Cookbooks that make great wedding gifts
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It's Wedding Season, and These Cookbooks Are Thoughtful Gifts Newlyweds Will Actually Use

You just may score an invite to their very first dinner party.
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As we slide into wedding season, here's a tip: Brass candlesticks may be forever, but a good cookbook will actually get used. Choosing a wedding present is often one of the most difficult parts about being a guest (nabbing the perfectly-frosted corner slice of cake is a close competitor). If the couple-to-be hasn't shared a registry, or if you just want to give a gift that's a little more personal, a cookbook is a clever idea that will truly be appreciated for years to come.

While almost any cookbook can work as a wedding gift, the best cookbooks for newlyweds are a clever mix of actually-doable recipes and fun "tackle it together" culinary projects. And like all good cookbooks, these should contain teachable moments and key takeaways that will give the happy couple kitchen confidence, as well as help get dinner on the table.

My own sister's nuptials are fast approaching, so I did an Amazon deep dive to find cookbooks worthy of wedding presents. Some are from celebrity chefs and some from grassroots cooking instructors. Others feature leveled-up recipes or aim to teach kitchen beginners. But all are special enough to give as a gift. Pair it with a set of quality cookware or two beautiful new aprons, and you just may score an invite to their very first dinner party.

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The Newlywed Cookbook

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Penned by a Food Network personality, this is a highly giftable hardcover cookbook that just feels special. (Perhaps the lovely photography by Sara Remington has something to do with it.) In addition to 130 original recipes, Copeland includes practical tips for creating a functional kitchen—like how to stock a pantry. It's garnered almost 350 five-star ratings, many with glowing reviews, like this one from someone who recently rediscovered it after a move: "Every time I open this cookbook I get a warm sense of nostalgia. It reminds me of how excited I was to try a new recipe and cook with my husband in our first home."

  • Full title: The Newlywed Cookbook: Fresh Ideas and Modern Recipes for Cooking With and for Each Other
  • Author: Sarah Copeland
  • Ebook Available: Yes
  • Pages: 304
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5-Ingredient Cooking for Two

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Traditional cookbooks may deliver big on flavor and wow-factor, but their recipes are often written for four to six servings. For those whose families are just a tidy two, a couples-specific cookbook is a game changer. This highly popular title has over 1,300 perfect ratings, with praises like "Required Reading!" and "Even the laziest cook will use this!" Each recipe is labeled with helpful descriptors, like "30 minutes or less," and "Feeling fancy." It's best-suited for new cooks, as one reviewer noted that their boyfriend's "gallant" kitchen attempts were improved greatly after receiving this book. 

  • Full title: 5-Ingredient Cooking for Two: 100+ Recipes Portioned for Pairs
  • Author: Robin Donovan
  • Ebook Available: Yes
  • Pages: 188
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The Date Night Cookbook

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Speaking of feeling fancy, this is a lovely option that encourages a "forever honeymoon" state of mind for couples (it's also a fun option for anniversaries and Valentine's Day gifts!). The Date Night Cookbook is a decidedly cheeky romp that makes efficient use of booze, and includes themed recipes like "Under-the-Covers Pancakes." One five-star reviewer noted that there's even a place for the gift-giver to write a thoughtful message for the couple.

  • Full title: The Date Night Cookbook: Romantic Recipes & Easy Ideas to Inspire from Dawn till Dusk
  • Author: Rebecca Warbis
  • Ebook Available: Yes
  • Pages: 128
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Martha Stewart's Newlywed Kitchen

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Classic, elegant, and aspirational: This hardcover cookbook from the lifestyle expert who needs no introduction is a no-brainer gift idea. Satisfied owners of this title praise it for its approachable recipes (no tricky-to-find ingredients needed) and its chic aesthetic (it's so pretty, it can double as kitchen decor). One couple even used it as a guestbook at their wedding, asking guests to sign next to a recipe of their choosing. 

  • Full title: Martha Stewart's Newlywed Kitchen: Recipes for Weeknight Dinners and Easy, Casual Gatherings
  • Author: Martha Stewart Living editors
  • Ebook Available: Yes
  • Pages: 304
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One Pan, Two Plates

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After the excitement of a wedding, married life relaxes into comforting routines. While it's unlikely newlyweds will find joy and togetherness on laundry night, the simple chore of cooking dinner can definitely be improved. The title of this book says it all: It's full of no-fuss, totally-doable recipes scaled perfectly for a couple. With around 650 five-star ratings, this is a winner that inspires devotees (one cook even purchased a copy after discovering it in the library).

  • Full title: One Pan, Two Plates: More Than 70 Complete Weeknight Meals for Two
  • Author: Carla Snyder
  • Ebook Available: Yes
  • Pages: 208
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Newlywed Entertaining

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When it's the newlywed couple's turn to host a holiday dinner—or even just a Sunday Supper—this helpful guide from Williams Sonoma is just the ticket. Full of stunning full-page photos and occasion-specific advice, Newlywed Entertaining covers everything from how to turn a barbecue into a soiree to the art of the cocktail party. There's an entire section covering artisanal cocktails, which would pair nicely with an elegant set of bar tools.  

  • Full title: Newlywed Entertaining: Recipes for Celebrating with Friends & Family
  • Author: Williams Sonoma
  • Ebook Available: No
  • Pages: 256
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The Complete Cooking for Two Cookbook

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Studious cooks will appreciate this tome from America's Test Kitchen. With 650 recipes, newlyweds will be covered for just about any occasion. It's hugely popular with real couples, who've given it over 6,200 5-star ratings. Every recipe was created and thoroughly tested for scale, which makes it truly useful not just for couples, but for anyone looking to cook in more manageable portions. This is a serious book that's accessible to novices, but not too elementary for polished home cooks.

  • Full title: The Complete Cooking for Two Cookbook: 650 Recipes for Everything You'll Ever Want to Make
  • Author: America's Test Kitchen editors
  • Ebook Available: Yes
  • Pages: 440
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The Nimble Cook

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Although not a couples-specific book, this is a wonderful option for curious cooks and those looking to level up on their skills. Written in a gentle, encouraging teacher's voice, The Nimble Cook is full of ingredients-first recipes that teach readers to think with the seasons and cook with confidence. Couples who appreciate farm-to-table dining will surely like this CSA-friendly book. Welsh is also the owner of Purple Kale Kitchenworks, an amateur-friendly school in New York City—should the newlyweds ever need a fun new date night idea.

  • Full title: The Nimble Cook: New Strategies for Great Meals That Make the Most of Your Ingredients
  • Author: Ronna Welsh
  • Ebook Available: Yes
  • Pages: 400