The most recommended cake books

Who picked these books? Meet our 13 experts.

13 authors created a book list connected to cakes, and here are their favorite cake books.
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What type of cake book?


Crab Cake

By Andrea Tsurumi,

Book cover of Crab Cake: Turning the Tide Together

Leah Rose Kessler Author Of Rat Fair

From the list on upbeat humor on doing the right thing.

Who am I?

Over my career as an elementary school teacher and a science educator I’ve seen time and time again that no matter the topic, learning happens best when people feel positive and engaged. My favorite books to share with young readers are those that capture their attention–be it with stunning illustrations, unusual information, or hilarious situations–and leave them with a strong emotional connection to the characters or story. Now, as I read oodles of picture books for writing research, I keep an extra special eye out for those that leave me smiling and also make me think. Some of my very favorites are collected for you here.

Leah's book list on upbeat humor on doing the right thing

Why did Leah love this book?

Crab Cake speaks to me as a biologist and as someone who cares deeply about the environment. It has a more serious tone than the other books on the list—but only as serious as a book headlined by a baking crab can be. The illustrations of the seafloor community are detailed, and true facts about sea animals are “baked” right into the text. When the undersea community in the story finds itself on the ugly end of humans’ habit of dumping trash where it’s not wanted, the titular crab uses his penchant for baking cakes to bring the community together to solve the problem.

By Andrea Tsurumi,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Crab Cake as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Kirkus Best Book / Publishers Weekly Best Book
★ "Readers come away with the idea that nourishing and supporting one another is the only way to change the world."–Kirkus, STARRED review

★ " [A] wholly original and moving affirmation of one crab’s power to bring a community together."–Publishers Weekly, STARRED review

Crab follows his heart in the wake of a disaster and discovers that everyone’ talents have value when applied with generosity. Feed your craving for a hilarious, heart-warming story with Crab Cake. Humorous, intricate illustrations are perfect to engage readers aged 3-7 while teaching gentle lessons of civic engagement…

Oh No, George!

By Chris Haughton,

Book cover of Oh No, George!

Sheri Dillard Author Of Cowhide-And-Seek

From the list on picture books for preschool storytimes.

Who am I?

I’ve been a preschool teacher for several years, and now I’m a preschool librarian. When I was teaching, storytime was my favorite part of the day, so when I was offered the spot of librarian, I happily took it! I have storytimes in all the classes, which range in age from 1-year-olds up to PreK and kindergarten classes. My favorite moments are when the children are connecting to each other in some way, like sharing a laugh together. Such joy! Ultimately, the best books for preschool storytimes are the ones that a reader is excited to share, with the hope that the kids will love them, too. 

Sheri's book list on picture books for preschool storytimes

Why did Sheri love this book?

Another book about a dog named George! This George is a sweet, well-intentioned dog who is trying very hard to be good. But oh dear, there are so many temptations. Cake! A cat. Some lovely dirt. 

“What will George do?” the book asks. And then comes the page turn. (As you can probably tell from the title, George doesn’t always make the best choices.) The kids will shout, “Oh no, George!” with me and giggle at the silly illustrations that follow, like George happily eating an entire cake. But they can also relate. Sometimes making the right choices can be hard.  

The ending is unexpected and usually starts a lively discussion. I love anything that gets kids talking to each other about books.

By Chris Haughton,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Oh No, George! as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

It's hard work being good all the time - and it's especially hard for a dog like George! A laugh-out-loud, visual romp from the acclaimed author-illustrator of A Bit Lost, Shh! We Have a Plan, Goodnight Everyone, Don't Worry Little Crab and Maybe.

A board book edition of the hilarious read-aloud romp by the multiple award-winning author-illustrator Chris Haughton, this is the story of George the dog. His owner, Harris, is off to do some shopping. "Will you be good, George?" he asks his dog. George hopes he can. He really wants to ... but chocolate cake is just so…

Black Cake

By Charmaine Wilkerson,

Book cover of Black Cake

Constance Hays Matsumoto Author Of Of White Ashes

From Constance's 3 favorite reads in 2023.

