12 Best New Cookbooks – Ideas for What to Cook in 2021


There are lots of things to anticipate in 2021. Me, I’m (hopefully!) looking forward to the world opening up again to the extent where it’s safe to have friends over for dinner, dare I say inside, and close together. But one thing I do know is that even if we have to keep eating over virtual hangouts, the food is going to be awesome—because the soon-to-be-published 2021 cookbook lineup is looking pretty darn great. From a deep-dive into European cheese, wine, and bread to mastering the art of South Carolinian barbecue to a new take on Jewish classics—to call out just a few—if we can say anything definitively about this year, it’s that thanks to 2021’s line up of cookbooks, we will eat well.

Here are 12 cookbooks coming out in 2021 we can’t wait to crack open, recommended by some of Food52’s contributors and staff. Note: this is only the beginning! Stay tuned for more 2021 cookbook coverage.

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How Wild Things Are, Analiese Gregory, February 2021

“I first heard of Chef Analiese Gregory on the Gordon Ramsay program Uncharted. She showcased some of the incredible ingredients used in Tasmania, a region I knew nothing about. She comes from an unrivaled culinary pedigree; I eagerly await her book, highlighting how she spends her days hunting, fishing, and foraging to supply renowned [and sadly, now closed] restaurant, Franklin in Hobart.” —Sohla El-Waylly, food writer, recipe developer, host of Off-Script with Sohla

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Under the Olive Tree, Anna Maggio, February 2021

“My family hails from Italy’s Puglia region, and I find myself buying every cookbook with even one recipe from the area. Anna’s book has me excited to further connect with the diverse and delicious food and culture of my heritage.” —Maurizio Leo, recipe developer, Food52’s Resident Bread Baker

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Root, Stem, Leaf, Flower, Gill Meller, March 2021

“Like many others last year, I finally got around to expanding my garden. I grew much more than my typical tomato varieties for the first time, expanding out to brassicas of all kinds, lettuces, beets, and much more. I’m excited to use Gill’s book to put more of my garden’s bounty to use in the kitchen (and to discover more ways to cook those ever-abundant beets!).” —Maurizio Leo

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Rodney Scott’s World of BBQ, Rodney Scott and Lolis Eric Elie, March 2021

“Rodney’s been mastering and championing whole smoked hog since childhood, having grown up in his family’s eponymous South Carolina BBQ joint, and has exerted his expert influence on modern African-American cuisine for decades. As a native New Yorker, grills, smokers, and certainly pits have always been out of my reach (and frankly, wheelhouse). But that doesn’t mean I can’t eagerly await Rodney Scott’s first cookbook, tear into it like it’s a rack of mop-sauced Carolina ribs, and convince myself the pages smell like smoky meat. Someday I’ll have a grill and smoker, and this is the book I want by my side when that happens.” —Jess Kapadia, Senior Editor, Food52

Jew-Ish: a Cookbook, Jake Cohen, March 2021

“I’ve followed Jake on Instagram for a while now and am obsessed with his recipes and challah-braiding skills. In his book, he takes classic Jewish recipes and adds a modern twist. Pumpkin Spice Babka? Sign me up!” —Marissa Mullen

“I’ve been eagerly anticipating Jake Cohen’s Jew-ish for months—not only because he’s one of the kindest and most generous people I know, but also because his recipes have never failed me. And, as a fellow Jew, I couldn’t be more excited to see Jake’s take on some of my favorite childhood staples: cacio e pepe rugelach, everything bagel galettes, saffron latkes? Count me in!” —Meryl Feinstein, recipe developer, cooking teacher, Food52’s Resident Pasta Maker

A note from the author!

