Spoon It!

Funilla yogurt with coconut, strawberry, cherry, kiwi, M&Ms, Nerds and strawberr
There are more than 30 different yogurt toppings to choose from at Spoon It incl

Shamsha Ali was in second grade when her family immigrated to the United States from Pakistan. With business owners for parents Ali, a 1999 graduate of East Chambers High School, decided she wanted to follow in their footsteps.

“Basically I told my husband, I wanted to start something on my own — something small,” Ali said. 

In 2011, Ali started researching different concepts and discovered the self-serve frozen yogurt business plan.

“It wasn’t really that popular back then, and I thought this is really unique,” she said.

Ali began searching for places to start a business in the Houston area because that’s where she lived at the time, but everything was out of her budget or the location didn’t fit what she was looking for. That’s when she decided to return home to Southeast Texas.

In 2012, Ali realized her entrepreneurial dreams and opened her first business — Spoon It! Yogurt Factory at 1495 US-69 in The Plaza Shopping Center behind The Schooner Restaurant in Nederland.

The business, which recently underwent a renovation, celebrates its 5-year anniversary this month, Ali said.

 “I was kind of hesitant to open in a small town,” she said. “If you think about a city, that’s a never-ending population, but here I didn’t know if it would work out.”

Ali’s sister reassured her that large city or small town, everybody loves to eat.

“When I started, I got a good response on my first day,” she said about the business’s opening. “Since then, we’ve been steady.”

Customer favorites of Spoon It yogurt include Yellow Cake Batter and New York Cheesecake flavors. Most flavors are low calorie, non-fat and the shop always keeps a no sugar added flavor for diabetics and a dairy-free flavor for lactose intolerant customers.

There are more than 30 different toppings to choose from including marshmallows, coconut, strawberry, cherry, kiwi, M&Ms, Nerds, chocolate candies, and many more.

Like most self-serve yogurt places, Spoon It charges by weight.

“If they get a good size cup with toppings, it would probably cost around $5,” Ali said.

Spoon It also sells snow cones, shaved ice, and smoothies. Although the Tiger Blood snow cone is a hot item among customers, there are many flavors available including Wedding Cake, Blue Raspberry, and Piña Colada to name a few.

As far as the smoothies go, there are several flavors made with non-fat vanilla yogurt and fresh fruit including Black Very Berry; Red, White & Blue; and Triple Berry. The Banana Pudding and Mango Mania smoothies are customer favorites, Ali said.

There’s more about Spoon It than the yogurt alone, however.

“This is a family place and kids just enjoy coming here,” she said. “It’s a really popular place for them.”

Karaoke night for kids is a popular attraction at the shop.

“We have it every Friday night from 6-8 p.m.,” said Rocio Gonzalez, who has worked at Spoon It for more than two years.

There is also an Internet station for customers as well as free Wi-Fi.

Purchase a Spoon It T-shirt for $12 and wear it when you go to the shop and receive 15 percent off your order.

You can even pick up a treat for your furry friend, as Spoon It sells Yöghund yogurt for dogs for $1.99 a cup.  

“The yogurt is actually made especially for dogs. It has probiotics in it,” Ali said. 

According to the yogurt manufacturer’s website, vets recommend serving a cup of Yöghund a day, to keep probiotic counts high in your dog’s system. A daily regimen offers the best scenario for building immunity and assisting with digestion and nutrient absorption. 

“It’s a small portion and it’s a perfect idea for them,” Ali said. “It’s a common thing, especially in California where they have a lot of yogurt shops.”

Don’t forget to try the non-fat Taro yogurt! Taro is a root vegetable that resembles a potato and originated in Asia, but it doesn’t really taste like a vegetable at all. It is most often compared to a sweet potato.

“It’s not a strong taste,” Ali said. “A lot of people love it.”

Business hours are Monday – Thursday and Sunday from 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. – 11 p.m. For more information call (409) 724-1023 or like Spoon It!  Frozen Yogurt Factory on Facebook.