Who am I?

Author Engaged literary citizen Westie lover Smeller of roses

Constance's 3 favorite reads in 2023

Why did Constance love this book?

Black Cake is evocative—its title, story, and characters.

A black cake doesn’t sound tasty, but Wilkerson’s layered family drama, Black Cake, is delicious. The cake debuts on the first page, smeared on a wedding dress in the hands of the police. Some weddings are doomed from the start, as if the cake were bad. Black. Lightless. Cursed.

This legendary Jamaican fruitcake shows up again and again as this multi-cultural, multi-generation story unfolds moving between past and present, unraveling deception among Wilkerson’s well-developed characters with intriguing connections.

Black Cake is a fast-paced narrative replete with twists and turns. Can you really savor the page when you’re turning them at lightning speed? Indeed!

By Charmaine Wilkerson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Black Cake as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?


**Featured on Barack Obama's Summer Reading List 2022**
**A Grazia Instagram 'IT' book to watch out for**
**Soon to be a major Hulu series by Oprah Winfrey, Aaron Kaplan and Marissa Jo Cerar**

Everyone wants to discover what they're made of . . . The compelling and beautifully written story about the inheritance of the secrets, betrayal and memories that shape one family for generations

'A story as meaningful as it is delicious. At turns delightfully juicy and then stunningly wise, Black Cake is a winner' TAYLOR JENKINS REID

'A roiling soup…

A Good Bake

By Melissa Weller, Carolynn Carreno,

Book cover of A Good Bake: The Art and Science of Making Perfect Pastries, Cakes, Cookies, Pies, and Breads at Home

Rick Rodgers

From the list on baking for at home bakers.

Who am I?

Rick Rodgers is an award-winning culinary teacher and cookbook writer who has made a specialty of books on baked goods. His book Kaffehaus explores the delicious sweets of the Austro-Hungarian coffee culture. With two of America’s most iconic bakeries, he is the co-author of The Model Bakery Cookbook and Sarabeth's Bakery, as well as Coffee And Cake, Tea And Cookies, and Williams-Sonoma Comfort Food.

Rick's book list on baking for at home bakers

Why did Rick love this book?

Baking books are constantly evolving because of changing tastes and new availability of groceries. What was once an exotic grocery item can now be found at every supermarket. Weller’s book is for today’s cook, but she uses familiar formats for her creations. Her multilayered babkas are like no one else’s. You will learn a new technique or ingredient with every recipe.

By Melissa Weller, Carolynn Carreno,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Good Bake as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From the James Beard Award nominee, a comprehensive baking bible for the twenty-first century, with 120 scientifically grounded recipes for sweet and savory baked goods anyone can master.

"A very good combination: Baking science all of us can understand and a splendid collection of recipes. . . . A baker’s must!” —Dorie Greenspan, author of Dorie's Cookies and Everyday Dorie 

Melissa Weller is the baking superstar of our time. As the head baker at some of the best restaurants in the country, her takes on chocolate babka and sticky buns brought these classics back to life and kicked off a…

Llama Destroys the World

By Jonathan Stutzman, Heather Fox (illustrator),

Book cover of Llama Destroys the World

Simon Philip Author Of You Must Bring a Hat!

From the list on unexpected endings & terrific twists.

Who am I?

Simon is obsessed with picture books: reading them, writing them, buying them, smelling them. His own have been published in more than 20 languages. You Must Bring a Hat won the Sainsbury’s Children’s Book of the Year, and I Really Wany the Cake was shortlisted for the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize. He particularly enjoys funny, deadpan picture books. After gaining a 1st class degree in History, he put his skills to use as a barman at a local pub, grew tired of the owner calling him Andy, left to fail a teaching degree, then turned to writing. He lives in England, although occasionally leaves to buy milk.

