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Cookbooks, Food Books, And Magazine Reviews

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Every year there is a new trunkload of books stuffed with knowledge and recipes. We read a lot of them and I have more than 100 books on barbecue and grilling alone, and at least 200 other cookbooks. Here are some of our favorites.

Also included are more of our favorite food books, magazines, newsletters, and periodicals.

Also be sure to click here for a complete list of all of the cooking books on They also offer many books in audio form and they gift wrap. If you have others to recommend, please share in the comments on these pages.

Click Here To Search Our Reviews And Ratings Of Tools, Toys, And Accessories

Meathead: The Science of Great Barbecue and Grilling



With 400 pages and more than 400 of my photographs plus color illustrations, there is new material and new recipes not on this website, and the whole thing is organized so that you can sit down in an easy chair and flow from start to finish.

Books By Team


Dave Joachim is run by some of the best BBQ experts in the business. Between us, we have written and collaborated on dozens of books, mostly on barbecue and grilling, but also on things like food science and wood oven cooking. Click to read brief reviews and check prices on these expert BBQ books.

Sous Vide Que Made Easy: A Downloadable Deep Dive



Clint Cantwell

By marriage of water and fire, sous vide with the grill and smoker, we can achieve extraordinary results, in some cases, better than with either cooking method on its own. You can get extraordinarily tender, juicy, safe, and flavorful foods. With this exclusive book you will learn all the basics of sous vide que.

Amazing Ribs Made Easy: A Downloadable Deep Dive



Clint Cantwell

Discover everything you need to know for preparing America's favorite food, pork ribs, with this comprehensive book. In it you'll find several tasty recipes, a glossary of rib terminology, a guide to prepping ribs including how to remove the membrane and trim them, recommended smokers and grills, and so much more.

Barbecue Chicken Made Easy: A Downloadable Deep Dive



Brigit Binns

With “Barbecue Chicken Made Easy: Everything You Need To Know About Amazing Chicken On the Grill & Smoker” by Meathead and Brigit Binns, you can master the art of perfectly grilled and smoked chicken. Say goodbye forever to charred skin, burnt sauce and undercooked meat. Explore chicken recipes, tips, and so much more.

Peace, Love, and Barbecue: A Must Own Cookbook



Peace, Love, and Barbecue, published in 2005, not only contains the expected count of excellent recipes and cooking tips, but includes interviews with the legends of barbecue, and visits to the "shrines, shacks, joints, and right respectable restaurants."

Paul Kirk’s Championship Barbecue Sauces Cookbook Review



This book has 175 sauces, marinades, dry rubs, wet rubs, mops, and salsas. Nothing fancy, no long-winded tales and stories, just tried and true recipes, mostly from his buddies on the competition circuit.

Books on Barbecue and Grilling: The Barbecue! Bible

The Barbecue! Bible was Raichlen's first book on the subject. Published in 1998, this 556 page tome with 500 recipes covers everything from hamburgers to bread.

Barbecue! Bible Sauces, Rubs, and Marinades Cookbook



Barbecue! Bible Sauces, Rubs, and Marinades, Bastes, Butters, and Glazes is a comprehensive collection of creative flavors from around the world.

Planet Barbecue! by Steven Raichlen



Beautifully photographed in color, this book won a Julia Child Cookbook Award. Raichlen's most recent book, it is the best of his five barbecue books.

How to Grill: The Complete Illustrated Book of Barbecue Techniques by Steven Raichlen

With several other books on barbecue and grilling, a cooking school, two television series, a lecture tour, and a line of outdoor cooking tools, Raichlen has had the kind of influence on men who cook, that Julia Child had on women who cook.

Serious Barbecue: A Must Own Cookbook By Adam Perry Lang



The recipes are creative, insightful, and beautifully photographed.

Franklin Barbecue: A Meat-Smoking Manifesto by Aaron Franklin and Jordan Mackay

Franklin Barbecue in Austin is widely considered the best in the world and people stand in line for hours to get in.

Kansas City Barbeque Society (KCBS) Cookbook Reviewed



Pure fun. Founded in 1986, the Kansas City Barbeque Society (KCBS) is an international association with thousands of members.

Big Bob Gibson’s BBQ Book By Chris Lilly

Chris Lilly is the Executive Chef of one of the nation's classic old joints, Big Bob Gibson Bar-B-Q, in Decatur, AL. Lilly is a fine story teller, and in this book he shares with us what it is like to work at a small town barbecue joint, the legend of Big Bob and countless amazing recipes.

