Martha Stewart ‘smuggled food’ to bake for pals in prison, former inmates reveal

Martha Stewart didn’t let being incarcerated stop her from baking some sweet treats.

A new preview clip from CNN’s “The Many Lives of Martha Stewart” documentary obtained by People claims the lifestyle expert, now 82, may have “smuggled food” into her private dorm in prison so she could practice her craft while behind bars in the 2000s.

“Everyone smuggles food out of kitchens,” Susan Spry, who labeled herself as Stewart’s “prison friend,” said in the documentary.

“I mean, what else are you going to make? Unless it’s smuggled food.”

Meg Phipps, who was also locked up at West Virginia’s Alderson Federal Prison Camp with Stewart, recalled receiving a surprise dessert from her.

The women made the claims in CNN’s “The Many Lives of Martha Stewart” documentary, according to People. Instagram / @marthastewart48
“Everyone smuggles food out of kitchens,” Susan Spry confessed. “I mean, what else are you going to make?” The Martha Blog

“How we communicated was by note, a handwritten note and someone from that cottage or dorm, you had to wait for someone to take that in for you,” she recalled.


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She went on to claim she once received a note along with a baked apple from Stewart.

Another former inmate, Meg Phipps, claimed the lifestyle guru once made her a baked apple with caramel. Getty Images
“I suspect some of this may have come from the cafeteria, which we’re not supposed to do,” she noted. AP

“She had already tackled the idea of cooking in your dorm or cottage by using the microwave and what resources that you could find,” she theorized, “because the baked apple had caramel on it and probably some cinnamon.”

Phipps added, “I suspect some of this may have come from the cafeteria, which we’re not supposed to do.”

Phipps, who was released from prison in 2007 after serving more than three years for extortion, fondly remembered throwing a potluck on Stewart’s last day behind bars at Alderson.

Stewart served five months in West Virginia’s Alderson Federal Prison Camp between 2004 and 2005. Thomas Hinton
She was found guilty of using insider knowledge to trade stocks and then lying about it. Thomas Hinton

“We brought different dishes, but Martha did bring a caramel flan, and I don’t know how she made it,” she remembered.

“It’s a big part about what made prison tolerable is that fellowship of cooking and celebrating someone going home. She thanked people for making her time there go as well as it did.”

As previously reported, the celebrity chef served five months in prison between 2004 and 2005 followed by five months of home confinement after she was found guilty of lying to federal investigators about a stock sale that took place in December 2001, according to the New York Times.

The cookbook author’s prison stint did not negatively impact her success. Getty Images for CCTV Prelude to Lunar New Year

She was accused of acting on insider knowledge when she decided to sell nearly 4,000 shares of ImClone Systems, a biopharmaceutical company.

She was found guilty of conspiracy, obstruction of justice and two counts of making false statements.

Stewart’s prison stint did very little to hurt her reputation and her company, Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia.

She went on to star in two more television shows and released a book just months after her release. Getty Images for iHeartRadio

In fact, within months of her release from prison, she debuted a book filled with business knowledge and advice, titled “The Martha Rules”.

She also premiered two new shows – a talk show titled “The Martha Stewart Show” and her own “Apprentice” spinoff, “The Apprentice: Martha Stewart.”

Her empire has only grown since then, as she has released dozens of new cookbooks, developed a line of CBD products for humans and animals, launched a “World of Martha” Amazon storefront and wowed on the cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue in 2023 as the oldest woman to ever grace its cover.

In 2023, she became the youngest woman to cover the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue. AP

In 2017, the businesswoman admitted she sometimes worries about her jail time overpowering all she has accomplished.

“I don’t want that to be the major thing of my life. It’s just not fair,” she candidly told Katie Couric on her eponymous podcast.

“It’s not a good experience and it doesn’t make you stronger,” she continued. “I was a strong person to start with and thank heavens I was. And I can still hold my head up high and know that I’m fine.”