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No kitchen is complete without a few choice cookbooks lining a shelf. The difference between a good cookbook and a bad one, though, is how much it gets used. Whether you’re buying a gift for a friend or a cookbook for your own kitchen, here are a few tips to make sure your purchase doesn’t go amiss.

• Check reviews. Take a peek at online reviews to see what people who’ve used this particular cookbook have to say about its layout, recipes and level of cooking skill. It’s also a good idea to check with friends to see if they have any recommendations for you.

• Match your skill level. Look for cookbooks that match your skill level. Though it looks delicious, you may not be ready to cook a recipe like salt-encrusted fish just yet. Build up to those skills by starting out with cookbooks that feature beginner recipes — you might even find one that has a nice range of beginner to advanced recipes so you can keep using it as you grow. Keep skill in mind when purchasing a gift cookbook for a friend, too. It would be a shame if they couldn’t use your gift because the recipes are too difficult.

• Don’t forget health and diet. Many people find they have dietary restrictions they need to follow, and your cookbook should cater to yours. Whether it’s a Paleo cookbook or a vegetarian cookbook, yours should have recipes that you feel comfortable cooking and eating. Health concerns can also influence your diet, and many cookbooks cater to a range of healthy cooking techniques. Don’t forget to check to see if your intended gift recipient has dietary restrictions, as well.

• Take a peek at some recipes. The best way to gauge a cookbook is to read through a few of its recipes. Not only can this tell you if the format is easy to understand and follow, it can give you a better idea of the level of cooking involved. Plus you can decide if there are enough delicious recipes to justify your purchase, or if too many of them simply miss the mark.

Get inspired with our curated ideas for Cookbooks and find the perfect item for every room in your home. With such a wide selection of Cookbooks for sale, from brands like Penguin Random House, Graphic Image, and Le Creuset, you’re sure to find something that you’ll love. Shop from Cookbooks, like the the Session Cocktails or the 360 Cookbook, while discovering new home products and designs. Whether you’re looking to buy Cookbooks online or get inspiration for your home, you’ll find just what you’re looking for on Houzz.
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