Simon's book list on unexpected endings & terrific twists

Why did Simon love this book?

Another excellent title, as far as I’m concerned.

Possibly one of the most bonkers picture books I’ve ever read – incorporating cake, cosmic vibrations, black holes, and cheese-salad sandwiches – it’s an absolute riot, and I loved the twist, which happens a bit before the end but is hilariously satisfying after all the madness leading up to it.

By Jonathan Stutzman, Heather Fox (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Llama Destroys the World as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Meet Llama, a true hero for the ages, who has most definitely driven a bus and who loves cake way more than you.

On Monday, Llama discovers a pile of cake, which he promptly eats.
On Tuesday, Llama squeezes into his dancing trousers, which he promptly rips.
The force of the rip creates a black hole (naturally).
By Friday, Llama will (indirectly) destroy the world.

In their debut picture book, author/illustrator team Jonathan Stutzman and Heather Fox introduce young readers to the hilarious, the oblivious, the apocalyptically adorable Llama.
So grab some cake and prepare to dance . . .…

Victorian Cakes

By Caroline B. King,

Book cover of Victorian Cakes: A Reminiscence With Recipes

Jenne Bergstrom and Miko Osada Author Of The Little Women Cookbook: Novel Takes on Classic Recipes from Meg, Jo, Beth, Amy and Friends

From the list on food and cooking in Victorian America.

Who are we?

Miko and Jenne are librarians who love to eat. Their love of classic children’s literature led them to start their 36 Eggs blog, where they recreate foods and experiences from their favorite books. In 2019, they published the Little Women Cookbook, which required extensive research into the food of the Victorian era.

Jenne's book list on food and cooking in Victorian America

Why did Jenne love this book?

This delightful memoir/cookbook of a girl and her sisters growing up near Chicago in the late 1800s gives us a glimpse of what kinds of things a middle-class family ate--there were trendy foods back then, just like we have now!

What’s it like? Just imagine if you took all your favorite 19th-century children's books, mashed them all together, and edited out everything except talking about cake. Oh and maybe keep in a few things about fancy outfits and picnics.

By Caroline B. King,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Victorian Cakes as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The author recalls her Victorian childhood and shares popular recipes from the 1880s for cakes, doughnuts, pastries, buns, cookies, and desserts

Betty Bunny Loves Chocolate Cake

By Michael Kaplan, Stephane Jorisch (illustrator),

Book cover of Betty Bunny Loves Chocolate Cake

Marc Remus Author Of The Chocolate Clouds

From the list on chocolate.

Who am I?

Who doesn’t love chocolate? This is what I ask myself very often. Being an award-winning children’s book author with a passion for chocolate and sweets, I began to wonder how healthy my lifestyle really is. With the death of an overweight friend of mine and many people around me with weight issues, I felt it was time to write a book about food choices for kids.

Marc's book list on chocolate

Why did Marc love this book?

This is a hilariously funny book for children ages 3 – 5 about a bunny girl who discovers chocolate cake. Besides being an entertaining story, valuable life lessons about food are woven into the plot. This gives the book a deeper layer that can be enjoyed by parents as well. The illustrations are endearing and well-suited for this age group.

By Michael Kaplan, Stephane Jorisch (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Betty Bunny Loves Chocolate Cake as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Betty Bunny is the youngest in her family of rabbits, and she's just discovering the important things in life, like chocolate cake. She declares, "I am going to marry chocolate cake," and takes a piece to school with her in her pocket. Mum values healthy eating and tells Betty Bunny she needs patience when it comes to dessert. But Betty Bunny doesn't want patience, she wants chocolate cake! In this funny tribute to chocolate lovers (and picky eaters), Betty Bunny's charming perspective on patience will be recognisable to anyone with a pre-schooler in their life.

Binge and Sprint

By Naomi Joseph,

Book cover of Binge and Sprint: From Endless Cake to Recovery

Kim O'Hara Author Of No Longer Denying Sexual Abuse: Making The Choices That Can Change Your Life

From the list on abuse survivors speaking candidly.

