The 30 Best Cookbooks for Newlyweds of 2022

Tasty recipes from Dining In, Magnolia Table, and more

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female couple cooking in kitchen

 Stocksy

We all love picking up takeout sometimes, but one of the many perks of living with your significant other is making and sharing homemade meals together. There's no better time to get cooking than after your wedding—you're settling in and testing out all the new cookware and kitchen gadgets from your registry! Whether the two of you are seasoned home chefs or just starting out in the kitchen, cookbooks can offer you step-by-step guides to producing all sorts of appetizers, entrees, and desserts. You'll start to collect an arsenal of favorite recipes that you can whip out for everything from romantic date nights to family brunches.

"A relationship is always nurtured with time and effort from both parties. Whether you’re newlyweds, a parent with a child, good friends, or some family, cooking and sharing life together in the kitchen can be very tactile, joyful, and a celebration of learning and discovery for everyone," says award-winning cookbook author Jenny Jefferies. "Cooking with love provides food for the soul and as Virginia Wolf once said, 'one cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well.'"

When looking for a cookbook that's right for you and your spouse, first consider your level of experience in the kitchen. If you need to master the basics, like poaching an egg or roasting a chicken, go with an option that offers simple everyday recipes to get you started. Then, look for flavors and types of food that appeal to both you and your partner so you can experiment together with tastes you love.

To help satisfy your stomachs and spice up your date nights, we've researched various cookbooks that are perfect for all kinds of couples. For nutritious meals packed with flavor, our favorite picks are Whole Food Cooking Every Day and Six Seasons: A New Way with Vegetables. Craving something sweet? We love Momofuku Milk Bar.

Meet the Expert

Jenny Jefferies is an award-winning author of the story/cookbook series, For the Love of the Land, For the Love of the Land II, and For the Love of the Sea, which celebrates British farmers and the British seafood community.

Read on for the best cookbooks for newlyweds.

Best for British Classics: For the Love of the Land

for the love of the land
Courtesy of Paul Gregory Photography.

This cookbook combines both real stories and recipes that celebrate British farming in all its hardship and glory. The hearty dishes in this book, from real British farmers, make the most of local and seasonal ingredients, creating delicious meals that anyone can cook at home–including Blackbrook beef bolognese, Reestit mutton soup, and more.

Best Heirloom Classic: Joy of Cooking

Joy of Cooking

 Courtesy of Food 52

You might already have a beat-up copy of The Joy of Cooking—one of the most robust manuals for the kitchen—but this gorgeous leather-bound copy really takes the cake. Think of it as a new family heirloom.

Best Wedding Gift: The Newlywed Cookbook

The Newlywed Cookbook: Fresh Ideas and Modern Recipes for Cooking With and for Each Other

 Courtesy of Amazon

What’s better for couple’s cooking than a book based solely on recipes for newlyweds? Check out Sarah Copeland’s inventive, easy-to-execute dishes that are perfect for a pair.

Best for Basics: Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat: Mastering the Elements of Good Cooking

Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat: Mastering the Elements of Good Cooking

Amazon

You may have seen the Netflix show based on chef Samin Nosrat’s modern cooking manual. In both, she focuses on how mastering four aspects of food—salt, fat, acid, and heat—will make you the ultimate at-home chef.

Best for Laid-back Dinner Parties: Dining In: Highly Cookable Recipes

Dining In: Highly Cookable Recipes

Barnes & Noble

This book is for anyone who fears staying at home to cook is boring while going out to a restaurant is not. Food writer and Instagram celebrity Alison Roman shares simple recipes for restaurant-caliber dishes that prove staying in is more glam than going out.

Best for the Instant Pot: The Instant Pot Bible

The Instant Pot Bible

Amazon

If you registered for an Instant Pot, you definitely need this manual. It's going to teach you how to cook everything from a simple soup to an elaborate one-pot chicken dinner.

