Culinary Theme Mysteries : Cooking Mysteries….. F, G, H, I, J, & K

The Culinary Theme in Cozy Mystery Novels has become quite popular amongst die-hard cozy mystery readers. This is a continuation of the list of the mystery authors who have chosen culinary themes:

Nancy Fairbanks writes the Carolyn Blue Culinary Mystery Series which (of course) features Carolyn… with her husband who happens to be a scientist. The books include recipes. (Fairbanks is also known as Nancy Herndon… who writes the Elena Jarvis mystery series.)

Jerrilyn Farmer ‘s Madeline Bean Mystery Series features Maddie, the owner of Mad Bean Events Catering. Maddie not only caters to the Los Angeles elite, but she also manages to work in time to solve crimes when she’s not whipping up a delicacy.

In 2006, Honora Finkelstein and Susan Smily put out their first novel in the Ariel Quigley Series, which features an English teacher/Psychic sleuth. The novel was nominated for the Best First Novel category of the prestigious Agatha Awards. There are now two novels in the series and both of them have accompanying recipe books.

Joanne Fluke is the author of the Cookie Jar Cozy Mystery Series that takes place in Minnesota. Hannah Swensen not only manages the bakery, but she also manages to solve crimes between baking up batches of delicious treats. And, as a special bonus, the recipes of these sweet treats are included in the novels.

Cynthia Gallant-Simpson writes the Nantucket Mystery Series, which features a caterer in Nantucket.

Rosie Genova writes the Italian Kitchen Mystery Series. This series is set in New Jersey and features a sleuth who is a mystery author turned chef.

Daryl Wood Gerber (aka Avery Aames) writes the Cookbook Nook Mystery Series. This series features the owner of a cookbook store, on the California coast.

Nadia Gordon writes the Sunny McCoskey Napa Valley Mystery Series. Sunny is the chef of an organic restaurant in the wine country valley.

Kerry Greenwood has the Corinna Chapman Mystery Series which takes place in beautiful Melbourne, Australia, with Corinna being a baker.

Victoria Hamilton pens the Vintage Kitchen Mystery Series, which features Jaymie Leighton, a collector of vintage cookbooks and cookware. Hamilton also writes the Merry Muffin Mysteries, which take place in New York and feature a muffin baker.

Susannah Hardy (aka Sadie Hartwell) writes the Greek to Me Mystery Series, which stars Georgie Nikolopatos, manager of Bonaparte House, a Greek restaurant and historic landmark in upstate New York.

Ellen Hart writes the Sophie Greenway Culinary Mystery Series which features a food critic and magazine editor who solves mysteries on the side.  (Hart also authors another series that is sort of culinary in theme…. the main character is a restaurateur.)

B. B. Haywood writes the Candy Holliday Mystery Series which has as its sleuth, a woman who returns home to Maine to co-manage a blueberry farm with her father. Blueberry-based recipes are included.

Betty Hechtman writes the Yarn Retreat Mystery Series, which features a dessert chef who inherits a yarn retreat business in California.

A.L. Herbert writes the Mahalia Watkins Soul Food Mystery Series, featuring the owner of a sweet tea restaurant in Maryland.

Lee Hollis write the Hayley Powell Food & Cocktail Mystery Series, which features a single mom/sleuth who “runs” a newspaper and writes a newspaper food column.

Mary Ellen Hughes writes the Pickled and Preserved Mystery Series. The sleuth (Piper Lamb) owns a pickles and preserves shop in New York. (Recipes are included.)

Julie Hyzy writes the White House Chef Mystery Series which is obviously set in Washington, D.C., and features an assistant chef at the White House as its sleuth…

Cathie John   Husband and wife duo Cathie and John Celestri pen the Journal of Kate Cavanaugh Culinary Mystery Series, in which Kate is a caterer who solves mysteries. The Cathie part of the duo has a culinary background and the John part adds (what their website describes as) the “quirky” side of the series.

