meals filled with chicken breasts, sweet potatoes and steamed vegetables, but also enjoy a perfectly cooked steak and a whiskey.
6. What’s your favorite type of workout?
Krik: Hitting the gym, Lifting weights
Ryan: Hitting the Gym, Lifting weights, hockey
7. And finally, what’s next for Protes?
We are always thinking of the next Protes Protein Snack. Stay tuned.
Protes products are Krasey tested-and-approved. To get in on the action, visit the Protes website, here: Eat Protes!