Dr. BBQ’s Big-Time Barbecue Cookbook By Ray “Dr. BBQ” Lampe



Very few people know barbecue and grilling like Ray Lampe and he's got a room full of trophies to prove it.

America’s Best BBQ by Ardie A. Davis and Chef Paul Kirk

This book is meant as a cookbook, as described in the subtitle "100 Recipes from America's Best Smokehouses, Pits, Shacks, Rib Joints, Roadhouses, and Restaurants". But its much more. Davis and Kirk probably have visited more barbecue joints than anyone I know, and they have picked some of their favorites with recipes.

Steak: One Man’s Search for the World’s Tastiest Piece of Beef by Mark Shatzker



This book is great story telling as we follow an inquisitive writer on his quest for great steak.

The South’s Best Butts—Pitmaster Secrets for Southern Barbecue Perfection by Matt Moore



Moore is a youngish Southern Gentleman from Nashville (and author of A Southern Gentleman's Kitchen), the son of a cattleman and grandson of a butcher, takes his small plane all over the South visiting a dozen BBQ joints in as many states from Texas to North Carolina.

Serial Griller, Grillmaster Secrets For Flame-Cooked Perfection by Matt Moore



A fun, beautifully photographed cross country visit with some of the top grillers in the nation including Meathead

300 Big and Bold Barbecue and Grilling Recipes by Karen Adler & Judith Fertig



As the title says, this book is all about the recipes, and they look wonderful.

Fire it Up – More Than 400 Recipes for Grilling



A big, heavy, beautifully photographed book that feels authoritative. The intro material is short, but high quality.

Books on Barbecue and Grilling: Weber’s Time to Grill

Chef Purviance has another winner for Weber. This one has the 200 plus recipes divided into two categories, "Easy" and "Adventurous", pretty much 50/50, and you don't need a Weber to cook them.

Weber’s New Real Grilling Cookbook by Jamie Purviance

Purviance begins this beautiful book with managing the grill, and although Weber's grills are featured, the advice is broad enough to cover most charcoal and gas grills.

BBQ Secrets by Rockin Ronnie Shewchuk Reviewed



Shewchuk is a Vancouver based competitor who really knows his stuff. This is a good beginner's guide to serious barbecue with many of his competition recipes.

Books on Barbecue and Grilling: Low & Slow: Mastering the Art of Barbecue in Five Easy Lessons by Gary Wiviott



If you have a new Weber Smoky Mountain smoker you absolutely positively must buy Gary Wiviott's book.

Steak And Cake by Elizabeth Karmel



So you're asking yourself "how many steak recipes are there?" Well, far more than even I dreamed. In this case, about 50 steaks and 50 cakes, each paired. This is the definition of indulgent.

Thin Blue Smoke by Doug Worgul



Check out our review of Thin Blue Smoke by Doug Worgul. It's the first novel we've ever reviewed on this site. If you're a fan of good writing, good barbecue, and good stories, we highly recommend pulling up a chair, pouring a couple fingers of your favorite libation, and settling into this book.

Catching Fire, How Cooking Made Us Human by Richard Wrangham



In the book "Catching Fire, How Cooking Made Us Human" (Basic Books, 2010), Richard Wrangham describes how cooking changes the chemistry of food and how that made it easier for proto humans to chew, digest, and extract energy and nutrients. It also includes insight for us who love to hang out at the grill.

The Prophets of Smoked Meat: A Journey Through Texas BBQ

Daniel Vaughn knows Texas barbecue so well that in 2013 Texas Monthly magazine hired the Dallas architect to write about the subject full time.

Legends of Texas Barbecue Cookbook Review

This book is a wonderful piece of scholarly research that is also a great read. Walsh has delved into the history and lore of Texas barbecue, it origins, its ingredients, its personalities, and its tall tales.

Barbecue: A Texas Love Story



A 46 minute DVD narrated by the late Governor Ann Richards and directed by Chris Elley.

Startin’ the Fire by George Hensler



George Hensler is the captain of a barbecue team, and he has written a very helpful short book on what you need to know before entering your first Kansas City Barbecue Society (KCBS) contest.

Books on Hot Dogs, Hamburgers, Chili, Bacon: The Hamburger: A History

A cleverly written, well researched, fun tale of the history of the hamburger and how it has evolved in step with American culture.

Hot Dog: A Global History

A well regarded culinary historian and Professor Emeritus of History and Humanities at Roosevelt University in Chicago.

Hamburger: A Global History

This definitive little book unwraps the mystery of the origin of the hamburger and its name, and traces its spread across the globe.

