Carla Lalli Music
Carla Lalli Music preparing banana bread.jpg
Music in the Bon Appetit test kitchen in 2019
OccupationChef, cookbook author, Youtube personality
EducationBrown University
French Culinary Institute
Culinary career
Television show(s)
  • Back-to-Back Chef
    Making Perfect
    Carla’s Cooking Show
    You Got Snack'd
SpouseFernando Music
RelativesLorenzo Music

Carla Lalli Music is an American chef, cookbook author, and YouTube personality. She was a food editor at large of Bon Appétit and was known for her appearances in videos produced for the magazine's YouTube channel, most notably as the host of Back-to-Back Chef. Music left the magazine in 2020 in response to allegations of racial discrimination on the parts of Bon Appétit and Condé Nast Entertainment.[1]


Music was born to an Italian-American family, where her mother worked as a food critic at New West and as a cookbook editor at Simon & Schuster.[2][3] Music studied at Brown University, where she graduated with a degree in Modern Culture and Media in 1994,[4] and later attended the French Culinary Institute.[2] She worked in food service for over a decade, notably as a line chef and later kitchen manager for Rocco DiSpirito,[2] as the first general manager of Shake Shack,[5] and as an instructor in culinary management at the Institute for Culinary Education.[4] She transitioned to food writing in 2009,[4] and served as an editor for Everyday Food until 2011.[2] Music was hired as a features editor for Bon Appétit that same year, and was later promoted to be the magazine's food director.[5] In January 2020, she moved her role to food editor at large to focus on her 2nd cookbook.[6]

Music first appeared in videos on the Bon Appétit YouTube channel in 2015, and would make regular appearances in recipe preparation videos in the subsequent years.[7] In 2018, Music became the host of Back-to-Back Chef, a web series in which she instructs a celebrity in preparing a dish while facing away from each other and using only verbal instructions.[8] Notable guests on the series have included Natalie Portman,[9] Michael Shannon,[10] and Elizabeth Olsen.[11] The series has been praised for its comedic timing and Music's hosting, with Vulture calling the Back-to-Back Chef "simple, elegant, and absolutely genius."[12] Music was also featured in the series Test Kitchen Talks, From the Test Kitchen, and Making Perfect.[13] In August 2020, two months after the resignation of editor-in-chief Adam Rapoport and the subsequent fallout regarding inequitable pay for staff and contributors of color, several members of the Test Kitchen, including Music, announced they would no longer film videos for the Bon Appétit YouTube channel due to a continued lack of progress in resolving issues at Condé Nast Entertainment.[14][15]

A cookbook by Music, Where Cooking Begins: Uncomplicated Recipes to Make You a Great Cook, was published by Penguin Random House on March 19, 2019. In May 2020, the cookbook earned the 2020 James Beard Foundation Book Award in the category "General".[16] Music announced she was working on a second cookbook in October 2019.[17]

In November 2020, Music launched her own video series called Carla’s Cooking Show which is limited to her Patreon subscribers.[18][19][20] In December 2020, Music launched a new collaborative Instagram Live series with Bon Appétit alumna Molly Baz called You Got Snack'd.[21][19]

Music's second cookbook, That Sounds So Good: 100 Real-Life Recipes for Every Day of the Week, was released in October 2021,[22][23] along with a new corresponding weekly YouTube series. Each weekly episode features Music cooking a recipe from the book.[24]

Personal life

Music resides in Fort Greene, Brooklyn with her husband Fernando Music and two children.[25][26] She is the daughter-in-law of deceased actor Lorenzo Music, who was the original voice of Jim Davis' comic strip character Garfield.



  • Where Cooking Begins: Uncomplicated Recipes to Make You a Great Cook, Penguin Random House, March 19, 2019 (ISBN 9780525573340)
  • That Sounds So Good: 100 Real-Life Recipes for Every Day of the Week: A Cookbook, Penguin Random House, October 19, 2021 (ISBN 9780593138250)[27]

Web shows and series

List of appearances in web shows and series
Year Title Role Notes
August 2017 – December 2019 Back-to-Back Chef Former Food Director, Food Editor at Large 1 season[28][12]
June 2019 – June 2020 Test Kitchen Talks Former Food Director, Food Editor at Large 2 seasons[29]
December 2019 – November 2020 (as contributor) Making Perfect Former Food Director, Food Editor at Large 2 seasons[30]
November 2020 – present Carla’s Cooking Show Herself Ongoing Patreon series[18]
December 2020 – present You Got Snack'd Herself Ongoing Instagram Live series[21]
October 2021 – present That Sounds So Good Herself Ongoing YouTube series[24]


