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Finding the right cookbook isn’t always easy. That’s why SheReads has compiled a list of the best cookbooks to read, no matter your style, dietary preferences, or level of expertise in the kitchen. Whether you have a sophisticated palate, a health-conscious mindset, or a desire to just get creative, these books have numerous recipes for all to enjoy.
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Momofuko by David Chang
In this inspiring and incredibly useful cookbook, renowned chef David Chang details his rise to superstardom and the obstacles he faced along the way. David revolutionized cooking in North America by using delicious Asian flavors and top-quality ingredients to create the best dishes. His restaurants in New York City, Sydney, and Toronto have seen wild success, and this book includes recipes for all who have dined at a Momofuku location or have wanted to.
In Bibi’s Kitchen by Hawa Hassan and Julia Turshen
In Bibi’s Kitchen is an incredible collection of 75 recipes gathered from grandmothers in South Africa, Mozambique, Madagascar, Comoros, Tanzania, Kenya, Somalia, and Eritrea. With stunning photography and beautiful, personal writing, Somali chef Hawa Hassan introduces the women behind the food and shares the stories behind the recipes. With dishes like Ajemi Bread with Carrots and Green Pepper, Matoke (Stewed Plantains with Beans and Beef), and Shiro (Ground Chickpea Stew), this cookbook will whet the appetite of anyone who comes across it.
Red Rooster Harlem by Marcus Samuelsson
Chef Marcus Samuelsson created Red Rooster with the intention of establishing a place that reflected the history of Harlem. He wanted his restaurant to be the heart of the neighborhood, and a go-to spot for Southern comfort and cross-cultural food. Harlem’s traditions are found in Red Rooster’s menu, with dishes like Brown Butter Biscuits, Chicken and Waffles, and Donuts with Sweet Potato Cream. Red Rooster also includes dishes inspired by Samuelsson’s Swedish-Ethiopian roots (Ethiopian Spice-Crusted Lamb, Slow-Baked Blueberry Bread with Spiced Maple Syrup, and sprightly Apple Sorbet with Caramel Sauce). This is a great book for those who crave the Red Rooster experience.
Good and Cheap, Eat Well on $4 a Day by Leanne Brown
Written for those living on food stamp allotment, this cookbook is full of tasty and healthy recipes that will help readers refine their cooking skills while on a tight budget. With over a hundred recipes ranging from Spicy Pulled Pork to Vegetable Jambalaya, and sections on breakfast, soups and salads, lunches, snacks, and desserts, Good and Cheap is the perfect guide for economical cooking. And with every copy purchased, a free copy is donated to a person or family in need.
Afro-Vegan by Bryant Terry
In this collection of creative recipes, chef Bryant Terry reinvents African, Caribbean, and Southern food in colorful combinations that will leave readers craving more. With over 100 dishes inspired by food that has traveled from the African continent, this cookbook takes readers on an international journey. Included are dishes like Smashed Potatoes, Peas, and Corn with Chile-Garlic Oil, Creamy Coconut-Cashew Soup with Okra, Corn and Tomatoes, and Crispy Teff and Grit Cakes with Eggplant, Tomatoes and Peanuts.
How to Cook Everything Vegetarian by Mark Bittman
An excellent option for vegetarians and health-conscious eaters, How to Cook Everything: Vegetarian includes more than 2,000 delicious meatless recipes. In addition to fruits and veggies, this book also covers salads, soups, eggs and dairy, pasta, grains, tofu, breads, desserts, drinks and more.
The Joy of Cooking by Irma S. Rombauer
Another classic, Joy of Cooking is often referred to as one of the greatest teaching cookbooks of all time. Since its publication in 1931, the book has been edited and expanded by Irma’s great-grandson, John Becker, and his wife, Megan Scott, to include six hundred new recipes. John and Megan have also updated each chapter to include ingredients and methods that are more readily available to today’s generation of cooks. Along with a broad and diverse array of recipes, a new chapter was dedicated to teaching readers how to save time and money while reducing waste in the kitchen. A staple kitchen guide for almost a hundred years, Joy continues to be an invaluable reference for cooking.
