Best Indian Cookbook


Have you ever found yourself yearning for the rich, diverse flavors of Indian cuisine, eager to recreate the magic in your kitchen? A good Indian cookbook can transform your cooking experience, guiding you through a culinary journey filled with aromatic spices and complex flavors. But with so many options available, how do you choose the one that’s right for you?

Our Top Picks

Our #1 Top Pick: “Indian-ish” by Priya Krishna

With a refreshing take on traditional Indian recipes mixed with American influences, “Indian-ish” by Priya Krishna stands out as a unique and contemporary choice. This cookbook is perfect for those who love the vibrancy of Indian food but need it to fit into a busy lifestyle. Krishna’s recipes are accessible, creative, and most importantly, delicious. The book is filled with colorful photography and personal anecdotes that make it a joy to read and cook from. Whether you’re crafting a comforting Daal or whipping up some Roti Pizza, “Indian-ish” offers a modern twist on classics that will please both novices and experienced cooks alike.

Pick #2: “Madhur Jaffrey’s Indian Cooking”

Madhur Jaffrey is often credited with bringing Indian cooking to Western kitchens, and her cookbook “Madhur Jaffrey’s Indian Cooking” is a testament to her expertise. This book serves as an excellent guide for those who are new to Indian cuisine, as it breaks down recipes with clarity and precision. Jaffrey’s approach is educational yet practical, making traditional Indian dishes accessible to everyone. Her explanations of ingredients and techniques will provide you with a solid foundation for Indian cooking.

Pick #3: “660 Curries” by Raghavan Iyer

“660 Curries” by Raghavan Iyer is an encyclopedia of Indian curry recipes. If you are someone who loves variety and wants to delve deep into the world of curries, this book is for you. It covers a vast array of recipes from different regions of India, exploring ingredients and seasonings in impressive depth. While the number of recipes might seem overwhelming, Iyer’s storytelling and guidance make each curry approachable, inviting cooks to learn and experiment.

Pick #4: “Vegan Richa’s Indian Kitchen” by Richa Hingle

For those pursuing a plant-based diet without compromising on flavor, “Vegan Richa’s Indian Kitchen” by Richa Hingle is a perfect pick. This book offers a wealth of vegan-friendly recipes that are robust in flavors and diverse in selection. Hingle’s adeptness at vegan cooking shines through her innovative use of ingredients to replicate traditional tastes. The recipes are accompanied by stunning photos that will inspire you to try every single dish, making it an essential resource for vegan and non-vegan enthusiasts of Indian cuisine alike.

Pick #5: “The Essential South Indian Cookbook” by Srividhya Gopalakrishnan

If you’re fascinated by the flavors of the South Indian region, “The Essential South Indian Cookbook” by Srividhya Gopalakrishnan provides a fantastic exploration. This cookbook simplifies the art of South Indian cooking, featuring recipes that span from classic dosas and idlis to lesser-known regional delicacies. Gopalakrishnan’s easy-to-follow instructions and tips make these flavorful and often healthy dishes surprisingly simple to prepare at home.

What to Know Before You Buy

  • Cuisine Diversity: Indian cuisine is incredibly diverse, varying from region to region. Consider what type of Indian food you’re most interested in, be it North Indian, South Indian, vegetarian, street food, or a blend of styles.
  • Ingredient Accessibility: Some Indian recipes call for specialized ingredients that may not be readily available in your local supermarket. Look for cookbooks that offer substitutes or focus on recipes with ingredients you can find easily.
  • Complexity of Recipes: Assess your skill level and how much time you’re willing to invest. Some Indian cookbooks cater to beginners with simple, quick recipes, while others may require more advanced techniques and longer cooking times.
  • Author Expertise: The background and expertise of the author can greatly influence a cookbook’s quality. Familiarize yourself with the author’s experience and reputation in Indian cooking before making your choice.

Factors to Consider Before Buying

  • Level of Detail: Good cookbooks provide detailed instructions as well as cultural context for the recipes. Consider whether the book educates you about the dishes and the intricacies of Indian cuisine.
  • Photography: High-quality, engaging photos can greatly enhance a cookbook’s appeal and its usability, guiding you through the cooking process visually.
  • Special Diets: If you have dietary restrictions or preferences such as vegetarian, vegan, or gluten-free, look for a cookbook that caters to those needs.
  • Recipe Variety: A great cookbook will offer a wide range of recipes, from appetizers and mains to desserts and drinks. A variety ensures there’s something for every occasion and taste preference.
  • User Reviews: Read what others have said about the cookbook. User feedback can provide insight into how the recipes translate in home kitchens.

