Serial Killer Dorothea Puente Is Dead, But Her Cookbook Lives On


Convicted serial killer Dorothea Puente died in Central California Women’s Facility prison on Sunday. But her legacy will live on past her death. And not just the legacy of her murders, but her culinary one. Yes, Cooking With a Serial Killer: Recipes From Dorothea Puente exists.

Puente ran a boarding house during the 1980s and cashed the Social Security checks of her elderly and mentally disabled boarders. When tenants complained, they were killed and buried in the yard. Puente maintained her innocence, claiming that they died of natural causes, but was found guilty and imprisoned. In 1998, she began exchanging letters and recipes with Shane Bugbee (who, according to Wikipedia is “a self proclaimed expert in serial killers” and also created a blueberry-flavored soda). He later published her recipes in the 2004 book.

Unfortunately, there’s only one review on Amazon, but that person calls the recipes “first rate.” And according to the book Female Serial Killers: How and Why Women Become Monsters, Puente was “famed” for her cooking. The book is selling quite well on Amazon, ranking in at number 7,334. You might say these are recipes to die for.