At bonappetit.com, we cover the intersection of food and culture in America. If that sounds broad, it’s because it’s meant to! To us, food is about everything and everything is about food. And we’re always on the lookout for stories about what cooking, eating, and dining out can show us about the rest of our lives. Our staff writers and Test Kitchen editors write many of our service-driven and recipe-focused content, but we rely on freelancers for a lot more: reported features, trend stories, personal essays, and opinion pieces. We look for writers who have a distinct voice, a unique perspective, a one-of-a-kind experience, a sense of humor, and/or deep expertise. We are committed to expanding our network of writers, as well as the scope of our coverage, to include more voices and stories from BIPOC communities. More than anything, writers should have intimate experience with the subjects they want to cover.
Profiles about interesting people doing interesting things: How baker and refugee Youssef Akhtarini opened Aleppo Sweets for homesick Syrians in Providence, RI. Why Senegalese chef Pierre Thiam left New York’s fine-dining scene to become an importer (and proselytizer) of the West African grain fonio. How Reyna Duong of Sandwich Hag changed the way restaurants in Dallas hire when she brought on a team of people with different abilities, including those with Down syndrome. Why Zaid Renato Consuegra Sauza, chef-owner of Pirate’s Bone Burgers in Kansas City and an undocumented immigrant, decided to risk his life and livelihood to speak out against injustice.
Reported trend pieces: How hatch chile season became the pumpkin spice of the Southwest. How food-related merch became a fashion status symbol. The origin story of the now-ubiquitous party bike (you know, those pedaled bars on wheels). An exploration into the USA’s sudden obsession with Japanese milk bread. How high-end omakase became the new top prize among New York City’s dining one-percenters. Are restaurant chairs finally becoming more comfortable? And what’s up with all the blankets?
Deep-dive reported stories (ideally timely, but not always necessary): How Georgia’s restaurants are dealing with reopening as the first state to lift COVID-19 lockdown. For asylum seekers at a tent camp at the U.S.-Mexico border, cooking is about more than survival. The story behind tavern-style pizza, Chicago’s true signature pie. The bizarre history of red sauce chain Buca di Beppo.
Personal essays that speak to a larger cultural moment or a specific event/time: A chef on how he’s managing being both a full-time parent and running a kitchen for first-responders during COVID-19. A writer on his attempt to perfect his mother’s pullao recipe, and what it taught him about “self improvement” during Ramadan. A writer on creating a pretend restaurant while quarantining at home. A Chicano food critic examines how his path to becoming a taco expert was paved with internalized racism.
Unexpected opinion pieces: A former competitive barista on her love for Pumpkin Spice Lattes. A whole-animal butcher describes why boneless skinless chicken breasts are so problematic. Why one bar owner donated $25K worth of rosé in response to an abortion ban. An ode to chewy food, a texture exalted in East and Southeast Asian cuisines that doesn’t get enough love in the west. The problem with white male chef redemption stories.