This year brought us loads of new cookbooks full of fresh recipes to try out. While some of the recipes in the new 2022 cookbooks were as nourishing as they were delicious, many of the other recipes in these texts were so shockingly unhealthy that experts questioned whether they were worth cooking. Dietitians from the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, a non-profit organization made up of more than 17,000 physicians, recently studied some of Amazon’s most popular cookbooks. After careful review, registered dietitians on this committee chose what they considered to be this year’s unhealthiest cookbook recipes, compiling them in a report titled The worst recipes from Amazon’s best celebrity and restaurant cookbooks.
“Most of these cookbooks not only send the wrong message, but the exact opposite message, about what families should be eating,” Stephanie McBurnett, a dietitian with the Physicians Committee, said in the report.
Many of these recipes are extremely high in saturated fat, cholesterol and added sugars, which are known to contribute to heart disease and other serious illnesses. In addition, this report notes that the committee had hoped to see more plant-based recipes, but instead saw large amounts of meat and cheese everywhere.
Read on to find out what the committee selected and identified as the five worst recipes from Amazon’s best restaurant and celebrity cookbooks in 2022. Maybe 2023 will be a better year when it comes to healthy recipes in popular cookbooks – if you’re eager to find out which cookbooks will appear in 2023, be sure to check out 10 new cookbooks that we can’t wait to put on our (oven) gloves in 2023.
The Overnight Mac&Cheese from Go-To-Dinners: A Barefoot Contessa Cookbook by Ina Garten
Ina Garten is probably as well known for her warm, comforting demeanor as she is for her cooking skills. Garten is an expert chef who has been entertaining and educating viewers on the Food Network for decades. He has released a new cookbook called Go-To Dinners: A Barefoot Contessa Cookbook. The goal of her new book is to make cooking dinner a seamless process that takes little effort during busy weeks. However, the Doctors’ Committee is concerned about her recipe for Overnight Mac&Cheese.
According to the report, this mac & cheese recipe contains 1,800 calories and 88 grams of saturated fat. To understand why these numbers are concerning, the American Heart Association recommends about 13 grams of saturated fat per day for a heart-healthy diet.
Sign up for our newsletter!
Spinach and Pesto Stuffed Butternut Squash from Harvest half-baked every day: recipes for balanced, flexible, feel-good meals by Tieghan Gerard
America fell in love with Tieghan Gerard because of her blog about creative cooking and low-key eating, Half Baked Harvest, which she started in 2012. Since then, Gerard has been a New York Times best-selling author and has been featured on the Food Network, HGTV, and the Cooking Channel.
Gerard’s third and final cookbook, Half-baked harvest every day, was highly anticipated by fans and already has a rating of 4.8 stars on Amazon. However, one of the book’s recipes, the Spinach and Pesto Stuffed Butternut Squash, is one the doctors’ committee warns readers about.
According to their report, while this recipe sounds healthy, it’s loaded with three different types of dairy and 22 grams of saturated fat. Recent research from the Journal of Clinical Lipidologydiets higher in saturated fat may contribute to a higher risk of cardiovascular disease.
Braciole al Latte van Via Carota: A Celebration of Seasonal Dishes from the Beloved Greenwich Village Restaurant: An Italian Cookbook by Anna Kovel, Jody Williams and Rita Sodi
If you haven’t been to New York City’s Via Carota yet, it’s probably because you just haven’t been able to make a reservation. This small Italian restaurant in Greenwich Village has nearly 85,000 followers on Instagram and is one of the top spots for celebrity sightings in the city.
Needless to say, after the restaurant’s cookbook came out in October ’22, it caused quite a stir. But despite the 4.4 rating on Amazon, there’s one recipe in this book that the Doctors’ Committee disapproves of the most. According to their report, the Braciole al Latte—which literally translates to “milk chops” in Italian, referring to pork stewed in milk—contains an entire cup of lard and 1 1/2 cups of milk. This brings the nutritional value to over 800 calories 72 grams of fat, which is comparable to an Army’s Ham & Swiss Melt, according to the report.
RELATED: How This Cookbook Can Help You Live a Longer Life
Black Bottom Cranberry Tart from Preppy Kitchen: Recipes for Seasonal Dishes and Simple Pleasures (A Cookbook) by John Kanel
John Kanell’s background is unique in that he taught math and science to high school students for over a decade. A few years ago, Kanell decided to combine his classroom experience with his love of food and the lessons he learned while cooking with his mother to create Preppy Kitchen. Kanell’s mother is Mexican and his father is Greek, so he says he grew up with a combination of Mexican, Greek, American and even French cuisine. Now he helps people feel confident and prepared in the kitchen.
While his book has already earned 4.7 out of 5 stars on Amazon since its initial release in October, it includes one recipe for a Black Bottom Cranberry Tart that the doctors’ committee agreed was one of the more unhealthy recipes this year came out. The report explains that while you can enjoy some fresh cranberries with this recipe, it still contains 14 tablespoons of butter, 1/4 cup of heavy whipping cream, five egg yolks, and two eggs. A dietitian on the committee explained that she had hoped to make this recipe plant-based, but the heavy use of eggs and dairy made it difficult.
Day-Ahead Lawyer of Celebrate with Babs: Holiday Recipes and Family Traditions by Barbara Costello
Barbara Costello has been making waves on TikTok as @brunchwithbabs, aka “everyone’s grandmother.” The 73-year-old grandmother of eight started making videos on TikTok when she retired, and now her cookbook is one of the best-selling books on Amazon.
While this book can be a great source of inspiration for your holiday cooking adventures, the Physicians Committee warns that Babs’ Day-Ahead Eggnog is packed with extra calories and fat. Each drink has 543 calories and 43 grams of fat, according to the report. For one drink, which you might have two or three of, this is a hefty dose of calories from fat!