Couples in Business: Nutcase Vegan Meats

(Pictured above: Dr. Monica Randles and Dr. Andrew Maternowski) 

by Sarah Anderson | photography by Two Eagles Marcus

After meeting in med school at Michigan State University 28 years ago, this dynamic duo has been completely in-sync. What began as a passion for health developed into a company that specializes in vegan “meat”, or meat that is gluten-free, soy-free and corn-free. After years of witnessing diet-related illness in patients and having personal experience with the effects of a plant-based diet, Dr. Monica Randles and Dr. Andrew Maternowski launched their company, Nutcase Vegan Meats.

The couple’s business journey began when Monica herniated two disks; as a result, she suffered from back pain. She went on a clean-eating diet, free of meat, dairy, sugar and caffeine, which completely alleviated her pain. When their daughter decided to go vegetarian, the family fully transitioned into a plant-based diet. After a year of being vegetarian and dairy-free and not finding any satisfying meat substitutes, Monica wished for just one meatball on her birthday. Andrew took to the kitchen to create a nut-based vegan meatball. The couple continued experimenting with nut-based “meat” recipes and would often share their products with their friends. With the urging of their friends and some know-how from a family member in the food industry, Monica and Andrew launched Nutcase Vegan meats.

Looking back at this decision makes the couple laugh. They were both working full-time, she as a pediatrician and he as a hospitalist, and had two teenagers in the house. Adding a business to the mix certainly didn’t simplify their lives, but the timing was right, and they were passionate about bringing a quality meat substitute to the market. After tacking on a business partnership to their 25-year marriage, they appreciate that they know exactly what to expect from one another as business partners because of how well they already know each other as life partners.

Sarah shuffles between editorial support, content production and advertising at WLM. She loves her job so much, and isn’t just saying that to impress her boss.



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