By: Lisa Bicknell
Dry Branch resident Kristen Samples Stepp has always had a “huge love for cooking.” When everyone else her age was watching movies and sitcoms, she was watching the Food Network and cooking tutorials.
In 2016, she tried her own hand at making a tutorial and posted a YouTube video with instructions for making chicken bacon ranch pasta.
However, she didn’t post another video until January 2018. That’s when she made a New Year’s resolution to seriously pursue making a name for herself—and some income—with her own YouTube channel.
The decision came after her husband Josh Stepp, a trucker, had recently switched jobs. The time he had available for helping with the kids was shortened, and both her parents were working, so Kristen left her job at the Carhartt sewing factory to be at home with her young children.
Fast forward a few years, and 27 year-old Kristen has just reached a major milestone as a YouTuber. She now has 100,000 subscribers.
Her success comes as a bit of surprise to herself. “I always hoped to be able to do well on YouTube,” said Kristen, “but I didn’t really think I could.”
Still, that didn’t stop her from trying.
She focuses mainly on creating two types of videos, one being her popular “What’s for Dinner” series, where she creates a video collage of what she has prepared to feed her family every night of the week.
She also does a lunch box ideas series and includes a video collage of what she puts in her husband’s lunchbox each workday. She includes simple recipes in her videos and provides lots of tips about grocery products.
A few ads are scattered throughout the videos, usually three or four, and she gets paid according to how many times each video is viewed.
Her most popular video is a lunchbox video, which has had 1.3 million views.
Kristen thinks people like her videos because they are “relatable,” not too overly produced, and because she uses ordinary ingredients, nothing very fancy or exotic.
Every now and then she’ll post videos of what they’ve eaten in restaurants, or she will do a video of her “grocery haul.”
She has followers from all over the world, and many of them leave comments. She tries to respond to as many as she can, saying that it is fun to interact and to show her appreciation to people for watching.
Kristen is the daughter of Benny and Ruth Samples. Her husband Josh is the son of Charles and Jane Andrews.
Kristen and Josh began dating 11 years ago and married in 2013. They have two young children, Rylee and Boston.
On the weekends, the family enjoys taking rides in their RZR ATV.
To keep up with Kristen, follow her on Instagram, or subscribe to her YouTube or TicTok videos. To find her channel, simply go to YouTube and search Kristen Stepp.