When I was a child, I loved to eat—and loved to eat often. I still do. My mother was a caterer and taught me about the importance of high-quality ingredients and the art of good cooking . . . without a recipe in sight. Still, my favorite food was potato chips for quite a few years. My first culinary creation . . . bologna-potato chip canapés, of course! (I think I was barely 4 years old!) Thankfully, I entered adulthood with some healthful eating habits and amazing cooking and food lessons. I feel privileged to have learned so much about what “real food” is . . . and fortunate to realize how eating can and should be a pleasurable and important part of life.
Today, I love that I’m able to carry on the lessons my mother taught me, from how to pick the best grape leaves to make traditional Lebanese stuffed grape leaves to the secret to whipping up a batch of her finger-drop fudge. And after attending college at The Ohio State University (Go Buckeyes!) to become a registered dietitian nutritionist and after going to culinary school at Kendall College to become a chef, I have now married my passion for natural, plant-filled cooking with nutrition and culinary expertise to share with you my love of good cooking. It’s such a treat to be able to make a career out of something that I adore.
If you’re looking for me, I can often be found tinkering around in my kitchen in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. My official sous chef’s name is “Baby Duke!” That’s actually my kitty … who happens to have very fine taste. One of his favorite foods is organic baby kale–and yes, it must be organic or he won’t eat it! As for me, I try not to play favorites with my food. Actually, I find it nearly impossible to narrow down my favorites to just one. But, if you asked me if there are any foods I would never ever want to give up for the rest of my life, I’d secretly tell you avocados and chocolate-mint anything!
Chef and Nutritionist Jackie Newgent, RDN, CDN, sure has come a long way since her earliest childhood creation of bologna-potato chip canapés. She’s a New York City-based classically-trained chef, registered dietitian nutritionist, award-winning cookbook author, professional recipe developer, and media personality. She’s passionate about plant-based cuisine and the environment. And she’s a lifelong fan of flavorful food.
Jackie’s newest book, The Clean & Simple Diabetes Cookbook, hit bookshelves in early 2020! She’s the author of The All-Natural Diabetes Cookbook–2nd edition, (American Diabetes Association, October 2015); it was awarded a Silver Nautilus Book Award 2015! The first edition of the book was also award-winning, receiving the “Best Health and Nutrition Book in the World” by Gourmand World Cookbook Awards 2007. Her book, The With or Without Meat Cookbook (American Diabetes Association, 2014), is the first ever collection of delicious, plant-forward, flexitarian recipes perfect for diabetes, prediabetes, or heart health — plus it won the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards 2014 for “Best Health and Nutrition Book–Institutions (USA).” Additionally, Jackie is author of the media-acclaimed Big Green Cookbook (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2009) and 1,000 Low-Calorie Recipes (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2012).
Be on the lookout, Jackie can be spotted as a culinary nutrition expert on television. Past appearances have included The Dr. Oz Show, ABC’s Good Morning America and World News Now, NBC’s Later Today and Dateline, Food Network’s Follow that Food, and The Daily Buzz. She has been a repeat guest on Planet Green’s Emeril Green and Martha Stewart Living Sirius Satellite Radio’s Whole Living. Additionally, Jackie can be seen as host of healthy cooking videos, including videos on the new Food Network Kitchen App.
Jackie’s food articles, menus, and recipe features have been regularly seen in national online and print publications, including Livestrong.com and Rachael Ray In Season. In addition to her own recipe blog, she is an official Meatless Monday blogger and member of The Daily Meal’s Culinary Content Network. As a culinary specialist, Jackie is frequently quoted in major national print and online media, including SELF, USA Today, and ABCNews.com. Plus, she has been a columnist for top magazines, including Fitness’ “Healthy in a Hurry,” Woman’s World’s “Diet Club,” and Glamour’s “Eat More”.
Jackie is a chef instructor with the recreational division of the Institute of Culinary Education in New York City where she has been teaching hands-on cooking classes for years. Her popular courses include Superfoods, Cooking for Fitness, and Luscious & Lean Vegetarian. Jackie collaborates on popular consumer books as a highly-experienced and versatile recipe developer and tester. She has worked as a freelance recipe developer at Food Network. Plus, Jackie is a private plant-based cooking instructor.
She’s often invited to speak and provide culinary demonstrations at consumer events and professional meetings, including the International Association of Culinary Professional’s Annual International Conference, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’ Food & Nutrition Conference & Expo, Go Green Expo, and Kids Food Festival. As a food media spokesperson, Jackie can be seen throughout the country via satellite media tours. Some of her clients have included the Mushroom Council, California Tree Fruit Agreement, Seeds of Change, Paramount Farms, Beyond Meat, German Agricultural Marketing Board, and Scanpan. Jackie is a former national media spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
For nearly a decade, Jackie was a consultant for “Healthy Children Healthy Futures” a national after-school nutrition and fitness program targeted to city kids and parents. For the program, she wrote A Parent’s Guide to Healthy Eating and Physical Activity–a 100-page, full color guide for parents based on the “8 Habits of Healthy Kids.” She teamed up with Let’s Move Salad Bars to Schools, a comprehensive grassroots public health effort to mobilize and engage stakeholders at the local, state and national level to support salad bars in schools. Jackie is still quite involved as an advocate of feeding well — she’s the nutrition advisor for Lunch Unpacked.
Jackie received her B.S. in Allied Health Professions from The Ohio State University and Certificate in Professional Cooking from Kendall College. Her favorite hobbies include hiking, biking, traveling, listening to live indie music, attending sporting events, gallery hopping, hosting parties, exploring New York for the most intriguing cocktails and tastiest hidden food finds, and, of course, experimenting with veggie-filled recipes in her Brooklyn kitchen. Her mantra … “Go for great taste. Aim for plant-based. Try not to waste.” Follow her on Instagram: @jackienewgent.
Jackie is currently a spokesperson for KIND Snacks and National Mango Board.