Kelsey Banfield, Writer

Kelsey Banfield, Writer

Kelsey Banfield
Food Writer and Cook Book Author

Kelsey grew up in Cooperstown, New York and has a Bachelor of Arts (BA) Degree in Psychology from Bates College in Lewiston, Maine.

After graduation Kelsey wanted to live in New York City so she took a job in finance, then traveled around in marketing jobs before taking a job in non-profit with The Society at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center doing fund raising. One of the Society’s fund raising projects she managed was a charitable cook book to raise money for the hospital. It turned out this project became the start of a new career.


Kelsey was responsible for collecting and organizing the recipes, plus she was involved in the photography for the book. Florence Fabricant, the New York Times Food Editor, who wrote the book, went thru the recipes with Rizzoli, the publisher, to determine the table of contents. Kelsey was the liaison between Rizzoli, Ms. Fabricant, and the society for this 2 year project.

Taking time off to spend time with her new daughter Kelsey said “I was beside myself I couldn’t get dinner on the table. All of a sudden I had a child who was grumpy at 5 o’clock and I was grumpy at 5 o’clock. I loved cooking healthy meals and needed to get into a new routine. I began cooking during nap time and just called myself “the nap time chef” at a play group one day and that’s how it all began. I decided to write a blog, The Naptime Chef and started writing about what was happening in my kitchen during nap time.”


A literary agent contacted Kelsey and they put a book proposal together that was shopped around to publishers. In the summer of 2010 she signed her book deal with Running Press.

“80 percent or more of the recipes in the book are new, not on the website. I wanted to give readers something new. The publisher designed the book, did the photography and is helping to arrange the promotion. I think we have a good quality product because we had enough time to do it.”

“Everyday is wild, I don’t have child care. Having a blog requires you to be a social media guru, I write columns for other blogs and have a grilling project with a major retailer, this summer.”

Kelsey feels that her education helped her in her present career because it emphasized writing and she always loved science. “Psychology is a social science. There is a lot of science in cooking; testing recipes requires a lot of measuring. Being precise, thinking things through objectively and being able to analyze what worked and didn’t work is necessary in creating recipes and cooking.”

Kelsey feels her biggest challenge now is her first book The Naptime Chef and establishing and cementing her reputation in a competitive market. Kelsey is hoping to build a life long career writing more cookbooks, articles, etc. The best part about her career is that she loves what she is doing.

Kelsey feels “Keeping my standards high and excellent quality is important. I want my readers to trust me, people to find me, and to be engaged.”

When she has spare time she loves spending time with family, reading and biking.

Her favorite cook book authors are:

Tessa Kiros
Nigella Lawson
Jamie Oliver