A good cookbook is one gift that never goes out of style. With hundreds of healthy cookbooks released each year, it’s hard to know where to start. I’ve done the legwork for you, paging through many of my favorites to find not just the best recipes, but the books that serve specific dietary needs with creative ideas and gorgeous photography. The books rounded up here are timeless, the best of the best, the ones bound to be the gifts that keep on giving for years to come.
These are the best healthy cookbooks of 2019
1. Well+Good Cookbook by Alexia Brue and Melissa Gelula
Did you know Well+Good has a cookbook? It has 100 amazing recipes by friends close to the brand. A very small sampling of what you’ll find tucked inside: Lea Michele’s shaved radicchio, Parmesan, and truffle pizza; Elle MacPherson’s chocolate mousse with fresh raspberries, and cacao nibs; and Well+Good co-founder Alexia Brue’s CBD strawberry smoothie. Pretty epic, right?
2. The Blue Zone Kitchen by Dan Buettner
Take a literal page out of a book inspired by people who live to be over 100. Blue Zones expert Dan Buettner has been preaching their healthy lifestyle tips for years, but this is the very first time he’s releasing a cookbook. It hits shelves December 19, so there’s no chance the foodie on your gift list has it yet.
3. Whole Food Cooking Every Day by Amy Chaplin
This elegant book has a whopping 250 recipes—none of which have meat, dairy, gluten, or refined sugar. Along with the recipes, author Amy Chaplin gives tips on how to incorporate more plant-based foods into your everyday eating, too. That way, no matter what you’re craving, you have a satisfying, meat-free option.
4. Antoni in the Kitchen by Antoni Porowski and Mindy Fox
The Queer Eye guy does in fact know how to make more than guacamole, thank you very much. And now your favorite Fab Five lover can up his or her game, too. From simple sides like roasted carrots with carrot-top pesto to desserts like salty lemon bars, there’s plenty of inspiration for what to serve for a viewing party of the next season.
5. The Whole Fish Cookbook by Josh Niland
Thanks to the resurgence of the Mediterranean diet, fish claimed the top spot at mealtime once again. This cookbook is the perfect gift for someone wanting to get, er, schooled on how to cook the brain healthy food more, while also being sustainable by using every part of it.
Here’s what a dietitian has to say about the Mediterranean diet:
6. Cali’flour Kitchen by Amy Lacey
At the end of 2018, Well+Good predicted that 2019 would be the year of the cauliflower—and we were we right. Give this book to someone who lovingly made you a plate of cauliflower mash or cauli-pizza this year. The recipes inside are way innovative, including cookies and even cauli-sandwiches.
7. Ruffage by Abra Berens
Gift this to your work friend who is always complaining about her sad desk salads. Spoiler alert: greens don’t have to be boring! Written by a chef and farmer, there are all sorts of tips in this cookbook about how to get creative with veggies, including mastering cooking methods like caramelizing and blistering.
8. Mostly Plants by Tracy, Dana, Lori, Corky and Michael Pollan
Michael Pollan’s healthy eating advice—”Eat food. Not too much. Mostly Plants”—has become a mantra of sorts. Now, his family is sharing what that looks like in practice. Gift this book to someone you like to share delicious homemade meals with. You’ll most definitely see some return!
9. Half-Baked Harvest Super Simple by Tieghan Gerard
This cookbook is full of classic comfort food faves—made over into nutritious meals that don’t take all night to make. (Know a healthy eater pressed for time? This is the book for her.) Some standouts: spinach and artichoke mac-and-cheese, lobster tacos, and cardamom apple fritters.
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