She's Empowered Spotlight: Samah Dada, founder of Dada Eats
Meet our friend Samah Dada! She is the creator of Dada Eats, cooking show host, cookbook author and creative genius behind our latest limited-edition flavor, Date Caramel! Samah is such a gem and we couldn't be more excited to bring her dream nut butter to life.
Tell us a little about you!
Hi! I’m Samah Dada of my blog @dadaeats! I am a recipe developer, food blogger, and TV Host for my show #Cooking on the TODAY Show & Peacock TV. My first cookbook, DADA EATS LOVE TO COOK IT, came out this year. I also must confess that I am a nut butter and date fanatic. I live in New York and California!
What do you do for work? Tell us about your professional journey.
I started my Instagram in 2015 while interning for a summer at CNN in New York City. I was just absolutely taken with the food scene of New York and truthfully just needed somewhere to put all of the aggressive photos of food that were clogging up my camera roll. And so, @dadaeats was born. While pursuing my career in broadcast television production, I continued to work on DADA EATS as a hobby – throughout my job as an NBC Page and then as a production assistant at the TODAY Show.
Though my schedule at the TODAY Show was rigorous (that sweet, sweet, 3:30am alarm clock!) I managed to find time to cook when I came home from work every day. After a while, the producers took notice of my blog and started booking me on the show as a cooking guest. I’ll never be able to adequately describe how absolutely insane and dream-like the whole experience was. Since, I’ve done numerous segments on the TODAY Show and host my own show for them as well. I felt so privileged to have been able to write a cookbook this year as well, sharing all of my personal stories as well as my plant-based recipes in the pages of LOVE TO COOK IT!
How do you stay motivated?
You know what? Sometimes I don’t. And the way I stay motivated is by telling myself that sometimes it’s okay not to be. I definitely have the type of attitude where I’m a perfectionist and quite hard on myself – so by letting myself ebb and flow in the way I’m supposed to, it makes it easier. But to be honest, I am so in love with what I do for work that I feel so grateful every day to be doing what I’m doing. That makes it easy to stay motivated as well.
Do you have any advice for someone who is interested in starting a business?
It is so important to believe in what you do, and to love what you do. Otherwise, what’s the point? Be committed to finding something that is true to your passions and interests. Sometimes we forget that it’s our life, and our choices! You can do literally whatever you set your mind to. If you believe in it, others will too (but it’s MOST important that you believe in you, because how do you expect others to if you don’t?)
What are your favorite ways to #spreadgood in your community?
In general, my motto is to act with kindness in everything that I do. I see no reason to be unkind, no matter what the situation! I love to spread kindness through volunteering (you’ll find me in the God’s Love We Deliver kitchen in New York), or simply offering a helping hand to someone who needs it. The other day I bought my 95 year old neighbor some rice cakes because she loves them, and I’ve literally never seen anyone happier to see boxes of rice cakes in my entire life. Something that seems little to you, can make a huge difference in someone else’s life.
Who is one person who inspires you and why?
My mom! She is my #1 supporter in everything that I do. Without her advice, encouragement, and fielding of my 100000 texts a day, I don’t know where I’d be!
How do you work to stay centered and practice self-care in your busy day-to-day reality?
Walking! It is my daily meditative practice. It keeps me grounded and centered, while also getting me outdoors. Sometimes I’ll use my walks to call my friends (which also keeps me centered and uplifted), and other times I’ll just listen to some music or a podcast. I think I would have gone absolutely crazy in the past year were it not for my walking ritual.
What do you like to do for fun, when you aren't working?
What are some of your favorite recipes with Ground Up?
Any Ground Up Nut Butter + A spoon? Does that count?
But truly, Ground Up has been absolutely life changing. I can’t go a day without some Cinnamon Snickerdoodle stuffed into warm dates, or on toast with bananas. I recently made some Chickpea Cookie Dough with Ground Up Creamy, and that was pretty epic too. I’m Ground Up’s #1 fan, for real.