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How to Take Good Food Photos

Brigitte Xu

August 23, 2023


Dream of capturing Insta-worthy food photos? Whether you’re a restaurant owner or posting a picture of your lunch on your Instagram story, let’s unravel the secrets behind those perfect lunch shots. Read on for some tips based on what items you’re taking photos of:

1. Grain Bowls

For food photos of grain bowls, focus on the colorful mix and showcase the variety and textures of the elements of your bowl. Also, don’t be afraid to include props such as utensils, fabrics or fresh ingredients around the bowl itself. The best angle to take the photo? Bird’s eye view. 

2. Salads

For good salad photos, lighting is crucial, and natural light is the best at showcasing fresh ingredients. Also, think about the angles to take photos. A 45-degree angle often works best, highlighting layers and ingredients, but don’t be afraid to experiment with multiple angles to take photos before settling on the perfect one.

3. Burritos and sandwiches

For foods like burritos and sandwiches, where the excitement comes from the fillings, make sure to showcase the cross section. How to take food photos that showcase the insides? Slice your burrito and take a close-up shot to uncover the mystery of what’s inside. For some inspiration, we love sites like Unsplash or Shutterstock, which have large selections of food photos, but remember, it’s about leaving your unique mark!

4. Food Trucks

If you’re cool enough to own a food truck, or lucky enough that your company invites one over, make sure to take a good photo! To capture the ambiance, background matters. Show where the magic happens by zooming out and taking a picture of the surroundings as well as the truck itself. Or, for a dynamic shot that tells a story, zoom in on the process of food being handed straight from the chef to a customer. 

In the age of Instagram, photos rarely go from the camera roll straight to the feed. Editing Apps are prolific and normalized, and some of our favorites include VSCO and Snapseed. We like VSCO because it’s perfect for enhancing color and contrast, and its filters are especially popular among those who take food stock photos. We also like Snapseed because it allows for selective edits. Want to make the avocado in your salad pop? This is your tool. 

Taking stunning food photos is no longer reserved for professionals. With smartphones in hands, everyone’s becoming a food photographer. We hope that with these tips in your arsenal, every lunch can be an opportunity for a show-stopping food photo. 



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