Bio & Contact

November 20, 2011 · 39 comments


My name is Irvin Lin and I’m a writer, recipe developer, designer, photographer and self-taught baker. I went to school for painting and English lit, and immediately realized that I had no actual “real world skills” when I graduated. Luckily, while working at an alternative non-profit art gallery in St. Louis, I started to design some of the in-house printed calendar of events and brochures. During that time I took some classes on graphic design and eventually moved out to San Francisco just in time for the dot-com bust 13 years ago (ahhh…the days of web 1.0).

Of course, at the same time I was designing, I was also baking. I’ve been baking since I was 9 years old, constantly making cookies and cakes whenever I could. The magic that comes from putting together seemingly random raw ingredients and creating delightful treats still astonishes me to this day. As I moved from job to job, the one constant I had was that I would bake whenever I had a chance.

As this blog took off, and I started to get more freelance design projects and food writing gigs, I took a leap of faith in September of 2010 and finally quit my day joy where I worked as a senior designer for a shop that specialized in restaurant and retail design. Ultimately that particular place wasn’t a good fit and I’m looking forward to where life takes me next.

As of this moment, I’m happy baking up a storm, writing this blog and patching together a living via numerous freelance gigs, whether it’s freelance food writing, designing for small artisan food companies and blogs, recipe developing projects, a random desert pop-up selling contraband baked goods, and occasionally working with brands. Some would call me a jack of all trades, but I’d just like to think of myself as well rounded.

I’ve spoken at a few blogging conferences, including BlogHer Food 2011, where I co-lead a session on branding/design for food bloggers and moderated a session on bring blogs to the mobile space. I also spoke at the 3rd Annual Foodbuzz Fest on social networking and the importance of social media for bloggers. I’ve had the honor of judging a number of food competitions, including the Taste TV Chocolate Salon, the 18 Reasons DIY Crazy Dessert competition and the Eat Real Festival: Jams, Preserves & Marmalade category. I also co-host the 18 Reasons DIY Dessert Quarterly events.

I’ve written or contributed work to the US MasterChef magazine, Blackboard Eats, SF Weekly’s SFoodie Blog, Bay Area Bites, Huffington Post and Rama Tours/Crimson Bamboo. I’ve developed recipes for Attune Foods, Alexia Foods, and Peanut Butter & Co. If you’d like to learn more about my freelance writing, receive samples of my professional work or are looking for a a recipe developer please feel free to email me.

If you’d like to learn more about my graphic design skill set, feel free to visit my portfolio site at I’ve worked with some big name brands, including Ben & Jerry’s, IHOP, Wendy’s, Quiznos, as well as smaller artisan companies.

I do occasionally work with brands that I believe in. I always disclose to my readers when I do this. If you would like to discuss building a relationship with me, feel free to email me at eatthelove {at} gmail {dot} com and let’s start a dialogue. I’m happy to send you a media kit.

Finally, if you’d like to connect with me outside of this blog or email, feel free to follow me on Twitter, Facebook or Google+. Just be forewarned I social network a whole heck of a lot. This may explain why my Klout score is a ridiculous 57.

{ 39 comments… read them below or add one }

Brian M. March 26, 2012 at 6:39 pm


Hi there, been following your blog for a while- I’m a baker in training. I’ll be visiting SF this weekend and will be at Tartine probably every day (my arms start sweating when I walk in–from the sheer sugar excitement). Any other SF bakery recommendations?

Thanks – Brian


Irvin March 26, 2012 at 7:14 pm

I just emailed you. Enjoy!


pawdua July 16, 2012 at 7:06 pm

Het, just have to ask? What high school did you go to? Just kidding, I love st. Louisbecause it ‘s where I grew up and I have family here, but we lived in other states for a little over a decade and I know there’s some awesome places out there. SF is one of the places on my list so maybe I’ll can bring some gooey butter cake or toasted Rav if I ev make it out.


