How Yvette Earns Six-Figures By Sharing Authentic Mexican Recipes

How Yvette earns six figures by sharing authentic mexican recipes

Although there are many food and recipe blogs, Yvette Marquez-Sharpnack’s Muy Bueno stands out because of her passion for sharing Mexican culture and heritage through her amazing recipes. In this interview, Yvette shares how she grew her blog from a hobby to a successful six-figure business.

👇 Key Takeaways

  • Yvette started her blog as a hobby after other people wanted her recipes
  • She had a full-time job and family responsibilities at the time, and had to work on the blog late at night
  • After getting laid off from her job, Yvette used freelance gigs to earn money while growing the the blog
  • Writing for KitchenAid and Betty Crocker helpe Yvette to grow her brand.


Business Name: Muy Bueno
Website URL:
Founders: Yvette Marquez-Sharpnack
Business Location: Online / USA
Year Started: 2010
Number of Employees/Contractors/Freelancers: 12

How much revenue and profit does the business generate?

The Muy Bueno brand generates annual revenue in the six-figure range.

Tell us about yourself and your business.

I’m Yvette Marquez-Sharpnack, the founder and owner of I started Muy Bueno in 2010 as an online journal to document my family’s recipes, preserve my Mexican culture, and celebrate my heritage.

I’m a second-generation Mexican-American, born and raised in El Paso, Texas. I currently live in the beautiful state of Colorado with my husband and two children. I am the author of three books: Muy Bueno, Latin Twist, and Muy Bueno Fiestas

My goal is to be a resource for those eager to explore Mexican cuisine and culture through homestyle Mexican recipes and comfort foods. 

Photo by Jenna Sparks, courtesy of Yvette Marquez-Sharpnack

How does Muy Bueno make money?

Ad revenue through Mediavine is my primary source, followed by brand partnerships such as brand ambassadorship, social media influencer collaborations, spokesperson roles, and on-camera hosting.

Additionally, I generate income through affiliate partnerships with Amazon and LTK. And, I monetize my content via platforms like YouTube, Facebook/Meta, among others. I also earn royalties from my three cookbooks.

What was your inspiration for starting the business?

One day we’re all sitting down for dinner, and out of the blue, my 8-year-old daughter Maya says, “Hey, Mom, are you gonna write down all these recipes for me? You know, for when I’m off to college?” Totally caught me off guard, but it got me thinking about how we could keep these recipes alive for her and future generations.

So, I turned to my mom and said, “Mom, let’s write a cookbook!” I started sharing photos of dishes on Facebook, and a friend suggested I start a blog. I have to admit, I was clueless about what a blog even was. This was back in 2010 when blogs were still pretty new to me. As a full-time graphic designer at the time, I figured, “I can design a pretty logo and website and start a blog.” And that’s pretty much how the whole thing got started.

I named the blog and my first cookbook Muy Bueno in honor of my grandma, who has been my greatest inspiration. She always welcomed family and friends to her table with the same words: “Siéntate a comer, está muy bueno” (Sit down and eat, it’s delicious).

Muy Bueno book cover

How and when did you launch the business?

The business officially launched in the summer of 2010 as a means of preserving our family recipes. I co-authored the Muy Bueno cookbook with my mother and sister in 2012. It all started with the simple idea of sharing our cherished family recipes with others, and before I knew it, the cookbook was professionally published by a publisher in New York and the blog blossomed into a full-fledged venture.

How is the business funded? 

When I started the blog, I had no inkling it would become a business. It was purely a hobby, a passion project—an avenue to preserve my family’s Mexican recipes and a platform where I could tell stories and reminisce about the special memories of my childhood.

How did you find your first few clients or customers?

Fortunately, clients started approaching me. My first client was, a Hispanic cookware line. They asked me to test some of their products, like tamal steamers, and develop recipes using their other cookware.

Then came Avocados from Mexico, who wanted me to create on-camera YouTube videos. I had zero experience with video at the time, so I pretty much faked it till I made it.

Another early client was California Strawberries. They invited me to California to explore strawberry fields, hear farmers’ stories, be a brand ambassador, and develop recipes featuring strawberries.

What was your first year in business like?

I didn’t start monetizing the blog until a couple of years later. The first income with the Muy Bueno brand came in the form of an advance for the first cookbook, followed by brand partnerships a few months later.

I was pouring my heart and soul into the blog, often working into the early hours of the morning out of sheer excitement. Balancing a full-time job, being a mom, and a wife meant that after work, I’d transition into those roles, and once the kids were asleep, I’d dive into writing for the blog until 2 am.

Then, in the summer of 2012, I was unexpectedly laid off from my full-time job. It was a scary moment—I was the one carrying the benefits, and a steady paycheck was suddenly gone.

I remember persuading my husband to give me three months to build my business. I knew I could freelance as a graphic designer on the side while working on my business, which is exactly what I did. I took on logo design projects and even worked on designing another author’s cookbook.

