Whether you’re whipping up a gourmet feast or enjoying someone else’s cooking, the holidays are the perfect time to bring fresh inspiration to your home. The hottest cookbooks are must haves for our wish and gift lists this season, along with the latest entertaining and design titles. A renowned North Carolina chef and a bestselling Charlotte food blogger are behind two new releases, joining some of the biggest food stars on bookstore shelves. Pick these up at your favorite local bookstore (we love Park Road Books), or buy directly from Amazon right here (click the pic):

Cookbooks

Favorite Food Stars

Top New Books cooking-for-jeffrey
Cooking for Jeffrey by Ina Garten For America’s bestselling cookbook author Ina Garten there is no greater pleasure than cooking for the people she loves—and particularly for her husband, Jeffrey. She has been cooking for him ever since they were married forty-eight years ago, and the comforting, delicious meals they shared became the basis for her extraordinary career in food.

Ina’s most personal cookbook yet, Cooking for Jeffrey is filled with the recipes Jeffrey and their friends request most often as well as charming stories from Ina and Jeffrey’s many years together. There are traditional dishes that she’s updated, such as Brisket with Onions and Leeks, and Tsimmes, a vegetable stew with carrots, butternut squash, sweet potatoes, and prunes, and new favorites, like Skillet-Roasted Lemon Chicken and Roasted Salmon Tacos. You’ll also find wonderful new salads, including Maple-Roasted Carrot Salad and Kale Salad with Pancetta and Pecorino. Desserts range from simple Apple Pie Bars to showstoppers like Vanilla Rum Panna Cotta with Salted Caramel. For the first time, Ina has included a chapter devoted to bread and cheese, with recipes and tips for creating the perfect cheese course. With options like Fig and Goat Cheese Bruschettas and Challah with Saffron, there’s something everyone will enjoy.

 

Top New Books appetites-anthony-bourdain

Appetites by Anthony Bourdain with Laurie Woolever Anthony Bourdain is a man of many appetites. And for many years, first as a chef, later as a world-traveling chronicler of food and culture on his CNN series Parts Unknown, he has made a profession of understanding the appetites of others. These days, however, if he’s cooking, it’s for family and friends.

Appetites, his first cookbook in more than ten years, boils down forty-plus years of professional cooking and globe-trotting to a tight repertoire of personal favorites—dishes that everyone should (at least in Mr. Bourdain’s opinion) know how to cook. Once the supposed “bad boy” of cooking, Mr. Bourdain has, in recent years, become the father of a little girl—a role he has embraced with enthusiasm. After years of traveling more than 200 days a year, he now enjoys entertaining at home. Years of prep lists and the hyper-organization necessary for a restaurant kitchen, however, have caused him, in his words, to have “morphed into a psychotic, anally retentive, bad-tempered Ina Garten.”

The result is a home-cooking, home-entertaining cookbook like no other, with personal favorites from his own kitchen and from his travels, translated into an effective battle plan that will help you terrify your guests with your breathtaking efficiency.

 

Top New Books mario-batali

Big American Cookbook by Mario Batali with Jim Webster Mario Batali’s delicious deep dive into American Regional cooking with 250 recipes–from San Diego Fish Tacos to Boston Cream Pie.

Over two years in the making, with Batali searching for truly delicious dishes from all corners of the US, this definitive cookbook features the best America has to offer. With over 250 simple recipes celebrating the treasures of the state fairs and the dishes of the local rotary clubs and ethnic groups. Batali has interpreted these regional gems with the same excitement and passion that he has approached traditional Italian food.

Covering the Northeast/New England, the Mid-Atlantic, the Gulf Coast, the Great Lakes, the Heartland, the Southwest, and the Pacific Coast, this book will share everything from the BBQ styles of Texas, the Smokeys and the Carolinas, to the seafood soups from yankee Boston to the spicy gumbos of the Gulf Coast and the berry pies of the Pacific Northwest.

All the dishes are very simple and do-able–from Philly Cheesesteaks to Marionberry cobbler. And while Batali uses recipes passed down through the generations, he also shares hints on what he would add to the recipe to take the flavor up a notch.

