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Must-Read Cookbooks & Gardening Books


Looking for excellent, diverse books? Consider the titles on our Children's Core Collection Lists, curated by Denver Public Library staff to ensure that a variety of reading levels, topics, themes, genres and more have been included. This list includes great books for kids to explore on their own, as well as titles for families to enjoy together. More lists will be added as they become available. 

Check out our other must-read lists for kids

Cooking Class Global Feast! : 44 Recipes That Celebrate The World's Cultures
Cook, Deanna F., 1965- author.
"Food is a fun way to celebrate diversity, and in her new kids' cookbook, best-selling author Deanna F. Cook leads young chefs on a tasty tour of global cultures and cuisines. Kids gain practical kitchen skills through preparing breakfasts, drinks, snacks, dinners, and desserts from around the world"-- Provided by publisher.
American Girl Cupcakes
This beautifully photographed volume of inspired cupcake recipes, the latest title in the best-selling American Girl collection of cookbooks, begins with a range of trusted cake and frosting options, then offers easy ideas for the many creative ways in which cake and frosting can be combined, added to, and embellished according to preference and the occasion.-- Amazon
Bake It : 150 Favorite Recipes From Best-loved Dk Cookbooks.
Young chefs will find sweet and savory recipes for everything from pies and breads to muffins, cookies, and cakes.
The Big, Fun Kids Cookbook
"150+ recipes for young chefs"--Cover.
The Complete Cookbook For Young Chefs.
"For the first time ever, America's Test Kitchen is bringing their scientific know-how, rigorous testing, and hands-on learning to KIDS in the kitchen! Using kid-tested and approved recipes, America's Test Kitchen has created THE cookbook every kid chef needs on their shelf. Whether you're cooking for yourself, your friends, or your family, The Complete Cookbook for Young Chefs has delicious recipes that will wow!"--Publisher's description.
Cooking Step By Step.
Perfect for budding young chefs looking to cook with confidence, this book will help make sure all your meals hit the spot. Cooking Step by Step is packed with 50 mouthwatering recipes that are easy to make and tasty enough for the whole family to enjoy.
Let's Get Gardening
Learn to grow your own vegetables and herbs, attract awesome wildlife such as butterflies and bees, and be a green gardener with lots of recycling tips. Whether you've got a big vegetable patch or just a windowsill, you can grow all sorts of plants with this colorful RHS book. Packed full of easy-to-follow step-by-step activities, this book helps children learn about conservation, recycling and sustainability in simple, practical, and hands-on ways. They will build a mini nature reserve, turn old wellies into plant pots, grow fruit and vegetables that they can really eat, plant a bee-friendly space, create a ladybird sanctuary, and much more. Help nature with every activity and discover the joys of growing plants from seeds. So grab your potting mix and let's get gardening!
Look, I'm A Cook.
You were born with everything you need to be an awesome cook: an amazing brain and super senses. Get ready to touch, smell, see, hear and taste you way to fabulous food. Find out: how to make an exciting salad train, what makes the greenest guacamole, why bread is full of bubbles ... and much, much more ! Provides kid-friendly recipes for different dishes, including guacamole, chocolate pears, bruschetta, and rainbow ice.
My First Cookbook : Fun Recipes To Cook Together...with As Much Mixing, Rolling, Scrunching, And Squishing As Possible!
"Cooking is not only fun, it's a powerful learning tool. It's an amazing way to learn about the world. But even more important, cooking is one of the best ways to spend time together. In the kitchen, your family can leave screens (and worries) behind and enjoy making something delicious to share. What the young chef or the grown-up takes on will differ depending on age, ability, and interest. Don't be afraid to try new things or to make mistakes. The good news is that the results will be tasty no matter how you get there. All the recipes in this book are kid tested and kid approved. This means that thousands(!) of kids (and their grown-ups) across the country tested these recipes at home, giving us feedback to help make sure that everything we publish is as delicious and doable as possible. Happy cooking!"-- Provided by publisher.
Gardening With Emma : Grow And Have Fun : A Kid-to-kid Guide
Biggs, Emma (Emma Vivian), 2005- author.
Thirteen-year-old Emma Biggs is passionate about gardening and eager to share her passion with other kids! Gardening with Emma is a kid-to-kid guide to growing healthy food and raising the coolest, most awesome plants while making sure there's plenty of fun. With plants that tickle and make noise, tips for how to grow a flower stand garden, and suggestions for veggies from tiny to colossal, Emma offers a range of original, practical, and entertaining advice and inspiration. She provides lots of useful know-how about soil, sowing, and caring for a garden throughout the seasons, along with ways to make play spaces among the plants. Lively photography and Emma's own writing (with some help from her gardening dad, Steve) capture the authentic creativity of a kid who loves to be outdoors, digging in the dirt.
