Anyone who’s an avid baker, or even casually bakes, has likely viewed a baking tutorial on YouTube at some point — and there’s a high probability that one of those tutorials was from Rosanna Pansino’s Nerdy Nummies channel. Pansino has gained quite the large following since she first launched her YouTube channel in 2011. Since then, her videos have been viewed a whopping 2.4 billion times (and counting) and she has well over 10 million subscribers at the time of publishing. She is able to draw in viewers with her incredible baking skills that are centered on her love of all things nerdy, and her bubbly personality in the videos is a wonderful bonus.
Pansino had a long journey to YouTube superstardom. She was born in Seattle, Washington on June 8, 1985. She grew up there with her family, including her younger sister, Molly Lu, who makes appearances on Pansino’s YouTube channel. From baking with her grandmother to baking in front of millions, let’s look at the stunning transformation of Rosanna Pansino.
A baker in the making
Since Rosanna Pansino left the days of living in obscurity behind and skyrocketed to fame with her YouTube channel, she has put down roots in sunny Los Angeles where she films all of her baking tutorials for her Nerdy Nummies channel. Pansino revealed in an interview with New Media Rockstars that she developed her love of baking thanks to her grandmother. She stated, "My grandmother loved baking and because of her, baking has always been a hobby of mine. I have always loved being creative with my food and making themed sweets for my friends."
This is not only a sentimental skill she developed thanks to her grandmother, but is also what would lead to her making a highly successful career out of what started out as just a "hobby". She echoed this sentiment in an interview with Business Insider, where she credited her grandmother for introducing her to baking. Subsequently, she continued to bake for friends and family for special occasions, and even started to create "themed treats" after receiving plenty of requests from her friends.
From nerdy student to aspiring actress
During the formative years of our youth, most of us go through the dreaded "awkward phase" — and it seems that even Pansino wasn’t immune. During an interview with Huffington Post about her Nerdy Nummies YouTube channel, they talked about how she doesn’t come across like a "nerd" herself. She went on to explain, "I never called myself that, but it’s what other people called me. The things I enjoyed growing up were considered nerdy at the time. I loved reading, science, video games, math and took AP calculus in high school."
She also developed a love for the entertainment industry, and after college she went on to move to Los Angeles and pursue her dreams. Pansino stated that she did get jobs within the entertainment industry, such as being a hand double for the boy who played Jennifer Love Hewitt’s son on Ghost Whisperer. She was also an extra on Glee for two seasons and even spent time as a production assistant. But it was only a matter of time before she developed a show of her own.
The humble beginnings of a soon-to-be viral YouTube channel
If you have seen any of Rosanna Pansino’s recent YouTube videos, you will immediately notice that the production value of her videos are extremely high quality. But that didn’t happen overnight. When Pansino first started her career on YouTube, it was under the advisement of her manager, Mike Lamond, who is also a fellow YouTuber. In this interview with Business Insider, she stated that Lamond "encouraged me to start a YouTube channel as a way to practice speaking, entertaining, and being more comfortable in front of a camera." This was initially suggested to help her with her aspirations of becoming an actress.
In the very early days of her channel, she used an $80 dollar flip-camera and edited every single episode she made by herself. As her viewership and success grew, so did her production team. She upgraded her equipment as well to make higher quality videos for her growing list of subscribers.
She had to choose between YouTube and acting
While Pansino’s YouTube channel was increasingly gaining viewers, her agent at the time felt that she was spending far too much time making videos on YouTube when she could be interning or auditioning instead. She told Cosmopolitan, "My agent pulled me into a meeting and told me I had to choose. They said, ‘You either have to quit your YouTube channel or I’m going to drop you.’" At this time, she wasn’t making any money from her YouTube videos, but she knew that she potentially could.
So, she decided to continue her YouTube videos, knowing that her agent would drop her. She spent a year building her YouTube channel and working on it full-time, while using her life savings of $20,000 to not only live off of but to invest more into her channel. Luckily for Pansino, that dedication and sacrifice paid off, and after that first year, she was beginning to make money from her YouTube channel. And, as we all know, her success didn’t stop there.
