Best Baking Cookbooks

A limited list of best baking cookbooks. Learn how to make your own bread or bake the best pizza's and much more.
Looking for inspiration for the holidays? Check out our list of best holiday cookbooks.

Top Ten Best Baking Cookbooks

1
Ken Forkish
September 18, 2012
Best Baking Cookbooks: Flour Water Salt Yeast: The Fundamentals of Artisan Bread and Pizza

The Fundamentals of Artisan Bread and Pizza

From Portland's most acclaimed and beloved baker comes this must-have baking guide, featuring recipes for world-class breads and pizzas and a variety of schedules suited for the home baker.

There are few things more satisfying than biting into a freshly made, crispy-on-the-outside, soft-and-supple-on-the-inside slice of perfectly baked bread. For Portland-based baker Ken Forkish, well-made bread is more than just a pleasure—it is a passion that has led him to create some of the best and most critically lauded breads and pizzas in the country.

In Flour Water Salt Yeast, Forkish translates his obsessively honed craft into scores of recipes for rustic boules and Neapolitan-style pizzas, all suited for the home baker. Forkish developed and tested all of the recipes in his home oven, and his impeccable formulas and clear instructions result in top-quality artisan breads and pizzas that stand up against those sold in the best bakeries anywhere.

Whether you’re a total beginner or a serious baker, Flour Water Salt Yeast has a recipe that suits your skill level and time constraints: Start with a straight dough and have fresh bread ready by supper time, or explore pre-ferments with a bread that uses biga or poolish. If you’re ready to take your baking to the next level, follow Forkish’s step-by-step guide to making a levain starter with only flour and water, and be amazed by the delicious complexity of your naturally leavened bread. Pizza lovers can experiment with a variety of doughs and sauces to create the perfect pie using either a pizza stone or a cast-iron skillet. 

Flour Water Salt Yeast is more than just a collection of recipes for amazing bread and pizza—it offers a complete baking education, with a thorough yet accessible explanation of the tools and techniques that set artisan bread apart. Featuring a tutorial on baker’s percentages, advice for manipulating ingredients ratios to create custom doughs, tips for adapting bread baking schedules to fit your day-to-day life, and an entire chapter that demystifies the levain-making process, Flour Water Salt Yeast is an indispensable resource for bakers who want to make their daily bread exceptional bread.

2
Rose Levy Beranbaum
September 20, 1988
The Cake Bible

This is the classic cake cookbook that enables anyone to make delicious, exquisite cakes. As a writer for food magazines, women's magazines, and newspapers, including The New York Times, Rose Levy Beranbaum's trademark is her ability to reduce the most complex techniques to easy-to-follow recipes. Rose makes baking a joy. This is the definitive work on cakes by the country's top cake baker. (2017 inductee into the Int'l Assoc. of Culinary Professionals Culinary Classics Hall of Fame)

The Cake Bible shows how to:

  • Mix a buttery, tender layer cake in under five minutes with perfect results every time
  • Make the most fabulous chocolate cake you ever imagined with just three ingredients
  • Find recipes for every major type of cake, from pancakes to four-tiered wedding cakes
  • Make cakes with less sugar but maximum flavor and texture
  • Make many low- to no- cholesterol, low-saturated-fat recipes
3
Reese Witherspoon
September 18, 2018
Whiskey in a Teacup What Growing Up in the South Taught Me About Life, Love, and Baking Biscuits

What Growing Up in the South Taught Me About Life, Love, and Baking Biscuits

Academy Award–winning actress, producer, and entrepreneur Reese Witherspoon invites you into her world, where she infuses the southern style, parties, and traditions she loves with contemporary flair and charm.

Reese Witherspoon’s grandmother Dorothea always said that a combination of beauty and strength made southern women “whiskey in a teacup.” We may be delicate and ornamental on the outside, she said, but inside we’re strong and fiery.

Reese’s southern heritage informs her whole life, and she loves sharing the joys of southern living with practically everyone she meets. She takes the South wherever she goes with bluegrass, big holiday parties, and plenty of Dorothea’s fried chicken. It’s reflected in how she entertains, decorates her home, and makes holidays special for her kids—not to mention how she talks, dances, and does her hair (in these pages, you will learn Reese’s fail-proof, only slightly insane hot-roller technique). Reese loves sharing Dorothea’s most delicious recipes as well as her favorite southern traditions, from midnight barn parties to backyard bridal showers, magical Christmas mornings to rollicking honky-tonks.

