18 new cookbooks for the baking season

Grab a mixing bowl, heat the oven and check out these new cookbooks
“Baking with Dorie: Sweet, Salty and Simple” by Dorie Greenspan (Mariner, $35) and “A New Take on Cake: 175 Beautiful, Doable Cake Mix Recipes for Bundts, Layers, Slabs, Loaves, Cookies, and More!” By Anne Byrn (Clarkson Potter, $26.99)

“Baking with Dorie: Sweet, Salty and Simple” by Dorie Greenspan (Mariner, $35) and “A New Take on Cake: 175 Beautiful, Doable Cake Mix Recipes for Bundts, Layers, Slabs, Loaves, Cookies, and More!” By Anne Byrn (Clarkson Potter, $26.99)

As home cooks turned to their inner baker for comfort in the homebound days of the pandemic, the publishing world was watching. It was entirely predictable, then, that the fall cookbook season’s flour-focused books would be more varied and plentiful than ever.

Here are some standouts to keep loaves rising and mixers humming through 2021 and beyond.


If there’s one book I could imagine baking my way through, cover to cover, it would be Baking With Dorie: Sweet, Salty and Simple by Dorie Greenspan (Mariner, $35). Recipes in the baking icon’s 14th cookbook begin with breakfast, end with supper, and include all manner of not-too-fussy treats in between, such as clam chowder pie, cranberry spice squares, and peanut butter chocolate-chip cookies, Paris-style.


With A New Take on Cake: 175 Beautiful, Doable Cake Mix Recipes for Bundts, Layers, Slabs, Loaves, Cookies, and More! (Clarkson Potter, $26.99), Anne Byrn, a former Atlanta Journal-Constitution food editor, and bestselling author of “The Cake Mix Doctor,” shares a bounty of clever new tricks for using the shortcut-loving baker’s favorite secret weapon in Instagram-worthy ways, with and without a cake pan: melted ice cream cake, rosemary-lemon syrup loaf, buttermilk spice doughnuts and more.

“Cheryl Day’s Treasury of Southern Baking” by Cheryl Day (Artisan, $40).

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As a direct descendant of an enslaved pastry cook, Cheryl Day, co-owner of Savannah’s celebrated Back in the Day Bakery, keeps her ancestors’ legacies alive inCheryl Day’s Treasury of Southern Baking (Artisan, $40). This stunning collection blends history with instructions for temptations such as blackberry sonker with milk dip, and country captain curry hand pies.

Vallery Lomas, the first Black winner of “The Great American Baking Show,” shares life lessons and recipes inspired by her Louisiana forebears and travels abroad in her debut cookbook, Life Is What You Bake It: Recipes, Stories, and Inspiration to Bake Your Way to the Top (Clarkson Potter, $29.99).

South Carolina chef Belinda Smith-Sullivan appeals to our region’s collective sweet tooth withSouthern Sugar (Gibbs Smith, $24.99), while Kentucky blogger Jenn Davis puts unique twists on familiar favorites (salty honey buttermilk pie, country ham fantails with red-eye gravy) inThe Southern Baking Cookbook: 60 Comforting Recipes Full of Down-South Flavor (Page Street, $22.99).

“The Cookie Bible” by Rose Levy Beranbaum (Mariner, $35).

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For a practical and comprehensive guide to everything from baking the perfect brownie to building a gingerbread house,The King Arthur Baking Company Essential Cookie Companion (Countryman, $40) has you covered. To ratchet those techniques up to pastry-pro level, Rose Levy Beranbaum of “The Cake Bible” fame comes through with her famously precise instructions for treats, both simple (bourbon balls) and involved (crown jewel macarons), in The Cookie Bible(Mariner, $35). And, if the mention of smoked butter chocolate chunks and blueberry muffin blondies get your creative juices flowing, check out recipe developer and food stylist Jesse Szewczyk’s Cookies: The New Classics (Clarkson Potter, $27.50).

“Baking for the Holidays: 50+ Treats for a Festive Season” by Sarah Kieffer (Chronicle, $24.95).

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Sarah Kieffer follows up last year’s critically acclaimed “100 Cookies” with Baking for the Holidays: 50+ Treats for a Festive Season (Chronicle, $24.99), with gorgeously presented, spirit-lifting options, such as coffee-cardamom monkey bread, frozen bonbons, red velvet crinkle cookies and modern fruit cakes. And, to transport you to a fairy-tale setting a world away, Anja Dunk mixes up a marzipan-filled stollen and frosted cinnamon stars in Advent: Festive German Bakes to Celebrate the Coming of Christmas (Quadrille, $35).

“The Cardamom Trail: Delicious Bakes Inspired by India” by Chetna Makan (Octopus Books, $29.99).

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While the baking traditions of France, Italy and Germany have been well-covered, exciting oven offerings come from places less traveled. Check out some of them in The Cardamom Trail: Delicious Bakes Inspired by Indiaby Chetna Makan (Octopus Books, $29.99); Mooncakes and Milk Bread: Sweet and Savory Recipes Inspired by Chinese Bakeries by Kristina Cho (Harper Horizon, $29.95); and The Nordic Baker: Plant-Based Bakes and Seasonal Stories From a Kitchen in Swedenby Sofia Nordgren (Quadrille, $29.99).


Aran Goyoaga, an award-winning Seattle-based fourth-generation baker from the Basque Country, channels her pastry heritage through her experiences with gluten intolerance in her popular blog, Cannelle et Vanille. Her second cookbook is Cannelle et Vanille Bakes Simple: A New Way to Bake Gluten-Free(Sasquatch, $35). Dietary issues aside, it’s hard not to be tempted by chocolate-tahini buckwheat marble cake, pistachio and rose water sandies, or pumpkin pine nut tart — all lusciously photographed, and many with step-by-step instructions.

“Bittman Bread: No-Knead Whole Grain Baking for Every Day” by Mark Bittman and Kerri Conan (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $35).

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The renowned food writer Mark Bittman and his longtime collaborator, Kerri Conan, have been up to their elbows in naturally fermented whole grain doughs for years. The widespread bread-baking obsessions triggered by COVID-19 lockdowns paved the way for the results of those experiments: Bittman Bread: No-Knead Whole Grain Baking for Every Day (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $35). While recipes for loaves, flatbreads and sweet stuff require some advance planning, their methods are designed to accommodate the busiest schedules.

If you’re serious about stepping up your pizza game, Dan Richer, chef-owner of the nationally acclaimed Razza Pizza Artigianale in Jersey City, New Jersey, and Italy-based food writer Katie Parla offer The Joy of Pizza: Everything You Need to Know (Voracious, $35). The name pretty much says it all.

“Nailed It! Baking Challenges for the Rest of Us” by the creators of “Nailed It!" with Heather Maclean (Abrams, $24.99).

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If the quest for Pinterest-worthy perfection keeps you out of the kitchen,Nailed It! Baking Challenges for the Rest of Us (Abrams, $24.99), by the creators of the cooking show of the same name, along with cookbook author Heather Maclean, will help you loosen up. Here, you’ll find over-the-top challenges — such as Polar Bear Donut, Cub Donut Hole and Alien Cupcakes — that require only a sense of humor to succeed.

Susan Puckett is a cookbook author and former food editor of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Follow her at susanpuckett.com.