Obviously, as a home cook, I love to find new treasures in cookbooks. The following are some of my favorite cookbooks that I personally recommend.

Note: I am the author of three cookbooks myself, those are listed at the bottom of this page.


sweetness amaazon


Come celebrate the sweet spirit and taste of Southern hospitality with Christy Jordan, the voice of Southern cooking for a new generation. Sweetness is a memory made in our grandmother’s kitchen. It is nights on the porch, listening to the old stories, and welcoming guests with an open heart. And food: sustaining those same guests with Peach Buttermilk Pie. Greeting the kids and their friends after school with Chocolate Chip Dream Bars. Sitting in the shade with neighbors and cooling down with Blushing Apple Juleps. (Pour some for the little ones, too—there’s no alcohol.) Or ending dinner on the high note of a Chocolate Chess Pie, because you always need a little something sweet to finish it off, whether a meal or a day.

In Sweetness, Christy Jordan shares 197 recipes for sweet things to eat and drink—recipes that are deeply delicious, rich with tradition, often reaching through generations, and designed with today’s hectic schedules in mind. Because life is just better when you add a little sweetness.

My Two Cents: This is my latest and third book. When I started writing most of my dearest grandparents were still with us. Now, three books in, they are gone on to that better place to lay out the table for our coming family reunion. This book is written in dedication to them, and contains some of their most precious stories along with photos from their childhoods. Sweetness is written to help open our eyes to the true blessings in our life each day, and to help us remember to savor every precious moment.

weeknight dinner

The Weeknight Dinner Cookbook
Written by the sweet and kind Mary Younkin, this is the perfect way to get dinner on the table quickly and easily with recipes for tasty main dishes and flavorful side dishes, plus a sprinkling of sweet treats. The recipes in this book are made from scratch and each chapter conveniently separates them by cook time: 15–25-minute meals, 30–45-minute meals and 5–10-minute prep (meals cook on their own in the slow cooker or oven).

My Two Cents: This cookbook is filled with fresh ideas that are still family friendly. If you’re looking for “different” but not “weird”, this is the book to get! I am keeping this one handy as I see a lot of use in my future. An excellent investment!

sb cb

The Southern Bite Cookbook

Whether it’s fried chicken or pimento cheese, fruit salad or meatloaf, everybody’s family does it a little differently. The Southern Bite is a celebration of those traditions and recipes every Southern family is proud to own. It’s the Pecan Chicken Salad that’s mandatory for every family reunion. Iso comforting after a long day. It’s the Glazed Ham that makes its way to the Easter table every year.

If you’re lucky enough to hail from the South, you’ll no doubt find some familiar favorites from your own family recipe archives, along with a whole slew of surprises from Southern families a lot like yours! There’s Turnip Green Dip for your next party, Chicken Corn Chowder for those chilly fall nights, and Cornbread Salad for when you really need to make an impression.

My Two Cents: Hey, I wrote the forward for this book, literally. I love everything in here. Stacey is a dear friend and his heart comes through in every bite. Hint: Make the goulash. Seriously! Click here for my post about that.

mama canning

Not Your Mama’s Canning Book

Are you interested in learning how to can food or to try new recipes for canning food? Do you enjoy both savory and sweet canned goods? Rebecca Lindamood has the recipes for you!

Rebecca will not only teach you how to can food with basic recipes, but she will provide alternative versions to take your canned food flavors up a notch. She will also provide recipes that highlight these unique flavor combinations so you can make use out of every canned good! From jams, jellies and preserves to pickles and relishes to drunken fruit and pressure canning, this book has something for everyone. The recipes will be tested for safety by an independent organization to be certified. Some recipes will require the use of pressure canners, but not all.Make your mama proud but don’t tell her you can can better than her!

My Two Cents: I love this cookbook! Just about all of the canning cookbooks I’ve have are just regurgitating the same old recipes or even sometimes the recipes are just so far out there that I know I wouldn’t find something that I’d enjoy making.  THIS cookbook brings in fresh and exciting ideas for canning that today’s home cooks will enjoy – and they aren’t weird, either! Every home canner *needs* this book in their kitchen. 

amanda retke

Surprise Inside Cakes

From Amanda Rettke, founder of the popular blog I Am Baker, comes Surprise-Inside Cakes with recipes and techniques to make dozens of stunning, imaginative cakes for every occasion, each with something special inside.

Whether it’s a striking, all-white cake with a secret red velvet heart baked inside; a birthday cake, complete with a surprise balloon cake in the middle; or the gorgeous hydrangea cake that took the blogosphere by storm; Amanda’s cakes are downright revolutionary—and really fun to prepare.

This beautifully designed cookbook contains eye-popping color photos and step-by-step instructions to create incredible surprise-inside cakes in your own kitchen.

For Amanda Rettke, every cake is a gift to be shared with family and friends, a special treat that should be lovingly prepared and meticulously designed—from the inside out.

My Two Cents: I am totally biased because I love everything Amanda does. If you find yourself wanting to make a cake but not wanting to go to the trouble of making a grand event of of it, this book will inspire you!

Come Home to Supper cover

Come Home To Supper

It’s a heartfelt celebration of family dinners―the comforting, delicious food that memories are made of―by the new doyenne of Southern cooking. Christy Jordan is a former editor-at-large of Southern Living, and former contributing editor to Taste of the South, and publisher of the wildly popular blog SouthernPlate.com―boasting nearly 1 million unique visitors per month, over 100,000 e-newsletter subscribers, and more than 150,000 Facebook fans. She’s appeared on TODAYPaula Deen, and QVC, among many other media outlets, and her first book, Southern Plate(William Morrow), has 150,000 copies in print.

Conceived and written to reflect the reality of today’s hectic schedules―and the need to gather around the dinner table―Come Home to Supper offers more than 200 deeply satisfying dishes that are budget-minded, kid-friendly, and quick. These are the everyday meals that Christy Jordan most loves to cook, and her family most loves to eat, and she serves them up with generous helpings of her folksy wisdom, gratitude, and lively stories.

Many of the recipes make ingenious use of the slow cooker or a single pot or skillet; require easily found supermarket ingredients; and are packed with time-saving tips and shortcuts. And the menu, well, it’s all good, or to put it like Christy Jordan, food to make your family “smile louder.”

My Two Cents: I wrote this book as an encouragement to families. Filled with quick and easy soul satisfying meals that taste like Grandma used to make but fit into today’s schedules, and served up with plenty of stories to encourage you to come home again.

sp cover

Southern Plate

Description from the jacket of my first book: My name is Christy Jordan and I like to feed people.

I come from a long line of Southern cooks who taught me home cooking is best. Life is good, and there is always something to be grateful for. I created Southern Plate so that I could share the recipes and stories that have been passed down through my family for more than nine generations.

You won’t find fancy food or new-fangled recipes in this cookbook. These are just easy, no-fuss Southern favorites. Some of which are Chicken and Dumplings, Homemade Banana Pudding, Aunt Looney’s Macaroni Salad, Fried Green Tomatoes, and Daddy’s Rise-and-Shine Biscuits. (I want to make one thing as clear as possible: How your mama made it is the right way! I’m going to bring it to you how my mama made it, which is the only right way for me.)

These stories and recipes come from my heart. They are a gift from my ancestors, but the ability to have them heard is a gift from you. Take a seat at the Southern Plate table; you’re with family now.

My Two Cents: This book is my heritage, with stories of my childhood and the people who raised me. If you are reading this, thank you for giving me the opportunity to tell them.