UK Food influencers redefining taste for your brand

May 30, 2024
UK Food influencers redefining taste for your brand

Remember the last time you were influenced to buy a new ingredient at the store or visit a restaurant? There’s a good chance that influence came from a social media creator instead of a traditional ad.

Influencer marketing is a booming business because it’s a highly effective form of marketing. Influencers can be powerful partners for restaurants and food brands in particular, catching niche audiences’ attention with well-produced and relatable foodie content.

Food is a favorite topic among consumers, and influencers can help your brand stand out with mouthwatering content that doubles as a meaningful review. They’ve already built a rapport with the audience you want to reach, and followers trust their opinion.

If you’re a brand marketing to UK audiences, the food influencer scene is bursting with talented creators with a pulse on food and restaurant trends across the country. In this guide, we’ll cover the current state of influencer marketing and food trends, what to know when working with food influencers, and some of the top UK foodie influencers across cooking, baking, plant-based meals and more.

Understanding the UK food influencer landscape

Influencer advertising in the UK has grown year over year, reaching more than a billion US dollars in annual spend as of 2024. Instagram remains a leading platform for influencers and social media users in the UK, with nearly 60% of internet users accessing the platform.

It is also important to research trends in the food industry—some of which UK influencers are helping define—before starting your marketing outreach. According to SquareMeal, some of the exciting things to look out for in 2024 include:

With plenty of trends to explore, you’re probably eager to start drafting those intro emails to influencers. Before diving in, you’ll want to develop a social strategy that includes an Instagram influencer marketing plan. Let’s review what you need to consider when developing a partnership.

What to consider when choosing UK food influencers

Any UK food influencer your brand partners with should check a few important boxes:

ASA guidelines govern both influencers and the brands they work with. The ASA website has specific platform guidelines and types of content that you should review before embarking on a new campaign. When in doubt, make sure every post the influencer does on your brand’s behalf is clearly marked as advertising.

Now that we have the background information covered, let’s take a look at some of the top UK food influencers of 2024.

Leading Food influencers in the UK

Here are 10 UK food influencers leading the pack in exploring restaurants, cooking and more. They range in following size, but never lack creativity.

Daniel John – @daniel_johneats

Daniel’s feed is filled with photos of his recipes and meals he enjoys at restaurants in London and beyond. His food styling skills are apparent, and he helpfully includes full recipes for the dishes he creates in the post captions so you can experiment at home.

Vena Gao – @vernahungrybanana

Verna’s at-home cooking content took off during the COVID-19 pandemic, and she’s since published a cookbook featuring delicious Asian recipes. In her cooking and meals at restaurants, Verna often focuses on Chinese food but explores all kinds of cuisine. If you live in London, you may be lucky enough to catch her at one of her supper clubs.

Maya Aweida – @sorrynotsalad

A Time Out Tastemaker, Maya spotlights the best of London’s food scene through fun videos. As her Instagram handle suggests, you won’t find many salads in her feed,but you will find delectable bowls of noodles, plates of sushi and pasta of all kinds.

Anja Maršić – @hungry_anja

Anja’s background is in recipe development. Across Instagram, TikTok and Facebook, her audience is treated to daily recipe videos featuring everything from risotto to burrata-piled baguettes to breakfast crepes.

Christy Lam – @the_lazyfoodie

If you love coffee, Christy Lam’s feed will be a dream come true. Though she includes beautiful photos of a variety of food, coffee shops and the drinks and pastries inside are her specialty. Espresso and sweet treats are always in style with Lam.

Nigella Lawson – @nigellalawson

Including Nigella Lawson on an influencers list might be cheating a bit. She is, after all, a true powerhouse in the UK food world and has been since the mid 90s. A food critic, author, TV show host and more, Nigella’s social media presence combines her cooking adventures with restaurant visits, cookbook reviews and life updates for her fans.

Pippa Perriam – @eatinburgh

Scotland-based Pippa has a knack for branding and curating the best restaurant picks in any city she visits. Her Instagram posts highlight her unique style and color palette. She also offers reasonably priced foodie maps of various cities to aid her followers’ own adventures.

John Gregory Smith – @johngs

John is a chef and prolific cookbook author who frequently appears on the BBC’s Morning Live. On his feed, you’ll find relatable cooking videos that show you each step of the process. Follow along as he makes what he refers to as “face plant food.”

Thomasina Miers – @thomasinamiers

Thomasina is no newbie to the UK food scene, having published seven cookbooks. She cares deeply about where our food comes from, and shares recipes in her regular Guardian Feast column. Many of the recipes she shares are inspired by her frequent global travels.

Shamsa – @officiallyshamsa

Shamsa is a unique inclusion on this list as YouTube is her main platform. With seven children, her days are busy, and she shares her tips for cooking delicious family meals. Shamsa also shares recipes connected to her culture, including menus for holidays like Ramadan.

Plant-based and vegan food influencers in the UK

Need vegan food inspiration that doesn’t sacrifice flavor? Look no further than these five plant-based UK food influencers.

Gaz Oakley – @gazoakley

Gaz is a vegan chef and homesteader, so most of his recipes include ingredients he’s grown in his garden or foraged nearby. In addition to drool-worthy cooking videos, Gaz offers foraging and herbal education in his content.

