Food | Celebrity

8 Celebrities Who Have A Sweet (And Salty) Side Project You Didn't Know About

In addition to the fame they receive for their day jobs, many celebrities are known for their keen business sense.

You may not have guessed it, but these 8 celebrities are also savvy investors! Whether they're making a splash on the big screen or scoring points on the field for a living, they know that they've got a food-related cushion to fall back on.

Check out these 8 food-based franchises owned by clever professional athletes and entertainers:

1. Shaquille O'Neil

"The Big Aristotle" joined the Krispy Kreme franchise family in October 2016. Before that, he owned over 150 Five Guys Burger locations and invested heavily in Auntie Anne's Pretzels.

2. Robert DeNiro

It might not be a fast food spot, but Nobu has a legendary backer that helped turn it into a worldwide empire! Robert DeNiro worked with Chef Nobu Matsuhisa to oversee over 30 different Nobu restaurants around the world.  

Together with Chef Matsuhisa, DeNiro oversaw the 20-year development of the high-end Peruvian-Japanese fusion restaurant. Today, the empire spans across five continents with the plans to open in Dubai, Cape Town, Manila, Budapest, Moscow and beyond.

3. Venus Williams

Venus bought her fourth Jamba Juice location in 2014. According to The Washington Post, the franchise is perfect for athletes because the stores are more of a stop and go environment, which provides for an easier operation.

When she's not being interviewed for being one of the all-time greats of women's tennis, Williams is happy to talk about her favorite smoothie recipes.

"I made a drink called a Ginger Snap once, and it has mangoes, strawberry, ginger, spinach, kale "” I don't remember all the ingredients "” I think a little bit of orange juice. And it tastes just like a ginger snap cookie!" She told Fox News.

4. Drew Brees

As of 2014, the New Orleans Saints quarterback owned five different Jimmy John's locations across the state and had plans to open at least 15 more.

In May, 2015 Brees signed on to become co-owner of Walk-On's Enterprises, a company that owns and operates Walk-On's sports bar as well as Happy's Irish Pub and Walk-On's Catering.

5. Chris Brown

It's no secret that the R&B singer owns more than 14 different Burger King locations across the country. No stranger to controversy though, Brown claims that he does not eat pork or beef, in spite of his active role in the company.

According to Burger King's website, a franchisee must have a net worth of at least $1.5 million and  $500,000 in liquid assets to qualify.

6. Rick Ross

William Leonard Roberts II (a.k.a Rick Ross) is the owner of at least 25 different WingStop locations in the southern United States. He's also owner of some Rally's/Checkers Hamburgers restaurants.

7. Mark Wahlberg

Is there nothing this guy can do?! From his start with Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch to becoming a bonafide movie star, Mark Wahlberg has no shortage of accomplishments under his belt.

In 2012, Wahlberg opened the first Wahlburgers in Massachusetts. He partnered with his brothers, Donnie and Paul, along with former COO of Panera Bread, Rick Vanzura to get the franchise going. Now there are 6 locations in the states and one in Canada.

8. Kanye West

When he's not interrupting other celebrities or making a name for himself as the biggest ego in the industry, he's also dabbling in the food industry. In 2007 KW Foods LLC formed a partnership with Fatburger that would see 10 locations opening in Chicago.

Unfortunately, the few that did open experienced difficulties in keeping their doors open.

At least West has the millions he's making from his Adidas Yeezy line to fall back on.

[h/t Insider/ Forbes/ Inc.]