Kitty Crider, who declined to give her date of birth, grew up in Starkville, Mississippi. As early as high school, she knew she wanted a career that would connect her love of food and writing. Crider studied at the University of Tennessee, majoring in home economics and minoring in journalism. She graduated in the late 1960s.
After the University of Tennessee, Crider moved to Huntsville, Alabama, and took a job working as the food editor of the Huntsville Times. When her family moved to Austin, Texas, Crider started writing freelance pieces for The Austin American Statesman. She became food editor in 1979.
Crider’s career tracked the Austin food renaissance. She brought attention to the burgeoning restaurant scene. Crider spent a night in the kitchen of the Four Seasons hotel, reporting a typical Saturday for its chefs, kitchen staff, and servers. She also reported on the food traditions of Austin’s various communities. During the winter holiday season, Crider would load her station wagon and drive around Austin, photographing the favorite dishes in homes across the city. She retired from the food section in 2008.