Wayne Luciano and Nathan Sheets are not your typical entrepreneurs. When they set out to go into the pasta sauce business, it wasn’t because they had developed a batch of recipes they were sure would sell. In fact, the sauces that would eventually wear their logo were nothing more than a vague idea at that point that stemmed largely from Luciano’s experience growing up in an Italian-American family in Boston. Guided by the conviction that their product needed to be authentic and homemade, the men embarked on a quest to give it tangible shape and form by conducting a nationwide recipe contest limited to home “chefs.” The result was Just Like Home Kitchen Recipes. The likeness, signature, and home state of each of the six winners is prominently displayed on the label of their creation.
Looking to the Future
Currently, the company’s product line features six flavors of sauce: Buttery Marinara, Zesty Tomato Basil & Cheese, N.Y. Lip-Smackin’ Garlic, Chicago-Style Bolognese, Mushroom Cabernet, and Sweet Potato Pomodoro. But the search for the next round of product is already underway. Just Like Home just concluded another nationwide search, this one targeted toward adding a creamy pasta sauce to its product line, as well as expanding into the areas of salsa, BBQ sauce, chili, salad dressing, and jams and jellies. Winning recipes will each receive $1,000.
Sadly, the contest for this year just ended on Dec. 1, though there’s always next year. In the meantime, make a note to check back here on Feb. 11 to see which recipes won.
Helping the Homeless
Just Like Home’s mission does not end with selling their sauces. Luciano and Sheets have also dedicated themselves to helping combat the homelessness problem. Twenty-five cents from every jar sold is donated to local homeless shelters throughout the U.S.