The secret it out — Portland is a foodie’s paradise. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that my little apartment is adorned with the best cookbooks Portland has to offer.
But who can blame me? It’s hard to eat mediocre meals when you have such great options at your fingertips!
Some of the restaurants in Portland are impossible to forget — so if a chef is willing to spill the beans, I’m all ears.
Today, I will share my personal list of the best Portland cookbooks. I own all these cookbooks and have tried these recipes myself. Read on to learn everything you need to know.
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The Best Portland Cookbooks
#1. Six Seasons: A New Way With Vegetables
I stumbled upon Six Seasons by accident while aimlessly wandering through Powell’s Books. They had the book on display and guests were welcome to peruse the pages for inspiration.
And holy cow, I couldn’t get this book out of my mind for weeks afterwards.
In fact, I went back to Powell’s on three different occasions simply to look through the vibrant photos. After my third visit, I knew I had to get a copy for my home.
I’ve yet to be disappointed with any of the vegetable-forward recipes.
I made the roasted mushroom dish and my husband still talks about it to this day. The flavors and simplicity of the dishes in this award-winning cookbook are sure to inspire and excite even the most amateur home chef (*raises hand).
If you can only get one Portland cookbook at this time, make it this one. You will not regret it. I honestly don’t know what I did without it!
If you’d like to pick up a copy of Six Seasons for your home, click here.
Six Seasons was named Best Cookbook of the Year by the Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic, Bon Appétit, Food Network Magazine, Every Day with Rachael Ray, USA Today, Seattle Times, Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, Library Journal, Eater, and more
#2. Hello! My Name is Tasty
Tasty N Alder is where my husband and I had our first date. So of course I have a soft spot for the delectable fare shared in Hello! My Name is Tasty.
When you’re trying hard to impress, it’s hard to beat the comforting food from Tasty N Alder.
Without fail, we take out of town guests to the various Tasty restaurants throughout Portland. More often than not, our guests leave with this cookbook in hand – the meals speak for themselves.
Stand out dishes include the shakshuka and lemon ricotta pancakes.
UPDATE: Tasty restaurants have since closed, a huge loss for Portland. Forever grateful that the recipes live on in this incredible cookbook.
If you’d like to pick up a copy of Hello! My Name is Tasty, click here.
#3. Le Pigeon: Cooking at the Dirty Bird
I celebrated my birthday with a fancy-pants dinner at Le Pigeon this year and will probably never be the same (RIP old me).
The tasting meal at Le Pigeon is easily the best meal I’ve had in Portland (maybe even my entire life). I’m still dreaming about the dessert.
Le Pigeon is the epitome of traditional French cuisine and this cookbook is best experienced by those that truly love cooking — like, spending hours preparing a meal.
Makes sense, considering that event the walls of this cozy Portland restaurant seem to hold years of experience – the aroma is intoxicating! Shortly after my visit, I frantically purchased the cookbook online.
The french meals in this cookbook have tested my (limited) culinary abilities, but goodness – they’re worth every second in the kitchen. This is an essential Portland cookbook for any serious home chef.
If you’d like to pick up a copy of the Le Pigeon cookbook, click here.
#4. Portland Farmers Market Cookbook
I recently learned that the Portland Farmers Market was rated the best farmers market in America in 2014. So it was only fitting that I picked up a copy of this cookbook.
This beautiful cookbook shares 100 delicious recipes that cover every meal of the day. But what I love most about the Portland Farmers Market Cookbook is the sustainable lifestyle it promotes.
It feels so European to me — eat local, eat seasonal, eat well. Sounds like a no-brainer, right?
And I have to say, if I ever move out of Portland, I’d be homesick for the incredible farmers markets within a week.
If you’d like to pick up a copy of the Portland Farmers Market Cookbook, click here.
#5. Portland Cooks
This Portland cookbook is new on the scene, but it quickly became an instant classic in our home. Portland Cooks combines recipes from the best restaurants Portland.
Everything from the best chocolate chip cookies to drool-worthy drinks, making it a great cookbook for those that like variety.
It doesn’t focus on any one cuisine, but rather combines the best of everything. I think it’d be really fun to host a potluck using this book where every guest makes a meal. The possibilities are endless!
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If you’d like to pick up a copy of Portland Cooks, click here.
