MAKERS Profile

Ella Mills

Cookery Author & Entrepreneur

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'Deliciously Ella' cookery author, and founder of The Mae Deli, Ella Mills, talks about when she was diagnosed with a rare illness and how food inspired her to start a blog which led her to become one of the most prominent women in British food.
Ella Mills is an English cookery author and entrepreneur whose debut book was the fastest‑selling debut cookbook in the U.K. Mills blogs about healthy eating. Her second book, "Deliciously Ella Every Day," was published in 2016.   Mills grew up in the U.K., and graduated from St. Andrews University in 2013. Prior to graduation, in 2011, she was diagnosed with a relatively rare illness called Postural Tachycardia Syndrome. The illness had a devastating effect on her life — both mentally and physically. Her autonomic nervous system struggled to function properly and as a result, she spent most of her time in bed. Struggling to get her head around the situation and taking a lot of medication that wasn't helping, Mills became incredibly unhappy. She began to educate herself on diet and lifestyle, and started cutting out processed foods from her diet. She took up a whole-foods, plant based diet. After a period of two years, she slowly began to manage her symptoms, and as a result of her new diet, she was able to come off her medication.   Mills recorded what she was eating and began experimenting in the kitchen in a bid to push herself to learn more. Her blog soon took off, and in February 2014, Mills was inspired to launch an app that went straight to No. 1. Following the success of the app, she released her first cookbook in January 2015, which became the fastest selling debut cookbook in the U.K., and has now been published in 16 languages around the world. Her second book, released in January 2016, also debuted at No. 1. Mills is slated to release her third cookbook in 2017.   In summer 2015, Mills and her husband, Matthew wanted to create a socially and environmentally responsible company that could start to change the conversation and perception around natural food. They started by opening a space, the MaE Deli, in December of 2015. Following a successful opening year, they opened another space near Oxford Street and one in Covent Garden.   At the same time, they began to work on their other project; energy balls — the most popular recipe from the blog, books, and the deli. They had a noticed a gap in the market for more companies who were focused solely on natural ingredients and a bit more honesty. They launched their energy balls into shops in August 2016 and are now focusing on the next line of products and working on some new flavor of energy balls.   Their company is growing quickly. In 2015, before the deli opened, Mills had a team of four. A year later, her and Matthew have a team of about fifty people and it’s still growing.