Milford Moms launch ‘Strong Sauce’ and enter the pasta sauce market

Dinner should be a breeze, but any parent will tell you that it’s not always with kids.

“The challenge I had was that I wanted to make this amazing meal for myself, but my daughter just wanted buttery pasta,” Elissa Brown, from Milford.

Brown texted her friend Callie Bundy, who has a background in fitness, sports and nutrition.

“And I said, ‘Hey, maybe add some protein powder to it?’ I was obviously being funny, right? So the next day we woke up and were like, ‘That’s actually a great idea. Let’s make a high-protein pasta sauce,” Bundy said.

It was three years ago. But both mums got busy, so the idea sat on the back burner until about a year ago.

“Elissa is actually a good cook, so she started making recipes of what we thought we wanted to do and how we would do it. And then we didn’t know how to cook beyond a casserole for someone, is not it ?” Bundy explained.

“That’s when we brought in our chef, Stephen Roth. He perfected the recipe for us, and three weeks ago we launched sauce-forte.comand here we are,” Brown told News 12.

Roth is a classically trained French chef, while Brown has worked in advertising and marketing for 15 years, and Bundy is an influencer with her own website and brand.

“Each of us has a very particular set of skills,” Brown said. “So it was kind of the perfect trifecta of all the things we needed to launch a brand that we hope will be very successful and in everyone’s homes.”

The hot sauce is high in protein and plant-based. The protein comes from quinoa, red lentils and chickpeas.

“For regular pasta sauce, you only get about a gram of protein per half cup. For ours, you get 7 grams of protein per half cup,” Bundy said. “It’s easy. It’s delicious. It’s healthy and it’s a complete protein.”

“It’s a very versatile sauce,” Brown added. “It’s not just like that Sunday sauce on pasta like grandma used to make. You can make pizza, you can braise beef in it.”

And perhaps most importantly, Strong Sauce got Brown’s daughter’s approval. “I made it into lasagna one night, and I didn’t tell her, and she ate it all up,” Brown said.

Her daughter’s softball teammates were also fans at a team dinner.

Production has since moved from Brown’s kitchen to Onofrio’s in New Haven. You can buy it on the hot sauce websitebut the hope is to see it in stores soon.

“Our goal is really to keep the momentum going, to educate people on why we’re different, right? Why we’re a solution in a jar. It empowers moms, parents, athletes, people to save time in the kitchen,” Brown said.

“To make a jar of hot sauce, it would take you about three hours. All you have to do is come home, open it, and then do whatever you want to pour into it,” Bundy told News 12.