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Meet Katie Farina of Katie’s Healing Kitchen in Mission Hills

Today we’d like to introduce you to Katie Farina.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I grew up surrounded by food. By day, I helped my parents with their business selling fresh pasta at local farmers’ markets and by night, I assisted my dad in the kitchen with endless recipe testing. Eventually, my parents took their love of food and turned it into a successful restaurant.

Even though I grew up in the kitchen, my passion for cooking did not peak until my mom was diagnosed with cancer. It was then that I first made the connection between what we eat and its strong impact on our health. During the time of my mother’s diagnosis, I was in college pursuing a degree in Social Work. Instead of studying for school, I found myself spending countless hours learning about healing foods and practicing in the kitchen. I loved the simple concept that tasty food could also be healthy.

After graduating from college, I realized I wanted to pursue both my passions: Social Justice and Food. I worked in restaurants to develop my culinary skills while still being a counselor in a group home for troubled youth. After three years of hard work, I reached a point where I could finally tackle my next goal: Culinary School.

In June 2013, I graduated from the Natural Epicurean Academy of Culinary Arts, a Professional Chef Training Institute. After graduating, Katie’s Healing Kitchen was born! We teach healthy plant-based gluten-free cooking classes all over San Diego and Mexico. My goal is for my guests to realize that healthy food can be delicious, satisfying and easy to make. While at the same time making the connection that the food we eat has a direct impact on our health.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Having my own business is the greatest joy and challenge in my life. I’ve put everything I have into my business and have made many personal sacrifices to get to where I am today. When you’re in the public eye you are often most exposed to criticism and judgment as well. Luckily I have an amazing support system who encourage and ensure I stay focused on the things that matter.

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Katie’s Healing Kitchen – what should we know?
Katie’s Healing Kitchen teaches plant-based (the less scary word for vegan) and gluten-free cooking classes in San Diego. We focus specifically on using foods that are directly linked to healing. But more than that it’s a fun space to learn about ways to eat more veggies, making cooking easier and mealtime fun and interesting. Our classes are fun for everyone, you don’t need to be vegan to enjoy them. In fact, 90% of my clients are not vegan, they’re just looking for ways to make healthy and delicious meals everyone in their family will enjoy.

Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role?
Katie’s Healing Kitchen would not exist without my amazing family. My mom has been my biggest cheerleader through this whole process, to this day I bounce every idea off of her. She’s made my dream her dream.

My dad is my biggest inspiration, he’s taught me with hard work anything is possible. Growing up I saw my parents struggle for a dream and now after years of hard work they have one of the most successful restaurants in San Diego. He is also the best chef and has a true talent and intuition for cooking. He inspires me in every aspect of my life and has taught me every great lesson in and out of the kitchen.

My biggest support system is my husband. I can’t even express how many times I’ve almost quit my business, overwhelmed by the magnitude or afraid of putting myself out there, but he is always there to remind me of my dreams. I know he will never let me give up. He helps with every aspect of my business, especially the dishes, and for that, I am forever grateful.


  • Most cooking classes are $50, which includes a full dinner, cooking class, recipe packet and 2 glasses of wine or kombucha

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Amy Angelo Photography

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