Want to know the secret ingredient to every successful food blog? Passion. If you’ve got that, it’s time to roll up your sleeves, tie on your favorite apron, and get cooking (or typing).
But before you can even think about details and logistics, you need to think big picture. What will your blog accomplish? What will set it apart? As with anything worth doing, creating a food blog will take hard work and dedication. Here are five things to make sure you do when starting a food blog.
Refine Your Skills
You may already be excellent at cooking, but any good chef knows the learning is never done. How will you keep improving your art? One option is to pursue a degree or diploma with Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts, which is renowned for its culinary programs.
Chef Tiffany Moore, an Escoffier alumna, understands the importance of pushing herself to grow. Moore attended Escoffier and participated in an externship that gave her the hands-on experience she needed to elevate her craft. She shares what she’s learned about cooking and promotes her business in her food blog, Tiffmo the Food Artist.
If food blogging is your goal, give it your all. Moore urges all people passionate about cooking to put in the work:
“If it’s your passion, if it’s something that you cannot stop thinking about, that’s what you’re supposed to be doing. And take that time to go and really focus on it.”
Tiffany Moore, Escoffier Online Culinary Arts Graduate
Find Your Niche
The internet is saturated with food blogs, but that shouldn’t discourage you from starting one. You just have to commit to setting yours apart from the rest. A good way to do this is to focus on a single area of cooking. Finding a niche will bring the right readers to your blog and help you grow a following.
The Sum of All Sweets is a food blog that Escoffier graduate and current Escoffier Orientation and Tutoring Manager, Rachel Wilson runs in partnership with Escoffier Chef Instructor Ryan Hodros. Wilson creates delicious desserts and uses her Escoffier training to develop one-of-a-kind recipes that combine traditional pastry-making techniques with modern flavors. Without formal training, Wilson may not have explored the world of baking as thoroughly on her own.
You may choose to do a little bit of everything in your blog, but you should lean into one thing—whether that’s a type of cuisine or a cooking style—that you’re best at. This will make it easier to maintain your blog and target readers interested in your brand.
Become an Authority
If you’re going to create a great food blog, you need to show people why you’re qualified to teach them about food. Attending a culinary institute is just one way to gain credibility as a chef, although there are many ways to demonstrate authority.
As one of the most reputable food blogs in the country, America’s Test Kitchen is a great example of a blog with authority. Founded in 1993, ATK has established itself as a trusted cooking source over the years by upholding rigorous standards of quality in recipe development, hiring accomplished chefs and writers like Christopher Kimball, and staying on top of trends in cooking.
ATK has earned a reputation for being reliable and innovative. A reputation like this doesn’t happen overnight, but investing in earning your readers’ respect and trust is more than worth it.
As a food blogger, confidence is key. If you show confidence and courage from the start, and you demonstrate expertise, your readers will take you seriously and respect what you’re doing.
Identify Your Audience
Next, you need to think about who you’ll be creating content for—your audience.
You can look to Serious Eats for inspiration here. This popular food blog is for the home chef that’s serious about cooking. Not quite beginners but not quite experts, this blog’s audience is composed of intermediate-level food enthusiasts that want to challenge themselves.
So how do you decide who you want your audience to be? If you’re somewhat new to cooking or have not trained professionally, you may want to cater to chefs still learning the basics. If you’re a practiced chef with certifications to prove it, you may choose to focus on helping readers understand what makes techniques effective and flavors complimentary.
There is no correct answer for who your audience should be, but you should be thinking about them now. As your blog grows, you will have a clearer idea of what type of reader you want to focus on.
Decide What You Hope To Accomplish
Another important step when starting a food blog is to decide on a trajectory for your blog that will help you realize your long-term career dreams.
Whether you hope to run a food business like Chef Tiffany Moore, make better food for the people you love like Chef Rachel Wilson, or encourage a range of home chefs like America’s Test Kitchen, you should think about how this blog will fit into your life.
The Kitchn is a blog dedicated to “helping everyone live happier, healthier lives at home through their kitchen.” This broad mission statement helps The Kitchn creators decide what to create, how to create it, and who to create it for.
Whatever it is you choose to work toward with your blog, commit to it. Your goals may change over time, but your blog should never be without a purpose.
What next steps will you take to ensure success for your blog? You may get to work perfecting your best recipes, researching food blogs you admire, or reaching out to friends and family for feedback on your food.
You may also decide to take the next step in a culinary career and get that diploma or degree you’ve always wanted. A formal education from an institute like Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts can help you feel more confident in your abilities and qualified to be the very best food blogger you can be. Request information about Escoffier to learn more about what a culinary program can do for you.
For more ways to share your passion for cooking with the world, check out these articles:
- How To Become a Foodie Influencer
- How To Promote Your Restaurant on Social Media
- Building an Online Pastry Shop
This article was originally published on February 20, 2017, and has been updated.