Linda Johnson Larsen


Linda Johnson Larsen is a home economist, a journalist, and an author with more than 30 years of experience developing and testing recipes. She holds a B.A. degree in Biology from St. Olaf College and a B.S. degree in Food Science and Nutrition with High Distinction from the University of Minnesota.


Food stylist,Recipe Developer


  • St. Olaf College: B.A. Degree in Biology
  • University of Minnesota: B.S. Degree in Food Science and Nutrition

Affiliations and Memberships

  • Bake-Off Staff at Pillsbury

Detailed Experience

Food Blogger and Editor

Linda's personal blog is called Linda's Best Recipes. She has created and tested recipes for Pillsbury and Malt-O-Meal since 1987. She has also written articles for Woman's Day magazine, and her recipes have appeared in Quick and Simple magazine and First magazine. Linda was the Busy Cooks Guide for from 2002 to 2017 and wrote thousands of recipes and hundreds of cooking tutorials. She is the editor of Food Poisoning Bulletin, a Google News site.

Cookbook Author

Linda is the author of 37 books, including:

  • The Complete Air Fryer Cookbook
  • Gluten-Free Baking for Dummies
  • Eating Clean for Dummies
  • The Big Book of Low-Sodium Recipes
  • The Starter Cook
  • The Everything Food Allergy Cookbook
  • Joyce Lamont's Favorite Minnesota Recipes & Radio Memories
  • Knack Quick and Easy Cooking
  • Knack Fabulous Desserts
  • The Everything Almost Homemade Cookbook

Pillsbury Bake-Off Official

Linda was a member of the Bake-Off Staff at Pillsbury seven times. She was also Manager of the Bake-Off Search Team in 1992 and Manager of Internet Recipe Search in 2000.

Linda also developed original recipes, conducted tolerance tests, presented recipes to taste panels, and styled food for photography in Pillsbury's test kitchens.

Malt-O-Meal Recipe Developer

Linda has also worked for Malt-O-Meal. She developed quick-and-easy recipes and held cooking demonstrations for health food fairs.

Specialized Cooking Expertise

Linda is an expert on quick-cooking, gluten-free cooking, food for special diets, and slow cooker cooking.

Quick Cooking

While working for the former, Linda created thousands of recipes that used anywhere from two to five ingredients, along with recipes that could be made in anywhere from five to 30 minutes from start to finish. She specialized in creating recipes that started with one specific common pantry ingredient so her readers could make meals with easily accessible foods. Linda loves to take a complicated recipe and make it simpler so anyone can make it. She has written four cookbooks focusing on quick cooking.

Gluten-Free Food

Linda wrote the book Gluten-Free Baking for Dummies and is an expert on the development of gluten-free flour combinations for use in baking and cooking. She understands the ins and outs of gluten-free baking and is especially proud of her gluten-free brownie recipe.

Food for Special Diets

Linda specializes in diets focusing on food allergies, low sodium recipes, vegetarian cuisine, and low-fat foods. She is also an expert in clean eating and Paleo diets.

Linda understands the critical needs of people who must avoid certain foods, and she works to make her specialized recipes delicious and simple to make. She has written cookbooks about:

  • Recipes for people with food allergies
  • Healthy cooking for parties
  • Vegetarian foods
  • Low-sodium diets
  • Eating clean
  • Paleo
  • Low-fat foods

Slow Cooker Cooking

Linda owns seven slow cookers and uses them to develop delicious and easy recipes for her readers. She focuses on healthy slow cooker recipes with short preparation time and tracks the changes manufacturers have made in this appliance over the years. She has written six slow cooker cookbooks.

Food Safety

As editor of Food Poisoning Bulletin, Linda investigates and writes about foodborne illness outbreaks, including the nationwide I.M. Healthy SoyNut Butter E. coli O157:H7 outbreak and the Listeria monocytogenes outbreak linked to Dole packaged salads. She also keeps her readers informed about food and product recalls and offers advice about keeping food safe and wholesome in the kitchen.

Connect With Linda Johnson Larson

If you'd like to discuss a writing project with Linda or just learn more about her work, you can connect with her on LinkedIn.