Mindy Carroll has turned a part-time job cooking for others into a full-time business and has opened Fresh Foodies. She hasn’t started her Christmas shopping yet because she’s too busy providing top-notch food prep services to our area. iMeet this deliciously sweet entrepreneur who loves to cook.
Welcome to iMeet, Mindy, we hear you’re a local gal through and through...
I am from Paducah - born and raised. I did move away for college and lived in Lexington. And when I was married, I lived in Virginia Beach for 4 1/2 years. In Virginia, I worked for a celebrity catering company and it was a blast! So, I knew when I moved back to my hometown that’s what I wanted to do.
I have a twin sister - but we are like night and day. Lol. She’s been super supportive of my new business.
Tell us about your family...
I have a 25-year-old daughter, Hannah, and a few rescue cats. I’m not married, but I am in a relationship.
Tell us about your new business...
I’ve been a caterer for 25 years, but most of the time I also had a full time job in sales. Cell phone sales for four years and then medical sales for 15 years. In 2016, I gave all that up and became a full time cook and here we are. It can only go up from here!
Why did you decide to open Fresh Foodies?
I was going to a CrossFit gym to work out and a few of the girls asked me to make some pre-prepared meals for them as there were limited options in Paducah. My friend Nora was my first, best and longest customer!
Once I started making their meals, it grew fast. I began renting the kitchen at the culinary school on the weekends to cook, and even then, I couldn’t keep up with my full time job and cooking all weekend. So, I found a building and moved in on April of 2016. I also gave up my full time medical sales job that month.
We quickly outgrew that spot, and in April of 2017, we moved out to look for a larger location. It’s taken a while to find the right spot, but we ended up at the first place we looked at in 2017. It has just taken us a year and half to get the price right. I was renting a commercial kitchen all that time, but here we are with 1,500 square feet of a building that is all mine!
What are some of the things that you offer?
The main thing we do differently than other meal prep companies is customize. We customize everything. We base all our meals on our customers dietary needs or likes - whether it be low carb, keto, paleo, Mediterranean, or we take requests.
What is your favorite food that you offer?
Chicken Piccata!! It’s easy to make as well. In mine, I use butter, lemon juice, cream, white wine, and tons of capers and mushrooms. Then you add chicken and angel hair pasta, and serve with fresh parmesan on top. Yum yum. It’s my favorite go-to because I love capers.
Where do you get your inspiration for the meals you cook?
Mainly each week, I try to think of things I haven’t cooked and how they would fit into meal prep (Would they be good heated up? Would they look good and smell good two days later?) and then I think of what would look pretty in the boxes.
What is the best part of owning your own business?
It’s all mine! I love owning my own building. I can come to work and be there by myself and look around and just say, “It’s all mine and I made it happen.”
What is the hardest?
It’s all mine! Lol. The challenges are just small speed bumps. Some days I’m exhausted but it’s the best feeling ever and then I get to do it again the next day. I love what I do, and I’m so lucky to have a good team. It makes me very happy and proud that my daughter enjoys coming to work with me some days.
Have you started Christmas shopping yet?
No, I’m usually too busy at Christmas with work. I do some online shopping in the next few weeks to get it done.
What will you be asking Santa for this year?
World peace and happiness within myself. I’m easy to get gifts for!
What is your favorite guilty pleasure?
Ding dongs, John Denver & Steven Seagal movies!
Are you ready for snow or are you a lover of all things warm?
I love the snow and can’t wait! Let it snow! However, I won’t ever turn down a beach vacation either.