It’s easy to bring a little bit of Reese’s world into your home, no matter where you live. After all, there’s a southern side to every place in the world, right?

4
Beth Hensperger
April 30, 2000
The Bread Lover's Bread Machine Cookbook: A Master Baker's 300 Favorite Recipes for Perfect-Every-Time Bread-From Every Kind of Machine

A Master Baker's 300 Favorite Recipes for Perfect-Every-Time Bread-From Every Kind of Machine

Can the incomparable taste, texture, and aroma of handcrafted bread from a neighborhood bakery be reproduced in a bread machine? When Beth Hensperger, one of America's most respected authorities on bread, first set out to try, she had doubts. Then she spent hundreds of hours testing all kinds of breads in a bread maker, and her answer turned out to be a resounding "Yes!"

In this big and bountiful book full of more than 300 recipes, she reveals all the simple secrets for perfect bread, every time. No matter how you slice it, Beth's brilliant recipes add up to a lifetime of fun with your bread machine!

Recipes include:

  • Whole Wheat Bread
  • Gluten Free Bread
  • Sourdough Bread
  • Nut Bread
  • Cheese Bread
  • Pizza and Focaccia
  • Coffee Cakes and Sweet Roll
  • Chocolate Bread
5
Kate McDermott
October 4, 2016
Art of the Pie: A Practical Guide to Homemade Crusts, Fillings, and Life

A Practical Guide to Homemade Crusts, Fillings, and Life

“A new baking bible.” (*Wall Street Journal)

Kate McDermott, who learned to make pie from her Iowa grandmother, has taught the time-honored craft of pie-making to thousands of people. Here she shares her secrets to great crusts (including gluten-free options), fabulous fillings, and to living a good life. This is the only PIE cookbook you need.

75 color photographs

6
Chloe Coscarelli
February 19, 2013
Chloe's Vegan Desserts: More than 100 Exciting New Recipes for Cookies and Pies, Tarts and Cobblers, Cupcakes and Cakes--and More!

More than 100 Exciting New Recipes for Cookies and Pies, Tarts and Cobblers, Cupcakes and Cakes--and More!

The first vegan winner of Cupcake Wars—and of any reality cooking show!—Chef Chloe, author of the popular Chloe’s Kitchen, brings her signature creativity and fun to the best part of every meal: Dessert!

CHEF CHLOE’S first all-dessert cookbook, Chloe’s Vegan Desserts, will satisfy your sweet tooth from morning to night with more than 100 recipes for cakes and cupcakes, ice cream and doughnuts and pies—oh my! And you just will not believe these delicious dishes are vegan. 

You can start the day with New York–Style Crumb Cake, light and zesty Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins, luscious Chocolate Babka, or decadent Tiramisu Pancakes (topped with a dollop of cool Coconut Whipped Cream). Here, too, are more than a dozen inventive, innovative, irresistible cupcake recipes, including Chloe’s Cupcake Wars’ Award-Winning Chocolate Orange Cupcakes with Candied Orange Peel, saffron- and cardamom-spiced Bollywood Cupcakes, and rich and boozy Chocolate Beer Cupcakes with Irish Whiskey Buttercream. 

Chloe’s got you covered for the holidays with her Easy Apple Pie and Absolutely Perfect Pumpkin Pie, Holiday Trifle, Nuts for Hot Cocoa, and Pumpkin Spice Latte. She re-creates classic desserts and treats from Chocolate Chip Cookies to Classic Crème Brûlée, and veganizes store-bought favorites with her Oreo-style Chloe O’s, Pumpkin Whoopie Pies, Animal Cookies, and Black-and-White Cookies—which are better (and healthier) than what you’ll find at the grocery store. Chloe also serves up brand-new triumphs like her dreamy Lemon Olive-Oil Cake, Rosemary Ice Cream with Blueberry Sauce, Coconut Cream Pie, Chocolate Cream Pie, Coconut Sorbet with Cashew Brittle, and good-to-the-last-drop milkshakes. Who can possibly resist? 

Go ahead and lick that spoon—there are no worries when you bake vegan! With gorgeous color photography, clever tips, and a comprehensive section on vegan baking basics to get you started, Chloe’s Vegan Desserts will be your new vegan dessert bible.

