25 Julia Child Quotes About Food, Friends and Life

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Julia Child's words of wisdom are just as relevant today as they were when The French Chef premiered 60 years ago.

Julia Child became a icon for her carefree attitude toward cooking on her television show, The French Chef. She taught a generation how to cook and have fun doing it. Part of her charm included her witty one-liners and nuggets of wisdom about life, people and being in the kitchen. Some of her best quotes have been collected in the book, People Who Love to Eat Are Always the Best People: And Other Wisdom (Alfred A. Knopf).

Related: The 20 Best Julia Child Thanksgiving Recipes

Here are five of our favorites from the book, plus 20 more of the best Julia Child quotes:

  1. “I think every woman should have a blowtorch.” —Julia Child

  2. “No matter what happens in the kitchen, never apologize.” —Julia Child

  3. “People who love to eat are always the best people." —Julia Child

  4. "The only time to eat diet food is while you're waiting for the steak to cook." —Julia Child

  5. "It is probably really much better not to see one's intimate family for more than two and a half days at a time." —Julia Child

    Reprinted from People Who Love to Eat Are Always the Best People: And Other Wisdom. Copyright © 2020 by The Julia Child Foundation for Gastronomy and the Culinary Arts. Reprinted by permission of Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Penguin Random House LLC. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher

  6. "This is my invariable advice to people: Learn how to cook—try new recipes, learn from your mistakes, be fearless and above all have fun." —Julia Child

  7. "Drama is very important in life: You have to come on with a bang. You never want to go out with a whimper." —Julia Child

  8. "I was 32 when I started cooking; up until then, I just ate." —Julia Child

  9. "Just speak very loudly and quickly, and state your position with utter conviction, as the French do, and you'll have a marvelous time!" —Julia Child

  10. "The measure of achievement is not winning awards. It's doing something that you appreciate, something you believe is worthwhile." —Julia Child

  11. "If you're afraid of butter, use cream." —Julia Child

  12. "Always remember: If you're alone in the kitchen and you drop the lamb, you can always just pick it up. Who's going to know?" —Julia Child

  13. "The only real stumbling block is fear of failure. In cooking you've got to have a what-the-hell attitude." —Julia Child

  14. "I think careful cooking is love, don't you? The loveliest thing you can cook for someone who's close to you is about as nice a Valentine as you can give." —Julia Child

  15. "Life itself is the proper binge." —Julia Child

  16. "The best way to execute French cooking is to get good and loaded and whack the hell out of a chicken. Bone appétit." —Julia Child

  17. "The more you know, the more you can create. There's no end to imagination in the kitchen." —Julia Child

  18. "A party without cake is really just a meeting" —Julia Child

  19. "Remember, no one's more important than people. In other words, friendship is the most important thing—not career or housework, or one's fatigue—and it needs to be tended and nurtured." —Julia Child

  20. "You don't have to cook fancy or complicated masterpieces–just good food from fresh ingredients." —Julia Child

  21. "Fat gives things flavor." —Julia Child

  22. "Find something you're passionate about and keep tremendously interested in it." —Julia Child

  23. "Cooking well doesn't mean cooking fancy." —Julia Child

  24. "You'll never know everything about anything, especially something you love." —Julia Child

  25. "To be a good cook you have to have a love of the good, a love of hard work, and a love of creating."—Julia Child

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