 

Top New Books alton-brown

EveryDayCook by Alton Brown My name is Alton Brown, and I wrote this book. It’s my first in a few years because I’ve been a little busy with TV stuff and interwebs stuff and live stage show stuff. Sure, I’ve been cooking, but it’s been mostly to feed myself and people in my immediate vicinity—which is really what a cook is supposed to do, right? Well, one day I was sitting around trying to organize my recipes, and I realized that I should put them into a personal collection. One thing led to another, and here’s EveryDayCook. There’s still plenty of science and hopefully some humor in here (my agent says that’s my “wheelhouse”), but unlike in my other books, a lot of attention went into the photos, which were all taken on my iPhone (take that, Instagram) and are suitable for framing. As for the recipes, which are arranged by time of day, they’re pretty darned tasty. Highlights include:

• Morning: Buttermilk Lassi, Overnight Coconut Oats, Nitrous Pancakes
• Coffee Break: Cold Brew Coffee, Lacquered Bacon, Seedy Date Bars
• Noon: Smoky the Meat Loaf, Grilled Cheese Grilled Sandwich, “EnchiLasagna” or “Lasagnalada”
• Afternoon: Green Grape Cobbler, Crispy Chickpeas, Savory Greek Yogurt Dip
• Evening: Bad Day Bitter Martini, Mussels-O-Miso, Garam Masalmon Steaks
• Anytime: The General’s Fried Chicken, Roasted Chile Salsa, Peach Punch Pops
• Later: Cider House Fondue, Open Sesame Noodles, Chocapocalypse Cookie

So let’s review: 101 recipes with mouthwatering photos, a plethora of useful insights on methods, tools, and ingredients all written by an “award-winning and influential educator and tastemaker.” That last part is from the PR office. Real people don’t talk like that.

 

Top New Books deep-run-roots

Deep Run Roots by Vivian Howard A must have for a North Carolina kitchen. Vivian Howard, star of PBS’s A CHEF’S LIFE, celebrates the flavors of North Carolina’s coastal plain in more than 200 recipes and stories.

This new classic of American country cooking proves that the food of Deep Run, North Carolina–Vivian’s home–is as rich as any culinary tradition in the world.

Organized by ingredient with dishes suited to every skill level–from beginners to confident cooks–DEEP RUN ROOTS features time-honored simple preparations, extraordinary meals from her acclaimed restaurant Chef and the Farmer, and recipes that bring new traditions to life. Home cooks will find photographs for every single recipe.

As much a storybook as it is a cookbook, DEEP RUN ROOTS imparts the true tale of Southern food: rooted in family and tradition, yet calling out to the rest of the world.

sprinkles

The Sprinkles Baking Book: 100 Secret Recipes from Candace’s Kitchen by Candace Nelson Cupcake favorites and dessert classics from the pastry chef and creator of Sprinkles Cupcakes and judge on Food Network’s Cupcake Wars.

 When Candace Nelson started Sprinkles, America’s first cupcakes-only bakery, in 2005, people thought she was crazy. “What else do you sell?” they’d ask. But Sprinkles sold out on opening day . . . and hasn’t slowed down since!
Now, in her first cookbook, Candace opens up her recipe vault to bring you 100 irresistible desserts she can’t live without. You’ll learn all the secrets for making 50 beloved Sprinkles Cupcakes, from iconic red velvet to new flavors created exclusively for the book, like crème brûlée.
But Candace doesn’t stop there. She shares the recipes for her all-time favorite cakes, pies, quick breads, cookies, bars, and other treats, plus delicious guest recipes from Sprinkles friends like Reese Witherspoon, Julia Roberts, and Michael Strahan. THE SPRINKLES BAKING BOOK is filled with all-American classics that will appeal to everyone in your family and on your dinner party guest list. So, don’t hold back. Treat yourself to this sweet cookbook and share in the fun!

Healthy and Tempting Recipes

skinnytaste-fast-slow

Skinnytaste Fast and Slow by Gina Homolka with Heather K. Jones With Skinnytaste Fast and Slow, you can get a nutritious, flavor-packed, figure-friendly meal—complete with a flourless chocolate brownie made in a slow cooker—on the table any night of the week. Gina Homolka, founder of the widely adored blog Skinnytaste, shares 140 dishes that come together in a snap—whether in a slow cooker or in the oven or on the stovetop.

Each recipe includes nutritional information, which can help you take steps toward weight and health goals, and many dishes are vegetarian, gluten-free, and freezer-friendly—all called out with helpful icons. Gina’s practical advice for eating well and 120 color photos round out this indispensable cookbook.

 

run-fast-eat-slow

Run Fast. Eat Slow. by Shalane Flanagan and Elyse Kopecky From world-class marathoner and 4-time Olympian Shalane Flanagan and chef Elyse Kopecky comes a whole foods, flavor-forward cookbook―and New York Times bestseller―that proves food can be indulgent and nourishing at the same time. Finally here’s a cookbook for runners that shows fat is essential for flavor and performance and that counting calories, obsessing over protein, and restrictive dieting does more harm than good.

