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What is the best Paleo cookbook? If you're looking for a Paleo diet cookbook for yourself or to buy for someone as a gift, here are the 5 I love the most. (Note, I originally wrote this post in January 2018 but it's still valid in July 2019!)
I'm a bit of a cookbook addict.
I love, like LOOOOVE, to open up a crisp new book, flip through the pages, and imagine myself making all of the delicious looking dishes found within.
It's hands down the fastest way for me to get inspired and motivated to eat well. I can watch videos, look at Pinterest, even see dishes IRL, but they just don't do it for me like cookbooks. Cookbooks are my jam.
As you can imagine, I have a LOT of books as a result! But I've narrowed it down to 5 Paleo cookbooks that I think are the absolute best.
Why Should You Listen to ME About Paleo Cookbooks?
What makes me such a good judge of the best Paleo cookbooks?
Well, I've been eating a grain-free diet for over 8 years now, and 7 of those have been on some form of the Paleo diet (I've done Paleo, Whole30, and AIP as needed for my autoimmune diseases and did the GAPS diet for a year prior to that).
So I'm well versed in all things Paleo, have tried thousands of recipes, and have gotten my hands on almost every Paleo cookbook out there. One of the perks of being a Paleo blogger is getting to preview the soon-to-be-released books so I can help get the word out for my fellow bloggers.
I'm also a busy mom of two kids, so I'm looking at this all from a standpoint of actually USING these cookbooks, not just looking at the pretty pictures. These books below are the ones that are in my regular rotation for cooking and meal planning each week.
The Best Paleo Cookbooks (updated 2019)
Without further ado, here's my list of the best Paleo cookbooks. Watch the video or read below!
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# 5 – The New Yiddish Kitchen by Simone Miller and Jennifer Robins
If you like Jewish foods, this is THE book for you. But also, if you like bagels, this is ALSO the book for you.
Hands down, these are the best Paleo bagels you can make – and they don't taste like they're from a special diet. I make several batches of these at a time, slice them, then freeze them. When I want to eat them I toast them and slather with some Kite Hill almond cream cheese. Mmmm mmmmm mmmm – so freakin good! And when you do this freezing thing, it doesn't take you any longer in the morning to serve the bagels up than ones you can buy from the store.
The bagel dogs in this book are also a family favorite and something we serve on our Friday night movie-picnics often. I've made these for my kids' non-grain-free friends and they've loved them as well.
Favorite Recipes in the book: Bagels (duh!) and Bagel Dogs
#4 – Well Fed by Melissa Joulwan
This was one of the very first Paleo cookbooks I owned, and it's still one I reference on a weekly basis. Lots of great basic recipes, generous use of spices to make things very flavorful, and most of the recipes are also Whole30 compliant.
She also gives a lot of tips on how to make things ahead of time, which is helpful for busy weeknights.
Favorite Recipes in the book: Bora Bora Fireballs and Citrus Carnitas
# 3 – Practical Paleo by Diane Sanfilippo
This was THE first Paleo cookbook I ever owned, and I don't know if I would have continued on with Paleo had it not been for this book. It's part textbook, explaining why the Paleo diet works in conjunction with our bodies – which this part alone makes it worth it for anyone newer to the diet.
The other half is a cookbook with tons of delicious all-round recipes as well as meal plans for all sorts of situations, like losing weight, autoimmune disease, athletic performance, etc. The recipes are well-rounded with everything from appetizers to desserts and lots of different protein ideas.
Favorite Recipes in the Book: Mustard Chicken Thighs and Thanksgiving Meatballs
# 2 Well Fed Weeknights by Melissa Joulwan
This is the second Well Fed book in this list by Mel and it's a fantastic one!
It includes a whole bunch of Paleo & Whole30 COMPLETE meals (protein and side dish) that can be made in 45 minutes or less. It's perfect for those weeknights when you don't have a ton of time, don't want to have to think about what side to pair with what protein, and still want to eat well.
I rely heavily on this book for those weeks when I don't have much time to meal plan – I just pick a few meals from this book and go shopping. Saves me a lot of time and thinking.
Favorite Recipes in the book: Weeknight Rogan Josh and Yucatan Green Chili Saute
#1 Clean Eating with a Dirty Mind by Vanessa Barajas
Ok, so the #1 book in my list is a Paleo DESSERT cookbook. But it's SOOO good!
The one thing I've learned after 8+ years on Paleo is that there are lots of different proteins and sides you can serve guests and yourself that don't seem “Paleo”. Ones that everyone enjoys and no one thinks is lacking because it's from a special diet.
However, when it comes to desserts and baked goods, oftentimes there IS a difference between grain-free Paleo-style desserts and “normal” ones.
This book totally erases that gap. I've served the brownies from this book as well as the Death by Chocolate Cake to dozens of people on a normal Standard American diet and EVERY SINGLE ONE of them raved about how delicious these were and begged for the recipe.
I'm telling you, it's worth it if you think desserts may be a reason not to do the Paleo diet. Or to quit. Or to cheat. Just don't do it – make something from this book instead.
The recipes are not difficult to make – some are fussier than others in that they have a lot of steps, but they aren't technically hard to do. If you're a baker you won't find these any worse than any recipe from a regular cookbook. The main difference is that the ingredients are Paleo and not regular flour and sugar, etc.
Favorite Recipes in the book: Better than the Box Brownies, Death by Chocolate Cake