She's Empowered Spotlight: Samantha Binkley, Founder of Healthy on You
"This is cheesy, but my customers and followers keep me motivated. Seeing how my products have become staples in people’s homes and how my recipes inspire others to eat healthy is my fuel. I’ve watched many of my customers go from having never cooked to creating meals with gourmet flavors. It makes me smile every time because the products are doing what I intended, they’re empowering people to play with flavor and experience healthy food."
We are so excited to introduce you to our friend Sam Binkley, founder of Healthy on You, an organic spice blend company! 5 years ago, she combined her passions for flavorful foods and music, and her company was born. Not only are her spice blends delicious, they also have the most creative names inspired by her favorite songs.
Tell us a little about you!
Two things I love are flavorful foods and music! You’ll find me dancing around the kitchen, whipping up some new recipe for my family every night of the week. I combined these two passions 5 years ago and founded Healthy On You, an organic spice blend company.
What do you do for work? Tell us about your professional journey.
I blend spices and create delicious recipes that highlight the Healthy On You spice blends. Five years ago, I found myself an empty-nester when my daughter went off to college. If you know me, you know I do not do well being bored, so I set out to find my passion project.
Food and healthy cooking has always been a large component of my life so I became a certified health coach and began hosting cooking classes out of my kitchen. I’d teach people how to create delicious and nutritious meals with food from my garden, with the focal point of these classes being spice blends I’d make for our recipes. The goal was to cut the unhealthy fats and sauces, but maintain the flavor of favorite dishes. Soon, I had students reaching out to me every week for refills on the blends I’d given them in class. I quickly realized I had a product and from there, my spice blend company was born!
How do you stay motivated?
This is cheesy, but my customers and followers keep me motivated. Seeing how my products have become staples in people’s homes and how my recipes inspire others to eat healthy is my fuel. I’ve watched many of my customers go from having never cooked to creating meals with gourmet flavors. It makes me smile every time because the products are doing what I intended, they’re empowering people to play with flavor and experience healthy food.
Do you have any advice for someone who is interested in starting a business?
Owning your own business is HARD. It is 24/7 and you’re the one driving the ship. Everything when you’re getting started is a learning experience and being able to analyze and learn from the mistakes you make along the way is critical. But, it is one of the most rewarding experiences. I think back to the skills I’ve developed as a businesswoman over the past years and know if I hadn’t started my own business I wouldn’t have grown in the same way.
What are your favorite ways to #spreadgood in your community?
Right now I’m involved with a local organization, Encinitas4Equality (E4E), which is a community space and black collective in Encinitas, CA. In the San Diego area, .8% of the population is black and in Encinitas and surrounding areas, there are no black-owned storefronts. E4E provides black-owned businesses with a space to showcase and celebrate their businesses. My products are featured in the store and we recently collaborated on a donation-based virtual cooking class!
Who is one person who inspires you and why?
I don’t have just one person that inspires me. Working parents, who are passionate about keeping their families healthy and being healthy role models for their children, are the people who inspire me. When I began my cooking class, many of my students came to me with their goals of learning to cook nutritious meals for their loved ones. Seeing the dedication from them to learn a new skill for those they love is inspiring!
How do you work to stay centered and practice self-care in your busy day-to-day reality?
I have my daily rituals that keep me centered and I make time for no matter how busy I am. I always begin my day by making the bed with my husband and I always cook dinner and eat with my family at the end of the day. No matter how busy we all are, we always make the time to sit together and enjoy a meal. It’s my favorite part of the day, sitting down and having a thought-provoking conversation with my family.
What do you like to do for fun, when you aren't working?
Moving my body! Whenever I get the chance I like to exercise. Whether it’s a long walk with my husband or a fun spin workout, taking the time to move my body just puts me in a great mood.
What are some of your favorite recipes with Ground Up?
I have three go-to ways I eat Ground Up: drizzled on top of my smoothie bowls, in homemade granola (we always have containers of it onhand in the house) and just straight out of the jar as a snack :).