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Meal Prep Queen

Iowa City, Iowa

Matching Partner: N/A

Hello, my name is Gabrielle. I grew up in Chicago, and cooking has been my passion since I was a little girl. I became fascinated with cooking while spending summers at my grandparents house, helping my grandma tend to her massive garden each morning. Everything about cooking delighted me. I loved learning different recipes, and cooking techniques from my grandma. I was inspired to study culinary arts, but through the trials and tribulations that life throws at you sometimes, I did not get a chance to fulfill my culinary arts dreams.

Now I am a single mother of two, juggling two jobs at the moment to make my dreams a reality. After several years of considering cooking as a career, I took a leap and started my business from scratch, with no equipment and little resources. In the meantime, I have grown my business by carefully saving and re-investing my earnings, learning from other businesses in my area, and by making observations and learning from my own experiences.

I have written two cookbooks and have also developed my own signature sauce; which I have been promoting and selling locally to people in my community. Sales have been great, and the demand is there, but I don’t have enough supply on hand to fulfill all the orders. This is one of the reasons I am seeking out this loan. I am very proud to have had the opportunity to give back to my community. As I have become more experienced, I have taught over 50 cooking classes for kids, and young adults in the community. And, I have catered countless events for my community – free of charge. I am continually delighted to have had the opportunity to help and serve in my wonderful community.

Business Description

Meal Prep Queen recreates your favorite food with a local twist. Do you want to eat healthier but don’t like certain tastes associated with this category of eating? My unique cooking style merges healthy food that tastes great! Located in Iowa City has been a blessing, and the thriving agricultural resources help make our food fresh and healthy.

Meal Prep Queen always sources locally-grown produce whenever possible, and supports other local businesses. Currently, I cook for close friends and family and am gaining customers through word of mouth. I also deliver all the meals myself. I started this business in 2021 because cooking for others has always been my life passion.

What is the Purpose of This Loan?

With growing demand for my services, I am in need of capital to purchase inventory to fill this demand. I will also be using this loan to update my kitchen equipment and supplies. Some examples of items I will be purchasing include: a wheeled cart, knives and a knife bag, cooking utensils, food pan carriers and serving platters, a chafing burner, and extra sauce bottles. I look forward to growing my business and getting to a place where I can go full-time with this culinary business and not work two jobs.