Staying in shape with a sweet tooth
It’s no secret that Pansino is in incredible shape, especially for someone who seems to be indulging in sweet treats on a regular basis. But there is a perfectly good reason for that. She is consistently working out and making changes in what she eats. On her personal blog, she details her daily exercise routine, writing: "For exercise, I go on a daily morning walk with my dog Cookie. It isn’t an intense workout but keeps me toned and gives me energy for the day."
She continues, "As for my diet… I have never been able to diet. I love trying new food, restaurants, and sweets everywhere I go. Being extremely petite I’m a big fan of portion control. I enjoy all food in moderation." She went on to write, "I don’t know what tomorrow brings, but it just feels right trying to reach my goals one step at a time." Totally realistic and relatable.
She designed her own bakeware line for Wilton
The accomplished YouTube baker was bound to find success beyond YouTube, and this collab is a major example of that. Wilton is a popular company that makes a wide range of products consisting of anything and everything you could need when baking. So, it makes perfect sense that they would want none other than Pansino to create her own line of bakeware for them.
Wilton conveyed in their press release that the line would consist of different decorating products as well as kitchen tools and everything in between, which Pansino helped create for her Ro™ collection. The designs themselves are brightly colored with quirky and "whimsical" elements to each product. The first line of products came out in the summer of 2017, but Pansino’s quirky and nerdy baking products for Wilton didn’t stop there — the company and Pansino continued to collab on new products for the Ro collection, which she showed off in a YouTube video in July 2018.
Adding published cookbook author to her resume
On November 3, 2015, Pansino published her very first cookbook, aptly titled the Nerdy Nummies Cookbook, which is based off her wildly popular YouTube channel of the same name. The book quickly became a New York Times bestseller and was yet another great achievement for the successful YouTube star. When detailing her goals in writing the cookbook with Tubefilter, Pansino said, "I wanted the Nerdy Nummies cookbook to be an embodiment of the show. I am a very visual learner so each recipe in the book has 6 or more step-by-step photos walking you through the process. The book has over 420 full-color photos."
Her subscribers and fans were thrilled to learn even more from the incredibly talented Pansino through her cookbook and, lucky for her viewers, she released a new cookbook on October 23, 2018. Pansino’s second cookbook, Baking All Year Round, has 86 recipes with detailed instructions for several different holidays throughout the year. She also included vegan, gluten-free, and dairy-free options for those with food restrictions or allergies.
The certified YouTube superstar’s net worth
As of 2016, Rosanna Pansino was reportedly earning an estimated $6 million dollars, according to Forbes. That is really astounding when you think about the fact that she started her YouTube channel with an $80 flip camera and was living off her life savings for a year just to get her channel off the ground. She was also reportedly one of the top ten highest paid YouTube creators in 2016 according to that same Forbes article, but in this interview with CNBC in 2017 at Vidcon, she says that, "From the very beginning, right when I started making videos on YouTube, money wasn’t even a factor."
Pansino has also been smart about how she manages her money from a young age. She told Money, "So from a young age… if I made $40 babysitting, then I would save 10% of it. I put that into my savings account and that was my rainy-day fund. … It wasn’t easy." While it was tough at first, she learned to put the 10% away and not look at it again.
She is still growing her baking empire
As of October 2018, Rosanna Pansino is not only promoting her latest cookbook and continuing to work with Wilton on products for her collection, but she is also continuously creating new and exciting baking tutorials for her YouTube channel. This results in her working about 100 hours a week, according to this interview she did with CNBC. She revealed that her dream is to keep creating content that she is "passionate about". She feels that viewers also enjoy watching someone who loves what they’re doing and what they’re creating, which Pansino clearly does.
Aside from the already hectic schedule she’s maintaining, she also was recognized for her charitable work with the Make A Wish Foundation on October 19, 2018. Pansino’s success shows no signs of slowing down in the near future with a continually growing viewership on her YouTube channel and the "secret projects" she has yet to reveal.