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Get culinary inspiration from must-have local cookbooks

We compiled 10 local cookbooks for you to dig into, find your next recipe fixation, and learn more about NC’s impressive foodie scene.


Learn to make Poole’s delectable homegrown tomato pie from home.

Photo by Johnny Autry

We recently came across The Raleigh Cookbook from 1907, and while we love digging through Raleigh’s past, we’ve been relishing cookbooks from current local chefs, restaurateurs, and community members.

These 10 local cookbooks will make you want to take more whisks in the kitchen.

Cooking in the Moment: A Year of Seasonal Recipes” by Andrea Reusing | Experiment with seasonal flavors with recipes by this James Beard Award winner and talented restaurateur who established Lantern in Chapel Hill.

Homes in the Hometowns” from Got to Be NC | This down-home recipe handbook features dishes from small NC towns submitted by farmers, agribusiness owners, and staff from the NC Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services.

Latinísimo” by Sandra Gutierrez | This book celebrates Latin American home cooking, and believe us, you’ll want to dig into dishes by this Cary-based food writer like Arepas Clásicas and Pastel de Tres Leches.

Pecan crusted salmon over a bed of leeks on a white plate.

Try making pecan crusted salmon from “Meals She Eats.”

Courtesy of Meals She Eats

Meals She Eats” by Tom and Rachael Sullivan | This New York Times best-selling lifestyle book includes over 25 recipes to help take control of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), one of the leading causes of female infertility.

On the Square: A Community That Made A Restaurant” by Inez and Stephen Ribustello | From the intimate bistro in Tarboro, NC comes this cookbook featuring crowdpleasers from “On the Square” and personal anecdotes from the restaurant owners experience in the industry.

Poole’s” by Ashley Christensen and “It’s Always Freezer Season” by Christensen + Kaitlyn Goalen | Read stories and whip up comfort foods as seen in Christensen’s iconic Poole’s Diner, or take your pick from 100 make-ahead recipes for easy dinners.

Saltbox Seafood Joint Cookbook” by Ricky Moore | Steering the ship at Saltbox Seafood Joint in Durham, Moore won the James Beard Award for Best Chef: Southeast in 2022 and dives into 60 coastal recipes in his cookbook.

A propped-up cookbook by Chef Ricky Moore.

Ricky Moore’s cookbook was found in the wild in Manteo, NC.

Photo by RALtoday

This Will Make It Taste Good” + “Deep Run Roots” by Vivian Howard | Make simple food exciting and explore recipes with this award-winning author, TV personality, and chef. Pro tip: Watch this Southern chef work her magic on “A Chef’s Life” on PBS.

TSDOI Volume 2: Italians Americans in the Kitchen” by Triangle Sons & Daughters of Italy | Dig into this collection of over 100 family recipes passed down from one Italian-American generation to the
next — plus, proceeds enable the group to help support individuals and families in crisis, people with disabilities + autism, USO families, scholarships, and Italian culture preservation.

Whole Hog BBQ: The Gospel of Carolina Barbecue” by Sam Jones | Featuring recipes from Skylight Inn and Sam Jones BBQ, become your own pitmaster and read stories from Jones’ barbecue lineage in this handbook featuring 20 family recipes.

PS: Don’t miss our recipe box to make other delicious dishes from local chefs, bartenders, and readers.

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