  1. ^ carla lalli music [@lallimusic] (August 12, 2020). "I am leaving Bon Appétit video. I will miss doing something I loved with people I still love. Sharing is caring—see below" (Tweet). Archived from the original on August 12, 2020 – via Twitter.
  2. ^ a b c d Fields, Kelly; Diamond, Kerry (October 4, 2019). "'Can't Get Enough Carla Lalli Music' Transcript". Cherry Bombe. Retrieved October 18, 2019.
  3. ^ Okin, Ariel (October 16, 2017). "IN THE KITCHEN: CARLA LALLI MUSIC". Bonberi. Retrieved October 18, 2019.
  4. ^ a b c "Alumni, Modern Culture and Media". Brown University. Retrieved October 18, 2019.
  5. ^ a b "Get to Know Food Director Carla Lalli Music". Bon Appétit. May 20, 2016. Retrieved October 18, 2019.
  6. ^ Lalli Music, Carla (January 7, 2020). "News you can use: After 8 years in a full-time role, I am now food editor at large for @bonappetit. All love! I'm working on my 2nd cookbook (Clarkson Potter Fall 2021) and decided not to write this one on nights and weekends, which is how It was for Where Cooking Begins..." @lallimusic. Retrieved January 7, 2020.
  7. ^ Music, Carla Lalli (May 19, 2015). Carla Uses a Searzall Torch to Sear Steak. Bon Appetit Video (Series). Retrieved October 18, 2019.
  8. ^ Aggeler, Madeleine (March 29, 2019). "How I Get It Done: Bon Appétit's Food Director Gets Super Competitive at the Gym". The Cut. Retrieved October 18, 2019.
  9. ^ Music, Carla Lalli (June 27, 2018). Natalie Portman Tries to Keep Up With a Professional Chef. Back-to-Back Chef (Series). Retrieved October 18, 2019.
  10. ^ Music, Carla Lalli (July 26, 2019). Michael Shannon Tries to Keep Up With a Professional Chef. Back-to-Back Chef (Series). Retrieved October 18, 2019.
  11. ^ Music, Carla Lalli (September 19, 2018). Elizabeth Olsen Tries to Keep Up With a Professional Chef. Back-to-Back Chef (Series). Retrieved October 18, 2019.
  12. ^ a b Handler, Rachel (January 10, 2019). "I'm Obsessed With This Show Where Celebrities Nervously Cook Elaborate Dishes". Vulture. Retrieved October 18, 2019.
  13. ^ "Bon Appétit Video Series". Retrieved October 21, 2019.
  14. ^ Chan, J. Clara (August 8, 2020). "Bon Appétit Is Sticking to New Standardized Video Pay After 5 Stars Leave Test Kitchen". TheWrap. Retrieved August 10, 2020.
  15. ^ Haasch, Palmer (August 12, 2020). "Bon Appétit personalities Carla Lalli Music and Gaby Melian announced that they're leaving the brand's videos". Insider. Retrieved March 30, 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  16. ^ Burton, Monica (May 27, 2020). "Here Is the Full List of 2020 James Beard Foundation Media Award Winners". Eater. Retrieved May 27, 2020.
  17. ^ "Where Cooking Begins: Uncomplicated Recipes to Make You a Great Cook". Penguin Random House. Retrieved October 18, 2019.
  18. ^ a b "Why Your Favorite Cooking Stars Are Launching Paid Subscriptions". Vice. March 9, 2021. Archived from the original on March 9, 2021. Retrieved March 30, 2021.
  19. ^ a b "Up your snack game with shrimp cocktail and charred broccoli". February 5, 2021. Archived from the original on February 5, 2021. Retrieved March 30, 2021.
  20. ^ "Carla's Cooking Show Trailer". YouTube. Carla Lalli Music. November 17, 2020. Archived from the original on November 18, 2020.
  21. ^ a b Stenberg, Mark (December 31, 2020). "How former Bon Appétit star Molly Baz manages a hectic day running her business, including a new Patreon that accrued thousands of subscribers in its first month". Business Insider. Archived from the original on December 31, 2020. Retrieved March 30, 2021.
  22. ^ "The 17 Best Cookbooks of Fall 2021". Eater. September 7, 2021. Archived from the original on September 7, 2021. Retrieved November 30, 2021.
  23. ^ Carey, Emma (November 22, 2021). "How To Host A Holiday Party Like Carla Lalli Music". Bustle. Archived from the original on November 24, 2021. Retrieved November 30, 2021.
  24. ^ a b Carla Lalli Music (November 20, 2021). THAT SOUNDS SO GOOD (YouTube playlist). Retrieved November 30, 2021.
  25. ^ Masur, Lauren (August 29, 2019). "A Week of Dinners from Bon Appétit's Food Director, Carla Lalli Music". The Kitchn. Retrieved October 18, 2019.
  26. ^ Brodeur, Aimee. "Down the Aisle: Carla Lalli Music". Feedback NY. Retrieved October 19, 2019.
  27. ^ "That Sounds So Good by Carla Lalli Music: 9780593138250 | Books". Retrieved November 30, 2021.
  28. ^ "Back to Back Chef". Bon Appétit Videos. Retrieved March 30, 2021.
  29. ^ "Test Kitchen Talks". Bon Appétit Videos. Retrieved March 30, 2021.
  30. ^ "Making Perfect". Bon Appétit Videos. Retrieved March 30, 2021.

External links