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Baking isn't just about filling your stomach. It's a craft, a skill, and a popular hobby for many. It enables us to build a connection with food, just like cooking, but where cooking is an art, baking is a science. The idea of baking as a pastime definitely has a romantic ring to it, but if you don't know what you're doing, your cakes will likely fall flat, your cookies will burn, and your bread will remain gooey.
But, fear not! Whether you want to try baking your own crusty loves, or you're more into cakes, cookies, and scones, all a beginner needs is a few excellent cookbooks up their sleeve, and no one will ever know that you're a newbie! Here are our top 5 best baking books for new bakers - covering everything from savory pies to sweet treats, and best of all, each book comes in a spiral format which is perfect for laying flat while baking away!
Written by one of the UK's most beloved chefs, Nadiya Bakes is an excellent cookbook for both new bakers and those with a bit more experience. As the winner of one of the most popular UK baking shows, "The Great British Bakeoff", author of multiple cookbooks, and star of her own Netflix series, she is definitely a chef to take note of.
In true Nadiya fashion, the recipes resemble home-baked classics such as bread and butter pudding, but all with her own unique twist thrown into the mix, making them both nostalgic and brand new. The book contains over 100 recipes, many of which are ambitious at first glance, but with her simple tricks and tips woven throughout and the conversational tone of instructions, they become easily approachable to any level of baker.
If you're a lover of the humble pie, we can't recommend a cookbook as much as this one - an entire book dedicated to these glorious pastry-filled delicacies. More than another tomb of recipes, The Book on Pie is a handbook written by the ultimate pie expert detailing everything you need to know to become an expert yourself.
Starting out with the basics, the book includes key information on equipment, ingredients, storing, and preserving. It also offers extensive guidance, followed by a detailed and full recipe section, including everything from sweet pies filled with custards, creams, and fruits to savory fillings such as caramel pork pies.
When most people think of baking, the first thing that usually pops to mind is cakes, and if this is a skill you're looking to hone, you can't find much better than Zoe Bakes Cakes. Whether you want to learn the technicalities of baking a beautifully decorated cake for a special occasion, or you want to find out how to whip up a classic homely pound cake, this book has everything you need.
This book provides a great foundation for new bakers, with a detailed overview of techniques to create the perfect bake as well as a tonne of interesting information on food science. All in all, this is a very accessible, approachable book complete with easy steps and photo guides, so you know precisely what your creations should look like.
If you've got a couple of little ones at home that really fancy a go with the whisk, you couldn't be in better hands than with the Complete Baking Book for Young Chefs. This cookbook is peppered with nuggets of trivia and reviews from the kid testers themselves, making it a captivating read and suitable for children of any age.
The book includes a vast range of over 100 recipes, such as empanadas and pizzas, and all forms of dough, with each one providing detailed instructions, making it super easy to follow. There's also a handy section at the front covering all the basics any beginner needs to know, such as how to roll out dough and melt butter.
Bread baking has become a hugely popular pastime, especially due to many people being forced to stay at home. There really is nothing better than a house filled with the comforting scent of a freshly baked loaf. So if you want to give home-baked bread a go, Bread Baking for Beginners will definitely set you on the right path.
A complete guide for the absolute beginner that knows nothing about baking bread, this book guides you through everything you need to know to become a true artisanal baker. You'll find recipes of all kinds, from plain loaves to flavored, sweet to savory, and everything from brioche to sourdough. The methods are simple, easy to follow, and complete with photographs and step-by-step instructions.
So, if you fancy trying your hand at a fluffy brioche roll, an apple and blackberry pie, or a light as air victoria sponge, try out one of these Spiral Baking Cookbooks. If you haven't quite found what you're looking for in this list, we've got plenty more where that came from in our Baking section. Happy baking!