If you’re new to the paleo diet, you might wonder what the fuss is all about. Paleo is all about going caveman in your dietary habits. It’s a way to eat based on how our paleolithic ancestors did during the Stone Age.
This means that one is only allowed to eat meat from grass fed animals, fruits, and vegetables. Stuff like dairy, grains, legumes, and processed food aren’t allowed.
These patterns are followed because paleo proponents believe the human body isn’t built for eating food that comes from agriculture. They say doing so is the reason why there are a lot of people who are diabetic, obese, or dealing with a cardiac condition in our society today.
You may or may not believe in their reasoning but there are benefits to going paleo. A diet rich in fruits, nuts, and veggies has all the elements of a healthy diet. Also, the absence of processed carbs and sugar will help you get rid of excess weight.
That’s why even if it’s more restrictive than most diets, there are still lots of people who follow the paleo approach.
Yes, it isn’t easy but it does help a lot if you have a paleo cookbook by your side. Because if your idea of a paleo diet is chicken and broccoli every day, you’ll crash and burn.
A good paleo cookbook will show you that there’s a variety of whole foods that you can eat and enjoy. Some books will even plan your daily meals for you so that you’ll be able to achieve your weight loss goals.
The best ones are those that have quick, easy recipes and use pantry staples. They’re the ones that don’t get too heavy on the paleo philosophy but instead focus on featuring practical recipes that anyone can do.
In this list, I am featuring the best cookbooks that will help you whip up paleo-friendly meals that your family can enjoy even if they’re not into paleo dieting. Here are my top 10 paleo cookbooks.
Best Paleo Cookbooks
- Quick Prep Paleo: Simple Whole-Food Meals with 5 to 15 Minutes of Hands-On Time Paperback
- The Simple Paleo Kitchen: 60 Delicious Gluten- and Grain-Free Recipes Without the Fuss
- Clean Paleo Family Cookbook: 100 Delicious Squeaky Clean Paleo and Keto Recipes to Please Everyone at the Table Paperback – Illustrated
- Practical Paleo, 2nd Edition (Updated and Expanded): A Customized Approach to Health and a Whole-Foods Lifestyle Paperback
- Paleo Baking at Home: The Ultimate Resource for Delicious Grain-Free Cookies, Cakes, Bars, Bread, and More
- The One-Pot Paleo Cookbook: 100 + Effortless Meals for Your Slow Cooker, Skillet, Sheet Pan, and More Paperback
- Asian Paleo: Easy, Fresh Recipes to Make Ahead or Enjoy Right Now from I Heart Umami
- The 30-Minute Paleo Cookbook: 90+ Delicious Recipes for Busy People
- The Paleo for Beginners: Essentials to Get Started Paperback
- Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans (Volume 1) Hardcover
1. Quick Prep Paleo: Simple Whole-Food Meals with 5 to 15 Minutes of Hands-On Time Paperback
If you want your paleo meals quick and convenient, then this cookbook is for you. It has 75 recipes that take about 5 to 15 minutes of prepping. The collection is a mix of stovetop, oven, Instant Pot, and slow cooker recipes.
Recipes are detailed but uncomplicated. They also use ingredients that are easy to obtain or are paleo pantry staples. And each one is accompanied by a color photo. There are also helpful hints and tips scattered all over the book.
You don’t have to be strictly paleo in order to enjoy the recipes. The flavorful dishes will serve as an entry point for anyone interested in eating healthy and delicious food. While readers like this book for the minimal prep and cooking times, they also love it for its fool-proof recipes.
2. The Simple Paleo Kitchen: 60 Delicious Gluten- and Grain-Free Recipes Without the Fuss
This is a no frills cookbook for those on the paleo diet. Most of the dishes here can all be done in just 5 steps or fewer which is makes it convenient for busy households.
Many of the recipes are keto friendly or are keto adaptable. For those who are into the Whole30 diet program, there is a wide selection of Whole30 compliant recipes. There’s also a section that features cooking options for the Instant Pot and slow cooker.
One reader liked its chapter on Fast & Slow Dinners because it features recipes that can be cooked in a pressure cooker. They’re easy to follow which is useful for those not familiar with using a pressure cooker.
3. Clean Paleo Family Cookbook: 100 Delicious Squeaky Clean Paleo and Keto Recipes to Please Everyone at the Table Paperback – Illustrated
This cookbook features recipes that are completely free of dairy, grains, gluten, legumes, soy, and artificial ingredients. It categorizes them into traditional paleo, squeaky clean paleo, and keto paleo.
The recipes are easy to follow, but not all are accompanied with photos. The food styling and photography for this book, however, is gorgeous. It also doesn’t have nutritional info for each dish.
But there’s a good mix of recipes here, from kid-friendly ones to those with multiple steps. There are also recipes that require special equipment like an air fryer or a milk frother. The sauce recipes are mayo-based.
Readers liked this book for its relatively simple but delicious recipes and because they use easy to find ingredients. If you’re looking for family friendly paleo menu options, this book is for you.
4. Practical Paleo, 2nd Edition (Updated and Expanded): A Customized Approach to Health and a Whole-Foods Lifestyle Paperback
This is an updated edition that includes 2 new chapters to help you get started with the paleo diet and introduce you to the 4R Protocol, 3 new 30-day plans, and 40 new recipes.
There are over 150 recipes here and assorted meal plans to guide you in addressing common health concerns. The recipes are easy to follow, flavorful and are adaptable for a variety of stomach issues.
