The 26 Best Cookbooks of 2023

These gorgeous new titles will inspire and delight your favorite cooks.

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November 21, 2023

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A beautiful new cookbook makes an excellent holiday gift, whether you’re searching for an original present for your favorite home cook, want to impress your favorite foodie, or need some fresh kitchen inspiration yourself. This year’s crop of cookbooks truly has something for everyone, whether they’re a globe-trotting foodie, plant-forward devotee, baking novice or consummate entertainer.


Since founding World Central Kitchen (WCK) in 2010, chef José Andrés and his global network of chefs and volunteers have cooked hundreds of millions of nourishing meals for people impacted by natural disasters and other crises. The non-profit’s first cookbook captures the stories and recipes inspired by the people and places they’ve served, including an allspice-infused lamb Lahmajoun Flatbread after an explosion in Beirut and a Chicken Chili Verde spiked with fire-roasted green chiles that’s become a WCK classic. With its striking photography and first-person narratives, we’re willing to bet that this book will inspire you well beyond your kitchen walls.


Food writer and pastry chef Klancy Miller first founded the magazine For the Culture to center Black women’s food stories and culinary expertise. Her book by the same name broadens this scope with 66 interviews with Black women and femmes, designed to capture their impactful work, insights and wisdom gleaned from various positions held in food, wine and hospitality. There are also essays celebrating formidable Black women in history, including Edna Lewis, B. Smith, Leah Chase and Lena Richard. A few of the highlights among the 47 interviewee-sourced recipes include Krystal Mack’s Hibiscus Honey-Mustard Salmon, Michelle Braxton’s Kale & Fire-Roasted Tomato Acini di Pepe Soup, and Fatmata Binta’s Palm Oil Fonio Jollof.

Send Chinatown Love

Send Chinatown Love was founded in 2020 in response to the pandemic and a rise in anti-Asian sentiment to celebrate and save many food establishments in New York City’s Chinatown. Their debut cookbook captures the recipes, photos, personal anecdotes and heartfelt missives from the people and kitchens of 43 restaurants, spanning more than 18 cuisines and representing 24 NYC neighborhoods. We can’t wait to savor dishes like Golden Unicorn’s dim sum classic Lo Bak Go (Turnip Cake), Thai Diner’s funky-fresh Som Tom (Green Papaya Salad) and Taiwan Bear House’s Qīng Dùn Shī Zi Tóu (Lion’s Head Meatballs), which are equally at home on your Lunar New Year table as they are for a Sunday family dinner. These dishes will taste even better knowing that 100 percent of the book’s net proceeds will be reinvested in Send Chinatown Love’s community-building efforts.


Who better to shake up the weeknight family dinner routine than Iron Chef Alex Guarnaschelli and her aspiring-chef daughter Ava? Blending their love of cooking together and inspiration from their preferred culinary resources (treasured cookbooks for Alex, TikTok for Ava), the mother-daughter duo has created 75 winning recipes, like Swordfish with Lemon-Caper Sauce, Ava’s Cowboy Rib Eye and Baked Fingerling Potatoes (roasted with fresh bay leaves), and the cover-worthy Ricotta-Stuffed Shells (with Ava’s genius roasted eggplant stack and Shallot-Garlic Bread on the side). There are tips and notes peppered throughout that divulge personal anecdotes and cooking advice (like adding water for the fluffiest frittatas, not milk). There’s even a recipe for dog biscuits, inspired by their family dog, Leon, so your furry family member won’t feel left out.


Just turning the pages of this vibrant cookbook sparks joy and an immediate urge to get into the kitchen to start cooking. Author and food TV personality Jocelyn Delk Adams believes that the everyday moments that punctate our lives’ special occasions deserve to be celebrated with as much love, gratitude and deliciousness. Try making My Favorite Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookies to celebrate “an unexpected snow day or a friend who’s feeling down” or French Onion Sheet Pan Chicken to celebrate “the night you book your flight to Paris; Julie & Julia movie night” (we’re sure Julia would approve!). The recipes are all deeply personal and proof that food has the power not only to nourish our bellies and soothe the soul, but to sustain hard conversations. Start with Check Yo’ Privilege Cider-Smothered Pork Chops, to celebrate “the first snow of the season; Kwanzaa; a peace-offering meal after a hard convo.”