What strategies did you use to grow the business?

I didn’t have a set “strategy” to grow the business—it was all about trial and error. Drawing on my background as a graphic designer, I designed a media kit and started pitching myself to magazines as a contributing writer. I also took on roles as a photo stylist. Eventually, I became a contributor to KitchenAid and Betty Crocker, which played a significant role in building my brand.

Muy Bueno Fiestas Book Cover

What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome?

I faced numerous challenges along the way. One of the biggest hurdles was the uncertainty of not knowing where my next paycheck would come from. On top of that, I had to dive headfirst into various roles, from becoming a writer and photographer to mastering the art of photo styling, public relations, and negotiation.

Additionally, I had to navigate the world of on-camera presence and learn the ins and outs of blogging, publishing, and social media. It was a steep learning curve, but one I embraced wholeheartedly.

What have been the most significant keys to your business’ success?

Passion has been the cornerstone of my business’s success. My deep love for my culture, sharing family recipes, and creating new ones has been the driving force behind everything. Without this profound connection and dedication, I wouldn’t still be on this journey.

Tell us about your team.

My first hire was a local videographer, Chris Orwat (Pure Cinematography), who continues to collaborate with me on YouTube videos.

Over time, while sharing recipes on my blog, I realized that managing photography and staying updated on the latest camera tech wasn’t where my passion lay. I much prefer being in the kitchen rather than behind the camera lens. So, I started working with various photographers until I found the perfect fit. For over six years now, I’ve been fortunate to work with Jenna Sparks, who captures all the images on my blog and photographed my latest cookbook, “Muy Bueno Fiestas.” She’s got an incredible creative eye and really knows how to make all my dishes pop.

I have a couple of local assistants who lend a hand with tasks like washing dishes or assisting with food styling as needed. To efficiently manage my workload, I rely on virtual assistants who handle tasks such as writing and managing some of my social media channels.

For financial and legal matters, I have a CPA and an attorney who diligently review contracts. To streamline brand partnerships, I collaborate closely with Johanna Voss, my business manager. She’s a total negotiating BOSS! Handling all my clients, she coordinates the scope of work and negotiates like a pro.

And with the release of “Muy Bueno Fiestas,” I teamed up with Sally Ekus, literary agent, and Andrea Burnett, publicist, to ensure its success.

What was the turning point when you knew your business was successful?

The Hispanic community is not only substantial but also influential, and it’s the fastest-growing demographic in the U.S. Recognizing that brands were eager to collaborate and connect with my audience was a pivotal moment that made me realize I had a viable business.

What separates your business from your competitors?

In today’s digital age, it’s true that recipes are just a click away. With a quick Google search, readers can access countless options that may seem appetizing. However, what sets my approach apart is authenticity. As a Latina, I’m committed to offering genuine Mexican recipes, ensuring that when readers search for a Mexican dish, they’re met with a truly authentic experience crafted by someone deeply connected to the culture.

While there may be an abundance of bloggers and “Mexican recipes” online, many of these are heavily Americanized versions. My aim is to go beyond just providing recipes. I want to educate and enlighten my audience about Mexican ingredients, demonstrating their accessibility and highlighting their health benefits. Through sharing personal stories and experiences, I hope to offer a real connection to my heritage.

Ultimately, my goal is for my recipes to serve as a bridge, allowing people to not only enjoy delicious meals but also to gain a deeper understanding of true Mexican cuisine. By showcasing traditional dishes and explaining their cultural significance, I strive to foster appreciation and respect for this rich culinary tradition.

Latin Twist book cover

What are your future plans for the business?

My current goals include updating some popular recipes to improve their visibility in Google rankings. 

Traditional Mexican recipes like pozole, tamales, masa for tamales, caldo de pollo, birria, and capirotada just to name a few, deserve higher rankings on Google simply because they come from a Mexican food blogger. However, in reality, this isn’t always the case. Therefore, I need to demonstrate to the Google gods that my recipes are indeed deserving of those top spots.

When I first started my blog, I didn’t focus on SEO (search engine optimization). I wrote from the heart, sharing stories about my recipes and family. However, as I’ve grown, I’ve come to realize the importance of SEO. Now, I’m aiming to enhance my blog’s ranking, potentially outranking bloggers who may not have a firsthand understanding of Mexican cuisine.

Another goal of mine is to educate others about social media and SEO. Sharing my knowledge and experiences in these areas is something I find incredibly fulfilling. Additionally, I hope to continue sharing my inspiring stories on various websites and podcasts, contributing to broader conversations about culture, food, and heritage.

What are some of your favorite books, blogs, podcasts, or YouTube channels?

I’m hooked on the Food Blogger Pro podcast. Their episodes feature fantastic guests who share invaluable tips for running a successful food blog.

The lead image and family photo used in this article were taken by Jenna Sparks.

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