Described by The Times as "the most talented new cookbook writer of a generation", Ella Risbridger was born in London in 1992.
Her bestselling debut, Midnight Chicken (& Other Recipes Worth Living For), was described by Nigella Lawson as “a manual for living and a declaration of hope”. A genre-defying blend of memoir, watercolours and recipes, this story of recovery through food was an Amazon Top 100 bestseller in hardback, a Waterstones bestseller in paperback, and won Cookbook of the Year at the Guild of Foodwriters Awards 2020. It was a Book of The Year 2019 in the Daily Mail, the Washington Post, the I, BBC Good Food Magazine, Radio 4’s The Food Programme and the Sunday Times. Praised by Dolly Alderton, James Rebanks, Nigel Slater, Diana Henry and Rukmini Iyer (among many more), it was also selected in the New York Times as a “cookbook you need for 2020”.
The follow-up, The Year Of Miracles (recipes about love + grief + growing things), will be published in May 2022, and has garnered pre-publication praise from Nigel Slater ("a work of quiet genius"), Nigella Lawson ("makes deliciousness seem like an act of compassion") and Diana Henry ("a book full of wisdom").
Ella Risbridger is also a children’s author; columnist; journalist; poetry expert, anthologiser and editor.
Her game-changing poetry anthology for adults, Set Me On Fire: A Poem For Every Feeling (Picador, 2019), was described by the Guardian as “a lucky dip of the best sort”, and by the Daily Mail as “fun and refreshing… a generous gift to the reader”. Risbridger will follow this with a collection for children, And Everything Will Be Glad To See You, in October 2022 (Nosy Crow).
Her children’s fiction debut, The Secret Detectives (Nosy Crow, 2021), was a WHSmith bestseller, and was praised by Kiran Millwood Hargrave, Robin Stevens, and Katherine Woodfine; and will be followed by a second children’s novel in 2023.
She has been profiled in both the Times and the Financial Times; had a weekly column (on grief and beauty) for the Independent and the I; and has written for the Guardian, the Observer, Grazia, Stylist, Waitrose Magazine and many more. Selected essays have been excerpted and reprinted in collections such as In The Kitchen (Daunt, 2020) and The Food Almanac (Pavilion, 2020).
She has made multiple appearances on Radio 4, including on The Food Programme; featured in many podcasts; and is a regular guest on Caroline O’Donoghue’s award-winning Sentimental Garbage.
Under a series of thinly disguised pen-names, she has also written (and ghost-written) several other books; essays; and websites; and is very occasionally available to write your thing for you if you ask nicely and pay well.
Risbridger was accused by the Financial Times of having a “magpie mind”, and she cannot in good conscience disagree.