For Kasey Potts, the kitchen is like an entire second home. It’s where she finds her creative center, nurtures her passion, and serves as a kind of mission control for her rapidly expanding business, Kasey’s Kitchen. What began in college as a way to cook and eat healthier with the limited real estate of dorm life, has grown for Kasey into a serious culinary career. Food, Kasey says, is a great connector and that’s part of what fuels her professionally: to reach more people plate by plate, to bring healthy, great tasting, affordable dishes to all kinds of home cooks and the culinary-curious, and to reintroduce the simple pleasures of sitting down together over a really great meal.
If you could describe yourself in one hashtag, what would it be?
#apinchofcuteadashofsassy Ok, that might be cheating because it's my tagline, but it's ME!
Tell us about a girl in your life who rocks.
So my best friend would never admit this herself, but she totally rocks. She busts her butt working two jobs in order to save up enough money to pursue her dreams. I totally admire her financial discipline and all but the real reason why she rocks? She's the most amazing friend anyone can have. Sounds corny, I know, but I only wish I could be as good of a friend as she is. She's the person Hallmark writes Friendship cards about. As I write this, she is flying from Boston to LA to spend the weekend with me. She is the one friend who is always willing to go the extra mile, or 3000.
She is selfless, thoughtful, hilarious, forgiving, and beautiful inside and out.
What are your dreams/goals/ambitions?
Ok, this will sound crazy but my goal is be a combination of Oprah, Rachael Ray, and Ellen. Hear me out... Oprah was/is successful because she is relatable. Women watched her talkshow and saw someone they could relate to. When Oprah struggled with her weight, so did her viewers. When Oprah got excited, so did her viewers! That is what lead to her popularity. Her viewers felt that they were spending time with a girlfriend every day at 4:00.
Now Rachael, she makes cooking easy and enjoyable! I have always admired her style for using everyday, budget friendly ingredients to make wonderful meals. She also has built an empire around having fun in the kitchen and I hope to one day do the same.
As for Ellen, she makes people laugh! Not only that, but she makes people want to do good things in the world and be kind. I love how she shares stories of people's random acts of kindness and it becomes contagious!
So I guess my dream is to be a relatable, funny, kind, talk show host who can cook!
What are you most proud of?
Honestly, I'm really proud of what I'm creating with Kasey's Kitchen. I started this idea as my senior project in college and in the past few years it has transformed into something that I can be proud of. I feel like it has challenged me to be more creative and innovative, which I thrive on. It has also opened up a number of opportunities! Because of Kasey's Kitchen I've been able to meet some of my culinary idols like Wolfgang Puck and Giada. I've also been able to cook on national television, hang out at the Oscars, and meet some amazing other bloggers who have turned into life long friends!
What piece of advice changed your life?
“Smile and nod knowingly.” Learned this when I was a kid working for Disney and it has gotten me into and out of many situations!
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Ideally, I would be hosting one of the many cooking shows I've been dreaming up!
What is the number one item on your bucket list?
To host my own show. I know it might sound lame but when you've been dreaming about it since you were 3 years old, it's hard to shake!
Who has been the biggest female influence in your life and why?
Yikes, there are so many women who have made a huge impact on my life. I'm going to have to say my mom has been the biggest though. She has shown me how to pursue dreams and be a strong, independent woman. She has instilled in me a knack for business and creativity. But most importantly, she taught me to always wait until it goes on sale.
What is the biggest risk you’ve ever taken and what did you learn from it?
I think the biggest risk I've taken was packing up my life into a Mitzubishi Galant and moving from Boston to Los Angeles with just my husband (fiance at the time), a few suitcases full of clothes, 2 cats, and my Kitchenaid Mixer.
I learned that it's hard to say goodbye to the things that you are used to and what's comfortable but it is important to spread your wings in order to fly. Had we not moved out here, I know I would never have pursued Kaseys Kitchen this way.
Why are you THAT GIRL?
Hmm... this seems like the most important question, so clearly it's the hardest for me to answer.
I AM THAT GIRL who is wildly ambitious and driven but still doubts herself. I am that girl who can make a full thanksgiving feast and still burn the rolls. I am that girl who has a crazy dream and will bust her butt to make it a reality.
*Interview conducted and compiled by Sheila Moeschen, IATG Senior Editor