Rebekah November 8, 2012 at 6:12 am

Hi Irvin! I am really enjoying your blog…so much so that I nominated you for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award. You can see it here:


Mark June 5, 2013 at 11:10 am

Dear Mr. Lin:

I am seeking your advice as a successful food blogger. My friend and I are starting an online magazine on food bloggers called EZGourmet. The idea is to highlight food bloggers, and others doing well to promote high quality food and drink. Your blog is truly one of the best I have seen. Loaded with content, relevant information and it is personal. Simply fantastic.

My question to you is this: I am looking for bloggers to submit posts to us for the magazine and I am finding resistance. I know bloggers get a lot of requests for content, but my goal is to help promote them, expose them to people and markets they normally would not get in front of.

Since you are my target market, what would motivate you to supply us with content?
We are in start-up mode right now, so funds are tight. We cannot offer to pay content providers at this time, maybe later, I hope so. The goal is to promote the entire food blogging and Foodie market.

You can call me anytime or email me. I appreciate your time.

Mark Kennedy


Gurgling Belly June 23, 2013 at 2:24 pm

Hi Irvin–love your blog! The Banana and Green Tea Milk Chocolate muffins are so ono! I bake this regularly now as they’re not too sweet and has such a nice complexity to it. An excellent breakfast treat! The reason I write to you today is because I’ve been trying to click into the Strawberry Buttercream Frosted Cupcakes for awhile now but there’s something wrong with the link. I kept thinking it’ll get fixed but today, I decided to write to you because I’ll be going to a strawberry themed barbeque and would like to try this. Can you please fix the link? Many thanks!


Renee July 7, 2013 at 3:09 pm

How awesome — I happened upon your blog looking at recipes for pineapple cakes and discovered that you’re also a graphic designer (I am also a Chinese designer)! Will definitely be following your blog for recipes and your designs for inspiration!


Surabhi October 13, 2013 at 7:35 am

I’m pretty much on the same journey as you Irvin… It’s amazing to read your bio (success story) as it gives me a lot of hope that becoming a successful writer and food blogger is possible.


Carrie Kommers December 2, 2013 at 2:52 pm

Hi Irvin,

My name is Carrie Kommers and I’m a culinary marketing consultant based in the LA area.

I’m working on the upcoming launch of a new food/photography app called NAPK-IN (think: “Instagram for food”) and am reaching out because we are very interested in getting you involved in the Beta process. We would compensate you for your time.

Would you be open to providing a direct email so I can send you some information?

Thank you!
Carrie Kommers
[email protected]


Sergio Beristain February 28, 2014 at 7:48 am

Hi Irvin, my name is Sergio, from Toronto. I just want to say hello, I came accross your blog a few days ago and I found it really interesting, inspiring and attractive. I love the way you write, I appreciate the advice you share with your followers. I’m preparing myself to start my own blog. It is not exactly about food; its about lifestyle but there will be the occasional food item. I know nothing about blogging but I can see myself enjoying it, so far, all I have is my Instagram Fueltheevolution which is totally random stuff, anyway
Have a great day. Greetings from Toronto


piec kominkowy ceny April 1, 2014 at 2:17 pm

I love your blog.. very nice colors & theme. Did you create this
website yourself or did you hire someone to do it for you?

Plz respond as I’m looking to design my own blog and would like to find out where u got this from.

thanks a lot


Lucy Marcello April 2, 2014 at 5:35 pm

Hello Irvin,
I loved reading about your advise on how to start a food blog. You had me intrigued and laughing. I’ve been baking since I could turn the oven on. Growing up in a huge family, we all had different interests, talents and mine seemed to be playing in the kitchen or playing the piano. My colleagues keep telling me to open up a bakery but not sure I want to commit to something like that. Instead, I’d rather write about the fabulous food I can make, open up a cute little once in a while pop-up cafe in my apartment and you-tube my baking and cooking talents. Not sure how to go about all these dreams I have. I live in Chicago and could use a little advise on where do I begin. I’d love to start up a blog and so any other advise would be oh so appreciated.


