Sonny Hurrell is a cook, and a popular content creator.
He has more than 1.5 million subscribers on his YouTube channel, ‘ThatDudeCanCook.’
Sonny Hurrell was born in 1988 in England to a British father and an American mother.
His mother worked as a schoolteacher at Waldorf schools and as a part of her job, she moved to different countries.
So, Sonny along with his parents travelled to many countries.
He grew up in Perth, Australia; at 8, he moved to the United States, initially, he moved to Colorado, and then to Northern California at 11; he stayed in California for a decade.
Then, at 21, Sonny moved back to England, then to the Netherlands and returned to England.
In 2014, he moved back to the United States.
Sonny has an elder brother, Lewis; he is a musician and he also featured in some of his videos.
Love for cooking-
At 15, Sonny started working as a dishwasher; at that time, his brother was working as a chef in the kitchen.
Thanks to the smells and sounds of cooking, Sonny got into cooking.
He started with making salads and desserts, and his cooking snowballed from there.
At 16, he started cooking in a restaurant in Sonoma County, California; eventually, he worked as a cook in four other restaurants in California.
Education & career-
At 21, Sonny went to England and studied biodynamics and agriculture for a couple of years at Emerson College, England.
At that time, he was also cooking part-time to earn money; then, he started cooking at several fine dining restaurants in the Netherlands.
Also, Sonny along with his brother worked in Fergus Henderson’s restaurants, St. John’s, and St John Bread and Wine in London.
After returning to the United States in 2014, he started working as a saucier at Viceroy Snowmass, Aspen.
Sonny worked as a Line Cook for 15 years in a dozen restaurants all around the world.
As he found it difficult to keep up with working as a Line Cook, around 2018, he started a private catering and cooking business in Aspen targeting affluent people.
By 2019, Sonny started providing organic meals to 20 different families in Aspen.
But during that time, he suffered a snowboarding accident; he snapped his right wrist, and his bones and tendons of his wrist got affected; he was fixated with metal pins at the wrist.
Sonny has been right-handed, and due to the injury, he found it difficult to rotate his right arm; consequently, it affected his work, and he started losing clients and his business started failing.
The COVID-19 pandemic put a full stop to his private cheffing career as he lost all his cooking gigs; later, he became a content creator; by that time, he had become a popular TikToker.
Becoming a content creator & becoming popular-
On 8 February 2019, Sonny started his YouTube channel, ‘ThatDudeCanCook.’
On 10 February 2019, he published his first video, ‘Healthy Caesar Salad | The Best Caesar salad Dressing recipe.’
At that time, Sonny was resistant to start a TikTok account, as he was indifferent to it because he felt that it was just a platform for dancing kids.
But eventually, he started his TikTok account and from August 2019, he started publishing videos; his first video was on rosemary salt which became viral, and this inspired him to continue working on social media.
Initially, Sonny was just repurposing YouTube videos for TikTok.
Later, his videos on potatoes, and then on chicken became viral on TikTok; thanks to this, from February 2020, he started seriously working on TikTok and started receiving decent views on his TikTok videos.
By that time, Sonny had been working on his YouTube channel for a year, but he had just a couple thousand subscribers on his channel, and it wasn’t gaining momentum unlike his TikTok account.
Within a few months of working on TikTok, he became popular; at that time, he posted a steak video which received 34 million views and helped him gain 380K followers in just three days; later, he reposted it, and his repost got 20 million views.
Even though Sonny became successful on TikTok, he continued working on his YouTube channel.
Sonny believes that publishing cooking videos during the pandemic helped his TikTok account grow, as at that time, people were confined to home and had free time and were willing to get back into cooking and learn cooking.
As of July 2023, he has 1.56M subscribers on his YouTube channel.
And has 276K followers on Instagram and 486K followers on his Facebook page.
Sonny earns from a variety of sources like advertisements, and ‘Super Thanks’ on his YouTube videos, affiliate marketing, and merchandise.
Initially, he just started with an iPhone 8 and didn’t have a microphone and lights; later, he upgraded to proper equipment.
He lives in Aspen, Colorado, United States.
Some interesting facts about Sonny Hurrell-
- He loves making brownies, gluten-free cakes, and simple desserts; he loves eating Japanese style nigiri.
- Gordon Ramsay, a British celebrity chef, responded to one of Sonny’s videos.
- At restaurants, he was into French, and Italian food; and at home, he loves cooking Indian, Thai, and Japanese food.
- Beef Wellington is Sonny’s favourite food to cook; his favourite dessert to cook is sticky toffee pudding (this is also the favourite dessert of Stephen Cusato, a popular food YouTuber).
- In addition to being a cook, he is also a drummer and a martial arts practitioner.
- Sonny was portrayed as a bakery chef in ‘A Piece of Cake’ movie; he was also a voice actor for this movie.
- He is inspired by Ram Dass, an American spiritual leader, and a popular writer (check his books).
- Sonny ends his videos by assaulting his refrigerator.
So, how are you inspired by the success story of Sonny Hurrell?
Share with me in the comment section below.