Hamburgers & Fries: An American Story

This book follows him cross country as he seeks regional styles and historical techniques that will help him unravel the story of the All-American hamburger.

Books on Hot Dogs, Hamburgers, Chili, Bacon: The Chili Cookbook

If you're a fan of chili in its various forms then this is the book for you! Discover recipes for such dishes as classic Texas chili, Cincinnati chili, four alarm chili, and so much more.

Hamburger America, A Tour Of The Nation’s Top Burger Stops

George Motz has traveled the four corners of the nation to find the best and most interesting burger joints.

Food Rules: An Eater’s Manual by Michael Pollan



A short paperback that you can easily swallow on a short airplane trip, Pollan, the author of such important books as the Ominvore's Dilemma, In Defense of Food, and The Botany of Desire, summarizes what he has learned about good eating habits in the form of "rules" which he describes in a few sentences.

Keys to Good Cooking: A Guide to Making the Best of Foods and Recipes by Harold McGee



From the country's foremost expert on the science of cooking, Harold McGee, Keys to Good Cooking is a concise and authoritative guide designed to help home cooks navigate the ever-expanding universe of ingredients, recipes, food safety, and appliances, and arrive at the promised land of a satisfying dish.

The Art of Beef Cutting: A Meat Professional’s Guide

The best teachers can address the novice and still educate the expert, and that is exactly what Kari Underly does in this fine guide.

The Cook and the Butcher: A Cookbook Review

Four chapters: Beef, Pork, Lamb, Veal. A lifetime of incredible recipes for cooks who are bored with the same old same old.

The Great Meat Cookbook by Bruce Aidells Reviewed

Bruce Aidells has been a working butcher. He founded a sausage company and I'll bet you've seen Aidells Sausages on your grocery shelves.

Whole Beast Butchery: A How-To Book Reviewed

Farr is a classically trained chef, butcher, and butchery instructor, at his 4505 Meats in San Francisco. In three chapters, Beef, Pork, and Lamb, he demonstrates his craft in hundreds of photographs.

Books on Meat and Butchering: The Meat Buyers Guide: Meat, Lamb, Veal, Pork and Poultry

Edited by NAMI (formerly NAMP), this is the definitive reference on all the different cuts of meat, with charts, excellent photos, a glossary, and nutritional info.

Books on Food Science: The Omnivore’s Dilemma

This may be the most important book about food since Upton Sinclair's The Jungle drew back the curtain on the Chicago stockyards in 1906. Both books take an analytical and critical look at how food gets to our table. The New York Times named The Omnivore's Dilemma one of the 10 best books of 2006.

Books on Food Science: The Food Lab, Better Home Cooking Through Science

This is the best cookbook I own. It has also won the Cookbook of the Year from the International Association of Culinary Professionals, and a James Beard Award.

The Science of Good Food by David Joachim and Andrew Schloss



The authors explain what ingredients are made of, how they behave when cooked, and how various methods work. A very thorough A to Z encyclopedia of food science.

On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen by Harold McGee



If you want to know why we do what we do in the kitchen, not just what to do or how to do it, this fat tome is a must have.

The Bacon Cookbook by James Villas



The standards such as quiche, carbonarra, BLT, are there among 168 intriguing recipes by an experienced cookbook author.

25 Essentials: Techniques for Grilling Fish by Karen Adler & Judith Fertig



This pretty, little, inexpensive, spiral bound cookbook explains the simple guidelines for grilling seafood beautifully.

Cookbooks: The New Wine Country Cookbook: Recipes from California’s Central Coast

This beautiful book whisks readers back to a lyrical time when California was a simpler place?? before it overflowed with too many people seeking Paradise?? to a fertile region nestled between Monterey and Santa Barbara.

DIY Cocktails: A Guide To Creating A Variety Of Mixed Drinks



A quality cocktail recipe book is a must for any home bar and one of our favorites is "DIY Cocktails: A Simple Guide to Creating Your Own Signature Drinks" by Marcia Simmons and Jonas Halpren. DIY Cocktails is based on categories and ratios so we can understand the concepts of what the elements of a balanced mix.

Good Reading: The Tummy Trilogy



The Tummy Trilogy is actually three books in one, all long out of print, but occasionally available used.

The Foie Gras Wars: A Story Of The World’s Fiercest Food Battle



Rich, complex, not like any other liver, more akin to eating a stick of the richest buttery cream cheese imaginable. This book outlines how a 5,000-year-old delicacy inspired the world's fiercest food fight.

