Creating My Third Cookbook in Pittsburgh

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It’s so close I can almost taste it. Right now, I’m sitting on the couch at the home of Bill and Hayley of Primal Palate finally finishing up my cookbook that I have been working on since September. I’ve made over 100 recipes, I think it’s around 120 recipes but I’m not totally sure yet. This will be my fourth and final trip out to Pittsburgh to finish up the photography that Bill and Hayley have been doing for my book. I come out to Pittsburgh, live with them for 7-10 days, I cook 4-6 recipes per day, they take the pictures for every recipe, we sing songs and watch movies. Boom. That’s my cookbook life. Actually, we mostly listen to music while doing dishes because THERE ARE SO MANY DAMN DISHES. But I guess that’s a good problem to have.

This trip has been absolutely awesome. My last trip to Pittsburgh was previously planned for January but then I got bronchitis and was coughing until I threw up, so I decided to hold off a couple months before coming back out and finishing the book up. Such a good idea. If you don’t know much about Pittsburgh, please understand that it is incredibly gloomy in the winter. Which sucks for food photography. But right now it’s 60 degrees, sunny and extremely springy. The photography is looking beautiful and these last few days are going to make the cookbook officially amazing. I know it seems like I’m tooting my own horn or something, but I have to. I’ve never been so excited for something. Like, ever. I’m so proud of the hard work I put into it, the positive attitude I had along the way, and the creativity I put into every recipe. I’ve really tried to make a cookbook that YOU will be proud to own. But enough about the cookbook, let’s talk about the recipes themselves.

I’ve shared some sneak peeks on instagram of some of the recipes I’ve made this fourth trip.

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Pictured (in simple terms): Roasted Radishes, Tomato Salad, Green Beans, Winter Squash Salad, Caramel, Chocolate Bark

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Pictured (in simple terms): Chili, Loaded Portobello Mushrooms, Scallops, Cream of Mushroom Soup

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Pictured (in simple terms): Maple Bacon Pork Loin, Pulled Pork Benedict, Pulled Pork Salad, Tomatillo Ranch and Whipped Cream

Today is a little different though. After getting some feedback from my publisher that my cookbook cover didn’t really fit the vibe of my cookbook (my cookbook is very sarcastic, has humor, and you know…don’t take no sh*t…whatever that means) so we decided a different cookbook cover was the way to go. Which blows because I bought this dress specifically for the cover and it showed up extra short in the crotch, meaning I will not be wearing anywhere else. Here’s what the first cover looked like:

Juli Bauers Paleo Cookbook Cover

But alas, I understand why the photo doesn’t make sense for my normal recipe banter. I’ve also had to change how I word some thing in my book. Not everyone thinks feces jokes are hilarious. I for one, do. But my editor was a bit grossed out by my feces comment in a cookbook. Understandable. It’s not that she doesn’t understand humor, it’s that she’s not disgusting. I kind of am. Another reason why this cookbook cover doesn’t fit my book. Maybe, when I’m a professional French cook who has traveled the world and knows everything about fine dining, and uses words like mozzarella where I roll my r’s like Giada…then I can reuse the cover of this cookbook. Until then, I must change the cover and remove my feces joke. Such a shame.

Today I’ll be frosting cupcakes, making chicken wings and scooping ice cream for the cover shots and inside book shots. Then tomorrow I’ll be making some Cuban and Venezuelan food (my damn plantains won’t ripen, THE BASTARDS!!!) then I’ll be heading home to purchase a house. Eeeeeeeek. Big week right here!

But real quick, before you go, I need to ask you a question! What do you like to see in your cookbooks? Is there something that stands out and keeps you going back to that specific cookbook? I want to make sure that this cookbook fits everyones needs as best as possible, so while I still have time to add in things and change things up, tell me what you want…what you really really want! And then name that song!

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Oh, Hi! I’m Juli.

I’m a food hoarder. And a really bad dancer. If you don’t know me well, you will probably not understand my humor. Therefore, I apologize ahead of time. Thanks for listening to my ramblings of my ever-changing life and trusting my kitchen mishaps. Your trust in me is appreciated.