Ree Drummond has earned legions of fans for her approachable takes on homespun, comfort-food meals. Now, she’s giving her latest recipe line-up the speed treatment, written especially for home cooks who want to get a satisfying supper on the table in a hurry. We’re willing to bet that the Hot Hawaiian Beef Sandwiches with buttery-tangy tops will be a crowd-pleaser, and we can’t wait to make Pasta with Rustin Oven Meatballs, which smartly cooks the meatballs and sauce in the oven. We’re equally impressed with the Mostly Meatless chapter (a nod to Ree’s vegetarian days pre-Ladd), with bookmarkable recipes like Puff Pastry Quiche and Veggie Ragu with Cheesy Polenta.


Iconic cookbook author and cooking teacher Andrea Nguyen’s latest tome challenges pre-conceived notions that Vietnamese food is all about beefy pho and meaty banh mi with a collection of plant-forward recipes that are hallmarks of traditional Vietnamese cooking. In Nguyen’s capable hands, we feel confident we can master crispy shiitake imperial rolls, make our own DIY vegan fish sauce and find new ways to make tofu exciting (hello Twice-Fried Lemongrass Tofu). And even meaty standbys get a makeover, like Fast Vegetarian Pho doctored up with vegetable bouillon, mushrooms and ginger, or Steamed Banh Mi Lettuce Wraps, a smart way to use up day-old baguette or crusty rolls (oh, and we could put the green onion oil on everything).


Think of this cookbook as your annual insurance policy against getting stuck in a recipe rut. The recipes are organized around simple, seasonal menus of a main dish plus two sides, setting you up for hearty, nourishing meals all year long. Some of our favorite combos include Pan-Roasted Pork Chops with Spring Onion Gravy and a Shaved Spring Onion Salad, aptly filed under “Crisp and Cozy,” and the “Hot and Easygoing” Grilled Flank Steak with Fire-Roasted Potatoes and Bacon-Onion Jam. Desserts and crowd-pleasing cocktails round out the recipes (hello, Miso Chocolate Cake and Cold Brew Martinis!). The book also includes an index detailing which recipes are flour-, dairy- and meat-free, so everyone’s preferences and palates are covered.


Any cookbook that invites ease in the kitchen, sustenance at the table and communion with loved ones is a winner in our book. With Unwind, host and Food Network Star winner Aarti Sequeira has penned a cookbook that’s equal parts comforting recipes and spiritual nourishment. Recreate soul-satisfying recipes straight from Aarti’s kitchen, like Jackfruit Kofta Curry, Dal Makhani (Creamy North Indian Lentils), and Laksa: Singaporean Coconut Noodle Soup. Then, pore over fifty heartfelt devotions, inspirational quotes and selected Scriptures as you gather with loved ones over a hearty meal.


Food writer, historian, cooking instructor and author Sandra A. Gutierrez has united all her talents to produce an encyclopedic tome that manages to feel approachable and utterly cookable. The 300-plus recipes cover day-to-day home cooking spanning 21 Latin American countries, all suffused with Gutierrez’s signature storytelling and peppered with practical tips. Recipe highlights include Tortillas de Nixtamal (Fresh Masa Tortillas), comforting Arroz con Pollo (Chicken and Rice), Arepas Clásicas (Classic Arepas) and Sopa Seca con Albahaca à la Chinchana (One-Pot Spaghetti with Achiote and Basil). Whether you’re an aficionado of Latin American cuisine or looking to broaden your repertoire, this is a must-have cookbook for your library.


The sauces chapter alone in this thoughtful compendium has the power transform basic dishes like grilled chicken, fish or veggies, including Senegalese Classic Lemony Yassa Sauce or the salsa-like relish—esque Moyo Sauce Goes with Everything. Of course, the other chapters—organized by Snacks, Meat, Seafood, Vegetables, and Grains & Beans—add up to an indispensable resource with recipes spanning the diaspora of West African cooking. We’re especially excited to make Root Vegetable Mafé, author Pierre Thiam’s vegan riff on a traditionally meat-based stew made with mafé, a peanut-based sauce that’s one of West African cuisine’s mother sauces. There’s also a section on setting up your West African kitchen tool kit, like a slotted-spoon for one-pot cooking and a couscoussier, a two-part food steamer used for steaming vegetables and grains.


