The first potluck I can remember going to was in the large fellowship hall of the Presbyterian Church I attended as a kid. Though there was more food than there were people to eat it, I have such positive memories of coming together with community to share a meal.

Last year, my friend, fellow health coach and culinary nutrition expert, Katie Hussong, and I decided to start a local potluck group called Charm City Cooks. Our goal was to bring people together regularly to share nourishing and delicious meals and create a safe space to build community.

Our first potluck was centered around recipes in The Undiet Cookbook, written by our culinary nutrition instructor, Meghan Telpner.

We had so much fun, we decided to do it again, even though winter weather postponed our plans…twice! On a beautiful, cool and crisp, spring-like Friday evening, we came together to share recipes¬†from the blog, YumUniverse.


I love trying recipes from other bloggers and introducing you to those wonderful people as well, so you can expand your recipe bank and find new sources of cooking inspiration.

YumUniverse invites their readers to do this:

Discover the infinite possibilities for a plant-inspired, gluten-free lifestyle with veggie junkie, author and recipe developer, Heather Crosby

I’ve experienced so much vitality along with health and beauty benefits since¬†boosting my intake of plant-based foods about five years ago. I believe¬†the life in food gives us¬†life and that colorful, vibrant foods help to build vibrant bodies. That’s why I center most of what I eat around plant-based foods.

YumUniverse has hundreds of beautiful and tempting recipes on their site, so it was hard to choose what to make, but these are the recipes we picked for our potluck:


Each of us had a little of everything and commented how delicious it was.

As we sat around the table sharing stories, dreams, smiles and laughter, I reflected on how special it is to connect with food and people in a way that nourishes us on so many levels.

This is how we were meant to experience food to its fullest Рin community. 

As someone who hasn’t always felt like I “fit in,” being part of tribes like this one has been so healing for me. I love that I can “be me” and be surrounded by other women¬†who are brave enough to do the same.

We’re already planning the next gathering¬†and look forward to what¬†dish each person will be inspired to bring. If you’re looking for something fun¬†to do¬†with your friends or family and want to¬†try new recipes and build community,¬†plan your own cookbook potluck party!

YumUniverse Group

The Charm City Cooks crew after our YumUniverse meal!