84 thoughts on “Creating My Third Cookbook in Pittsburgh”

  1. Rose Wendinger

    Cookbooks that have great pictures are the only ones that I get. Having a visual of how amazing the food “should” look like is a major seller!! Sounds like you have a some greats pics going into this book and your a great writer so I know your books will go over great!! I just bought my first house in rural MN… as a single 20 something girl… I can assure you that “The Process” SUCKS BUTT!! As soon as you sign ALLLL those papers at the closing though,…. you will feel 300% better and totally forget about all the stress, anxiety, and tears you dealt with.

  2. I really loved the photo recipe index in your last cookbook. Makes it super easy to find what I’m looking for-keep that for this cookbook!

  3. I always like when the author gives a list of appliances necessary for a recipe – I’m so guilty of only reading the ingredient list and then starting on the recipe only to find out at step #4 it requires a piece of equipment that I don’t own yet (hopefully we’ll fix that problem with the wedding registry!) … you’d think I’d learn my lesson…

    Also – Spice Girls “Wannabe”

  4. Nomnom paleo got it right. Her step by step pics are helpful as well as any needed explanations. But what keeps me cooking out of hers is the the obvious recipe development that makes everything turn out exactly like her pictures every damn time and taste phenom.

  5. Pictures for every recipe! The internet and food blog world have spoiled me, now I expect to see at least one pretty picture for everything I set out to cook. If there’s no image, I won’t be drawn to the page. It sucks to be part of the millennial generation, amiright??

  6. I agree with the cover pic change plan! I mean, it’s a shame because that dress is so pretty, but it looks more rich housewife proper and less….whatever Paleomg is. 🙂 I hope you can find a way to repurpose the dress somehow. Maybe just wear it underneath one of your gorgeous full skirts. As for what I look for in a cookbook, it’s really just the proportion of recipes that sound and look delicious to me. I don’t use the ones much where I have to flip through it like “um, well…I guess that sounds good?” I mean, that’s basically just personal preference and largely based on the fact that I’m an embarrassingly picky eater, but you asked. 🙂

  7. A big thing for me, which I first noticed in the Against All Grain cookbook, is listing the ingredients in the order you will use them. I love that.

    I’m sure your publisher has already done this – The look and feel of the primal palate/against all grain books looks similar to your book, so I’m guessing you have the same publisher?

    I prefer for books to be sorted by meal rather than ingredient. But sometimes I see the necessity to sort dinners by type of meat.

    I also think something that appeals to readers is to associate recipes with things they know. That may not be as applicable to your book. But for example: “Creamy Dill Dressing” = “Ranch Dressing”. But let’s be honest, I’ll buy anything that has something doused with ranch dressing in it. haha (Texan)

    I agree with your publisher on the cover now that you explained the content. At first I was like, what, no! Can’t wait to see what outfit you come up with!

    In general, I think its good to have a balance of about 70% 20-30 min recipes and 30% crock pot, long/involved recipes.

    As a full-time working gal who crossfits after work, I can’t spend more than 20-30 min preparing a meal. I’ve made your beef broccoli about 1000 times since its so fast and serves easily over rice.

    I also really like (and find that most paleo cookbooks lack) ideas for takeaway snacks. Most of the “snacks” are something I’d need a full kitchen to prepare and eat right away (cucumber bites etc).

    I hope this is helpful, I’m rambling at this point!!!!! Best of luck Juli

  8. Looks great, I’m looking forward to check it out. One thing that drives me crazy when cookbooks DON’T have it is a table of contents at the beginning – I want to browse all the recipes in one place. I also appreciate when the prep time is included (especially if it’s realistic and even better if it’s included in the TOC – how amazing (and easy) that would be!).

  9. First off… Wannabe! Secondly, I can’t want for your new cookbook. I kind of agree that the cover didn’t match the normal blog satire that I am used to reading. Excited to see what you come up with! As for the cookbook, I love it when cookbooks are well organized and easy to find recipes. Some cookbooks lack a table of contents that list all of the recipes and I think this is a huge miss. I don’t want to spend 15 minutes flipping through the book to find a recipe every time… I get easily distracted and then forget what I was looking for in the first place.

  10. I like it when the author tells me how long the (dressings and marinades in particular) item will keep in the fridge, and if it can be frozen. I’m the only one who eats this way in my household, which means sometimes there are lots of leftovers that I can’t stomach to eat over and over again.

