Lauren Braun Costello’s culinary career began fifteen years ago on a dare. At the time she was working on Wall Street and cooking elaborate meals in her spare time. When her then-boyfriend (now husband) dared her to quit her job and go to culinary school, she enrolled in the prestigious French Culinary Institute (now The International Culinary Center) and hasn’t looked back. She launched Gotham Caterers in 2002 where, as Executive Chef, she catered some of New York's most high-profile intimate events.
While running Gotham Caterers, Lauren simultaneously pursued her passion for food styling. As one of the most in-demand food stylists in the industry, she has worked with some of the biggest names in the culinary world. She has styled for everyone from Alice Waters to Tyler Florence, on such shows as ABC’s The View and The Early Show on CBS. Lauren is also a sought-after culinary instructor and speaker who has made sold-out appearances at Epcot's International Food & Wine Festival.
In 2010, Lauren was tapped to host 45 episodes of a new AOL cooking series called “Pantry Challenge.” Her series became the most popular on AOL’s cooking channel, KitchenDaily.com, logging more than 5 million views in its first three months. Lauren’s recipes and party-planning advice have appeared in The Los Angeles Times and on Nickelodeon’s ParentsConnect.com, and she has made numerous television appearances on WNBC’s Today in New York. Lauren also appeared as a guest on ABC’s The View with Meryl Streep, Amy Adams, and Nora Ephron to showcase some of Julia Child’s favorite recipes for the release of the movie “Julie & Julia.”
Lauren has published three books: the critically acclaimed Notes on Cooking: A Short Guide To An Essential Craft, The Competent Cook: Essential Tools, Techniques and Recipes for the Modern At-Home Cook, and an award-winning children’s book Eat Your Breakfast Or Else!.
Lauren holds a B.A. from Colgate University and earned a Grand Diploma in Culinary Arts with distinction from The French Culinary Institute (FCI), now known as the International Culinary Center (ICC). While at FCI she was named a recipient of the Les Dames d’Escoffier scholarship. She is now a board member of the Friends of ICC. Lauren currently lives in Connecticut, not far from her hometown of New York City, with her husband Sean, and sons Jonathan and William.