With spiced roasted vegetables, succulent lamb tagines, fluffy couscous and fragrant salads, the Moroccan cuisine is hearty, healthy and bursting with flavour. Whether you're a lover of the region's recipes or you just want to broaden your culinary horizons, burying yourself in a Moroccan cookbook is one of the best ways to explore this delicious cuisine.
To help you decide which to buy, we've scoured the online bookshelves of Amazon and eBay to bring you the best traditional and modern Moroccan recipe books the UK has to offer. Read on for our detailed buying guide to find out how to choose between them to ensure you end up with a well-used, well-loved book that isn't left collecting dust on the shelves!
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Table of Contents
When it comes to buying recipe books, you want to ensure that you pick one that you'll go back to time and time again. This buying guide will go through all the elements of the buying process, including experience levels and diets, to ensure that you leave with your new favourite.
The first thing you need to consider when shopping is whether or not the cookbook specifically caters to your diet. You don't want to have it arrive, only to flick through the pages and realise that you can't even eat half of the meals!
Traditional Moroccan food can be pretty heavy on the meat, but there are also many delicious vegetarian dishes out there too. If you're a vegetarian, though, we'd recommend going for a title that is entirely meat-free as a standard Moroccan cookbook will include a fair amount of meat.
Vegan meals can be even harder to find in Morocco, so getting a vegan-based Moroccan cookbook could be tricky, but not impossible. However, if you're on a gluten-free diet, you're in luck as many tagines are totally free from gluten, so you can easily focus your search around tagine cookbooks!
Recipe books differ immensely, and when you're excited about exploring a new cuisine, the last thing you want is to be put off cooking because the recipes are either too hard or too boring. It's essential that you choose a cookbook that suits your level of cooking.
Unfortunately, most cookbooks don't tend to state whether they're for beginners or experts, but a key indicator to look out for when browsing the online shelves is the number of recipes. A book that boasts over 200 recipes will probably be a bit overwhelming for a beginner, but if you've been cooking for years and are looking to branch out, the more, the merrier!
Moroccan food consists of a lot of tagines which are essentially stews cooked and served in a clay pot, but they also love utilising the humble couscous in lighter dishes. When shopping for a recipe book, you want to make sure that it caters to your style.
For instance, if you've got a bit of a sweet tooth, make sure your cookbook contains an extensive section on desserts. However, if you're hoping to bash out a full spread of dishes for dinner parties, pick a book that has multi-course meals or lots of small plates that you can serve together.
Photos of dishes are excellent in a recipe book, especially if you're not that familiar with the cuisine. They give you something to aim for presentation-wise and help you identify if your finished product is anything like it should be!
By no means is it a be-all-and-end-all, but photos definitely help beginner cooks and people new to Moroccan food. That said, if you're more of a 'throw things together and see how it turns out' kind of chef, you probably don't need images and can just work with a simple list of ingredients and a method. Choose what works best for your cooking style.
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The Food of Morocco
A Hefty Book Packed With Reliable, Traditional Recipes
Tagines and Couscous
A Curation of the Best Tagine Recipes in the Region
The Modern Tagine Cookbook
Perfect the Moroccan One-Pot With 60+ Recipes
Mourad: New Moroccan
Part Childhood Memoire, Part Moroccan Cookbook
Couscous and Other Good Food From Morocco
A Blend of Couscous, Recipes and History
Take a Culinary Food Tour of Morocco
Vegetarian Tagines & Couscous
A Vegetarian Coffee Table Cookbook
Cooking at the Kasbah
Learn to Cook Moroccan With Time-Saving Tips
A Month in Marrakesh
Aimed at Beginners and With Detailed Descriptions
Moroccan Vegan Cookbook
A Rare Find of a Vegan Moroccan Cookbook
Our number one pick is well-known for being one of the best Moroccan cookbooks out there. Containing 528 pages accompanied by beautiful full-colour photographs, it's a hefty read written by an expert with over 40 years of Mediterranean cooking experience.
The book explains all the dishes, methods and ingredients in great detail and includes sections on food preparation, techniques and background info on key ingredients like Argan oil and saffron. The recipes are reliable, traditional and everything you'd expect from a Moroccan cookbook, hence it's our top buy!
Here's another tagine book, because who doesn't love a one-pot recipe? They're easy to prep, simple to cook and minimise the washing up! This recipe book, written by food writer and restaurant critic Ghillie Basan curates some of the best one-pot recipes in the region.
These include everything from traditional fragrant lamb tagines studded with dates and almonds to modern flavours such as aubergine, coriander and mint. We particularly love that this book also contains advice on how to complete your Moroccan meal by including various suggestions of side dishes such as couscous, salads and veg.