Barclay Pittard April 6, 2014 at 2:33 pm

Looking for a “KFC” recipe and found your non-frying version. Started reading more and love your style! Great wit and greater recipes. You could almost start another blog of just no word recipes. I will definitely be following your blog, you put a little sunshine into cooking! Thanx. Barclay.


claudia April 15, 2014 at 5:34 am

Hi, Irwin!
I’ve been reading your blog for awhile, and love getting blown away from time to time by your delightfully unique flavor combinations. I’ve been going back through your old blogs and can’t tell you how much I’m enjoying getting to know you (and AJ) a little better. You seem like a genuinely nice guy. So I had to write. I just read your post about ‘A Fund for Jennie’ and I can’t believe some of the negative comments. You really didn’t deserve that. I’m sure you know that. But I just had to say it.
I’m probably around your Mom’s age, and it’s with that sort of ‘Mom energy’ that I say how pleased I am to know you.


Matthias April 25, 2014 at 3:05 am


My name is Matthias and I write to you from Marfeel. We have just launched a new advertising program and would like to find out, if you would like to participate with EATTHELOVE. In our work with publishers and content creators we reach higher advertising revenues and a better reading experience on mobile devices. We have already turned your website into a new reading experience. You can access it with your tablet or smartphone.

Through our partnership we are trying to solve two important issues for you:

1. The appearance of websites on tablet and smartphone is a growing concern, because audience on mobile devices is rapidly increasing and so are their expectations in terms of design and usability. With Marfeel you transform your website into a magazine-like experience at the click of a button. The result is a webapp of your site with an intuitive user interface that, in average, increases readingtimes by 5x and social sharing by 4x!

2. The monetization of mobile inventory is difficult. CPM rates are low and many ad-networks leave ad spaces un-filled, what makes effective CPMs even lower.We can offer you our web-app completely for free and even pay you for advertising that we provide you with in our solution! How? Due to the combined size of our newspaper and blog clients, we have been able to negotiate optimal advertising terms with 20,000+ ad networks.

If you would like to learn more, write me an e-mail or visit us on!

I am looking forward to your feedback,



Nancy Lynn Jarvis April 27, 2014 at 12:55 pm

I’m putting together a cookbook of recipes submitted by (last count) 112 cozy mystery writers. Recipes are associated with their mysteries . Any way to get a spot on your blog?


Brandon Ellis May 28, 2014 at 12:47 am

My name is Brandon Ellis and I write to you from .We have
launched a new website which offers foodies a unique way to enjoy fresh food
from local eateries and Restaurants .Would like to discuss in detail .Please
let me know your contact information.

Brandon Ellis



Extra Virgin June 12, 2014 at 9:47 am

hello, we would like to know if we can collaborate with your blog.

Also we do have one:


jacqueline July 10, 2014 at 12:58 pm

Hi Jack,

My son wants me to make your delicious looking “hostess” cupcake cake.

I have tried making cake from scratch and have had no luck. Would a betty crocker or such cake mix work?

Thank you,


Irvin July 12, 2014 at 9:46 pm

Hi Jacqueline,
You can try making it with a cake mix but some of the cake mixes are pretty tender, and don’t quite hold up. That particular cake is a little more “durable” so it can hold up to the cutting and filling.

I’m not well versed in the different types of cake mixes so I can’t really tell you which one to use or which one not to use. But you can certainly try and see if! I just can’t guarantee that it will work. Please do come back and leave a comment on the recipe blog posts to let me know if it works out though! Or you can try my recipe with my cake from scratch. It’s fairly foolproof (I think) and I haven’t had any issues with it! But I totally understand how everyone is different…


dheeraj khanna July 13, 2014 at 12:36 am

Very usefull

regards .



Maty Ann November 2, 2014 at 6:47 am

Hi Irvin!

