Finding Cookbooks for Less

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– Today’s Frugal Friday is brought to you by Lynn from Lynn’s Kitchen Adventures

I love to collect cookbooks and I have quite a collection. Some of my cookbooks I have purchased new, some have been given to me as gifts, but many of my cookbooks are ones that I have purchased used. In fact, some of my most used cookbooks are ones that I purchased for only a dollar or two.

My favorite places to find used cookbooks are garage sales, thrift stores, library sales, and used book sales.

I have been the most successful at used book sales. There are several in my area, and I often find books for fifty cents to dollar and magazines for ten cents each. I recently went to a used book sale and came away with all of this for thirteen dollars!

See that large book in the middle? That is a very large old Gourmet magazine cookbook that I paid one dollar for. It was worth going to the sale for that book alone.

Paperbackswap is also a great way to find used books.

  1. Be patient. These are just a few I have found on Paperbackswap. Yes, you can find even Martha Stewart books this way. Now, I did not find these right away. I put them on my wish list and was patient, but Martha Stewart cookbooks are worth the wait in my opinion.
  2. Consider older books. One tip that I have for finding used cookbooks is not overlook the old ones. Some of my favorite cookbooks are over ten years old.
  3. Don’t think they have to be famous to be good. Good cookbooks also do not have to be authored by a popular chef or TV star. Many older cookbooks are authored by people you may not recognize, but that does not mean that it is a bad cookbook. Many of them are worth adding to your collection. In fact they might just become some of your favorite cookbooks to use.

What is your favorite why to find cookbooks inexpensively?

— Lynn loves to cook and try new recipes. She lives in Oklahoma on 43 acres with her husband and three children. She blogs at Lynn’s Kitchen Adventures, sharing recipes, tips, and ideas to help you me blend a love of cooking with a busy life. She also blogs at Lynn’s Recipe Adventures where she writes about the challenges of food allergies.

What do YOU do to save money?

Share your favorite money-saving ideas today. Leave a link to a post that shares some frugal wisdom. (Please no giveaways or deals posts. Teach us how to fish!)

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  1. I use to collect cookbooks and then I moved several times in a short period and had to get rid of many of them! I still regret getting rid of my cookbooks. Hopefully one day when we settle down I can start collecting again. 🙂

  2. I was so happy the day I found Once-a-Week Cooking at the thrift store for 95 cents! Such a treat since I had been using my mom’s copy and knew it was about time to give it back 🙂

  3. I love old cookbooks, but I’m having to keep my habit in check these days because we live in a tiny apartment in NYC. This week I’m sharing a simple recipe for baked chicken – a delicious affordable dish and it offers several meals.

  4. I LOVE cookbooks! I got a bunch of them as gifts when I got married 4 years ago. However, now days, I find that I use the internet so often when I want a recipe. I rarely ever use my cookbooks, except as eye-candy.
    I did give a bunch of them away to friends and family…I probably should get rid of them all {but I can’t justify that yet!}

  5. Actually those Cuisine at Home magazines you picked up are what made that trip worthwhile. I don’t know if you are familiar with That mag but it is the best ever. Every recipe has a picture and everything is delicious. It’s the only cooking guide I trust 100 percent.

  6. I have quite a collection of cookbooks due to a cookbook-obsession a few years ago. Then I realized that I get most of my recipes online, anyway, so now I force myself to pass them up when I see them in the stores (although I LOVE looking at them!)

  7. I’m in a local moms club that has a book swap once or twice a year- an awesome way to reuse, save, and have fun! Today, I’m headed to a consignment sale- never know what books you’ll find at those. I AM planning to find the kids winter clothing… be sure to see my link above for ways to save money on kids clothing!

  8. I used to collect cookbooks, but after moving a few times, had to downsize the collection. These days, I check out a stack of cookbooks at the library. If there is one I really like, THEN I go buy it. Its fun to sort through a pile of cookbooks, and it feels like Christmas to sit down with a big stack. Its guilt free, frugal, and I have found some great recipes that would have been overlooked.

  9. I try not to buy a lot of book because they take up so much room- you can check out cookbooks from the library- they have lots! Also I buy used books on

  10. I love going to the library and checking out cookbooks – there’s rows and rows of shelves of them. I rotate, and I copy any recipes I really enjoy.

  11. I have the more recent version of the Laurel’s Kitchen Bread Book and I LOVE it. Love. There are so many tips on how to fit bread making into your life as well as how to trouble shoot and what to do with your disasters. For years I made all our bread and I’m just getting back into it after a year off. I’m a little rusty but my family is patient.

    I’d be curious to hear what you think of it. Especially since I always have to add a lot more flour than their recipes call for and I’ve hypothesized it could be what’s available in flour and/or the humidity difference in this part of the country. Or I’m just incompetent. 🙂

  12. I love the Cooks Illustrated magazines that you have in your picture. They are a great resource, and I find them so interesting to learn about all the science behind the foods. My only problem- I always want to make all the yummy desserts they have in them!

  13. I have just started taking an interest in cookbooks and have found our local thrift store to be a wonderful resource. I keep a running list of books and cookbooks that I would like to add to our collection to keep me focused. It would be too easy to bring home a trunk full. 🙂