Packed with more than 100 recipes for every part of your day, mind-blowing nutritional wisdom, and inspiring stories from two fitness-crazed women that became fast friends over 15 years ago, Run Fast Eat Slow has all the bases covered. You’ll find no shortage of delicious meals, satisfying snacks, thirst-quenching drinks, and wholesome treats―all made without refined sugar and flour. Fan favorites include Can’t Beet Me Smoothie, Arugula Cashew Pesto, High-Altitude Bison Meatballs, Superhero Muffins, Kale Radicchio Salad with Farro, and Double Chocolate Teff Cookies.

 

100-days

100 Days of Real Food: Fast & Fabulous: The Easy and Delicious Way to Cut Out Processed Food by Lisa Leake The Charlotte food blogger is back with a follow up to her debut cookbook 100 Days of Real Food, a #1 New York Times bestseller. 100 Days of Real Food: Fast & Fabulous gives Lisa’s devoted fans and newcomers exactly what they want, quick and tasty favorites for breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, and even snacks that are a snap to make. Inside you’ll find recipes sure to please everyone, from Cinnamon Raisin Scones, Couscous and Tomato Salad, and Corn Muffins to Citrus Salad With Crispy Quinoa, Honeydew Green Smoothie, and Slow Cooker Black Bean Soup to Easy Fish Tacos, Parmesan Crusted Chicken, and Chocolate Banana Pops. While some dishes are blog favorites, seventy-five percent are brand new.

Along with these family-friendly recipes, 100 Days of Real Food: Fast & Fabulous incorporates ideas for adult, big-kid, and little-kid packed lunches and new seasonal meal plans and shopping lists—everything you need for accessible, quick, and real home cooking. Lisa also includes a “CliffsNotes”-style resource section packed with easy guidelines on how to buy real food, supermarket staples (including her Top 10 Shopping Lists by Store), the truth behind more than a dozen grocery store myths, and other handy kitchen tips (such as food prep guides and storage cheat sheets).
Making and enjoying healthy meals the whole family will love doesn’t have to be difficult, boring, or expensive. With this essential cookbook, illustrated with color photos for every single recipe, you’ll see just how fast and fabulous good home-cooked meals can be.

 

thug-kitchen

Thug Kitchen 101: Fast as F*ck by Thug Kitchen LLC The creators of the New York Times bestselling cookbook series Thug Kitchen are back to deliver you the sorta gentle, but always hilarious shove you need to take the leap into healthy eating.

Thug Kitchen 101 includes more than 100 easy and accessible recipes to give you a solid start toward a better diet. TK holds your hand and explains ingredients from chickpeas to nooch so you’ll feel confident knowing exactly what the f*ck you’re cooking. This kickass kitchen primer also serves up health benefits and nutrition to remind everyone, from clueless newbies to health nuts, how a plant-based lifestyle benefits our bodies, minds, environment, and pocketbooks. THAT’S RIGHT. EAT GREEN, SAVE GREEN.

So scared of commitment you can’t even dedicate some time to cook? Thug Kitchen’s here to fix that sh*t: All recipes in TK 101 are guaranteed to be faster than delivery, so you can whip up some tasty meals with simple ingredients regardless of when you stumble home from work. You’re too damn important to be eating garbage, so TK has made it easy to take care of #1: you. No needless nonsense or preachy bullsh*t. Just delicious, healthy, homemade food for all the full-time hustlers out there.

be-powerful

Be Powerful: Find Your Strength At Any Age by Liz Hilliard

This one’s not a cookbook, but we had to include our friend Liz Hilliard’s new healthy living book on our holiday list. The local fitness star has gained a national following for her signature Hilliard Studio Method workout – developed with her daughter Clary. Congratulations Liz on your book release!

Change the way you look and feel with Liz Hilliard, creator and owner of Hilliard Studio Method. Using her unique, proven, and unparalleled Method, Liz helps women at any stage and any age sculpt strong, healthy, beautiful bodies and minds. Described as “Pilates on steroids,” HILLIARD STUDIO METHOD (HSM) is a core-centric, total-body workout fueled by Hilliard’s signature determination, ambition, and energy. She will safely and effectively push you to your edge every time, which is where the change occurs― not only in your body but also your mind. In Be Powerful, Liz will inspire you to
* transform weakness to strength and discover your power;
* find your physical and mental edge at any age; and
* get the body you always wanted.