  11. Spice Girls…. wow! That’s waaaaay back.

    I like recipes that are grouped together as if they could form a complete meal. So like, a salad, a side, a main dish then a dessert on sequential pages all with the same theme (say mexican). Then another set all on subsequent pages that would complement each other with a different theme. That way I don’t have to think too hard about how to take all these different recipes and form a meal out of them and figure out what goes together. It’s all grouped together for me.

  12. I agree completely about the book cover. The original one is beautiful, but it does not seem “you” – can’t wait to see the new one!

  13. I’m dying over “feces comment in a cookbook” 🙂 I will probably buy any cookbook you put out just because it’s yours, and I love your personality AND your recipes. That sucks about the dress, but I do think another cover would be better for the Paleomg image we all love!

  14. I love reading cookbooks, and do so often. Some of my favorite parts of cookbooks are the blurbs before each recipe. I want to hear why you love this, additions you sometimes add in, why this recipe was created, etc. It adds context to make me love the recipe as much as you do!

    1. I can agree with this comment! I bought a paleo italian cookbook just because of the story about the authors trip across Italy and their inspiration for the recipes.

    2. Could not agree more! One of my favorite cookbooks has a blurb on every page saying how it was inspired and/or how you can mix the recipe up with a couple different ingredients. Really looking forward to this cookbook!!

  15. I like when I’m told which side best pairs with the main, because I don’t want to think about it! (ie Skinnytaste cookbook). I also like to see a lot of comfort foods turned healthier, and doesn’t use a lot of obsure, hard to find ingredients. Look forward to it!

  16. My favorite thing I’ve ever seen done in a cookbook is Melissa Joulwan’s “You know how you could do that?” section. I agree about the cover photos too. You look gorgeous in this one but I don’t think it captures your essence perfectly 🙂

    1. My loves for cookbooks:

      1.) pictures
      2.) weights, especially for flours (grams, ounces, etc.)
      3.) I LOVE Melissa Joulwan’ts cookbook, use it more than Practical Paleo and Nom Nom, because she lists items to eat with the main recipe as well as other ideas to make the main recipe, she also has a spot for notes! Love the note area, use it all the time.
      4.) HATE, HATE, HATE it when a recipe says 1 “small” onion, or 1 “large” carrot, my small, medium or large are always going to be different than the next person’s…use some type of measurement please 🙂

      p.s. can’t wait for the book…all I can think about right now is Maple Bacon Pork Loin and I just got done eating a breakfast of eggs and “Fluffy Blueberry Pancakes” 🙂

  17. So excited about your book! I really loved how with the last one you had a few pages you could cut out (for example the paleo checklist & food storage tips- I have them hanging in my cupboard for a quick reference). It’d be great if you included maybe just some additional tips or kitchen hacks! Either way I’m buying the book 🙂

  18. I LOVED the recipe index in The Paleo Kitchen. I would love suggestions for what recipes to pair together. I am a good cook, but I’m not so good at putting together a whole meal. Or suggestions of what to do with leftovers?

    I am so excited for this cookbook!

  19. I prefer cookbooks with pictures of every recipe. It seems like a “no duh” but i got a new book a couple weeks ago that doesn’t include a shot of every recipe. I feel better about what I make when the product looks like the picture. One reason I enjoy TPK!
    In other news, I made your Char Siu with Char Siu Fried Rice yesterday and it is AWESOME! Literally, the BEST PORK I’ve ever had. So thank you for sharing your ideas and talent with the rest of us. 🙂

    1. totally agree with the pictures of all the recipes. You would think that would be a given, but I also got a cookbook recently and it sadly didn’t have that. I usually get super excited and read them cover to cover when I get them, but this once just didn’t capture my attention like that because the lack of pictures. Can’t wait to get this book!

  20. I use the books that have recipes that work. Sometimes it seems like the writer hasn’t ever attempted to follow their own instructions. I like seeing photos of the process, first it looks like this, then it looks like this, especially when consistency is important. I wouldn’t worry about style, if you try pleasing everyone else, you won’t get what you want. Always be yourself, unless you can be a pirate, then always be a pirate. Looking forward to your new book Julie.

