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Anxiety Isn't On My Ingredient List

Learning to cook doesn’t have to be stressful!

Photos: Unsplash

All of my young adult life I have never been able to cook. I was that person who had the capability to “burn ice”. I wish I was being dramatic about how much I lacked cooking skills.

When I got to college, most of my friends had apartments that had full kitchens. Personally, I lived at home during college, but even with a full kitchen at my disposal, I had zero cooking experience. While everyone took turns making dinner, I ordered take-out.

Every time I saw a recipe online that looked amazing I would say to myself, “Wow, that looks amazing, but I’ll never be able to recreate that”.

I experienced so much anxiety in the kitchen that I avoided cooking at all costs.

Over the last year, though, I decided to face my fear and try my hand at being a chef. I was tired of eating out all the time and spending unnecessary money. And let me tell you, it was so worth it!

Now, I’m no Martha Stewart, but what I can tell you is that it was a worthwhile journey. And here’s how I did it!

Start small

Cooking is like everything else in life: you have to take baby steps. You can’t learn to make a four-course meal overnight.!

When I started my journey, I began with pasta and a simple butter sauce. While the pasta was easy to boil and serve, the satisfaction of knowing I made something myself was a whole different ball game. It had four ingredients: butter, garlic, oregano, and red roasted pepper.

I was able to step outside my comfort zone and make something that tasted great.

I had to walk before I could run in the kitchen (don’t actually run) and pasta with a simple sauce was a great place to start.

Find a mentor

I’m lucky enough to have a friend who is an amazing cook. She has taught me every recipe I know.

When making dinner together, she teaches me along the way. Having someone beside me to make sure I didn’t make too many mistakes really took my mind off my anxiety in the kitchen.

Photos: Unsplash

Every few weeks, we make a meal together. She offers me advice, new skills, and peace of mind that someone will guide me in the right direction when I get overwhelmed.


Having patience was the hardest part of this process. Not only did I want the food to cook immediately, but I also wanted to be a master chef overnight.

Let me tell you, neither of those is possible.

You’re going to make mistakes and probably burn some chicken and the process, but that’s okay.

No matter what happens, you can always start over and learn from your mistakes!

When I first started, I opened the wrong end of a pepper shaker and dumped half the pepper bottle into a vegetable stir fry. It was the worst dish I’ve ever tasted.

But I learned not to rush and I never made that mistake again.

Give yourself some grace and take a long deep breath.

Your skills will improve, it just takes time.

So go make that recipe you’ve seen all over TikTok!

~trust the good vibes and spread all the love,


Here’s a recipe my mentor taught me. It’s great for beginners!

1 pound of ground turkey

1 large egg

¼ cup of diced red onion

¼ cup of sun-dried tomatoes

½ cup of fetta cheese

1 cup of panko bread crumbs

1 tbsp of salt

1 tbsp pepper

1 tbsp of red pepper

1 tbsp of oregano

Roll into medium-sized balls and air fry at 360 degrees for 11 minutes



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