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Best Overall: Clean Paleo Family Cookbook at Amazon
"If you’re unsure about the 'rules' of the paleo diet, rest assured the helpful introduction section explains everything you need to know."
Best for Beginners: The Simple Paleo Kitchen at Amazon
"The dishes are all gluten-free and grain-free, but with recipes like Buffalo Chicken–Stuffed Sweet Potatoes, you'll forget you’re following any diet."
Best for Comfort Food: Clean Paleo Comfort Food Cookbook at Walmart
"Healthy comfort food seems like an oxymoron, but this cookbook sets out to do just that."
Best One-Pot: The One-Pot Paleo Cookbook at Amazon
"Recipes like Lemon Blueberry Pancakes and Sweet Potato Hash and Eggs will have you re-thinking just how much you can do with one cooking vessel."
Best Bowls: Unbelievabowl Paleo at Amazon
"This cookbook goes beyond the usual salad bowls, with options for desserts and even comfort foods like meatloaf."
Best for Baking: Paleo Baking at Home at Barnes & Noble
"Recipes include both savory and sweet baked goods, covering everything from Authentic Soft Pretzels and Hearty Paleo Sandwich Bread to Creamy Lemon Bars."
Best Quick Cooking: Quick Prep Paleo at Amazon
"Even recipes notorious for longer cook times can be done quickly and healthily, such as Quick Creamy Bolognese Sauce."
Best for Two: The Paleo Cookbook for Two at Amazon
"Sticking to a diet is no easy task, but it’s a lot easier if you have the support of a partner and a cookbook that has tailored recipes perfect for two."
The paleo diet means sticking to proteins like fish and lean meats, while also eating plenty of fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds. Dairy products, legumes, and grains are all items that are to be avoided. While these tenets may sound simple enough to follow in writing, putting them into practice in the kitchen is an entirely different challenge. But with these paleo cookbooks, you’ll be set up for success and feeling like a paleo pro in no time.
Here, the best paleo cookbooks to help you enjoy delicious meals.
Best Overall: Clean Paleo Family Cookbook
This family-friendly cookbook is the perfect addition to your cookbook collection, particularly for those interested in paleo and keto, which share many similarities. This book of 100 recipes was designed to ensure maximum flavor while following the guidelines of these diets. Recipes like Peach Crisp, Zucchini & Onion Fritters, and Creamy Mushroom & Bacon Chicken Thighs will have your family excited for dinnertime.
If you’re unsure about the “rules” of paleo, keto, or what “clean paleo” even means, rest assured the helpful introduction section explains everything you need to know to get started (including pantry essentials, meal prep tips, and definitions).
Best for Beginners: The Simple Paleo Kitchen
This new release is all about saving you time. With five steps or fewer per recipe, this cookbook is perfect for beginners who don’t want to spend hours in the kitchen. According to the publisher, this book is all about ease—with meals designed to be efficient and take away some of the kitchen cleanup time. The 60 paleo dishes are all gluten-free and grain-free, but with recipes like Buffalo Chicken–Stuffed Sweet Potatoes and No-Bake German Chocolate Cake Bars, you will forget you’re following any sort of diet.
Best for Comfort Food: Clean Paleo Comfort Food Cookbook
Healthy comfort food seems like an oxymoron, but this cookbook is out to do just that. These 100 recipes, many of which happen to also be keto-friendy and low FODMAP, include favorites like Baked Mac and Cheese, Chicken Bacon Ranch Meatloaf, and Ham and Potato Soup (the author believes that “no diet, no matter how healthy, is sustainable if the only thing you can eat is plain protein with a side of green vegetables.”)
An introduction section details the author’s story, and the book covers essential equipment and basics. Each recipe notes allergy tags clearly, so you can be confident and safe if you’re working with any food allergies or sensitivities.
Best One-Pot: The One-Pot Paleo Cookbook
This cookbook makes paleo easy with one-vessel meals. These vessels include stockpots, sheet pans, skillets, and electric pressure cookers, lending plenty of variety to your meal routine. There are even a handful of 15-minute recipes for those days you’re extra time-crunched. The book also includes pantry basics and essential kitchen equipment, so you can be sure your kitchen is well-stocked with paleo-friendly ingredients so you can be ready to go.
For those new to the paleo diet, a helpful introduction section explains the basics and benefits of the diet. Recipes like Lemon Blueberry Pancakes, Chocolate Chia Pudding Bowl, and Sweet Potato Hash and Eggs will have you re-thinking just how much you can do with one cooking vessel.
Best Bowls: Unbelievabowl Paleo
There’s a good reason that bowls have become a popular meal option recently; from the ease (fewer dishes) to the Instagram appeal (who doesn’t love a tidy bowl shot full of vibrant produce?), these power bowls lend themselves quite well to the paleo diet. This cookbook goes beyond the usual salad bowls, proving that there are many more bowl recipe opportunities to be had, like in desserts (Microwave Double Chocolate Cake Bowl anyone?) and even comfort foods like meatloaf (who wouldn’t want to try the Perfect Meatloaf and Mashed Potato Bowl on a cold winter evening?).
