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Christmas 2023 Gift Guide: The best cookbooks for bakers

by Jessica Lockyer-Palmer

published on 22 October 2023

Find the perfect gift for the star baker in your life with our pick of the best cookbooks on baking below.

Looking for more gifting inspiration? From the best vegetarian and vegan books, to stocking filler and secret Santa gifts and the perfect recipe book for the cook who has everything, discover all of our Christmas gift guides here.

Jane’s Patisserie Everyday

by Jane Dunn

Everyday is the third collection of recipes from baking sensation Jane’s Patisserie and it’s all about creating simple sweet and savoury treats for any occasion. Jane covers classic favourites – chunky cookies, fluffy cupcakes, and savoury one-tray feasts for dinner – as well as 70 new and exclusive recipes (mini Biscoff cheesecake, anyone?) As in her previous cookbook Celebrate, Jane breaks down each recipe in a step-by-step guide that even novice bakers can follow.

Mary Berry’s Baking Bible (2023 Edition)

Mary Berry’s Baking Bible is an indispensable kitchen companion for anyone wanting to learn the secret to fail-safe cakes and bakes. In the updated 2023 edition, featuring over 250 new and classic recipes, you’ll find cakes, meringues, muffins, scones, bread and more. Whatever you fancy baking, there’s a recipe to guide you all the way through to the first bite.

Crumbs & Doilies

by Jemma Wilson

London-based bakery Crumbs & Doilies is famed for its cupcakes piled high with icing and picture-perfect layer cakes in every colour of the rainbow. In her new cookbook, founder Jemma Wilson shares ninety of the bakery’s essential recipes, including cupcakes, cookies, traybakes, layer cakes, and more. Bakers will also find equipment lists and plenty of invaluable guidance on how to decorate your cakes to Crumbs & Doilies levels of perfection. Expect fun flavours (hello, baklava cupcakes), brightly coloured bakes, and plenty of whimsy.

Baked In One

by Eloise Head

Fitwaffle’s Baked in One is the second cookbook from TikTok and Instagram sensation Eloise Head (aka Fitwaffle). It’s the ultimate accessible baking book, given that each of the 100 recipes can be made in one tin. Eloise knows how to create a crowd-pleasing bake and this collection of recipes includes the likes of cheesecake, brownies, fudge, and cookies – many of which require fewer than five ingredients.

The Little Book of Vegan Bakes

by Holly Jade

The Little Book of Vegan Bakes is the essential guide to vegan baking. It includes eighty recipes for cakes, muffins, pastries, and desserts alongside essential tips and information on plant-based ingredient swaps and baking techniques. If there’s a bake or dessert you’ve always wanted to veganise, you’ll find it here, from plant-based mince pies and hot cross buns to sticky toffee pudding and doughnuts.

Love is a Pink Cake

by Claire Ptak

Claire Ptak’s cookbook Love is a Pink Cake is a treasure trove of delicious recipes and heartfelt stories. With her unique twist on classics (think Brown Sugar Victoria Sponge, or Tahini Halva Brownies), Ptak guides you through irresistible bakes that can accompany any breakfast, lunch or dinner. You’ll even find the recipe for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s famous Lemon and Elderflower Wedding Cake.

Bake With Jack

by Jack Sturgess

Perfect for budding and veteran bread bakers alike, Bake With Jack: Bread Every Day is a celebration of the perfect loaf. With Jack’s signature no-nonsense instructions for over thirty types of bread and an additional fifty recipes to help you make the most of each loaf, Bake With Jack: Bread Every Day is all about making great bread, minus the fuss.

The Sweet Roasting Tin

If the baker on your Christmas list is a fan of Rukmini Iyer’s best-selling The Roasting Tin cookbooks, you’ve just landed on their dream cookbook. The Sweet Roasting Tin is the latest in the series, and this time the focus is on cakes, bakes, puddings, pastries and more, all made in the most common baking tins. Much in the same vein as the recipes across the series, Rukmini’s one-tin bakes promise punchy flavours, contrasting textures, and recipes that deliver results without the fuss.

Bundt

by Melanie Johnson

With their towering stature and intricate design, Bundt cakes are the undisputed beauty queens of the baking world and many bakers can feel a little intimidated by them as a result. In this definitive guide, esteemed food writer Melanie Johnson seeks to demystify Bundt cakes and reveal their endless potential for inspiring designs and ingredient combinations. The one hundred and twenty recipes include the perfect Bundt for every season, occasion and baker.

