Some say that men eat and read differently. And while I have doubts about the scientific validity of the premise, the publishing industry would have me believe otherwise. This is probably why there are a lot of cookbooks out there that are targeted for the male demographic.
And this is not necessarily a bad thing, btw. Cookbooks for guys may go stereotypically heavy on male-centric recipes (including meat heavy ones) but they do have value. The best ones do more than just dispense recipes. They explain techniques and demystify ingredients as straightforward as one can be.
When choosing the best cookbook for men, you need to find one that’s practical in both content and design. This means avoiding male celebrity driven cookbooks (because these can be too fussy) or the hyper-specialized ones (because they’ll end up useless).
It means choosing a book with a user-friendly design that a man can work with in a kitchen. It should be structured for step-by-step instructions. The recipes should be consistent; they should be easy to do and still taste delicious.
Most importantly, it does more than showcase recipes. It should encourage men to get creative with making their food. Because cooking doesn’t have to be stuck with gender stereotyping; after all, some of the best home cooks are men too.
Here are ten of the best cookbooks for guys on Amazon. Whether you want to learn how to barbecue, plan a romantic meal or just whip up some quick comfort food, these cookbooks will awaken the foodie in you and get you excited to start cooking.
Table of Contents
- Best Cookbooks For Guys
- 1. How to Cook Everything: 2,000 Simple Recipes for Great Food,10th Anniversary Edition Hardcover
- 2. How to Cook for Beginners: An Easy Cookbook for Learning the Basics Paperback
- 3. Vegan Man: The manual for cooking amazing plant-based food – 64 delicious, easy recipes (Haynes Manuals) Hardcover
- 4. Man Made Meals: The Essential Cookbook for Guys Paperback – Illustrated
- 5. Just a French Guy Cooking: Easy Recipes and Kitchen Hacks for Rookies Hardcover – Illustrated
- 6. The Single Guy Cookbook: How to Cook Comfort Food Favorites Faster, Easier and Cheaper than Going Out Paperback
- 7. A Man, A Pan, A Plan: 100 Delicious & Nutritious One-Pan Recipes You Can Make Right Now!: A Cookbook Paperback
- 8. One-Pan Cookbook for Men: 100 Easy Single-Skillet Recipes to Step Up Your Cooking Game Paperback
- 9. The Dude Diet: Clean(ish) Food for People Who Like to Eat Dirty (Dude Diet, 1) Hardcover – Illustrated
- 10. Man Meets Stove: A cookbook for men who've never cooked anything without a microwave. Paperback
- Top Pick
Best Cookbooks For Guys
- How to Cook Everything: 2,000 Simple Recipes for Great Food,10th Anniversary Edition Hardcover
- How to Cook for Beginners: An Easy Cookbook for Learning the Basics Paperback
- Vegan Man: The manual for cooking amazing plant-based food – 64 delicious, easy recipes (Haynes Manuals) Hardcover
- Man Made Meals: The Essential Cookbook for Guys Paperback – Illustrated
- Just a French Guy Cooking: Easy Recipes and Kitchen Hacks for Rookies Hardcover – Illustrated
- The Single Guy Cookbook: How to Cook Comfort Food Favorites Faster, Easier and Cheaper than Going Out Paperback
- A Man, A Pan, A Plan: 100 Delicious & Nutritious One-Pan Recipes You Can Make Right Now!: A Cookbook Paperback
- One-Pan Cookbook for Men: 100 Easy Single-Skillet Recipes to Step Up Your Cooking Game Paperback
- The Dude Diet: Clean(ish) Food for People Who Like to Eat Dirty (Dude Diet, 1) Hardcover – Illustrated
- Man Meets Stove: A cookbook for men who've never cooked anything without a microwave. Paperback
1. How to Cook Everything: 2,000 Simple Recipes for Great Food,10th Anniversary Edition Hardcover
This is the anniversary edition of an award-winning cookbook that’s geared for beginner home cooks. It features more than 2,000 recipes and their variations, seventy percent of them new, and includes many new techniques that experienced cooks can add to their repertoire.
Sample of recipes include Beer-and-Butter Chicken Wings, Roasted Corn Chowder, BLT Salad, Paella with Chicken and Chorizo, Caramelized French Toast, and Popcorn Brittle.
Bittman is known for his straight forward approach to dishing out culinary advice and recommendations so this book should appeal to male sensibilities. In this latest update, there are now more helpful lists, new illustrations which incorporate more detail than the photos and an index of “Essential Recipes” in every chapter.