  21. Agree on the picture recipe index from The Paleo Kitchen! (Which is a great book, by the way.) I also think the information pages for storing produce, etc. are very helpful and the listings of what season is best for which produce.

  22. Welcome to adulthood!! Getting married, buying houses….next thing you know you’ll be 35 with two kids running around! haha! But seriously, how do you not have on a leather jacket for your cover pic?!?! A leather jacket, booties and gorgeous jewelry is quintessential Juli! (Gorgeous original pic, but I think the fake eyelashes were a bit much. I know, I know, they’re all the rage.)

    I agree with the recipe index at the end with pics of the recipes like your last book. I love, love, love a good ingredient index too for when I’m trying to use up that enormous bag of broccoli from Costco. I think meal suggestions are good too like this side dish would go well with this entree and if you really put some thought into it…like while this entree cooks for 45 min…you can whip up this side and have them done at the same time! Now that would be a godsend for us working moms! Oh and I think Instyle magazine used to do this…they included a page with those sticky post it tags so you could remove one and tag pages…well I could tag my favorite recipes! Now I’d pay extra for that!

  23. Well, I gotta ask, if you’re preparing that much food each day, what are you doing with it after the photo shoots?? Feeding the neighbors, church groups, shelters? Lucky bastards…..

  24. I agree with the comment about the tools needed! Also, if you use a ingredient that isn’t too common it would be good to know where to buy it (can you go to the grocery store or do you have to get it online) and, if possible, brand preferences and a substitution for that ingredient. And, maybe some notes on something that you should not substitute or eliminate.
    I’ve already pre-ordered, can’t wait to get it! 🙂

  25. I love it when cookbooks have ingredient indexes in the back. I’m sure it’s a major pain in the ass to compile but when I’m trying to make something in a pinch with what I’ve got in the fridge it makes life so much easier!
    And oodles and oodles of pictures! I rarely make recipes that don’t have a picture accompanying it.

  26. What I look for are new and different recipes. It seems every paleo cookbook has their version: cauli-mash, cauli-rice, coconut whipped “cream,” etc. While the basics are good to know, I don’t need them in every cookbook I own!

  27. That’s really funny, I pulled up your book on Amazon this morning to see when it is coming out, and had the exact same thought about the cover pic! It’s gorgeous, but not what i have come to love and expect from you! I hope your new cover pic has your ring, and Jackson in it!

    As for cookbooks, I love it when the ingredients are in the order in which they are used. I also really like photo indexes!

  28. I really love when there is a suggestive “it pairs well with” at the end of the recipe. Melissa Joulwan from Well Fed does this in her books and i love it… thats always the tricky part for me..trying to figure out what side dishes go with what meat dishes.

  29. I like cookbooks that have a section in the back of menus for holidays and special events like superbowl parties etc. Ina Garten cookbooks have this and it is a great help in taking out the guess work of what to cook with what. It is also a great way to integrate all the recipes for the reader.

  30. I use cookbooks that have pictures for every single recipe the most. If it’s not pictured, I’m not making it. I guess I’m a visual person

    1. i like you. i’ll make sure to tell that “joke” (really just an actual fact) when my book releases and I share some recipes from the book!

  31. I love reading any shortcuts or quick tips that the recipe creator likes to use. For example, splitting it up where you make a sauce the night before to make it easier at dinner time. Also, love when there are suggestions for leftover ingredients (like what recipe in your book uses egg whites when all another one calls for is egg yolks).

    I cannot wait to see the new cover. 🙂

  32. The food photography looks amazing! And I agree with the cover change- you looked beautiful in the photo, but I think it was too buttoned-up for your personality. Loved the dress for real life, but I thought the pattern was a bit distracting…can’t wait to see the new one!

  33. I love when cookbook authors include notes on a recipe — maybe it’s the story behind it or other things in the book that would be good with it or just why you do something a certain why (like the note about not peeling the sweet potatoes in The Paleo Kitchen — now I never do either!). Can’t wait to get my hands on this book and eat everything in it!

  34. My favorite cookbooks have quick recipes that don’t have weird, expensive ingredients! Some of that is ok, but I need easy weeknight meals and crockpot stuff! Also, love that you’re changing the cover, you look beautiful but it so doesn’t fit your personality. Good move!