Feast by Anissa Helou
Feast is a treasured addition to culinary literature with several beloved recipes from across the Islamic world. Award-winning chef Anissa Helou has put together the best recipes for bread, rice, meats, fish, spices and sweets. Along with various dishes from Arab, Persian, South Asian, and North African cuisine, Helou includes history lessons accompanied by maps and engrossing stories. Diligently researched, Feast is a captivating tribute to Muslim culture.
Justice of the Pies by Maya-Camille Broussard
With dishes like Salted Caramel Peach Pie and Fig + Pig Quiche, this cookbook includes recipes for both sweet and savory meals that will have readers racing toward the kitchen. Maya-Camille’s bakery was established in honor of her father, who was a criminal defense attorney with a love for pie. Along with recipes, Maya-Camille also includes inspiring stories of leaders who fight for social justice. Through baking, she successfully encapsulates the importance of human connection and the power that food has to unite people.
The Cooking Gene by Michael W. Twitty
In this special memoir, culinary historian Michael Twitty explores his ancestry through food and attempts to unpack the origins of Southern cuisine. Twitty dives into his family history, describing foods that helped his ancestors survive for three centuries. Using recipes, stories, historical documents, and genetic tests, he takes readers on a journey through Virginia’s battlefields, Alabama’s synagogues, and Georgia’s farms. Unique and illuminating, The Cooking Gene perfectly captures the remarkable power that food has to bring people together.
Dinner in One: Exceptional & Easy One-Pan Meals: A Cookbook by Melissa Clark
Dinner in One explores meals that can be made quickly, easily, and without mess. Almost all of the recipes included can be made in an hour or less and use only one pot or pan. With dishes ranging from Miso-Glazed Salmon to Chocolate Fudge Torte, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. This book also includes tips for transforming vegetarian or meat-based recipes into vegan meals, and makes cooking simple, enjoyable, and immensely rewarding.
That Cheese Plate Will Change Your Life by Marissa Mullen
Perfect for an evening of relaxation and for entertaining guests, this cookbook breaks down the art of cheese and charcuterie boards. Marissa Mullen demonstrates how to craft the best plates by breaking them down into their basic components: Cheese, meat, produce, crunch, dip and garnish. With 50 recipes that are equal parts tasty and Instagram-worthy, Marissa proves that cheese plates are more than just food—they’re art.
To Asia, With Love by Hetty McKinnon
This celebration of modern Asian cooking is the perfect assortment of simple vegetarian recipes that can be made using common ingredients. Hetty McKinnon describes the best methods to use for traditional dishes like kimchi, chilli oil, knife-cut noodles, and dumplings, as well as innovative meals like Smashed Cucumber Salad with Tahini and Spicy Oil, and Finger-lickin’ Good Edamame Beans with Fried Curry Leaves. Inspired by her fond memories and love for Asian cuisine, this flavor-packed collection is the perfect blend of traditional and modern cooking.
Taste by Stanley Tucci
In The Tucci Cookbook and The Tucci Table, Stanley Tucci shared the delicious meals of his Italian American upbringing. In Taste, he shares the stories behind the recipes. This book is full of anecdotes about his life in New York, his work on the movies Big Night and Julie & Julia, his family, and the joy of food. Tucci’s expert storytelling makes this a must-read memoir for anyone who recognizes the power of a home-cooked meal.
First Generation by Frankie Gaw
First Generation is an excellent guide to Taiwanese cooking. Frankie Gaw of Little Fat Boy presents several creative recipes inspired by his multicultural background. He combines classic American flavors with ingredients and techniques that his parents used to create innovative dishes like Lap Cheong Corn Dogs, Honey-Mustard Glazed Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken, and Stir-Fried Rice Cakes with Bolognese. With detailed photos and hand-drawn illustrations, Frankie offers a master class into the world of Taiwanese cuisine.
