Love and Olive Oil

The Making of a Cookbook

The Making of "Breakfast for Dinner"

I thought you all might like a little behind the scenes look at the making of our new book. You know, just in case you thought writing a cookbook was glamorous or something.

The Making of the "Breakfast for Dinner" Cookbook

I promise you, it’s not.

Pajamas? What pajamas?

Pajamas? What pajamas?

The Making of the "Breakfast for Dinner" Cookbook

The entire book (all 58+ recipes) were developed and tested in our kitchen and shot in our living room. From pancakes to margaritas, we did it all.

The Making of the "Breakfast for Dinner" Cookbook

And oh boy, did we make a mess.

The Making of the "Breakfast for Dinner" Cookbook The Making of the "Breakfast for Dinner" Cookbook The Making of the "Breakfast for Dinner" Cookbook

We have three cats, you know. Not that you’d know from these shots. One of them was much more involved in this whole process than the other two. And by involved I mean usually in the way.

The Making of the "Breakfast for Dinner" Cookbook Banana Bread Bundt Cake

Kind of cool to see the process and the final product. The beautiful final product. The book is a sturdy hard-cover book with embossed lettering and thick matte pages, a real testament to the quality and thought that Quirk puts into their books. I can’t stop touching it.

The Making of the "Breakfast for Dinner" Cookbook

Cover shot, take two. Those burgers were not fun. Although they were delicious.

The Making of the "Breakfast for Dinner" Cookbook

Now who wants to come help clean up?

Breakfast for Dinner: Recipes for Frittata Florentine, Huevos Rancheros, Sunny-Side-Up Burgers, and More! officially hits stores February 12th. That’s like, less than a month away (eep!) And if you’re in Nashville, San Fran, Napa, and Memphis: get your frying pans ready, because we’ve got book signing events planned in your area during the month of February. We’d love to meet you! You can also buy a super special autographed copy directly from us. Signed by the two of us. Not Sgt. Pepper though. Because he can’t hold a pen.

And uh, don’t miss tomorrow’s post. You may (just may) get an opportunity to win one before the publication date. But shh, you didn’t hear that from me.

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  1. Lindsay, you and Taylor are so cute!

    … but Sgt Pepper is impossibly cuter. I hope he makes a cameo!! Can’t wait for the new book.

  2. this is so inspiring! cannot believe you guys did this all from your own home. fantastic job will be so cool to see the new book. thanks for sharing this behind the scene. I am so impressed!

  3. I’m so excited that you have a second book coming out! Breakfast for Dinner was one of my mom’s favorite things to make us when we were little, so I am really looking forward to the new book. Also, I’m a complete behind-the-scenes-photo junky. I love to see how everything works. Congrats on your new book!

  4. How long did the photography portion take you? SO impressed with your gorgeous photos. I am a complete beginner when it comes to food photography so I love seeing behind-the-scenes views. Congrats on your accomplishment!

    • Each shot took a good 3-4 hours to prep, shoot, and clean up. We were still working a somewhat regular schedule, so we’d only do 1 or 2 shots per day as we were able to fit them in, all over the course of a few months.

      Needless to say, we didn’t get out much during that time. Ha!

  5. Very cool to see the process behind the book. I especially like the cat’s involvement. :)

  6. Lindsay, this is so wonderful to see. I didn’t know you had a new cookbook coming out. Cookie Dough Lover’s is front and center on my cookbook shelf. Thank you so much for posting this. I am longing for a publishing deal for my own dream cookbook someday. Need to get my feet a little more wet in the blogging world for now. Thank you for this Lindsay and I can’t wait to buy!

  7. I love this post! It’s also helpful for me. I need to get out my tripod and my stool!

  8. I love that you show all the WORK behind creating tasty photos. The new book looks beautiful!

    We have two cats, but it’s the tuxedo cat who gets into everything. Maybe there’s something about the breed :p

  9. I am in love with this post! Thanks for sharing it, Lindsay. And all that food, photography, work!!! Not only developing the recipes and writing about them, and writing the book, but just the photography alone is an epic task. And I love seeing the cake from ‘real shoot’ to page in a book. And I also love that gray backdrop (and the cake!)

    Congrats on a major!!!!!!! accomplishment and the book itself sounds like a gorgeous high-quality book to be cherished for ages!

  10. Congrats on your second book. Breakfast for dinner is totally my jam — I’m completely excited to dive into it.

    Also, loved the behind the scenes feature :)

  11. How nice! I love this posts! And the pictures of how you take the pictures are going to be extremely helpful for our blog! Thanks!

  12. Well I sure am glad to see it’s not just my kitchen that looks like a tornado came through after making a meal.

    And I love that little clip idea on the white board!

  13. Congrats! I love seeing the behind the scenes pictures. I really need a little footstool like that – I am so damn short and always standing on something different when trying to get overhead shots!

  14. This was such a fun post! Thank you so much for sharing!

    xx Kait

  15. I pre-ordered mine last week! :) I love these behind the scenes shots… SO much fun! And I’m completely obsessed with the table you shoot on. What a fabulous find.

  16. I love that you showed us the behind the scenes. Everything looks so good and I can’t wait to get the cookbook.

  17. this is so cool! did you have your camera set up with a cord to send the pics directly over to photoshop? it looks like a very helpful tool.

