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The Best Books of 2023: Food & Drink

Posted on 18th October 2023 by Mark Skinner

Whether it's hassle-free recipes from the nation's most recognisable chefs or a sumptuous journey through the tantalising landscapes of world cuisine, 2023 has served up a smorgasbord of delicious cookbooks, recipe guides and drinks books. We've selected our absolute favourites for you to feast on below.    

 


Where would be without our much-loved celebrity chefs? Ever-reliable and reassuring, Jamie Oliver, Mary Berry, Nadiya Hussain and Tom Kerridge all released unbeatable cookbooks this year, whilst newcomers Julius Roberts, Sam Way and Nick Frost (yes, THAT Nick Frost) kept things fresh and exciting with tasty culinary debuts. 

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Combining the concept behind Jamie's hugely popular 5 Ingredients with his abiding love for and knowledge of Mediterranean cuisine, this sensational cookbook serves up 125 flavour-packed, hassle-free recipes.
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£27.00 £22.99
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Tom Kerridge's essential new cookbook contains one hundred contemporary gastropub-inspired recipes, from Njuda Sausage Rolls to classic apple crumble.
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Accompanying the BBC series of the same name, Mary Makes it Easy showcases 120 hassle-free recipes from the indomitable Mary Berry, ranging from one pot wonders to delicious desserts.
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From speedy chutney to crispy leek biryani, Nadiya Hussain serves up a delicious selection of her best-loved recipes that make use of eight readily available spices to create sensational flavours.
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Hearty and comforting, the recipes in farmer and chef Roberts' debut cookbook are organised thematically by season and range from roast pumpkin and sausage stew to smoked haddock and leek rarebit.
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The renowned two Michelin star chef delivers a stunning and approachable roadmap to French home-cooking, brimming with beautiful recipes from Roux family classics to new discoveries as well as five seasonal menus to impress your guests with.
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From peppers to olives and beyond, the globetrotting chef highlights the exquisite and diverse cuisine of Spain in this lip-smackingly tasty cookbook.
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Andi Oliver's debut cookbook is brimming with the delicious Caribbean flavours that she is renowned for celebrating, incorporating her travels in Antigua to create a unique, joyous culinary experience.
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Collecting Stein's most straightforward yet still scrumptious recipes, Simple Suppers is packed with hassle-free inspiration for midweek meals and casual get-togethers with friends.
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From Clam chowder to stem ginger and lemon drizzle cake, the Hairy Bikers serve up an incredible selection of simple, affordable and mouthwatering recipes for ultimate culinary comfort.
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This game-changing book from the author of The Way We Eat Now is jam-packed with mouthwatering, stunningly simple recipes and an arsenal of kitchen secrets for those pressed for time.
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Mob
£22.00 £18.99
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From chorizo mac 'n' manchego to tangerine tiramisu, Mob return with their simplest, most accessible cookbook yet - using just six everyday ingredients to craft over a hundred delicious recipes.
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The social media star and king of sixty-second recipe videos serves up a mouthwatering collection of dishes big on flavour but short on prep time.
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From grapefruit to walnuts and cocoa to liquorice, this sumptuous cookbook from the 2021 Masterchef finalist is the definitive guide to how to get the most out of beautiful culinary bitterness.
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From scallops with buttery brandy gratin to chocolate, coconut and cherry cake, this stunningly curated treasury of recipes is perfect for spreading love through unforgettable culinary experiences.
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From peach and goat's cheese salad to harissa chickpea stew, Sanjay Aggarwal’s stunning volume is filled with incredibly tasty dishes elevated by spices, tips on how to transform your meals courtesy of even the simplest spice collection, and recipes for his award-winning blends.
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The much-loved comic actor whisks together memoir and cookbook in this irresistible tale of television and movie fame, with moving family anecdotes and delicious recipes thrown in.
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Featuring over a hundred irresistible recipes from sausages with lemony, caraway cabbage and apples to ginger, prune and PX cake with cardamom custard, The Art of Friday Night Dinner is the ultimate volume for celebrating the best evening of the week.
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Budgets may be squeezed but we are all still on the lookout for healthy and nutritious recipes that won't break the bank. Fortunately, Joe Wicks, Bored of Lunch and Pinch of Nom were on hand to ensure we stayed trim and energised whilst getting the most out of our air fryers and slow cookers.      

