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Ten Best Cookbooks for Holiday Gifts

November 9, 2019

A collection of my favorite, go-to cookbooks that make the perfect holiday gifts!    It’s crazy to think we are […]

A collection of my favorite, go-to cookbooks that make the perfect holiday gifts! 


It’s crazy to think we are just days away from Thanksgiving and in a few weeks we’ll be smack dab in the middle of the holiday hustle and bustle. This means two things. Lots of cooking and lots of shopping! And what better gift for the foodies in your life than a cookbook filled with delicious, crave-worthy recipes to make the whole year through? I for one absolutely love gifting cookbooks to friends and family for birthdays, holidays, anniversaries – – any special occasion really. I’ve managed to curate quite a collection of favorites over the years and today I’m sharing all of my go-to cookbooks to give {and receive!} so you can get your holiday shopping started early. Keep reading for all the best books for the cooks, the bakers, and cocktail makers in your life!

Pastry Love by Joanne Chang, A Baker’s Journal of Favorite Recipes

This book is a baker’s dream! Filled with beautiful, delectable pastries, Joanne Chang offers up her tried and true tips for the home baker. Each recipe is written so clearly that even first time croissant makers will succeed. This baker’s guide features delicious treats you can’t wait to bake and share and the stunning photography makes you want to run to the kitchen and crank up the oven.

With recipes like Housemade Nutella Babka, Apple Cider Sticky Buns and Malted Chocolate Cake, this is everything you want in a cookbook and more. I read Pastry Love cover to cover the moment it arrived and Joanne’s enthusiasm and talent for baking shines through on each and every page. It’s one of those books you’ll cherish forever and hand down from generation to generation. This cookbook is a must-have!!

Simple Cake by Odette Willaims

Simple Cake is hands down my favorite cake cookbook evvverrrr!  It’s no surprise that I adore a good lazy girl sheet cake and Odette’s collection of no fuss, indulgent cakes make this a cookbook I reach for often. The book features ten base cake recipes that are foolproof and can be whipped up any time a cake craving strikes.

What I love most about this cookbook, aside from the gorgeous photography, is Odette’s heartfelt ode to the joy of baking a cake. In this book she offers the reader lots of ways to make the simplest occasion feel like a celebration. With recipes like Fall Apple Skillet Cake, Over the Moon Cake and Very Vanilla Cake, this may be the only cake cookbook anyone ever needs. And who doesn’t want to make a Winter Wonderland Cake?? Grab this book and give it to all the cake lovers in your life. And order an extra copy for yourself…it’s a keeper!

Genius Desserts from Food52

The tagline of this cookbook is “100 Recipes That Will Change The Way You Bake” and that’s the truth. Genius Desserts has been part of my personal collection for as long as I can remember and I keep going back to it again and again. The book is a collection of mouth-watering desserts from some of the most beloved and admired bakers in the industry. The photography is simply stunning and each recipe comes with a little background story which invites the reader in.

Each recipe is an elevated twist on a classic and uses either unconventional ingredients or teaches the reader a new baking technique. There is so much to learn from this guide and it deserves a spot on every baker’s bookshelf. Take my advice and start with the Chocolate Cloud Cake…it’s pure chocolate heaven!

Bake From Scratch, Vol II from The Bake Feed

You can’t really tell from the photos, but my copy of Bake From Scratch is full of dog-eared, butter stained, well-worn pages that are proof of how often I bake from this book. I have so many favorites from this book. It’s a classic collection of dependable recipes for cakes, pies, cookies and breads. No special occasion is needed to dive into this encyclopedia of baking wonders.

Each of the recipes in this cookbook are as delicious as they are dependable. Every baked good is served up along with step by step, easy to follow instructions and beautiful photographs that leave you craving all things butter and sugar. My list of favorite recipes from this second volume of the Bake From Scratch series is long. This book encourages the reader to bake, love and share and it’s exactly that message that makes this cookbook the perfect gift this time of year.

The Cookie Book by Rebecca Firth

If you are a cookie connoisseur, this book is for you! A magical collection of the most enticing cookies and bars you’ll ever lay your eyes on, The Cookie Book is always front and center in my kitchen. Becky from @displacedhousewife is a witty and fun-loving self-taught baker and all of her recipes are delightfully approachable and melt-in-your-mouth delicious. She is the queen of muscovado sugar {you have to try it!!} and she offers up the best tips to bake perfect cookies every time.

With chapters titled Hella Chocolate Chip Cookies, Get Stuffed and Dazzling Drop Cookies, I just want to curl up with this book and a glass of milk and ooh and ahhh at the pages from cover to cover. And can I just say, any cookbook with a recipe for a cookie called The Defibrillator is a book I want to own. Wrap up this cookbook with a batch of chocolate chip cookies and it will be everyone’s favorite gift!

