The best cooking books 📚

Browse the best books on cooking as recommended by authors, experts, and creators. Along with notes on why they recommend those books.

Coming Fall 2022: The ability to sort this list by genre (signup here to follow our story as we build a better way to discover books).

Book cover of How to Cook Everything Vegetarian

How to Cook Everything Vegetarian

By Mark Bittman

Why this book?

This cookbook by Mark Bittman re-energized the vegetarian movement over a decade ago (and was updated on its 10th anniversary). Think of it as the “Joy of Cooking” for vegetarians, covering all foods and techniques from A-Z. The recipes are straightforwad and approachable, making them perfect for beginner cooks as well as experienced home cooks. Favorites are Vegetarian Pho, Paella with Tomatoes and Eggs, and Curried Potatoes.

From the list:

The best vegetarian cookbooks for easy and delicious meals

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Book cover of The Homesick Texan Cookbook

The Homesick Texan Cookbook

By Lisa Fain

Why this book?

Longing for the food from home yet finding her quest unobtainable to fulfil, Lisa Fain, a 7th generation Texan, took matters into her own hands and began exploring ways to recreate Tex-Mex dishes in her NYC apartment. From this process a cookbook was born. The Homesick Texan is for every armchair traveler who wants to recreate a little bit of Texas, not matter where they may be at the moment.

From the list:

The best books on southwestern regional home cooking

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Book cover of A Domestic Cook Book: Containing a Careful Selection of Useful Receipts for the Kitchen

A Domestic Cook Book: Containing a Careful Selection of Useful Receipts for the Kitchen

By Malinda Russell

Why this book?

Until 2000, What Mrs. Fisher Knows About Old Southern Cooking (1881) was considered the first cookbook authored by a Black American. It was then that historians chanced upon an incredibly lucky finding: a copy of A Domestic Cookbook at the bottom of a box. As far as we know, there’s only ONE copy left of this little 39-page collection of recipes, which was first published in 1866.

Historians and researchers have delved deep into the mystery of author Malinda Russell, but we barely know more than she tells us in her introduction -- a life story laid out in stark,…

From the list:

The best books on food and cooking in Victorian America

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Book cover of Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat: Mastering the Elements of Good Cooking

Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat: Mastering the Elements of Good Cooking

By Samin Nosrat

Why this book?

Another book that has no cocktail recipes but one that we think is a must-read for anyone trying to improve their ability at making cocktails, or cooking skills for that matter.

Samin helps readers understand four key principles when it comes to cooking ingredients for recipes and mastering these principles, as with the fermentation book, will help you understand why ingredients react a certain way or influence a drink in a certain way.

From the list:

The best books to improve cocktail making

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Book cover of The Redwall Cookbook

The Redwall Cookbook

By Brian Jacques

Why this book?

This little cookbook is beautifully illustrated and quite simply, magical. Fans of The Redwall series know that it was filled with delightful feasts made and enjoyed by its equally delightful woodland characters. The recipes in this book are based on the novels and arranged by seasons, which I find really immersive and fun. A sip of Strawberry Fizz in the summertime, a gulp of spicy hotroot soup in winter… It really makes you feel like a fieldmouse nestled in your cozy little burrow.

From the list:

The best cookbooks written by storytellers

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Book cover of Small Victories: Recipes, Advice + Hundreds of Ideas for Home Cooking Triumphs

Small Victories: Recipes, Advice + Hundreds of Ideas for Home Cooking Triumphs

By Julia Turshen

Why this book?

The premise behind this jubilant and personal collection is that cooking is "simply a huge and often very fun puzzle of piecing together techniques with different ingredients." Throughout the 98 recipes (everything from breakfast to mains, from drinks to dessert), Turshen highlights essential techniques (labeled as "small victories") and then offers inventive ideas and inspirations for creating other dishes (called "spin-offs"). It's a cookbook designed for anyone looking to become a more relaxed, confident, and creative cook. Turshen's love for cooking and feeding others is infectious, and her down-to-earth approach makes it easy to be swept along. 

From the list:

The best cookbooks for inspiration and instruction for everyday meals

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