365 New Orleans: Valerie Hesse


365 New Orleans is focused on local artists and businesses. Every single day, for one year, a new person or place will be highlighted. Follow along on Instagram: @365NewOrleans 



Long before she began her career as a chef, Valerie Hesse‘s dad started her journey there. When he was in the Navy, he would frequently host parties for the reservists. Valerie recalls helping her mom peel shrimp, cutting vegetables, and getting it all together. Before you know it, she was planning the menu and cooking the whole thing!

Chef Valerie loved that party atmosphere. She quickly decided in college that sitting behind a desk was never going to be for her. After 3 to 4 years in the professional culinary world, she was drawn to catering because it reminded her of those parties long ago. Current day, she has catered for many moves, fancy parties, and even a former President.

When her dad had some health issues and was put on a reduced-sodium diet, he didn’t want to follow the doctor’s orders. Instead of fighting him, Valerie decided just to start making him food and leaving it in the fridge. A little over a year later, he was able to get off his meds – the same meds that were making him dizzy and not able to go out as much. After getting off the medications, dad was able to go out with his friends and get to church. He was a happy person again!

Having this first-hand experience with her dad, Valerie saw there was a real need for meal prep. You can now hire her to make your restricted diet life more comfortable too! While that’s only a small portion of her business, it’s an important one in many people’s lives.




1. What services do you offer? 

I’m a private/personal chef. I offer a variety of services that can make my client lives easier. I offer meal prep, cooking classes, private chef services for parties, and I will even go as far as grocery shopping for you.


2. How long have you been in business? 

I have been cooking for over 20 years, but I started this venture in October 2018.


3. How do people find you online? 

Facebook, Instagram @chefsnola, and Twitter @chefsnola


4. What is lesser known about your business that you wish more people knew? 

Low-sodium food doesn’t have to be awful! There are lots of people who need to be on low-sodium diets, which is just technically no salt added. Doctors and dietitians are not always foodies but the people of New Orleans want delicious food! I can make some amazing choices for you that you won’t even miss that extra salt.


5. Lagniappe Info. 

Due to the lack of a commercial kitchen, I will go to the store, come to your house, and make a week’s worth of food for you. Most people eat out a couple of times a week, so I prepare about 8 meals. But I cook, clean-up, put the food away, and leave! It’s so easy for you.

I can work with all types of dietary restrictions.

For your dinner parties, go enjoy your guests and don’t worry about what’s going on in the kitchen. This is a great opportunity for you to not stress about cooking and enjoy your home with your friends.

As a chef, we typically say “food comes first.” Meaning that our satisfaction comes from you telling me that you loved the food – that’s when I’m happy.

Older people sometimes have mobility issues and my services can be a great option for them instead of eating frozen dinners that are filled with sodium and preservatives. 


Contact Val directly at chefsnola@gmail.com


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