  35. I really liked the notes sections in OMG that’s Paleo. The Paleo Kitchen is far prettier, but I’ll refer back the notes I’ve made in this book even when modifying other receipes.

  36. I love the suggestion someone had of listing the ingredients in order of use throughout the recipe. Makes total sense!

    Also, some math conversions (1/2 c + __ tblsp, etc.) and substitutions (something like: instead of strong coffee, you can use 1/2 c. water and 1 tsp espresso powder) can be handy in a pinch.

    I love reading through your cookbook. Every time I pick it up, I see something else that’s so great….especially when I see you and George screwing around in the kitchen. Such personality!!!! Can’t wait to get the new one. <3

  37. My Dad was a chef so I grew up surrounded by cookbooks. Unfortunately, there are so many “free” recipes via the Internet that cookbooks are sadly now more obsolete. I still buy them but not as much as I used to and I am a girl that LOVES them. It’s sad, really. When I do buy a cookbook; however, it has to be different and special and what makes a cookbook special to me is one that includes personal notes and anecdotes about the author. I can just google a recipe but I can’t google a personal story that goes with each recipe…that’s special. And it makes it more than a cookbook but it personalizes it and adds entertainment value as well.

    Idk…just a thought.

  38. I love when the author recommends mains and sides- like “serve the pork roast with cauliflower rice on page 105”

    It makes meal planning easy!

  39. I am a mom. I have two kids, and another on the way (that is a super big secret, though, so don’t tell anyone), so when I see a see a recipe that calls for a crap load of prep work, or 35 ingredients that I will need to go to 17 stores to find, it’s out. I love to cook, but over complicated recipes don’t work for me. Congrats on the new house, by the way, and I love how supportive this community is of one another, and their projects. It’s awesome.

  40. Darn, I LOVED that original cover and the dress! But I can see your point.

    When I read cookbooks, I enjoy a clean, simple layout that is modern and easy to follow. As for the recipes, I love simplicity and the addition of tip on how to make the dish freezable or make-ahead.

    Love all you do! Keep the awesome stuff coming!

  41. I love recipes that can build off of each other like in your last one where you had pulled pork and then other recipes you can use it in. I also love stories that go along with a recipe it make it entertaining and typically makes me want to try the recipe more:)

  42. I agree with Jessica! I’m planning on returning to the work force soon and won’t have a ton of time for putting meals together. I like recipes that are simple, few ingredients, and don’t require 3hrs. in the oven.

  43. I like a photo with every recipe, a coil binding so book will lay flat & instructions given in bullet points rather than long paragraphs that you have to read through (more detail can be added above or below detailed instructions in a more narrative format).

    1. i love coil bindings too because they are so easy to flip through BUT bookstores and publishers don’t like it as much because you can see the name of the cookbook on the binding when it is tucked away with all of the other books. so mine sadly won’t have that

  44. I agree with all of the comments about including comments before each recipe. The little blurb at the start of a recipe catches my eye almost as much as the picture. It gives me another way of catching the essence of a recipe. So excited for the new cookbook!!

  45. I love it when cookbooks and recipes in general note how long they will last and if you can freeze them.

  46. I had the same thought when you first presented your cover: “Wow, Juli’s really going upscale with this one!” Can’t wait to see the new look!

    I would love a cookbook that included a shopping list for groups of recipes. So either a per-meal focus (make this main course, these two sides, and this dessert with this shopping list), or a per-ingredient focus (make a week’s worth of lunches using these three recipes and this shopping list). That’s what would make it truly stand out over other cookbooks – less thought and planning required by me!

  47. I have all of your cookbooks and I’m very excited about the next one!

    Part of budgeting clean eating for me is using every bit of leftovers. If a meal serves 4, I won’t have leftover pulled pork to use in a different recipe. If a recipe can be sourced for multiple dishes I would like to know how the leftovers can be used and what volume is necessary so I can make enough of the main ingredient (normally the protein).

    I prefer meals with as few ingredients as possible and meal plans that pair common ingredients accordingly so fresh items aren’t wasted if only 1/4 cup is needed. I’d like to use the other 3/4 cup the next day somehow.

