Jeff Potter

Jeff Potter

New York City, New York

Jeff Potter is curious about the science of food and loves finding answers to why ingredients and recipes work the way they do. By bringing science to food-minded people—and food to science-minded people—he blends genres to educate the public about how to master the kitchen. He’s been featured in USA Today, the Today Show, and is a regular guest on Science Friday. He's even had the pleasure (and terror) of making a 500-pound donut for Food Network. A frequent speaker, he’s spoken across the globe, from Australia’s National Science Week to schools in Washington DC.

When not in the kitchen cooking with friends, Jeff Potter works with organizations and tech startups, building the technology behind their products. He studied computer science and visual art at Brown University. He can be found online at

Cooking for Geeks Cooking for Geeks
by Jeff Potter
Second Edition October 2015
Print: $39.99
Ebook: $33.00

Cooking for Geeks Cooking for Geeks
by Jeff Potter
August 2010

Jeff blogs at:

"Jeff Potter’s excellent book Cooking for Geeks provides a great introduction to the science of cooking meat, and explains what ranges of heat produce what effects in steak and why."
--Randall Munroe, what if? xkcd blog

"Chock full of charts, diagrams, food facts and recipes, this book is informative, imaginative and funny as all get out. "
--Charmian Christie

"Highly recommended!"
--Tom Brander,

"I must give a big thumbs-up to a book that all of you who like to cook will thoroughly enjoy Cooking for Geeks...I have quite a few books about cooking that get technical about food and cooking and Potter's book is one of the best."
--Mark Gibbs, Network World

"Cooking for Geeks is my new favourite culinary guide. I think every curious home cook needs a copy. How could I not love a book that explains how I can count my own tastebuds to find out whether I am a Super Taster, mill my own flour, or cook brownies in an orange? Cooking for Geeks is exuberant, charming, funny, good looking and intellectually stimulating. And what more could one possibly ask in a kitchen companion?"
--Sarah B. Hood, Toronto Tasting Notes

"Serious science lovers, inquire within."
--Lisa Abraham, The Akron Beacon Journal, Ohio

"The real fun of this book is in the way it approaches cooking from the perspective of a hacker."
--Emma Claire Goodman, BUST, April/May 2011

"I think you will enjoy not only the reading, but the intelligent manner in which the material is presented."
--Connie Wynn, Mouse Tracks, The Journal of the Portland MacIntosh Users Group

"There are people in this world, often called "geeks", who consider vocations like writing operating systems and building robots to be fun, interesting pastimes...This book was written (or sent from heaven) especially for them."
--Timothy Walker,

"For the mom who couldn't leave science class behind."
--Lee Svitak Dean,

"Check out Cooking for Geeks — your stomach (and your brain) will thank you."
--Dave Banks, GeekDad

"Fortunately for cooks everywhere, he made loads of notes while deconstructing recipes and techniques. The result was Cooking for Geeks: Real Science, Great Hacks and Good Food, an eye-opening manual for anyone who has ever pondered the science at work in the kitchen."
--Debbie Arrington, The Sacramento Bee

"I’m a very serious, very accomplished home cook and I got a tremendous amount out of this book. More importantly, I had scads of fun reading it."
--Jim Holmes, FrazzledDad

"Some of these recipes and techniques you'll want to try; some are just fun to read about. Most of them will make you want to play with food."
--Mary Branscombe, ZDNet UK

"And for the more cerebrally inclined and less poetic chefs of your acuaintance, you should perhaps consider the Cooking For Geeks: Real Science, Great Hacks, and Good Food, as being the sort of gift book that will provide much entertainment."
--Manolo the Shoeblogger, Manolo's Shoe Blog

"If you are a home-grown scientist with a big curiosity about life's tiniest chemical reactions, or you need help explaining to your kid why dough rises, check out Cooking for Geeks ($4.99). It is part cookbook, part laboratory manual."
--Megan O'Neil, Appolicious

"We found our payoff in the chapter on cooking around allergens. Of all the chapters, this is the one that most felt like a reference work — a concise but thorough reference work. Jeff explains why (for example) taking gluten out of a recipe and merely substituting some non-gluten flour is probably not going to produce edible results, and then explains some of the common approaches for dealing with the problem. He’s trusting us, the readers, to be able and willing to do some experimentation and find our own way without having a GPS to lead us by the nose. While it’s initially tempting to have the comfort of specific substitution steps, in the end, CfG will help you know how to make substitutions on your own and quickly dial in to an acceptable solution rather than sit around waiting for someone to write the HOWTO."
--Devin Ganger, Devin on Earth

"No doubt, some people will find all the science off-putting, but for many others, it will strip away the mystery of why things work or don't in the kitchen."
--Mark Kanny, Pittsburgh Tribune

"This book isn’t a traditional collection of recipes. It’s a wonderful tour of the world of food. It’s technical enough to be very informative concerning how food cooks and why certain combinations work so well."
--Chuck Hajdú, Monthly Computer Chronicle, October 2010

"But Potter has certainly opened my eyes. My son, a math major at college, will be getting a copy for Christmas. (I can say that because he never reads my column.)"
--David Brooks,