Very Good Salads by Louisa Allan and Shuki Rosenboim
Owners of Melbourne’s Very Good Falafel, Shuki Rosenboim and Louisa Allan have created their own collection of salad recipes inspired by Middle Eastern food. Very Good Salads focuses on vegan salads, delicious dips, soft pita, and tasty falafel, and shows readers how to make the best of fresh produce. With combinations like watermelon salad with za’atar, radish, and dried pita, these unique dishes are sure to leave readers wanting seconds (and possibly thirds).
The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook by Dinah Bucholz
Harry Potter fans will love this cookbook filled with over 150 recipes that will make you feel like you’re dining with Harry, Hermione, and Ron at Hogwarts. These dishes include Treacle Tart, Molly’s Meat Pies, Kreacher’s French Onion Soup, Pumpkin Pasties and more. Perfect for the holidays, these easy-to-make meals will add a touch of magic to any celebration.
My Mexico City Kitchen by Gabriela Cámara and Malena Watrous
My Mexico City Kitchen is a journey through the very best of Mexican cuisine. Gabriela Cámara incorporates the tastiest flavors and ingredients in her veggie-favoring, seafood-based approach to Mexican cooking. With 150 recipes on basics, breakfasts, starters, mains, and sweets food-lovers have options for any occasion, any time of day. Stunning photographs capture the culture that inspires the food alongside essays that describe Cámara’s distinct cooking principles. With renowned restaurants in Mexico City and San Francisco, this cookbook is the ultimate guide for those who want to create their own delicious Mexican meals from the comfort of their own kitchens.
Mandy’s Gourmet Salads: Recipes for Lettuce and Life by Mandy Wolfe, Rebecca Wolfe, and Meredith Erickson
This cookbook is the ultimate guide for summer cooking, full of simple and refreshing recipes to enjoy in warm weather. Mandy’s salads are famous for their color, flavor, and texture. In this book, sisters Mandy and Rebecca Wolfe explain how to create their renowned salads from the comfort of your own kitchen, along with healthy grain bowls, smoothies, and desserts. Impress your lunch or dinner guests with Mandy’s gorgeous salads any day of the week.
Diasporican by Illyanna Maisonet
In Diasporican, food columnist Illyanna Maisonet shares over 90 recipes that tell the story of Puerto Rico’s diaspora, its diversity, and flavor traditions. She shares classic recipes like Tostones, Pernil, and Arroz con Gandules, as well as Pinchos with BBQ Guava Sauce, Rabbit Fricassee with Chayote, and Flan de Queso. With stunning food and travel photography, this cookbook describes the best of Puerto Rican food, ingredients, and methods for cooking.
Cravings: All Together by Chrissy Teigen
This cookbook by Chrissy Teigen focuses on cooking as comfort. She includes recipes that have been passed through her family and that make her feel better during hard times. With dishes like Cozy Classic Red Lentil Soup, Thai-style Sloppy Joes, and Blueberry Buttermilk Pancakes, this book is the perfect guide to the tastiest comfort foods.
Ramsay in 10 by Gordon Ramsay
A lot of people know superstar chef Gordon Ramsay from cooking shows like Hell’s Kitchen and his travel food specials, packed with unique experiences and often, expletives. But this cookbook should appeal to just about everyone, packed with 100 recipes that are max 10 minutes to prep and 10 minutes to cook. Inspired by his YouTube series, home cooks are challenged to get creative and whip up flavorful dishes in 10 minutes, like One Pan Pumpkin Pasta or Chicken Souvlaki, using Ramsay’s short cuts and tips curated over his 25 years’ experience.
The Homemade Vegan Pantry: The Art of Making Your Own Staples by Miyoko Schinner
The Homemade Vegan Pantry is for all those who are tired of store-bought vegan basics and want to try homemade options instead. This collection of vegan recipes demonstrates a healthier, fresher approach to beloved foods like ice cream and pizza dough, as well as granola and breakfast sausage. Full of vibrant photography, this book teaches readers how to prepare quick meals that are as healthy as they are delicious.
