Need a Christmas gift for a coffee lover who already seems to have everything they need? Look to these coffee books and cookbooks.
Coffee people—especially real coffee geeks—are some of the hardest people to gift-shop for. Chances are pretty good that they already have the gear and gadgets, they already have more coffee beans than they can brew, and they’re probably sick of getting cutesy mugs. Thankfully, one of the most beautiful things about coffee is the fact that it touches every aspect of life in so many cultures around the world, which means there’s never any shortage of reading, learning, or exploring to be done about it.
Related Reading: Chowhound Gift Guide 2019: The Best Cookbooks for Carnivores
This year, offer your coffee-obsessed pals and family a chance to explore coffee through a flavor journey, starting with the drink itself but then moving out into the wider world of flavors, experiences, places, and palates. Here are just a few of our favorite coffee-related, coffee-world inspired, or coffee-adjacent cookbooks for your gift-giving pleasure.
“Roasting, Brewing, and More: How to Enjoy Coffee Beyond Your Morning Routine” by Stella Perry, $15.99 on Amazon
Have you got a Starbucks obsessive in your life? Then “Roasting, Brewing, and More: How to Enjoy Coffee Beyond Your Morning Routine” by Stella Perry might be just the thing to help them change up their old standbys. (We sense a New Year’s resolution coming on.) This book helps de-code coffee lingo, demystify the roasting and brewing process, and hopefully inspires anyone who loves java to step out of the usual queue to go on a personal soul search for better coffee in the morning.Buy Now
Anyone whose website is called “Dear Coffee I Love You” probably knows a thing or two about beans and bevs, and longtime coffee-head and designer Brian W. Jones does more than just know a thing or two: He shares them in his beautiful, minimal, and fully accessible book “Brew: Better Coffee at Home.” This is a perfect book whether you’re brand new to making coffee or you’ve been around since espresso-bar menus required a pronunciation key. Buy Now
If you’re going to take a coffee journey somewhere, Ethiopia is the place to start: It’s considered the birthplace of Arabica coffee (the good stuff we drink in specialty cafés) and it’s the place on earth with the oldest and most socially sacred traditions surrounding the coffee ritual. Offer the gift of a trip to this historic land of caffeine dreams with the cookbook “Ethiopia: Recipes and Traditions from the Horn of Africa,” which offers a taste of the place where our favorite drink was born. Buy Now
“Colombian Cookbook: Traditional Colombian Recipes Made Easy” by Grizzly Publishing, $15.99 on Amazon
While you’re giving armchair vacations as gifts, why not send someone down to South America, with a book that goes perfectly alongside a strong brew? “Colombian Cookbook: Traditional Colombian Recipes Made Easy” is a great reminder of the diversity of flavors that Colombia’s cuisine has to offer—just the same as its 14 distinct coffee-growing regions, each of which offers a cup with a unique profile and fantastic flavor. This book is the next best thing to the gift of a trip down to visit Juan Valdez himself. Buy Now
“The Brazilian Cookbook: 50 Delicious Brazilian Recipes for Real Brazilian Cooking” by BookSumo Press, $8.99 on Amazon
“The Brazilian Cookbook: 50 Delicious Brazilian Recipes for Real Brazilian Cooking” will transport your lucky secret Santa recipient to the country with the world’s largest coffee production—Brazil alone is responsible for a third of the world’s coffee!—and if you’re lucky, you might get a home-cooked bowl of feijoada out of it, the national meaty, bean-full stew. (Not coffee beans, this time, though: The dish is typically made with black beans.) You’ll need a strong and sweet cafezinho after eating so well.Buy Now
“The Farmhouse Culture Guide to Fermenting: Crafting Live-Cultured Food and Drinks with 100 Recipes from Kimchi to Kombucha” by Kathryn Lukas and Shane Peterson, $22.96 on Amazon
Coffee isn’t a fermented drink, per se, but fermentation is absolutely one of the steps involved to getting the beans ready to roast and brew: The way that the coffee fruit is fermented or processed in order to remove the seeds (aka beans) has a significant impact over the finished flavor. Real espresso enthusiasts will often wax poetic about the style of fermentation and processing used on coffee, so why not turn them on to fermentation science and DIY with “The Farmhouse Culture Guide to Fermenting: Crafting Live-Cultured Food and Drinks with 100 Recipes from Kimchi to Kombucha?” After all, no human can live on coffee alone—though some might try. Buy Now
“Martha Stewart’s Cooke Perfection: 100+ Recipes to Take Your Sweet Treats to the Next Level” by the editors of Martha Stewart Living, $18.29 on Amazon
Of course, everybody knows you need the perfect thing to dunk, and who could be more of an expert at baking just the right little baked bite than Martha Stewart? Give the gift of “Martha Stewart’s Cookie Perfection: 100+ Recipes to Take Your Sweet Treats to the Next Level” and maybe you’ll be rewarded with a homemade tin of something to dunk in your coffee, to boot.Buy Now
Breakfast without coffee is like tacos without guacamole: Sure, you can eat it, but is it nearly as good? A great cup of joe deserves a hearty, filling, get-up-and-go plate to complement it, and Phaidon Press’s “Breakfast: The Cookbook” will take that morning meal from 0 to 60 in no time flat. With beautiful pictures, inspiring new ideas from around the globe, and inventive twists on the classics, this book will be just the thing your friend or family needs to make the coffee experience complete. Buy Now
See our best food and drink gift guide for even more ideas.
Header image courtesy of Amazon.