Best for Farm to Table Food: Six Seasons: A New Way with Vegetables

Six Seasons: A New Way with Vegetables

Amazon


This comprehensive book will change the way you think about vegetables. McFadden, the genius chef behind Ava Gene’s in Portland, Oregon, has crafted original, farm-fresh recipes that highlight seasonal ingredients—the perfect choice for an al fresco dinner party.

Best for Entertaining: Batch Cocktails: Make-Ahead Pitcher Drinks for Every Occasion

Batch Cocktails: Make-Ahead Pitcher Drinks for Every Occasion

Amazon

The secret to stress-free cocktail party? Delicious specialty drinks that are made ahead of time in big batches, leaving more time for mingling instead of mixing.

Best for #Couplegoals: Cooking for Jeffrey: A Barefoot Contessa Cookbook

cookbook

If Ina Garten’s dishes work for Jeffrey, her husband of nearly 50 years, they’re bound to be spot on for your significant other too. In this cookbook by the Food Network star, all the couple’s favorite dishes are featured.

Best for Healthy Recipes: Whole Food Cooking Every Day

amy chaplin
Courtesy of Amazon


This book is a perfect choice if you're looking to add more healthy dishes to your cooking repertoire. The nutrient-rich, delicious recipes make cutting back on gluten, refined sugar and dairy that much easier.

Best for Weeknight Meals: Half Baked Harvest Super Simple Cookbook: More Than 125 Recipes for Instant, Overnight, Meal-Prepped, and Easy Comfort Foods

Half Baked Harvest Super Simple

Amazon

Popular food blogger Teighan Gerard of Half Baked Harvest launched her second cookbook, a collection of simple and quick—but always delicious—dishes that are perfect for busy couples.

Ten Speed Press Jerusalem: A Cookbook

Jerusalem: A Cookbook

Amazon

Every single one of London-based chef Yotam Ottolenghi's many cookbooks has something great to offer, from creative vegetarian dishes to Middle Eastern-inspired sweets. This one, based on the food of his home city, Jeruselum, is chock-full of flavorful dishes, from herby hummus to savory turkey meatballs.

Best Coffee Table Book: Foxfire Living

Foxfire Living: Design, Recipes and Stories from the Magical Inn in the Catskills

 Curtesy of Amazon

The Catskills inn (and popular wedding destination) launched a cookbook/living guide inspired by their rustic surroundings, farm-to-table cuisine, and laidback design. We’re all in for the hosting tips combined with easy and delicious recipes for cocktails, including mint bitters, and dishes, such as thyme and cheddar biscuits and bison ragu.

Best for Family Gatherings: Magnolia Table

Magnolia Table

 Courtesy of Amazon

Leave it to Chip and Joanna Gaines to give us a stellar collection of recipes for getting the whole family together, whether it's two people or twenty. The comfort food recipes are sure to be crowd-pleasers—we’re all about the chicken pot pie.

Best Old-School Classic: Mastering the Art of French Cooking

Mastering the Art of French Cooking

 Courtesy of Amazon

No kitchen is complete without this Julia Child tome. In it, you’ll find instructions, recipes, and illustrations for more than 500 dishes, snacks, and desserts.

Best for Creative Inspiration: Modernist Cuisine

Modernist Cuisine: The Art and Science of Cooking

 Courtesy of Amazon

This award-winning, 6-volume set fuses revolutionary food photography with the science of cooking. This massive collection includes inventive recipes for everything from a simple chicken broth to molecular gastronomy-inspired dishes.

Best for Mexican Food: Made in Mexico: Classic And Contemporary Recipes From Mexico City

Made in Mexico: The Cookbook

 Courtesy of Amazon 

The chef behind contemporary Mexican restaurant Hecho en Dumbo, Danny Mena put together this collection of dishes—from street food to desserts—inspired by his childhood in Mexico City. If you’re one for guacamole and churros, this is the cookbook for you.

Best Unexpected Option: From Crook to Cook: Platinum Recipes from Tha Boss Dogg's Kitchen

From Crook to Cook: Platinum Recipes From Tha Boss Dogg’s Kitchen

 Courtesy of Amazon

Yes, Snoop Dogg launched a cookbook to tailwind off the success of his food show with Martha Stewart, Snoop & Martha’s Potluck Dinner Party. Here you’ll find everything from fried chicken to gin and juice, and it may (or may not) call for a secret ingredient.

