46 episodes

Cooking lessons to help you live happier, simpler, and smarter in the kitchen. Jess Dang Founder of award-winning meal plan service Cook Smarts is here to make you a more confident and organized home cook!

In the Kitchen With Cook Smarts Jess Dang

    • Food
    • 5.0 • 71 Ratings

Cooking lessons to help you live happier, simpler, and smarter in the kitchen. Jess Dang Founder of award-winning meal plan service Cook Smarts is here to make you a more confident and organized home cook!

    #34: From Pastry Chef to Cook Smarts Project Manager: An Interview with Jackie Sun

    #34: From Pastry Chef to Cook Smarts Project Manager: An Interview with Jackie Sun

    Jackie Sun has been one of the greatest blessings to Cook Smarts. She was the first person I hired and took me from a one-woman show to a two-woman show. Not only has she proved herself to be an integral part of the team, but she is such a gentle, caring soul and has made me a better person over the years we’ve worked together. 
     
    In today’s episode, we’re getting to know this multi-talented lady and also taking a walk down memory lane. I cannot believe that Jackie has been working with me for 7 years -- time absolutely flies! Among the many stories you’ll get to hear:
     
    How Jackie became a pastry chef and how she made the transition to working for Cook Smarts and learned an entirely new set of skills All the different hats she’s worn over the years at Cook Smarts and what she loves doing most now How working at Cook Smarts has helped her start her own company Wondershins How she meal plans and cooks for a mixed-diet household  
    If you love getting a behind-the-scenes peek at small businesses and love a transformation story, then this podcast episode is for you!
     
    Want to be a super supporter of the show and home cooking? Please tell a friend about our podcast and leave us a review on Apple Podcast (https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/in-the-kitchen-with-cook-smarts/id1454754429?mt=2). If we read your review on a future podcast, you’ll win a Cook Smarts tote bag!
     

    • 54 min
    #18: Meet Sarah Byun our Kitchen Happiness Cheerleader

    #18: Meet Sarah Byun our Kitchen Happiness Cheerleader

    We’re on a little summer break, so I’m introducing you to another one of our Cook Smarts team members!
     
    If every company had a Sarah Byun on the team, companies would have many, many more happy customers. Sarah started off as a Cook Smarts customer in 2014 and then joined our team as our Kitchen Happiness Cheerleader in the spring of 2015. Since then, she has helped countless customers get their questions answered, concerns addressed, typos on their emails fixed, always with the most cheerful demeanor. 
     
    In today’s episode, you’ll get to know this amazing multi-tasking mama and also get a behind-the-scenes look at our small but mighty company. Plus, you’ll get to hear:
     
    How Sarah juggles being a homeschooling mom with her Cook Smarts responsibilities All the hats she wears because she does way more than answer customer service emails The negative customer service email she had to answer in her application to get the job!  
    Want to be a super supporter of the show and home cooking? Please tell a friend about our podcast and leave us a review on Apple Podcast (https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/in-the-kitchen-with-cook-smarts/id1454754429?mt=2) . If we share your review in a future episode, we’ll send you a Cook Smarts tote bag to bring you more fun and eco-friendly grocery shopping!

    • 43 min
    #3: Meet Jess Smith Our Meal Plan Developer

    #3: Meet Jess Smith Our Meal Plan Developer

    We’re on a little summer break, so we’re rerunning one of my favorite episodes!
     
    One of the best things that’s happened to Cook Smarts is bringing on a dedicated meal plan developer. Jess Smith joined the team in the spring of 2015, all the way from Thailand and has taken our recipe development process and the quality of our meals to a whole other level.
     
    In today’s episode, we’re getting to know this multi-talented lady and also giving you a behind the scenes of our small little company. Plus, you’ll get to hear:
     
    How she made a huge career switch going from working for the State Department in Thailand to working in food full time and all the lessons she’s learned during this transition What it’s like to go from food blogging to getting feedback -- sometimes less than positive feedback -- on every recipe you create The most challenging part of the job and what’s gotten easier over time  
    If you’re someone who’s wanted to make a career change and pursue your true passion, this episode is definitely not to be missed. Another added bonus: I also offer some advice to the entrepreneurs out there about building out your team. 
     
    For all the links mentioned in this episode and to see a picture of Jess’ family of 5, head to our show notes: www.cooksmarts.com/podcast/3
     

    • 40 min
    #33: Cook Without Recipes by Understanding Flavor Profiles

    #33: Cook Without Recipes by Understanding Flavor Profiles

    For the full set of links from today’s episode, head to the show notes at www.cooksmarts.com/podcast/33
     
    In today’s episode, I’m covering the five main flavor profiles: salty / umami, sweet, sour, bitter, and spice. Most of us are just following recipes when we’re in the kitchen but if you develop an understanding of flavor and how it’s created using a wide variety of ingredients, you’ll be free to go off-roading and become much more confident tinkering with recipes (or even creating your own!). 
     
    Here’s what we’ll cover:
    The concept of “The Flavor Star,” and how flavor profiles balance and enhance one another. The ingredients you can use to create each flavor profile. We’ll be going well beyond the basics of salt, sugar, lemon juice, and pepper. We’ll dissect a few recipes to understand how different ingredients contributed to its flavor profile.  
    Have a listen and become a flavor star! You’ll even get to hear me sing a few tunes in this one 🎶🎤.
     
