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From the Pistons and Tigers to the USWNT: Meet Detroit chef Teren Green

Detroit chef Teren Green
Posted at 4:22 PM, Aug 24, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-25 17:57:28-04

Teren Green, a Detroit chef, has taken his passion for cooking and turned it into a career. What he never expected though, was where the kitchen could take him and what bigger purpose his dishes would serve. Green says he got his love for cooking from his mom and knew as a teenager he’d work in the culinary field.

“I was about seventeen or eighteen when I was like, ‘I think I like cooking more than anything else,’” said Green.

One of his most popular dishes is what he calls his “Power Bowl.” It is a dish that can be eaten hot or cold with a base of starch with brown rice, sweet potato, quinoa, and farro. Different proteins are added such as chickpeas, edamame, and almonds. Then comes the vegetables and fruit: blueberries, purple cabbage, arugula, and cherry tomato. He tops it with a seared piece of chicken breast cooked with olive oil, salt, pepper, and garlic. The final touch is a homemade pesto dressing with a special ingredient of cilantro.

Green cooked this dish for WXYZ Sports Reporter Jeanna Trotman as he discussed his career growth and inspirations. Green’s chef experience started in fine dining. It took him away from his home state of Michigan to a resort in upstate New York. He returned to Detroit to cook at the Renaissance Center downtown and that’s when he entered the world of sports.

Green got a job with the Detroit Pistons in Auburn Hills and then a similar role with the Tigers as part of a team of chefs. In 2019, he was connected by a dietician to the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team. He interviewed, did a few trials at a few games and tournaments, and then traveled with the team to France for the 2019 World Cup.

“We went to France for the World Cup and we won, so they had to keep me,” Green laughed.

So after serving the team in France in 2019, then Japan in 2021, more lies on the horizon for Teren Green and the USWNT. He’s set for the 2023 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, followed by the 2024 Olympics in Paris.

“I am happy to be an American, there’s nothing swaying that judgement,” said Green.

In July of 2022, he returned to Detroit from the CONCACAF tournament in Mexico with a win, but he also suffered his biggest loss.

“I had the worst time of my life mixed with the best time of my life,” said Green.

Green’s mom lived with multiple myeloma for 12 vibrant years until the cancer was too much for her to fight. Just four days after Teren returned from working with the team in Mexico, Shirley Green passed away.

“We really did have a foodie-relationship,” recalled Green. “I didn’t know it at first, but I can see it now.”

Green said cooking is a way to honor and remember his mother.

“She is in all of my seasonings and my creations. My creativity,” he said. “She’s involved and I can honor her through my cooking.”

Whether it is for a friend or a professional athlete, with every ingredient used, pinch of salt added, and Power Bowl served, Green’s inspiration is unwavering.

“She’s looking down on me telling me to fix my posture” laughed Green. “Telling me to keep going, doesn’t want anything to stop me, not to mourn too long, don’t cry too much over her. So I’m just going to keep enjoying life and do the best I can.”

With his potential at an all-time high and so many things to look forward to with the World Cup and the Olympics, the best is yet to come for Teren Green. His Power Bowl is on sale at Cakes and Shakes on Woodward Avenue in Highland Park. All proceeds from the bowls go to the memorial of his mom, Shirley Green.