I have to give credit where credit is due, and start with a little family history… My great-grandfather, Michael, immigrated to New York City from Italy and wisely married my incredible great-grandmother, Rose. Standing at 5’2” and 5’1” respectively, these two tiny powerhouses created the foundation for my future career path.
Rose loved to cook and she was phenomenal at it and Michael was an avid self-educator - a man who read Prevention Magazine in the early 1900s and knew that health should be a priority. They both greatly influenced my mom who spent her life teaching me. The passion for health and food has grown like wild fire with each passing generation.
The Kristin O'Connor brand is a true embodiment of balance. As basic as it sounds, achieving true health can be nothing short of creating a health environment, eating whole foods and making sure that cycle can be repeated by giving back to the very place your food came from.
Let’s be honest – if you don’t like the way your food tastes, you’re never going to eat it. Plus, we want to LIVE and enjoy what we eat so the idea of deprivation, cutting out certain food altogether, well it just doesn’t appeal to me. Instead I work exclusively with food I know will provide nutrients to the body, giving your body something it needs to sustain an active, happy, healthy life. I challenge myself to stay within those parameters with each ingredient in each recipe…everything should be doing some good, right?
My food is gluten-free, zero refined sugar, it’s pretty low on dairy and soy and I keep total calories down overall. But, never deprive me of a good fluffy stack of pancakes, or a homemade bar of my dark salted chocolate or the occasional hearty banana bread. I love comfort food just as much as the next person; I just make it lighter, healthier and maintain fantastic taste. If you ever have questions about my food, or requests, please write, we welcome feedback and comments.
We either think of eco-friendly cooking as consuming food that makes little impact on the planet, or we think of it as food prepared in a non-toxic environment. I believe the two cannot be separate. In my kitchen, (and I will encourage you to do the same in yours) I use only non-toxic cleaning supplies. These can be made from simple grocery ingredients, or bought from eco-minded companies like The Honest Company. I also store all my food in glass storage containers to avoid chemicals from plastics leaching into the food. I cook with cast iron or stainless steal pots, free of aluminum or Teflon, and whenever possible, I buy organic food. These are important choices that will all make a positive impact on the environment in the long run. We have to recycle, up-cycle, reuse and reduce waste in our homes. No effort is too small.
At 22 years old, when I should have been partying the days away, I was instead going to innumerable doctors visits, suffering from every endocrine problem you can possibly imagine. Ultimately, the solution created for me was not an appealing one, and could have caused very serious long-term side effects. I sought out alternative treatments, and within one year my health had changed for the better. Nutrition was a big part of that change. I became incredibly impassioned by my experience and the power that something seemingly so simple - the food choices I made - could have such an impact on my body. Since then, I have cooked only wholesome and nutritious foods. I experiment almost daily with new techniques, combinations and flavors. It’s what inspires me, and (thankfully) it’s what people also hire me to do! I’m a private chef, author of several cookbooks and a blog contributor for The Honest Company, and every day I thank my lucky stars.
A client once turned to me and said – you would be doing this every day even if it wasn’t your job, wouldn’t you? No doubt in my mind. There is nothing more satisfying to me than giving over food I have prepared to someone whose health will be positively impactedThat positive change, however small,is what motivates me.
My mantra is simple:
Give Where You Take.
We love our ingredients and want to protect their sustainability. The challenges facing our world are becoming more and more extreme, complicated by the intersection of increasing climate related crisis and an ever growing global population. This can be overwhelming but we believe we all can play our part to help. Many of our signature ingredients are sourced from regions right at that intersection and we believe in giving back to the regions that make our products possible.
Kristin has her Bachelors degree in Art Education and Psychology and Masters degree in Art Therapy from NYU. After graduation, she concentrated on work with women with eating disorders, leading groups at The Renfrew Center in New York City. Her educational background and work experience greatly influences her approach with clients, using a partially psychological approach to encourage a healthy relationship with food and diet. Kristin began her culinary career working as an Associate Producer for a production company creating shows for the Food Network and Cooking Channel. After meeting Dr. Peter D'Adamo, who wrote Eat Right for Your Blood Type, she collaborated with him to write four cookbooks for the Blood Type Diet. After publication, Kristin became a private chef, known for cooking food for her clients designed to help them achieve optimal health and wellness. Through her private chef work, she has traveled around the globe, maintaining the integrity of her purpose to make the tastiest and healthiest food possible! In 2014, Kristin also began contributing as a blogger to The Honest Company. Each career decision Kristin has made has been an authentic expression of her interests and passions, which is why after years each twist and turn has amalgamated into her current approach to food, cooking and life.
Logos and graphics by: Richard Browd
web design for kristinoconnor.com by: Maggie Slavonic