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Black History Month Spotlight: Cleora Butler


Mrs. Cleora Butler is considered an unsung hero in the culinary world. She was born in Texas and moved to Tulsa, Oklahoma in the 1920's. Over the course of 60 years Mrs. Butler developed a prestigious reputation as one of the most renowned and in-demand cooks and caterers in Tulsa. She developed this reputation by utilizing and building upon the recipes that were passed down to her by her mother.


In 1961, Mrs. Butler opened up her own storefront, Cleora's Pastry Shop and Catering. Her specialties included sourdough french bread, baked fudge, and many other delicious treats. After five years in business her storefront had to close in order for her to focus on supporting her ill husband. This setback did not stop her from continuing to cook and share her love for cooking with others. Mrs. Butler's last contribution to the culinary community was her posthumous memoir which was comprised of her life stories, menus, and recipes for many a generation to enjoy and share.

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