I love your blog! I have a question….what program do you use to put text on your photos? I don’t mean a watermark. I watched your video on doing the watermark in lightroom. I mean the title of the recipe. Thanks!
Mary Ann


Irvin November 3, 2014 at 1:37 pm

Hi Mary Ann. I’m a professional graphic designer as well as a recipe developer, writer and photographer. I use Adobe Illustrator to add text to my images. It’s not the most user friendly so I usually don’t recommend it to folks who don’t have a design background.


yoan salesses November 5, 2014 at 9:00 am

Introducing to you my facebook page :

I am a french guy 25 years old and i would like to show what i invented.
This last year, i’ve been working hard to create the first 3D cake mold that allow you to bake perfect 3D cake.

I am looking for your suggestions and comments.

Thank you and have a good day



Ashleigh Norton February 26, 2015 at 6:07 pm

My name is Ashleigh Norton and I’m currently in the process of doing my research project assessment. Due to the love I have for food I decided to create a question revolved around online cooking blogs and cookbooks. My big questions is: Are cookbooks the thing of the past? Are food blogs and cooking websites becoming the new house hold cookbooks?

From this question I have created topic questions specifically looking at online food blogs. Your response would help me gain a stronger understanding of the changing world of advertisement of food production.

As you have created this food blog do you follow a particular structure or is it swapping and changing constantly?

How would you compare a cookbook to a online food blog/website?

Do you believe online food blogs are becoming more relied on then printed cookbooks?

In your personal opinion, do you believe online food blogs are impacting the sales of cookbooks? Is the increase of food blogs, Instagram accounts giving society a new way of accessing recipe ideas without physically owning a cookbook?

If your responses are reliable to my question would you feel comfortable with me using you personally as a reference for evidence?

I really hope you have the time to respond to my questions and I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Kind regards Ashleigh Norton 🙂


Bonnie Groessl May 6, 2015 at 12:33 pm

Dear Irvin,

Wow, you have a very impressive website! We introduced a product last fall that has been doing quite well on Amazon (sold out during December!) that you might like to try out. It’s a 4-pack set of thin, silicone baking mats. But before you roll your eyes and say, “I’ve seen a zillion of these,” let me tell you a little more.

These are not the thick, rubbery version that are so common; rather, these are very thin, contain no fiberglass and can be trimmed to fit any size pan, cookie sheet, etc. We absolutely love them in our kitchen. The heat distribution is much more even, clean-up is easy with soap and water, and we even use them to bake pizzas. The crusts are perfect!

We’d be happy to send you a package if you’d like to try them out. You can search Amazon for Healthy Chef Tools to read the reviews, and of course we’d be happy to provide you with any images, additional information, etc., you might need. Thanks, and have a great day!

– Mike and Bonnie


Holly Flynn June 12, 2015 at 8:56 am

Hi there,
I work for Love Productions USA and we are currently looking for amateur bakers, to take part in the television series, The Great Holiday Baking Show. It would be very much appreciated if you could help us spread the word.

Or, if you or someone you know is a great non-professional baker (doesn’t make all their income from baking) , then please do visit our website where you can download the application form
Thanks very much for your help,
The Great Holiday Baking Show Team


Ruth Tang August 31, 2015 at 11:44 am

Hi Irvin! Love your blog and would like to invite you to attend a tasting benefit coming up in September. It will feature over 45 of the best eats and drinks in the city, and net ticket proceeds are donated to an established nonprofit in SF doing amazing work. Take a look at our site and let me know if you have any questions or interest. 🙂


Elle @ Only Taste Matters October 9, 2015 at 3:24 pm

Happy Birthday birthday twin! You are my muse!


Becky Bonar October 13, 2015 at 9:14 am

Just came across your site while looking for a great pumpkin and chocolate recipe — something to treat myself with for my birthday, which is right after Thanksgiving. Can I make your pumpkin and white chocolate cheesecake bars just as a regular pie? I do love the presentation and its a small group coming. Would you recommend doing this in a tart pan or a springform?