7
Martha Stewart Living
September 24, 2013
Best Baking Cookbooks: Martha Stewart's Cakes: Our First-Ever Book of Bundts, Loaves, Layers, Coffee Cakes, and more

Our First-Ever Book of Bundts, Loaves, Layers, Coffee Cakes, and more

A one-stop resource for cakes--birthday, chocolate, coffee, Bundt, upside-down, loaf, and more. From pound cake and angel food (with many variations) to genoise and streusel-topped, from comfort classics like red velvet, six-layer coconut, rich chocolate, lemon meringue, and cheesecake to sophisticated grown-up fare including chiffon cakes and tortes with luscious fruits, these 150 recipes and color photographs cover techniques, decorating, and gifting ideas for every taste and occasion, whether no-fuss or fancy.

Baking trends come and go, but cakes are timeless. From the editors and photographers of Martha Stewart Living, Cakes includes classics (German Chocolate, New York-Style Cheesecake), crowd-pleasers (Baked Alaska, Hummingbird), and cakes with unique, sophisticated flavors and embellishments (Pecan Torte with Lemon Curd, Saffron-Scented Pear Upside-Down Cake). Whether you need a birthday cake (for any age!), have bake-sale duty, want a travel-friendly coffee cake, or seek to impress at a dinner party or with a handmade gift, Martha Stewart's Cakes has more than 150 cakes plus ideas for decorating, gifting, and storing. Beautiful color photography that shows you just what you're aiming for and dozens of make-ahead tips make baking low-stress.

8
Thomas Keller
October 23, 2012
Best Baking Cookbooks: Bouchon Bakery (The Thomas Keller Library)

#1 New York Times Bestseller

Baked goods that are marvels of ingenuity and simplicity from the famed Bouchon Bakery

The tastes of childhood have always been a touchstone for Thomas Keller, and in this dazzling amalgam of American and French baked goods, you'll find recipes for the beloved TKOs and Oh Ohs (Keller's takes on Oreos and Hostess's Ho Hos) and all the French classics he fell in love with as a young chef apprenticing in Paris: the baguettes, the macarons, the mille-feuilles, the tartes aux fruits.

Co-author Sebastien Rouxel, executive pastry chef for the Thomas Keller Restaurant Group, has spent years refining techniques through trial and error, and every page offers a new lesson: a trick that assures uniformity, a subtlety that makes for a professional finish, a flash of brilliance that heightens flavor and enhances texture. The deft twists, perfectly written recipes, and dazzling photographs make perfection inevitable.

9
Rosanna Pansino
October 23, 2018
Baking All Year Round: Holidays & Special Occasions

Holidays & Special Occasions

New York Times bestselling author of The Nerdy Nummies Cookbook and beloved YouTube star Rosanna Pansino is back with a delicious and inspired new collection of recipes!

In this book you will find more than 85 recipes for many of the holidays and special occasions that Rosanna Pansino’s family celebrates, such as Christmas, New Year’s, Valentine’s Day, birthdays, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, and more. It will be your guide for years to come with fun, creative, and delicious ideas to make and share. This book has everything you’ll need to make a lasting impression. It’s also sprinkled with several recipes that are either gluten-free, dairy-free, or vegan, so there’s something for everyone to enjoy and celebrate all year round!

10
Jim Lahey
November 7, 2017
Best Baking Cookbooks: The Sullivan Street Bakery Cookbook

New from the bestselling author of My Bread: A clear, illustrated guide to making sourdough and the Italian-inspired café dishes from one of Manhattan’s best bakeries.

Founded in 1994, Sullivan Street Bakery is renowned for its outstanding bread, which graces the tables of New York’s most celebrated restaurants. The bread at Sullivan Street Bakery, crackling brown on the outside and light and aromatic on the inside, is inspired by the dark, crusty loaves that James Beard Award–winning baker Jim Lahey discovered in Rome.

Jim builds on the revolutionary no-knead recipe he developed for his first book, My Bread, to outline his no-fuss system for making sourdough at home. Applying his Italian-inspired method to his repertoire of pizzas, pastries, egg dishes, and café classics, The Sullivan Street Bakery Cookbook delivers the flavors of a bakery Ruth Reichl once called “a church of bread.”