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In this unmissable new cookbook from Pinch of Nom, Kay and Kate Allison share their kitchen magic in the form of hearty, quick and super simple recipes, with plenty of inspiration for air fryer and slow cooker aficionados.
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Helping you to make all your fried favourites using just a fraction of the oil, this delicious collection of healthy and speedy recipes from the popular air-frying Instagrammer will take your mealtime game to another level.
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Featuring over 80 recipes from healthier chips to gorgeous cakes all cookable in the air fryer, this comprehensive collection guides the reader in the art of energy-saving, fast, healthy and delicious cooking methods.
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£22.00
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Combining tasty and nutritious recipes with quick and easy workouts, the much-loved Joe Wicks demonstrates just what can be achieved for lasting health in a mere fifteen minutes.
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From hearty soups to succulent mains, this authoritative yet accessible guide to the manifold wonders of the slow cooker serves up 65 dishes that make the most of the invaluable appliance.
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The nutritional therapist joins forces with the much-loved pop star and celebrity for an empowering and accessible diet book borne out of both of their battles with weightloss.
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Following on from the hugely popular What's for Dinner?, Rossi's essential cookbook serves up a great selection of delectable one pot dishes for the whole family.
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The bestselling author of How to Make Anything Gluten-Free delivers a sumptuous recipe guide for the Christmas season, showing how easy it is to create festive favourites without a trace of gluten.
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The doctor and cook behind the Doctor's Kitchen books unveils one hundred brand-new recipes which combine great taste with strong nutritional benefits and have been tried and tested by over one thousand members of the public.
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In this inspiring volume, the social media sensation and author of Beat Arthritis Naturally delivers a fresh selection of delicious anti-inflammatory recipes, alongside advice on how to adapt cooking techniques to reduce pain.
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Traversing the globe in pursuit of the finest dishes from a wide range of culinary cultures, the best world cookery books of 2023 have seen Sabrina Ghayour delve deeper into Middle Eastern cuisine, former Waterstones Book of the Year winner Russell Norman unveil the finest Florentine flavours and Fuschia Dunlop enthuse about her love of Chinese food.  

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From pan-fried salmon with barbary butter to lime, coconut and cardamom loaf cake, the beloved chef and bestselling author of Persiana serves up a hundred mouthwatering dishes with a Middle-Eastern twist.
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The much-loved Curry Guy serves up over 150 recipes that can be cooked in just one pot from a selection of his globe-trotting travels.
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From aslam butter chicken and zafrani paneer tikka to mango and pistachio kulfi lollies, the chef and author of Thali serves up over eighty mouthwatering Indian dishes that can be cooked in a tandoori.
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£32.00 £28.99
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Both exquisite recipe guide and evocative travelogue of Florence, this sumptuous cookbook from the celebrated chef and winner of the inaugural Waterstones Book of the Year Polpo makes a ravishing adornment to any kitchen bookshelf.
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Taking inspiration from the country's six seasons, Begum's love letter to Bangladeshi cuisine mixes modern classics with age-old favourites to create the ultimate cookbook for the region.
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From Cretan Dakos salad to Ionian pasta, Yiayia brings together a wide variety of dishes crafted by the culinary geniuses that are Greece's grandmothers.
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From classic curries and glazed meats to spicy sides and fragrant veg, A Splash of Soy is filled with mouthwatering Asian-inspired dishes you’ll want to cook again and again.
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The Sichuan cuisine expert and award-winning food writer Fuchsia Dunlop delivers a sumptuous volume that explores the history, philosophy and techniques of the ancient and immensely versatile culinary culture of China.
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Boasting 120 mouthwatering dishes that show off the very best in Syrian cuisine, this fantastic cookbook from the Damascus-born chef will introduce readers to a world of evocative flavours.
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Effortlessly blending memoir and cookbook, Usmani's immersive volume traces her childhood in Pakistan through a collection of evocative and utterly delicious recipes.
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From traditional Punjabi dishes to special favourites of the UK’s curry houses, Gurdeep Loyal’s sumptuous volume is a rich and vibrant celebration of British Indian cooking.
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The legendary Gennaro Contaldo inducts readers into the wonders of Cucina Povera - hearty meals made with affordable ingredients and encouraging zero waste - in this evocative Italian cookbook boasting delicious dishes.
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Inspired by the spices of Sub-Saharan West Africa, this sumptuous cookbook from the owners of the eponymous innovative restaurant contains not just mouthwatering recipes but insightful commentary about the dishes and the restaurant's history.

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If it's mouthwatering sweet treats you're after, you've come to the right place as the best baking books of 2023 deliver lots of deliciously indulgent goodies. Bake a cat with Kim-Joy, go charmingly retro with B. Dylan Hollis or discover the secrets of Jane's Patisserie with Jane Dunn courtesy of our sugar-rush selection.    