Best for Unusual Desserts: Momofuku Milk Bar

Momofuku Milk Bar: A Cookbook

 Courtesy of Amazon

Pastry chef Christina Tosi shares the secrets behind the famous sweets that have gained her a cult following. Think birthday cake truffles, cereal milk ice cream, and everyone's favorite, Crack Pie.

Best for Indian Food: Madhur Jaffrey’s Indian Cooking

Madhur Jaffrey’s Indian Cooking

 Courtesy of Amazon

The grand dame of Indian cooking in America, Madhur Jaffrey is the go-to resource if you want to learn how to cook your very own Dal Makhani, Chicken Tikka Masala, and Carrot Halva.

Best for Science Lovers: The Food Lab: Better Home Cooking Through Science

Forget most things grandma taught you. This book delves into the science behind how to cook things well, including how to get the perfect crust on a rare steak. It dispels some old-school myths and offers new, and simple, techniques to up your kitchen game.

Best for Scandinavian Food: Aska

Aska

 Courtesy of Barnes & Noble

Fredrik Berselius holds two Michelin stars at Aska, his restaurant in Brooklyn, so it’s no wonder his sleek cookbook is just as discerning. Rooted in his Scandanavian heritage, the text feels like Nordic design-meets-coffee-table book, and is just as beautiful in a living space as it is open on the kitchen counter.

Best for Comfort Food: The Dude Diet Dinnertime: 125 Clean(ish) Recipes for Weeknight Winners and Fancypants Dinners

The Dude Diet Dinnertime

Courtesy of Amazon

Popular blogger and chef Serena Wolf admits we all love our “dude food” sometimes—wings, burgers, mac and cheese and other not-so-healthy treats. But that doesn’t mean it needs to be loaded with grease and preservatives. In this cookbook, she gives us plenty of “cleaned up” versions that are better for you, without sacrificing flavor.

Best for Learning Skills: Jacques Pépin New Complete Techniques

Jacques Pépin New Complete Techniques

Amazon

This illustrated guide will literally walk you through the steps to make all the basics, like poached eggs, sourdough bread, plenty of French sauces, and even a puffy meringue.

Best for Southern Food: Whiskey in a Teacup: What Growing Up in the South Taught Me About Life, Love, and Baking Biscuits

Whiskey in a Teacup

 Courtesy of Barnes & Noble 

Actress Reece Witherspoon just may be the hostess with the mostess. She shares her favorite recipes, riffs on entertaining at home, and dishes—no pun intended—on plenty of Southern food secrets.

Best for Ice Cream: Salt and Straw Ice Cream Cookbook

Salt and Straw Ice Cream Book

Courtesy of Amazon

You didn’t think you needed a cookbook dedicated to ice cream until now. Scoop up the recipes behind the cult-worthy Portland ice cream shop’s decadent flavors—think sea salt with caramel ribbons, honey lavender, or butter-roasted chestnut.

Best for Italian Food: Lidia’s Mastering the Art of Italian Cuisine

Lidia’s Mastering the Art of Italian Cuisine

 Courtesy of Amazon

Lidia Bastianich partners with her daughter, Tanya, on this comprehensive and easy-to-understand guide to Italian food. You’ll be whipping up hand-rolled gnocchi and bolognese sauce in no time.

Best for Asian Food: Lucky Peach Presents 101 Easy Asian Recipes

Lucky Peach Presents 101 Easy Asian Recipes: The First Cookbook from the Cult Food Magazine

 Courtesy of Amazon

Chef and Momofuku founder David Chang’s now-defunct—and much beloved—food journal has lived on in this killer cookbook. It’s filled with many of the Asian recipes from the magazine.