Readers said that this book is written as a starting point for any beginner cook and not as a comprehensive culinary bible. Still, the variety of easy recipes and the wealth of cooking information makes this a somewhat encyclopedic book. This should appeal to any guy looking for just one cookbook to set him up for life.
2. How to Cook for Beginners: An Easy Cookbook for Learning the Basics Paperback
This entry level cookbook teaches all the basic cooking techniques and tips in an easy and engaging format. Its recipe selection is designed to teach you skills step-by-step, from mixing a simple seasoning blend to roasting a whole chicken and making gravy.
Samples of the recipes include Apple Berry Dutch Baby, Homemade Guacamole, a Greek Salad, Roasted Sweet Potato Fries, Maple-Roasted Pork Tenderloin with Apples, Garlic, and Tomato Steamed Mussels, and Chocolate-Chipotle Brownies. There are recipes for breakfast, snacks and small bites, salad and veggies, mains, and desserts.
One reader found this book “a cookbook under the guise of a textbook”. Another found the recipes accessible and easy to follow. Recommended for anyone looking for an easy read on learning how to cook in a home kitchen.
3. Vegan Man: The manual for cooking amazing plant-based food – 64 delicious, easy recipes (Haynes Manuals) Hardcover
This book is part of the Hayne Practical Manual series which is geared towards DIY enthusiasts and professional garage mechanics. The author is British and is a self-taught cook who’s adopted a vegan lifestyle.
The vegan recipes featured in this book cover a good range and are accompanied by color photos. They are written in a clear and straightforward manner and include info on nutrient sources and exercise-specific needs. Samples of recipes include Vegan Sausage Roll Bites, 4-Ingredient Peanut Butter Hotcakes, Chickpea, Butternut Squash & Spinach Curry, and West African Peanut Stew.
Readers liked that the recipes use familiar ingredients. One found the book’s curry recipes the easiest to follow and delicious. Recommended for anyone looking for a practical, male-centric cookbook on vegan cooking.
4. Man Made Meals: The Essential Cookbook for Guys Paperback – Illustrated
This cookbook goes beyond barbecue and grilling recipes and is being marketed as the Joy of Cooking cookbook for guys. There are 300 recipes here with testosterone-driven names like Blowtorch Oatmeal, Fire-Eater Chicken Wings, Black Kale Caesar, Down East Lobster Rolls, Skillet Rib Steak, Porchetta, Finger-Burner Lamb Chops, Yardbird’s Fried Chicken, and Blackened Salmon.
This book will teach you about the tools and techniques, as well as how to multi-task, prep before cooking and clean as you go. It references other several well-known male chefs, as well. Recipes are clear and easy to follow.
One reader liked its chapter on mixing drinks at home. Another liked that the recipes are flavorful and taste good. Recommended for college guys or dads looking for a useful male-centric cookbook.
5. Just a French Guy Cooking: Easy Recipes and Kitchen Hacks for Rookies Hardcover – Illustrated
For fans of the YouTube sensation French Guy Cooking, this cookbook features 100 of his favorite recipes that are easy and accessible for anyone who’s getting started with cooking.
The recipes are his versions of French and international classics and include ingenious kitchen hacks so that any guy can easily make great and delicious food. The book also features includes alternative names and ingredients for newbies who aren't familiar with aubergines and other French words.
Readers liked the way the book presents each recipe as an opportunity to learn a technique and add one’s own flair to it. Experienced cooks will find the recipe selection basic but for newbies, it’s a great way to build up your confidence in the kitchen. And if you’re hankering for more of his stuff after going through this cookbook, there’s always his YouTube channel to binge on.
Recommended for newbies looking for easy French-inspired international recipes.
6. The Single Guy Cookbook: How to Cook Comfort Food Favorites Faster, Easier and Cheaper than Going Out Paperback
Written for the bachelor, this cookbook showcases man-centric recipes like Sizzling Skillet Steak and Twice (Sort of) Baked Potato, Kick-Ass Fish Tacos, Lazy Lasagna for 1, Stupid-Easy Pot Roast, and Mind-Blowing Meatballs with Ziti.
It also teaches cooking techniques and provides useful information on how to make a gourmet meal out of leftovers. Recipes are easy to follow and are good for one to two people. They also use easy-to-source ingredients.