Celebrity Cuisine

seasoned-life

The Seasoned Life by Ayesha Curry In THE SEASONED LIFE Ayesha Curry will share 100 of her favorite recipes and invite readers into the home she has made with her two daughters and her husband Stephen Curry. Ayesha knows firsthand what it is like to be a busy mom and wife, and she knows that for her family, time in the kitchen and around the table is where that balance begins.

This book has something for everybody. The simple, delicious recipes include Cast Iron Biscuits, Smoked Salmon Scramble, Homemade Granola, Mom’s Chicken Soup, Stephen’s 5 Ingredient Pasta, and plenty of recipes that get the whole family involved — even the little ones!

 

Top New Books cravings

Cravings by Chrissy Teigen with Adeena Sussman Maybe she’s on a photo shoot in Zanzibar. Maybe she’s making people laugh on TV. But all Chrissy Teigen really wants to do is talk about dinner. Or breakfast. Lunch gets some love, too.

For years, she’s been collecting, cooking, and Instagramming her favorite recipes, and here they are: from breakfast all day to John’s famous fried chicken with spicy honey butter to her mom’s Thai classics.

Salty, spicy, saucy, and fun as sin (that’s the food, but that’s Chrissy, too), these dishes are for family, for date night at home, for party time, and for a few life-sucks moments (salads). You’ll learn the importance of chili peppers, the secret to cheesy-cheeseless eggs, and life tips like how to use bacon as a home fragrance, the single best way to wake up in the morning, and how not to overthink men or Brussels sprouts. Because for Chrissy Teigen, cooking, eating, life, and love are one and the same.

 

Top New Books small-victories

Small Victories: Recipes, Advice + Hundreds of Ideas for Home Cooking Triumphs by Julia Turshen “I can’t wait to cook my way through this amazing new book,” Ina Garten writes in the foreword to this cookbook of more than 400 recipes and variations from Julia Turshen, writer, go-to recipe developer, co-author for best-selling cookbooks such as Gwyneth Paltrow’s It’s All Good, Mario Batali’s Spain…A Culinary Road Trip, and Dana Cowin’s Mastering My Mistakes in the Kitchen. The process of truly great home cooking is demystified via more than a hundred lessons called out as “small victories” in the funny, encouraging headnotes; these are lessons learned by Julia through a lifetime of cooking thousands of meals. This beautifully curated, deeply personal collection of what Chef April Bloomfield calls “simple, achievable recipes” emphasizes bold-flavored, honest food for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert. More than 160 mouth-watering photographs from acclaimed photographers Gentl + Hyers provide beautiful instruction and inspiration, and a gingham spine elevates this entertaining and essential kitchen resource into a covetable gift for both beginners and accomplished home cooks.

 

Home & Entertaining Books

 

Décor Inspiration

Top New Books magnolia-story
The Magnolia Story by Chip and Joanna Gaines Are you ready to see your fixer upper? These famous words are now synonymous with the dynamic husband-and-wife team Chip and Joanna Gaines, stars of HGTV’s Fixer Upper. As this question fills the airwaves with anticipation, their legions of fans continue to multiply and ask a different series of questions, like—Who are these people?What’s the secret to their success? And is Chip actually that funny in real life? By renovating homes in Waco, Texas, and changing lives in such a winsome and engaging way, Chip and Joanna have become more than just the stars of Fixer Upper, they have become America’s new best friends.

The Magnolia Story is the first book from Chip and Joanna, offering their fans a detailed look at their life together. From the very first renovation project they ever tackled together, to the project that nearly cost them everything; from the childhood memories that shaped them, to the twists and turns that led them to the life they share on the farm today.

 

vern-yips-design-wise

Vern Yip’s Design Wise: Your Smart Guide to a Beautiful Home Hardcover by Vern Yip Have you ever wondered exactly how high to hang your artwork? How about the light fixture over your dining table?

Do you know how to ideally size a rug for any room, or the best way to arrange your furniture? Trusted designer Vern Yip answers these questions, and more, by revealing the right formulas and measurements that can make any room feel just “right.” And once you know these key design principles, you’re free to confidently create a home that uniquely celebrates your needs and style. Vern shares his favorite insider tips, and opens his doors to show how he’s made them work in his own beloved homes. Vern Yip’s Design Wise provides both the inspiration and the clear, essential guidelines you need to create a home that perfectly reflects you.