Capturing the cuisine of an archipelago of 17,000 islands with 700 languages and six major religions in one book seems an impossible feat, but chef-author Petty Pandean-Elliott has done it. The book is comprehensive yet personal, charting her journey across Indonesia and to the U.K., where she now lives, and its pages are imbued with the spirit, flavors, aromas and textures of Indonesian cuisine. It’s focused around eight key regions, with dishes ranging from fragrant coconut curries to fortifying sotos to comforting laksas. We can’t get enough of the section devoted to different types of sambal, raw or cooked chili pastes, like Balinese Chilli and Lemongrass Sambal (perfect with Seafood Satay) or Shallot Sambal, which kicks up fried rice, noodles and other condiments. For an ideal weekday supper, make one of the modern, sheet-pan ready dishes, like Chicken with Galangal, Lime, Aubergine and Sweet Potatoes.


This book of approachable Indian-inspired recipes celebrates the flavors and dishes that blogger and author Palak Patel grew up eating, as well as the people and loving hands who prepared them. The book is also liberally sprinkled with inspiring anecdotes, time-saving tips and clever hacks. You’ll learn the importance of a good tadka (a technique for tempering whole spices in oil to intensify their flavors) as well as also how to upgrade canned tomato soup with ginger, garlic and coriander. Recipes are also inspired by Patel’s travels and riffs on traditional Indian dishes, yielding standouts like Crispy Barbecue Chicken Keema Tacos and Masala Pot Pies. And of course, Patel divulges the secret recipes for her legendary chutneys.


With this cookbook, author Yewande Komolafe has developed 75 recipes that not only reflect the rhythms and flavors of her hometown, but regional Nigerian cooking too. We love the sound of the nostril-tingling Peppersoup with Short Ribs, which she says “embodies the playfulness and inventiveness” of Nigerian cuisine. And from the Small Chops section, named for the bite-size snacks that no Nigerian get-together would be complete without, we’re bookmarking Wàrà with Yaji, a spice blend anchored by roasted peanut powder and cayenne (in place of wàrà, cheese curds or fresh or frozen paneer can be subbed in). Besides the thoughtful recipes, what’s extra-special about this cookbook is that Komolafe’s writing chops’ shine with essays that help center ingredients in historical context, so that readers and home cooks gain a deeper understanding of how Nigerian cuisine has been influenced and how it continues to evolve.


Whether you’re a baking novice or pro, this baking book lives up to the promise of leveling up your home baking game with foolproof recipes. It’s also chockful of pro tips that elevate your baked goods, like toasting oats, poppy seeds, and almond flours to supercharge their flavor, or stabilizing fluffy whipped cream with a touch of cream cheese. The whimsical photography is as eye-catching as it is instructional, so your treats will look just as good as they taste, too. Among the 100 meticulously tested recipes, we’re bookmarking classics such as a Red Velvet Layer Cake (it’s so beautiful, it could double as a centerpiece) and original creations like Seriously Sesame Brownies, sure to steal the spotlight at your next potluck or school bake sale.


Lior Lev Sercarz, spice master and founder of lauded NYC spice shop La Boite, has distilled his vast knowledge into a book that is chockful of tips, tricks and techniques guaranteed to inspire better foundational cooking. The chapters are organized around a specific category, such as spices, condiments, olives, flowers, legumes, so readers can easily navigate stocking their pantry and glean multiple recipe ideas for each (like starting your day with a shot of olive oil as he sometimes does!). We’re bookmarking Dolmas, made fragrant with fresh dill, ground nutmeg, and celery seeds, among other spices, Tahini Cookies warmed with ground ginger, and Salt Cod and Green Olive Stew to anchor a table filled with salads and veggie sides.