Best for Baking: Paleo Baking at Home
If you didn’t think it was possible to make delicious baked goods on the paleo diet, this book is here to prove you wrong. Even if you aren't paleo, this cookbook is filled with plenty of recipes to work into your lifestyle. These 60 recipes include both savory and sweet baked goods, covering everything from Authentic Soft Pretzels and Hearty Paleo Sandwich Bread to Creamy Lemon Bars and Double Chocolate Frosted Layer Cake. A thorough introduction section includes equipment and ingredient recommendations to ensure you have everything you need to be successful.
Best Quick Cooking: Quick Prep Paleo
If you’re short on time but still determined to avoid takeout and cook your own meals (the preferable scenario especially when following a diet), this recipe collection is perfect for you. Recipes only take 5-15 minutes of hands-on effort, letting “the oven, stove, slow cooker or Instant Pot do all the work while you enjoy extra free time at home.” Even recipes notorious for longer cook times can be done quickly, such as Quick Creamy Bolognese Sauce, Better-For-You Mississippi Pot Roast, and Asparagus and Mushroom Risotto.
Best for Two: The Paleo Cookbook for Two
Sticking to a new cooking regime is no easy task, but it’s a lot easier if you have the support of a partner and a cookbook that has tailored recipes perfect for two. Enter this book, which is here to support your food journey and lends itself to couples or roommates. This cookbook of 100 recipes is a great choice for beginners as well since it includes an introduction section to explain paleo basics, one-pot recipes, five-ingredient recipes, and 30-minute recipes.
There is nutritional information provided for each dish, and there are low-carb, vegetarian, and diabetes-friendly options for those with more specific needs. Recipes like Avocado Baked Eggs and Chicken and Shrimp Gumbo will satisfy you and your partner while reducing waste, minimizing leftovers, and saving you money.
If you’re looking for a well-rounded, family-focused cookbook that not only covers paleo but also includes keto and “clean paleo” recipes, the Clean Paleo Family Cookbook (view at Amazon) will be perfect for your recipe needs. If you’re new to paleo, we love the simplicity of The Simple Paleo Kitchen (view at Amazon). The book’s goal is to save you time, so recipes max out at five steps, ensuring unfussy, tasty food that’s perfect for beginners but will also appeal to more experienced cooks who are in a time crunch but still want to stick to their diet.
What to Look for in Paleo Cookbooks
Cookbooks are written for all kinds of experience levels, so consider whether your level of familiarity with the paleo diet. If you're brand new, you might need a cookbook that's more introductory and comprehensive than someone who's already immersed in the topic. You could also consider your experience in the kitchen, more generally, in addition to how well you know paleo cooking. Some books will be geared more toward those looking for a culinary challenge and more time in the kitchen, and others court home cooks who want to get dinner on the table quickly during the week.
One of the main concerns when buying any cookbook pertains to the ingredients. This may feel especially pertinent with a paleo cookbook because some of the ingredients may be unfamiliar. However, look at the recipes and see if they include ones you're familiar with. Often a cookbook will contain notes about the best places to purchase unusual or potentially unfamiliar ingredients. Do they require you to find obscure or expensive ingredients that will require special ordering or sourcing online? Or are the ingredients ones you already have, or are likely to easily find at the grocery store?
Some recipes are focused exclusively on one particular appliance, such as an Instant Pot or an air fryer, which can make your time in the kitchen much more efficient. Some might just require other kinds of equipment, such as an immersion blender, a grill, and so forth. Be sure to take a look at the book closely, usually in the front matter, to see what kind of equipment is needed before making a purchase.
What makes a recipe paleo?
A paleo recipe is one that favors meats, seafood, fish, vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds; if you could forage for it, you can eat it on the paleo diet. It follows the diet of our ancestors, so it forbids processed food and refined sugar, along with dairy, legumes, and grains. Paleo recipes favor natural sweeteners such as honey and maple syrup, although sparingly.
Who invented the paleo diet?
Despite the fact that this diet has recently become very popular and the way of eating itself, paradoxically, goes back to our ancestors, the term was coined in the 1970s by gastroenterologist Walter Voegtlin. He believed that a return to this old style of eating would provide health benefits.
What's the difference between paleo and keto diets?
These diets are similar in several ways. They both exclude grains, legumes, and sugar, and emphasize whole foods. The paleo diet, however, places its emphasis on what you are eating and not calorie counting, whereas the keto diet requires you to count the macronutrients of what you consume. The keto diet prioritizes the restriction of carbohydrates and emphasizes fats and protein.
Why Trust The Spruce Eats?
The Spruce Eats writer Alyssa Langer is a licensed registered dietitian and a cookbook enthusiast herself, collecting dozens over the years and always turning to them for inspiration, whether it’s a time-consuming weekend baking project or just a quick Monday night dinner. Having worked in the cookbook publishing world in the past, she knows what it takes to create a quality book that delivers something new and exciting to readers—particularly in an increasingly online world.