Best Lebanese Cookbooks

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Lebanese cookbooks offer the best of the varied Middle Eastern cuisine. Many civilizations and cultures have influenced the food of this small Mediterranean country. The historical roots of Lebanese food link back thousands of years to Egyptian, Persian, Byzantine, Arab, Greek, Roman, and Neo-Babylonian cultures. Lebanese recipes are often found in Middle Eastern Cookbooks featuring Turkey and Morocco.

The Best Lebanese Cookbooks

There are amazing cookbooks available that include Traditional Lebanese cuisine and newly invented Lebanese dishes with a solid vegetarian slant. These delectable recipes abound with fresh, wholesome ingredients and the flavors of olive oil, flower waters, lemon, garlic, cumin, anise, cinnamon, parsley, chickpeas, eggplant, and pomegranates. Lebanese cookbooks read like exotic, tempting travel journals.

Lebanese cuisine is renowned for its aromatic spices combined with chicken, lamb, fish, and always plenty of fresh vegetables. Lebanese cuisine provides a healthier alternative than the average Western way of cooking. Middle Eastern recipes combine low-fat ingredients with wholewheat, legumes, yogurt, beneficial herbs, and spices.

Well-known Lebanese dishes like hummus, pita bread, falafel, and baklawa are found with unexpected twists in an abundance of excellent cookbooks. Choosing which recipe to try first is a difficult choice. Which books to buy is another challenging but exciting decision. Below is a tasty preview of what you can expect in these exquisite cookbooks.

Classic Lebanese Cuisine: 170 Fresh And Healthy Mediterranean Favorites

  • Total Recipes: 170
  • Total Pages: 256
  • Recipes Preview: Stuffed Eggplant with Pine Nuts; Pomegranate Beef and Cheese Pies; Lebanese Caraway Couscous; Pita Crouton Salad with Sumac Dressing; Cod baked in Citrus Tahini
  • The Best Recipe We Want To Try: Crispy Bean & Herb Patties with Tahini Sauce

Chef Kamal Al-Faqih’s definitive book on traditional and authentic Lebanese cuisine contains colorful photographs and step-by-step instructions for every recipe. This cookbook shares a renowned chef’s favorite recipes like tabouli, kibbi, baba ghanouj, stuffed grape leaves, and the fire-roasted succulent lamb dishes that he is famous for. 

Every chapter speaks of Chef Kamal’s food journey as he relates his experiences in various locations throughout Lebanon. Classic Lebanese Cuisine is a book that will entice adventurous first-timers and experienced cooks to try these healthy five-star dishes.

About the Author: Kamal Al-Faqih was the first head chef at Med Catering in Washington for twenty years. Med Catering was the first entirely Mediterranean catering company in D.C. and gained fame by providing authentic Lebanese dishes to embassy events at the White House. Chef Kamal wrote Classic Lebanese Cuisine in 2005 from his Californian home at Ladera Ranch.

Taste Of Beirut: 175+ Delicious Lebanese Recipes from Classics to Contemporary to Mezzes and More

  • Total Recipes: 175
  • Total Pages: 320
  • Recipes Preview: Quick and easy Baklava; Pumpkin Kibbeh Pie; Falafel Loaf with Tarator Sauce; Konafa Cake with Nuts (Osmalliyeh); Spinach Turnovers (Fatayer Bel-Sabanegh)
  • The Best Recipe We Want To Try: Bulgar Salad in Eggplant Boats

Joumana Accad shares the Lebanese recipes she learned from her grandmother’s food artistry. Her recipes strive to accomplish the most delicious dishes using just a few ingredients. Many recipes can be made in less than an hour but are healthy, flavorful, and varied. This book features her expertise in food photography and a warm teaching style with many personal cultural anecdotes.

Taste of Beirut has a lot of information about storing, sourcing, and serving every classical ingredient in Lebanese cooking. She shares tips on kitchen basics and preparations of spice mixes and pastes that can be used in many recipes. Recipes include every meal from breakfast to dinner, finger food, and dessert.

About the Author: Joumana Accad grew up in Lebanon. She moved to America in 1979 and trained as a pastry chef. She is passionate about her ancestral food, which imbues her professional catering and food blogging. Taste of Beirut is her first cookbook and takes inspiration from her grandmother’s family recipes. 