  48. I agree with the previous comments about pics for each recipe, how to freeze it etc. When I buy a cook book, I usually sit down and look at it page by page. I usually remember recipes that stand-out for me but they’re difficult to re-find. For example, I’m looking at a cookbook and notice a wonderful recipe for something with flank steak. I don’t usually have it in the house. So, 3 weeks later when I’m at the grocer and they have flank steak on sale I buy it with that stand-out recipe in mind. I go home to look up said recipe only to discover I can’t find the recipe because it’s listed in the index under some cute recipe title that might not have flank steak as part of the title. Then I have to go page by page to find it again. So, It’s nice to have a picture index of all of the recipes in the book at the back of the book, or list recipes, like my example, under their title and under the main ingredient, such as beef etc.

  49. To ripe your plantains faster, put them in a plastic bag (dark if possible) with an apple inside, close the bag and put the bag in a dark place (cabinet, closet)
    Im Venezuelan and I know lots of tips about our ingredients that are life savers!!!!

    1. i tried it with an onion (another fellow Venezuelan gave me that tip) and 1 out of 6 ripen and still not to the super soft liking I prefer! aw well, hopefully they work for my pictures for the book today!

      1. I have never done it with an onion, but always with the apple and Im telling you it has worked everytime. Its not an immediate solution but give it a few days (for future use since you are taking the pictures today). If they are toooo green maybe even a few weeks but still is a lot faster than maturing on their own!
        I cant wait to get your new cookbook and try your plantain recipes! 😉

  50. I think you should totally repurpose the dress as a tunic top (although not sure as I can’t see the skirt on it) and pair it with any one of black leather pants, white denim jeans or go totally grunge with acid-washed grey jeans and combat boots (do people still wear those?), stilettos or some of your awesome booties. Add a leather jacket and some heavy-duty accessories and you’re set!

    I’ve only seen it in one cookbook, but the recipes were actually grouped (and listed in the index) by chief protein source (chicken vs. beef vs. egg vs. whey protein) and then within each category by time of day (breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, snacks). This makes sense to me because a lot of my meal planning is “hmmm I just bought some fish and I don’t want to freeze it so what can I make with it” or ” gee, I’m in the mood for pork tonight.”

    Gorgeous photography of every recipe is a no-brainer (and of any tricky process/technique steps), but I think, Bill and Hayley have you covered in that department.

    I also love recipe indices that have a lot of cross-references built in so no matter how you try to look up a recipe, it will pint you to the right part of the index (I.e. If I am looking for a sweet potato and pork meal, the recipe title will show up either in both a Sweet Potato and Pork sections).

    Lots of other good “food for thought” from other readers, too!

  51. The thing that really gets me to buy and then use and love a cookbook is when it says by Juli Bauer on the cover.

    And when there’s a chance they Jackson is in it. Can’t wait!

  52. I personally like having recommendations of what to serve WITH the item. I especially like it if the “what to serve it with” recommendation is out of the same book!

  53. I love your site and your cookbooks. I cannot wait for this one! Ive been eating Paleo style for two years and I feel great. For me – a cookbook must have great photos (and humor or personal stories are an excellent bonus!). I am just now cooking with plantains so I hope there are some recipes using plantains. I seem to get into a major rut when it comes to breakfast….eggs are my go to meal so any inspiration for egg dishes would be appreciated! I make a paleo whipped cream with cocoa powder, stevia, vanilla and coffee extract. Whipped cream is an easy dessert that can be flavored in so many ways. Any ideas? Thanks!!!

  54. Hahaha spice girls, wanna be! Of course. My childhood right there. That sucks people don’t understand your feces humor. I think it’s hilarious, especially in a cookbook. Besides, people who are buying the cookbook are buying it for YOU and your awesome recipes. Which means they’re looking forward to crude humor jokes because that’s just so you! I guess I understand the cookbook cover change though. Maybe just go for you in a trendy cutoff and ripped jeans gnawing on a turkey leg. Is that more your “cookbook style”? (obviously not, but that would be hilarious) 🙂

  55. Love, love pictures with every recipe, and the picture index is a super bonus.

    I also really like the idea of meal ideas/menu planning. I’m terrible about figuring out what goes with what. Even if it’s just to say “Hey dorkwad, just roast some broccoli to go with this bad boy,” I need that kick in the pants!