We're sure you realise by now that one of the main things you need to learn if you want to dive into Moroccan cooking is perfecting the tagine, and this book aims to teach you exactly that! Including over 60 recipes for one-pot meals, there's more than enough to get you going.
The book includes a considerable variety of recipes, from the traditional lamb and vegetable stews to modern takes such as duck tagine with cinnamon and pears – delicious! This is the perfect cookbook if you've already taken on a few tagines and want to expand your repertoire of recipes and try out bold, new flavours.
This is an excellent choice of cookbook if you're after something really authentic but with a little more edge than the traditional meaty tagines and couscous. Written by a born and raised Moroccan who grew up in the bustling capital of Marrakesh but who now owns a Michelin star restaurant, you get what you expect here – delicious, authentic meals with a creative twist.
The book includes over 100 recipes with lots of images, and the methods are extremely detailed to ensure that anyone's able to follow. The book is also woven with stories of the author's childhood spent cooking with his family and includes the history and development of some of the main dishes.
Next up, we have another book that blends history and Moroccan food culture with recipes. Sections such as visiting the markets are woven throughout the book, breaking up the delicious recipes that go alongside the stories. It may be a few decades old, but classics don't age.
While couscous is in the title, and the book does contain multiple varieties of this versatile dish, it also includes other popular meals. Some of the most well-known are pastilla, basteeyas, and, of course, no Moroccan cookbook would be without a section on tagines!
With 5 stars on Amazon, this is a very well-loved book, and it's not hard to see why. It contains every course you could want from bread and savoury pastries to soups, street food, salads, sweets and the classic couscous and meat dishes.
Being an excellent photographer, the author has also included stunning photos of both the dishes and Morocco, capturing the essence of the country with swaying palm trees and bustling markets. While this is a cookbook, it doesn't flip through recipe after recipe like you'd expect. This is a more culinary tour of Morocco filled with stories and cultural annotations dotted with sumptuous meals.
While this book only contains 65 recipes, they're all fit for a vegetarian diet – which is quite a rare find in Moroccan cooking! The book includes a wide range of tagines from the classic heavy stews to lighter varieties such as cherry tomato and feta.
The only major downside is that this is more of a coffee-table book rather than a working cookbook. While attractive, the recipes and methods are printed on a dark background with white writing, which some reviewers noted is a little challenging to read while cooking.
Here we have a cookbook that provides more than just recipes. Woven throughout the book are tidbits of details on life in Morocco and stories that paint the perfect picture of this exotic country.
Containing over 100 recipes, you'll get to try your hand at authentic Moroccan meals like lamb tagines, buttermilk chicken kebabs and delicious flaky pastries. The recipes are straightforward, easy to follow and contain lots of helpful time-saving tips, however, some have noted that the recipes don't taste quite authentic enough if you're after the real deal.
Next up, we have this fantastic book that is aimed at the complete beginner cook. It contains a whole range of delicious traditional recipes like authentic salads and tagines but also a variety of modern dishes, such as a Moroccan take on steak and chips. It also provides information on how to make staples like harissa and preserved lemons.
We particularly love the supplementary information at the back that includes detailed descriptions of local spices, so you can really get to know the authentic flavours of Morocco. Unfortunately, there are no cooking or prep times throughout the entire book, which would be really useful for someone giving cooking a first time go.
We're starting off our countdown with the Moroccan Vegan Cookbook by Nina Recipes. As you now know, vegan cooking in Morocco is pretty sparse, so much so that there isn't a lot of choice out there when it comes to cookbooks that cater for this diet.
This option comes in both Kindle and paperback and contains 34 traditional vegetable-based recipes, including the classic tagine and a variety of couscous dishes. However, the book is pretty basic and there are only 34 recipes, so you might find yourself working through them fairly quickly. The lack of reviews also makes us a little bit wary!
If you're just getting into cooking or you're looking to expand your culinary horizons, there's no better way to do so than with a new recipe book. Whether you love Indian food, you want to try your hand at authentic Italian dishes or you'd like to give sushi a go, we've got plenty of articles detailing the best cookbooks that money can buy.
So there you have it! Our comprehensive guide to the best Moroccan cookbooks in town. Now, fire up the hob, invite some people over and cook up a storm of some of the tastiest, spiciest, most fragrant meals you'll ever eat.
Author: Roxy Pratley
No. 1：Paula Wolfert｜The Food of Morocco
No. 2：Ghillie Basan｜Tagines and Couscous
No. 3：Ghillie Basan｜The Modern Tagine Cookbook
No. 4：Mourad Lahlou｜Mourad: New Moroccan
No. 5：Paula Wolfert｜Couscous and Other Good Food From Morocco
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