Magazines and Periodicals: Cook’s Illustrated

This is a great cooking magazine. The authors have grown from a really good magazine that people in the know swore by, to a great website, to a TV show, and have recently added another magazine.

Magazines and Periodicals: Bon Appetit

A big, sumptuous feast of recipes and ideas, drool inducing photos, probing interviews, memoirs, travel, tips on technique, culinaria, restaurant guides, product reviews, what to drink, trends, pop culture, and eternal culture.

Magazines and Periodicals: All About Beer

Easily the leading beer magazine, each of the six issues per year contains features about different beer types, breweries, the interesting characters who make it, places to drink it, beer and food matching, the politics influencing the marketplace and more.

Magazines and Periodicals: Wine Advocate



Robert Parker is the most influential individual in the wine world. He and his associates taste thousands of wines each year, and that's pretty much all you'll find in this newsletter.

Magazines and Periodicals: Wine Spectator

There is a special issue devoted to their Restaurant Grand Award Winners, another on the Top 100 wines of the Year, and another on Great Wine Values.

Magazines and Periodicals: Nation’s Restaurant News

A classic trade publication, this glossy color tabloid comes out 50 times per year and is fat with trends and much more.

Published On: 5/16/2019 Last Modified: 11/3/2021


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These are not ads or paid placements. These are some of our favorite tools and toys.

These are products we have tested, won our top awards, and are highly recommend. Click here to read how we test, about our medals, and what they mean.

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A big part of this site is our unbiased equipment and product reviews. We love playing with toys and we have no problem calling them the way we see them. Some companies pay a finder’s fee if a reader clicks a link on and buys a product. It has zero impact on our reviews, zero impact on the price you pay, and the sites never tell us what you bought, but it has a major impact on our ability to keep this site alive! So before you buy, please click our links. Here’s a link that takes you to a page on Amazon that has some of our favorite tools and toys:

The Good-One Is A Superb Grill And A Superb Smoker All In One

The Good-One Open Range is dramatically different from a traditional offset smoker. By placing the heat source behind and under the smokebox instead of off to the side, Open Range produces even temperature from left to right, something almost impossible to achieve with a standard barrel shaped offset.

Click here to read our complete review

The Pit Barrel Cooker May Be Too Easy

The PBC has a rabid cult following for good reason. It is absolutely positively without a doubt the best bargain on a smoker in the world. Period. This baby will cook circles around the cheap offset sideways barrel smokers because temperature control is so much easier.

Click here to read our detailed review and the raves from people who own them

Our Favorite Backyard Smoker

The amazing Karubecue is the most innovative smoker in the world. The quality of meat from this machine is astonishing. At its crux is a patented firebox that burns logs above the cooking chamber and sucks heat and extremely clean blue smoke into the thermostat controlled oven. It is our favorite smoker, period.
Click here for our review of this superb smoker

Groundbreaking Hybrid Thermometer!

Thermapen One Instant Read Thermometer

The FireBoard Spark is a hybrid combining instant-read capability, a cabled temperature probe, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity. We gave Spark a Platinum Medal for pushing the envelope of product capability while maintaining high standards of design and workmanship.

Click here to read our comprehensive Platinum Medal review

Bring The Heat With Broil King Signet’s Dual Tube Burners

3 burner gas grill

The Broil King Signet 320 is a modestly priced, 3-burner gas grill that packs a lot of value and power under the hood. Broil King’s proprietary, dual-tube burners get hot fast and are able to achieve high, searing temps that rival most comparatively priced gas grills. The quality cast aluminum housing carries a Limited Lifetime Warranty.

Click here to read our complete review

Fireboard: The Ultimate Top Of The Line BBQ Thermometer

Fireboard Labs Product Photo Shoot. Kansas City Commercial Portrait and Wedding Photographers ©Kevin Ashley Photography

With the ability to monitor up to six temperatures simultaneously with either Bluetooth or Wifi on your mobile phone, tablet, or computer, Fireboard is the best digital thermometer we’ve tested.
Click here to read our detailed review

Is This Superb Charcoal Grill A Kamado Killer?

The PK-360, with 360 square inches of cooking space, this rust free, cast aluminum charcoal grill is durable and easy to use. Four-way venting means it’s easy to set up for two zone cooking with more control than single vent Kamado grills. It is beautifully designed, completely portable, and much easier to set up for 2-zone cooking than any round kamado.

Click here to read our detailed review of the PK 360

Click here to order directly and get an exclusive deal