Nourish you from the inside out – that's what Rita Childers and Candi Tenney, the two women behind the new plant-based company CORE + RIND, hope to do with each one of their customers.

A black-and-white sign stretches across CORE + RIND's new stand at the Tower Grove Farmers' Market. As the two smile from ear to ear with a positive glow you can't help but think, "I'll have what they're having." And that would be plant-based, dairy-free and gluten-free staples.

"We're not selling vegan food; we're selling nourishing food," explains Childers. Their menu features fresh juices, drinks, bites, dressing and a "cheese" sauce you'll find pairs perfectly with your market vegetables.

"You're going to the farmers' market and you get your beautiful greens and sprouts," explains Tenney. "Now get some of our Caesar dressing to throw with it. And you're done."

Childers and Tenney wanted to sell what people use in their own homes. "We went with the staples," Childers says, offering replacements for foods that are unhealthy. "You don't have to worry about there being 40 ingredients where you don't know what they are. It's all real."

This duo's story began back in college at Southeast Missouri State University, where they were friends and, like many, survived off the not-so-healthy college fare. It was not until after college that both went on their own food journeys separately. When Childers and Tenney reconnected in St. Louis, living in the same neighborhood near Tower Grove Park, they realized they shared similar healthy eating goals.

Childers grew up in a vegetarian family and became vegan five years ago. She began looking at the health benefits of ingredients in her cooking. Tenney, who primarily eats plant-based, changed her diet when she began cooking as a newlywed. Eating plant-based left her skin clearer, her weight lighter and her mood happier.

Having both completed The Academy of Culinary Nutrition, they knew they wanted to sell something. This turned into selling what they make in their free time. "We wanted to sell the food we eat," says Tenney. The two produce plant-based items the public may not have access or time to make themselves.

And there was no better place to start than Tower Grove Farmers' Market, which holds a special place in their hearts. Both Childers and Tenney have lived near the park for several years and have been regulars at the Saturday morning yoga class and farmers' market.

As CORE + RIND is in its beginning stages, for Childers and Tenney, "the sky is the limit." The two hope to expand CORE + RIND, making its website a resource for readers. Their plan is to eventually be in grocery stores and offer online ordering. They are also currently testing a one-day juice cleanse.

Planning aside, you can currently find them at the Tower Grove market every first and third Saturday of the month through October. Once summer is underway, CORE + RIND will partner with other local vendors for produce such as the carrots and beets used in their juices.

Childers and Tenney are doing what they absolutely love and have been overwhelmed by the positive feedback from the community. "We've put our hearts and souls in this," Tenney says. "We are on this super positive ride and are not getting off."

CORE + RIND, St. Louis, Missouri, 314.608.5034,

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Anna Beck is a lawyer, food blogger and a St. Louis contributing writer for Feast Magazine.

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