Founder and CEO
I’m a Midwest, DIY, millennial with a passion for all things pasta, fermenting hot sauce and philanthropy gardening. I always have the good snacks.
Out on the bike path, down at the farmers market or curled up by the fire table with a glass of red. I take my dog Tia with me almost everywhere, she’s the best.
Our company started when I discovered I have food sensitivities to 30 different foods and spices. It changed my entire life.
I couldn’t eat many pre-made sauces anymore, I had to make my own. I was raised around women who loved to cook and my first job was at a greenhouse. Eating and growing food has always called to me! My grandmothers from Krakow and Sicily valued writing down their recipes and teaching their daughters to love food through cooking. Those traditions and recipes came with them to the US and are alive in me.
My passion for providing financial assistance for food gardens stems from my personal experiences living in a food desert on food stamps. Ugly Noodle’s mission is to serve you tasty A.F. sensitivity friendly foods that to give back to community gardens and end food deserts.
A food desert is an area where people have limited physical access to affordable and nutritious foods. In 2010, the USDA reported that 23.5 million Americans lived in food deserts. They lived more than one mile from a supermarket in urban areas and more than ten miles in rural/suburban areas.
Food deserts cause populations to have health issues that stem from malnutrition and studies show that can equate to a near 16-year life expectancy gap for those who grow up with low food security in the United States. Ugly Noodle believes a system full of food deserts is ugly, and we want to change that. We’re not trying to sell you a lifestyle diet or tell you how to eat, but you deserve to make decisions based on the truth about food and it’s impact on the United States.
The USDA’s Economic Research Service studies have found that areas with higher poverty rates and higher concentrations of minority populations are both more likely to be food deserts.
Food deserts lack suppliers of whole foods, like fruits and vegetables. Instead, the available foods in these neighborhoods are highly processed and low in nutritional value. This is why food deserts contribute to a proliferation of health issues in these areas and a lower life expectancy for their populations. In addition to living in food deserts, many people in these areas are likely food insecure. This means they lack enough financial resources to obtain food. In 2019, food insecurity affected 13.6% of households with children in the United States. Before the pandemic in 2020, 35.2 million people in the United States lived in food-insecure households.
My 30 reaction foods included eggs, chicken, ginger, garlic, gluten and cashews. I had to completely change my relationship with food and pre-made products.
I had to give away my beloved hot sauce collection and toss all my salad dressings and sauces. I had to figure out new things to eat for breakfast and new ways to spice my food. I started making all my own sauces: 100% free from the top 8 common allergens.
Where food comes from and how to cook whole foods was a strong part of my childhood in suburban Chicago. I always knew providing that same educational opportunity to others would be part of my entrepreneurship journey.
Estimates by Northwestern University, say food insecurity doubled as a result of the pandemic.
Households with children were nearly 1.5 times more likely to experience food insecurity than households without.
We are a small women owned business that believes in buying from other small businesses. We buy and print our packaging locally. We get our gluten free desserts from Baby Doll Bakery.
Whenever possible, we get our produce from Local Foods. They work with small and local farmers that grow within 350 miles of Chicago, Illinois. This means our produce can be trucked to the city in a single day, it’s super fresh and has a smaller carbon footprint.
Our meat is super local (2 blocks!) and supplied by Wheaton Meat Company. We believe that ethical omnivorism is the best way forward for a healthy American food system. We do not support the idea that it is obligatory for people to eat animals however, which is why we support compassionate carnivorism and create lots of vegan content and products.