Growing up, Karen’s family expressed their love through food and outdoor discovery. The kitchen, garden and ocean were her first classrooms taught by her grandmother and great-grandmother.  This was their way to express love, talk story and share knowledge.  In 1994 after receiving a degree of Fine Arts from the University of New Mexico, Karen moved to Telluride, Co to continue her culinary and outdoor education. 

In 1996 she began cooking for private clients and in 1998 moved to Kailua-Kona, HI to be with family and build her personal chef career. The years of 2005-2009 brought Karen to Bellingham, WA., where she was private chef to an executive client.  Now back on the Big Island, Ms. Burns’ lifestyle and culinary skills are continually inspired by the land and ocean.