WCL: Karyn Calabrese on WCL

Karyn Calabrese has been at the forefront of healthy eating for over 40 years and this Chicago native now has a Wellness Center and three popular restaurants here in the Chicago area: Karyn's Raw Bistro, Karyn's Cooked & Karyn's on Green. Today Karyn will talk about eating healthy and give us her take on classic comfort food.

FOR MORE ON KARYN: http://www.karynraw.com/


Karyn Calabrese is a successful entrepreneur and highly sought after holistic health counselor who runs a thriving vegan wellness company in Chicago.

A lifelong resident of Chicago, earlier in life this was an unlikely path for Karyn. Her diet consisted mostly of meat, sugar and fried foods and she suffered from low energy, constant illness and 'every allergy known to man.' All the women in Karyn's family were dying young and overweight and it seemed Karyn's fate would not be different. However, in the mid-70's, Karyn's life began to change when her mother was diagnosed with cancer. Karyn's mother sought alternative healing in addition to traditional treatments. Karyn began juicing with her mother and adopted a vegetarian diet. She felt almost immediate relief from the ailments that had plagued her. Although Karyn's mother succumbed to the cancer, for Karyn this was the beginning of a new journey.

Karyn transitioned from vegetarian to vegan in the late 70's. Soon after she discovered Dr. Ann Wigmore and Viktoras Kulvinskas, modern raw food pioneers, and learned about raw foods and detoxification which would become the pillars of her health. Fully embracing the raw foods lifestyle, Karyn started a small business in Evanston, Illinois growing sprouts and juicing wheatgrass in a greenhouse. In 1995, Karyn opened Karyn's Fresh Corner, only the second raw foods restaurant in the country where she taught classes and saw clients. She also opened a nearby holistic spa, Karyn's Inner Beauty Center. In October of 2002, she merged both locations into one 7500 square foot destination. Karyn developed a line of high quality food, products, supplements and even makeup that are available in the store and for shipping around the world.

In 2005 Karyn opened a new restaurant, Karyn's Cooked, for people looking for a bridge from a standard American diet to the more hard-core approach of raw foods.

Karyn's Cooked has an all vegan menu with a large selection of 'conscious comfort foods' including chili, ribs and bread pudding as well as a full bar. Due to the popularity of Karyn's Cooked, in January of 2010 Karyn opened her newest restaurant, Karyn's on Green. Karyn's on Green is a more upscale approach to vegan dining with reinterpreted versions of classic American cuisine and cocktails.

Karyn has created a thriving business out of teaching people to take care of their bodies using natural foods and detoxification. Karyn attracts endless media attention having been featured on the Oprah Winfrey Show, the Jenny Jones Show, and the Today Show in addition to countless other television programs, newspapers and magazines. Karyn was awarded the First Annual Raw and Living Foods Golden Branch Award in 2002 for introducing the idea of raw and living foods to the greatest number of people in the mainstream public. As big as her business has grown, Karyn still finds the most fulfillment in teaching her monthly free information sessions and bimonthly detox programs that expose hundreds of new people to the food and practices that have given her so much health and happiness. Karyn is a mother and grandmother and lives with her husband, Jerry, and their dog, Mitch, in Chicago.


2 zucchini, Olive Oil, Salt
Peel zucchini. Using a potato peeler or spiralizer, shave spaghetti like strands. In a bowl, sprinkle salt and oil over shaved zucchini to lightly coat. Gently toss. Pasta can be used right away but the longer it sits the softer and more 'cooked' like it will become.

3 plum tomatoes (cut in half)
1 red pepper (cut off ends, de-seed and quarter)
2 cloves garlic
one-cup cup soaked sundried tomatoes
1 tablespoon fresh basil
one-half teaspoon Himalayan salt
Put all ingredients in a blender and combine on a low speed. Increase speed and blend for about a minute until all ingredients are combined. For a thinner consistency, add soaking water from sundried tomatoes. Layer or toss with zucchini pasta, garnish with parsley or fresh herbs and serve.
Optional: add mushrooms, olives, other ingredients of choice?make it yours!

14 oz. of Apple juice & Rejuvelac (fermented wheatberry) mixture
1 Frozen Banana
2 Tablespoons Karyn's Green Meal Powder
1 Tablespoon Lecithin Granules
1 Tablespoon Flax Seed Oil
Blend liquids and frozen banana at a high speed until creamy. Add lecithin and blend. Add green meal powder and flax seed oil and blend at a low to medium speed until fully combined. Pour and enjoy!