Kosher is a Hebrew word that means “fit” and refers to the strict dietary standards of traditional Jewish law. These are very detailed rules that spring from religious tradition and truly keeping kosher means having a religious supervisor around to make sure all the religious laws are followed.
That being said, not all Jewish communities follow kosher guidelines strictly. And so when you talk about kosher cuisine, there are basically two types: kosher-style cooking and eating kosher.
Kosher-style cooking is any food that celebrates Jewish culture but may not follow traditional kosher guidelines. Any cuisine can be cooked kosher-style as long as it uses the proper ingredients and kitchen equipment. That’s why you’ve got vegetarian kosher dishes, or seafood kosher dishes, etc.
Eating kosher, meanwhile, is eating food that’s been prepared and cooked according to strict Jewish religious laws. These can be complicated for a newbie- one example requires that red meat and milk products must never be combined or even touched by the same utensil – but for followers of Judaism, such rules are imperative.
This is why kosher cookbooks are a handy thing to have if one wants to try kosher cooking. The recipe selections in these books already take these kosher rules into account so that all one needs to do is to follow the recipe.
There are kosher cookbooks that feature a general selection of recipes from Jewish communities worldwide. Others will highlight specific cuisine types like Ashkenazi or Sephardi cuisine. Some books will present modern fusion recipes cooked and prepared kosher-style.
The best kosher cookbook is one that doesn’t only have delicious recipe collections but also offers a view into the Jewish way of life. Using food as a lens, these books provide not just gustatory delight but also insightful revelations and context on a community that has become widespread because of diaspora.
Here are my top ten kosher cookbooks on Amazon.
Best Kosher Cookbooks
- The Simply Kosher Cookbook: 100+ Recipes for Quick Weeknight Meals and Easy Holiday Favorites Paperback
- Bubbe and Me in the Kitchen: A Kosher Cookbook of Beloved Recipes and Modern Twists Paperback – Illustrated
- Modern Kosher: Global Flavors, New Traditions Hardcover
- The New Kosher Hardcover
- More Real Life Kosher Cooking: Approachable recipes for memorable dishes Hardcover
- Kosher Modern: New Techniques and Great Recipes for Unlimited Kosher Cooking.
- Fresh from the Kitchen: Kosher Cooking for Beginners to Gourmets Hardcover
- Modern Jewish Cooking: Recipes & Customs for Today's Kitchen Hardcover – Illustrated
- 100 Best Jewish Recipes: Traditional and Contemporary Kosher Cuisine from around the World Hardcover
- Spice and Spirit: The Complete Kosher Jewish Cookbook
1. The Simply Kosher Cookbook: 100+ Recipes for Quick Weeknight Meals and Easy Holiday Favorites Paperback
This cookbook features simple and practical recipes for the kosher and non-kosher home cook. The selection ranges from traditional cuisine to modern fusion with some unique blends of the two thrown in. Samples include Matzo Pancakes, Shakshuka with Sausage, and Sweet Potato Pie.
It also includes menu planning for Jewish holidays and events. The recipes are flavorful, quick to do and come with slow-cooker and Instant Pot options. They are organized into user-friendly categories, like 30-minute meals, 5-ingredient dishes, one-pot dinners, and the like. A section on Kosher symbols with a link to their website is also provided.
Readers liked how the book was organized to save a home cook’s time. Another found it to have a realistic view of a kosher kitchen.
Recommended for newbies and casual home cooks.
2. Bubbe and Me in the Kitchen: A Kosher Cookbook of Beloved Recipes and Modern Twists Paperback – Illustrated
As a tribute to the author’s Jewish grandmother, this cookbook presents more than 80 heirloom recipes that range from traditional and modern Ashkenazi, Sephardi to Mizrahi dishes, together with humorous generational perspectives on kosher cuisine.
The featured dishes include traditional ones like babka, brisket, and matzo ball soup and international kosher cuisine like za'atar pita chips, forbidden rice bowls, and Persian chicken stew. The selection is divided into recipe categories such as fish, soups, and desserts. There’s also a section on Passover recipes and menu planning for Jewish holidays.
Recipes are easy to follow and include measuring conversion charts for easy reference. Those who’ve tried out the recipes said that they are flavorful and are easily adaptable for any diet preference.
Recommended for anyone looking for accessible kosher recipes for home cooking.
3. Modern Kosher: Global Flavors, New Traditions Hardcover
This cookbook highlights kosher-friendly recipes gathered from the communities of diaspora all over the world. There are 100 recipes here that range from those reflecting Ashkenazi, Sephardic, and contemporary Israeli traditions, to kosher cuisine that’s influenced by Asian, European, and Latin cultures. There’s even a selection on practical pantry recipes for quick, everyday cooking.
Recipes have creative flavors and are easily adaptable for gluten-free and vegan diets. They’re laid out in reader-friendly formatting, with a color photo of the dish. Samples of the recipes include Duck Pozole Rojo, Sevilla-style Oxtail Soup, Latkes With Smoked Salmon, Pickled Blackberry and Wasabi Cream, Smoked White Fish Knish, tacos made from gribenes, and Coffee-Braised Lamb Shoulder in Pita Bread.
Recommended for anyone looking for kosher-friendly modern fusion cuisine.
4. The New Kosher Hardcover
This cookbook redefines kosher cooking by updating recipes to reflect a modern and creative sensibility. There are over 100 recipes here from all over the world that range from fish and soup to main dishes and desserts. The selection includes dishes like Homemade Challah with Za’atar Everything Topping, 5-Minute Sundried Tomato Hummus, Easy Dill Chicken and Stew, and Crispy Rice Cake with Saffron Crust.
Recipes are easy to follow and use ingredients that are pantry staples or available in local stores. There are also color photos of the dishes. Most of them are not time-consuming or require multiple steps.
