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The Can't Cook Book: Recipes for the Absolutely Terrified!

3.92  ·  Rating details ·  633 ratings  ·  76 reviews
From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Deceptively Delicious, an essential collection of more than 100 simple recipes that will transform even the most kitchenphobic “Can’t Cooks” into “Can Cooks.”

Are you smart enough to dodge a telemarketer yet clueless as to how to chop a clove of garlic? Are you clever enough to forward an e-mail but don’t know the difference
ebook, 240 pages
Published October 8th 2013 by Atria Books (first published September 17th 2013)
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3.92  · 
Rating details
 ·  633 ratings  ·  76 reviews

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Oct 24, 2013 rated it really liked it
I need to qualify this by saying that I'm not really a fan of her earlier cookbooks. The recipes in 'Deceptively Delicious' borrowed heavily from the Sneaky Chef, and I'm fairly convinced she would not have been published if it hadn't been for her husband. I generally look for family-friendly and healthy, but Lapine's recipes are better (I realize that a judge found that Seinfeld hadn't copied Lapine, but I disagree).

So, I wasn't prepared to like this as much as I did. She's ditched the purees a
Dec 10, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cook-book
Jessica Seinfeld has a number of things working for her in this cookbook, a fantastic food photographer and easy to make recipes that are also delicious. The layout and step by step directions are exactly as stated in the title, this book is for folks who are disasters in the kitchen or who have never cooked before. Literally everything is written in 1.2.3 how to's such as how to salt and pepper your food and how to wash produce. I'm not a fan of her writing style, a little to trying-to-be-frien ...more
Nov 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cook-book, nook
Let me start by saying this: I can cook. I can follow a recipe. I can even change them to fit my needs and flavor preferences. None of that matters. I love this cookbook. Everyone needs a handful of quick, go to recipes that take little effort and this cookbook offers that and more. My husband has even been able to make use of it. He would probably use it more if he could figure out how to navigate my tablet. We've made probably fifteen or so recipes so far and have made almost all of those over ...more
Nov 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: food-health
Love Jessica Seinfeld and was not disappointed with this cookbook. Beautiful photography, great layout and yummy, simple recipes. Made the huevos rancheros for lunch today and will be adding it to the rotation.
I haven't found a lot of recipes to try in this cookbook. But it's nicely photographed and the recipes do seem easy to follow.
Mar 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
"If the only cooking you've done is stirring a spoon in a cup of coffee, you will be able to do these."

This is a pretty good introductory cooking book.

It's supplemented with lots of photos and web links that help you make sure you know what you're doing. The book seems to assume that you're starting at the beginning and working your way through it because by the time you're a few recipes in it says things that imply you should know what you're doing by know so flipping through to pick a recipe m
The other Sandy
Jul 09, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction, cooking
Fairly simple techniques explained in plain English. There's even an illustrated section that demonstrates how to do things like zest a lemon or peel and pit an avocado, with links to online videos that demonstrate the techniques. Also, there are more recipes that look edible to me than I usually find in cookbooks.

I'm knocking off one star because all but two of the breakfast recipes are egg dishes, which is not helpful to those who have egg protein allergies, and because almost all of the recip
Clinton Senior
Nov 09, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: cookbook-club
Mixed reviews on this book. We were split on the recipes some were good and some were not. But we all learned something we didn't know about the kitchen so we would recommend this book for a younger or unexperienced cook.
Sep 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cook-books, own
Every recipe I've tried in this book so far has been amazing. She's simple, yet innovative, and explains things in a way that is super easy to understand. I especially loved how many veggie recipe she includes, as a lot of cook books today don't have very many veggie recipes.
DK Simoneau
Oct 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
I haven't made a recipe from it yet. But I love love love reading cookbooks. I'm previewing some for someone in my life who has decided it's time to learn to cook but is intimidated. This looks to be a very great starting place! I think I may have to make some of these recipes for myself.
Justyna Justy
Jul 23, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very good tips, guides, and knowledge - Especially for someone who doesn't know what they are doing.
Apr 01, 2018 rated it liked it
Pretty good starter cook book, I actually quite enjoyed this book, it went back to basics, so I skimmed through that part, but it still had some good tips that I wasn't familiar with.
Nov 20, 2017 rated it it was ok
I guess I'm an outlier. I found the tone condescending and didn't think she actually provided helpful guidance. I have one recipe I considered a keeper.
Jackson Matthews
Recipes not too difficult, and very tasty.
Dec 29, 2017 rated it it was ok
Wouldn't mind it as a reference, but sometimes the book came off as REALLY condescending....i dunno, I am divided to be honest.
Dixie Diamond
I liked this better than I expected to.

This would actually be a good weeknight cookbook for pretty much anyone who isn't a super-serious cook, even if s/he is somewhat experienced. The recipes are basic--roasted vegetables, etc.--but they look good and are the kinds of things that would make good go-to recipes; simple, tasty, quickly memorized, easily adapted by substituting vegetables or changing seasonings to suit your own taste. They're pretty healthy on average, they don't require obscure in
Samantha P
Dec 12, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I cannot cook to save my life. I know I'm not the only person out there in this boat, and I'm about to tell you why you should pick up this book!

First off, this book gives you the basics. It starts with a summary of the basics that a well stocked kitchen needs. I immediately realized that I lacked several things, and I think that is my only real complaint with the book. It sort of assumes that the reader can go out and pick up whatever they are missing. Some people with real jobs may be able to,
Feb 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: foods-and-drinks
Why I'm interested in this book at the first place..
I'm a fan of Sienfeld.The sitcom gives me life while growing up.Although I am by all means,not interested with Mr Seinfeld's personal lives,I got to know Mrs Seinfeld through a page of a tabloid magazine years back.
And now she has published cookbooks! Take a read,I must.