11
Tony Gemignani
October 28, 2014
The Pizza Bible: The World's Favorite Pizza Styles, from Neapolitan, Deep-Dish, Wood-Fired, Sicilian, Calzones and Focaccia to New York, New Haven, Detroit, and more

The World's Favorite Pizza Styles, from Neapolitan, Deep-Dish, Wood-Fired, Sicilian, Calzones and Focaccia to New York, New Haven, Detroit, and more

A comprehensive guide to making pizza, covering nine different regional styles--including Neapolitan, Roman, Chicago, and Californian--from 12-time world Pizza Champion Tony Gemignani.
 

Everyone loves pizza! From fluffy Sicilian pan pizza to classic Neapolitan margherita with authentic charred edges, and from Chicago deep-dish to cracker-thin, the pizza spectrum is wide and wonderful, with something to suit every mood and occasion. And with so many fabulous types of pie, why commit to just one style? The Pizza Bible is a complete master class in making delicious, perfect, pizzeria-style pizza at home, with more than seventy-five recipes covering every style you know and love, as well as those you’ve yet to fall in love with. Pizzaiolo and eleven-time world pizza champion Tony Gemignani shares all his insider secrets for making amazing pizza inhome kitchens. 

With The Pizza Bible, you’ll learn the ins and outs of starters, making dough, assembly, toppings, and baking, how to rig your home oven to make pizza like the pros, and all the tips and tricks that elevate home pizza-making into a craft.

12
Ken Forkish
April 19, 2016
Best Pizza Cookbook: The Elements of Pizza: Unlocking the Secrets to World-Class Pies at Home

Unlocking the Secrets to World-Class Pies at Home

In this highly anticipated cookbook, Ken Forkish—owner of the beloved restaurant Ken’s Artisan Pizza in Portland, Oregon; the James Beard and IACP Award-winning author of Flour Water Salt Yeast; and one of the most trusted baking authorities in the country—proves that amazing pizza is within reach of any home cook. 

The Elements of Pizza breaks down each step of the pizza-making process, from choosing a dough to shaping your pie to selecting cheeses and toppings that will work for your home kitchen setup. Forkish offers more than a dozen different dough recipes—same-day “Saturday doughs” that you can make in the morning to bake pizza that night, levain doughs made from a naturally fermented yeast starter, and even gluten-free dough—each of which results in the best, most texturally sublime crust you’ve ever made at home. 

His clear, expert instructions will have you shaping pies and loading a pizza peel with the confidence of a professional pizzaiolo. And his innovative, seasonal topping ideas will surprise and delight any pizza lover—and inspire you to create your own signature pies, just the way you like them.

13
Mark Bittman
October 4, 2016
How to Bake Everything: Simple Recipes for the Best Baking

Simple Recipes for the Best Baking

In the most comprehensive book of its kind, Mark Bittman offers the ultimate baker’s resource. Finally, here is the simplest way to bake everything, from American favorites (Crunchy Toffee Cookies, Baked Alaska) to of-the-moment updates (Gingerbread Whoopie Pies). It explores global baking, too: Nordic ruis, New Orleans beignets, Afghan snowshoe naan. The recipes satisfy every flavor craving thanks to more than 2,000 recipes and variations: a pound cake can incorporate polenta, yogurt, ricotta, citrus, hazelnuts, ginger, and more. New bakers will appreciate Bittman’s opinionated advice on essential equipment and ingredient substitutions, plus extensive technique illustrations. The pros will find their creativity unleashed with guidance on how to adapt recipes to become vegan, incorporate new grains, improvise tarts, or create customized icebox cakes using a mix-and-match chart. Demystified, deconstructed, and debunked—baking is simpler and more flexible than you ever imagined.

14
Stella Parks
August 15, 2017
Best Baking Cookbooks: BraveTart: Iconic American Desserts

Iconic American Desserts

Winner of the 2018 James Beard Foundation Book Award (Baking and Desserts)

New York Times bestseller and named a Best Baking Book of the Year by the Atlantic, the Wall Street Journal, the Chicago TribuneBon Appétit, the New York Times, the Washington PostMother Jones, the Boston Globe and more