Readers liked how the book uses kosher rules as an excuse to ramp up the creativity of the dishes. Those that tried out the recipes found them flavorful and accessible.
Recommended for newbie cooks and anyone looking for healthier recipes.
5. More Real Life Kosher Cooking: Approachable recipes for memorable dishes Hardcover
This cookbook features homey and creative cooking recipes that are easy to do but pack in a lot of flavors. There are over 150 recipes here ranging from Caramel Macchiato Rugelach, Meat-Stuffed Garlic Bread, Wontons in Garlic Sauce, Rainbow Salad, to Peanut Butter Tiramisu.
Recipes are broken down into easy steps and use ingredients that are accessible. Each one comes with Plan Ahead and/or Freezer tips. There are photos for every dish and a comprehensive index for easy reference.
Readers liked that the recipes are not complicated and easy to follow. Another liked that the author is easily accessible on social media for further inputs about her recipes.
Recommended for cooks of all skill levels and for anyone looking for kosher-friendly dishes for entertaining.
6. Kosher Modern: New Techniques and Great Recipes for Unlimited Kosher Cooking. Hardcover
This cookbook is a selection of kosher gourmet recipes from a wide range of cuisines. It focuses on ingredient substitutions and techniques for making any dish kosher, often making it even better and healthier than the original.
Recipes are organized by protein types. Many of them are easily adaptable to serve a variety of menus and occasions. Particularly useful are its introductory “3-in-1 recipes” which show how a dish can be modified into three ways: meat, dairy, and pareve.
Samples of its selection include Miso Glazed Black Cod, Fried Pea and Parmesan Ravioli, Hamentashen with Four Fillings, and Ceviche with Avocado and Tortilla Chips.
Readers found this a useful cookbook for creative culinary inspiration. One found their source list for the ingredients very detailed and well thought out. Another cited its paneer recipe as one of the most detailed that she’s ever seen.
Recommended for gourmet enthusiasts and creative home cooks.
7. Fresh from the Kitchen: Kosher Cooking for Beginners to Gourmets Hardcover
This is a practical, beginner’s guide to kosher cooking. It has 300 recipes that range from traditional classics to modern fusion cuisine. It also has holiday menus for every important Jewish occasion.
The book starts with a primer on how to set up a kosher kitchen, including a list of essential cooking equipment and their uses in various areas of kosher cooking. Recipes are written with clear and explicit instructions. There are also great illustrations that accompany the recipe selection.
Samples of the recipes include Glazed Corned Beef, Oriental Baked Fish, Cheese Blintzes, Yerushalmi Kugel, Tabbouli Salad, Marinated Peppers, Challah, and its kosher version of Apple Pie.
Recommended for recipe collectors and newbie home cooks.
8. Modern Jewish Cooking: Recipes & Customs for Today's Kitchen (Jewish Cookbook, Jewish Gifts, Over 100 Most Jewish Food Recipes) Hardcover – Illustrated
This cookbook updates traditional Jewish dishes to reflect the values of the modern-day food movement. There are 175 recipes here that highlight the use of fresh seasonal produce. Familiar favorites like latkes, matzoh balls, and challah are made using smart techniques and vibrant spices.
Recipes have easy, step-by-step instructions and the techniques are accompanied by how-to photos. There is a section for holiday meal planning. Beautiful food photography is also featured in this book.
Readers liked how most of the recipes are vegetable-friendly. Another liked its selection of non-dairy side dishes.
Recommended for cooks of all skill levels.
9. 100 Best Jewish Recipes: Traditional and Contemporary Kosher Cuisine from around the World Hardcover
This is a comprehensive selection of kosher recipes curated by one of the world’s culinary experts on Jewish food. There is enough variety here for any meal type and occasion, ranging from soups and appetizers to main dishes and pastries. It also includes step-by-step instructions on how to entertain throughout the Jewish festival seasons.
Recipes are easy and fool-proof for beginner and modest home cooks. Expert cooks, meanwhile, will find the selection creatively inspiring. Samples include Sephardi-Style Pizzas, Moroccan Chicken Pilaf with Fruit and Nuts, Greek-Jewish Lamb Fricassee, and German Butter Kuchen with Date Filling.
Recommended for anyone looking for international kosher cuisine recipes.
10. Spice and Spirit: The Complete Kosher Jewish Cookbook (A Kosher living classic)
This is a classic cookbook that collects most Ashkenazi basic recipes and explains the principles of kosher cooking in a straightforward way. Samples include Blintzes and Chicken Soup, Szechuan Chicken, and Aduki-Squash Soup.
Recipes are a mix of easy and complex, but there are helpful diagrams for the more complicated recipes that require specific cooking techniques. A comprehensive index helps track down the recipes easily by name, along with a picture code that classifies the quick recipes and those that require more prepping time. Practical guidelines for cooking kosher are present all over the sections.
Recommended for heritage cookbook collectors and those looking for essential Ashkenazi recipes.
THE SIMPLY KOSHER COOKBOOK: 100+ RECIPES FOR QUICK WEEKNIGHT MEALS AND EASY HOLIDAY FAVORITES by Nina Safar
Best for cooks who want quality kosher food but don’t want to spend too much time prepping and cooking, this cookbook will give you all the recipes that one should need either for regular meals or holiday feasts.
These are simple recipes that mostly require pantry and fridge staples. They don’t also require expensive kitchen equipment. They’re flexible enough so that any cook with moderate skills can easily substitute the ingredients to fit any diet or food restrictions. It’s also user-friendly; it has two indexes, one by meal type and the regular alphabetized menu.
Pick this as a starter cookbook to build your skills before moving to more sophisticated kosher cookbook recipes.