You’ll never look at camping and gourmet meals at mutually exclusive concepts again. With this cookbook, food writer and outdoorsman Chris Nuttal-Smith equips readers with smart preparation techniques so most of the work is done even before you leave the house. We’re talking Sweet-Tangy Lemon Ribs, Sizzling Cumin Lamb Kebabs paired with Puff-and-Serve Chapati, and Fast Food Shrimp Burgers. Even simple snack recipes have the potential to turn into your next part trick, like Crunchy Rosemary Butter Nuts or Creamy, Crunchy Chickpea Flapjacks, Caio e Pepe-Style. There are tons of smart tips too, like how to roast any vegetable in a foil packet, how to chill drinks without ice and how to make great coffee outdoors.


“I can’t believe this is vegan!” is a line we’re sure Amanda Bankert gets a lot at her Paris pâtisserie, Boneshaker, beloved for its plant-based donuts, brownies and desserts. Even if a trip to Paris isn’t in your future, you can take your tastebuds on a trip with her cookbook, Voilà Vegan. For Bankert, a Cordon Bleu-trained pastry chef, nothing is off limits. To wit, you’ll find your new favorite weekend breakfast treat in Boneshaker Cinnamon Rolls, a showstopping brunch treat in Banana Tarte Tatin French Toast, and win your holiday cookie swap with Soft and Chewy Sugar Cookies. Even vegan riffs on classic French desserts are spot-on and imbued with particular attention to flavor and texture, like Strawberry Shortcake Mille-Fueille or Raspberry-Chocolate Macarons. Besides the clever, creative recipes and the stunning photos, this tome captures entertaining stories and personal anecdotes from Bankert’s perspective as an American expat running a Parisian pastry shop.


Kung Pao Sweet Potato. Hasselback Parsnip with Pistachio Pesto. Pasta with Broccoli Miso Sauce. Poring through the pages of Nik Sharma’s latest cookbook ignites the same giddy excitement as if we were reading a menu at an impossible-to-book restaurant. It’s the kind of genius that makes you wonder ‘why didn’t I think of that’ before making up for lost time and getting into the kitchen, stat. We love that Sharma not only gives us stellar recipes, but the techniques, flavors and inspiration are backed by history and science, giving readers the gift of the sort of foundational cooking that garners the confidence to riff anew. As if that weren’t enough, Sharma photographed the stunning images within and penned pithy, helpful ‘cook’s notes’ to follow each recipe. This is an essential resource for vegetable lovers and home cooks alike.


Baker-Fundraiser Abi Balingit can now add cookbook author to her multi-hyphenate talents. She was first inspired to bake during the lonely work-from-home era of 2020, producing hundreds of “pasalubong” (souvenir) boxes filled with creative, joyful treats that blended Filipino treats with Western-style baked goods, and whose proceeds benefited her community in need. We are here for these inspired mash-ups and mind-bending creations, which manage to evoke nostalgia and novelty in equal measure. Among the highlights are Adobo Chocolate Chip Cookies, Strawberry Shortcake Sapin-Sapin (Rice Cakes), Ube Macapuno Molten Lava Cakes, and Halo-Halo Baked Alaska. We’d buy the book as much for the recipes as for Abi’s touching essays, which chart her heritage and self-discovery through the flavors and experiences that shaped her life and celebrate the Filipino American experience.


This seminal book celebrates the excellence of Black drinking culture and honors its enduring legacy with cocktail recipes inspired by two centuries’ worth of Black cookbooks. The mix of classic and modern recipes are divided into chapters by style, including Fermented, Brewed & Steeped; Batch; Built; Layered; Shaken; Stirred; and Zero Proof. The drinks include stalwart sippers, such as the Absinthe Frappe or the Clover Leaf Cocktail, as well as those destined for instant-classic status, like the Jerk-Spiced Bloody Mary and the Gin and Juice 3.0. Besides developing stellar recipes, author Toni Tipton-Martin deftly weaves her fastidious research—often pulling from her personal collection of historic cookbooks, texts and letters—to herald both unsung forerunners like Tom Bullock, Julian Anderson and Atholene Peyton, as well as contemporary icons like Snoop Dogg and T-Pain.


