Larissa Zhou headshot


I am a food scientist and engineer.

I'm a 4th year PhD candidate in mechanical engineering and materials science at Harvard. My research projects are focused on improving how humans eat in low-resource environments. Currently, I'm quantifying "al dente" in pasta in Dave Weitz's ESCM lab. I'm also designing a cooking system for microgravity in collaboration with the Space Exploration Initative at the MIT Media Lab.

My work has been supported by the NASA Space Technology Research Fellowship since 2019.

Previously, I spent 5 years as the food scientist at Modernist Cuisine, where I led technical R&D on the award-winning, extremely heavy, 5-volume Modernist Bread. I got my start in the field by designing and teaching classes on the science of cooking at Harvard and UCLA. I received my AB in Physics with a minor in Social Anthropology from Harvard in 2011.

I've also worked with the following organizations: Off Their Plate, Fundació Alícia, The Nordic Food Lab (now part of the Univ. of Copenhagen), and Black Sesame Kitchen.

Contact me at zhou6(at)fas.harvard.edu.