I’ve jumped on the bandwagon. I’m in love with Chip & Jo and her Magnolia Table cookbook.
I almost hate to admit it but I wasn’t a Gaines fan until recently. HGTV wasn’t (and still isn’t) really my thing and now we don’t even have satellite TV so I’ve only seen bits and pieces of Fixer Upper over the years.
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I didn’t become a fan until my mom started subscribing to the Magnolia Journal magazine and shared them with me after she was done reading them. Then I received the Magnolia Table cookbook as a gift and now I’m just as big of a fan as the next Little Miss Suzy Homemaker, farmhouse loving, home cooking mama.
I love this cookbook so much and I don’t think your kitchen should be without it.
5 Reasons Why You Need the Magnolia Table Cookbook
#1 It’s Beautiful
Let’s start with the obvious reason why you need this cookbook. It’s just so gosh darn beautiful.
From the cover design and photography to the layout and recipe instruction. It’s all so simple and practical. It’s rustic yet elegant.
It’s one of those cookbooks you’ll want to put out on display as kitchen decor rather than tucking it away in a kitchen cupboard. Don’t worry Ree, your cookbooks are still front and center in my kitchen too.
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Not only is the Magnolia Table beautiful, it’s durable too. I feel like it will hold together well even after hanging out alongside messy floured counter tops and sauce splattered stove tops dozens and dozens of times throughout the years.
#2 Recipes You Actually Want to Eat
Do you ever browse through a cookbook or food magazine and realize you didn’t find a whole lot of recipes you would actually make or ones that your family would actually eat? Maybe that’s just me and my situation with the picky eater Farmer.
That’s not the case with this cookbook.
I would love just about every single recipe included in the Magnolia Table cookbook and I think The Farmer would even tolerate a good deal of them too! I can’t wait to try the Beef Stew and Party Queso! And Mina’s Lemon Bars! Oh, and Becki’s Mac & Cheese! You know a cookbook is gonna be good when there’s a recipe for homemade mac and cheese.
Boy, this is making me hungry.
If you have meat and potatoes, hearty breakfast, dessert loving eaters in your house like I do, you need this cookbook in your kitchen.
#3 It’s Not Just a Cookbook
It’s a storybook too.
Jo shares personal memories and stories about many of the recipes she’s loved since her childhood and those that her own children have grown to love as well. She shares stories about her family traditions as they relate to food and what her kids enjoy as after school snacks.
I especially love her story behind her recipe for Syrian Donuts.
#4 Versatile Recipes
Not only do the recipes easily allow for substitutions and variations, Jo encourages it! In the introduction she shares,
Similar to my design philosophy about making your space uniquely yours, I want you to feel inspired to personalize these recipes and adjust them as you need for your family’s tastes. If you don’t like onions, take them out! If you love mushrooms, add more…I encourage you to switch it up more often than not. There are no gospel truths on these pages. I’m not a professional chef. I’m just a busy, working mama who loves to cook and share recipes. – Joanna Gains
That’s my kinda girl. And those are my kinda recipes!
Take her Country Potato Soup with Crumbled Bacon for example. This was the first recipe I made from the cookbook. I didn’t have celery, so I left it out. I didn’t have a bay leaf, so I used dried parsley instead. I halved the recipe so better accommodate my family of two adults and one little toddler. After simmering on the stove top and mixing in some shredded cheddar cheese, it was a glorious, silky, chowder-like texture. Next time, I think I’ll add a cup of frozen corn too.
See, Joanna. I’m doing just like you suggested. I’m personalizing as needed. Can we be friends now?
#5 Leftovers Are Encouraged
You know how much I love leftovers. Not only does she provide freezer instructions for several of the recipes in the cookbook, she also includes suggested storage dates at the end of each recipe, suggesting the many of them are just as good reheated for lunch the next day.
The Lunch section includes several recipes, like her 1919 Pimiento Cheese and Curry Chicken Salad, that she’ll prep in advance to have on hand for the entire week too! #mealprep
Cook once, eat twice. Once again, my kinda recipes!
If you have the Magnolia Table cookbook, I’m sure you love it as much as I do. If you don’t already have it, you need to get it now! If you know a friend who doesn’t have it, do them a favor and gift them a copy. We all need a Magnolia Table in our home.
Do you have the Magnolia Table cookbook? Do you love the magazines? What’s your favorite Chip & Jo show, publication or creation?