When I first started working on this product review, I was pretty sure I was going to just be sharing my opinions on a unique quirky protein supplement, giving a bag away to you guys, and moving right along. Ripped Cream, a powder based coffee creamer containing as much protein as an egg, and featuring such delicious flavors as Lean Vanilla Bean and Chizzled Chocolate, is definitely an innovative and much needed creation for us fancy coffee lovers who put nutrition first. I know I’ve been a black coffee girl for well over a year now, so the fact that this sweet treat actually has a reasonable nutritional profile really piqued my interest.
I went straight for the Lean Vanilla Bean – and it is so so good. It mixes like a dream, and isn’t overpoweringly sweet. For anyone who’s ever tried to drink protein powder in a warm beverage just to be disappointed by ruining a perfectly good cup of coffee, with Ripped Cream, you don’t have to worry about that.
Ripped Cream is delicious delicious and helps us get more much needed protein in our diets, and that could be the end all be all. However, that’s not the case. There’s a whole lot more to the Ripped Cream story than just the finished product. As you all know, as an entrepreneur myself, it has become one of my mini life missions to encourage other females to do the same for themselves. Creator and CEO of Ripped Cream, Robin Dimiceli was kind enough to do an interview with me about her life as a business owner and mother and give me some behind the scenes information about Ripped Cream. I hope Robin’s story is as inspiring to you all as it is to me, because it is such a shining example as to how standing behind something you genuinely care about and feel passionately about can help turn your dreams into reality.
Robin and her family – the inspiration behind Ripped Cream.
What inspired you to start your own business?
Robin: My youngest son was diagnosed with a learning disability and his doctor recommended I give him a high protein breakfast every morning. I started mixing protein powder for him in a sippy cup, and adding it to hot cocoa to increase his protein intake. I started using his concoction in my coffee as well knowing I needed protein first thing in the morning. I didn’t like the taste and did a google search for protein coffee creamer. All I could find were blogs with people looking for it.
I was on my sofa on a Saturday watching the tv show “Shark Tank,” drinking my not so tasty protein coffee creamer. I never missed an episode and was always trying to think of my own invention. In my research I found that nearly 75% of Americans drink coffee, and with so many of us searching for ways to improve our eating habits, I was motivated! I knew nothing about the food industry, but I was excited to learn!
What are some things you struggled with during the start up of your business?
Robin: Ha ha. Besides money?
I think the biggest challenge was the flavor. Keeping it healthy as well as yummy was a juggling act! Also, it wasn’t easy finding a high quality protein that could withstand the heat and acidity of coffee. We tried to come up with an unsweetened version, but we learned after months of working with some of the best chemists that the little bit of organic cane sweetener in Ripped Cream is necessary for the dissolvability of the protein and vitamins.
Chizzled Chocolate was a challenge as well – the organic cocoa for it was only being harvested when we were ready for production. It would still be 5 months before it was ready, and it wasn’t an option for us to change the ingredients on the already printed packages. We searched and found the same chocolate in France. Chizzled Chocolate is my favorite… Maybe because it was so high maintenance.
I am so in love with your packaging/design, and clever names for the different flavors of Ripped Cream! Did you come up with all that yourself?
Robin: I love angels, so I knew the logo had to have angel wings and a coffee mug. My dear friend Joe Lacono is an artist who loves retro style hot rods (he developed a stroller called a “Roddler” so dads can feel manly pushing a stroller?). I told him what I envisioned, and in a day he emailed me our logo.
The names of the flavors were really fun – I’m not really in touch with the 20 something names in the fitness world, so I had my kids and their gym friends for words like “cut,” and “chizzled”. We have a savings bank of names now – hardbody hazelnut, smoking hot cinnamon, and yoked eggnog! (Note from Martha… Dear Santa (or Robin), I want Yoked Eggnog for Christmas next year!!)
Ripped Cream was tested and granted the seal of approval by Whole Foods!
What’s the best part of owning your own business.
Robin: I love that dialysis clinics are using Ripped Cream. We ship it to them. I had no idea how important it was for those patients to get protein! We have done some really fun things like an air drop to our troops in Afghanistan. Being able to say yes to decisions I want to make from my heart feels really good.
It’s very surreal still to see Ripped Cream in a store. Kind of crazy because I’m not known for my cooking skills, but people love Ripped Cream!
What advice do you have for aspiring entrepreneurs?
Robin: For sure I would say… Believe in your dreams and your abilities. Even if you have no experience. Doors will open, you will meet people… You can do amazing things! Oh, and you can pretty much Google anything for answers (lol.)
Anything else you want my readers to know about Ripped Cream?
Robin: I researched every ingredient before it went into Ripped Cream. Whole foods found us and put us through their 3rd party food safety audit and we scored 100%! I have to say as long as it took and as tedious of a process as it was, I gained huge respect for whole foods. They may charge more, but they themselves make sure what’s on the outside of the packaging is on the inside as well. Getting an A from them means a lot!!
Since my blog is so fitness-centric tell us what you do to keep in shape:
Robin: I am a Bikram yoga addict! I have to drive 45 minutes to the nearest studio, so I can only do it 2 times a week. It is amazing and it works every muscle as well as the inside of us.
As a single mom, I have learned to LOVE many DVD workouts. I rotate – no excuses – barefoot, hair in ponytail, still in PJs, no one can see you!! Exercise is the best way to deal with stress and always gives you a glow!
I want to thank Robin for taking the time to answer these questions, as well as for hooking me up with 2 big bags of Ripped Cream – one for me to try, and one to share with you guys!
All you have to do to enter my contest for a bag of Ripped Cream Chizzled Chocolate is –
Leave a comment below and tell me how you like your coffee!
For a bonus entry tweet about my giveaway! Make sure you tag me (@mychickenbutt) and @rippedcream – and let me know you did in the comments below so I can count that.
On Friday, I will pick a winner via random.org and contact you ASAP, so keep posted!
Update! Robin is throwing in a bag of Lean Vanilla Bean too – that means 2 winners! Get to tweeting and commenting, and best of luck to all of you!!!