Gift Guide: The 10 Best 2017 Cookbooks for the Amateur Chef in Your Life

Looking for a cookbook gift for the foodie in your life? Hopefully, a cookbook that they’ll actually use! As it turns out, 2017 has been one of the best years for cookbooks. There are so many to choose from, whether its celebrity chefs publishing their first (or ninth) cookbook, or food writers and cookbook authors focused on cooking seasonal food. It was hard to narrow it down, but we managed to choose 10 of our favorite cookbooks.

This holiday gift guide has something for everything, the baker in your life or the home cook who loves her Instant Pot. Here are our favorite new cookbooks from 2017 that we think you (and the amateur chef in your life) will love.

1. The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Come and Get It! by Ree Drummond

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Amazon

We love everything about the Pioneer Woman – from her new hotel concept to that beautiful line of floral slow cookers. So, of course, we took a peek into her newest cookbook, The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Come and Get It!: Simple, Scrumptious Recipes for Crazy Busy Lives (William Morrow Cookbooks). Her style makes it easy for home cooks to learn the art of the low-and-slow meal.

This book really takes us back to remembering what it’s all about: leisurely dinners with the family, enjoying the food and everyone’s company. Find it here.

2. Six Seasons by Joshua McFadden

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Amazon

Does the food lover in your life love vibrant pictures and eating seasonal food? That would make Six Seasons: A New Way with Vegetables (Artisan) a perfect choice. Portland chef Joshua McFadden creates delicious recipes that are easy to execute no matter your cooking level.

It’s filled with big flavor and focuses on vegetables as the star. Vegetarian or not, your amateur chef friends will love this one! Find it here.

3. Victuals: An Appalachian Journey by Ronni Lundy 

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If you buy one cookbook this year (for your self or as a gift), it should be this one.  Another James Beard Award winner, Victuals: An Appalachian Journey, with Recipes (Clarkson Potter) was voted the best cookbook of 2017 for American cooking. Lundy takes you on a journey of the food of his childhood, the Mountain South.

As you explore his food and learn about its rich history, you can’t help but crave Southern food! Find it here.

4. The Oxford Companion to Cheese by Mateo Kehler

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Amazon

Who doesn’t love cheese? This encyclopedic cookbook will break down anything and everything the cheese lover wants to know. From the history of each type to the way its made, The Oxford Companion to Cheese (Oxford University Press) even tells you all the flavors you may or may not taste in the cheese.

It’s so comprehensive and well written that it won the 2017 James Beard Award for best reference and scholarship book. Get ready to arrange some cheese platters and go dairy (cow, goat, or sheep’s milk) crazy! Find it here.

5. Guerrilla Tacos: Recipes from the Streets of L.A. by Wesley Avila

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Amazon

After all this holiday eating, I think I’m about ready for a taco cleanse! If taco lover in your life agrees, this new book might be right up their alley. Guerrilla Tacos: Recipes from the Streets of L.A. (Ten Speed Press) is brilliant. It offers up a way to eat L.A. style street tacos right from home.

The collection includes traditional taco recipes right alongside caviar tacos, and you won’t miss the meat in his sweet potato tacos with almond salsa.

6. BraveTart: Iconic American Desserts by Stella Parks

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Amazon

If you’re looking to get the baker in your life a cookbook filled with classic American desserts, look no further. BraveTart: Iconic American Desserts (W. W. Norton & Company) is your guide to the most iconic desserts of American history.

Its pages are filled with incredible recipes, alongside historical anecdotes about America’s pastry heritage. It even includes a DIY Twinkie recipe! Say no more. Find it here.

7. Smitten Kitchen Every Day by Deb Perelman

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Amazon

Who doesn’t love the Smitten Kitchen’s Deb Perelman? This former blogger turned cookbook author delivers on a followup from her wildly popular first cookbook with Smitten Kitchen Every Day: Triumphant and Unfussy New Favorites (Knopf). Her simple cooking style comes from being a self-taught home cook.

If you love unfussy style and easy to follow recipes, this book is for you. Get ready for triumphant results! Find it here.

8. Sweet: Desserts from London’s Ottolenghi by Yotam Ottolenghi and Helen Goh

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The latest book from London’s Yotam Ottolenghi trades in his characteristic chickpeas and hummus for flour and butter. That said, Sweet: Desserts from London’s Ottolenghi (Ten Speed Press) is no classic dessert cookbook – ingredients include gianduja frosting and polenta pastry, baked plums and praline cream.

This New York Time’s Best Seller is truly a baking cookbook for the food lover in your life that aspires to take their baking game to the next level. Find it here.

9. David Tanis Market Cooking by David Tanis

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Amazon

When looking for an appropriate cookbook gift, you really need to dig deep into your friend or family member’s cooking personality. Does your amateur chef love cooking from cookbooks, or do they prefer shopping the market and letting the ingredients speak to them? If it’s the latter, then David Tanis Market Cooking: Recipes and Revelations, Ingredient by Ingredient (Artisan) is the perfect Christmas gift.

The former Chez Panisse chef, David Tanis, really knows his stuff. He weaves a wonderful tale of how to use your food knowledge to get the most out of your farmers market haul. Find it here.

10. Dinner in an Instant by Melissa Clark

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Amazon

I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty obsessed with my Instant Pot. I’ve actually bought one for a couple of my family members because I know how much they’ll love it, too! My major complaint, though, it is can be overwhelming with all those buttons and settings.

Enter the best cookbook companion to the famous device, Dinner in an Instant: 75 Modern Recipes for Your Pressure Cooker, Multicooker, and Instant Pot® (Clarkson Potter)This cookbook is filled with flavor-forward dishes you can whip up in an instant! Find it here.

What do you think, which will become your new favorite cookbook? I think there are a few on this list that I might have to buy for myself!

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