Nadiya’s Everyday Baking by Nadiya Hussain
This unique and innovative cookbook provides recipes for all kinds of days: Chill Out Days (when you want to move and cook slowly), Rainbow Days (when you need more color in your diet), Happy Days (for celebrations), Baking Days (for those sweet tooth cravings), and Everyday Kind of Days (when you’re short on time). With over 100 recipes organized by mood and occasion, this cookbook is sure to become a household favorite for food-lovers everywhere.
Antoni in the Kitchen by Antoni Porowski
Queer Eye’s food and wine expert Antoni Porowski delivers a variety of easy-to-follow recipes in this incredibly insightful and useful guide to cooking. The list includes healthy meals, ideas for those tight on time, and dishes perfect for entertaining. Antoni’s meals are beautifully presented, making it easy even for beginners to look like pros. With many of the dishes requiring less than five ingredients, Antoni proves that simple recipes can also have gratifying and delicious results.
Go Clean, Sexy You by Lisa Consiglio Ryan
Go Clean, Sexy You not only serves up a collection of delicious recipes, but offers a holistic approach on how to live a healthier life—putting whole foods into your body, detoxing every season to regularly cleanse your system, associating with those who fuel you not bring you down, and managing stress with activities that bring you back to balance. A certified health and nutrition coach, author Lisa Consiglio Ryan provides straightforward guidance on how to overcome the obstacles that keep you from losing those last ten pounds, make you feel exhausted every afternoon, and compel you to indulge in unhealthy habits. Lisa’s approach incorporates easy-to-adopt eating habits, free from counting calories and fat grams.
Modern Comfort Food by Ina Garten
One of America’s most beloved home cooks dives into comfort foods and deep cravings in this book of 85 recipes. Inspired by classic childhood favorites, Ina puts a delicious spin on grilled cheese sandwiches, burgers, hash browns and more. These recipes include dishes that can be served for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, as well as desserts and cocktails. Ina’s instructions are easy to follow for cooks at any level, and her delightful comfort foods will make dining with your loved ones even more enjoyable.
The Food Lab: Better Home Cooking Through Science by J. Kenji Lopez-Alt
Culinary director J. Kenji Lopez-Alt breaks cooking down to a science in this book of hundreds of recipes and over 1,000 images. Kenji dives into the chemistry of cooking, describing interactions between molecules, heat, and energy that yield delicious results. He also explores new techniques that often work better than conventional methods, teaching readers simpler ways to make the tastiest dishes. Perfect for all who enjoy classic American dishes and want to improve their cooking skills.
Baking for the Holidays: 50+ Treats for a Festive Season by Sarah Kieffer
Tasty treats are one of the best things about holiday season. Perfect for anyone with a sweet tooth, Sarah Kieffer’s guide to baking festive dishes and snacks will make the holidays feel cozier than ever. With ideas like Triple Chocolate Peppermint Bark, Hot Chocolate Cake, and Meyer Lemon-White Chocolate Scones, these 50 recipes make for excellent edible gifts and are the perfect addition to any holiday party. Another great book from the author of 100 Cookies and the creator of The Vanilla Bean Blog.
Love Your Gut by Megan Rossi
Love Your Gut is a fantastic guide to healthy eating and getting to know what your body needs. Dr. Megan Rossi explores the importance of a healthy microbiome and its impact your metabolism, your immunity, and your mood. This book includes 11 questionnaires that will help you discover which actions to take to improve your gut health, as well as 50 recipes that are equal parts nutritious and delicious.
Trejo’s Tacos by Danny Trejo
Danny Trejo’s 75 recipes are just as layered, spicy and unexpected as his journey. From ex-con to championship boxer, to a Hollywood star to Narcotics Anonymous/Alcoholics Anonymous counselor, he’s also now a successful restaurateur with Trejo’s Tacos. Dive into this delicious tribute to L.A. and vibrant Latino culture with his award-winning cantina favorite like vegan cauliflower tacos, cinnamon-sugar donuts, and carnitas, all while learning about his roots.