Best For Detoxing: Clean Eats

Clean Eats: Over 200 Delicious Recipes to Reset Your Body’s Natural Balance and Discover What It Means to be Truly Healthy

 Courtesy of Goop

Cardiologist and detox specialist Dr. Alejandro Junger has put together a collection of vegetarian-focused, paleo-friendly and grain-free recipes to improve your health and wellness, one meal at a time.

Best for Spanish Food: Tapas: A Taste of Spain in America

Tapas: A Taste of Spain in America

 Courtesy of Amazon

If you love Spanish food, the recipes of José Andrés will become your go-to resource for recreating those favorite dishes at home. The chef has shown Americans how to eat Spanish food, so it’s no wonder that this iconic cookbook, focused on tapas, is still a winner nearly 15 years later.

What to Look for in a New Cookbook

Specific Foods and Occasions

Picking a new cookbook with your spouse can be a fun collaboration. Discuss both of your favorite foods and flavors, then search for books about those specific types of cuisine–such as classic Mexican dishes or French favorites. Need inspiration for hosting a party with 30 of your closest friends? Enter simple hors d'oeuvres that will steal the show or books full of artisan cocktails to impress your guests. If you want to experiment with something new to you—whether it's modernist cuisine, Asian ingredients, or cleaner eating—there are tried-and-true resources out there to help.

Experience Level

Whether you've never cooked a meal from scratch or you're a seasoned home cook, there is a cookbook out there to suit your experience level. Need to brush up on the basics? We recommend going with easy-to-follow recipes and instructions, which you can find in books like Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat. While trying something new can feel intimidating at first, don't be afraid to have fun and experiment! It's a fun way to grow and learn alongside your partner, and you'll create an arsenal of new recipes to make for years to come.

FAQ
  • How can you make a meal at home with your spouse feel special?

    "It is always the company that makes any good meal special," says Jefferies. "However, to enhance that special occasion I always dress the table with a lovely table cloth or leave the wooden table top exposed with pretty floral napkins and a small vase with flowers cut from the garden. You could use clear glasses for wine so you can see the colour and coloured glasses for water like those from Katie Alice. If the weather allows, alfresco dining with candles or beside a fire is always very romantic, and with your favourite and personalized playlist on the speaker, you can enjoy the nostalgia and memories together of places been and time gone by."


  • What are the cooking staples every newlywed couple should have in their kitchen?

    "A newlywed couple, I believe, should have a large, heavy-based casserole dish for making those heavenly, seasonal stews," explains Jefferies. "Perhaps a simple and personalized cocktail shaker, so you can make up your own debut signature cocktail for your friends and family. A set of sharp knives makes work in the kitchen much lighter, and a glorious picnic hamper with a blanket makes for a well-received gift."

  • What are the best meals for couples to learn to cook together?

    "Marcus Coleman, the CEO of Seafish says in For The Love Of The Sea, 'Over the years, seafood has been viewed as a food source that possessed mystical powers; oysters in particular, it is claimed, helped legendary 18th-century lover Casanova,'" Jefferies says.

    "Other romantic food includes caviar, chocolate, lobster, strawberries, artichoke hearts, venison, cheese, and truffles, however, I recommend any recipe that includes your most favourite food to be the best for exploring and learning. There are some delicious and very friendly and accessible recipes in For The Love Of The Land and For The Love Of The Sea. There are beautiful and delicate starters and puddings along with cakes, bakes, and crowd-pleasing mains. Suitable for home cooks of any skill level, this growing collection of story/cookbooks is also the perfect read for anyone who is interested in where their food comes from. For The Love of the Land II captures the UK’s current interest in the provenance of our ingredients, and supporting our local farmers–who in turn look after their environments–has never been more crucial."

Why Trust Brides

Stephanie Cain is a journalist and content strategist in the lifestyle space, who has 14 years of experience as a magazine editor, digital producer, content marketer, and public speaker. She focuses on weddings, wine, food, and travel. She has a long history with Brides, working as an intern for the publication in 2007 and returning to write about weddings in 2014. In addition to Brides, she also covered weddings for The New York Times, The Knot, Hamptons, and Fortune.

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