This book is designed for anyone who’s interested in the paleo diet but doesn't know where to start or is ambivalent about getting into it. There is lots of information that is all presented clearly and simply.
Readers liked that the book features tailored meal plans for those who have specific health issues. There are sections here for a variety of medical needs like autoimmune, healthy heart, fat loss, digestive health, liver detox, blood sugar imbalance, etc. Each chapter comes with suggested meal plans.
5. Paleo Baking at Home: The Ultimate Resource for Delicious Grain-Free Cookies, Cakes, Bars, Breads and More
This cookbook features 60 recipes that are spot-on paleo recreations of traditional desserts like brownies, cakes, cookies, muffins, pies, and sweet breads. All of these are gluten- and processed sugar-free pastries.
The recipes are easy to follow and use coconut sugar, maple sugar, maple syrup, and raw honey in spare amounts. But even with the small quantities of natural sugar, readers are surprised that the desserts still turn to be deliciously sweet.
Readers also liked the book because it features both weight and volume measurements. If you’re looking for a cookbook to satisfy your sweet cravings while on a paleo diet, this is an essential read.
6. The One-Pot Paleo Cookbook: 100 + Effortless Meals for Your Slow Cooker, Skillet, Sheet Pan, and More Paperback
This cookbook features fuss-free paleo recipes that you can cook with a single vessel like stock pots, sheet pans, skillets, and electric pressure cookers. Each recipe is fairly simple which will appeal to those new to paleo.
The recipes are categorized into eggs & breakfast, soups & stews, vegetable mains, seafood & shellfish, poultry, and beef & pork. Ingredients are listed in bullet style in a sidebar and are easily sourced from your regular grocery store. Measurements are in US standard and each recipe has nutritional information as well as suggestions on how to make recipe variations.
Each recipe could be accomplished in just 45 minutes except for the ones that require slow cooking. There are, however, few photos in this book. Despite this, readers liked the book for its well-written and easy to follow recipes which turn out to be delicious.
7. Asian Paleo: Easy, Fresh Recipes to Make Ahead or Enjoy Right Now from I Heart Umami
This cookbook features 75 paleo recipes that were inspired by traditional Asian dishes from China, Japan, Thailand, and Vietnam. Some of the popular recipes from the author’s food blog I Heart Umami are included in this book. It’s a mix of both Asian take-out classics and some new ones. All are free of gluten, wheat, soy, and sugar.
The recipes are easily organized and use ingredients that can easily be found in local groceries. Each recipe is accompanied by a color photo of the dish. There are also recipes for sides and sauces.
There’s a section for meal suggestions on a weeknight and another one for meals that can be cooked in under 30 minutes. Readers liked this book for its convenient shopping lists and its clever cooking tips and tricks. If you like an Asian twist for your paleo diet, this is a good cookbook for you to start with.
8. The 30-Minute Paleo Cookbook: 90+ Delicious Recipes for Busy People
This cookbook features a diverse collection of paleo recipes covering all meal types that can be prepped in 30 minutes or less by just about anyone.
The opening sections introduce the reader to the paleo diet and discuss meal planning, prep, and time-saving techniques. It also gives helpful tips on how to source ingredients and supplies.
Recipes are arranged thematically: breakfasts, soups and salads, vegetables, seafood, poultry, beef/pork/lamb, desserts, and staple ingredient recipes. Each one is accompanied by nutritional info and some special dietary details.
There are not many photos in this book but readers still like this book for its varied selection of cuisine. Plus, there’s a sampling of Eastern European, American, Asian, and Southwestern dishes.
9. The Paleo for Beginners: Essentials to Get Started Paperback
This is a starter cookbook for those curious about the paleo diet. The book version has 114 recipes and a list of 145 paleo-friendly foods that you can enjoy. It also offers a 7-day step-by-step plan for newbies.
Recipes are easy to follow but they are not accompanied with photos of the finished dishes.There are a few recipes that use exotic ingredients but for the most part, the recipes use ingredients that are easily available in your local stores.
Readers liked the paleo shopping guide that is included in the meal plan. For those looking for a quick but comprehensive read on paleo, this is the book one must have.
10. Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans (Volume 1) Hardcover
This is not your typical cookbook in terms of content and design but it does offer 100 fool-proof paleo and gluten-free recipes.
The recipes are Asian-influenced and California-inspired and use paleo sriracha, magic mushroom powder, and paleo mayonnaise to create the flavor foundation for all of the dishes featured. There are also 900 step-by-step photographs and cartoons to accompany the recipe selection.
Not all of the recipes are quick to do; some will require a fair amount of equipment. There are also recipes that use expensive ingredients.
The overall tone of the writing is humorous and full of personality. It is easy to read and the recipes are full of tips and tricks. Readers liked the unintimidating manner of the book; one said it was “like reading recipes your best friend has written for you.” If you like reading cookbooks with a creative bent, this is for you.
QUICK PREP PALEO: SIMPLE WHOLE-FOOD MEALS WITH 5 TO 15 MINUTES OF HANDS-ON TIME PAPERBACK by Mary Smith
This cookbook checks all the right boxes and that will appeal to anyone who’s looking to eat healthy food but won’t commit to a full paleo diet. It has delicious recipes that are accompanied by equally beautiful photos. It uses easy-to-source ingredients and doesn’t require long hours of prepping and cooking.
It also has the right amount of info about the paleo diet, without trying to sell you the whole paleo lifestyle. It’s a great cookbook not only for anyone curious about paleo but also for those looking for more variety in quick paleo dishes.