Lucy Parker – @lucy_and_lentils

Scrolling through Lucy’s posts will have you hungry even if you’re not vegan. Her recipes are simple and easy to follow, but add a level of elegance to everyday cooking. You can find recipes for everything from breakfast to dessert and all that comes in between.

Harriet Porterfield –

Harriet is a self taught cook and published her first cookbook last year. She advocates eating “the rainbow” and her videos feature naturally beautiful food full of color. Her vegan, healthy food doesn’t skimp on aesthetics.

Paul Kerton – @hench_herbivore

Paul is a personal trainer who is passionate about showing vegans how to live a plant-based lifestyle while building muscle and staying fit. His posts include fitness advice as well as recipes with full macronutrient breakdowns.

Bettina Campolucci Bordi – @bettinas_kitchen

Bettina’s content is like sitting at her kitchen table. She has a niche as a retreat chef, cooking for people who are spending time in a space dedicated to better health and wellness. She also leads trainings for others who dream of cooking up gourmet meals for retreat guests.

Street food influencers in the UK

Street food is popular in the UK thanks to a melting pot of cultures. Here’s a handful of influencers who can guide you to the best of the best.

British Street Food Awards – @britishstreetfoodawards

Award-winning food journalist Richard Johnson is a street food guru. He launched the British Street Food Awards in 2009 to spotlight the movers and shakers in this specific food arena. The awards’ Instagram account often features videos of past award winners and potential newcomers.

Kar-Shing Tong – @ks_ate_here

Kar-Shing’s approach to food content is straightforward: Let the food shine. While you won’t see much of Kar-Shing himself, you will see plenty of tasty bites, many on-the-go, presented as if you are the diner enjoying the experience.

Anton Clark – @aton_of_food

If you’re looking for recommendations on the absolute best street food in London (and beyond), Anton will be your new favorite Instagram follow. Scroll through videos and photos of burgers, sandwiches, birria tacos and dim sum—prepare to get hungry.

Toby Inskip – @eatingwithtod

Toby is a burger enthusiast, but loves uncovering hidden gems for all types of cuisine. One of his recent posts highlights a secret backyard Caribbean kitchen, while another showcases the smallest BBQ restaurant in the UK.

Cooking influencers in the UK

Follow these influencers to find your next favorite recipe.

Shelina Permalloo – @shelinacooks

A past Master Chef winner and cookbook author, Shelina’s warm and inviting personality comes through in every recipe she does. As a mom, she’s focused on sharing meals the entire family will enjoy that you can easily make at home.

Nigel Kabvina – @simplyni_

Nigel is a foodie force on TikTok, where his most viewed video has been seen 57 million times. He’s a mixologist, and puts together recipes that pair with his unique cocktails. He always sets the stage in his picturesque home, often with fresh flowers.

Nina Parker – @antoninaparker

Nina’s recipes are veggie heavy, and include plates piled wonderfully high with pasta. Her videos put the food front and center, which usually features simple ingredients. Nina also shares meals from her travels.

Emily Leary – @amummytoo

If you’re looking for a UK food influencer who can get you in front of a Facebook audience, Emily may be a great fit. It’s her largest platform, but she shares her cooking and baking recipes across multiple channels. You’ll find plenty of chocolate on her pages, with cupcakes, brownies and cookies galore.

Ainsley Harriott – @ainsleyfoods

Ainsley is a well-known chef and TV personality in the UK. His Ainsley Foods company brings Caribbean flavors to grocery store shelves with soups and meal kits. The recipes he shares with followers often use the hashtag #GoodMoodFood.

Baking influencers in the UK

What is life without a sweet treat once in a while? These influencers bring tons of pastry inspiration.

Holly Jade – @thelittleblogofvegan

You’d never guess from the creaminess each of her baked good photos exude that Holly is a vegan baker. Her vegan bakes are also perfect for people who have certain food allergies, including dairy and eggs. She’s also recently published a cookbook with her best recipes.

Matt Adlard – @mattadlard

Matt is a familiar face as a host and judge on several Food Network shows, including Christmas Cookie Challenge. He’s a self-taught pastry chef and runs an online baking school. Among photos of his beautiful, polished desserts, you’ll also occasionally find dinner recipes.

Jemma Wilson – @cupcakejemma

Jemma owns Crumbs & Doilies, a London bakery, and shares behind the scenes videos and full recipes of many of the shop’s creations. The Cupcake Jemma YouTube channel is one of the most popular baking channels on the platform. Her bakes are colorful, and include any type of pastry you could hope for.

Jane Dunn – @janespatisserie

Jane is the bestselling author of three cookbooks, and her recipes invite you to make every day a celebration. Whether you’re baking for a special occasion or just want some really good cookies for yourself, Jane’s recipes are the perfect go to. She occasionally includes vegan options as well.

Benjamina Ebuehi – @bakedbybenji

Benjamina appeared on the Great British Bake Off at just 23, and has since become a popular baking influencer. Her recipes include the fluffiest cakes and indulgent frosting. Fans can also subscribe to her Substack, which has around 10,000 followers.

Cook up a tasty social media strategy with food influencers

The world of UK food influencers is brimming with foodies of all kinds, from celebrity chefs to self-taught home cooks. They have a lot to offer your brand, no matter what part of the food industry you sit in.

As you get started with influencer marketing, we recommend making sure you have the right support in place. These influencer marketing tools will help you find, connect and collaborate with food influencers that will make your next campaign absolutely delicious.

Source: sproutsocial