Best cookbooks for beginners who want to learn the basics


Staying at home is the perfect time to familiarise yourself with your kitchen.

If you’re cooking skills only go as far as toasting bread and boiling pasta, then don’t worry, quarantine down-time is ideal for learning a few new tricks that can transform your basic breakfast, lunch and dinner. Your taste buds will thank you for it in the long run.

There are hundreds of great cookbooks out there to give you some guidance on some basic skills and cooking tips.

While you might not end up becoming the next Jamie Oliver or Nigella, cooking hearty and healthy home cooked meals can be both therapeutic and a great way to bond with your family or housemates.

Here are a few great cookbooks that will help get any beginner more confident in the kitchen during lockdown.

Best cookbooks for beginners

Best for vegans:

BOSH!: Simple recipes. Unbelievable results. All plants

Packed with meat-free meal ideas that prove that being vegan is anything but boring.

Over 140 plant-based recipes are easy to follow and accompanied with colourful images – it’s a cookbook that will keep the whole family well fed during lockdown and you won’t even miss meat, eggs or dairy.

Best for adventurous flavours:

Ottolenghi Simple: A Cookbook

If you’re a fan of Middle Eastern flavours this is a cookbook for you.

Expect plenty of mouthwatering recipes from Yotam Ottolenghi’s inventive and vibrant collection that can be turned around in 30 minutes, with fewer ingredients that work whether you’re batch cooking for the week or whipping up in the kitchen daily.

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Best for complete beginners:

The Roasting Tin: Simple One Dish Dinners

If you have never cooked a meal in your life, this book offers fuss-free and tasty recipes you can throw together in one dish.

But don’t think that one-dish means boring, these recipes from food stylist Rukmini Iyer offer amazing tasting dishes that are both nutritious and fast to make. Winner, winner, chicken dinner.

Best for limited ingredients:

5 Ingredients – Quick & Easy Food

Jamie Oliver’s 5 Ingredients cookbook is a must-have for those who want great tasting food without an endless shopping list of ingredients.

This is great for fast and easy to make dinner ideas covering everything from meat and fish to salads, pasta and rice dishes.





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