Claire M. Johnson, who writes the Mary Ryan, Pastry Chef Mystery Series.

So far, Nina Killham‘s culinary mystery series is only a stand alone book. The Jasmine March Mystery “Series” involves Jasmine March, a cookbook author and gourmet (or is it gourmand?!?) who lives in Washington, D. C. This book was published in 2002, I am not sure if there is another book in the makings…

Josi S. Kilpack writes the Culinary Mystery Series, which features Sadie Hofmiller as its sleuth.

Peter King is the next culinary-theme mystery author. His culinary mystery is set in London, and features a food consultant by the name of Goodwyn Harper. The Goodwyn Harper Mystery Series is unique in that it is written by a real-life Cordon Bleu Chef!

Here are some more of my CULINARY – COOKING THEMES:

Mysteries with Recipes AND Recipe Books by Mystery Authors

Cozy Mystery Authors with Culinary Themes: A – D

Cozy Mystery Authors with Culinary Themes: L – R

Cozy Mystery Authors with Culinary Themes: S – W Plus Some!

Cozy Mystery Authors with Culinary Themes: Even More!

Where to Start with Culinary Cozy Mystery Series…

♦To access more Cozy Mysteries by Theme click on this link.♦


  1. says

    A newer author with the culinary theme is Jessica Conant-Park and her mom Susan Conant (a dog themed cozy writer). The first book is Steamed and was pretty good. There are only 3 in the series but one to watch out for!

  2. Sandy says

    You have the Australian author Kerry Greenwood’s historical Phryne Fisher series. She also writes a series set in modern Melbourne, Australia featuring a baker, Corinna Chapman. I know of three books in the series: Heavenly Pleasures, Earthly Delights and Devil’s food. These are all excellent cozy mysteries.

  3. regina says


    What has happened to Nancy Fairbank’s book “Blood Pudding”? It was due to be published in March 2009 and there is no sign of it. Is she ill or not writing any more. Thank you.

  4. says

    Hi Regina,

    Your guess is as good as mine! I looked at her website, and all I could find is:

    “Having been disabled by torn ankle ligaments in 2007, causing her to cancel two wonderful trips, Nancy is planning, ankle permitting, to finish her next book, Blood Pudding, and then travel to Strasbourg, France, in June and to Mallorca, Spain, in September.”

    According to the Borders site, Blood Pudding is coming out in April ’10…

    Does anyone else have any information on Nancy Fairbanks?

    • Nancy says

      Back when I learned from the book jacket that Herndon’s husband was a chemistry professor at UT-El Paso, I looked him up (I’m a biology professor so I was curious). More recently I googled for her and him and pulled up an obituary for her husband. If I remember correctly he died in the fall of 2011. I’m guessing that his passing, and perhaps illness leading to it, has derailed her writing. I sure do miss additions to the series!!!

        • Stash Empress says

          Just out of curiosity, reading this in 2015, I went to Amazon to see if Blood Pudding ever was released — apparently its available for pre-order — says its coming out December 31, 2025!

          Yes, not a typo (at least on my part!) — says 2025! So hey — if its worth the wait — with Amazon’s Pre-Order Price Guarantee, you can order now & lock in the pre-order price of $6.99!

          Cuz who knows how much paperback books will be costing in 10 years from now?????


  5. Rochelle says

    Question, I just saw the culinary series by Josi S. Kilpack and they look really good, but they aren’t sold in regular stores and I have no working credit card to order them online. Where can I find them? I’m in BC Canada and can’t seem to find any LDS stores around (apparently she writes through that church) Also any idea if they come in mass market paperback format? I can only seem to find them in Trade Paperback format. Thanks

  6. says

    Hi Rochelle,

    We happen to have an LDS store here in our neighborhood. (They built a temple here a few years ago.) I just printed out your comment to ask for suggestions. I’ll get back to you via your e-mail address…

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