If you haven’t yet gotten your hands on a copy of Briana Thomas’ new cookbook, Necessary Food, it’s a must have if you enjoy low glycemic cooking. Briana was kind enough to send me a copy of her cookbook to review, and I am thrilled with what she’s created!
While I can’t really name the *exact* eating plans in this post that the cookbook works with, I’ll give you three guesses, and your last two don’t count. 🙂 But I can give you a hint: The recipes all work with one of MY favorite eating plans. 😉 If you want to know, you can ask me about specific plans in the comments.
All of the recipes are refined sugar free, and free of white flour…most are naturally gluten free. Briana went to great lengths to make the cookbook user friendly and gorgeous. It’s full color, and almost every recipe is pictured.
The hardbound covers are spiral bound, which allows you to open the book all the way out flat while using it. I sat and just drooled over her recipes for over an hour the night I got it in the mail. It’s like having a beautiful, bound copy of her entire blog right in your hands!
And speaking of recipes, there are LOADS of them in here. Each section is marked with a different color, so you can easily flip to the purple dessert section and land right on it every time. She also includes extensive indexing in the back to make it very simple to find the recipe that you want, even if you can’t remember the exact name.
Every section begins with a very helpful index page, so you can easily check out the entire lineup when you land in the breakfast section.
I also love that she’s created a landing page right on her website for future book updates or corrections, should the need arise. VERY helpful!
Easy Low Glycemic Fueling
Briana created a labeling system and each and every recipe is marked according to what type of fuel it is. Healthy Fats? Check. Healthy Carbs (lower fat)? Check! WIth five categories of fuel types, she’s got you covered if you are committed to separating fuels in your eating plan. And beyond just clearly labeling EVERY recipe in the book, she’s even included a WHOLE index sorted by fuel type. So you can put together a weekly menu straight from that section if you need inspiration!
Variety is the Spice of Life
Briana is from a Mennonite heritage, so she’s got an impressive lineup of really good food. Some of the recipes she shares are directly inspired by favorites within her community. Some of them are things I was not familiar with, but look very appealing…like the Amish Peanut Butter Spread (p.418) that I want to try out. Briana is also a southern girl like me, and obviously enjoys a variety of foods…it definitely shows up in this cookbook. You’ll find everything from the southern classic fried okra, to Thai inspired soups and back again. No matter what your taste, you won’t get bored or run out of ideas!
I also love that Necessary Food is at heart a family cookbook, with meals sized for families of 4-6, but she also features many single or double serving treats as well, making it a very versatile cookbook even for single or smaller families.
Notes and Quotes
One of my favorite features of the cookbook was the very helpful Ingredients and Baking Tips section in the front of the cookbook. Here, you’ll find lots of helpful and succinct tips and charts showing exactly what ingredients and brands Briana used to create her recipes, and many very helpful tips if you’re new to the world of low glycemic baking.
She also includes tips throughout the cookbook to help you get better results…which I love because I’m a tip junkie! 🙂 I really appreciate that Briana straight up tells you that she likes food on the less sweet side. That’s super helpful in knowing how to tweak when making her recipes fit for my family’s tastes.
And of course, I always offer my honest opinion of products I review, so I’m including the few things that I would tweak. Briana included a variety of quotes, proverbs, and Bible verses through the text. Some of them are cute, and others seem a little awkward for a cookbook or are in a hard to read font. There are also over a dozen recipes named after Briana, which tickles me…I half expected to find Briana Sausages in the book. As a blogger, I would have liked to have seen more “inspired by” credit given, but that’s just a courtesy preference on my part.
Where to Buy Necessary Food
I tried out Briana’s Blueberry Baked Oatmeal on page 31, and we all loved it. I doubled the recipe for a 9×18 pan, and had easy, heat and eat breakfasts all week long.
All in all, this is a GORGEOUS cookbook, and one I’m delighted to have in my collection. I’ll be referencing it often, and probably thumbing through it just for fun to enjoy her gorgeous photos. Thank you, Briana! Well done, girl!
You can find Necessary Food on Amazon (my affiliate link)
You can find out more about Necessary Food here, and order a copy of your own from Briana’s site if you don’t already have one. Necessary Food is very reasonably priced and she even offers some international distribution options.
Necessary food is a great quality cookbook that I’m going to enjoy for years to come!
If you already own a copy, please tell me below what your favorite recipe is…I can’t decide what to try next!