Arabesque: A Taste of Morocco, Turkey, & Lebanon

  • Total Recipes: 150
  • Total Pages: 342
  • Recipes Preview: Smoked Mackerel with Walnut Sauce; Kofte Kebab with Tomato Sauce and Yoghurt; Baked Kibbeh with Onion and Pine Nuts; Chicken “Buried in Vermicelli;” Lamb Stew with Shallots and Chestnuts
  • The Best Recipe We Want To Try: Chicken with Fresh Figs and Walnuts

Claudia Roden combines the best recipes from the Middle East in this cookbook that focuses on the culinary delights of Morocco, Turkey, and Lebanon. She turns the mezze (tantalizing appetizers) from Lebanon into dishes that can be served as whole meals. The straightforward cooking techniques make it easy to prepare these delectable dishes.

Claudia combines subtle flavors in a new harmonious way that still links to the traditional dishes of Lebanon. She believes in recipes that evolve to be tastier and easier to prepare than when they were first invented. Vegetarians and meat-lovers will find a variety of classic and specialty recipes here.

About the Author: Award-winning cook and author Claudia Roden has been sharing her passion for Middle Eastern cuisine since writing A Book Of Middle Eastern Food in the 1960s. She presented the TV series Mediterranean cookery with Claudia Roden on BBC television. In Arabesque, she combines her personal experiences with local history’s influence on Middle Eastern cuisine’s evolution. 

Rose Water & Orange Blossoms: Fresh And Classic Recipes From My Lebanese Kitchen

  • Total Recipes: 100+
  • Total Pages: 256
  • Recipes Preview: Whipped Hummus with Minced Lamb and Sumac; Pistachio-Crusted Whitefish with Parsley-Lemon Butter; Roast Leg of lamb with Black Cherry-Pomegranate Salsa; Toasted Bulgur with Poached Chicken and Cinnamon; Pomegranate Rose Sorbet
  • The Best Recipe We Want To Try: Hushweh (Chicken Pilaf with Butter Toasted Almonds)

This book starts with Maureen Abood’s simple but terrific guide to the foundational backbone, or as she calls it in her first chapter, the flavor-makers of Lebanese cuisine. Straightforward, easy recipes for making Labneh (thick yogurt), Garlic sauce (toum), and Flower water syrup are just the start of a remarkable collection of diverse recipes.

Maureen’s book is infused with pride in her Lebanese roots and an appreciation for every ingredient that leads to the enticing recipes she shares with the world. She incorporates the luscious flavors of pistachios, pomegranates, and orange blossom syrup and invigorates traditional Lebanese home cooking with a delightful style of her own. 

About the Author: Maureen Abood has deep Lebanese ancestry even though she grew up in America. A milestone journey to Lebanon inspired the writing of this book and her award-winning food blog. Maureen attended various culinary schools in Chicago and San Francisco and described her journey toward flying solo in the kitchen in this finely crafted book. 

Saha: A Chef’s Journey Through Lebanon and Syria

  • Total Recipes: 150
  • Total Pages: 272
  • Recipes Preview: Spinach, Lentil and Lemon Soup (Bedouin style); Jeweled Cracked Wheat Pilaf with Honey-Ginger Tomato Sauce; Raspberry Turkish Delight Truffles; Lebanese Milk Pudding with Passionfruit (Passionfruit muhallabeya); Quail in Fragrant Rice with Dates; Ginger and Pearl Onions
  • The Best Recipe We Want To Try: Lebanese Style Dumplings in Yoghurt Soup with Silverbeet (Chiche Barak)

Saha is about Greg Malouf’s monthlong culinary journey to his ancestral land from Persia and Lebanon to North Africa. The recipes are a lineup of classical peasant dishes to fragrant, spicy, and complexly flavorful meals that are fit for kings. 

Photos, stories, and recipes from their travels through Lebanon and Syria make this more than just a cookbook. Saha is an artwork of a book with fabulous recipes and beautiful photography by Matt Harvey.

About the Author: Chef Greg Malouf and his partner Lucy Malouf (food & travel writer) have won many awards for their Middle Eastern cookbooks. Saha: A Chef’s Journey has won the Gourmet Voice Foods Media’s Grand Prix award in France and a Gold Trophy for Best Food Book. Greg Malouf is world-famous for his inspirational cookbooks that blend ancient and modern in design and content.

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