Food & Drink

10 Must-Have Cookbooks To Get Your Hands On

By Jessica Best
8th Aug 2019


Make way for the greatest gift to the adult world: the humble cookbook. 

While once upon a time, a good old tomato and cheese toastie may have been your greatest kitchen accomplishment, rest assured, those days are now over. It’s now time for you to step into the world of kimchi croissants, billionaire's bacon, roasted beer tacos and a whole lot of braising and pickling.

Here are 10 must-have cookbooks you need to get your hands on.

Shannon’s Kitchen: Healthy Food You’ll Actually F*cking Eat

By Shannon Kelly White

Shannon’s a good egg. She’s the Donna Hay of not giving a f*ck and that’s exactly why you need her cookbook sitting benchtop in your kitchen. This book is a no-frills approach to taking healthy eats under your wing and make them your...kitch-en staple. Not for the shy type, this gem is packed with an inappropriate amount of jokes and phallic references but on the plus side, it’s a glorious split of breakfast and salad feeds, easy-access ingredients, simple steps like “leave a wee dint in the middle so the centre doesn’t rise like Jesus” and 160 pages of pure comedy.

From Crook To Cook

By Snoop Dog

If there’s one guy on this planet who knows how to cook up a storm and whip up some serious gin and juice, let’s just say it’s probably going to be Snoop Dogg. Throughout this delicious stack of 50 recipes (divided by meals and specific occasions), you’ll be able to drop it like it’s oven-hot in the kitchen whenever you have mates over (or let’s be honest, a serious Sunday hangover) with the likes of baked Mac N’ Cheese, OG chicken and waffles, fried bologna sandwiches and Billionaire’s Bacon, for when you “ain’t got time for that regular swine”.

50 Shades Of Chicken

By FL Fowler

For dripping thighs, sticky chicken fingers, bacon-bound wings and mustard-spanked chicken – you’ve come to the right place. This bad boy is packed with 50 chicken recipes, each more seductive than the last, and will no doubt mark you as the undeniable master of the true heart of any home (the kitchen). Consider this one your secret weapon to leave you armed and ready to take on any situation be it a festive birthday lunch, wintery Sunday roast or a casual snack break to divvy up a late-night Netflix bender. 50 Shades Of Chicken takes food-porn to a whole new level and we’re not even mad about it.

Ottolenghi: SIMPLE

By Yotam Ottolenghi

Is it one of the best cookbooks to hit store shelves, ever? We’d back that. Created by the absolute god of the modern-day culinary world and owner of Ottolenghi delis and NOPI restaurant, Yotam Ottolenghi, this baby is 320 pages worth of the greatest food comas you could ever gift yourself, and anybody else for that matter. Think minimal hassle for maximum joy. Whether you’re keen to get a feed plated up in less than thirty, just have one pot clean and ready to go or have a few days of preparation up your sleeve, Ottolenghi has got your back.

Smiths & Daughters: A Cookbook

By Shanon Martinez and Mo Wyse

Smiths & Daughters is the iconic plant-based restaurant in Melbourne but the brains behind this joint have also whipped one epic cookbook for every level of foodie out there (and by NO coincidence at all, all the recipes just happen to be vegan). In it, you’ll find no hard preaching about peace, love and save the animals but rather seven drool-worthy chapters divided by big plates, small plates, salads, sweets, dressings and drinks all with a little Spanish twist. Think Spanish “meatballs” in a saffron and almond sauce, chipotle cashew “cheese” and “tuna” and green pea croquettes. Now go wipe that drool off your chin.

Thug Kitchen: Eat Like You Give A F*ck

By Thug Kitchen

What’s better than a vegetarian cookbook filled with every profanity ever? Nothing. Enter your new favourite kitchen companion – Thug Kitchen: Eat Like You Give A F*ck. This rude little thing will guarantee you get some veggie feeds in you and is made up of more than 100 solid recipes like roasted beer and lime cauliflower tacos, pumpkin chilli and grilled peach salsa. It’s also packed with all the info and techniques to nail every meal and tips on how to shop juicy on a not-so-juicy budget.

SLOW: Food Worth Taking Time Over

By Gizzi Erskine

For all things slow-cooked, the conveniently titled SLOW: Food Worth Taking Time Over is your proverbial jam. And just on the hush-hush, Nigella Lawson thinks it’s somewhat of a “warming, cosy treasure trove of a book” so in other words, it’s definitely the foodie god’s gift to the modern world. In a kind of nice way, this beauty re-teaches the art of cooking again and schools you on braising, baking, poaching and roasting so you can get big flavours out of every meal. Throughout this guy, you’re in for a lot of insanely good stews, melt-in-the-mouth roasts and rich puddings but you’ll also have some handy guides for making your own pasta, noodles, dumplings and pastries.

NOSH Gluten-Free

By Joy May

If you’re keen to step up your cooking game sans gluten then NOSH is the only tangible hack you need in your life. Work your way through every chapter which spans themes like snacks, quick and easy, pop it in the oven, friends around and desserts and ear-mark the easy-to-read spreads which help you identify which ingredients you can and can’t eat (for our intolerant buddies out there). However, you’ll definitely want to skip to page 68, there’s a tender lamb pie recipe you need to get around and it’s just a casual life-changer.


By Alex Elliott-Howery and James Grant

Alex Elliott-Howery and James Grant are the power couple who brought Sydney its mecca of ethical eating and all things pickled at Marrickville’s Cornersmith. They also mustered up one hell of a cookbook which is a low-key must-have in any kitchen that encourages eating with the seasons and consuming local produce, avoiding processed foods and pickling and preserving to reduce waste. You’ll find a next-level mix of recipes that cover everything from breakfasts, lunches, dinners and desserts to jams, compotes, chutneys, relishes and fermented foods.

Momofuku Milk Bar

By Christina Tosi

Look, if the New York Times loves it, so will you. Light-up your amateur baking career with compost cookies, cereal milk ice cream and crack pie – a sugar slash butter concoction worth every damn calorie. Though the sugar-life never really stops, brace yourself for the savoury sort of desserts too in this one, because everyone deserves to try a kimchi croissant with blue cheese at least once (or twice) in their life.

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Design Credit: Frankie Hossack

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