Batch Baking

by Cynthia Barcomi

Batch Baking is a busy baker’s dream cookbook. The seventy recipes span doughs, batters and dry mixes that can be stored, whipped out and baked when needed. With Cynthia’s helpful advice on making, handling and storing your pre-made mixes, you will always be just a few steps away from freshly baked cookies, cake-ies, pizzas, pastries and more.

Bakes That Break The Internet

by Kat Buckley

Social media is a wonderful place for discovering recipes, and it’s no surprise that there are so many trending bakes. In Bakes That Break the Internet, blogger Kat Buckley (known as @thebakingexplorer) shares recipes for nostalgic treats like Jammie Dodger Ice Cream and School Dinner Cake, as well as show-stopping desserts like Nutella Freakshakes and Faultline Cake. The result? Simple recipes that will impress the guests at your next dinner party.

Jane’s Patisserie

by Jane Dunn

Jane Dunn, the baker behind the website Jane’s Patisserie, is somewhat of a baking sensation. Adored for her easy, customisable bakes, she has amassed hundred of thousands of devoted followers who never miss the opportunity to try out her latest gooey-centred NYC-style cookie, drip cake, no-bake cheesecake or loaf recipe. Her first cookbook brings together the most popular recipes from her website, alongside all-new recipes, and is a must for bakers of all levels.

Finch Bakery

by Lauren and Rachel Finch

Sisters Lauren and Rachel Finch are the founders of popular Blackburn-based Finch Bakery. In their first cookbook they let readers in on the secret to their dreamy drip cakes, fudgy brownies, creative cake jars, and much more. Packed with tips and tricks to help you master everything from a smooth icing finish to different piping techniques, Finch Bakery is all about elevating your baking skills to the next level with Instaworthy bakes to show for it.

Nadiya Bakes

Whether you’re a novice baker or total pro, there’s something in this book for everyone, with fun, creative, and totally unique recipes. Every page is infused with Nadiya’s warmth and enthusiasm, and with her straightforward, step-by-step instructions you can be confident every bake will deliver.

Sweet

by Yotam Ottolenghi, Helen Goh

If you’ve ever wandered into an Ottolenghi deli and found yourself mesmerised by the counter of baked goods, this cookbook is for you. In his first cookbook dedicated to all things sweet, Ottolenghi goes back to his pastry chef roots with his go-to fellow baker, Helen Goh. Full of beautifully-shot inspiration for all manner of bakes (including all of your deli favourites) it promises precise and easy instructions and results that deliver Ottolenghi levels of flavour and presentation, every time.

Baking School

by Justin Gellatly, Matthew Jones, Louise Gellatly

A practical and realistic manual for bakers of all levels, Baking School is the cookbook from popular London bakery, Bread Ahead. The ultimate guide to successful baking at home, it teaches readers what is possible using just basic household equipment and a passion for all things dough. Divided into chapters based on different cuisines, it includes recipes for bread, biscuits, pastries and more from across the world, from Italian focaccia to Finnish piparkakut. And don’t miss the recipe for their instafamous doughnuts too.

The Violet Bakery Cookbook

by Claire Ptak

Claire Ptak hit superstardom in 2018 when Harry and Meghan chose her to bake their wedding cake. Bringing the bakes of her hugely popular East London-based bakery to your home, The Violet Bakery Cookbook is a great choice for adventurous bakers who like experimenting with new flavours and techniques, and incorporating seasonal fruit into their bakes.

Three Ingredient Baking

by Sarah Rainey

Tapping into the trend of the moment, Three Ingredient Baking features 100 bakes made with just, you guessed it, three ingredients. This is a cookbook that proves you don’t need a store-cupboard full of ingredients to make accomplished breads, brownies, cakes, biscuits and more. All you need is a little baking alchemy and Sarah’s easy-to-follow instructions.

Biscuiteers Book of Iced Gifts

by Biscuiteers

From the popular Notting Hill Bakery, Biscuiteers, this cookbook demonstrates all of the essential recipes and techniques behind their awe-inspiring biscuits. From different types of dough and icing skills, to how to make different biscuit designs, this book is a treasure trove of ideas for the baker wanting to expand and refine their skills.

Stork: The Art of Home Baking

Stork: The Art of Home Baking marks 100 years of the iconic British margarine brand with 100 recipes spanning breads and brownies, cakes and biscuits, tarts and desserts. With archive material and vintage packaging, this is a nostalgic baking book for classic bakers.

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