There comes a time in everyone’s life where you realize a new passion. For me, it was in my early twenties, working an office job, obsessing about what to eat every day for lunch. I realized I liked thinking about food so much that I wanted to learn more about it. I wanted to cook more. So I thought, maybe, I wanted to start a food blog? That’s how my own site, Food Loves Writing, came to be. This was in 2008, in the early stages of the blog craze. Yet, even now, food blogs keep growing. New ones launch every day. If you’ve been thinking about starting a food blog and wondering where to start, this post is for you.
Why Starting a Food Blog Matters
People love to talk about how the blog world is oversaturated, but here’s the truth: starting a blog is just as valuable as any other passion project. By starting a food blog, you start a project fueled by your own interests and enjoyment. You get to celebrate something you love. Along the way, you may be surprised at all you learn. Personally, food blogging has given me:
- 8 years of practice following, testing, creating and sharing recipes
- A collection of tried-and-tested meals I vetted myself
- Connection with other food writers and passionate eaters
- Friendships with people in my own hometown and far beyond it (I even met my husband through blogs!)
- Practice in personal narrative
- New photography and editing skills
- Growing HTML skills
- New freelance photography, recipe-development and writing projects
- The chance to publish a cookbook
- The chance to travel on sponsored trips
- Exposure to a wealth of new ingredients and food ideas
- The gift of sticking with one project with consistency
What could starting a food blog give you? Who knows. But if there’s something tugging at you to do it, I’d suggest you listen.
How to Go about Starting a Food Blog
When you know you want to start a blog, your next question will probably be the same question every blogger asks before he or she starts. How? How do I start a blog? What do I need to do? Do I need web-design skills? Is this going to be complicated? The honest answer is you can do it. If you can follow a recipe (and you can!), you can start a food blog. You can start any blog. Building a website is as easy as following a few steps:
1. Pick a Name and a Host.
Let’s be honest, picking a name isn’t easy. When I was pregnant with my son, I obsessed about potential name choices for almost the full nine months. (He’s Rocco now, by the way.) Take your time, explore ideas, bounce names off of friends and see what sticks. When you know what you want to call your site, you need to pick a host. A host is just a company that sort of handles putting your site online. I recommend Bluehost. Bluehost is who I went with when I started my site. It’s easy to use, gives you a free domain the first year and has online customer service. You can sign up with Bluehost through my affiliate link here: http://www.bluehost.com/track/foodloves.
2. Pick a Platform.
There are lots of different Web platforms available. I like WordPress. It’s free, it’s customizable and it’s loaded with cool theme options on the Web. To use WordPress, log in to your Bluehost dashboard, click the “hosting” tab on the top and scroll down to the button that says “install WordPress.” Click it. Boom.
Now’s the fun (and also hard) part. You get to design your site. Yay! Now that you’ve got WordPress installed, you’ll see that when you go to your domain (i.e., mine is foodloveswriting.com), you see something. Your site is active. Now it just needs your loving touch. You can shop around for WordPress themes online. There are thousands. Tim and I like the Divi theme because it makes almost any design possible. Follow the Divi tutorial and play around. You’re ready to blog!
The thing about staring a food blog is it’s an adventure. You get to share your thoughts and recipes in the voice that is uniquely yours. How will the world benefit from the beauty you share with it? It’s up to you to find out.
Rooting for you!