As the granddaughter of a professional pastry chef, Anna’s had a passion for baking for as long as she could remember. At age 10, her younger brother was diagnosed with many chronic illnesses and allergies, so Anna began experimenting with recipes to create treats he could safely eat and enjoy. She fell in love with serving others and bringing joy through food, which she now does daily at her allergy-friendly shop, To Your Health Bakery, a popular destination in Winston-Salem, NC. Though this hard-working, self-taught entrepreneur specializes in in gluten free, vegan, keto and paleo products, she adapts her recipes to please any palate, especially when she donates her time to produce thousands of cookies for various charities.
A self-proclaimed Hallmark Channel fanatic, Anna also celebrates “Christmas In July” at To Your Health Bakery, allowing her to equally embrace her eternal Christmas spirit, her talent for baking and inner Hallmark fan girl Follow Anna on Instagram.
Q&A with Anna
When did you start baking, and why?
When I was eight year old, my little brother was born with a lot of food allergies. He was my whole world and so I started spending a lot of time in the kitchen to try and make special treats for him.
What are the specialty ingredients you can’t live without?
Oh my goodness. So many. But high on the list are cardamom, lemons, and love. Lots of love.
What’s your signature dish?
If I'm cooking, it's definitely a huge turkey with all the fixings! If I'm baking, probably my praline pumpkin pie!
Who do you love to bake for?
I love to bake for truly anyone, but especially my family and friends. Nothing brings me more satisfaction than feeding others!
What does holiday baking mean to you?
Holiday baking extends way beyond food. It's about joy and family time and memories...board game breaks and spontaneous caroling and giving back to the community. It really gets me in the holiday spirit!
What’s your favorite holiday baking memory?
When I was 5 years old, I begged my whole family to make a recipe included in my favorite "Pooh Bear edition" Candyland boardgame. My grandfather visited and quickly caved to making the truffles with me. I was too small to reach the counter so he sat me on top of it and let me help dip them in the chocolate and make a huge, delicious mess. It was our first and last time baking together and I'll always cherish it.