Who am I?

Abuse as a buzzword is so broad and big. Our stories are so unique in how we were neglected, abused, abandoned, not seen, beaten, or sexually molested, but what also differs is what area of our lives it affects. For some of us, it's our bodies and food. For others of us, it's addiction to drugs and alcohol. And then there is promiscuity or sexual isolation. As a survivor myself, and having written a book that covers how denial was my go-to in my abuse history, I'm always fascinated by the human’s desire to persevere and be resilient. As a survivor, I want to be part of opening the conversation about abuse up louder.

Kim's book list on abuse survivors speaking candidly

Why did Kim love this book?

I instantly could relate to Author Joseph’s list of excuses for why we binge eat as abuse survivors. Her book is relatable for any go-getter who secretly eats an entire cake. Joseph has many life wins, from marrying her true love, to achieving a multi-decade profession in NYC’s public school system. Underneath that grit and stamina lies a long battle with binge eating that started as a young girl to offset the verbal abuse by her father. As an abuse survivor, I disassociated from my body, and Joseph’s lifelong struggle with food helps me to feel not alone. With her book, I am profoundly grateful to know that the voices in my head wired for fear can be turned down. I can put down the brownies and the cake and shine in my life.  

By Naomi Joseph,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Binge and Sprint as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Have you ever stood at the kitchen counter urgently devouring insane amounts of frozen, stale hot dog buns dipped alternatively in jelly and almond butter, while on high alert for approaching humans?

After a lifetime of getting knocked to the ground by the same opponent, a Dark Voice, and then rising repeatedly while praying for a way out, Naomi Joseph wrote the rules of "Binge and Sprint:" Use cake as fortitude to steel yourself to plow ahead, and then keep moving, keep achieving, and never ever let the world see your suffering.

Never idle, Joseph takes the reader on a…

The Birthday Cake Mystery

By The Tjong-Khing,

Book cover of The Birthday Cake Mystery

Alison Farrell Author Of Cycle City: (City Books for Kids, Find and Seek Books)

From the list on for kids who delight in details.

Who am I?

From the ages of 1-4, my son Finn deeply rooted himself into the detailed world of Richard Scarry. These books could be such slow reads that we only needed two of them for long airplane rides. Through Finn’s love of Scarry books, I began searching for more books that delighted with detail. And when I did not see my family’s bicycle-rich lifestyle reflected in books, I created Cycle City.

Alison's book list on for kids who delight in details

Why did Alison love this book?

The characters in this visual mystery can be followed on each spread in a myriad of storylines that surprise and delight. With so many complex plots, in order to truly appreciate this book, re-reading is a must! Whose birthday is it? What is the mystery? Why is it so difficult to make a cake for the party? Fiascos and disasters abound, a classic illustration style that would keep detail-loving kids reading for hours.

By The Tjong-Khing,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Birthday Cake Mystery as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Through a series of intricate illustrations, an animal village prepares for a birthday party and tries to solve the mystery of a stolen necklace.

I Really Want the Cake

By Simon Philip, Lucia Gaggiotti (illustrator),

Book cover of I Really Want the Cake

Lisa Wheeler Author Of People Don't Bite People

From the list on picture books that are even better read aloud.

Who am I?

I'm an award-winning children's book author who loves everything about kid's books--including the smell! With over 50 books on bookstore shelves-- which have been read aloud hundreds of times all over the world-- I feel that I've become an expert on the subject.

Lisa's book list on picture books that are even better read aloud

Why did Lisa love this book?

When our heroine and her little dog spy a spectacular cake just sitting alone on the kitchen table, it's on! The note attached from Mom says "You must not eat the cake." But what's a kid to do? She tries lots of activities to help her forget about cake but will temptation win out? This book is fun, funny, and well written. I love the drama of the situation and the art (by Lucia Gaggioti) is spot on. Fun to read dramatically aloud to both kids and adults. (Pair it with a reading of Green Eggs and Ham!)