Ultimate Veg: Easy and Delicious Meals for Everyone by Jamie Oliver
Jamie Oliver provides over 100 delicious and easy meat-free recipes in this cookbook that highlights all the ways you can use veggies to enhance your meals. These ideas include several inventive dishes like Veggie Chili, Green’s Mac ‘n’ Cheese, and Veggie Pad Thai, with chapters on Brunch, Pies Parcels & Bakes, Curries & Stews, Burgers & Fritters, Pasta, Traybakes, and more. Whether you’re committed to embracing a vegetarian lifestyle or you just want to try something new, this book is an excellent guide to veggie-based flavorful combinations.
Hungry for More by Chrissy Teigen
Model and television personality Chrissy Teigen explores unique and delicious recipes that will leave you hungry for more. From quick meals like Jalapeno Parmesan-Crusted Grilled Cheese to health-conscious dishes like Roasted Carrot and Avocado Salad, this collection of recipes includes something for everyone. Chrissy gives us a sneak peak into her glamorous life with funny anecdotes that make cooking both entertaining and rewarding.
5-Ingredient Cooking for Two by Robin Donovan
This collection of recipes by Robin Donovan makes small-batch cooking fun, easy, and delicious. Efficient and waste-free, these dishes include only a few simple ingredients that provide great taste. Along with the recipes, readers will find budget-friendly shopping lists, tips for meal planning, and easy cooking methods that will enhance each meal. A great book for couples who enjoy cooking together.
Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat by Samin Nosrat
In this new approach to cooking, Samin Nosrat focuses on mastering four elements: Salt, fat, acid, and heat. By explaining the chemistry of these elements and how they interact to create delicious meals, Samin reveals the secrets behind excellent cooking. This book includes 100 recipes that come with several variations, helping readers put these lessons into practice. With amiable narration and wonderfully detailed illustrations, Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat is a great way to enhance your cooking skills and master kitchen science.
How to Cook Everything by Mark Bittman
A classic for many of today’s cooks, How to Cook Everything is a one-stop shop for the best recipes that use simple ingredients and common kitchen equipment. With 2,000 recipes, this cookbook is perfect for beginners and experts alike, and will inspire readers to continuously refine their cooking skills. Mark Bittman takes on a stress-free and straightforward approach, making cooking enjoyable and gratifying.
Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking by Marcella Hazan
One of the most cherished cookbooks of all time, Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking includes almost 500 classic Italian recipes perfect for any occasion. Beautifully illustrated, this compilation of delicious dishes ranges from Tortelli Stuffed with Parsley and Ricotta to Polenta Shortcake with Raisins, Dried Figs, and Pine Nuts. A reliable source for all your Italian cooking questions, this is the perfect guide for both students and professionals.
Dessert Person by Claire Saffitz
We are all dessert people, according to Claire Saffitz, and with these creative and delicious recipes, it’s no wonder why. Claire’s original twists on classic recipes will inspire bakers at all levels to try their hand at dishes like Strawberry-Cornmeal Layer Cake and Malted Forever Brownies. Dessert Person also includes potential problems that may arise during the baking process and helpful solutions, as well as techniques, preparation and bake times, detailed photos, and more.
The Pizza Bible by Tony Gemignani
A favorite cookbook list wouldn’t be complete without a dedicated pizza read—right? Especially when it’s written by the pizzaiolo and 12-time world pizza champion Tony Gemignani. With The Pizza Bible, you’ll not only learn the basics—like the ins and outs of starters, crafting pizza dough, toppings, and baking—you’ll learn how to rig your own home over to make pizza like the pros. Try your hand at nine different regional styles, such as Californian, Roman, Sicilian, Neapoplitan, Chicago, and New York, and discover which might be your favorite.
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