Brothers Build High Protein Donut Brand | 2021-06-04
AUSTIN, TEXAS – Adopting a low-carb, high-protein diet helped twin brothers Amin and Amir Bahari lose significant weight in high school, but late-night donut cravings in college threatened to derail this hard-earned progress. The search for healthier options led the couple to launch Elite Sweets, now Amazon.com’s best-selling brand of donuts.
The startup’s flagship product is a grain-free, high-protein, low-sugar donut formulated with almond flour, eggs, whey protein and fiber, and sweetened with allulose and l erythritol. Reformulation is underway to reduce ingredient costs and extend shelf life.
Each individually wrapped donut has 12-13 grams of protein and 1 or 2 grams of sugar, with 190-240 calories. Flavors include birthday cake, cinnamon sugar, and chocolate.
“Our company, our mission, our goal is to bring innovation,” said Amir Bahari, chief operating officer of the company. “The protein muffins, bars and cookies are already ready. “
Elite Sweets was recently selected as one of nine startup brands to participate in CoLab, a 12-week program run by Mondelez International’s SnackFutures unit, offering workshops, one-on-one mentoring and $ 20,000 grants. Mondelez will provide tools, technologies, access to company leadership and industry expertise while gaining information, capabilities and potential investment opportunities. The program will end with a final showcase for brands to present to key stakeholders.
“This partnership helps continue our mission to create healthier products and create a better future for snacks,” said Amin Bahari, CEO of Elite Sweets. “With the help of Mondelez, we want to be the next Oreo and become a generational lifestyle brand.”
The brothers began developing the concept several years ago, as students at the University of Texas at Austin, with friends and former college footballers Caleb Bluiett and Timothy Cole Jr. In an apartment kitchen, Amir Bahari created the first recipes, which the team tested in the region. gyms, collecting feedback and iterating for months before hiring a seasoned food scientist to perfect a ready-to-market product.
“We don’t have any culinary training,” said Amin Bahari. “When Amir started doing it, it was to prove it. We certainly wouldn’t be here today if it was still our product.
Elite Sweets products are marketed as keto-friendly, with 1-6 grams of net carbs, depending on flavor. Products formulated for the popular ketogenic diet have been popping up in almost every grocery store aisle, from emerging and established brands. Interest in the high fat, low carbohydrate lifestyle has increased as consumers seek personalized solutions to manage their weight, improve physical and cognitive performance, and treat or prevent specific health issues. Several estimates put the size of the global market at $ 9.6 billion in 2019, and is expected to grow to around $ 14.8 billion by 2027. While diet-goers represent a small segment of consumers, a larger intention to reduce the consumption of sugar indicates the resistance of these products.
“At the end of the day, we believe we are setting the standard for what a healthier donut is, and we will continue to build the brand and set that standard,” said Amin Bahari.
Donuts are available online at the brand’s website, elitedonut.com and Amazon.com, as well as in dozens of supplement stores and fitness centers nationwide. The founders plan to expand the brand’s commercial footprint in the years to come. Future product development could focus on extensions like donut holes and herbal offerings, as well as additional flavors.
“As Elite Sweets, we want to be a better-for-you candy company, starting with the best-for-you donut,” said Amir Bahari. “Our plan for retail is to focus on sales, to get as much distribution as possible, then once we feel that we are at a good stage of distribution, we will start to launch more. products low in sugar and high in protein. “