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Best Cookbooks of 2011

... and even with almost 200 voting lists, there was a tie for first place -  Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi and Momofuku Milk Bar by Christina Tosi.

We amalgamated 195 Best Cookbooks of 2011 lists from TV, Radio, Newspapers, Magazines, Websites, Blogs and Booksellers across the world (there are links to all of them below) to come up with the definitive guide to the best books on food and drink.

For those of you interested in data:

  • From 195 lists there were 1,846 votes
  • 615 different cookbooks made the list
  • 318 cookbooks had only one vote

Check out the Best cookbooks of 2010 and Best cookbooks of 2009 lists.


=1. Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi

This book was also number 6 last year as it was released in the UK in 2010. A collection of innovative vegetarian recipes from the Israeli owner of several London cafes, this is a book that we will be cooking from for many years to come.

=1. Momofuku Milk Bar by Christina Tosi

Momofuku makes it a double whammy - #1 in 2009 with Momofuku and joint #1 this year. Addictive (crack pie) and whacky (compost cookie) desserts have made this book a bakers' must-have cookbook.

3. Essential Pepin by Jacques Pépin

Amazing to think that someone can have 803 favorite recipes, but with sixty years as a chef and 26 cookbooks, maybe it's not such a surprise.

4. The Food52 Cookbook by Amanda Hesser and Merrill Stubbs

In the belief that the best recipes come from home cooks, Amanda and Merrill set weekly competitions to find the very best and the 104 winners are here in this book. This is Amanda's second year in the top ten - last year she was at #2 with The Essential New York Times Cookbook.

=5. Odd Bits: How to Cook the Rest of the Animal by Jennifer McLagan

Whether it economics, complete nose-to-tail use of the animal or just good food that drives you, this book will open up a whole new world of animal parts.

=5. Super Natural Every Day by Heidi Swanson

In this her third book, Heidi reinforces the message from her popular blog 101 Cookbooks, that healthy, natural foods should still taste delicious.

7. The Family Meal by Ferran Adrià

After wowing diners for many years with the inventive cuisine at ElBulli, Ferran now reveals what the staff ate at their nightly staff meals.

8. The Art of Living According to Joe Beef by Frédéric Morin, David McMillan, and Meredith Erickson

This one snuck up on us - the French market style recipes from the Montreal restaurant may well sneak up on you too.

9. The Homesick Texan Cookbook by Lisa Fain

From cooking to keep in touch with her home state, to a wildly succesful blog and now a bestselling cookbook, being homesick has paid off for this ex-farmgirl.

10. Cook This Now by Melissa Clark

As a busy New York Times writer, cookbook author, and mother, Melissa knows about time pressures to get dinner on the table. The Cumin seed roasted cauliflower with salted yogurt, mint, and pomegranate seeds is worth the book price on its own.


Runners Up

Top British Picks

=1. Jamie's Great Britain by Jamie Oliver
=1. Bill's Everyday Asian by Bill Granger
=3. Bought, Borrowed and Stolen by Allegra McEvedy
=3. Ginger Pig Meat Book by Tim Wilson and Fran Warde
=3. Scandilicious by Signe Johansen
=6. Couture Chocolate by William Curley
=6. Hawksmoor at Home by Will Beckett, Huw Gott, and Fiona Beckett
=6. The Family Meal by Ferran Adrià
=6. The Good Cook by Simon Hopkinson

Top Australian Picks

=1. Cumulus Inc by Andrew McConnell
=1. Gingerboy by Teague Ezard and Chris Donnellan
=1. Rockpool Bar & Grill by Neil Perry
=1. Tasting India by Christine Manfield
=5. Dinner at Matt's by Matt Moran
=5. Maha: Middle Eastern Home Cooking by Shane Delia
=5. Marque by Mark Best and Pasi Petanen
=5. PS Desserts by Philippa Sibley
=5. The Art of Pasta by Galletto Lucio and David Dale
=5. Zumbo by Adriano Zumbo

Top Canadian Picks

=1. Odd Bits: How to Cook the Rest of the Animal by Jennifer McLagan
=1. Pretty Delicious by Candice Kumai
=3. Back to Baking by Anna Olson
=3. Chef Michael Smith's Kitchen by Michael Smith
=3. Essential Pepin by Jacques Pépin
=3. Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi

Top Drinks Books

=1. Bitters by Brad Thomas Parsons
=1. The PDT Cocktail Book by Jim Meehan and Chris Gall
  3. The Oxford Companion to Beer by Garrett Oliver et al
  4. The Food Lover's Guide to Wine by Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg

Top Vegetarian & Vegan Books

  1. Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi
  2. Super Natural Every Day by Heidi Swanson
  3. Big Vegan by Robin Asbell
  4. Cook Without a Book: Meatless Meals by Pam Anderson
  5. River Cottage Veg Every Day by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall
=6. Candle 79 Cookbook by Joy Pierson
=6. Vegan Diner by Julie Hasson
=6. Vegan Holiday Kitchen by Nava Atlas
=6. Vegan Pie in the Sky by Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero

Top Memoirs & Books About Food

  1. Blood, Bones & Butter by Gabrielle Hamilton
=2. 40 Years of Chez Panisse by Alice Waters
=2. Life, On the Line by Grant Achatz and Nick Kokonas
=2. The Table Comes First by Adam Gopnik
  5. The Sorcerer's Apprentices by Lisa Abend
=6. A Spoonful of Promises by T. Susan Chang (or Susie to EYB members)
=6. Day of Honey by Annia Ciezadlo

