If you’re a bit of a novice in the kitchen (hi, me!), you probably cook the same 3 dishes on rotation (baked dinners, pasta and meat and three veg). Cooking like that is fine, it feeds you well enough. But if you’re anything like me, you probably get bored with the same meals over and over again, wishing you had the culinary skills to cook more interesting flavoursome dishes. Enter beginner cookbooks.
Learning to cook a wider variety of meals is easier than you think, you just need the right kind of guidance (and cooking gadgets). Beginner cookbooks from your favourite chef, nutritionists and celebs are laid out with clear, simple instructions, making cooking those tricky dishes you usually reserve for dining out easy.
Everything from how to poach the perfect egg, right through to those mouthwatering masterpieces Chrissy Teigen posts all over Instagram can be found in the below beginner cookbooks.
The best beginner cookbooks
Where Cooking Begins: Uncomplicated Recipes to Make You a Great Cook was $49.99, now $37.75 (save $12.24)
This beginners cookbook comes from Carla Lalli Music, food director and columnist at Bon Appétit magazine. Described as a gateway cookbook for novices and anyone who wants to be a better home cook, Where Cooking Begins gives readers a modern approach to shopping, simple cooking methods, and more than 70 innately flexible recipes.
In Nothing Fancy, New York Times food columnist Alison Roman shows you instead how to ‘have people over’, with her signature laid-back, approachable style and visually stunning recipes. Featuring more than 150 all-new recipes, Nothing Fancy includes time-saving tips, like using store-bought ingredients where homemade is unnecessary, batch-made punches for an easy cocktail, and ideas for putting your friends to work in the kitchen.
It’s easy to see why Cravings was an instant NYT bestseller, it’s full of unforgettable, mouthwatering food. From John’s Fried Chicken Wings and the ‘Chrissy’ Burger with Onion Rings to Cheesy Guacamole, Actual Drunken Noodles and her mum’s Thai classics, Cravings is packed full of incredible and unforgettable recipes to make every bite count.
Basic Bitchen celebrates and embraces the basic bitch lifestyle through food, offering step-by-step recipes for the most fundamental (and delicious) of all dishes. Recipes include: Basic Bitch Lifeblood, aka. the Pumpkin Spice Latte, “I Could Eat This, Like, Every Day” Sushi Rolls, A Deeply Personal Cauliflower Pizza and Antidepressant Red Velvet Cake Pops. In addition to these easy, fun, and flavourful crowd-pleasing recipes, Chowhound editor Joey Skladany provides tips and tricks for cooking basics, such as how to build a pantry and cooking tools that every chef needs. Take your cooking skills beyond the microwave and make meals all of your friends will enjoy.
If you’re a fan of the lifestyle show ‘Fixer Upper’, you probably already know who Joanna Gains is. The Magnolia Table is her first collection of recipes made for good ol’ fashion home cooking. It’s a collection of meals made for families. They’re easy, delicious and belly warming.
Chef and writer Samin Nosrat has taught everyone from professional chefs to middle school kids to cook using her revolutionary, yet simple, philosophy. Master the use of just four elements — Salt, which enhances flavour; Fat, which delivers flavour and generates texture; Acid, which balances flavour; and Heat, which ultimately determines the texture of food — and anything you cook will be delicious. By explaining the hows and whys of good cooking, Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat will teach and inspire a new generation of cooks how to confidently make better decisions in the kitchen and cook delicious meals with any ingredients, anywhere, at any time.
With 100 delicious recipes to make meals for yourself, Klancy Miller is here to show you that cooking for one is something to embrace. While making single servings from other cookbooks means scaling down ingredients, adjusting cooking times, or being stuck with leftovers, ‘Cooking Solo’ gives readers just what they need to make a delicious meal just for themselves. Recipes include yummy meals like Tahitian Noodle Sandwich, Smoked Duck Breast Salad, Spicy Pork Burger with Coconut, and Mackerel with Lemon and Capers.
Nadiya Hussain knows that feeding a family and juggling a full workload can be challenging. Time to Eat solves mealtime on weeknights and busy days with quick and easy recipes that the whole family will love. Nadiya shares all her tips and tricks for making meal prep as simple as possible, including ideas for repurposing leftovers and components of dishes into new recipes, creating second meals to keep in the freezer, and using shortcuts — like frozen foods — to cut your prep time significantly.
Their motto is, “You don’t have to know how to cook – you just have to love to eat.” The fun-packed Delish cookbook brings the same message to the page and features 175 recipes that are meant to be devoured: Grilled Cheese Dippers, Sloppy Joe Potato Skins, Chicken Parm Burgers, Lasagna Stuffed Peppers, Mint Chip Brownie Cups, Cookie Dough Cheesecake, and dozens more.