Molly Watson

Location: San Francisco, CA
Expertise: vegetarian cooking, vegan cooking, plant-based diets

Molly Watson is an award-winning writer and prolific recipe developer. Through the development of thousands of published recipes and three cookbooks, she loves to show how simple techniques and fresh ingredients can make cooking approachable and fun. Molly is a member of two prestigious culinary associations and is a frequent speaker and lecturer around the country. 



In addition to her work for The Spruce Eats, Molly has written for The New York Times, The Washington Post, Cooking Light, Elle, and the San Francisco Chronicle, where she wrote "The Glut," a monthly column on local produce.

She was a regular features contributor to Edible San Francisco and is a former staff food writer at Sunset magazine, where she covered the best the Western U.S. has to offer, from dry-farmed tomatoes to fresh abalone. The rigors of the ​Sunset test kitchen, designed to ensure every recipe worked every time, taught her a lifetime's worth of recipe writing and development skills.

She is a member of both the International Association of Culinary Professionals (​IACP) and the Association of Food Journalists (AFJ).

Molly is a regular conference speaker and lecturer, sharing her love of writing and food with audiences around the country, from guest lectures on the history of the American food system to storytelling workshops for global marketers.


Molly attended Reed College in Portland, Oregon, before getting a graduate degree in French history at Stanford University. She lived in France several times during her studies, and while there, she learned firsthand the culinary strength of a few well-chosen ingredients prepared with care. She finished her degree and headed to culinary school in San Francisco. Since then, she's taken classes in everything from hand-lettering and the accordion to digital publishing and dumpling-making.

Awards and Publications

  • "Should We All Be Vegan?" (Thames & Hudson, 2019).
  • "Bowls!" (Chronicle Books, 2017).
  • "Greens + Grains" (Chronicle Books, 2014).
  • Best Food Writing 2015. "Cooking's Not for Everyone," first published in Edible San Francisco, winter 2015.
  • Best Food Writing 2014. "How to Cook a Turkey," first published on The Dinner Files, November 2013.
  • Edible Communities Best Use of Recipes in Editorial, 2013. Awarded for the feature story "Seasonal Cooking Series, Winter 2012 – Shellfish." The series looked at seasonal cooking through entire food groupings, and in the San Francisco Bay Area, winter is a spectacular time for seafood. The story included recipes like a Winter Crab Louis With Persimmon and Grapefruit, a Cheaters' Cioppino for a quick version of a local classic, and scads of tips for what to do with oysters.
  • Best Food Writing 2013. "A Snail's Tail: Stalking the Original Slow Food in a San Francisco Garden," first published in Edible San Francisco, spring 2013.
  • Eat-Write! Culinary Fellowship, 2012. The Writers' Colony at Dairy Hollow. The Eat-Write! Culinary Fellowship is awarded to an author writing a cookbook or work of fiction or nonfiction that involves a love of food or healthful eating.
  • American Institute of Wine and Food Foundation Award, 2010. A full scholarship to the Greenbrier Professional Food Writers Symposium.
  • Gold Street Press Scholarship, 2008. A scholarship to the Greenbrier Professional Food Writers' Symposium for excellence in recipe writing.
  • "Scrambled Eggs" in "The Bigger the Better the Tighter the Sweater" (Seal Press, 2007).
  • Fulbright Fellow to France, 1996-1997.

About The Spruce

The Spruce, a Dotdash brand, is a new kind of home website offering practical, real-life tips and inspiration to help you create your best home. The Spruce family of brands, including The Spruce, The Spruce Eats, The Spruce Pets, and The Spruce Crafts collectively reach 30 million people each month.

For more than 20 years, Dotdash brands have been helping people find answers, solve problems, and get inspired. We are one of the top-20 largest content publishers on the Internet according to comScore, a leading Internet measurement company, and reach more than 30% of the U.S. population every month. Our brands collectively have won more than 20 industry awards in the last year alone and, most recently, Dotdash was named Publisher of the Year by Digiday, a leading industry publication.

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