Local Chef Shayla White: Food TV Star and Owner of Prepping 2 Live in Texarkana, AR

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Shayla’s Personal Images from Master Chef and the Katie Couric Show
Nestled behind the Wells Fargo on Arkansas Blvd, is a store, Prepping 2 Live, run by Texarkana’s very own Chef: Shayla White. White, has competed throughout the years on several Network Television Cooking Shows including: Minute to Win It, Let’s Ask America, Family Food Fight, Katie Couric Show, and Master Chef Season 8. “Every show I applied for, I was selected to compete on,” said Shayla White, Owner and Chef of Prepping 2 Live. She won Let’s Ask America, was the second runner up on Home Chef Showdown, and was among the top four in the nation on Family Food Fight. Although she has competed on several national shows, her heart lies here in the Texarkana Area serving her community with delicious, nutritious, and down-home cooking.

While White loves to compete, she also runs local Prepping 2 Live, located in Texarkana, Arkansas, where she caters to the needs of everyone in our community. “I learned how to cook on the tail-ends of my grandmother and mothers skirts in the kitchen growing up. The love I have for cooking has never felt like a job. It has always been a passion of mine. In college at Henderson State, I would braid hair and sell plates of food out of my dorm room to anyone that wanted them. I was always a go-getter and I continue to be so,” said White. “When you find your passion, you never work a day in your life,” said Shayla. There are two sides of the business Prepping 2 Live. First is the meal prepping aspect to Prepping 2 Live. Clients can place meal-prep orders every week before Friday, where they choose from a menu of items that are based on specific dietary needs. Secondly, customers can also come by Monday- Wednesday and receive Lunch Specials prepared by White in what she named Shayla’s Kitchen.

Shayla’s Kitchen Open Monday- Wednesday, where everyday is a new special

Shayla White’s lunch specials have become well-known around town for those who enjoy down-home comfort foods. “I do my lunch specials Monday-Wednesday, 10:30a.m.-3p.m. and I take off Thursday and Friday to shop for supplies and take some down time. Typically, on Saturday thru Sunday, I work for about 24 hours here at the shop preparing for my clients meal preps. I typically provide over 500 individual meals a week for my clients and I do it all by myself. I cook with love and I want it to be done just right,” said White. On Monday- Wednesday she also prepares her lunch specials on her own. “Sometimes my clients who come in wanting our specials will have to wait a few minutes, but that’s it.  I want to make sure that whatever I am serving them, is coming out of my kitchen hot and fresh. I am a one woman band, and I try to make sure I cater to everyone who visits in a timely manner,” said White.

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White has been in business for over 21 years. Her support from the community has been “phenomenal,” said White, and the support from her husband of 23 years has been “incredible,” she says. “However, my partner in this business is God. I am nothing without him. Sometimes people tend to shy away from that, but he is my partner in everything that I do for this business. I believe it’s because of that partnership that we were able to survive during COVID. We never had to take any business loans. The work was straight blood, sweat and tears. We ran on straight savings. The only thing I had to fall back on during that time was God, and he came through for me, and for this business,” said White. “We are run by family, for family. I was doing this at home until my husband pushed me to look for somewhere to run my business, and now look where we are!,” said White.

Shayla White’s Meal Prep

Prepping 2 Live offers healthy food options for those who are looking to find meal prepping around town that are delicious, healthy and affordable. “My meal preps are healthy. I try to cater to everyone’s special dietary needs. But some of the people we cater for are those that have diabetes, or those who have high cholesterol. I make sure that if someone orders three meals a day they add up to only 1800 calories. Prices are as follows: 5 for $30, 10 for $60, or 15 for $80. That’s only $6 per meal. Monday-Wednesday we reopen as Shayla’s Kitchen! I try to do something fun and yummy each day. Tuesday is always going to be Taco Tuesday, but most other days, I am doing loaded sweet potatoes, or turkey legs and dressing. Sometimes I do a triple threat because my community of clients is just too great. The triple threat is done all in one day so clients can choose between: baked chicken and dressing with greens, yams and macaroni and cheese and pinto beans, then I did chicken spaghetti with green beans and carrots, and the last meal was loaded beef spaghetti with green beans,” said White. “It’s equal parts exhausting, as it is rewarding. I love my clients and I am forever grateful that I get to do what I love each and every day,” said White.

Prepping 2 Live is located off Jefferson Avenue, behind the Wells Fargo on Arkansas Blvd. The address is 4002 Jefferson Ave, Suite A. Shayla is open Monday-Wednesday 10:30a.m.-3:00p.m. For more information regarding meal prepping and menus you can connect with Shayla on her public Facebook Group for Prepping 2 Live.

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