Television Personality, Cookbook Author, and Children’s Nutrition Advocate
There is no one better equipped to show America how to prepare healthful, home-cooked meals that taste like five star cuisine than Johnny Prep. Since the of age of six, he has been mentored by some of the greats in the world of gastronomy — from his mother, a first-generation immigrant who taught him traditional homemade Croatian-style cooking, to several notable certified master chefs, each of whom cultivated his classical training in the culinary arts and put him on the path to becoming an author, cooking show host, entrepreneur, and advocate for children’s health.
Integral to Prep’s style of cooking is his desire to reveal to the home cooking audience the secrets that most top chefs prefer to keep to themselves. As the producer and star of the popular ‘Five Star Cooking at Home” series, which aired on BCTV in 2010, Prep shared the culinary school and restaurant quality recipes and techniques that everyday cooks can use to create easy-to-make and delicious meals featuring locally sourced ingredients.
Prep is both a soup enthusiast and professional soup developer. He now hosts the on-demand show “Soup and Co.”, which also airs on BCTV. Prep has developed soup recipes for Zoup! Fresh Soup Company and currently serves as their national spokesperson. He has been a guest chef for WJBK Detroit’s morning show, and has been interviewed on the nationally syndicated “Better Show,” WGN Radio, KCAL (Los Angeles), KDVR (Denver), WDRB (Louisville), WJW (Cleveland), WXMI (Grand Rapids), WHBQ (Memphis), WOFL (Orlando), and WUSA (Washington, D.C.), and in The Detroit News and The Oakland Press.
As a graduate of the University of Michigan with a degree in engineering (he also played offensive guard on the Wolverine’s football team) and later automotive supplier executive, Prep understands the need for greater emphasis on science, technology, and math education in order for today’s students to succeed in the 21st century. That’s why he has turned his attention to sparking a movement in the local school system that promotes these real-life problem-solving and critical thinking skills through the lens of child nutrition.
In 2011, he started Quality for Kids (Q4K), which aims to provide a competitive learning advantage to educators and students by teaching the methods, science, and culture of quality. Through the non-profit, where he serves as executive director, Prep launched “Veggie Wars,” an innovative middle school curriculum that challenges students to think about the value of healthy eating choices. “Veggie Wars” received national news attention, and is now part of three Michigan school curriculums. In 2011, Prep was chosen to present Q4K at the US Innovative Educators forum sponsored by Microsoft. Quality for Kids aims ‘to make it popular for kids to eat healthy’ by engaging students in the development and marketing of healthy foods. Currently, Q4K is initiating food clubs at several schools in support of a new reality TV series.
In 2010, Prep published his first cookbook, The Five Star Entertaining Casual Cookbook, which highlights how easy it is to make restaurant quality food at home. He is now at work on two other books, The Magic of Cooking with Really Good Broth, which shares the fundamentals of making broth and its use in many of our favorite recipes, as well as a book on child nutrition in conjunction with Wayne State University’s Department of Nutrition and Food Science.
Prep lives in Bloomfield Hills, Detroit with his wife Sarah, and three kids, Jackson, Jesse, and Joey.