5 Cookbooks And Food Blogs To Expand Your Culinary Horizons

If you weren't lucky enough to grow up with a talented chef in the household, you may have entered adulthood without a proper understanding of how to impart flavor into your food. Luckily, thanks to the Internet, there are a lot of blogs and cookbooks available that can show you how to make foods you thought only existed in restaurants, expanding your palate and improving your health at the same time. This video was made with Ezvid Wikimaker.

5 Sources For Delicious Recipes and Food Inspiration

Resource Author
Vibrant & Pure Adeline Waugh
Zestful Kitchen Lauren Grant
Treme: Stories and Recipes from the Heart of New Orleans Lolis Eric Elie
Blackberry Babe Michelle Goth
Heartlandia: Heritage Recipes from Portland's The Country Cat Adam Sappington, Jackie Sappington, & Ashley Gartland

Actually Healthy Bran Muffins from Zestful Kitchen

Purveyors of Natural & Organic Food

Company What It Offers
iD Fresh Food Natural, authentic-tasting Indian foods including idli and dosa batter, paneer, malabar parota, wheat chapati, and more
Cambridge Naturals Nutritional supplements, clean body care, organic foods, and healthy lifestyle supplies
Jessica's Natural Foods All-natural, non-GMO, and gluten-free granola, flour and mixes, and syrup
Wilcox Family Farms Farm-fresh eggs
Bubba's Fine Foods Grain-free snacks using green Saba bananas, nutrient-dense coconut oil, and natural seasonings
NuttZo Refrigerated protein snack bars, and jars featuring blends of seven types of nuts and seeds

Choices For Consumers Seeking Healthy Beverage Alternatives

Name Beverages Include
Essentia Ionized alkaline water with a commitment to sustainability
FitVine A wide variety of red, white, and sparkling wines
Pacific Foods Milk alternatives made with soy, almond, hemp, cashew, hazelnut, coconut, & oat
Raw Elements Matcha, Chai, and mushroom-based tea and coffee alternatives
Elements Truffles Turmeric and Ashwagandha-infused drinking chocolate

Michelle Goth's Bananas Foster Baked Oatmeal

In Depth

Today's home cooks have many resources to help them learn about interesting foods and useful kitchen techniques. Between printed cookbooks and dynamic websites, there's no excuse to keep making the same old meals, with creative gastronomes demonstrating accessible ways to create fun, contemporary fusions of traditional and modern cuisines. Here, in no particular order, are books and blogs to help home chefs acquire new culinary skills and knowledge.

At #1 is Vibrant & Pure, a blog that emphasizes making healthful food in an artistic way. Created by Adeline Waugh, Vibrant & Pure reframes eating whole foods as an opportunity to thrive and create beauty, rather than as a sentence of deprivation. The bright images of Waugh's recipes became a hit online and inspired a cookbook. It's also a lifestyle blog covering topics such as skin, travel, photography, and home.

After curing her chronic acne with a natural diet, Waugh wanted to use blogging and social media to help others improve their wellness. She shared allergen-free recipes such as nutrient-packed smoothie bowls, spicy fried mushroom sandwiches, and crispy turmeric cauliflower. Through Vibrant & Pure, Waugh not only demonstrates how to eat creatively and holistically, but also shares styling and photo editing techniques to make clean eating beautiful and appealing.

Through Vibrant & Pure, Waugh not only demonstrates how to eat creatively and holistically, but also shares styling and photo editing techniques to make clean eating beautiful and appealing.

#2 is Zestful Kitchen. The brainchild of Lauren Grant, a professionally trained food scientist and journalist, it encourages readers to cook healthy meals without sacrificing flavor. Grant has worked for many well-known food publications and shows, including America's Test Kitchen and Better Homes and Gardens. She tests her recipes numerous times to ensure they're trustworthy and easy to follow.

The mission of Zestful Kitchen is to help home cooks make seasonal, wholesome dishes and encourage confidence and creativity in the kitchen. Recipes range from vegetable-focused dishes to heavy meals made light, with the occasional chocolatey confection thrown in. The focus is on mostly nutritious food with some sweet treats, because Grant encourages readers to work toward living a balanced life in all aspects.

Coming in at #3 is the cookbook Treme: Stories and Recipes from the Heart of New Orleans. With a foreword by Anthony Bourdain, the book celebrates the food, culture, and spirit of the famous Southern Louisiana City. Author Lolis Eric Elie was born in New Orleans, and is now a Los Angeles-based writer and filmmaker.

With a foreword by Anthony Bourdain, the book celebrates the food, culture, and spirit of the famous Southern Louisiana City.

Based on the award-winning HBO series, the book explores the Crescent City's rich and varied foodways. Over 100 recipes cover both high and low cuisine, with dishes such as microwave pralines and stuffed mirliton squash. Elie bends the cookbook genre by blending a fictional narrative with descriptions of real New Orleans cooks, and the book features color photographs from the television series.

At #4 is Blackberry Babe. Founder Michelle Goth lives in Kansas City, Missouri, and writes from the point of view of a working mom trying to keep meals fresh and exciting. Focusing on Midwestern basics, Goth helps people put simple dinners together at the end of long work days, and encourages them to make good food a priority.

The blog features nostalgic recipes such as Goth's grandmother's country-style coleslaw, as well as simple, modern dishes like sriracha chicken with mango avocado salsa, southwest quinoa salad, smoked corn on the cob, and candied bacon. Most recipes from Blackberry Babe are designed to come together quickly and are geared toward busy parents.

Most recipes from Blackberry Babe are designed to come together quickly and are geared toward busy parents.

Finally, #5 is the cookbook Heartlandia. It features heritage recipes from The Country Cat Dinner House and Bar in Portland, Oregon. Written by husband and wife team Adam and Jackie Sappington with help from Ashley Gartland, Heartlandia reflects the restaurant's made-from-scratch dining experience and its embodiment of American craft cooking. The book features dishes from the rural Midwest combined with Pacific Northwest style and ingredients.

Heartlandia was nominated for a James Beard Foundation award, and its recipes offer updated versions of traditional American dishes. Readers can learn to make basic buttermilk biscuits, bread pudding-stuffed lamb shoulder, red wine-braised beef, and challah french toast with Maker's Mark custard, as well as the Country Cat's legendary skillet-fried chicken.