Kalyn's Kitchen

About Kalyn’s Kitchen (How I Lost 42 Pounds and Became a Food Blogger)

Photo by Derek Smith

What is This Blog About?
My name is Kalyn Denny and Kalyn’s Kitchen is the home-cooking blog I started in 2005 when I’d lost over 40 pounds on the original South Beach Diet (affiliate link) and wanted to share my recipes with the world.  Now fast forward over 15 years later, and I’m still focused on healthy cooking and have transitioned from teaching elementary school to life as a full-time food blogger. My blog is focused on Creative Carb-Conscious Recipes, and you may want to read this post about different diet types and this blog to see how Kalyn’s Kitchen has evolved through the years.

What hasn’t change is the focus on carb-conscious eating and most recipes you’ll find here are low-carb and gluten-free, many are original South Beach Diet friendly and some are Keto, dairy-free, Paleo, Whole 30, and vegetarian or vegan. (If you’re following a certain way of eating you can use the Diet Type Index to see what recipes I have for your particular way of eating. There are also orange diet-type tags at the top of each recipe showing which diets I feel that recipe is suitable for.)

The carb-conscious recipes I like to create are often suitable for weight-loss or controlling blood sugar, even though I am not advocating one specific eating plan. And I’m not a low-carb fanatic and not every single recipe here is ultra low carb, but all the recipes on the site are geared towards carb-conscious eating and many thousands of people per day use this site as a source for the deliciously healthy low-carb recipes that I love to create.

Information That May Be Helpful:
Have questions? Check out the Frequently Asked Questions which might answer them. And if not, here’s How to Contact Kalyn.

Support for the South Beach Diet:
Because The original South Beach Diet was so life-changing for me, I tried to make this site a resource for other people who are following it.  You can read more about that on the page for Low Carb Diet / South Beach Diet Information and Resources.

What Other Diets are My Recipes Suitable For?
I try to make my blog useful for people following many types of carb-conscious diets.  You can use photo-index pages for the following diet types:

Low Carb  Recipes that are low in carbs and suitable for any type of Low-Carbohydrate Diet.

Can Be Keto The lowest carb/highest fat recipes on the site, suitable for Ketogenic diets.

Low-Glycemic Carb-conscious recipes suitable for Low-Glycemic Diets. These are recipes that might not be strictly low in carbs, but have ingredients that don’t raise blood sugar.

South Beach Diet Phase One  Recipes for Phase One of the original South Beach Diet.

South Beach Diet Phase Two  Recipes for Phase Two of the original South Beach Diet. (Remember any Phase One recipe can be eaten for Phase Two.)

Can be Paleo  Dairy-Free and Grain-Free recipes that are Paleo or Whole 30 or which can be with specific ingredient changes.

Dairy Free  Recipes with no dairy products.

Gluten Free  Gluten-Free recipes.

Meatless Both Vegetarian and Vegan recipes.

Vegan  Recipes with no meat or animal products.

What Other Categories Can Help Find Recipes of a Certain Type?

Besides the diet-specific categories mentioned above, you can also find categories that show my personal Favorites, recipes that Can Freeze, recipes that are Easy to Cook, Kid Friendly recipes, Slow Cooker  or Pressure Cooker Recipes, and recipes I’ve featured with only Five Ingredients. And for people (like me) who like to cook on the weekend and have leftovers to eat during the week, there’s a category for recipes suitable for that called Weekend Food Prep. Check out the entire RECIPE INDEX to see all the different ways to find recipes by diet type, by recipe preparation method, or by ingredient!

How Kalyn’s Kitchen Got Started
Often people ask me how I started the blog, and Kalyn’s Kitchen actually began with an offhand remark made by my brother Rand. One day in early 2005 I was complaining about how hard it was to keep up with friends asking for recipes, and he said, “Maybe you should just put your recipes on a blog.” At that time I had no idea there were people on the internet writing about food, and certainly could never have imagined how food blogging would ultimately change my life.

My Family is the Greatest
My talented brother Rand still does graphics for the blog and creates beautiful pins and Facebook videos, and Kalyn’s Kitchen certainly wouldn’t be the same without him. (Thanks Rand!) He’s also a willing taste tester whenever he makes a visit to Utah.

I also have eight more brothers and sisters who do a lot to enrich my life. Thanks to my sisters, brothers, sister-in-laws, and brother in laws Sandee, Clayton, Pam, Kelly, Mark, Lisa, Janet, Dave, Amy, Laurel, Carl, Vida, Dan, Val, and Jon for all they do for me. There are also 39 nieces and nephews and more than 75 great-nieces and nephews who occasionally make an appearance on the blog, including my nephew Jake  and my niece Kara, who are my cooking assistants on a regular basis.

My Life Before Blogging
In my previous life I had a business organizing catered houseboat trips at Utah’s Lake Powell.  That was a lot of trips to Lake Powell, but for my day job, I was an elementary school teacher for 30 years, and it’s always fun when former students find me through the blog. During my teaching career I served as President of the Davis Education Association, and was also a board member of the Utah Education Association and the National Education Association. I retired from teaching in 2009 to become a full-time food blogger.

Other Blogging Adventures
In addition to working on Kalyn’s Kitchen I also feature from-scratch slow cooker recipes from food bloggers all around the web for my other blog Slow Cooker or Pressure Cooker.

For years I was also writing about food at BlogHer.com, and even though I have now “retired” from that position, I’m still a big fan of the BlogHer/SheMedia organization and am proud of my association with them.

