BOV Contributor: Joanne Molinaro


Meet Joanne | The Korean Vegan

Joanne has been writing since she was in junior high and her writing appears in the following publications: Side B Magazine, Cha: An Asian Literary Journal, and The Mashup Americans.  Her recipes have been featured in Thrive Magazine and in 2017, she appeared on the hit Food Network show “Cooks vs. Cons” as the only female and vegan contestant.  She has also given cooking demonstrations, participated in fundraising events for North Korean refugees, and was the keynote guest speaker for the Korean Women’s International Network 2018 Conference. She is currently working on her debut cookbook + memoir, The Korean Vegan, slated to be published in 2020.

Joanne adopted a plant-based diet in January 2016 and began The Korean Vegan as a passion project later that year.  Since then, her recipes have been featured in Thrive Magazine and in 2017, she appeared on the hit Food Network show “Cooks vs. Cons” as the only female and vegan contestant.  She has also given cooking demonstrations, participated in fundraising events for North Korean refugees, and been invited to be the keynote guest speaker for the Korean Women’s International Network 2018 Conference.

Joanne is also an avid runner and self-described “fitness freak.”  She ran her first marathon in 2017 and plans on running two more in 2018.

Joanne is the daughter of two Korean immigrants. Her parents both escaped the clutches of North Korea when they were infants and immigrated to the United States when they were in their 20s.  They raised Joanne to study hard, avoid cigarettes, and get a good job. Throughout much of her childhood, Joanne lived with one of her grandmothers, who taught her how to speak (Joanne’s first language was Korean), tie her shoes, and climb the crabapple tree in their front yard.

My 5 Favorite Vegan Ingredients

Salt, Gochugaru (Korean Pepper Powder), Tofu, Broccoli, Gold Potato.

My Life Motto

“I’ll have a side of fries with that.”

Currently working on…

I’m finishing my debut foodoir (cookbook + memoir), chronicling my family’s journey from North Korea, as well as veganized recipes of my favorite Korean dishes. I am also working on coordinating meetups and popups throughout the US, while taping tKV episodes for IGTV.  During the day time, I provide legal advice to lots of companies, including vegan activists and entrepreneurs.

Connect with me

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