Boxer Floyd Mayweather found his personal chef, Quiana Jeffries, through Instagram. One of Mayweather’s assistants was trawling the photo-sharing platform when she spotted some drool-worthy pics of crab-salad and bread pudding that Jeffries had prepared for celebrity life coach Tony Gaskins. It turns out all that #foodporn can be a great resume builder.
Mayweather flew Jeffries to his Las Vegas mansion to cook him a meal. That first meal involved breakfast potatoes, a spinach omelet with bell peppers and mushrooms, and croissant French toast covered in bananas Foster sauce. It also involved “Money” Mayweather “talking trash” in an attempt to intimidate Jeffries, but the chef kept her cool in the kitchen. Mayweather hired Jeffries on the spot, and offered her a $1,000-per-plate salary.
While Mayweather’s dietary needs are specific, they’re also incredibly spontaneous. “I remember one night—it had to be like 3am or 4am—he called me and said, ‘Chef, come over and make me something to eat. Make me some Top Ramen and fried turkey hot dogs with barbecue sauce.” And It’s not just Mayweather she must feed on incredibly short notice; it’s also whoever he’s entertaining, whether that’s Lil Wayne, 50 Cent, Birdman, or Justin Bieber.
So how, exactly, does a Le Cordon Bleu graduate from Gardena (by way of Compton) prepare meals for the greatest boxer alive?
We spoke with Jeffries (a.k.a., Chef Q) about everything from Mayweather’s love of Top Ramen, to her stint on Guy Fieri’s Guy’s Groceries Games, to what she cooked for the champ’s special guest, Lil Wayne.
What are some of Mayweather’s all-time-favorite foods?
I would definitely say tacos. He loves oxtail—anything Caribbean, really—and also soul food. But every week I’m making tacos, for sure. He has me making four different kinds: ground beef, ground turkey, shrimp, and chicken. He’s crispy shell all the way. He doesn’t do the soft shells at all.
What does he eat when he’s training for a fight?
We try to stick with anything that’s healthy, organic, high in protein, and low in carbs. He loves broccoli—that’s his favorite vegetable. But he also has his moments where he goes and gets a Burger King Whopper, or a Fatburger, or a Big Mac. His body is like a machine; he’s able to eat anything that he wants to and still perform the way he does.
He eats two or three times a day, and he’s not an overeater. He doesn’t eat large portions and he snacks throughout the day. I also make juice for him every day. I take all different kinds of fruits and vegetables and I juice them, which helps give him a lot of nutrients all at once. Again, his workouts are so intense that you just kind of wonder, like, How are you able to do this? I believe juicing helps because it gives him energy.
What’s the craziest thing Mayweather eats before working out?
I would have to say Top Ramen. He’s a huge Top Ramen fan. I’m so surprised Top Ramen hasn’t endorsed him, because he has boxes and boxes of it in his house. I remember one night—it had to be like 3am or 4am—he called me and he said, ‘Chef, I need you to come over and make me something to eat.’ And I was like, ‘Ok, cool, what would you like eat?’ And he was like, ‘Just make me some Top Ramen and some fried turkey hot dogs with barbecue sauce on it.’ And I was just like, ‘Are you serious?’ And he said, ‘Yeah, I’m for real.’ And so I said, ‘Ok, I’m on my way.’
Why does one of the world’s highest-paid athletes eat Top Ramen?
He says he likes it because it’s something that he grew up on. So it doesn’t matter how much money he has or what he can afford—that’s just something that’s a comfort food for him. When I first started working for him, I’m just like, ‘Okay, the richest athlete ever must eat, like, caviar and lobster and octopus and everything that’s gonna cost an arm, leg, and a foot every night.’ But he doesn’t. He’s a very simple eater, but at the same time, he’s picky. He likes what he likes, you know?
I’m so surprised Top Ramen hasn’t endorsed him, because he has boxes and boxes of it in his house.
Have you ever cooked something for him that he hated?
Pretty much everything I’ve made for him he’s enjoyed. He’s never really complained about anything, other than when I try to do something different with chicken. If I make it a different way, he’ll be like, “Chef, just put barbecue sauce on it. I’m black, I just like barbecue sauce.”
What was his victory meal after beating Pacquiao?
Top Ramen was his victory meal after the last two fights—the Maidana fight and the Pacquiao fight. I think he eats it after fights because if he gets hit in the mouth, he needs something soft to eat.
