Bartender, 25, who started cooking in lockdown lands recipe book deal

Bartender, 25, who learned to cook while bored in lockdown reveals how he landed his own recipe book deal after going viral on TikTok and quitting his job

  • Bartek, 25, who lives in London, was bored while furloughed in April last year 
  • Started posting videos to TikTok and has since accumulated 580,000 followers
  • Budding chef has been so successful that he was able to quit his bartending job 

A former bartender who learned how to cook during lockdown has revealed how he quit his job and released a recipe book after going viral on TikTok. 

Known only as Bartek, the 25-year-old, who lives in London, was bored while furloughed from his bartending job in April last year and decided to try his hand at cooking for the first time, making a cheesecake. 

His younger sister Tosia, 16, was so impressed she encouraged him to post a video of the cake online and his second post – creamy garlic and parmesan chicken – went viral, reaching 500,000 people overnight.   

The budding chef – who goes by username Letsmunch – has been so successful that he was able to quit his bartending job for good and has now launched his own book of recipes called Let’s Munch: The Chronicles. 

Bartek, 25, who lives in London, who learned how to cook during lockdown, has revealed how he quit his job and released a recipe book after going viral on TikTok


His mouth-watering recipes include avocado toast with bacon, hollandaise sauce and a poached egg (left) and delicious cheesecake swirl brownies 

The budding chef has been so successful that he was able to quit his bartending job for good in August 2021 and has now launched his own book of recipes called Let’s Munch: The Chronicles

The TikTok chef, who currently has 580,000 dedicated followers, first fell in love with food while watching his mum, Mariola, whip up traditional Polish recipes – but he didn’t start cooking for himself properly until last year. 

‘I’ve always been in the kitchen with my mum so she taught me a lot, but I only really got into cooking because of lockdown,’ Bartek said. 

‘I filmed my first video and taught myself from there – I didn’t spend hours learning.’

Finding it fun to experiment with new flavours – including fried chorizo mac and cheese balls, spicy mango margarita prawns and steak and Eggs Benedict – Bartek continued posting videos, filming the process on his phone and editing the clips himself. 


Pictured left,  Bartek’s breakfast bun featuring caramelised onions, cheese, egg and bacon on a brioche roll. Right, his Korean BBQ Corn Dogs

‘I never thought I was artistic or creative in any way before, but since I started cooking I just put some music on, give myself two or three hours [to try out a recipe] and I’m in the zone. It’s like time away from my own head.

‘With TikTok I came into it at a very good time, when everyone was at home cooking, so it made it easier for my audience to grow.

‘It all happened so quickly – about four months after I started, I had a real following and people started to remake my recipes.

‘Over lockdown, I’d film a recipe and then the next day 10 people had made it too. I just took things day by day and fell into it.’

Bartek, who previously worked flipping burgers at a Gourmet Burger Kitchen restaurant, believes his success might not just be down to the food, but also thanks to his image.

The TikTok chef, who currently has 580,000 dedicated followers, first fell in love with food while watching his mum, Mariola, whip up traditional Polish recipes


Bartek’s recipes include Baked French Toast (left) as well as delicious savoury dishes (right)

He said: ‘There aren’t many cooks nowadays that the younger generation can relate to.

‘You have Gordon Ramsay and Jamie Oliver but not many younger people – especially from London.

‘I think young people see me as a London boy doing it and talking like them, and think ‘yeah maybe I can do something like that’.’

Bartek originally did a degree in economics but quickly realised it wasn’t for him – admitting his new career path has come as a total surprise.

Bartek originally did a degree in economics but quickly realised it wasn’t for him. Pictured: Bartek while working as a bartender 

Bartek, who previously worked flipping burgers at a Gourmet Burger Kitchen restaurant, believes his success might not just be down to the food, but also thanks to his image

He said: ‘I enjoy it a lot so I don’t really find it difficult, and most of the recipes I can do on the first try.

‘Now I’m doing this full-time, I have a lot more time to make everything from scratch. I like to do a lot of different recipes and have variety and I think that’s what people are drawn to.’

He has now launched his recipe book, featuring some of his most popular dishes – including Korean beef bulgogi, buffalo chicken Alfredo and budget-friendly ramen.

As well as having physical copies of the recipes, each dish comes with a QR code so fans can cook along with the home chef.

A recent hit on TikTok has been his stuffed French toast, which racked up 800,000 likes and was viewed more than 4.5 million times.


Finding it fun to experiment with new flavours – including fried chorizo mac and cheese balls, spicy mango margarita prawns and steak and Eggs Benedict – Bartek continued posting videos, filming the process on his phone and editing the clips himself

The secret? Soaking a brioche loaf in custard before stuffing it with indulgent marshmallow spread and frying it up- and the simple hack went down a treat with his followers.

Meanwhile his stacked burger recipe was also a hit, with more than 175,000 people liking the post.

One person commented: ‘It’s a 10/10 from me.’

‘Omg this looks so good,’ said another viewer.

Someone else added: ‘I tried it and it was sooooo good.’ [sic]

‘Looks mad tasty,’ another user agreed.

A recent hit on TikTok has been his stuffed French toast, which racked up 800,000 likes and was viewed more than 4.5 million times


He has now launched his recipe book, featuring some of his most popular dishes – including creamy garlic and parmesan chicken and a honey Sriracha chicken sandwich

On other posts, viewers have said ‘Gordon Ramsay would like this’ and commented that Bartek should have his own cooking show.

Speaking about his change of career and TikTok stardom, Bartek said: ‘It’s been a bit of a shock but I’ve accustomed to it quite well.

‘I don’t like focusing on the numbers so I won’t make a video just for it to go viral – I want to keep it natural.

‘I’m just taking things day by day and enjoying it.’

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