Plant, Sow, Make & Grow : Mud-tastic Activities For Budding Gardeners
Coombs, Esther, author.
Get little gardeners growing and learning with this low-stress approach to producing yummy fruit, veggie and bug friendly flowers. You'll find plenty of handy gardening information to get you started, tips about what wildlife you may see, raiding your recycling box to make some useful gardening accessories and other craft activities.
New Favorites For New Cooks : 50 Delicious Recipes For Kids To Make
Federman, Carolyn, author.
From a leader in the field of food education, this smart, fun, lavishly illustrated cookbook provides 50 kid-tested recipes that engage children's natural inclination for adventure and use fresh, seasonal ideas for breakfast, lunch, snacks, and sweets to teach basic cooking skills. With fresh ingredients and easy recipes, New Favorites for New Cooks, will turn any kid into a budding chef. Recipes such as Savory Scones with Fresh Herb Butter, Black Bean Taco Bar, Two-Minute Guacamole, Meatballs and Tomato Sauce, and Yogurt and Berry Compote Parfait engage every sense with bright colors, fresh flavors, and exciting textures, and showcase healthy, seasonal ingredients. Packed with information about kitchen science and history, and heavily illustrated (every recipe is photographed), this cookbook makes being in the kitchen fun for everyone.
Grow A Garden!
Frederick-Frost, Alexis, author, illustrator.
You can grow a garden -- and it's easier than you think! Will, Violet, and Basil must be the unluckiest students at the Garden Gnome Academy. They've been stuck with Mr. Butternut, the school's most unpopular (and unusual) teacher, Will and his friends have to learn about the soil and compost while their classmates get to study exotic plants and butterflies. Although things get a little messy (and stinky) in his class, Mr. Butternut does know a thing or two about growing delicious veggies. With the easy instructions inside this book, you can grow lettuce, carrots, tomatoes, peppers, and more. And you don't need a backyard to be a great gardener -- just a little bit of space and a lot of sunlight. Maker Comics: Grow a Garden! will walk you through each step, from seed to harvest.
Kitchen Science Lab For Kids : 52 Mouth-watering Recipes And The Everyday Science That Makes Them Taste Amazing
Heinecke, Liz Lee, author.
When you step into your kitchen to cook or bake, you put science to work. Physics and chemistry come into play each time you simmer, steam, bake, freeze, boil, puree, saute, or ferment food. Knowing something about the physics, biology, and chemistry of food will give you the basic tools to be the best chef you can be. Bodacious Bubble Tea, Flavorful Fruit Leather, Super Spring Rolls, Mouthwatering Meatballs...divided by course, each lab presents a step-by-step recipe for a delicious drink, snack, sauce, main dish, dessert, or decoration. The Science Behind the Food section included with each recipe will help you understand the science concepts and nutrition behind the ingredients. Have fun learning about: bacteria and the chemical process of fermentation by making your own pickled vegetables; emulsion as you create your own vinaigrette; how trapped water vapor causes a popover to inflate as you make your own; crystals by making your own ice cream. Mix and match the recipes to pair pasta with your favorite sauce, make ice cream to serve in homemade chocolate bowls, or whip up the perfect frosting for your cake. There are plenty of fun, edible decorations included for the art lovers in the crowd. Before long, you'll have the confidence to throw together a feast, bake and decorate show-worthy cakes, or use what you've learned to create your own recipes. For those with food allergies, all recipes are nut-free and other allergens are clearly labeled throughout. Let's get cooking--and learning!
Honest Pretzels : And 64 Other Amazing Recipes For Cooks Ages 8 & Up
Katzen, Mollie, 1950-
Provides step-by-step instructions for a variety of recipes, arranged in such categories as "Breakfast Specials," "Soups, Sandwiches & Salads for Lunch or Supper," and "Desserts and a Few Baked Things."
United Tastes Of America
Langholtz, Gabrielle, author.
"Cook around the country with this geographical collection of authentic recipes from each of the USA's 50 states, plus three territories, and the nation's capital"-- Provided by publisher.
One World Kids Cookbook : [easy, Healthy, And Affordable Family Meals]
Mendez, Sean.
This healthy eating cookbook is aimed at encouraging young people to think about what they eat through emphasizing the importance of a balanced diet. It contains kitchen tips and suggests vegetarian substitutes to the meat recipes. One World Kids Cookbook aims to instill a passion for good, wholesome, healthy food as well as a passion for life. Includes fabulous dishes from around the world, from jollof rice to fajitas.
Little Kitchen Of Horrors : Hideously Delicious Recipes That Disgust And Delight
Vega, Ali, author.
Step-by-step instructions and colorful photos make these recipes as fun and easy as they are frightful.
Cooking On A Stick : Campfire Recipes For Kids
White, Linda, 1948-
Describes the basic procedures and equipment needed in preparing and cooking simple foods in an outdoor setting.

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