  18. I love seeing the behind the scenes of this! I am always interested in photo set-ups, so I think a trip to the hardware and craft stores are on the docket this weekend : ) Thanks for sharing!

  19. Yay, congrats!! So excited for your second book!! Sgt Pepper may not be able to hold a pen, but he could leave a paw print. :)

  20. I’m completely jealous of the big windows and natural light. Can’t wait for the new cookbook to come out. Congrats.

  21. WOW, thanks so much for sharing what it is truly like behind the scenes of making a cookbook. This process looks super cool though I am sure it is TONS of work. I can’t wait for the cookbook!

  22. What an absolutely fantastic post! I love it!!! Congrats!

  23. It’s great to see behind the scenes of making a cookbook. The pictures are looking very promising.
    Also what I always wonder and I want to ask you that… did you eat all the stuff you cooked for the cookbook?

    • Indeed we did! With the exception of a few things (like the second batch of burgers) that sat out a bit too long while we were photographing. We didn’t want to waste anything but didn’t want to poison ourselves either, haha.

  24. I love this!!! And ok, you’ve seriously inspired me to buy a step stool. For years I have been teetering on the edge of a chair — crazy! A step stool would be completely, um, logical. :)

    Can’t wait for the new book!!

  25. Looks fun to me! I definitely help you cleaning those mess, but in the meantime, let me pre-order it. Can’t wait to give your recipes a try!

  26. Wow, thank you! I’ve always wondered what studio setup looks like, ideas for backdrops, etc.

    Your little table is awesome. And I need a tripod.

  27. Seriously awesome looking behind the scenes…cannot wait for this book!! And the kitty cone of shame slays me :)

  28. This is so wonderful, thank you for sharing! My dream is to write my own cookbook so this is extremely exciting for me to see :) I do have a quick question, what materials do you use as backgrounds in your photos? I saw cloth but I couldn’t make out what the other two boards are made out of. What do you recommend using?

    • I’ve got assorted fabric, placemats, wood slats, marble, vintage cutting boards… all about variety. Any texture/surface can make for an interesting photo!

  29. omg this is such a neat post – I am constantly trying to improve my food photography and it’s so intriguing to see how you set up for your photos. And I can’t wait to see this new book! Brinner is the best :D

  30. Wow a lot of work, but looking great. And poor kitty with the cone of shame :-(

  31. Your cat is about as bad as my dogs, who live through their nose and which makes it into about half of my shots. What a great view for all of us to get the chance to peek into your process. Your talents reach far beyond those of mere mortals. And that bundt cake is inspiring. Can’t wait to get my hands on a copy and tell everyone about it. Congratulations!

  32. Congratulations! I went through this process this last year too, and I wish I had taken pictures of the insanity! It is so hard and crazy, and there are lots of pajamas and dish soap involved :)

  33. Love the behind-the-scenes look, plus your cat is adorable! :)


  34. Wow, so nice to see that I am not the only one without a photo-room to shoot in, recognize homemade props I also use, beloved animals trying to help, and let’s not forget – the messy kitchen, that somehow always appears form the now-where!
    Congratulations on your cookbook!

  35. I love seeing these posts from you. Can’t wait to get my hand on this book. :)

  36. Such a great post! Love the mess…I mean, I love looking at the mess through the computer screen ;)
    Can’t wait for the book!

  37. Congrats!!! So thrilled for you!

  38. SO AWESOME! I can’t wait to get a copy of the book – everything looks beautiful! My mini doxie loves when I’m in the kitchen, so I totally understand the fuzzy helpers!

  39. Agree those burgers are amazing!! :) Sgt P totally looks like he’s supervising you. Haha cannot wait for this book! Congrats again!

  40. Congratulations on the new cookbook. Love seeing how you took your shots.

  41. What a great peek behind the cookbook. My favorite picture is the one of Taylor washing the dishes, ha.

  42. Love this bts look!

    xo Jennifer

  43. I remember similar scenes shooting my own book – it’s such hard work but so rewarding seeing all the wondeful pictures build up. You really get a sense for what the finished book will look like. Well done!

  44. I cannot wait to get this book!

    I love the behind the scenes shots – I have two dachshunds over here that like to get involved also…

  45. I can’t wait to see the cookbook! I have been a huge fan of love and olive oil ever since I made your chocolate chip cookie dough truffles a few years ago as part of my Christmas gifting and got rave reviews from all that received them (and myself!) Congrats on the book!

  46. Love your new book! My hubby would adore your book, since breakfast is his favorite meal and he could eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Love the behind the scenes look – you two were super busy! The photo of the cat napping on the table is precious! Congrats!!!!

  47. I am dying over the cat photos. I WANT this book,Lindsay! But please can Sgt Pepper sign mine?

  48. i just pre-ordered it! i can’t wait to get it :) these posts are so fun to see, too. i love watching the process. oh, and sgt. pepper is way too cute ;)

  49. I loved seeing these shots – it’s incredible to see the amount of work that goes into a cookbook and the finished article is something that you can be very proud of by the looks of it. I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy!

  50. Love the kitty photos! It’s always nice to have some help in the kitchen… can’t wait to get my hands on a copy of this lovely book!

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