Sources for Data

TV & Radio

Food Network, Fox News, Fox Houston, NPR, Splendid Table (NPR)

Newspapers & magazines

US: Arkansas Times, Associated Press, Booklist, Boston Globe, Buffalo News, Buffalo Spree Magazine, The Charleston Post & Courier, Charlotte Observer, Chicago Daily Herald, The Chicago Tribune, The Courier-Journal (Louisville), The Dayton Jewish Observer, Denver Post, The Detroit News, Esquire Magazine, Food & Wine Magazine, Houston Chronicle, Houston Press, January Magazine, The Library Journal, LA Weekly (best cookbooks), LA Weekly (best general cookbooks), LA Weekly (best baking books), LA Weekly (best candy books), Los Angeles Times, Martha Stewart Test Kitchen, Mercury News (San Jose), Minneapolis Star Tribune, More Magazine, New York Magazine, The New York Times (Wednesday Dining columnists), The New York Times (Sunday Book Review), North Jersey Record, The Orange County Register, The Oregonian, People Magazine, Philadelphia Daily News, Philadelphia Enquirer, Pioneer Press/TwinCities.com, Pocono Record, Publishers Weekly, St. Petersburg Times (Tampa Bay), San Francisco Chronicle, San Francisco Examiner, The San Francisco Weekly, Seattle Weekly, The Star-Ledger (New Jersey), Sunset Magazine, Time Out New York, USA Today, VegNews, Wall Street Journal, The Washington Examiner, The Washington Post, The Washington Post (also recommended books), The Washington Post (local books), The Washington Post (BBQ books)

Canada: National Post, The Ottawa Citizen, Toronto Globe & Mail, Toronto Globe & Mail (best Canadian books), Toronto Globe & Mail (gift books), Toronto Star, The Vancouver Sun

UK & Ireland: BBC Good Food, The Daily Telegraph, Financial Times, The Guardian (best cookbooks), The Guardian (best chocolate books), The Guardian (best baking books), The Independent (10 best gift books), The Independent (50 best books of the year), Irish Times, London Evening Standard, The Observer Food Monthly(Readers vote for best book of the year)

Australia: The Courier-Mail (Queensland), Sydney Morning Herald (best new books), Sydney Morning Herald (best gift books)

Blogs, websites & online magazines

US: 5 Second Rule, About.com (Local foods), Aroma Cucina, Baking Vintage, Big Girls Small Kitchen, Chasing Tomatoes, Chews Wise, Chow, A Chow Life, Cocodot, Cooking for Engineers, Cooking in Stilettos, Cooking With Amy, Culinate, The Daily Green, The Daily Meal, Dessert First, Details, The Dogs Eat the Crumbs, Eat the Love, Epicurious.com, Foodista (Best Italian), Food With Legs, Go Dairy Free, Good Reads, The Huffington Post (cookbooks), The Huffington Post (best books about food), I'll Bite, iVillage, Indigo, Jet City Gastrophysics, The Jew and the Carrot, Jewish Exponent, The Joy Kitchen, thekitchn.com, Kitchen Kat, The Local Beet, Metroland, Metropulse, Mother Jones, New Hope 360, One Hungry Mama, Pioneer Woman, Protein Bar, Protein Bar (celebrity cookbooks), Punk Domestics, Rasa Malaysia, RecipeGirl, Running With Tweezers, Sassy Radish, The Second Lunch, Selectism, A Serious Bunburyist, Serious Eats, Serious Eats (books about food), Serious Eats Sweets, She Knows (for the modern chef), She Knows (for gourmets), Simple Bites, Simply Stated (Real Simple), StoveTop Readings, Tasting Table, Tea & Cookies, Westchester Foodie, What Gaby's Cooking, Whisk and Quill, Wine Blog, Zagat

Canada: A Baked Creation, Canadian Culinary Book Awards, Roasted, The Savvy Reader

UK & Ireland: The Huffington Post (UK), MSN Food (UK), Foodie Fancies, Liberty London Girl, Ms. Marmitelover

Australia: Cook My Books, Eating With the Academic & the Dilettante, Le Delicieux, Lambs' Ears and Honey, Pop Sugar

Cookbook authors

The Asian Grandmothers Cookbook, Monica Bhide, Ann Gentry (Real Food Daily), Dorie Greenspan, Christopher Kimball, Nigella Lawson, David Lebovitz, Nancie McDermott, Andrea Nguyen, Michael Ruhlman, Nigel Slater

Booksellers

Amazon.com, Amazon.ca, Barbara-Jo's Books to Cooks of Vancouver, The Book Larder of Seattle, Books for Cooks of Melbourne, Australia, Broadway Books of Portland, OR, The Cookbook Store of Toronto, The Cookery Book of NSW, Australia, The Essential Ingredient of Australia, Harvard Bookstore of Cambridge, MA, Hill of Content of Melbourne, Australia, Kitchen Arts & Letters of NYC, Omnivore Books of San Francisco, Quill & Quire (Canadian booksellers' picks), Rabelais Books of Portland, ME, Readings of Melbourne, Australia, Whole Foods Markets