#6. Taste & Technique: Recipes to Elevate Your Home Cooking
The owner of Beast (arguably one of the best restaurants in Portland) finally released a phenomenal cookbook in which she shares her self-taught knowledge of proper french cooking techniques.
As someone that cooks for substance alone (apologies to my poor husband), this book changed the way I approach cooking. I am slowly starting to understand the art of cooking in ways that have never occurred to me.
Since the author is self taught, she has a way of explaining things in a sincere and approachable way, which makes me excited to give it a try. The technique is technical, but the explanation is simple.
I can’t get enough of Taste & Technique and find myself reaching for it 2-3 time a week!
If you’d like to pick up a copy of Taste & Technique, click here.
#7. Wine Food: New Adventures in Drinking and Cooking
Is there any better way to spend an evening with girlfriends than pairing fresh caprese salad with a proper bottle of wine?
Dana Frank and Andrea Sloecker created the cookbook I never knew I needed. But now that I own it, I’m constantly on the hunt for new-to-me wines.
Seriously, you’ll find me in the wine section of Whole Foods any given night desperately looking for blends I didn’t know existed.
It’s an incredible book and adds a new element to all of my meals. The wine paring is way more fun that I expected!
I plan to rely on this book more in the summer months when we start re-visiting our 10 favorite wineries in Hood River.
Best Portland cookbooks
If you’d like to pick up a copy of Wine Food, click here.
#8. Pok Pok Cookbook
Ah, what can I saw about Pok Pok that hasn’t been said before? This is the one restaurant every out-of-town guest feels compelled to visit during their time in Portland.
And yes, the famous fish-sauce wings live up to the hype!
In this cookbook, the chef of Pok Pok shares 50 of his most famed recipes. But what I like most about the book is the vibrant story telling that takes you directly to the rich and colorful streets of Thailand.
It’s both a cookbook and a travel journal. And since COVID is a wet blanket, this book accounts for 90% of the travel I’ve been doing lately.
UPDATE: Pok Pok has permanently closed.
If you’d like to pick up a copy of Pok Pok, click here.
#9. Kachka: A Return to Russian Cooking
My mom gifted this cookbook to my husband and I for Christmas. Perhaps a gentle nudge to cook traditional Russian cuisine at home? Yeah, I’m laughing too.
I grew up on the meals beautifully displayed in this cookbook. To me if feels like a warm reminder of my childhood home.
And yes, I can attest that the meals are 100% authentic. Plus, the author’s stories enrich the experience.
Think colorful photos, delicious Russian fare and too many interesting stories to count.
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If you’d like to pick up a copy of Kachka, click here.
#10. Toro Bravo: Stories. Recipes. No Bull.
As a local Portlander, I’ve had my fair share of romantic dates at Toro Bravo. The bacon wrapped dates are heavenly — dates during a date, need I say more? *Chef’s kiss.
This cookbook feels like a personal diary of sorts, as the author shares stories from his intimate childhood memories to transformative life experiences – like traveling to Spain.
Overview: At the heart of Portland’s red-hot food scene is Toro Bravo, a Spanish-inspired restaurant whose small plates have attracted a fiercely loyal fan base. But to call Toro Bravo a Spanish restaurant doesn’t begin to tell the whole story. For chef John Gorham, each dish reflects a time, a place, a moment. For Gorham, food is more than mere sustenance.
If you’d like to pick up a copy of Toro Bravo, click here.
Best Cookbooks from Portland (Post Summary)
In sum, the BEST Portland cookbooks are:
- Six Seasons
- Hello! My Name is Tasty
- Le Pigeon
- Portland Farmers Market Cookbook
- Portland Cooks
- Taste & Technique
- Wine Food
- Pok Pok
- Toro Bravo
Love Portland? Here’s a few articles you may find interesting
- 20 HONEST Pros & Cons of Living in Portland
- 25+ EPIC Things to Do in Portland (+4 Tourist Traps to Avoid)
- 12 Stunning Parks in Portland, Oregon
- 10 Epic Portland Viewpoints to Check Off Your List
- 10 Adventurous Day Trips from Portland
- 30 Weird, Free & Cheap Things to Do in Portland
- Let’s Talk: Portland, Oregon Vs. Portland, Maine
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And there you have it, these are the best Portland cookbooks based on my own personal experience with these restaurants and the recipes shared in these books. I am sure you will be entertained for weeks to come!
What do you think?