Wow! The holidays are already coming quickly, and before we know it Thanksgiving will be here! Since the holidays are always about cooking good food in our house, I thought it was the perfect time to introduce you to one of my friends, Austin-based trained chef and fitness expert Erin Stewart. With an extensive background in both cooking and fitness, Erin Stewart knows what it takes to fuel your body for optimum performance, and, as a mother of two young children, she understands the importance of nourishing your whole self, to feel good, grounded, and strong.
I first met Erin through a mutual friend in 2021, and we have become fast friends. Whether bonding over our mutual love for the Hamptons, our respective time spent living in New York, being “outsiders” in Texas, running our own businesses here in Austin, being “boy moms,” and even our shared name, we have so much in common!
I couldn’t wait to interview Erin to learn more about her background and how she’s been able to combine her love for both food and fitness throughout her career, including her latest venture, Savor + Sweat, an app that brings her positive, insightful and creative passions of food and fitness into your home via on-demand fitness and cooking classes and recipes. Whether you have 10 minutes or a full hour to feel your best, there’s something for everyone on this app at an affordable price point (memberships start at $29.99/month)
And being the wonderful person that she is, Erin shared a FREE recipe with y’all for some Maple Thyme Pecans which are perfect for gifting or snacking this time of year! I know I’ll be making them for my kids’ teachers and neighbors.
Without further adieu, here is my conversation with Erin. I hope you enjoy getting to know her as much as I have!
- Where did you grow up and what did you want to be when you were older? I grew up in South Florida and I always knew that movement would be a big part of my life. I wanted to be a dancer when I was little.
- Where did you go to college and what did you do right after graduating? I went to college at Southern Methodist University, graduated with a BFA in Dance Performance with a minor in Advertising. I immediately moved to New York City to pursue a career in dance.
- Have you had any mentors in your life? I have always had someone that I looked up to in every phase of my life. My constant has always been my mother. I know that I get my work ethic and grit from her.
- Tell me about the genesis of your fitness and cooking app Savor & Sweat- what was your “aha” moment? Well, I've been teaching in studios since high school and throughout my New York City days so it's really what I know and have always done. I most recently owned a fitness brick and mortar company for 10 years and franchised the concept where I spent most of my energy teaching, creating and training fitness and cooking class concepts and building a brand. My aha moment really came during the pandemic when I realized that I could do everything that I loved - all of it - virtually, and from anywhere and could reach more people.
I had left my previous company in January of 2020, but continued to assist our studios to navigate the initial throws of lockdown but when everyone quickly pivoted to virtual platforms, I was a first adapter and business soared personally for me teaching fitness and cooking classes on my own. Savor + Sweat was formed during covid.
- You have such an interesting background of launching many different businesses across different industries. What is one lesson you’ve learned as an entrepreneur that gives you staying power? You have to put in the work. As long as you stay your course and believe in yourself, your vision will come alive.
- What is your ultimate goal for Savor & Sweat? Oh it's been interesting navigating the fitness and wellness space during the past few years. Now that high-quality instruction can be accessed anytime, anyplace and studios and gyms are open again, we now have the best of both worlds. The omni channel approach has staying power- but you have to do it well and we have to be able to offer it all. My goal for Savor + Sweat is to be able to reach and inspire a lot of people to move and cook often - find their way to feeling good every single day. I want to create a powerful community of women who can come together in person and online - at their convenience- whatever it takes to keep health and wellness goals attainable, achievable and fun.
- I am so excited that you recently moved your family to Austin and that we’ve gotten to know each other. What have you found most inspiring about living in your new city? Austin has a lot to offer - we spend so much more time outdoors and our boys love it. I think what I have found most exciting is the vibrancy of brands and creatives here. Everyone is eager to collaborate, grow and lift each other up. There is a little spark of New York energy in this Texas town that brings my love for both the big city and the south together.
- You always look so polished and put together during your in-person and online workouts…where do you like to shop for stylish workout gear? Oh wow, thank you! As a mom of two boys, polished is not the word I would use to describe myself these days :). But I do LOVE workout gear - putting on apparel that is functional and fashionable is important to inspire quality movement. I actually just launched a Shop page on my website where I curate easily shoppable links to all of my favorite things, from apparel to my pantry. This is the best place to shop for my looks, supplements, kitchen tools and more, and I update it constantly.
- You are such a present mom to your two adorable boys, Liam and Owen. What is one way you manage to have a balance between work and mom-life? This is always a struggle! I learned quickly as a parent that there really is no such thing as balance when it comes to work and home- I am constantly being pulled in every direction and no amount of planning can predict daily occurrences with our tiny humans. Once I threw out this expectation for myself, I looked at my workload differently. Time-blocking is my most useful tool to date. My calendar is filled to the minute everyday and I am constantly shifting things around. But by the end of the week, things get done.
- If you could have one “do-over” in life, what would it be and why? I wish I wasn't too quick to pause my food line in Houston once I moved to Austin. I miss having my meals in my personal fridge to grab each day and being able to share with others! Maybe someday I will bring it back.
- If you could only cook one dish every day of the week, what would it be? I can't live without my homemade ginger-lemon tea, and as far as a dish goes, my clean-out-the-fridge stir fries would be the way to go every day because depending on the ingredients that you have on hand, with the same cooking technique you can create many unique dishes.
- What is one tip you have for busy parents trying to put healthy meals on the table during the week when all kids want these days are processed snacks? Cook what they love, but your way. Get food on the table early and always include family-style veggies on the table, even if they don't eat it. The power of food introductions at their young ages will go a long way later for them and encourage adventurous eaters.
- What is next for Savor & Sweat? I am excited about an upcoming in-person retreat in Austin. Stay tuned for an announcement soon!
Erin has unlocked a FREE recipe for my readers. Here is the link to the video cooking class for her delicious Maple Thyme Roasted Pecans. And below are recipe cards if you don’t have time to watch the video.