I’ve been lucky enough to speak about blogging at a few conferences. I was the moderator of a panel on The Art of Food Blogging at BlogHer Conference 2007 and participated in a panel about Food Blogging Best Practices at BlogHerFood 2009. I was also on a panel about Secrets of Successful Food Blogging at SXSW Interactive 2009, a panel about Food Blogging: Beyond the Basics at the IACP Conference in 2011, a panel on Building Blog Traffic Through Social Media at BlogHerFood 2012, and a panel on Pinterest at BlogHerFood 2015.

Kalyn’s Kitchen has received some nice mentions in print media and other places on the web, and I appreciate all the publications and sites who have featured my work (although for quite a few years now I haven’t been doing a good job at all of adding things to that page!)

Kalyn’s Kitchen Through the Years:
(These are the anniversary posts I’ve made each year on the birthday of my blog.)
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns One
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Two
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Three
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Four
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Five
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Six
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Seven
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Eight
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Nine
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Ten
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Eleven
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Twelve
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Thirteen
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns 14 (and Kalyn Examines her Bucket List)
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns 15 (and Three Questions for Readers)

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    212 Comments on “About Kalyn’s Kitchen (How I Lost 42 Pounds and Became a Food Blogger)”

  1. Kalyn, Congratulations on your weight loss success! Thanks for so many great recipes too! I can relate, I lost alot of weight after juicing fresh fruits & vegetables & it inspired me to start my own blog too…thanks again!

  2. Good luck with your new commitment to healthier eating!

  3. Kalyn! I found you on a website on a list called "100 Food Blogs to Inspire Your Healthy Eating." Your blog is definitely an inspiration – I've been eating unhealthy all my life, convinced that a healthy diet equated yucky, boring food. But your blog has convinced me otherwise, because all your food looks delicious! I can't wait to try out one of your recipes.

  4. I've been reading your blog for a few years now and just recently decided to try my hand at this. I just wanted to let you know that your site is only one of a handful that I visit on a regular basis. My favorite recipe from your site is the halibut with parmesan sour cream sauce. Best Wishes!

  5. Jay, so glad you are enjoying the recipes and learning to enjoy cooking.

  6. The wife and I are doing the South Beach and love it! I'm a full time student now since being laid off and have taken over all the house duties including all the cooking. I'm traditionally not someone found in the kitchen doing anything other than eating and am completely new to cooking. Your blog is a treasure! Thank you for providing such wonderful and easy to make recipes. You've gained a reader for life! I made black bean marinated chicken thighs tonight and they were a huge hit and OMG your Brussels with pecans and gorgonzolla. Sigh….

  7. I found your blog via Pintrest and I am so glad I did!! Your recipes looks wonderful and I can't wait to try them out! Thanks!!

  8. Hi Nancy,
    One reason I chose South Beach to manage my weight is because I didn't want to calculate points, carbs, calories, etc, so I'm afraid I don't know a program that does that. But I bet you could find one pretty easily if you google something like "calculate nutritional information." I'm guessing there are many options available, I just wouldn't know one to recommend.

  9. Happy New Year Kalyn. I discovered your blog in 2011. I always love your the look and sound of your recipes. I would love to have the nutrition information on many of them. Just wondering if you have a suggestion for what would be the easiest way for me to get that. Is there a software I could plug them into that would give me that?

    Thank you!!!

  10. Kalyn,

    I just wanted to let you know that I make at least one of your recipes EVERY week… if not more 🙂 And I love blogging about them!

    Thanks for doing what you do!


  11. Kay what a wonderful before and after story. This comment really made my day. (And I can't quite get the hang of Zumba, so my hat is off to you for that!) So glad the blog has been this helpful for you.

  12. Dear Kalyn,
    At the age of 51, and a dance teacher by profession, I had pretty much given up losing weight. Believe me, I tried….for 10 YEARS!!!! To most people, I didn't look that bad, I hid it well! I had lots of excuses, 5 kids (Including twins), thyroid disease, approaching menopause……I looked around me, and thought I still looked o.k. for a woman my age. The problem for me was, I felt lousy all the time. I was tired, and I felt old! BUT….something happened! I decided to give it one more try, and went on the South Beach diet. Your recipes were the ONLY thing that helped teach me what I needed to do, to stay on this diet. I can proudly say, I have lost 35 pounds, and my BMI went from 31 to 20!! I went from struggling through the 6 dance classes I taught each week, to currently teaching 20 classes per week, half of them Zumba! I feel like I am in my 20's and most think I am in my 30's!!! THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU for helping all of us people who don't know where to begin with this diet! A week doesn't go by where I don't show people, before pictures of me, and I always tell them to check out your webpage if they really want to know how I did it!

  13. Miranda, how fun to hear that. Still hanging in there (with quite a few times going back to phase one for a little tune-up!)

  14. I just found your website from an old Woman's World magazine of 2006. Crazy! So great to hear that you're still going strong on being healthy and posting great recipes :).

  15. Sam, I am sold on it as well! And truthfully I don't think it's that hard to follow it. Just get back on phase one if you get off track; I do that several times each year.

  16. I think the South Beach diet is the best. We've pretty much adapted it as our lifestyle.

  17. Stacey, you're welcome and good luck!

  18. Thank you for your wonderful website! My husband and I just started the south beach diet and after two weeks, it has changed our lives too. I love food and am happy to discover that we can still enjoy food.

  19. I am not really qualified to give that kind of advice. I recommend you read the books so you understand how the various phases work. Phase one is generally recommended for two weeks, at which time you start to add things back into your diet.

  20. hi! your blog is very inspiring!
    i need your advice. i need to lose 30 lbs at least and i want to know how long should i stay in phase 1? is there a formula like phase 1 for 2 weeks then 2 weeks for phase 2 then go back to phase 1 for 2 weeks?
    i'm just on day 3 of SBD phase 1 and as of end of day 2, i already lost 1.5 lbs!