The Best Real Food Cookbooks

Learning how to nourish your body with whole foods can completely change your outlook on life and health in general.  Finding a good cookbook can be a challenge, so I am giving you a list of my favorite ones that contain real food recipes! A common misconception is that unprocessed, healthy,  homemade food doesn’t taste good. Over the years of learning how to cook, I have noticed that I have almost no desire to eat out because the food I make not only tastes good, but makes my body FEEL good. Instead of feeling bloated and lethargic after eating, real food gives me energy and sustains my blood sugar throughout the day.

You may be asking yourself,  what exactly is “real” food?  Real food is unprocessed and made from whole ingredients. It is nourishing to the body and can be eaten in its natural state. These foods include fruits and vegetables, meats, whole grains, beans, nuts, seeds, dairy, and eggs. Also included are sweeteners such as honey and maple syrup, and oils like coconut and olive oil.

The following cookbooks are ones that I personally own and have not only helped me become a better cook, but helped me gain valuable knowledge about how the food I prepare can transform my health!


The Elliott Homestead: From Scratch: Traditional, whole-foods dishes for easy, everyday meals by Shaye Elliott

I have been following Shaye’s blog for several years now. I love how honest she is about her homesteading journey and farm life! This cookbook is full of delicious, whole-food meals that everyone in your family will love.The majority of the recipes are ones that beginners could tackle without much difficulty. One of my favorites is the Shepherd’s Pie. I make several other recipes from this cookbook on a regular basis  and highly recommend it!


100 Days of Real Food: Fast & Fabulous: The Easy and Delicious Way to Cut Out Processed Food by Lisa Leake

This cookbook provides fast and easy recipes that will help you to give up processed and unhealthy food! It also includes meal plans, lunch ideas and tips on feeding your family real food. If time is a barrier that is keeping you from eating healthy, these recipes are perfect for you!


The Nourished Kitchen: Farm-to-Table Recipes for the Traditional Foods Lifestyle by Jennifer McGruther

Like the title suggests, this cookbook is full of nourishing recipes for gut-healing whole foods such as bone broth, raw dairy and fermented foods. This cookbook provides a wealth of information on how to begin healing your body with food.  The author also has a website that is so helpful if you are wanting to start raising a healthy family!


Nourishing Traditions: The Cookbook that Challenges Politically Correct Nutrition and Diet Dictocrats by Sally Fallon and Mary Enig

Nourishing Traditions is a cookbook, but also contains valuable information about nutrition and what foods are best for our bodies. This book will change the way you think about food and it’s ability to heal the body. Many who have suffered from chronic health issues have recovered (just read the reviews!) by implementing the diet changes suggested in the book.


Little House Living: The Make-Your-Own Guide to a Frugal, Simple, and Self-Sufficient Life by Merissa Alink

I bought this book a few years ago and immediately began using the simple recipes. Not only are there great food recipes, but she includes frugal DIY recipes on how to make your own cleaning and hygiene products If you want to save money AND still be able to live a natural lifestyle, you will love this cookbook!

Einkorn: Recipes for Nature’s Original Wheat by Carla Bartolucci

This cookbook teaches how to cook with the ancient grain, einkorn.  I almost exclusively bake with einkorn flour and use this cookbook every week! It contains beautiful photography and simple instructions on how to make various baked goods using einkorn flour. I make the two-hour sandwich bread recipe several times a month. If you’ve never heard of einkorn before, read my article The Beginners Guide to Using Einkorn Flour.


Ready or Not! by Nom Nom Paleo

Ready or Not is presented in a fun comic-book style and has over 150 fabulous paleo recipes. I love that contains recipes for the Instant Pot, which (if you haven’t noticed) I have a small obsession with. The recipes are gluten, grain and dairy free and contain no refined sugars! Some of my favorite recipes from the cookbook are the Sunday Gravy and Roasted Onion Soup. I use several of these recipes on a regular basis when I am meal-prepping for the week. With this cookbook you will never be bored with your food!


Nourished Beginnings Baby Food by Renee Kohley

This cookbook will challenge everything you’ve been taught about what a baby’s first foods should be. By getting back to the basics of traditional foods, you will learn how to nourish your baby in every stage of their development. It contains nutrient-dense recipes for babies and toddlers that even your older children will like. It has hardly left my counter-top since I got it! Learn more about how we make our own baby food the easy and inexpensive way.

Preserving Everything by Leda Meredith

Food preservation is so important when you are growing your own food. This book teaches valuable skills on how to can, ferment, dehydrate and store meats, fruits and vegetables. Once I started using this cookbook, I learned how to utilize my dehydrator to make things like this Berry and Spinach Fruit Leather!

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Comment below with your favorite real food cookbooks!


  • Tina
    Posted March 27, 2018 7:47 am 0Likes

    Thank you for this wonderful list! Very helpful.

  • Tara | i Dream of Simple
    Posted March 27, 2018 9:07 am 0Likes

    This looks like a great list of healthy cookbooks! I use and love 100 Days of Real Food! I love the simplicity of her recipes and approach to healthy eating. Thanks!

  • Karen
    Posted March 27, 2018 10:55 am 0Likes

    I hadn’t heard of the Little House cookbook. My daughter & I are reading the series together right now. This cookbook will make a great addition to her Easter basket.

  • Mini
    Posted March 27, 2018 1:50 pm 0Likes

    This is an amazing collection of real food cookbooks. I currently don’t have any of these but I’ll buy one soon. All these cookbooks look great and I am sure the recipes and content of each of these cookbooks will be awesome. Thanks for sharing this collection!

  • Marya
    Posted March 27, 2018 6:16 pm 0Likes

    Great recommendations for moms interested in traditional eating. I love Nom Nom Paleo!

  • Samantha
    Posted March 27, 2018 8:10 pm 0Likes

    Thank you for this list. I am always looking for new cookbooks to add to my collection, but never know which ones are really worth it.

  • Lyndsey
    Posted March 28, 2018 8:11 am 0Likes

    this is a great list! Check out Lexie’s clean kitchen, its one of my favorites!

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