Creators On The Rise: Cassie Yeung’s parents gave her three months to make it as a content creator. Then she got cast in a Gordon Ramsay show.

By 07/26/2023
Creators On The Rise: Cassie Yeung’s parents gave her three months to make it as a content creator. Then she got cast in a Gordon Ramsay show.

Welcome to Creators on the Rise, where we find and profile breakout creators who are in the midst of extraordinary growth.

Cassie Yeung knew her parents weren’t going to like what she had to tell them.

She’d been a professional dancer for most of her early life, and as an adult had transitioned into a successful nine-to-five job, working in the sort of position that “all Asian parents want you to do,” she says.


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But she wasn’t happy. And she couldn’t shake the idea that she would be really, really good at content creation.

So she broke it to her parents. “I just sat them down,” she says. “I was like, ‘Hey, I really feel like this is something I could be successful in. I really want to share Asian cuisine. I’ve always loved cooking.'”

To her surprise, her parents were “actually very receptive,” she says. Receptive, but strict: They gave her a deadline. She could take three months to do whatever she wanted with content, but if, at the end of those three months, things weren’t working out, she had to go back to her established career.

Yeung didn’t let the pressure get to her. She quit her job and began pouring all her time into content, treating that like her new nine-to-five (and then some). Her hard work paid off almost immediately. Within two months, she had numerous viral videos and 50,000 followers.

Then she got the kind of call most culinary enthusiasts can only dream of: Gordon Ramsay-hosted cooking series Next Level Chef wanted her as a contestant.

We’ll let her tell you the rest below.


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A post shared by Cassie Yeung (@cassyeungmoney)

This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

Tubefilter: It’s so funny, I logged on this morning to do a little refresher to make sure I’m up to date with your current videos. I just made egg drop soup for dinner last night, and that’s like your first video on your TikTok right now.

Cassie Yeung: Oh my god, that’s hilarious. It really is. Gotta love egg drop soup.

Tubefilter: It’s always good. Okay, pretend somebody’s reading this and doesn’t know who you are, hasn’t seen your stuff. Give me a little bit of background about you, where you’re from, and your early life before TikTok.

Cassie Yeung: Beautiful. My name is Cassie Yeung, I’m now 29 years old. Originally from South Brunswick, New Jersey, but I live in Philadelphia now. I’m actually a retired professional dancer. I grew up professionally dancing my entire life. I went to school at Rutgers University, where I was on the dance team. Once I graduated, I went to dance for the Brooklyn Nets, and then I moved to California, with hopes of continuing to dance.

I ended up taking more of a nine-to-five desk route, the way all Asian parents want you to do. I was also doing fitness instruction on the side, which was like my outlet. My sister actually recently got married last year in May, which is when I started my TikTok journey. When she got married, I decided to just move back to the East Coast permanently, because I never really thought I would settle down in California.

That’s when I decided, “I don’t really want to continue down this nine-to-five path.” I wasn’t really happy with my career, and I really felt like I could be a successful content creator. That was definitely a tough conversation to have with my Asian parents once again, and I just sat them down. I was like, “Hey, I really feel like this is something I could be successful in. I really want to share Asian cuisine. I’ve always loved cooking.”

My parents were actually very receptive, they gave me a three-month deadline. “If this doesn’t work out, then you have to explore other options.” I started posting, and just going for it, showing up every day like it was already my full-time job. Very quickly, a few of my videos, which were all cooking, went viral, and within the first two months, I think I had 50,000 followers, and I actually was able to get casted for a Gordon Ramsay cooking show Next Level Chef.

Tubefilter: That’s amazing.

Cassie Yeung: Thank you.

Tubefilter: What was that experience like?

Cassie Yeung: That was crazy. I think everyone’s immediate question is always, “Is he as mean in person?” I really don’t think he was mean, but I will say, he’s Gordon Ramsay. He’s naturally intimidating. I put a lot of intimidation on myself, I’m guessing as well, but it was the best experience. Would I do another cooking competition again? I’m not really sure if that’s in the cards for me since I’m a very forgetful person, but it was the best learning experience. I always say, “I wish I could have gone to culinary school,” but it was a very much accelerated culinary school for me learning from the best mentors I could.