    Most of all though, ORIGINALITY. Cookbooks are expensive, and then you get these Paleo ones and it seems like I’m buying the same cookbook over and over. Half the book is dedicated to a list of what is in/out on the Paleo diet, and man, that is SO easily attainable online now. Ditto with the “these kitchen tools are neat” section. And if I have to see another plain burger or grilled chicken or plain roasted vegetable recipe, I’m going to scream. I can grill a burger at this point…that’s not why I buy a cookbook! I buy a cookbook because your ideas are better than mine. And I realize there are a lot of Paleo beginners out there, but at this point all of the beginner information is SO accessible…just gimme that pulled pork benedict recipe!

    I have both your other cookbooks and LOVE them. I’ve bought them as gifts for others on several occasions. Can’t wait for your new one!

  56. Although the first cover was gorgeous, it really didn’t seem like “you”. I’m excited to see what you came up with to replace it!

    I was reading through your first cookbook the other day and I have to say that 1) I’m a super huge fan of the recipes and how they all seem delicious and do-able, and 2) How you totally let your personality shine through. I hope you next cookbook will be similar!

  57. Picture for every recipe is a big highlight so u know what it is supposed to look like. I also like when cookbooks indicate the time it takes to prepare and the time it takes to cook each recipe as well as whether you can make it ahead of time. Time management is always difficult for me when cooking. Also a note on substitutions or pairings is great at the end of a recipe.

  58. I love having tips on how to use it with other dishes or how to freeze it for a future meal. Meals Made Simple has things like this and for weekday planning, it is extremely helpful. Also different meats you can sub or veggies to change based on preferences or allergies.

  59. I love knowing what foods make good leftovers (many of your recipes are great for that) and pictures! I’m such a visual person, so seeing a picture of what amazingness I could be making is always super helpful.

    Can’t wait to see the final product! You’ve been a huge inspiration to me to cook more. All of your recipes are easy to follow, make and taste so damn good. Thank you!

  60. Stumbled upon your Bacon Chorizo Chipotle Meatloaf recipe on Pinterest yesterday. I was so delicious! My husband loves meatloaf and declared it the best we have had in ages. Eating leftovers tonight. So glad to have found your site, and will look for your cookbooks as well. I shared the recipe on my blog with a link to your site. I, as well as my youngest daughter, eat gluten free and enjoy finding new recipes. I love to share success stories on my blog as well.

  61. – I think my only criticism to your recipes is when some of the steps get fussy, you don’t always say what to expect (sometimes you do and sometimes you don’t) – it should look smooth, clumpy, thick, whatever. A description is appreciated when mid-step pictures aren’t available.
    – I LOVE Melissa’s Well Fed cookbooks. They are so so user friendly. The time estimates, variations on how to make stuff
    – Love the idea of listing ingredients as they are used
    – And finally, I am glad you’re changing the cover. That cover always throws me off on your website- it doesn’t capture the spirit in which you come across when you write. And I always LOVE what you wear but that dress isn’t my favorite, just a personal opinion obviously
    GOOD LUCK —- you touch and enrich so many people’s lives, probably many more than you realize <3

  62. What I love to find in cookbooks is when the recipe for the entree suggests that it pairs with a side (found on another page). I am horrible at putting full meals together so I rely on the authors to do that for me. I’m not creative 🙁

  63. I love some progress pics in the instructions so I can check in occasionally to make sure I am preparing correctly.

  64. Hi – apologies if this has been said but measurements in weight (ounces, grams what ever) and mLs as well as cups etc for us international viewers!!! Photos are great and also specifying if the oven is fan forced or just conventional helps too! Love the blog and have made heaps of your recipes!

  65. My all time favorite cookbooks are also history books. I love learning how the recipe came about; how and why the ingredients came to be included. This might a little late in the game for mentioning it, but maybe another cookbook down the road?

  66. Personally the things i look for in a cookbook are: Simplicity and clarity.
    Big and quality pictures always help too 🙂

    i need to be able to pick it up and BAM! grab what i need in seconds.


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Greek Chicken Bowls

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