ANGELA SHELF MEDEARIS
After having a successful career as a children’s book author, my mother and sisters urged me to write a cookbook containing our family recipes. Once published, The African American Kitchen cookbook was a major hit. I've written 6 other cookbooks including The Ethnic Vegetarian, The Kitchen Diva Cooks! and my newest cookbook, The Kitchen Diva's Diabetic Cookbook.
Like my children’s books, there were very few cookbooks in existence that showed the contributions of African American culture and cuisine. Now seven cookbooks later, and many guest appearances as THE KITCHEN DIVA!, I am educating people on the importance of healthy cooking to nourish the body and soul and steer away diet-related illnesses.
In 1988, I founded Book Boosters, Inc., a 501(c)(3) with my family. It started as a reading tutorial program for elementary age students, and has evolved into The Kitchen Diva Health Outreach, a program whereby we partner with community organizations to present nutrition information and speeches, workshops, cooking demos, healthy samples and nutritious lunches in an engaging way.
I am passionate about impacting the health of my community, and over the years my husband, Michael, and I have worked to improve the outcomes for underserved children and families in Texas and beyond.
I credit my relationship with the Lord and my family for making me the DIVA, or Divinely Inspired Victorious and Accomplished through Christ, I am today. After many bad cooking attempts I finally accepted the help of my mother, Angeline Shelf, and several elderly women at my church and learned to cook. Of course, cultivating my skill took years of practice, and learning to work through mistakes took humility.
The Lord has blessed me with many wonderful opportunities. I love creating recipes, and doing cooking demonstrations. I also love having my own cooking show, THE KITCHEN DIVA! LIVE, which is set to debut in 2018 on PBS/CREATE. To view and purchase my children's books, click here.
Angela Shelf Medearis is a well-known speaker, recipe creator, and culinary historian and author. To contact her about speaking at an event, television apearances, workshops or cooking
demos, please email .
I am honored to work with the American Diabetes Association, the American Heart Association and numerous non-profit community health organizations and churches to provide educational materials and deliver speeches, workshops and to do cooking demos at conferences. If you or someone you know is working on keeping their salt and sugar intake down, try THE KITCHEN DIVA! Herb and Spice Mix, a diabetes friendly, low-sodium mix that perks up the flavor of any meats, soups, and vegetables. It’s time to get some Diva-tude, honey and get cooking!
See episodes of The Kitchen Diva! on Youtube, kitchendivapro.com
"Having a passion for transforming traditional meals into healthy dishes has allowed Mrs. Medearis to openly engage many families and individuals in life changing and essentially, lifesaving dialogue that may otherwise be denied to them by some health professionals. She uses humor that reflects her own culture and ethnicity to broach health issues deeply embedded in complex cultural and ethnic norms."
Mona Allen, City of Austin Neighborhood Services Unit
On February 22, 2014, The Kitchen Diva and her team served up a healthy meal of chicken creole stew, black-eyed pea salad and sweet potato cornbread at the St. John's Community Center Black History Month Health Fair and Luncheon. Audience members got to hear about the menu's ingredients and how they can easily incorporate them into their own cooking.
By teaming up with city, state, and community organizations in Central Texas to present healthy and delicious meals based on cultural recipes, presenting speeches and workshops, and creating health education curriculum to distribute at community events, The Kitchen Diva Health Outreach Program is working to combat diet-related illnesses like high blood pressure and diabetes.
Since 2012, The Kitchen Diva Health Outreach Program has provided healthy lunches at community events held during significant African American celebrations such as Black History Month and Juneteenth. Participants are served fresh ingredients that may be new to them, and shown that when prepared the right way, many of these foods have a high nutritional content and are delicious.