To put it simply, it’s a Jewish queer love story. My husband and I were on a journey to deeper understanding of our Jewish identities which led us to start hosting Shabbat, a ritual neither of us grew up practicing. The result was two years’ worth of dinners with friends and family, allowing me to explore the foods of my Ashkenazi heritage blended with the Persian-Iraqi dishes my husband grew up with. Come for the recipes, stay for the Seinfeld-esque familial anecdotes. —Jake Cohen, recipe developer, culinary host

Cheese, Wine, and Bread, Katie Quinn, April 2021

“Katie is essentially living my dream with this book. She spent months as an apprentice with some of Europe’s most acclaimed experts to study the art and science of fermentation. This book includes travel stories, historical tidbits, and recipes for classics in the world of wine, bread and cheese.” —Marissa Mullen, food stylist, recipe developer, photographer, Food52’s Resident Cheese Plater

Cook This Book, Molly Baz, April 2021

“I am eagerly awaiting the launch of Cook This Book. I love to cook but know that I lack some skills to take dishes to the next level (which is where this book comes into the picture). I am looking forward to not only trying her delicious recipes but also to learn new tips and tricks along the way. I have a feeling I will be reaching for this cookbook almost all of the time in my kitchen when I get my hands on it! —Dominique Evans, Social Media Coordinator, Food52

“I’m a big Molly stan, much like the rest of the internet. She’s fun, her recipes slap, and she named her dog after my favorite kind of deli salad. I’m beyond excited to see her first book, especially given that it will be one of the first using QR codes to let viewers access video content throughout. The future of cookbooks is here, and it’s got Caesar salad (or to quote Molly, ‘Cae-sal’) for all! —Jake Cohen

To Asia, With Love, Hetty McKinnon, April 2021

“Hetty McKinnon’s recipes—whipped hummus! turmeric chickpea soup! sautéed dates!—are truly, madly, deeply craveable. So as soon as I heard about her upcoming book, To Asia, With Love, my stomach grumbled. Hand-pulled noodles? Edamame with fried curry leaves? Smashed cucumber salad with tahini? I want it all.” —Emma Laperruque, Food Editor, Food52

Getaway: Food and Drink to Transport You, Renee Erickson, April 2021

“Organized by occasion, with unapologetically minimalist recipes (hi broiled grapefruit with sugar, hello baked onions with cream), Renee Erickson’s A Boat, a Whale & a Walrus changed my idea of what a cookbook could be. The upcoming Getaway is inspired by Erickson’s favorite spots in the world: Rome, Paris, Normandy, Baja California, London, and Seattle. Especially during quarantine, I can’t wait to visit these places through her recipes.” —Emma Laperruque

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The Pepper Thai Cookbook, Pepper Teigen and Garrett Snyder, April 2021

“Things I can’t wait to make from Pepper Teigen’s debut cookbook: Naked Shrimp Salad, Pad Korat, everything, everything, everything. I followed along ‘behind-the-scenes’ (on Instagram) as one of my favorite food photographers, Jenny Huang, shot the book last year, and I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy.” —Ella Quittner, writer, recipe developer

À Table, Rebekah Peppler, April 2021

“Every time I make one of Rebekah’s cocktail recipes (from the outlets she contributes to or from her first book, Apéritif), I take a deep swig and say, wow, this is exactly what I wanted to drink. I can only imagine that À Table will be a similar experience from a larger French-inspired food perspective. If the snacks in the last book (small-plates to munch on while sipping, like ratatouille dip, sesame cashews, and oeufs durs mayonnaise—yes, hard-boiled eggs with mayo is a fantastic snack, don’t at me!) can be taken as a preview of her palate, I know the recipes the new book will be right up my alley.” —Rebecca Firkser, Assigning Editor, Food52

Dada Eats Love to Cook It, Samah Dada, June 2021

“I can’t wait for Dada Eats Love to Cook It: 100 Plant-Based Recipes for Everyone at Your Table. I met Samah while on the Today Show and she opened my eyes to the vast world of plant-based cooking. Her recipes are unique, delicious, and easy to make.” —Marissa Mullen

This post contains products independently selected by Food52 editors. As an Amazon Associate, Food52 may earn an affiliate commission on qualifying purchases.

Which cookbooks are you looking forward to in 2021? Sound off in the comments!

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