top of page

the kitchen nomad

Morena Leite grew up in Trancoso, in seas where the Portuguese arrived in search of spices 500 years ago in Brazil.  Trancoso is located in Porto Seguro, a corner of the world that welcomes people from different places and this contact aroused Morena's curiosity for people.


At his parents' restaurant, which houses a tropical orchard, she fell in love with fruits, having breakfast with the inn's guests, and there she realized that she could interpret people through their gastronomic personality. She thought about doing international relations and anthropology, but her gastronomic DNA ended up speaking louder and became a cook following in her mother Sandra's footsteps.

She graduated from Le Cordon Bleu in Paris  in 1999, then came to São Paulo, where she has been in charge of Capim Santo for 18 years, forming a team of more than 500 employees.  She established herself not only as a Chef, but also as an important figure in the dissemination of Brazilian gastronomy with restaurants in places such as Teatro Municipal, Museu da Casa Brasileira and Instituto Tomie Ohtake.


She defends that food is not just food, food is food, fun, culture and art. With the motto of knowing, connecting and sharing, in 2010 she created the Instituto Capim Santo, a school for cooks. Instituto teach  people in social vulnerability, and currently has 5 units.

With Capim Santo buffet, she took the flavors of capim santo to the 5 continents, having traveled to more than 50 countries.


In 2017, she implemented a Brazilian menu at Café de l'Homme at the Museu do Homem,  in Paris, and in 2018 she spent a new period doing new researchs and sharing her learning, teaching Brazilian cuisine. in many of Ler Cordon Bleu's locations (Lebanon, China, Japan, England, France, Thailand Australia) and featuring tapioca as a protagonist. In Brazil, it is the buffet for Cirque du Soleil and other large-scale internationally recognized events such as Rock in Rio.

Today, this Bahian girl is a citizen of the world. She lives in Trancoso, and in her house,  the Casa Alma Ninho,  receives for dinner with local delicacies, flying over to take care of its operations in São Paulo.


Connected with the world, she is always on the move, she also curates for Fartura, the largest gastronomy platform in Brazil, and for Itamaraty.


Morena has 8 published books and several projects in progress.


Many articles tell the story of Chef through the watchful eye of journalists.


Brazilian ingredients and French technique.

tv and youtube

Morena is also a TV and YouTube presenter.

Cozinha do Amanhã Eletrolux
Morena Leite sobre o Capim Santo
Morena Leite sobre o Capim Santo
Morena Leite para Lexus

follow on instagram @chefmorenaleite

bottom of page