ROCKWOOD (WATE) - A local woman has made a business out of doing almost all the work for you creating sweet muffins, zesty dips, cheese balls and even some select sweets.
Sophie's Choice owner Tracie Graham talked to Made in Tennessee about watching her parents prep for parties.
"My parents entertained all the time. I saw them work really hard, and I wanted to be part of the party and not be in the kitchen all the time," she said.
So after her daughter, Sophie, was born, Tracie got her domestic kitchen license and began brainstorming about what she could create to sell to others.
She says she and her sister had a tasting party right at her kitchen counter. The result was five dip flavors she still sells today.
Each mix requires you to add one or two simple ingredients like cream cheese or sour cream. "I wanted it to be simple so anyone can do it," Tracie explained.
At first she only sold the mixes at a small shop in Kingston, but things have changed a lot in four years. Now she's selling to stores in 25 states.
Since the business is named after her daughter, it only makes sense that Tracie added a kids line as she expanded.
A few of the dips are aimed at the younger crowd. "One of our best sellers is our Apple of my Eye Dip. Sophie is the apple of my eye," she said with a smile.
All of Sophie's Choice items are made and packaged by hand. Tracie gives each one a personal touch with cuts of ribbon and custom labels that often include tips on using her products.
Although Tracie doesn't have a store front, she's expanding her business in other ways. She recently partnered with Stony Clay Station in Lenoir City, selling its original pottery with an accompanying Sophie's Choice mix.
"It was very important to me. I was using dip chillers from China. I think our company is special and I wanted to partner with someone special," Tracie said.