Q+A with Founder Lily Kunin
Lily Kunin lives a super fresh life. More specifically, it seems that she is surrounded by fresh, beautiful fruits and veggies- perfectly positioned on her chic, marble kitchen counter…waiting patiently for their Instagram moment…at all times.
Owner and creator of popular recipe and lifestyle blog, Clean Food Dirty City, Lily Kunin wants you to eat food that makes you feel as good as it tastes. PREACH, GIRL! It is obvious that Lily has great taste (literally & figuratively). Not only does her aesthetic rock (ya gotta check out the minimalistic beauty that is her Instagram), but Lily’s got the brains to back it up! Lily is a certified holistic health coach, and has dedicated her much of her time learning about modern functional medicine. So basically….we trust her with our lives/plates. Lily definitely keeps busy, having recently published her first cookbook, Good Clean Food, and with a highly anticipated brick-and mortar wellness space opening in NYC, soon!
We chit chatted about how to remain (relatively) “sane” in NYC, and what responsible eating means to a certified health coach…
PS! Stay tuned for one of Lily’s plant-based recipes, coming to the by CHLOE. blog, soon!
Photos courtesy of Lily Kunin.
by CHLOE.: Introduce yourself.
LK: Hi! I’m Lily, creator of Clean Food Dirty City, author of the cookbook Good Clean Food, and founder of the soon to open Clean Market in NYC, a wellness space with innovative services (IV drip, infrared saunas, cryotherapy), functional food + tonic bar, and modern apothecary market.
bC: What inspired you to become a plant-based cook and health coach?
LK: I was always comfortable in the kitchen and grew up watching family in the food world. My own personal experience with severe migraines and vertigo led me to explore food from a more functional perspective. This encouraged me to become trained as a health coach, and work at a functional medicine practice. It’s all about good food that makes you feel good too.
bC: You come from a family of chefs. What is one piece of advice about cooking that has stayed with you?
LK: Cook simply using the best quality, seasonal ingredients.
bC: What’s your favorite (vegan) thing you’ve ever cooked?
LK: It’s so hard to choose just one thing, since I cook mostly vegan! I’m a big fan of the zucchini lasagna in my cookbook – I make it with a classic tomato sauce and brazil nut ricotta and bake it until nice and bubbly. So good!
bC: When did you realize that a cookbook was the next step in your professional career?
LK: I was really lucky that my editor was first and foremost a fan of my blog and Instagram. She really saw the vision for my book and convinced me that it was the best next step in my career. It actually wasn’t until I started writing my book that I took the leap to quit my job (I was still working full time in education)!
bC: NYC is a crazy (and dirty-as you put it) place. What is your advice to fellow city-dwellers, to stay healthy, calm and grounded amidst the insanity?
LK: This is such a good question. NYC can be thrilling but it can be extra taxing on the nervous system. I love to create an oasis at home that can make me feel worlds away when needed (it can be as simple as lighting some candles and taking a bath with Dr. Singha’s mustard soak). Finding an hour to rest and relax a day (reading, bath time, a leisurely walk, meditation, or a gentle yoga class).
bC: Where do you see yourself, and your business in 5 years?
LK: My store, Clean Market is opening this spring in NYC! This will be my biggest accomplishment to date and I have a big vision and goals for it. My mission with Clean Market is to connect people with the products and services that elevate their well-being. Stay tuned!
bC: What’s your favorite dish at by CHLOE.?
LK: The Classic Burger on a GF bun with Sweet Potato Air-Baked Fries and Chipotle Aioli. Yum!
bC: What does “Eat well. Eat with purpose.” mean to you? This is the by CHLOE mission
LK: To me this means eating real, whole foods that are prepared in a delicious way. Eating responsibly and with awareness – whether vegan or not – and sourcing your foods to support local farmers and responsible farming practices.
Emoji that best describes you? 👩🌾
Favorite place on earth? Nantucket (or the Santa Monica Farmer’s Market).
Kitchen appliance that you most identify with? My Le Creuset pot.
Cocktail of choice? Mezcal on the rocks with an orange slice.
Top 3 restaurants (excluding by CHLOE. of course!)? abcV in NYC, Gjusta & Jon and Vinnys in LA.
Favorite food? Tacos + chips + guac.
Top 3 favorite fashion brands? My closet is basically Reformation & Madewell. Also All Birds and OV.
Early bird or night owl? Early bird.
Choice super hero power? Move things with my eyes like Matilda (this would be super helpful when cooking and pulling ingredients)!
Go-to workout? Dance cardio.
Juice or smoothie? Smoothie.
3 objects you can’t live without? In the winter my True Botanicals Renew Oil, a blender, and my bathtub.
Whatcha readin’? Delivering Happiness by Tony Hsieh.
Weird personal fact? I used to watch a lot of Oprah 🙂