Vancouver, especially Kitsilano, is all about innovative healthy lifestyles. Our neighbourhood is home to many young entrepreneurs who practice exactly what they preach when it comes to sustainable and health-conscious choices. Joni Lind and Amy Kizaki, founders of KitsKitchen, a small batch soup company, are two perfect examples. Forward-thinking, environmentally-aware, fitness-obsessed and innovative, their start up is all about making delicious and detoxifying food readily available for all of us.
How they met
After meeting through their boyfriends just two years ago, the girls became friends overnight and almost instantly embarked on their business venture together. In fact, I met them at 49th Parallel the other day to take a seat at the table where they first shook hands on the deal. A shared love of tasty food and feeling good was a solid foundation for a friendship that is also proving to work perfectly professionally.
The vision was a soup company that would source only local and organic ingredients, offering a variety of mouth-watering flavours. The girls, self-confessed typical Vancouverites, found that soups were naturally best suited to their active lifestyles. When Joni noticed that she was feeling her healthiest when her diet incorporated a range of homemade soups, she conceptualized a company that would specialize in soups, and once Amy was on board, they never looked back.
They both left their jobs in November 2014 to focus on soup full time. Constantly working on product-development, meeting with local farmers, marketing themselves, and, of course, cooking (both self-taught chefs, they still do all the cooking themselves, with just a couple extra hands for help, at their kitchen on Terminal and Main), Joni and Amy are the epitome of the ambitious young Vancouverite, who decided to produce exactly what they wanted but couldn’t find.
The soup is, first of all, is completely delicious. In large part, they tell me, because of the commitment to local and organic ingredients, which simply taste better. Packed full of flavour and nutrition, the soups are gluten-free and dairy-free, and about half are vegan. The local ingredients also force Joni and Amy to constantly redevelop ideas, inventing new soups with whatever ingredients are currently available.
Joni and Amy work entirely collaboratively on KitsKitchen, both embracing every part of the soup creation/marketing business. Two nutritionists fine tune the reset and approve all the soups, ensuring that calorie intake and all the rest is up to par so your body can fully benefit from the experience.
Their trial and error method reaches a delicious end through messy means, as the girls – lucky them – are continuously in the midst of tasting new flavours. Joni’s favourite, after some deliberation, is a tie between the Chicken Pepperoni and Spicy Tomato + Chicken, and Amy doesn’t hesitate to proclaim the Chicken-Veggie as her go-to pick.
Unique to KitsKitchen is their 48-hour Reset, an offering of eight soups and four bone broths (an original for the company that is packed full of health benefits) to be consumed over the course of two days, healing the stomach and getting the body back on track (something we all need at the start of the year).
Where to buy
The soups are available online and at a variety of spots around the city (all listed on the website). Body Energy Club is now serving the bone broths hot, too, so you can grab a nutritious, mineral-rich cup to go.
I have to say that I am definitely a soup convert – my favourite is Curry Chicken and Mint. Yum!
Last modified: January 22, 2015