Flour, Water, Salt, Yeast by Ken Forkish

Okay, just between you and I, I bought this book for my husband for the holidays since he’s currently obsessed with learning to make the world’s most perfect pizza dough. I’ve been baking for as long as I can remember but making bread is not something I’ve mastered {just yet!}. If you enjoy geeking-out over the science of baking, you’ll enjoy this top-quality book full of all the formulas, how-to’s, tip and tricks you need to bake amazing bread at home.

Whether you are a first time bread maker or a serious baker, Flour Water Salt Yeast has plenty of recipes to take your skills to the next level. I see lots of bread, and pizza!, in my future!

Half Baked Harvest Super Simple by Tieghan Gerard

I pre-ordered this book way back in June and have been waiting eagerly ever since for it to show up on my doorstep. It’s a show-stopper of a cookbook right down to the rose gold paper inlay and stunningly gorgeous photography. From the very first page I want to gobble up every recipe and each one looks more amazing than the next. This book is brimming with unfussy meals and comfort food favorites that will bring you back to this cookbook again and again.

If you are looking for simple, everyday recipes that come together in a heartbeat but still taste delicious, you need this cookbook in your life. There is something for everyone with recipes like Brioche French Toast, Five Ingredient Hazelnut Brownies {sooo good!!} and Butter Roasted Tomato Soup with Brie Grilled Cheese {umm, HELLO!}. Super Simple just shot up on the New York Time’s Best Seller’s List which means all the foodies in your life need this book for the holidays!

What’s Gaby Cooking by Gaby Dalkin

Gaby Dalkin, the cookbook author and popular chef behind What’s Gaby Cooking, is a California girl after my own heart. As a SoCal native myself, Gaby’s book is a testament to exactly how I like to eat. And the fact that she is also not a fan of blue cheese dressing makes me like her even more. Her book is full of gorgeous, inventive dishes that are as perfect for a weeknight supper as they are for a casual summer get-together in the yard. The beautiful, vibrant photography throughout makes this cookbook a real page-turner and the cover is as pretty as can be!

I’ve been fan of Gaby’s recipes for years and if I don’t know what to make for dinner I reach for this book. Her salads are some of my all-time faves that I make on repeat all year long. Grab this book and head to the farmer’s market to get everything you need to whip up a fresh and delicious meal in no time. And don’t even get me started on the desserts. Sign me up for any cookbook with a recipe for something called S’mookies. I’m here for it!


Healthyish by Lindsay Maitland Hunt

Speaking of salads, Healthyish is another book I turn to often when I’m in the mood for a good-for-you, seriously satisfying meal that tastes, well…not so good for you! This cookbook is my favorite for simple, real life food that I can get on the table in less than an hour without a sink full of pots and pans. As a baking blogger, I’m around a lot of butter and sugar all day, everyday. So when I’m craving a little “detox” I reach for Healthyish and I know I’ll be making a meal that not only tastes amazing, but is super satisfying.

With recipes like Miso Butter Toast with Nine Minute Egg and Shortcut Shakshuka for Two, Lindsay’s recipes are easy to prep and never sacrifice flavor. And because we cannot live on salad alone, there’s even a recipe for a Single Serving Chocolate and Peanut Butter Cookie. Nuff said.

The Art of the Bar Cart

It wouldn’t be the holidaze without a few fun and festive cocktails. Toast to the season with this ultimate guide to styling your very own bar cart which comes complete with sixty unique cocktail recipes. This is one of my favorite gifts to give to the wanna-be bartenders in my life. You know the ones…always dreaming up the next greatest cocktail to keep the party going. This perfectly petite book provides all the deets for the basics you need, from glassware to garnishes, to create an insta-worthy bar cart at home.

Every cart comes with a theme to fit a special occasion or to taylor to your personal style with tons of photo inspiration and decor tips sprinkled throughout. This book is a fun pick for those that love to entertain. Wrap it with a bottle of booze and some stylish glassware for the perfect gift. I don’t know about you, but I’ll be asking Santa for a bar cart this year!

I hope you found a few new reads to give to your favorite cooks, bakers and cocktail shakers this holiday season. As well as a cookbook or two to add to your own holiday wish list. The best part is, these are gifts that keep on giving…one recipe at a time. If you have treasured cookbooks that you love to share, leave a comment below and let me know!

*This post contains affiliate links. 

**This post is not sponsored. Just a list of books I love. Links provided direct you to Amazon.com with whom I am an affiliate and receive a small compensation for purchases made. Most are available for next day delivery…perfect for last minute shopping!






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