By Simon Philip, Lucia Gaggiotti (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked I Really Want the Cake as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

There's a smell I can't ignore.
It's wafting through the kitchen door.
It's time for me to find out more.
I think it might be cake.

How do you resist the most amazing cake ever? Especially when your mum has left a note saying that you MUST NOT eat the cake?

This wonderful rhyming text from Simon Philip, author of You Must Bring a Hat, is illustrated with huge energy and humour by Lucia Gaggiotti.

Blaze and the Castle Cake for Bertha Daye

By Claude Ponti, Alyson Waters (translator),

Book cover of Blaze and the Castle Cake for Bertha Daye

Alexandre Lacroix Author Of Dragons in Love

From the list on bedtime stories.

Who am I?

I’m the happy father of five children, born between 2000 and 2017. So in my adult years, I have quite constantly lived in the company of young children, and I’ve started inventing stories for them. I have now six albums published in France, all of which were originally imagined for my kids just before we switch off the light for sleeping. Born in 1975, I live in Paris, I’m the chief editor of Philosophie magazine (a monthly publication with 50 000 readers), and I’ve published twenty novels and essays alas not available in English. I’m the president and co-founder of a creative writing school located in Paris, Les Mots.

Alexandre's book list on bedtime stories

Why did Alexandre love this book?

Claude Ponti is now in charge of the answers to the children's questions in Philosophie Magazine. Maybe less diffused in the Anglophone world than Ungerer, he’s clearly a great artiste, one of the biggest, with an extravagant and surrealistic imagination, and this album, in particular, is a masterpiece.

By Claude Ponti, Alyson Waters (translator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Blaze and the Castle Cake for Bertha Daye as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Claude Ponti’s nimble wordplay and punning, combined with his phantasmagorical and joyful illustrations, create an endearing gem of a book, bound to be a bedtime story favorite.

From one of the world’s most beloved children’s book authors comes a story of a high-spirited flock of friends building an unusual birthday cake. 
A rabble of soft, golden “chicklets” are awoken one morning to a startling proclamation: they only have ten short days to prepare for their best friend Bertha Daye’s party. It’s time to get to work building a larger-than-life castle cake to house and feed the revelers. Made of chocolate…

Book cover of Jane Asher’s Eats for Treats

Manju Malhi BEM Author Of Easy Indian Cookbook: Over 70 Deliciously Simple Recipes

From the list on easy peasy cooking with easy to find ingredients.

Who am I?

Growing up as an Asian girl in the UK has its ups and downs. I was bullied at school but sought solace in cooking and learning from my mother about Indian cuisine. Now in my adult life, I’ve been awarded the British Empire Medal for cooking services to the community during the pandemic. A straightforward approach to cuisine has won me fans globally and a TV series broadcast to over 80 million viewers cooking British dishes for an Indian audience. After writing 6 books on the subject of easy cooking, I hope you like the choices on my very personal list which are dog-eared and spice stained with overuse and love. 

Manju's book list on easy peasy cooking with easy to find ingredients

Why did Manju love this book?

This was my first foray into baking when I received this cookbook. Although it’s aimed at children, it’s a straightforward recipe book with step by step images of stages in a recipe. My favourite recipe from the book is a Banana Cake. It has splashes of batter on it because it has been baked time and time again and I still use this recipe a decade later. 

By Jane Asher,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Jane Asher’s Eats for Treats as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The author, who has published several other books on cake decorating and children's parties, aims to show eight-to-12-year-olds that cooking can be fun. She reminds them that safety always comes first, and any procedure in the recipes requiring adult supervision is indicated with a special symbol. The 40 recipes provide an introduction to all the basic cooking methods and there is emphasis on the aspects which children like most, such as beating, kneading, rolling out and decorating. All the recipes have been tested by children and are graded according to difficulty.