Cookbooks combine two of my favourite things: books and food. In an effort to improve my cooking skills, I’ve been collecting so many cookbooks my bookshelves and coffee table are practically overflowing. I gravitate towards books that feature simple recipes with really, really beautiful photography. Whether you’re looking to purchase a cookbook to help expand your culinary repertoire, a gift for a food lover, or you’re simply looking for a new book to brighten up your coffee table, here’s a list of beautiful cookbooks that are filled with delicious recipes and drool-worthy photos.
1. Creole Kitchen by Vanessa Bolosier
I found this cookbook on sale at Indigo for $10. The photos available online truly do not do this book justice. Not only is it filled with relatively easy French Caribbean Creole recipes (including many yummy cocktails), the gold detailing on the cover makes this book shimmer on my bookshelf.
2. The Kitchn Cookbook by Sara Kate Gillingham and Faith Durand
Kitchn by Sara Kate Gillingham and Faith Durand is filled with so many helpful tips on organizing your kitchen, storage ideas, and how to cook food more efficiently, you almost forget it’s a cookbook. If you’re a fan of thekitchn.com, you’ll love this book. Tons of great recipes that range from easy to difficult and beautiful photography. It’s currently available on Amazon.ca for a whopping $5.
3. Toast by Raquel Pelzel
This cookbook does not lack in creativity. The photos are gorgeous and the recipes are delicious. Whether you’re a lover of carbs, wanting to up your bread game, or you’re looking for a fun gift, Toast is the book for you.
4. Duchess Bake Shop by Giselle Courteau
The Duchess Bake Shop is one of the most elegant cookbooks I’ve ever seen. Filled with high-end French pastry recipes, you’re bound to impress your guests with any one of these fabulous creations. The cookbook features contemporary twists on French classics plus delicious Canadian-inspired pastries such as Farmer’s Saskatoon Pie, Butter Tarts, and the Courteau Family Tourtière.
5. The Kinfolk Table by Nathan Williams
In a mission to “put the emphasis back on the relationships surrounding eating” Nathan Williams, author of The Kinfolk Table, travels around the world to have a home-cooked dish made by his loved ones and friends while collecting their stories on what cooking and entertaining mean to them. In the 350+ pages, Kinfolk Table readers get a collection of recipes and beautiful images of food, home decor and design. Perhaps the reason I find this book so enjoyable is because the recipe contributors are mostly just every day people. Kinfolk Table has a no-fuss vibe and will leave you feeling inspired to host your next dinner party.
6. Sauce Basics
If you’re looking for a cookbook that has all the basic sauce recipes you could ever need (think hollandaise sauces, pasta recipes, pesto, meat marinades, deserts, etc.), Sauce Basics won’t disappoint. I especially appreciate that it’s truly a simple step-by-step cookbook, with photos accompanying each step which makes each recipe feel incredibly simple. As a serious pasta enthusiast, this cookbook is on heavy rotation in my kitchen.
7. The Love & Lemons Cookbook by Jeanine Donofrio
Love & Lemons is one of my favourite vegetarian cookbooks because the photography is stunning and although most of the recipes are either gluten free and/or vegan, they are delicious and easy to make. Each recipe calls for minimal ingredients and there are many options that take less than 25 minutes to prep and cook. Perfect for the foodie who is strapped for time but still wants to eat healthy.
8. Magnolia Table by Joanna Gaines
Joanna Gaines’ cookbook, Magnolia Table, features 100+ family and classic American recipes covering everything from French toast to fried chicken. The photography are stunning and the recipe are accessible, making this book the perfect gift for a beginner cook.
9. Platters and Boards by Shelly Westerhausen
Platters and Boards is the perfect cookbook for a host who wants to wow their guests without putting too much effort into the spread. In addition to gorgeous food styling photography, Platters for Boards provides tips on portioning, guides to picking surfaces and vessels and a handy chart featuring board suggestions for a variety of occasions (holiday parties, baby showers, etc.)
10. The Seasoned Life by Ayesha Curry
You’ll notice from the photo that my copy of The Seasoned Life has a little wear to it and that’s because I use this cookbook a lot. There is a delicious recipe for every type of gathering in this book (accompanied with a gorgeous photo).
Bonus: Brunch Life by Matt Basile and Kyla Zanardi
Created by the co-owners of Toronto hot spot, Lisa Marie, Brunch Life is filled with drool-worthy photography and over 70 delicious recipes that will have you counting down the days for weekend brunch.
Do you have a favourite cookbook? I’m always looking to add more to my collection. Feel free to share your favourite books/websites/apps in the comments!