10 great food publications to pitch
Freelancers often tell me they are worried about the future of publishing (and hence their future as a writer). But I have seen so many opportunities out there to get your writing published and in many cases, get well paid for what you write.
If you are looking to write about food, it can be tough to know which publications accept freelance submissions, so I’ve put together a list of 10 food magazines or websites you can pitch to. I've put a link to their contributor guidelines where I could find them.
And, even better, the majority have pretty decent pay rates.
10 great food publications to pitch
Wondering how to get into food writing? Give these publications a go.
This is only a tiny taste of the kinds of consumer publications you can write for if you want to make food one of your niches. There are lots of places that will pay you $25 for 800 words, but if you want to earn a living as a freelance writer (and earn what you are worth), I’d use those places as stepping stones to publish some work, get a byline and then get out of there and start pitching to the kind of publications below.
Every story has a food angle. It may sound like a big call, but if you are a writer keen to write articles that offer deep and quirky insights, but your interests or expertise sit outside the world of food, submitting a pitch or query letter to Eater may be just the thing for you.
Food unites us all and Eater’s broad range of progressive reported stories range from the past, present and future of melted cheese to the American history of foie gras to the perks of being a regular.
Pay: tends to be by project, with features running to 3,000 words or more and rates beginning in the low thousands (USD).
Comprehensive pitch guidelines for Eater can be found here
Launched originally in 1994 as a punk magazine, VICE now operates in 35 countries.
Munchies is the food platform for VICE and they regularly use established and newer freelance writers for their witty, original features on food.
Topics range from in-depth social commentary, interviews, opinion pieces and first-person experiences. Think subjects like how smuggling food through the airport is harder than smuggling cocaine or how sushi as we know it will be wiped out by 2050.
Pay: up to 40c/word (USD) if you have experience and are happy to negotiate.
Brief submission guidelines are available here
Who doesn’t love breakfast? It would be hard to find a team more devoted to breakfast, bunch and the culture surrounding it than those at Extra Crispy. If you’ve got a new take on a traditional breakfast favourite or something totally off the wall, this is the place for you to pitch.
Neatly sectioned into culture, food and drink, the website is easy to navigate and even easier to spend hours down various rabbit holes reading about how bubble tea became an American obsession or life as a professional bacon critic.
Pay: 50c/word (USD).
Guidelines for contributors can be found here
Saveur is one of the best known and loved American magazines. It focuses on gourmet food and wine for passionate home cooks. There are lots of opportunities for freelance writers to pitch to Saveur – they use up to 15 contributors per issue. Evergreen stories, meals to remember and food throughout the world are favourite themes. Trend or celebrity-driven articles are definitely not what this publication is about.
Pay: The fabled $1/word (USD)
The pitch guidelines state they are looking for culinary adventurers. It’s also worth noting that the pay rates are different for articles published on the web (they start at $150 per article) as opposed to in print.
What I love about Eating Well is that they make it easy for freelance writers to send a pitch or a query letter. Their comprehensive writers' guidelines are super helpful and they point out which sections of the publication are freelancer friendly. It makes you wonder why other publications don't follow their example.
They welcome ideas from new writers, but suggest that you pitch to the FOB (Front of Book) sections first. "Consider it an audition for a longer piece," say their guidelines. Think healthy and delicious trends, sustainable agriculture and reports on recent research.
Pay: Up to $1/word (USD)
One of Australia’s most popular food publications, delicious. dives deep into food trends, travel, health and eating out. There are opportunities to pitch to the monthly magazine, online or to the newspaper lift out in every Sunday’s Herald-Sun or The Sunday Telegraph.
Pay: 80c/word (AUD)
Another one of Australia’s popular food and travel publications, Gourmet Traveller prides itself on being the continent's premier food magazine. The publication focuses heavily on hot new restaurants, involved recipes (think ingredients which require specialist shops or starting a few days before you want to serve the dish) and trending foodie destinations. If you’ve got a story idea that combines food and luxury, it’s worth trying your luck here.
Pay: from 70c/word (AUD)
Although it is part of Fairfax’s crumbling empire, Good Food (formerly known as Epicure) is a staple in many Australian households for people wanting to read about new café or restaurant openings, the top 5 places to eat or drink in a particular location or in-depth reports on specific trends. I have a soft spot for Good Food, as my first food article ever was published here.
Pay: 50c/word for print, less for online
A UK consumer magazine published monthly, Food and Travel tends to focus on international food and travel for its affluent readers. There are lots of opportunities for contributors – with around 10 to 15 articles being written by freelancers in each issue.
TIP: Pitching to the FOB (Front of Book) sections of magazines can be a good starting point if you are looking to break into food writing
Are you doing any food writing? If so, would you add any food publications to this list?