Adeena Sussman is one of the most celebrated and hardest working cookbook authors in the biz, but as a kid, she always looked forward to the magic of Shabbat, the traditional Jewish day of rest. It remains a grounding weekly anchor in her own family, and she’s distilled the essence of gathering for family meal with smart prep and time-saving techniques—Shabbat is all about downtime, after all. And because food always tastes better and nourishes on another level when it’s shared with friends and family, we’re already envisioning our dream dinner party menu: To start, Slow-Roasted Tomato and Feta Tart, followed by a cozy Fig and Pomegranate Brisket served with Seared Broccoli with Caper Vinaigrette and Moroccan Carrot Salad, plus a spotlight-stealing Lemon Black-Sesame Bundt Cake for dessert.


This husband-wife duo is perhaps best known as owners of the innovative Brooklyn restaurant Shalom Japan. Now, they’re sharing their signature style with a collection of 80-plus homestyle Japanese American recipes that blend Sawako’s Japanese roots and Aaron’s Jewish heritage. These family favorites are sure to be hits in your household, too: think, Omurice (Omelete Fried Rice), Home-Style Matzoh Ball Ramen, and Slice-And-Bake Matcha Cookies. And if you’re still looking for an excuse to buy a hot pot, look no further: there’s a whole chapter on Hotpot and Tabletop Cooking, including a helpful “How to Hotpot” primer and sample hotpot combinations, like Simple Marinated Chicken Hotpot or Pork Belly and Clam Hotpot.


It seems too good to be true, but it’s astounding how mastering a few techniques can wholly transform your home cooking. In her latest cookbook, Maya Kaimal, who is also the founder of Maya Kaimal Foods (you’ve probably seen her sauces lining grocery store shelves), shares flavor-building methods like mixing simple and complex masalas (spice blends), toasting spices or blooming whole seeds in oil, then applies them to all manner of fresh produce and proteins. We can’t wait to add Turkey Keema with Sweet Potatoes and Classic Pork Vindaloo to our repertoire (the pork marinade with a heady masala blend is sure to be a grilling go-to come summer). And we’re sure that Kale Chips with Chaat Masala are guaranteed to be a crowd-pleaser (it’s how she got her own daughters to eat kale!).


We love the notion that the smell of asada is a cloud of joy that lingers in the streets of Los Angeles, a sentiment captured in the text, recipes and photographs of this stunning book devoted to Mexican-style grilled meat. In Southern California, an asada is also synonymous with friends and family gathering to share good times and commune over juicy, smoky grilled meat. The book captures the spirit of both meanings with 100 recipes that go way beyond tacos as well as pointers for capturing ideal laidback yet festive vibes. It’s divided into eight key elements, including botanas (appetizers, like a Cheese and Chicharrón Board and refreshing street-vendor-inspired fruit salad), carnes (meats), mariscos (seafood), side dishes and vegetables, salsas, aguas frescas, cocktails, and dessert. We also appreciate the section on stocking an asada pantry, including an excellent primer on chiles and a guide to Mexican dairy. And time-honored tips, like why you should clean your grill with an onion and the secret to extra buttery guacamole, are worth picking this book up for alone.


Resourceful cooking is an art in Italy, a centuries-old approach they call l’arte dell’arrangiarsi. It’s anchored by cucina povera, or peasant cooking, but the humble ingredients and dash of ingenuity yield soulful and satisfying meals. The book weaves together author Giulia Scarpaleggia’s Tuscan roots, maternal inspiration and smart kitchen hacks, yielding 100 recipes anchored by beans and lentils, budget-friendly fish and meat, veggies, simple grains like rice and pasta, and even leftovers. We’ll never look at canned tuna the same way after making Roasted Red Pepper Rolls Stuffed with Tuna and Capers. And we can’t wait to lean in to cozy season with Onion Soup From Calabria, a rustic Italian soup that Scarpaleggia describes as a supreme example of cucina povera, or Scarpaleggia’s favorite, pappa al pomodoro (leftover bread and tomato soup).

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