Many thanks,
Becky B


Gary Cusworth February 13, 2016 at 10:32 am

Good morning Irvin,
I wanted to make your Mole Chicken Wings /Tequila Lime
I have a question; are the Pasilla, and Guajillo chilies fresh or dried. I found fresh Pasilla and dried Pasilla, but I could only find dried Guajillo chilies.
Thx, and keep up the good work.
BTW One of my four daughters lives in Santa Barbara. She is an interior designer and has designed restaurants in S.B It sounds like the same thing you used to do.
Good luck


Judy Close March 4, 2016 at 5:07 pm

I noticed you mentioned that you like pulses. Check out the “pulse”
website thanks to the UN, 2016 is the year of the pulses.


Lyndsey Williams March 24, 2016 at 9:45 am

Hi Irvin,

I hope this email finds you well! I’m reaching on behalf of a major Food and Beverage (CPG) company about an exciting Summer program. We would love to work you with on creating simple yet interesting “hacks” in the food and recipe category. We believe that you would be a great fit for this program because our your unique content and vibrant following!

This would be a multi-post program running from late April through late July. Let me provide a few more details what we are asking for:

Approximately 3 hacks (using our product) created by April 18th
Approximately 3 blog posts about the hack posted May – July
2-4 pins per hack hosted on Pinterest May – July

It’s possible that cross-promotion of our company’s Pinterest account will be expected within the posts. I would love to know your initial availability and interest by this weekend.

I look forward to hearing back!



Kim June 4, 2016 at 9:34 am

Hello! I’ve been following your blog for ages. A while back you posted about a one week cooking course you took. I can’t find the original post. Where did you take the class? I’m interested in attending. Thanks so much!


Irvin June 4, 2016 at 7:29 pm

Hi Kim,

So you’re probably talking about my classes at Le Cordon Bleu in San Francisco. Unfortunately they don’t do that program anymore. But you should look into classes at the San Francisco Cooking School. I took a three day laminated dough intensive class there and it was great. Check out their website for a schedule of their classes!


carol Fultz August 20, 2016 at 6:55 am

I .tried your recipe for Korean Fried Chicken.For anyone thinking of trying this , DON,T .I agree it looked good in the photo.The egg white just made the skin tough and the Gochujang paste I can only describe as too hot to eat .I followed the recipe and used 1/4 cup.Maybe 1 or at most 2 tsp would be ample.
So I recommend using those quantities and adding more if needed


steve valentine February 13, 2017 at 1:00 pm

Hi Irvine,

Working on a cool product launch in SFO next week, would love you to attend demo for the Rotimatic. Sent an email but bounced back.

Please reach out so we can forward you the info.

Many thanks,



Paige Nordeen May 16, 2017 at 3:43 pm

The Fourth Annual Pop-Up Bubblyfest is returning to the heart of San Francisco on Sunday, May 21st and we’d like to extend a special invitation for you and a guest to go… on us! You’ll enjoy sampling unlimited tastes of the best champagne and sparkling wines from around the world. You can also attend seminars to learn from the rock stars of bubbly, take a sneak peek at new vintages, gasp at saber demos and engage in one-on-one experiences with esteemed winemakers and sommeliers.

Our pass will allow you and a guest full access to the fest, with a souvenir champagne glass, which you can take to over 60 participating winemakers’ booths to capture your fill of bubbly tastings! Light hors d’oeuvres will sate your appetite as you quench your thirst for the bubbly and enjoy the cork-popping fun of Pop-Up Bubblyfest!
Please let us know as soon as possible if you are able to attend. Tickets are extremely limited, so we look forward to hearing from you soon! For more information, please click here.

We are excited to help you raise a toast to a fantastic summer at this year’s Pop-Up Bubblyfest San Francisco on Sunday, May 21st!

Paige Nordeen


Ellen June 22, 2017 at 4:40 am

Your cookbook was a gift from Barry L. (formerly of Left Bank Books) in STL and is my favorite ever. Hope you can answer a quick question. I want to bake the peach blueberry coffee cake (pg. 167) with all peaches (I have a ton of fresh peaches). Can I just substitute the 4 cups blueberries in the recipe for 4 cups of peaches or will the added peach water content ruin it without making some other adjustment and if so, what adjustment should I make? Hope to hear back soon, thanks very much, Ellen


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