Why Trust ChooseRight?

Here at ChooseRight, we understand the importance of having a dependable resource when it comes to cooking and trying out new cuisines. To compile our top picks for the best Indian cookbooks, we have meticulously reviewed products, sifted through thousands of reviews, and gathered feedback from culinary professionals. Our commitment is to provide you with a selection that reflects both authenticity and usability, ensuring that the cookbooks we recommend will be a valuable addition to your kitchen library. Our goal is to make it easy for you to create Indian dishes that are both traditional and suited to your personal taste and lifestyle.

Finishing Thoughts

Embarking on a culinary adventure with Indian cooking is an exciting undertaking, and the perfect cookbook can make all the difference. Whether you’re searching for a modern take on Indian cuisine or deep-diving into traditional curries, our top picks offer a range of options suited for all tastes and skill levels. When selecting an Indian cookbook, consider the type of recipes, the level of detail, and the author’s expertise to ensure that your cooking journey is as enjoyable as it is flavorful. Your chosen cookbook should be a guide that helps you explore and enjoy the vast culinary landscape of India, one delicious dish at a time.

Frequently Asked Questions

What makes an Indian cookbook the ‘best’?

The ‘best’ Indian cookbook often provides readers with authentic recipes, a variety of regional dishes, user-friendly instructions, and cultural context. It also includes high-quality photos, ingredient guides, and may cater to different skill levels from beginner to expert.

Are the recipes in the best Indian cookbooks suitable for beginners?

Many Indian cookbooks are designed with beginners in mind, offering step-by-step instructions and tips for novice cooks. Look for books that state they are tailored for beginners or include basics of Indian cooking.

Do these cookbooks cater to specific dietary requirements like vegetarian or vegan?

Indian cuisine is known for its diverse vegetarian dishes. Many cookbooks include vegetarian and vegan options. Check the cookbook’s description to see if it specializes in or includes a substantial number of recipes for these dietary needs.

How authentic are the recipes in these cookbooks?

Authenticity can vary. Without a doubt, some cookbooks are written by chefs and authors with deep ties to India, promising recipes passed down through generations. Research the author’s background and read reviews to gauge authenticity.

Will I be able to find the ingredients for the recipes easily?

Most reputable Indian cookbooks aim to make recipes accessible, often providing alternatives for harder-to-find ingredients. However, for the most authentic experience, some specialty ingredients might need to be sourced from international markets or online.

Can I use these cookbooks if I have dietary restrictions such as gluten intolerance?

Indian cuisine naturally includes many gluten-free dishes. Look for cookbooks that highlight gluten-free recipes or that can easily be adapted to accommodate dietary restrictions.

Are the measurements in these cookbooks in Metric or Imperial units?

This varies by the publication. Some cookbooks may offer both Metric and Imperial measurements for convenience, while others may stick to one system. Check the book’s details before purchasing.

Do these cookbooks include both North and South Indian recipes?

Comprehensive Indian cookbooks will cover a range of regional cuisines, including both North and South Indian dishes. Verify the contents or index to ensure the cookbook provides the regional diversity you’re looking for.

Are there any cookbooks written by Indian chefs?

Yes, there are many cookbooks written by Indian chefs. These often provide authentic insights into the cuisine and are a great choice for those looking to dive deep into Indian culinary traditions.

Are there any Indian cookbooks focused on quick and easy recipes?

Definitely, some Indian cookbooks are specifically aimed at quick and easy cooking, providing recipes that are both simple to prepare and quick to cook, without compromising on flavor.

Is it useful to have an Indian cookbook if I want to learn about Indian spices and how to use them?

Absolutely. Many Indian cookbooks include detailed information about the spices used in the cuisine, their flavor profiles, health benefits, and tips on how to use them effectively in cooking.

How do I choose the best Indian cookbook for me?

Consider what you are looking for in a cookbook—authenticity, ease of use, dietary considerations, regional dishes, and level of expertise. Read reviews, look at the author’s background, and assess the cookbook’s focus to determine which one is the best fit for your needs.

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