Have you ever found yourself …
Eating a microwave meal or another boring salad while your family enjoys “real food”
Spending tons of extra money at the grocery store buying things you don't need
Grabbing another frozen pizza for dinner because there just isn't time to figure out what's for dinner
Spending hours searching the internet for recipes that fit your diet and preferences
Starting to meal plan only giving up a few weeks later because it takes so much time and work
Feeling like dieting and weight loss is impossible
Getting bored eating the same food week after week
Spending hours every day calculating nutritional information and points
You're not alone. Experiencing of all this in our own lives, we knew there had to be a better, easier way. Using our own experiences and those of our members, we set out to create website, recipe hub, and meal planning tool to make meal time, healthy eating, and weight loss easier.
To lose weight and eat healthy long term, you need to have a plan. Benjamin Franklin got it right when he said, "By failing to plan, you are planning to fail”
Eating is one of the great joys of life and that shouldn't stop when you start a diet
Families should be able to eat together and eat the same thing – no more plate envy or cooking multiple meals
Mealtime shouldn't be stressful
Healthy food doesn't need to be boring or bland – it needs to taste delicious and be packed with flavor
People change diets often for lots of reasons – your plan should easily adjust with your changing needs
Everyone is busy and everyone could use a little extra help in the kitchen
Using those beliefs, we built Slender Kitchen. We hope that Slender Kitchen takes the guesswork and difficulty out of healthy living, meal planning, and weight loss.
How it All Got Started
Slender Kitchen was launched December of 2010 by co-founders Kristen McCaffrey and Joe Memun as an experiment in cooking and blogging. Noticing Kristen’s growing interest in cooking and healthy eating, Joe (in charge of all things tech) suggested that Kristen (in charge of all things kitchen) start a cooking blog. After a few weeks of percolation, Slender Kitchen was launched. In the first two years, Slender Kitchen was just that - a simple recipe blog that shared the recipes that Kristen was preparing at home.
However during those two years, Kristen had a sneaking suspicion that a lack of recipes wasn't really what was holding people back from losing weight – herself included. The real culprit was a lack of planning. So Kristen and Joe set out to change things.
They started by creating weekly .pdf meal plans that members could download weekly. And although these meal plans were successful and lots of members started losing weight and finally enjoying meal time again, Kristen and Joe always knew this solution didn’t work for everyone. What if someone had an allergy? What if someone didn’t like a certain ingredient? So they set out to create something new.
This pursuit was two years in the making and the result is what you find on Slender Kitchen today - a customizable meal plan focused on healthy eating with everything you need to make a healthy meal plan you’ll family will love without the stress or hours of time it takes to create one yourself.
Before the start of Slender Kitchen and diving into the world of cooking and blogging, this story really started with my own experience struggling to lose weight, eat well, and find a healthy and happy balance in my own life.
If I look back and rewind about ten years, here’s where I was in my own life. I was 25 pounds heavier and knew how to cook exactly one dish that didn’t come directly from my freezer. I was tired. I felt bad about my body. I was exhausted after years of trying diet after diet without any real long term success.
At that time, I was also moving to a new city, starting a new job, and beginning graduate school. Busy didn’t even begin to describe my life. Life was exciting and I was happy BUT…. I just couldn't take the idea of spending another year as the “chubby” friend, spending hours in front of the mirror trying to camouflage my body, and never feeling comfortable in my own skin. I needed to make a change.
So I starting talking to friends and family who had successfully lost weight and kept it off. I wasn’t interested in another short-term win. During these conversations, I discovered two things that would be critical to my long term weight loss and health – learning to cook and following a meal plan. In every story I heard, these two things surfaced as the key to long-term weight loss for almost everyone. And this resonated with me. I had lost weight with diets before but could never stick to them long term. I needed a solution that I could stick to.
I started to teach myself to cook. (Luckily it’s not that hard!) I devoured blogs, cookbooks, magazines, and videos and with each healthy recipe I followed, I grew more confident in the kitchen. I also started meal planning. Each week I spent hours and hours searching for recipes, adjusting serving sizes, building meal plans, and creating shopping lists. It took forever - but it worked. The problem? I rarely had the time necessary to find recipes that fit my diet and build a meal plan so I continued to gain weight. About 15 more pounds of weight to be exact.
Let’s fast forward a few years. Finally armed with the extra time I needed, I finally truly committed to making a change. I started meal planning and developing recipes, and that’s how Slender Kitchen was born. Knowing that most people didn’t have the time that I finally had, I wanted to help others on their healthy living and weight loss journeys by sharing healthy recipes and creating an easy way to meal plan that took minutes, not hours!
Curious about how my story ended? Today, I am happier and healthier than ever. I have lost over 30 pounds since the start of this process and feel like a rock star in the kitchen. I am absolutely sure that you can do the same by committing to cooking at home and creating healthy meal plans. Weight loss, healthy eating, and cooking really isn’t that hard and is something everyone can do.