 

Entertain in Style

 

celebrate-everything

How to Celebrate Everything: Recipes and Rituals for Birthdays, Holidays, Family Dinners, and Every Day In Between by Jenny Rosenstrach A warm and inviting guide to turning birthdays, holidays, and everyday occasions into cherished traditions, with more than 100 time-tested recipes—from the creator of the popular blog and book Dinner: A Love Story and author of the New York Times bestseller Dinner: The Playbook

“Families crave rituals,” says Jenny Rosenstrach, and by rituals she means not just the big celebrations—Valentine’s Day dinners, Mother’s Day brunches, Halloween send-offs, Thanksgiving feasts, holiday cocktail parties—but the little ones we may not even realize are rituals: a platter of deluxe nachos on Super Bowl Sunday, or a bowl of creamy mashed potatoes after every braces-tightening session. Whether simple or elaborate, daily or annual, these rituals all serve the same purpose for Rosenstrach: to bring comfort, connection, and meaning to every day.

 

julia-reeds-south

Julia Reed’s South: Spirited Entertaining and High-Style Fun All Year Long by Julia Reed No one embodies the rollicking spirit of great Southern party giving more than Julia Reed, the consummate hostess and go-to food and lifestyle expert.

Thrown everywhere from lush gardens and gracious interior spaces to a Mississippi River sandbar, Julia Reed’s parties capture the celebratory nature of entertaining in her native South. Here, her informative and down-to-earth guide to throwing an unforgettable party includes secrets she has collected over a lifetime of entertaining.

For this book, she offers up a feast of options for holiday cocktails, spring lunches, formal dinners, and even a hunt breakfast. Eleven seasonal events feature delicious, easy-to-prepare recipes, ranging from fried chicken to Charlotte Russe and signature cocktails or wine-pairings—she introduces her talented friends (rum makers, potters, fabric designers, bakers) along the way. Each occasion includes gorgeous photographs showing her original approach to everything—from invitations and setting a table to arranging flowers and creating the mood. Reed also provides practical considerations and sources. This irresistible book is the ultimate primer for every party-giver.

 

Coffee Table Books

nasty-galaxy

Nasty Galaxy by Sophia Amoruso From Sophia Amoruso, the New York Times–bestselling author of #GIRLBOSS, a lushly illustrated embodiment of the collective spirit of the Nasty Gal brand, Sophia’s own personal brand, and girlbosses everywhere, with a foreword by Courtney Love. Warning: this is not a style book. It’s not about how to mix prints—it’s about how to leave yours on everything you touch.

Highly graphic and visual, filled with illustrations, photos and short essays, Nasty Galaxy is part scrapbook, part inspo-journey, with moments of frivolity scattered throughout. Tactical and entertaining, envelope-pushing and conventional, surprising and refreshingly straightforward, Nasty Galaxy is a dive into Sophia’s philosophies on work, relationships, balance, friendships, and more. It is a celebration of her roots in vintage clothing, punk attitude, fringe characters, and #girlboss thought leadership.

Nasty Galaxy is Amoruso’s newest life bible, approaching style, music, philosophy, and advice in the same way #GIRLBOSS approached business—unconventionally. Oversized and in full color, this is the newest, coolest, must-have accessory.

 

company-of-women

In the Company of Women: Inspiration and Advice from over 100 Makers, Artists, and Entrepreneurs by Grace Bonney Across the globe, women are embracing the entrepreneurial spirit and starting creative businesses. In the Company of Women profiles over 100 of these influential and creative women from all ages, races, backgrounds, and industries. Chock-full of practical, inspirational advice for those looking to forge their own paths, these interviews detail the keys to success (for example, going with your gut; maintaining meaningful and lasting relationships), highlight the importance of everyday rituals (meditating; creating a daily to-do list), and dispense advice for the next generation of women entrepreneurs and makers (stay true to what you believe in; have patience). The book is rounded out with hundreds of lush, original photographs of the women in their work spaces.

 

plant

Plant: Exploring the Botanical World Hardcover by Phaidon Editors The ultimate gift for gardeners and art-lovers, featuring 300 of the most beautiful and pioneering botanical images ever.

Following in the footsteps of the international bestseller Map: Exploring the World, this fresh and visually stunning survey celebrates the extraordinary beauty and diversity of plants. It combines photographs and cutting-edge micrograph scans with watercolours, drawings, and prints to bring this universally popular and captivating subject vividly to life. Carefully selected by an international panel of experts and arranged in a uniquely structured sequence to highlight thought-provoking contrasts and similarities, this stunning compilation of botanically themed images includes iconic work by celebrated artists, photographers, scientists, and botanical illustrators, as well as rare and previously unpublished images.