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In her third mouthwatering book, the Instagram sensation and bestselling author of Jane's Patisserie and Jane's Patisserie Celebrate! delivers a fresh batch of simply stunning recipes for gorgeous everyday bakes, from cheesy bread to chunky cookies.
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The Great British Bake Off star returns with more accessible, hassle-free bakes - from clementine cheesecake to coffee and pecan marzipan - perfect for those with a sweet tooth.
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The twins behind the hugely successful Finch Bakery return with a fresh selection of dazzling tray-baked treats, from deep pan cookies to sumptuous loaf cakes.
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In this mouthwatering volume perfect for building your confidence as a baker, social media sensation Matt Adlard delivers 70 recipes along with a plethora of tips and techniques for deepening your abilities.
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The Great British Bake Off finalist and expert in adorable animal-themed creations, Kim Joy delivers a delicious tome full of incredible recipes that will make every cat-lover purr.
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In this delightfully quirky ode to old-style baking, social media sensation B Dylan Hollis opens a treasure trove of vintage recipes, treating you to a decade-by-decade selection of treats including showstoppers such as 1910s chocolate potato cake and 1960s avocado pie.
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Boasting a hundred quick and easy recipes that can be baked in one pan, the second cookbook from Eloise Head - aka Fitwaffle - is another collection of delightfully delicious sweet treats.
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Gathering together a selection of recipes from the eponymous Leeds' bakery, Get Baked is a bright, vibrant and absolutely delicious offering abounding in mouthwatering flavours and lashings of colourful sprinkles.
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From toasted rice pudding to caramelised maple tart, this sumptuous new cookbook from the bestselling author of Nothing Fancy is studded with simple yet sublime sweet bakes, perfect for dessert novices or those in a hurry.
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Effortlessly proving that plant-based meals are every bit as delicious as meat dishes, the boys from BOSH!, Calum Harris and Niki Segnit - with her veggie follow-up to the bestselling Flavour Thesaurus - made lip-smacking contributions to the best vegan and vegetarian cookbooks of 2023.  

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From chilli cheeseburger nachos to duck pancakes, the BOSH! boys serve up plant-based meals fit for a carnivore in their latest mouthwatering cookbook.
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The eagerly-awaited follow-up to Segnit's seminal Flavour Thesaurus, this mouthwatering book marries tantalising plant-based flavours using the bravura concept of a culinary thesaurus.
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Fast, fun and fantastically flavoursome, the first cookbook from online vegan sensation Calum Harris is packed with lots of tasty plant-based treats that are quick to prepare and light on the pocket.
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A joy for all vegans, this brilliant and innovative cookbook from Richard Makin features a hundred utterly delicious plant-based versions of everyone's favourite dishes, from fry ups to delicious bakes, with plenty of useful hacks thrown in for good measure.
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Packed full of delicious meat-free dishes from sweet potato noodles with roasted fennel to rice paper pizza, Luu's mouthwatering cookbook is a wonderful celebration of Vietnamese cuisine.
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Filled with enticing flavour combinations, this stunningly presented recipe guide from the beloved food writer and author of Jikoni is an imaginative and hugely inspiring love-song to vegan cooking.
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This beautiful volume from the bestselling author of The Flavour Equation features an endlessly inspiring selection of veg-focused recipes, as well as introducing the reader to the origins, biology, and unique characteristics of more than fifty delicious specimens.
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From an anniversary edition of Nigel Slater's food writing classic to the wonderfully witty return of Grace Dent - one of our most entertaining food critics - devour our pick of the best food writing of 2023. 

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Nigel Slater's engrossing blend of food writing and memoir spawned a legion of imitators and it is now available in a stunning 20th anniversary edition with an updated forward by Elizabeth Day and an afterword from the author himself.
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From battles over farmland to whose responsibility it is to feed key workers, this hugely entertaining and enlightening volume from the author of Scoff details the myriad changing customs, laws and traditions that have dominated the way we have viewed food over the centuries.
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Mining the psychology behind comfort eating in accessible and always entertaining prose, the columnist, broadcaster and author of Hungry explores the emotional meaning of the foods we turn to behind closed doors through heartwarming personal tales from some of her famous friends.
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Whatever you favourite tipple, 2023 has produced some drinks books to savour, from Hugh Johnson's perennial classic wine guide to Olly Smith's eye-opening alcoholic tour and an evocative exploration of whisky on the isle of Islay.

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An annual delight for all wine lovers, Hugh Johnson’s indispensable up-to-the-minute guide reveals the best vintages to buy in 2024, plus fascinating insights into different regions and growers.
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From Singapore Slings to Fijian Flirts, join Olly Smith on a tantalising trip round the world in the company of cocktails both iconic and little-known in this fascinating volume.
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Spotlighting one of the most eccentric and enjoyable gin distillers in the UK, The Curious Cocktail Cabinet is brimming with an innovative range of cocktail recipes from the auspices of Hendrick's Gin.
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Mixing homebrewing and botany to delightful effect, Childs' guide to foraging for natural ingredients for meads, wines, beers and sodas is adorned with stunning photography and illustrations throughout.
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Both a celebration of the story of the legendary Swedish vodka brand that took the world by storm and a collection of delicious and exciting cocktails, this volume contains summer sippers, holiday favourites, mocktails and more.
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Profiling thirteen distilleries on the Scottish isle of Islay, this beautifully designed book explores the unique combination of factors that make the island a world-renowned producer of whisky.
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Christmas at Waterstones

Best Books of 2023

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