Virginia Willis Virginia Willis is a Food Network Kitchen chef and James Beard award-winning cookbook author. Her first cookbook, Bon Appetit, Y'all premiered in 2008 and since then, she's developed a stellar reputation for chef-inspired recipes for home cooks. She is has been featured in the NY Times, Washington Post, People Magazine, and USA Today. Fans love her knack for giving classic French dishes a down-home feel and reimagining Southern favorites. Beginning in 2019 she lost 65 pounds and has kept it off for well over a year. In 2022, her health journey was documented in Eating Well magazine as a weight loss success story. Virginia has embraced her new outlook on life and has become a cheerleader for those wanting to make their own life changes, "If a French-trained Southern chef can do it, you can, too!" About Southern Living Southern Living, a Dotdash Meredith Brand, celebrates the food, homes, places, and culture of the South. We reach 7.2 million readers a month. Our content is written by experienced journalists and fact checked for accuracy. Learn more about us and our editorial guidelines.