Keena of Dine & Flash on Cannabis Cooking, Content Creation, and Beyond!
Keena is a queen of creating delicious cannabis-infused treats for her brand Dine and Flash! When she is not in the kitchen testing new goodies, she is creating content, educating others, and generally making the world a better place!
We are focusing on self-love and self-care this February and Keena put together this indulgent and delicious go-to for a cozy movie night at home. Whether it is a date or just some solo fun time, this sweet infused treat will have you feeling blissed out and cozy in no time!
“One of my favorite comfort foods to indulge in is caramel popcorn (or most things with salted caramel)! It makes me think of Garrett’s at home in Chicago, and the warm aroma of homemade caramel is intoxicating in its own right. I love sitting under a cozy blanket, with a Netflix binge and this amazingly delicious cannabis caramel popcorn.”
Keena was introduced to her love of cooking by her mom, “My mom. She almost exclusively cooked from scratch and had the most creative baking ideas...way before Pinterest was a thing!”
Keena’s passion for cooking led her to open a commercial bakery. It was there that she saw that there was a real demand for canna-infused goods. This business-savvy chef wanted to learn more about this opportunity right away. “...after hearing that there were people who preferred edibles over smokeables, for whatever reason, I began studying cannabis, the endocannabinoid system, and taught myself the different methods of infusion. Once I learned, I converted my old bakery recipes to edibles, and that’s how my cookbook was born in 2016.”
Her food is a reflection of her spirit, comforting and warm! “The common thread in my cooking is probably comfort food; I like food that makes you feel warm and loved.”
When it comes to people trying to start working with cannabis in the kitchen, Keena has the following advice, “Learn about the basics of infusion (Fat, alcohol, etc) and then experiment with your favorite recipes.”
She put out her first cookbook Cannabis Creations: Beyond the Brownie in 2016, a delicious read where you can find something for every sweet tooth! “ I self-published my first book, and it was A LOT of work writing, photographing, designing and distributing the book. I’m happy I did it though.” She is working on publishing her second cookbook this year, and we can’t wait!.
Keena showcases her work on the screen In addition to paper, with her YouTube series The Antidote. We can’t stop watching this channel! The subjects range from cannabis cooking, health-related topics, business deep dives, and beyond! She is a one-woman powerhouse and we love it!
The show name resonated with her because of its healing nature, “Well, the word means medicine given to counteract a particular ailment...cannabis is definitely that, and food is medicine as well.”
The show was a way to share with people outside of her live events. “I like to teach people how to medicate themselves, so YouTube just offered me the ability to share different recipes and methods of infusion to people who could not attend a live demo class or dinner party with me.”
When it comes to dream collabs Rachel Ray we’re looking at you! “She’s very fun and relatable, so I think we’d get along well.
Despite the educational nature of her channel, Keena faces stigma as a canna-business owner when it comes to social media platforms. “Cannabis content, by and large, is against YT’s community guidelines, so I cannot monetize my content and I am often shadow-banned on social media outlets making it more difficult for the content to be circulated. After putting out content consistently over the past 2-3 years, I should have many more subscribers.”
This is one of the reasons it is so vital to continue to work towards breaking stigmas, improving cannabis policy, normalizing, and working towards positive change.
Keena was not introduced to cannabis until adulthood. “Honestly, my first introduction to cannabis was by the adults in my family smoking in private assuming we, the kids, had no idea they were doing something they didn’t want us to know about, lol”
While she did have stigma through cannabis information as a child, like so many of us, her thoughts have made a complete 180. “As a child of D.A.R.E., McGruff the Crime Dog, and ‘This is Your Brain on Drugs’ era, I had a very negative view on anything called a ‘drug’, but after immersing myself in the practice of herbal medicine, I sought to learn more about this villainized plant.”
Similar to ourselves, with day jobs outside of the canna-sector, Keena has seen stigma when it comes to how corporations view consumption. “I am traditionally an Accountant and had to keep the two worlds separate because there are very few corporations that view the plant as I do. Additionally, I am a Master Herbalist, and most in my community keep very quiet about cannabis like it isn’t a therapeutic herb as well. I seek to destigmatize the plant’s use in many areas of life.”
Keena has found personal benefits with both CBD and THC products. “Daily CBD has been great for my arthritis. THC preparations have been great for my endometriosis and chronic migraine.”
She thinks that there needs to be a shift to the new when it comes to cannabis stigma. “I think people immediately buy-in to the old narratives about cannabis and assume only those referred to as ‘stoners’ should be using it. It’s an unfortunate reality for this giving plant that was created, in my opinion, to bring balance and health to us.”
Keena sticks exclusively to edibles and has never smoked in her life. When it comes to her favorite infused goodies for self-care comfort she goes to ice cream or chocolate lava cake. (Both of which you can find in her cookbook!)
For readers who are interested in learning more about a cannabis culinary career check out Keena’s video here:
She says there is no time like the present if you are interested in starting a career in cannabis cooking, “Just do it! There are so many outlets to share your craft. Be consistent and provide value.”
When it comes to the future of the plant Keena is excited about normalization and pathways to wealth for communities of color, “I’m excited to see the plant more socially accepted and offering people the power to find solutions to their issues. I’m also excited about it being a way of creating new wealth for people of color.”
She is also inspired by the clients and patients, “People whose lives have been changed and healed inspire me to keep going.” We can’t think of a better motivator!
When Keena is not whipping up delicious comfort food, writing, or creating content, you can find her making moves in another area she is passionate about cannabis education. “I believe the real freedom in healing is knowing how to do it for yourself, so I find it empowering to teach people how to work with this amazing plant.”
She is all about healing through nature, and is making that accessible through Sovereign Harvest! “Through Sovereign Harvest, I offer herbal medicine preparations and consultations for custom medicines.”
She is looking forward to technical bounds when it comes to the cannabis culinary sector. “I’m looking forward to more tech in cannabis making cannabis edibles more attractive to people, like nano-emulsifiers for example that make cannabis water-soluble and the wait for onset much shorter.”
As someone who has a packed schedule, we wanted to know how she balanced consumption and productivity. “I use many herbs in my daily life, and if I’m using cannabis, I tend toward Sativa-dominant strains for productivity and indicas for calm. I also microdose, so it’s more like a daily multivitamin instead of only ‘getting high’.”
We are focused on self-love this February, and when it comes to her self-care routine, she likes to take a pause. “I call them sabbaticals… I spend a few days alone, preferably on the ocean to get back to me. Sometimes cannabis is involved, sometimes not.”
Outside of that, she incorporates CBD into her daily routine. “I take CBD daily in my smoothie and THC products as needed for pain or anxiety.”
We love Keena’s entrepreneurial spirit! She is a multifaceted business baddie who is making waves and breaking stigma on a daily basis! She is educating others and helping provide pathways to accessibility and education. We have no idea how she is able to do all of this while finding time to be an amazing wife and mother, but somehow she is doing it and making it look effortless.
Keep an eye out for Keena’s new book and her new patent-pending cannabis pasta online! To learn more about Kenna and Dine and Flash, follow dine_and_flash, soveriegnharvest, and myantidotetv on Instagram!