While we used to learn about food solely from cookbooks and cooking shows, those days are over. Now, all it takes is a few clicks on our smartphones to enter into the minds and kitchens of hundreds of different culinary professionals and enthusiastic home cooks. But with so much content available, it can be difficult to know where to start!
Whether you’re looking for some inspiration for the kitchen or to get started on your own path to becoming a food influencer, check out this list of some of the top food influencers. These individuals’ knowledge, experience, and ability to entertain has made them internet sensations.
1. Gordon Ramsay
On Instagram, famed Chef Gordon Ramsay posts content that matches his love for well-executed food and his knack for building and leading restaurants. Imagine beautiful photos displaying dishes served at his restaurants and shoutouts to back-of-house staff who churn out delicious meals at his restaurants.
While many content creators post similar content on Instagram and TikTok, Ramsay shows that these two platforms can display two different sides of one’s personality. On TikTok, he leans into his reputation for being a bit of a harsh critic to create comedic videos of him critiquing dishes created by other TikTokers. (Follow along to hear what he has to say about steak marinated in ketchup and deep-fried pizza!)
But not everything is for laughs. Ramsay also uses his TikTok account to share simple yet helpful cooking tips and recipes that garner compliments rather than critiques.
How to Get Started as a Food Influencer
While it may seem like food influencers post a viral piece of content and instantly rise to the top of social media platforms, becoming an influencer often takes a lot more work. Whether you hope to hit a million subscribers on YouTube or gain a following on TikTok, you’ll likely need to gain skills in content creation.
Some steps to becoming a food influencer include picking a niche, establishing a presence on at least one social platform, creating content, posting content, and interacting with followers. Once you have a strong following, you can begin to monetize your platform via means like affiliate marketing and promotional posts for food brands.
2. Jamie Oliver
Jamie Oliver is another chef who has taken his success on TV and capitalized on it using social media. He currently uses his Instagram feed to post photos and videos of dishes he’s created as well as introduce snippets of his personal life with his family.
His TikTok channel is more food-focused and highlights how to make dishes like cauliflower cheese pizza and mulled wine.
3. Yolanda Gampp
Yolanda Gampp, founder of How to Cake It, creates stunning cakes that resemble everything from a piled-high plate of nachos to a kiddie pool filled with water and a rubber duckie. Along with these disguised cakes, she also shows off her cake decorating skills by creating elegant and delicious cakes that are fit for celebrations of all kinds. Banoffee pie cake, anyone?
Gampp got her start on YouTube, but currently posts on multiple channels, including Instagram. Her personality is lively without being overwhelming, and her straightforward instructions encourage you to test out your own cake baking and decorating skills.
Along with providing visual and flavor inspiration, Gampp also posts detailed tutorials to help you get started on your cake journey.
4. Dana Shultz
If you ask someone in the food world if they know who Dana Shultz is, they might shake their head. But the Minimalist Baker? That name is much more likely to get a nod.
Shultz has gathered millions of followers by creating simple yet delicious recipes that require few ingredients, basic equipment, and less than an hour to prepare. She shows that while high-end dining has its place in the world, many consumers are craving meals they can easily make at home.
Plus, it doesn’t hurt that her food styling and food photography are on point! Shultz capitalizes on her ability to create stunning content by focusing on Instagram rather than TikTok.
5. Ella Mills
Ella Mills has tapped into the increasing interest in plant-based and vegan diets by creating Deliciously Ella. You can find her product recommendations, recipes, and meal-planning tips on Instagram and her website, and to a lesser extent on TikTok.
Her mouth-watering photos and easy-to-follow recipes have helped her connect with those increasing the number of vegetables they consume as well as those looking to incorporate vegan dishes into their diets.
6. David Chang
As the founder of one of the most famous restaurant groups in the United States, Momofuku, David Chang brings a lot to the table. Outside of his work with Momofuku, he also has played a major role in the hit Netflix series Ugly Delicious. In short, this guy has done a lot.
Follow along with him on Instagram to keep up with his latest ventures in the food world, get a peek into his personal life, and learn a cooking tip or two. And if you’re interested in exploring more about new ingredients and dishes, head on over to his TikTok account.
7. Alexis Nikole
Alexis Nikole takes viewers into the wild world of foraged goods with unrivaled enthusiasm. Watching her reels makes you more excited about pine cones and black locust flowers than you ever thought possible.
Not only can she help you find new flavors in your own backyard, but she also encourages you to think outside the box when it comes to ingredient selection and use. Plus, she brings a welcoming, unpretentious feel to the often secretive world of foraging.
Learn First, Influence Later
While each influencer brings their own spin to the world of content creation, all of them have a thorough understanding of their area of focus. Before Yolanda Gampp could instruct others on how to decorate cakes, she had to learn how to pipe fine lines and roll out smooth sheets of fondant. And before Gordon Ramsay could point out others’ mistakes, he had to know how to detect when a dish was under-seasoned or overcooked.
There are all sorts of ways you can gain culinary knowledge, and the options can feel quite overwhelming! Culinary school can provide you with a plan and schedule to help you advance your culinary skills. Plus, students also have the opportunity to explore subjects like business management and marketing. And if you’d like to explore the food world from an entrepreneurial perspective, consider enrolling in Escoffier’s Food Entrepreneurship program. This program dives into aspects of starting a food-related business, including content development and social media marketing.
To learn more about attending Escoffier, contact us today.
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