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The Best Light Recipe (The Best Recipe)

4.11  ·  Rating Details ·  614 Ratings  ·  25 Reviews
The Best Light Recipe offers more than 300 full-flavored lower-fat and reduced calorie recipes that still taste great and are guaranteed foolproof by the test cooks and editors who bring you Cook's Illustrated magazine. For the first time ever, the editors at America's Test Kitchen have devoted an entire book and more than 300 recipes lighter versions of family favorites. ...more
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published March 1st 2006 by Cook's Illustrated
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Feb 21, 2008 Rebecca rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Those who want to cook light and eat well
This book is written by the kitchen-testing masters who also publish the PBS show "America's Test Kitchen" and "Cook's Illustrated" -- need I say more? The group is essentially Consumer Reports, but for food.

Although flawlessly executing some of the recipes is not my forte, I am always happy with the outcome. each recipe is the result of cooking and tasting tests that try to use the least-fattening ingredients that will yield a result that tastes as good -- or better -- than the original recipe
Juneau Public Library
Trying to prepare good, low-fat meals can be a cook’s biggest challenge. Fortunately, the writers at America's Test Kitchen have pulled together 300 of their greatest lower-fat recipes. The Best Light Recipe reads like any of the Test Kitchen's publications: first a summary of how the recipe as developed, including trials and errors and how substituting different ingredients altered the result, followed by a step-by-step recipe, including serving size and calorie counts. Interspersed throughout ...more
Dec 22, 2009 Tracy rated it it was amazing
Cook's Illustrated recipes tend to be reliable and safe. They're not terribly exciting, but if you're called upon to produce solid meals for a family this is a good way to go.

So far I've cooked Scalloped Potatoes and One-Pot Chicken and Rice from this book. Both were really good, and the Chicken & Rice recipe was easy to make.

If they put out another edition of this, I'd like to see more attention paid to low-sugar and low-carbohydrate recipes--even though "low-carb" is kind of an icky diet
Jun 16, 2008 Echo rated it it was amazing
I love this book. It is such a great idea. Someone else does all the work to find the best way to make favorites into light recipes. They also list nutrition info. for recipes and test kitchen appliances and products. I also love the show that goes along with it "America's Test Kitchen" on KBYU...addicting! I've made the New York Cheesecake from the book and it was awesome! My Mom has done the lasagna & the stuffed peppers and she said they were both fantastic...I think I'll try chocolate ch ...more
Jan 19, 2010 Liz rated it really liked it
The second best part about books from Cook's Illustrated is that I know the recipes are rock solid. The best part? Knowing that they explain their process well enough that I know where and when I can tinker. This book does an excellent job of giving us classics (and some not so) and making them just a tad healthier in the process, while avoiding many of the highly processed substitutes of the last fifty years. Yum!
Sep 24, 2008 Emilie rated it it was amazing
The uber-geeks at CI have my undying devotion for publishing the bang-on, hands-down, slam-dunk most reliably excellent cookbooks in the biz. They don't just give you a good recipe. They give you THE recipe, tell you why it's the only one you should bother with, and then actually teach you all the cooking skills to do it right. This light edition is my go-to bible. It's parked a foot away from my gas range, and it never fails me.
Apr 22, 2008 Joelen rated it really liked it
Although this book is done in conjunction of Cook's Illustrated and ATK, its a very good book full of classic recipes scaled down with a healthier, lighter focus. Of course, the real thing can't be beat but recipes in this book come pretty close. My only negative point is that some of the substitutions don't really come through but its the recipes are good nonetheless. I guess its the price to pay if you want decadent dishes converted into something a bit healthier.
Jan 04, 2013 Linda rated it really liked it
The title says it all... can't miss recipes, which doesn't mean I don't change them a little bit but the first time through I stick with the original ingredients and method. I return to this cookbook over and over again... well actually every single cookbook that Cooks' Illustrated has ever printed!
Kim M-M
Oct 25, 2008 Kim M-M rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: cooks, home owner
Amazing book!- like everything they print. This breaks down a lot of traditional recipes and redefines them for the health conscious eater. Chock full of tips and illustrations, it's enjoyable just to read as well as to follow.
For the truly analytical cook, and those who really want to know the science behind cooking.
Aug 29, 2008 Sharon rated it did not like it
Shelves: cookbook
Okay I know these cookbooks by America's Test Kitchen are supposed to be great, but they are not the type of cookbooks I love. No pictures! How do you have a cookbook with no pictures! I at least like the final picture, but even "in progress" pictures can be helpful, especially if it is for a tricky step.
Nov 30, 2010 Jennifer rated it really liked it
This book is not nearly as comprehensive as "The Best Recipe" basic cookbook but has some good lighter versions of standard yummy dishes. I recommend the French potato salad recipe (vinaigrette, not mayo).
Susan Howson
Mar 25, 2010 Susan Howson rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cookbooks
No one can write a recipe like America's Test Kitchen. I have never had anything fail. AND I'M NOT ABOUT TO. This book is beautiful, arranged well, rustically illustrated (with a few photographs), and everything I've made from it has been not only interesting but good for the body and mind, etc.
Dec 28, 2014 Sarah rated it it was amazing
My sister gave this to me years ago, and I've made a whole bunch of things from it. Yogurt cheese, hummus, carrot cake, corn bread, sugar cookies. They mostly turned out pretty good. It is a nice reference, though sometimes I question if their definition of light is the same as mine.
Laura Schnettler
Jun 06, 2013 Laura Schnettler rated it liked it
Not my favorite cookbook, was a little disappointed that the recipes are not much different than other Cook's Illustrated or ATK cookbooks.
Mar 15, 2012 Kristin rated it really liked it
Shelves: cookbooks
Buy this book for the stir fry recipes alone. We also love the chicken pot pie.
Feb 07, 2012 Jessica rated it liked it
the recipes can be daunting with their details but generally turn out well.
Nov 13, 2009 Grace rated it really liked it
Shelves: cookbook
Another classic from Cook's Illustrated. We read a bunch of recipes to learn the general pattern, and then improvise with what we have.
Stephanie Mohler
Nov 27, 2011 Stephanie Mohler rated it really liked it
I'm a fan of these cookbooks and the shows. The recipes in this book will help me prepare healthier food for my family.
Feb 01, 2011 Catherine rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cooking
This is a great addition to the America's Test Kitchen canon.
Apr 29, 2007 Jenny rated it it was amazing
My current favorite cookbook!
Jan 08, 2008 Audrey rated it really liked it
These recipes are fussy, but good. Unfortunately there aren't very many "Variations" on the recipes, and there is usually only one recipe for each type of dish.
Peter Dyer
Apr 10, 2013 Peter Dyer rated it really liked it
great cheesecake recipe and they explain really well how they came up with this light version
Aug 15, 2010 Sara marked it as to-read
My library only had this book, which my butt/hips will like more than the full fat version...
Jun 28, 2007 Kristen rated it it was amazing
This is one of my favorite cook books.
Aug 15, 2012 Sarah rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2012
The clam chowder turned out awesome, the angel food cake is nowhere near as good as Alton Brown's (sorry Test Kitcheners).
Nancy rated it it was amazing
Sep 07, 2015
Rebecca rated it really liked it
May 28, 2014
Claudia rated it it was amazing
Feb 25, 2015
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Jun 17, 2008
Monique rated it liked it
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