Who are the most memorable guests Mayweather’s had over for dinner?
I’m not the type of person who gets starstruck. Floyd can be an intimidating dude. But when I met him, his personality and my personality matched—I’m just as flamboyant as he is. But I will honestly say I was shocked when I cooked for Justin Bieber, Lil Wayne, 50 Cent, Chili from TLC, Birdman, and Nia Long.
What did you cook for Lil Wayne?
Tacos. And Bieber had tacos, too. When I cooked for Baby and 50 Cent, they had tofu.
How was your experience competing on Guy’s Grocery Games?
Being on cooking game shows is a different type of pressure than being in a restaurant or being in any kind of professional cooking environment. In those situations, you pretty much know what you’re gonna do ahead of time. So I wanted to see how I would do just cooking under the fire. And I actually loved it. It was a good experience, but it also humbled me even more than anything I’ve been through in my life. Guy Fieri is a pretty dope dude. He’s very down to earth and very funny. He has tattoos, and I have tattoos, and we have a lot in common.
The Burger King mascot was in Floyd’s training room. Does he ever eat Burger King?
He eats Burger King Whoppers. He actually just went there the other night. But you know, Floyd is a businessman, so anytime that he’s able to make money he’s gonna make money. He said they paid him like three to four million just to have the Burger King dude come out with him.
I’ve heard that Floyd pays you $1,000 per meal. Is that accurate?
Yep. And what’s crazy is, I didn’t even come up with that number. When I first starting working for him, I didn’t give him any type of fee. I pretty much left that up to him, and said pay me what I’m worth. The first night that I came down to Vegas, I left L.A. at midnight after working all day long. I got to Vegas at 4:30 in the morning, and the first thing he had me do was make him breakfast right there—like, right on the spot.
I made him a veggie omelet with onions, bell peppers, spinach, and mushrooms. And then I did breakfast potatoes and croissant french toast. I made a bananas Foster sauce to go on top of the french toast, and he fell in love right there.
His workouts are so intense that you just kind of wonder, like, How are you able to do this? I believe juicing helps because it gives him energy.
Were you nervous when you were cooking that breakfast?
I was a little nervous, actually, because his four kids were over at the time. They kind of put that pressure on. As soon as I got in the door they were looking at me, talking trash. Floyd talks a lot of trash so he was like, “You skinny. I thought you couldn’t trust a skinny chef. You look young, too. You sure you know what you doing?” And I’m just standing up to him, like, ‘Watch, you’re going to see I know what I’m doing.”
He didn’t know what I was doing. And he was like, “My last chef, man, she can cook.” And I was like, “Okay, just watch. Try me.” And he was like, “Yeah, you’re probably an amateur chef. You probably kind of know what you’re doing, but you don’t really know what you’re doing.” Like, “You probably got the number two spot.” And I said, “Nah, by the end of this week, I’m gonna have the number one spot.” The very next day he said, “Okay. I take that amateur part back.” I said, “Yeah, exactly.” And then by the end of that week he was like, “Man, you got the number one spot.” Like, “You dope. You know what you’re doing.” And I said, “I told you! You should never doubt me. Don’t ever judge a book by its cover.”
I read somewhere that you’re going to cook for him until the day he dies. Did he say that to you?
Yeah, he did. I told him he’s gonna be in a rocking chair and I’m gonna be feeding him soup.
How to Make Champ’s Juice Fuel
Makes 2.5 liters (or 10 cups)
This is the nutrient-rich juice that Chef Q makes Mayweather every day. “The juicer I have for Champ is called Breville Multi-Speed Juice Fountain, which I purchased at Bed, Bath & Beyond,” says chef. Jeffries says to put your juicer on level 5.
- 1 whole pineapple (skin removed)
- 4 red pears
- 4 Gala or Red Delicious apples
- 4 Navel oranges (peeled)
- 10-12 strawberries
- 2 cups kale
Note: All of the above fruits and vegetables are fresh; none are from a can. Purchase organic when possible.
Wash your fruit and vegetables. Cut the fruit into chucks so it fits into the juicer’s hole. You want to have a bowl set aside with ice underneath to strain the juice over—just in case you don’t like pulp. This amount of fruit will fill up the juicer’s pitcher about 2.5 times. “I mix it all together in a separate bowl once everything is juiced,” says Chef Q. “Once it’s mixed, pour yourself a glass and enjoy.”