Growing up around expert and traditional cooks in Tijuana, Mexico, Marcela was raised to be passionate about food. She jumped straight into a culinary life by working her first job at her aunt’s cooking school in Baja, Mexico. She realized she too wanted to pursue this growing love for food full time and enrolled in the Los Angeles Culinary Institute, and later graduated from the Ritz Escoffier Cooking School in Paris as a classical French pastry chef.
Marcela went on to run a catering company and teach children about the culinary arts in Tijuana. She collected recipes and applied her knowledge and skills (of her family’s cooking traditions) to map out her dreams. Marcela eventually parlayed her classical training and ability to become a food editor at Bon Appétit magazine.
Marcela quickly realized the idea of authentic Mexican cooking wasn’t as accessible as it should be. Her family’s cuisine was masked by heavy liquid cheese and overflowing burritos. She decided to show the world there’s "no" yellow cheese in real Mexican cooking and that this culinary style can be done with major flavors and little fuss.
She hosted her own cooking show, Relatos con Sabor, on Discovery en Español channel and earned a spot as a contender on The Apprentice: Martha Stewart.
In August, 2009, Marcela was given the chance to showcase her family recipes when she released her first cookbook, FRESH MEXICO: 100 Simple Recipes for True Mexican Flavor (Clarkson Potter). She appeared on NBC’s Today Show and was featured in New York Daily News around its release. With the book, Marcela became an advocate for great Mexican food that delivers freshness and flavor without forcing home cooks to track down hard-to-find ingredients — or spend hours at the stove.
Marcela was on the fast track to chef stardom.
Soon after, she landed her dream job as host of her own Food Network show, Mexican Made Easy. The show debuted in early 2010 and films in San Diego where Marcela currently lives.
Marcela is a mother to a wonderful son, Fausto, who doubles as her sous chef at just 5 years old.