These Black Culinary Masters Use Food to Show People the World

Food inspired by black culture is the basis of some of the most creative recipes of the century. Many millennial and Gen Z chefs have used social media to propel their careers.

These culinary masters not only create new flavors and recipes, but also use food to introduce people to the world. If you can’t travel to a destination, here are some Black chefs who will take your taste buds to a new world.

Hélène Faust

Registered nurse at a major children’s hospital in New York, Caribbean culinary expert and mother Helena Faustin is a queen of island cuisine. Known on Instagram as @thatnursecancook, Faustin is dedicated to providing recipes and cooking guides to create your favorite Caribbean delights right at home. From jerk fries to ackee and saltfish fritters, Faustin juggles work and home life while inviting her followers into her kitchen while she prepares meals for her family.

Juwan rice

Juwan Rice started cooking at the age of 6 alongside his grandmother. Today, Chef JR is taking the world by storm as he prepares to open his cutting-edge new restaurant Rated Test. At age 14, he opened his private restaurant and catering business JR Gourmet. Inspired by the times Rice spent cooking with his grandmother, Chef JR’s style covers a wide range of cuisines. Its goal is to fuse different cultures and cuisines to create a completely new flavor. From West African cuisine to Japanese infusions, Chef JR’s culinary experimentation is the result of a love of food passed down through generations of Black Americans.

Kimberly Nichols

Best known on IG as @kimmyskreations.1, Kimberly Nichols has been wowing people with her culinary mastery for years. She is the pioneer of some of the hottest food recipes on social media. If you follow Nichols, you know there’s not much she can do. Nichols’ creative talent in the kitchen brings elements from all corners of the African diaspora to the stove. Everything she cooks has a touch of Black American cuisine, reinforcing the Black influence in popularized food culture. Whether baking, sautéing, or creating a tasty shake, Nichols has all the ingredients for many meals that will transport your taste buds from coast to coast.

David Kirkland

Using a farm-to-table culinary approach, Turn STL restaurant executive chef and owner David Kirkland has always felt the music in food. His emergence from rhythm and culinary arts resulted in a restaurant where music and food flow freely. Its menu items embrace diversity and fun, using music to further elevate its customers’ dining experience. Drawing on his experiences in San Francisco and his years living in the Midwest, Kirkland has honed his own personal style of transforming food through music.

Tolu Erogbogbo

Tolu Erogbogbo mixes contemporary Nigerian cuisine with Californian west coast vibes. For a while, Chef Eros offered cohesive West African fine dining through a pop-up experience. Now, travelers have regular access to his menu at his restaurant, Ilé Bistro at the Citizen Public Market in Los Angeles. Chef Eros strives for unity and culinary harmony. He doesn’t care which country is better. Instead, it combines preparation methods and ingredients from various nations in Africa.

Maria Russell

Known for her small-bite style of cooking, Mariya Russell is a culinary force. In 2020, Russell became the first black woman to earn the Michelin star. This honor signified her as a master of distinct flavors at Chicago’s Kumiko Bar and its sister restaurant, Kikko. Russell’s style is rare and seemingly perfect. It’s almost delicate, serving luxurious bites of Japanese cuisine that take guests to the mountaintops of East Asia.

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