Tubefilter: How long was the filming process?

Cassie Yeung: I was there about two weeks. Those that made it longer in the show were close to a month, I would say.

Tubefilter: Still, it is a very accelerated experience.

Cassie Yeung: Very accelerated.

Tubefilter: I’ve always wondered, because I also love cooking, but I have ADHD, so every time I watch a cooking show and they’re like, “Okay, watch me, and then you’ll get to make this with these 15 ingredients,” I’m like, “I would perish.”

Cassie Yeung: Oh my gosh. I think people underestimate. Obviously, watching from the couch, you’re like, “Why would they mess that up, and how could they do that? It’s so simple.” Then, you get there, and you’re just like, there’s so much added attention, and there’s cameras, and there’s Gordon Ramsay yelling at you, and it’s just wild. It’s definitely wild.

@cassyeungmoney Takeout cravings satisfied 🤝 #lomein #chinesetakeout ♬ I Only Have Eyes for You – The Flamingos

Tubefilter: Yes! Well, within two months you got picked up for that. I hope your parents were pleased.

Cassie Yeung: [laughs] Yes.

Tubefilter: Then how have things gone from then to now?

Cassie Yeung: Things have just skyrocketed since then. I will say, after the show, I took a little bit of a break, and then I just got back into it once I returned back from filming. After I filmed, I actually went to Italy, and went around Europe. Then, I had already had a pre-planned trip to Singapore, which is where my mother is from. I flew straight to Singapore, where I actually got to experience a lot of, just the culture and the cuisine, and the ways that my mom learned, which was really special to me because obviously– Well, not obviously, I didn’t mention this yet, but I learned a lot of the cooking from my own mother. To see how she grew up, learning how to cook was very special to me. I also got to learn a lot of family recipes, which I shared on my platform as well. It was an easy transition getting back into content for me after my little break after the show, because now I had all these special family recipes to share.

Then, when I came home, I just began sharing, again, the family recipes, going into a series of recreating takeout dishes, which landed very well with people because that is how they see Asian cuisine, is Chinese takeout. I think people who are unfamiliar with authentic Asian cuisine automatically resort to General Tso’s chicken, orange chicken, lo mein, those typical dishes, which I do love making.

I started making those dishes, and those are the ones that picked up the best. Within the past few months, I will say, has been the most growth for me. There was one video in particular that went viral, which was my beef and broccoli recipe, which is something that everyone knows and loves. It was really fun for me to be able to show people how easy it is to make, how unintimidating it is, and just, not only showing that it is easy to make, but you can make it better at home than what you get at Chinese takeout.

Tubefilter: I’m not surprised that that’s very popular. Do you have a current production schedule, where you’re aiming to post X number of videos per week? What do you do behind the scenes?

Cassie Yeung: Behind the scenes, there is some planning. I like to feed into comments, and what people are requesting me to make. Where it used to be, I started out just making things that I would make on the daily, and what I was craving, and just started filming and posting that. Now, I’ve transitioned into, some people see one meal, and it’s like, “Oh, I want to know how to make this now. Can I make this with the same ingredients that you’ve made with this?”

I think people are starting to learn that, once you have your staple Asian pantry ingredients, really, there’s so many recipes you can make from that, that are very similar in a way. Now, I would say my schedule is really just going through my comments, and seeing what the most popular is when it comes to requests in the comments. Then, I will go to the store, usually film that because people love to see the inside of even an Asian market, because that could be unfamiliar and intimidating to people who haven’t grown up with that as well. I’ll post that, create some excitement for recipe to come, and usually, I’ll try to film that same night, edit, and post in the same night as well. Right now, I’m aiming for a video every few days, depending on– I still try to keep things organic, and between enjoying life too, but I do love to have new content out for people to see every few days.

Tubefilter: Got it. Okay. How many hours would you say goes into the average video?

Cassie Yeung: Oh, man. I wish I knew. I will say a 30-minute recipe usually takes me an hour and a half to actually cook, between moving the camera and making sure I get every line out. Then, there’s cleaning, which is another 30, 45 minutes. There’s the typing out of the recipe before making the recipe, which is another 30 minutes. Editing the video can take another hour.

