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Q&A with Chef Yamira

Q&A with Chef Yamira

Yamira Lee Johnson is the head chef and founder of Breaking Bread with Mira and a certified holistic life coach. Through a long standing partnership with Orange County Library System she has hosted several Cuisine Corner events. This month, join Chef Yamira in her own kitchen via Instagram Live for a unique cooking experience.

Books & Beyond: What inspired you to start Breaking Bread with Mira?

Chef Yamira: I was inspired to build Breaking Bread with Mira while working with community organizations that help underserved individuals, families and veterans enduring life challenges. My vision was to research, prepare and provide resources to help people overcome life challenges and achieve overall health.

What makes you passionate about providing education on eating healthier?

I love sharing content that promotes wellbeing. My passion is fueled by the thought of helping solve a problem that can open the door to make someone’s life better.

You are also a Holistic Life Coach. How does this impact the way you see the role of food in an overall healthy lifestyle?

Since I became a certified holistic life coach to learn how to turn my health and life around, I’m able to understand how challenging it can be to take necessary actions to thrive while adopting wholesome and healthier habits. I believe that as a holistic life coach, I’m able to help others find the breach between their reality and their health and wellness goals.

What is your favorite go to summer snack?

There are plenty of favorite summer snacks for me, the top ones include a lime and chia agua fresca and sea salt and honey roasted mixed nuts.

Any tips on how to avoid unhealthy snacking?

Anxiety, boredom and rushing through your day are all triggers that can lead to unhealthy snacking. In addition to not letting myself get so hungry I can’t think straight, here are some other steps I need to be intentional. These steps help to avoid falling for foods that might be pleasant to my palate, but not so good for my health and wellness goals and include:

  • Drink 8 ounces of water before having a snack.
  • Never go to the grocery store hungry.
  • Don’t bring unhealthy snacks in the house.
  • If you are having a treat while out and about, don’t bring leftovers home.
  • Choose wholesome, healthier options like dark chocolate, mixed nuts, marinated cherry tomatoes.
  • Meal prep your snacks once or twice a week, so they are ready when you get hungry.
  • Choose baked or air fried snacks over fried with trans fats.
  • Keep a checklist of your health and wellness goals, so tempting snacks are in check. I limit foods and snacks that might trigger inflammation. Reminders of the pain and discomfort endured, keeps me from giving into the temptation.


Wholesome Roasted Mixed Nuts 

This easy recipe from Chef Yamira promotes heart health, increases energy and is rich in antioxidants.

2 cups of mixed nuts (pecans, walnuts, hazelnuts, cashews, Brazil nuts, etc.) 
1 tsp honey
1 tsp lime juice
1 tsp chia seeds
sea salt and pepper

1. Mix all ingredients and set to dry in the oven at 250 degrees for 15 minutes.
2. Let cool and pack in snack bags or containers.