    Want to be a super supporter of the show and home cooking? Please tell a friend about our podcast and leave us a review on Apple Podcast (https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/in-the-kitchen-with-cook-smarts/id1454754429?mt=2). If we read your review on a future podcast, you’ll win a Cook Smarts tote bag!

    • 35 min
    #32: Creating a DIY Kitchen Summer Camp with Katie Kimball, Creator of Kids Cook Real Food

    #32: Creating a DIY Kitchen Summer Camp with Katie Kimball, Creator of Kids Cook Real Food

    In today’s podcast episode, we are bringing in teacher extraordinaire Katie Kimball to give us a few cooking and parenting lessons. Katie is an advocate for healthy kids cooking, a blogger, former teacher and the founder of the Kids Cook Real Food eCourse. Her blog, Kitchen Stewardship helps families stay healthy without going crazy, and she’s on a mission to connect families around healthy food and teach every child in America to cook.
     
    We are actually going through Katie’s course right now, and it’s been so fun. Katie is one of those people who was just born to teach kids. She has a naturally warm demeanor, a gift for explaining concepts in a way that anyone can understand, and a rapport with kids that cannot be taught. Plus, she’s got amazing camera presence! My kids are learning a lot from Mrs. Kimball and definitely loving their new kitchen skills, and I am learning a thing or two about parenting and communicating with kids from Katie through the course, which is such an added bonus.
     
    Because of our businesses, I have known Katie for many years now, and I’ve always been so impressed with how smart she is but also how generous and thoughtful, and I am so excited to introduce her to you today to talk more about her program and the importance of teaching kids how to cook.
     
    In today’s episode, we chat about:
     
    How important it is to teach kids how to cook and how parents can do it without making it more work How to make your own DIY kitchen summer camp What kitchen skills children should learn at various developmental stages How to encourage a child to help in the kitchen when they show little interest in cooking  
    Check out this Knife Skills Lesson Katie is making available for free to the Cook Smarts community -- it is appropriate for children of any age! https://www.kidscookrealfood.com/cooksmarts
     
    Want to be a super supporter of the show and home cooking? Please tell a friend about our podcast and leave us a review on Apple Podcast (https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/in-the-kitchen-with-cook-smarts/id1454754429?mt=2). If we read your review on a future podcast, you’ll win a Cook Smarts tote bag!

    • 45 min
    #31: Reducing Grocery Trips & Meal Planning with Extra Adults: An Interview with Member Lauren Davis

    #31: Reducing Grocery Trips & Meal Planning with Extra Adults: An Interview with Member Lauren Davis

    In today’s podcast episode, we’re checking in with another one of our all-star community members Lauren Davis. Lauren lives in the San Francisco Bay Area and is the mom to 4 year old Gavin. Her husband is immunocompromised so she has been extra diligent about staying away from the grocery stores and this definitely requires some next level planning.
     
    In addition to the adjustments required for the pandemic, her family has also moved in with her parents, which is introducing another element into her planning process. However, using a sophisticated Post-It Note system (head to our show notes to see www.cooksmarts.com/podcast/31), not only has Lauren been able to get it done in the kitchen, but seems to be thriving during this time!
     
    In our chat, Lauren shares:
     
    How she gets 4 different adults to agree on what they’re eating How she’s meal planning so that she only needs to grocery shop just once every 3 to 4 weeks How she’s managing her mental mindset during this time  
    During our rapid fire round, Lauren shares a kitchen tool that I’ve never heard of. This spoon has a flat edge, and it’s her favorite kitchen tool. She’s never been able to find another one, so we’re on a hunt to help her find a backup in case this one breaks. Have you seen something like this? We need the help of our entire podcast community in this treasure hunt!
     
    For photos of Lauren’s Post-It Note system and very-important spoon, head to the show notes at www.cooksmarts.com/podcast/31
     
    Want to be a super supporter of the show and home cooking? Please tell a friend about our podcast and leave us a review on Apple Podcast (https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/in-the-kitchen-with-cook-smarts/id1454754429?mt=2). If we read your review on a future podcast, you’ll win a Cook Smarts tote bag!
     

    • 45 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
71 Ratings

71 Ratings

DerWachtelschlagFliegender ,

A different approach to home cooking

I found this podcast through Didn’t I Just Feed You? It has a slightly different, more professional take on home cooking than a lot of cooking podcasts that are 100% amateur focused. The episodes have something for everyone and I have definitely picked up tips.

Murderhornet1 ,

Good even if you don’t use cooksmarts

I had never heard of cooksmarts until I found this podcast. I’ve never tried their service but really like the podcast. Jess is very genuine and she provides good strategies for cooking. I really like when she does interviews with her members (except Lauren Davis seemed really phony...).

HiThere726469392 ,

Cook Smarts has revolutionized dinner!

The Cook Smarts podcast is an incredible resource. Cooking delicious food at home is a priority for our family, and Cook Smarts has completely revolutionized our meal planning, shopping and cooking process. I am a Cook Smarts subscriber, and the podcast is full of incredible tips and information to make that process even better and easier. I don’t even know how I did it before Cook Smarts! I don’t know the Cook Smarts leadership personally, but Jess seems very down to earth, sharing her kitchen struggles and victories in an endearing way and always supporting her subscribers and followers for their own cooking successes.

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