What do I think about this that I've done reading it..
Surprise,surprise...Can't Cook Book is a decent read.I'm impressed!

- colorful pictures :)
- simple instruction
heather Calamia
Feb 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
I have been cooking for years but heard this book had some great recipes in it. I certainly wasn't disappointed.
Penny McGill
Feb 19, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: cookbooks
We've had this book kicking around the book piles for a couple of weeks and we've not found anything that caught our fancy enough to try it. A patron @ work yesterday said she found the book to be 'too simple' and it might be that I agree with her on that point. The title of the book does give us good reason to find the recipes to be simple so we shouldn't really blame Jessica Seinfeld for it.

Aside from the simple recipes I found the accompanying stories to be pleasant enough. She had to say som
Oct 26, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: home-cook-life
I have tried several recipes and they turned out very well. The effort put in turns out great results. The recipes are simple yet tasty. This cook book will finally turn me into a good home cook. The book is written in a fun and encouraging manner. There are plenty of online resources that go along with the book to supplement the recipes. This book has been a real asset for me that I will treasure for many years to come.

Update: I've tried several recipes and they turned out very good. In additio
Jan 07, 2016 rated it really liked it
#1 thing that I like about this book is that every recipe I've tried so far actually tastes good.

I've been cooking for 15 years, and yet, regardless of my continued attempts, I find that my cooking has not improved. Enter this cookbook, and it's little extras (like, put the colander in the sink -- seriously, that's helpful for me) and I'm already feeling more confident in the kitchen. Two weeks ago, I tried to make coffee cake and it came out dry and not very tasty. Last night, I made the Berry
Oct 28, 2013 rated it really liked it
At first I was not sure you could go from never cooking (a "Can't Cook" as she calls you) to picking up this book and making it happen, but once you realize that she gives tips and confidence-builders and even links to video how-tos, you can definitely get there if you put in the effort. This cookbook has a FANTASTIC food photographer. Every page makes me drool. And these are recipes I would actually make. (Well maybe not the shrimp but that's just personal preference.) I checked it out from the ...more
Melissa Lee-Tammeus
Feb 21, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: borrowed
I love cookbooks that have pictures of all the food, so this book passes the test. It is also a great reminder to go back to the basics. I was reminded that french toast and peanut butter banana open faced sandwiches ARE awesome. However, for those of us who have been cooking and baking a long time, it is hard to appreciate the picture of a toaster with "Toaster" labeled underneath or the intense directions in how to chop an onion. But, for anyone just starting out, this is a fantastic way to le ...more
Marathon County Public Library
Oh, yes you can...cook, as the front cover says! This beginner's cookbook has a list of all the basic cooking gear needed to get started without fear. I love the "how-to" section for preparing many everyday items; it even tells you when to keep your fingers away from the knife. The cook book has recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, quickies, and my favorite, desserts. If you're a sweet potato fan like I am, try "Roasted Sweet Potato Coins" on page 167, guaranteed delicious!

Kitty R. / Marathon
Jul 14, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: cookbooks, read-in-14
Color me impressed. Which is a light pink shade.

I can't cook to save my life (I could potentially kill someone with my awesome cooking that only I can eat), so I was intrigued by this book. Less intrigued by the fact that these recipes are rather intricate.

But the recipes, even the ones I am not interested in, are really well laid out. The book starts with a lot of great prep tips, including basics like chopping onions and how to properly salt something (I suck at seasoning. I suck I suck I suck
Gina House
Jan 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Jerry Seinfeld's wife is a GENIUS! I initially bought this cookbook for my son to take with him to college, but I fell in love with it. The layout is lovely and all of the photographs are tantalizing. I've tried almost half of the recipes so far and have loved them. After over 20 years of cooking, I've become frustrated with it and this cookbook truly inspired me to try new meals for my family. At least 7 of the recipes have become weekly staples. The best aspect of this cookbook is that the rec ...more
May 29, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: cook-books
So I got this book from the library a few weeks ago. Looked through it a few times…dog eared a few recipes but only ended up making one. Freaky greek pasta. It was pretty good the night of, not so great as next day leftovers. This book has lots of good “technical” info in a simple to read fashion, love how it will lay flat on the counter and there are a lot of “looks delish” recipes. But there was nothing ground breaking, nothing that made me jump off the couch to cook. Maybe I’ll get it out aga ...more
Lady Lioness
If my living situation was different, I would totally buy this book for my cookbook shelf. I primarily do baking, but Seinfeld's book eases you into using vegetables and healthy crap for meals. The majority of the ingredients are commonly found within chain grocery stores, each dish generally serves between 2-4 people, and prep time is usually under 30 minutes.

While I haven't actually made any of these recipes, if you're already comfortable in the kitchen, I think these recipes will bridge the
Dec 30, 2013 rated it really liked it
For anyone who's never cooked before, I feel like this would be a useful starting point. The first part of the book does a nice job explaining the basics of kitchen tools/appliances/needs, outlining how to use basic culinary techniques, and such. Then, I really appreciated the simplicity of the tasty-sounding recipes. Even now that I've been cooking for a while, I still find myself turned off by recipes that are too in-depth - so it was refreshing to read through hers. They are approachable, rea ...more
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Jessica Seinfeld (nee Nina Danielle Sklar) is the wife of comedian Jerry Seinfeld and author of a cookbook for preparing food for children. She graduated from the University of Vermont, and worked in public relations for Golden Books Entertainment, as well as for Tommy Hilfiger.

In 2007, Seinfeld published the cookbook Deceptively Delicious, which contains strategies and recipes for making healthy