Meet Laura Miner
"What began with posting fun recipes to Instagram in 2014 has steadily built up into a strong, encouraging community that I truly love. When I’m not kept busy working and raising three wonderful children, I’m creating approachable recipes focused on gluten-free, low carb/keto, paleo, vegetarian/pescatarian, and Whole30 diets."
Recipes From Cook at Home Mom
Born to Grill™ With Cook At Home Mom
Hi there, grill masters! I’m Laura Miner, creator of “Cook at Home Mom!”
My passion for cooking started in my childhood. When health problems started popping up in teenagehood and college (why, how many sixteen-year-olds do you know visiting osteo specialists?), I started taking my nutrition into my own hands. You could say hearing a diagnosis of “Shame about the inflammation” and a treatment plan of “Advil, Ibuprofen, and live with the pain because nothing can be done” didn’t exactly sit right with me. That’s when I began a lifetime of tinkering around with food. You won’t believe how much of a motivator inflammatory conditions like Rosacea can be, let me tell you.
Stumbling across the Whole30 lifestyle opened my eyes to a whole new way of taking care of myself. With renewed passion, I began adjusting my usual kitchen routine with a new perspective: lower on the inflammation, higher on the health. Thankfully, it quickly became clear to me that I didn’t have to give up the things I loved. That’s why my personal philosophy is all about feeling your best and still enjoying the food when you can — while finding ways to enjoy new food and live well. If that means I get to have a few more cocktails with a hot grill nearby, then hey... twist my arm, why don’t you?
And that’s why I started Cook at Home Mom, promoting real food for real families. What began with posting fun recipes to Instagram in 2014 has steadily built up into a strong, encouraging community that I truly love. When I’m not kept busy working and raising three wonderful children, I’m creating approachable recipes focused on gluten-free, low carb/keto, paleo, vegetarian/pescatarian, and Whole30 diets. I’m always adding delicious concoctions. Come take a look!
Q & A With Laura Miner
How did you get your start in the industry?
Kind of stumbled into it, actually! So, the context here is my husband and I had just moved to Virginia — new mom, new state, and now I’m suddenly home day in, day out. At the time, Instagram is where you went to find a community, so I started posting pictures of my dishes and began making friends with other people looking at healthier diets. What started as an outlet for fun became a challenge; soon I was food writing, teaching myself new food photography and, well, when you do something long enough...
Why do you do what you do?
In short, the goal is to teach anybody to cook accessibly. Healthy food isn’t boring food — boring food is boring food. So, in the spirit of “anybody means anybody,” I perch my four-year-old on my lap (“From the mouths of babes,” so they say!) to scroll through the pictures with me while I ask him questions about how to make it. It’s too often that someone doesn’t know how to cook, and leans on things that are convenient. I get it. Cooking can be daunting when you’re still green. But my job now is to show those people how easy yet fulfilling it is.
Could you tell us about your earliest food memory?
A lot of my childhood was spent being my Italian grandmother’s little assistant in the kitchen. Makes sense that one of my first memories was helping her make a great, big pot of Italian tomato sauce. I must’ve been 4, maybe 5 years old? The sauce came out great, in spite of the secret ingredient. That was the last time I helped out in the kitchen with a band-aid on my finger!
What nurtures your spark for cooking?
Family. The warmest memories in my heart are sitting around the table as a kid and eating with my family. Now that I have my own children and family, it’s so rewarding to give them good food and watch them enjoy it. It lends itself to spending good quality time together. We thrive because of what we do as a family — not just the food — but the experiences we share.
For entertaining company, let’s talk about your go-to BBQ dish.
Halibut is my hands-down favorite protein, and I’ll substitute it for chicken in flexible dishes. We’re lucky enough to have a beautiful farm nearly where we’ll take the children and pluck fresh strawberries for a delicious salsa that pairs well with it — not to mention all the fresh veggies at the market!
With that in mind, what’s your favorite BBQ dish?
Grilled zucchini is one of my favorite summertime dishes, especially with fresh lime juice. We used to have a big garden before downsizing, filled with all this zucchini and summer squashthat exploded in my garden. Zucchini doesn’t get enough credit. I could eat it for breakfast, grill it on a burger, whatever!
How do you come up with your recipe ideas?
I try to use whatever’s in season, between my garden and the local farmer’s market. But I’ll balance that with what other people are searching for on Pinterest and Instagram — Why be an answerin search of a problem, right? — and I’ll listen to what my audience is talking about, then be responsive to that. Here’s what it boils down to: how can I make something overdone interesting and new, but with a healthier spin?
[What's an example that came up recently?]
Oh, that’s easy. Meal prep! It’s arduous, it’s time consuming, and few of us want to eat the same thing 5 days in a row, right? Whipping up a big batch of something and eating it for the week is fine, but that doesn’t really work for everyone. So, I got to thinking: chicken is a staple in these dishes. How can you spice upthe same big batch? Voila — chicken marinades! That’s an idea spurred out listening to my audience and solving their problems.
Can you tell us what’s on the horizon for “Cook at Home Mom?”
A cookbook! That’s my big dream project. Most of this year will bespent prepping that for 2022. In the meantime, my big side project is to make a new recipe eBook and keep trucking along with the blog, you know? You wouldn’t believe how many delicious recipe ideas I’ve got lined up. Stay tuned!