DIFG Meet Lexi’s: Ooey, Gooey, Crispy Treats
Founded in 2020 by Alexei (‘Lexi’) Khatiwada, Lexi’s are on a mission to make much more satisfying and inclusive healthier treats!
Spotting a Gap in the Market: Alexei Khatiwada, Founder of Lexi’s
In 2019, Alexei was working in an office and like so many people, as he began watching his weight as he grew older. As he looked at his snacking habits, he wondered why there was such an absence of snacks which bridged the gap between ‘indulgent’ and ‘healthy’.
He noticed that his colleagues would try and snack healthily in the morning and by the afternoon, most of them would resort to scoffing chocolate and sweets. There were very few snacks that could offer both ‘healthier’ and ‘satisfaction’ at the same time.
Alexei also discovered that lots of people found that ‘healthy snacks’ didn’t hit the spot and surprisingly, healthy snacks could often be particularly high in fat, calories and sugar. Those with particular dietary requirements (e.g. vegan/vegetarian lifestyle, intolerances, allergies, coeliac disease, etc) had even more limited choices
Alexei wanted to see if he could make the ideal healthier treats himself – lower calorie, lower fat, lower sugar treats which offered all the satisfaction of ‘real’ treats, whilst being as allergy-friendly and inclusive as possible! He started cooking up various recipes in his home kitchen, focusing on his signature ‘ooey gooey Crispy Treats’, which were a delicious healthier reinvention of the classic crispy rice and melted marshmallow squares!
Reinventing a Childhood Favourite for the Better! Alexei Khatiwada, Founder of Lexi’s
Alexei chose to make Crispy Treats because he wanted to offer consumers a lighter treat, which could offer a hint of comforting nostalgia and offered more textural satisfaction than typical ‘health foods’ (which were often dry/crumbly/mushy textures). The result? A truly ooey, gooey, crispy delicious treat perfect with a cuppa!
Alexei soon quit his banking career and devoted himself to testing over 25+ recipes, baking his treats at night and delivering them across London offices and selling at food markets in the day. Consumers LOVED the handmade treats, so Alexei decided to launch a range nationwide… unfortunately, just as we headed into a national lockdown!
Taking the Risk to Launch during Covid: Alexei Khatiwada, Founder of Lexi’s
Launching a ‘grab and go’ product in the middle of lockdown was a huge risk, but Alexei has been documenting the Lexi’s journey on Instagram from Day 1and realised that he’d built a huge loyal following of consumers across the UK, all of whom who were excited to try his new 99 calorie treats!
With a range of treats that were only 99 calories, delicious and gluten-dairy-nut free, Alexei knew he’d created something unique. Despite the Covid restrictions, Alexei decided to launch Lexi’s in August 2020–selling primarily online and in the food-service locations which were still open. Launching two classic flavours – Marshmallow Bliss (vanilla) and Triple Choc Delight– he sold out his entire first batch of 35,000 bars in 6 days & quickly expanded with more flavours (Choccy Orange and Strawberry White Chocolate)
In 2021, Lexi spotted another gap in the market – a lack of high protein snack bars, which didn’t taste like cardboard – for the big, growing population of people following a plant-based / flexitarian lifestyle.
His newly launched Vegan Crispy Protein Bars offer all the ooey gooeyness of the original treats with EXTRA health benefits – high protein (10g), high fibre (9g), low sugar, vegan and still gluten-dairy-egg-nut-peanut free. Truly satisfying and only 150 calories, they offer much more satisfaction than typical protein products. Available in two flavours – Blueberry & Vanilla and Double Chocolate Chip.
Making ‘Free From’ Taste Delicious… and Winning Awards for it! Alexei Khatiwada, Founder of Lexi’s
Alexei makes his treats as allergy-friendly as possible so that EVERYONE can enjoy them! The population of consumers with allergies growing – especially those with gluten, dairy, nuts & peanuts allergies – and mainstream brands often ignore these consumers.
He realised that existing allergy-friendly snacks could be unappealing for stockists, because they’re often not as satisfying as the ‘real’ thing and allergy-focused brands can be off-putting to mainstream consumers without allergies.
He decided that Lexi’s would be different to help bridge the gap. Fun and colourful – an inclusive brand appealing to a wide audience and with delicious treats that anyone can enjoy – making it easy for food service stockists to stock his popular treats!
After selling over 1 million Crispy Treats in his first 18 months, getting stocked in over 20+ major offices, schools & vending machine and major retailers like Ocado, Asda, SPAR and Amazon, the icing on the cake was winning THREE esteemed Free From Awards in 2022
Lexi’s Crispy Treats recently won awards for ‘Best Sweet Snack’, ‘Best Child and Teen-Friendly Food’ and ‘Nut and Peanut Free Product of the year!’
What’s next for Lexi’s: Alexei Khatiwada, Founder of Lexi’s
More stockists are recognising that Lexi’s unique and fast-selling healthier, allergy-friendly range are a great fit for hotels, schools, café’s, co-working spaces, vending machines and shops, particularly as Lexi’s are the ONLY brand in the UK making these unique, tasty treats!
Alexei has a real passion for working on lots of exciting new flavours and new healthier reinventions of classic treats, so watch this space!
Alexei left his banking career to start his small self-funded business and began with no experience of the food industry, so he has been passionate about sharing his journey from Day 1 and hopes it will help inspire others – follow Alexei’s ooey gooey Crispy adventure on LinkedIn and Instagram!
How To Stock up on Lexi’s today
Delicious Ideas Food Group supply snacks, confectionery and beverages including Lexi’s to thousands of sites around the UK. If you are a hotel, pub, café, co-working space, deli, farm shop or more, set up an account here and get wholesale deliciousness delivered to your site today! If you have any questions or just want to find out a bit more about our service, get in touch with a member of our sales team today on 01733 239003.