Readers found the recipes practical and useful, although lacking in illustrations. One liked that each recipe does not have a long list of ingredients. Another found the commentary humorous. Recommended for single guys everywhere.
7. A Man, A Pan, A Plan: 100 Delicious & Nutritious One-Pan Recipes You Can Make Right Now!: A Cookbook Paperback
The editors of Men’s Health compiled this cookbook which features home-cooked recipes for guys who have moderate cooking skills. The recipe selection is varied, from breakfast mainstays to party side dishes and traditional mains. Samples of the recipes include Buffalo Chicken Meatballs, Four-Chile Pork Chops with Grilled Pineapple, and Blueberry Cobbler.
It includes useful info on the kitchen essentials that a bachelor must have as well as practical sections on how to read a recipe, clean up, etc. Recipes are straightforward and are portioned for two persons. Each one comes with nutritional info about the dish.
Some recipes will use more than one pot or pan but in general, the recipes selected are fuss-free and will only require a single piece of cookware. There’s enough variety in the selection to please a discerning cook and recipes turn out to be reliable and delicious.
Recommended for guys looking for easy gourmet recipes.
8. One-Pan Cookbook for Men: 100 Easy Single-Skillet Recipes to Step Up Your Cooking Game Paperback
This is a beginner cookbook that features easy and quick one-pan recipes that any guy can easily use for making meals. Written by a female chef, it includes simple advice and guidance for mastering the basic cooking techniques which should be perfect for anyone who doesn’t want to spend hours reading through complicated culinary jargon.
There’s a wide variety of nutritious recipes in this book. They’re easy to follow and don’t use hard-to-find ingredients. Samples of the recipes include Ham and Eggs Bake, Thai-inspired Veggie Noodles, Easy Roast Chicken and Veggies, and Bourbon Pineapple Upside Down Cake.
Readers liked this book for its uncomplicated but delicious meal planning. One liked it because its easy enough for newbies while creative enough to interest skilled home cooks. Many recommend this as this as a great male DIY guide to cooking healthy food with no-fuss cleaning up.
9. The Dude Diet: Clean(ish) Food for People Who Like to Eat Dirty (Dude Diet, 1) Hardcover – Illustrated
This is basically a cookbook about a chef’s attempts at developing healthy versions of the food that her boyfriend loves to eat. Her boyfriend figures prominently in the book’s narrative and may turn off those who just want to get to the recipes.
There are more than 125 of them here, ranging from weeknight meals to snacks and side dishes. They’re easy to follow and use ingredients that are easy to obtain. There are also 102 full-color photographs throughout the book.
Readers liked the recipes because they are simple and tasty. One recommended this book for those trying to incorporate more healthy foods into the diet. Best for anyone looking for healthy recipes to wean their significant other from junk food.
10. Man Meets Stove: A cookbook for men who've never cooked anything without a microwave. Paperback
More of a fun read than a traditional cookbook, this book features recipes that are mostly “man-food” with some selections of “impress-your-date” food. It’s the type of recipe selection that men between the ages of 18 and 35 will find useful.
Recipes are simple and are fully explained in basic, tough-guy language. There’s a lot of male humor all throughout and each recipe even has its own playlist to listen to. Some samples of the recipes include Drunk Broccoli, Eggscellent Eggs, Grilled Cheese Sandwich Three-Way – Roast Beast, Chicken and Other Vegetables, Spicy Bacon Candy – and Wake Me Up Before you Go Go Brownies (Caffeinated Brownies).
Readers found its humor over-the-top but there’s a lot of useful info that will enable your basic man to survive in a kitchen. One liked the recommended playlist for each recipe. Recommended for anyone looking for a good comedy cookbook.
MAN MADE MEALS: THE ESSENTIAL COOKBOOK FOR GUYS by Steven Raichlen
Written by a barbecue expert, this cookbook is anything but a grilling cookbook. The recipes here run the gamut from meat to vegetarian dishes, along with salads and tartares. And while there may be a bunch of gourmet recipes as most cookbooks will usually have, the rest of the recipes are perfectly doable even for the most hardcore of men.
It’s also user-friendly: there are step-by-step instructions with how-to photos. The sections are divided by course and by ingredient for easy reference. There’s also an introductory primer for stocking a kitchen with pantry staples and essential equipment.
Also noteworthy is the inclusion of interview profiles from male chefs, food personalities, musicians, and more. These make for an interesting read if you want a break from reading the recipes. Overall, a great cookbook for guys looking for delicious and healthy man meal recipes.