Then, uploading and making sure I have the captions there as well, can take another 30, 40 minutes. I’m not the best at math. I just went backwards. I would say, honestly, when it comes to a full production of a video, it could be close to like five, six hours sometimes.

@cassyeungmoney I’ll spend money on many things but not on something I know I can make better at home #beefandbroccoli #chinesetakeout ♬ Mind Yo Business – Lakeyah

Tubefilter: Do you have any plans for this upcoming year? Do you have any goals, any projects that you’re working on?

Cassie Yeung: A lot of exciting projects I’m working on right now. A cookbook should be coming out in the near future. I’m really working hard toward that, because that is, I think having a hard copy of these recipes would be amazing, not only for people who are just learning how to cook, because my ultimate goal is to just share, again, just the love for this cuisine, and show people how easy it is to make.

For somebody to have that in their house, would be absolutely amazing. I’m also working on coming out with merch, just expanding my own personal brand, because I have a lot of taglines, I would say, that people have picked up on and know will love now. I’m also really hoping that I can start to do some popups. My goal has never really been to own a restaurant. For me, what I really want to do is, to be able to move around, be more interactive with my followers, and be able to cook with them. I’m really excited for that because I know a lot of people struggle to, maybe they don’t have an Asian market by them, so I want to be able to give people the right tools, the right ingredients. Sometimes the hardest part about cooking is getting the right ingredients, and also just portioning them out, the cleaning, all of that stuff. The actual cooking part is super exciting and fun. I would love to be able to be hands-on with my followers, and be there, teaching them, because right now, obviously, they’re learning through the screen, and they get to do it by themselves. To be able to give people the tools to do so, and be there with them, I think would be so special.

It is so fun for me. Honestly, actually, when I hit 500,000 followers, I did like a TikTok live cooking. I just ahead of time told everyone what ingredients to get. Again, it was hard for some people, we ended up making dumplings and hand-pulled noodles, which is something I don’t think anyone would really make by themselves. To be able to just tell people like, “Hey, if you need some more time, let me know, raise your hand virtually.” It was really fun. I think, to translate that into an actual live cooking, where we can be in person would be just so amazing.

Tubefilter: Absolutely. I’m glad that people who don’t have an Asian market still are able to connect with you, and experience the kind of ingredients we get every day. I wanted to wrap up by mentioning you’re on this year’s Visionary Voices list at TikTok, so what was that experience like for you?

Cassie Yeung: It’s honestly a dream. I [chuckles] didn’t think it was real at first. Definitely thought it was spam, but it was really amazing, not only to be nominated, but to be able to go to the events that TikTok hosted. It was such a beautiful– I went to the one in New York, as well as the one in LA, both so beautiful to just be in a room full of API creators with just similar aspirations and goals of translating their love for this culture.

Something that I touched on because I actually was able to speak on the panel in New York, which was very special to me as well, was that I wish we had a platform like TikTok when I was growing up. Just because, personally, I received a lot of Asian hate and xenophobia, especially, when it came to bringing school lunches, and I call this the lunchbox moment, which I think people may not even– Just being Asian, my experience is, our food looks and smells different than typical school lunches.

It’s not chicken fingers and fries. I think a lot of people back then, were very easy or quick to judge and mock. Now, with a platform like TikTok, it’s really amazing, because we are creating an interest, respect, and just to not only eat the foods and to respect it, but also to be making it at home. To be nominated for the Visionary Voices list was so special to me, because it’s been my goal to stop that judgment on this cuisine. It’s one of the most amazing cuisines in this world. Now, that that’s being recognized by people is really, really amazing.

@cassyeungmoney Replying to @Tomeiya when the first bite makes you wanna cry 🥲 #padthai ♬ Princess Diana – Ice Spice & Nicki Minaj

Tubefilter: Anything else readers should know about you?

Cassie Yeung: I’m like, “Where do I start?” I don’t know if there’s really anything in particular. Just that I’m super thankful to have this platform. Again, I think that I took a big risk in just wanting to quit everything to share this love for food. Now that people are receiving it well, it just means so much to me.

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