The Food Stylist’s Handbook 2nd Edition

The Food Stylist’s Handbook
Styling tips, tricks, and surprises for media events, bloggers and food lovers

Article by Linda Kissam

Photo: H Winters

The secret world of food styling comes sharply into focus in this handbook for food lovers, chefs and bloggers who want to make the transition to food styling.

A food stylist helps produce a photo that sells a brand, product, sandwich, plate, lifestyle, chef, or restaurant. The Food Stylists Handbook introduces the reader how to turn predictable food into the food and drink of the gods right before the camera’s eye.

Learn the tricks of the trade to keep food looking fresh and mouth-wateringly delicious, even after hours on the set. Trust me, it’s a heck of a surprise what goes into it.

Photo: J Edwards & C Peters

With Denise Vivaldo and coauthor Cindie Flannigan’s help, readers find out how to get started, how to create a business plan, what equipment is needed, how to find clients, tips to staying successful in the business, and–most importantly–how to craft and style food (and products that appear to be food) so it all looks delicious from every angle. You may never look at an ice cream sundae on TV or in a magazine the same way again.

Whether for food blogs, television, books, magazines, movies, menus, or advertising, food stylists and photographers learn to paste, plate, tweak, and arrange so the dish becomes less a bit of food and more the work of an artisan. Consider white Poligrip Denture Cream, heat gun, and Scothcard as your new BFF’s.

Photo: C Peters

This paperback second edition of The Food Stylist’s Handbook has been fully updated and revised to help current culinary experts, home chefs, bloggers, and food photographers understand how to make every picture tell a mouth-watering story. I promise you will be engaged, inspired and definitely surprised how a dish goes from boor to bling.

Photo: J Pennington


Ready to give it a try? Here’s a recipe on how to make an ice cream sundae using fake ice cream. When made up this recipe looks just like the real thing. (Pg. 268)


Tools & Ingredients

  • Traditional ice cream scoops, heavy duty in the size desired
  • 1 cup vegetable shortening
  • 2 pounds powdered (confectioners’) sugar
  • 2 teaspoons corn starch
  • Food coloring

Making It

  1. Use a stand mixer with a paddle attachment
  2. Beat together 1 cup shortening and 1 cup powdered (confectioners’) sugar at low speed until combined. Add the rest of the powdered sugar very gradually at low speed until mixture has the texture of Play-Doh.  Add cornstarch and continue beating for at least 10 minutes on medium-low speed.  During this time, add food coloring as necessary. Always add food coloring in a small amount and allow it to be completely mixed into the fake ice cream before adding more.
  3. Place the mixture on a work surface and knead briefly. If the mixture doesn’t come out easily out of the scoop, knead in a teaspoon more of cornstarch. If too wet, knead in 2 tablespoons of powdered sugar.

To find out how to scoop fake ice cream, style it or use other fake ice cream alternatives, purchase the book and turn to page 270-271.  The fake sorbet recipe is killer.  Just sayin’.


Photo: A Kissam


Denise and Cindiedie teach food styling classes across the US at many venues around the world.  To see more of their work and class schedule visit them at

A copy of this book was provided by the authors for review purposes, but in no way influenced the review.
Buy this book : The Food Stylist’s Handbook

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