Connect
To Top

Meet Jacqueline King Schiller of The Feel Good Kitchen

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jacqueline King Schiller.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Jacqueline. So, let’s start at the beginning, and we can move on from there.
My journey as a chef, teacher, and author started ironically when I began working as a model at the age of 15. Due to the pressures of the fashion industry, I started counting calories with total disregard as to whether what I was eating was actually good for me. Being skinny was the ultimate goal, without a thought about being healthy. Like many young women, I saw food as the enemy.

By the time I was in my early twenties, I started to notice some unwelcome side effects of my restrictive eating. I felt tired and moody all the time and began having anxiety attacks. On the outside, I was living what seemed like a glamorous life, traveling all over the world, but I couldn’t enjoy it fully because I didn’t know how to really take care of myself. That’s when a friend introduced me to yoga which led me to understand that in order to feel good mentally and emotionally, you have to take care of yourself physically. Seems obvious enough, but at the time it was a revelation! Learning to cook was an extension of learning to take care of myself, to literally find the nourishment I needed

I was living in Milan at the time, and there is no better place to learn about food or cooking than in Italy. The Italians have such a wonderful appreciation for fresh, healthy ingredients and food made from scratch. I couldn’t help but change the way I looked at things. Thanks to some great Italian friends I learned to prepare (and enjoy!) fresh, delicious, unprocessed food. We would spend weekend mornings at the markets, cook the afternoon away, and spend evenings at the table eating, talking, and laughing over the meal we created. I discovered a sense of pleasure around food that I never thought possible.

This led to much experimenting in the kitchen and research on nutrition and wellness. I was amazed how eating well, exercising regularly, and having tools for relaxation can improve day to day life so much. I realized that nothing feels (or looks) better than being healthy. Finding a sense of joy and freedom around food rather than anxiety made me want to share what I had learned with the world. I started a blog called The Feel Good Kitchen and went to culinary school with the intention of teaching others.

One of the people I started teaching healthy cooking to is my best friend, Abbie Cornish. Those lessons led us to write a book about the cooking that we’ve explored together- Food that is comforting and indulgent, but also incredibly health supportive and energizing. In Pescan: A Feel Good Cookbook We share recipes and techniques that have changed our lives for the better. I hope it will be helpful to a lot of people. We’ve been working on the book for over two years and are thrilled that it will be released by Abrams Books March 26th, 2019 and available at most major booksellers.

Has it been a smooth road?
I think both the best and the hardest thing about being a creative entrepreneur is being your own boss. People often fantasize about not having a boss. I sometimes think the opposite- that it would actually be nice to have someone tell me what to do, to know what’s expected of me in a certain timeframe. When you’re working by and for yourself, you have to create those goals and deadlines internally and stay motivated to meet them. This is often easier said than done.

With my personality, I’ve found it helpful to work with a life coach. It helps to clarify my goals and to keep me on track. It would be nice if I could do it all on my own, but I need that extra push and accountability to keep things moving forward efficiently.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with The Feel Good Kitchen – tell our readers more, for example, what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.

I provide content and inspiration for healthier, happier living through good food and nutrition.  In addition to my book and online platform, I offer private lessons and workshops. My focus is on Pescan cooking (plant-based + seafood). During my research, I found that a diet filled with vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts, and legumes, and supplemented with eggs and seafood, made me feel so much more energized and healthier than I ever had before so that is what I love to share with my readers and students

I definitely feel most proud when I get comments from people about how my recipes have helped them with various health issues, weight loss, or simply feeling better overall. I also love when moms send me pictures of their smiling kids eating something they made using one of my recipes. It’s the best.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and the least?
I’m a native and I love Los Angeles so much! It used to not be cool to say that, but I think that has changed over the last ten years. I even hear New Yorkers say it, which was unheard of at one time. LA has become a driving force in American culture beyond what is being created by the film and television industry. Some of the most exciting art, theater, innovation, and food can be found right here, right now.

My love letter to this city could go on for ages, so, for now, I’ll just pick three things I love about LA:

  1. I love the diversity of the city. There is something for everyone, no matter what your interests are. That is especially true when it comes to our restaurants. You can travel the world through food without ever leaving the county (though I might be willing to drive to the OC for great tacos).

Like countless Angelenos I have been inspired by our late great LA Times food critic Jonathan Gold to see our city’s food through a cultural lens, to use it as a roadmap for exploration into neighborhoods that I might not have an occasion to go to otherwise.

  1. I love how we live in this vibrant metropolis but still have the ability to stay connected to nature. Even sitting in traffic on Santa Monica Boulevard I’m often in awe of its beauty as I look out at snow-capped mountains against a bright blue sky framed with palm trees.

If you are ever feeling depressed or full of self-pity, go outside in the sunshine, or go for a hike at sunset, look out at the ocean and be grateful. Sometimes we forget we live in paradise and need a little reminder.

  1. Most people I’ve met here are trying to be better in whatever way the can. For some that’s “always hustling”, for others it means meditating every day like it’s their job or trying to eat as clean as a Buddhist monk. There is a lot of young energy in the city- people who come here from other places to make their dreams come true.

The city is filled with optimism but also a lot of disillusionment. Not everyone makes it in the way they set out to. There comes a reckoning when that realization sets in for people. People have to figure out what to do next. This is, at least in part, why we are also a city of seekers, people looking for a deeper meaning.

In LA it’s Ok to tell someone that you’re on your way to therapy, that you are doing a breath-work workshop, or that you’re asking the universe for guidance. Maybe even on the same day. No one will judge you. They’ll just know that you’re trying to figure it out in this crazy town like we all are. It’s not the same in other cities I’ve lived in. In LA it’s OK to reach for the stars, and it’s also OK to admit you’ve fallen and need help getting back up.

What I dislike about the city is that housing is so expensive. Overall Angelenos spend a bigger chunk of our paychecks on housing than in most other places, and I have friends that have left because of it. Even so, there’s nowhere else I’d rather be.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Ashley Randall Photography – http://www.ashleyrandallphotography.com, Farmers Market Photo by Yopoosh http://yopoosh.com

Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

More in