"The most groundbreaking book on baking in years. Full stop."—Saveur

From One-Bowl Devil’s Food Layer Cake to a flawless Cherry Pie that’s crisp even on the very bottom, BraveTart is a celebration of classic American desserts. Whether down-home delights like Blueberry Muffins and Glossy Fudge Brownies or supermarket mainstays such as Vanilla Wafers and Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream, your favorites are all here. These meticulously tested recipes bring an award-winning pastry chef’s expertise into your kitchen, along with advice on how to “mix it up” with over 200 customizable variations—in short, exactly what you’d expect from a cookbook penned by a senior editor at Serious Eats. Yet BraveTart is much more than a cookbook, as Stella Parks delves into the surprising stories of how our favorite desserts came to be, from chocolate chip cookies that predate the Tollhouse Inn to the prohibition-era origins of ice cream sodas and floats. With a foreword by The Food Lab’s J. Kenji López-Alt, vintage advertisements for these historical desserts, and breathtaking photography from Penny De Los Santos, BraveTart is sure to become an American classic.

15
Lisa Huff
October 31, 2017
Best Children's Cookbooks: Kid Chef Bakes: The Kids Cookbook for Aspiring Bakers

The Kids Cookbook for Aspiring Bakers

For fans of the widely popular kids cookbook Kid Chef comes Kid Chef Bakes―a cookbook that makes teaching kids to bake a piece of cake

When a child is ready to take the spatula into his or her hands, it can be difficult to find recipes suited to their level, ability, and tastes that also capture their interest. Catering to ambitious chefs ages 8–13, this kids cookbook and culinary crash course shows your chef-in-training what it takes to bake from start to finish. With tips for prepping and setting up the kitchen, tutorials fostering basic skills, and sweet recipes that parents will love, Kid Chef Bakes is a kids cookbook to inspire the aspiring chef.

More than just a kids cookbook, Kid Chef Bakes contains:

  • Tips for Prep and Set-up with the right tools, equipment, and pantry essentials, including essential safety tips on how to use the oven and stove
  • Hands-on Lessons with tutorials for developing basic cooking skills like measuring liquids vs. solids and separating eggs
  • Over 75 Recipes with guidance to hone skills while making delicious treats that the whole family will enjoy
  • More than 65 Photos with how-to shots for instruction makes this a go-to guide and kids cookbook

Recipes in this kids cookbook and learning tool include: Mini Triple Chocolate Muffins, Sprinkle Cake Pops, White Chocolate Blondies, Roasted Strawberry Shortcakes, Little Chicken and Mushroom Biscuit Pot Pies, and much more!

Learn how sweet it is to get your kids excited about baking with this kids cookbook and culinary class from mother of two and author behind the recipe blog Snappy Gourmet, Lisa Huff.

16
Yotam Ottolenghi
October 3, 2017
Sweet Desserts from London's Ottolenghi

Finalist for the 2018 International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP) Cookbook Award for "Baking" category

A collection of over 110 recipes for sweets, baked goods, and confections from superstar chef Yotam Ottolenghi, thoroughly tested and updated.

Yotam Ottolenghi is widely beloved in the food world for his beautiful, inspirational, and award-winning cookbooks, as well as his London delis and fine dining restaurant. And while he's known for his savory and vegetarian dishes, he actually started out his cooking career as a pastry chef. Sweet is entirely filled with delicious baked goods, desserts, and confections starring Ottolenghi's signature flavor profiles and ingredients including fig, rose petal, saffron, orange blossom, star anise, pistachio, almond, cardamom, and cinnamon. A baker's dream, Sweet features simple treats such as Chocolate, Banana, and Pecan cookies and Rosemary Olive Oil Orange Cake, alongside recipes for showstopping confections such as Cinnamon Pavlova with Praline Cream and Fresh Figs and Flourless Chocolate Layer Cake with Coffee, Walnut, and Rosewater.

17
Nigella Lawson
August 24, 2005
How to Be a Domestic Goddess: Baking and the Art of Comfort Cooking

Baking and the Art of Comfort Cooking

Nigella Lawson's How to Be a Domestic Goddess is about not only baking, but the enjoyment of being in the kitchen, taking sensuous pleasure in the entire process, and relishing the outcome. Nigella's deliciously reassuring and mouthwatering cookbook demonstrates that it's not terribly difficult to bake a batch of muffins or a layer cake, but the appreciation and satisfaction they bring are disproportionately high. At last, a book that understands our anxieties, feeds our fantasies, and puts cakes, pies, pastries, breads, and biscuits back into our own kitchens.