The Best-Selling Cookbooks of 2014

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  • Ina Garten
    Ina Garten
    American author and television presenter
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Photo: Ina Garten/Facebook

All hail Ina Garten, whose latest title, Make It Ahead, was Amazon’s best-selling cookbook in 2014. But you know what? It came as no surprise to Amazon books editor Seira Wilson.

"Her cookbooks convey a warm, effortless elegance that allows home cooks to channel their own inner Ina," Wilson told us via email, adding that the Barefoot Contessa is "beloved." Perhaps that explains why Make It Ahead was September’s best-selling cookbook before it was even officially on sale in October. Only true star power can make pre-orders sing like that.

Despite Garten’s dominance, Wilson noted a few unexpected hits on Amazon’s list.

Yotam Ottolenghi’s last two books, Plenty and Plenty More, have been remarkably successful,” she said. ”So it’s a nice surprise to see his first book, Jerusalem"—just edging in at number 10—"two years after it released."

Wilson also had praise for this year’s “underdog,” Thug Kitchen's controversial cookbook (which was also the best-selling title in October and December). Although “the profane style can dissuade some from buying or gifting,” she noted that “as the numbers show, the winning recipes—and an irreverence that is fresh and eye-opening—appeal to a great number of cookbook purchasers.” 

Of course, not every great cookbook released this year made the cut. Wilson lamented that The Slanted Door, a collection of Vietnamese recipes from San Francisco restaurateur Charles Phan, didn’t sell better. (“Once you start thumbing through the pages, it’s hard not to fall in love,” she said.) Wilson was also struck that chef Gabrielle Hamilton’s cookbook debut, Prune, wasn’t higher up on the best-seller list.

And Wilson’s focus has already shifted to 2015. She predicts that April will be the hot month this year: There’s Benu (April 13), named for the three-star Michelin restaurant in San Francisco and written by its head chef Corey Lee; My Pantry (April 14), the new Alice Waters book; and The Whole30 (April 21), a cookbook based on the popular diet of the same name, by Melissa and Dallas Hartwig.

Here’s Amazon.com’s full list of the 10 best-selling cookbooks of 2014:

1. Make It Ahead: A Barefoot Contessa Cookbook by Ina Garten
2. Thug Kitchen: The Official Cookbook: Eat Like You Give a F*ck by Thug Kitchen
3. The Skinnytaste Cookbook: Light on Calories, Big on Flavor by Gina Homolka
4. Against All Grain: Delectable Paleo Recipes to Eat Well & Feel Great by Danielle Walker
5. Practical Paleo: A Customized Approach to Health and a Whole-Foods Lifestyle by Diane Sanfilippo
6. The Oh She Glows Cookbook: Over 100 Vegan Recipes to Glow from the Inside Out by Angela Liddon
7. 100 Days of Real Food: How We Did It, What We Learned, and 100 Easy, Wholesome Recipes Your Family Will Love by Lisa Leake
8. Superfood Smoothies: 100 Delicious, Energizing & Nutrient-dense Recipes by Julie Morris
9. Wheat Belly 30-Minute (Or Less!) Cookbook: 200 Quick and Simple Recipes to Lose the Wheat, Lose the Weight, and Find Your Path Back to Health by William Davis
10. Jerusalem: A Cookbook by Yotam Ottolenghi

Some of our other favorite cookbooks of 2014:

At Home in the Whole Food Kitchen, which made us want to rethink our approach to mealtime

The Pollan Family Table, which has recipes for everyday American home cooking using beautiful, organic raw ingredients

A Kitchen in France: A Year of Cooking in My Farmhouse, from Mimi Thorisson, the popular French blogger

Buy any cookbooks last year that you love? Tell us about them!