The 10 Best Cookbooks For Beginners

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This wiki has been updated 15 times since it was first published in January of 2019. Nobody becomes a master of the culinary arts overnight — we all have to start somewhere. Consider cutting your teeth on one of these cookbooks for beginners, all of which aim to please newbies of every stripe, whether you need an education in the basics, a thorough reference guide, or you’d simply like to whip up a sumptuous creation for your family without setting the kitchen on fire. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.

1. How to Cook Everything

2. Better Homes and Gardens

3. The America's Test Kitchen

Editor's Notes

January 24, 2019:

Cooking gets complicated quickly when you're brand new to it, so this list only contains instructive and accessible titles. We've also included various writing styles to appeal to readers who prefer encyclopedic tomes and those who crave relatable, novel-like books. Added a dedicated vegetarian option and Cook's Illustrated Master for chefs who need an alternate approach. Placed How to Cook Everything at the top spot due to its favorable reviews, approachable tone, wealth of information, and realistic recipes.

4. Joy of Cooking

5. The Art of Simple Food

6. Cravings by Chrissy Teigen

7. The Way to Cook

8. The Science of Good Cooking

9. 12 Recipes

10. The New Vegetarian

Gia Vescovi-Chiordi
Last updated by Gia Vescovi-Chiordi

Born in Arizona, Gia is a writer and autodidact who fled the heat of the desert for California, where she enjoys drinking beer, overanalyzing the minutiae of life, and channeling Rick Steves. After arriving in Los Angeles a decade ago, she quickly nabbed a copywriting job at a major clothing company and derived years of editing and proofreading experience from her tenure there, all while sharpening her skills further with myriad freelance projects. In her spare time, she teaches herself French and Italian, has earned an ESL teaching certificate, traveled extensively throughout Europe and the United States, and unashamedly devours television shows and books. The result of these pursuits is expertise in fashion, travel, beauty, literature, textbooks, and pop culture, in addition to whatever obsession consumes her next.

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