Cuisine Cookbook

10 Authentic Italian Restaurant Cookbooks & Recipe Books

If you are an Italian food gourmet, you must always desire to enjoy the most delicious Italian-spirited dishes cooked by experienced chefs with authentic recipes in Italian restaurants. Thinking of bringing the same flavor dishes home, some people argue that it is impossible while others have a strong belief in cooking them at home with the guide of cookbooks. Therefore, this article will introduce 10 Italian restaurant cookbooks to you. 

Felidia: Recipes from My Flagship Restaurant: A Cookbook

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“Lidia is our go to chef for all Italian recipes. If you have or have not visited her restaurant you will love this book. Great recipes and memoir. She shares details of her restaurant journey and the restaurant’s best dishes.” – Joan M. Crosby

Besides being a best-selling author, Lidia Bastianich is also the beloved chef of Felidia, a dining legend in New York City for almost four decades. Together with longtime Executive Chef Fortunato Nicotra, Lidia shares 115 recipes capturing the soul of the Felidia menu that has made the restaurant’s reputation from past to present.

From pasta and primi to appetizers and meats, bread and spreads to sides and soups, some individual favorite dishes easily adapted for home cooks so that they could re-create in their kitchen. 

In this book, readers will find both recipes for old-school classics such as Pasta Primavera and Linguine with White Clam Sauce and Broccoli and modern favorites, including Pear and Pecorino Ravioli, Chicken Pizzaiola, Short Ribs Braised in Barolo, and Eggplant Flan with Tomato Coulis. Finely detailed dessert recipes include Warm Nutella Flan, Open Cannolo, and Limoncello Tiramisù, while Passion Fruit Spritz and Frozen Peach Bellini are also mentioned.

With beautiful illustration, full-color photographs, Felidia takes readers behind the restaurant’s storied history and is filled with the same warmth and hospitality that are the hallmarks of all of Lidia’s cookbooks.

About the Author: Lidia Matticchio Bastianich is the author of fourteen previous cookbooks. She is the Emmy award-winning host of public television’s Lidia’s Kitchen that airs internationally and a judge on MasterChef Junior Italy and Italy’s highly rated daily program La Prova del Cuoco. She co-owns three restaurants in New York City, Felidia, Becco, and Esca, and gives lectures on Italian cuisine all over the country. 

Tanya Bastianich Manuali actively participated in the production of Lidia’s Public Television series as an owner and executive producer of Tavola Productions and ran daily activities in the family restaurant business. She supervises the creation and expansion of LIDIA’S food line together with her husband, Corrado. Also, she has co-authored several cookbooks with her mother, and one with her brother, Joe. 

Fortunato Nicotra has been the executive chef at Felidia since 1995.

Old Trieste Restaurant Cookbook: Gourmet, Old-World Italian Cookbook

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“What a fantastic cookbook! I’ve been longing for even just the fried zucchini recipe, but now I have them all. Can’t wait to cook the whole book. Yum” – L

Old Trieste Restaurant Cookbook is a timeless book filled with family recipes and history that made it famous for more than 55 years. With this guidebook, readers can learn to cook classic dishes from fine Italian cuisine such as Chicken Livers Trieste, Signature Lemon, and White Wine Fish, Veal Parmigiana, Filet Mignon Marsala, Scampi Trieste, Calamari Fritti, Lobster Fra Diavolo. Besides, all of the house-made sauces and salad dressings, classic cocktails, and the Signature Fried Zucchini are also instructed.

More than that also appeared in this cookbook is the list of food merchants that the restaurant used to serve dishes such as fresh Italian bread, fine meats and seafood, chocolate truffle cake, spumoni ice cream, and Tiramisu flew in from Italy!

About the Author: This book is created by the author Larry Tomicich and Family, editor Inc., Pique Publishing, and photographer Paula Luna.

Larry Tomicich is the son of Tommy Tomicich, the founder of Old Trieste Restaurant, and the name of the restaurant is named after his birthplace. In the spring of 2019, when the restaurant closed, Larry Tomicich compiled the restaurant’s old-world, gourmet, Italian recipes into this cookbook.

Massimo Bottura: Never Trust A Skinny Italian Chef

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“I love this book. It’s best read as an exploration of Massimo’s philosophy behind different tasting dinners and less an instructional manual on recreating dishes from his restaurant.” – A. Brown

Massimo Bottura is the longtime chef of three-Michelin star restaurant Osteria Francescana for twenty-five years. It is rated as Italy’s most celebrated restaurant, and the number one in the S. Pellegrino World’s 50 Best Restaurants Awards 2016. During Massimo’s career, Never Trust a Skinny Italian Chef is a tribute that contributes to the restaurant famous. 

At Osteria Francescana, chef Massimo Bottura (as featured on Netflix’s Chef’s Table) takes inspiration from contemporary art to create remarkably creative dishes that play with Italian culinary traditions.

Divided into four chapters, each one highlights a different period. Fifty recipes featured in the book are accompanied by texts explaining Bottura’s inspiration, ingredients, and techniques. Stefano Graziani and Carlo Benvenuto conduct photography demonstrations, 

About the Author: Massimo Bottura the valued as the leading figure in modern Italian gastronomy and works as the chief patron of Osteria Francescana, a three Michelin star restaurant based in Modena, Italy. Massimo grew up in Modena and develop an interest in cooking at a young age after watching his mother, grandmother, and aunt in the kitchen preparing family meals. In 1986, he dropped out of law program to open his first restaurant and subsequently nurtured his love for food with stages for Alain Ducasse at Louis XV in Monte Carlo and Ferran Adriá elbulli. He opened Osteria Francescana in 1995.

Ralph’s Italian Restaurant, 100 Years and 100 Recipes

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“I’ve eaten at this restaurant, and loved it. The book brings that home.” – T. Kilzer

Ralph’s Italian Restaurant, 100 Years & 100 Recipes is a book that brings you an inside look at how this South Philadelphia temple of fine cuisine came in to being. More than that, readers also have a chance to discover the 100-year-old Dispigno family recipes that have never been written down before for the first time.

There is no doubt about the famous Ralph’s Italian Restaurant has gained with the existence of 100 years already now. Some notable guests from politic Teddy Roosevelt to Frank Sinatra have all enjoyed Ralph’s food. This book will provide stories about the four generations of this close-knit family and how the restaurant has been their life. The best part is the book will reveal the secrets of what makes a meal at Ralph’s a truly unforgettable dining experience.

About the Author: Jimmy Rubino Jr is a native of South Philadelphia. Jimmy grew up in Ralph’s Restaurant and started working there from the age of six. After graduating from South Philadelphia High School, Rubino worked as a plumber for relative’s plumbing firm, but his career lasted only two years.

After that, he worked full-time at the restaurant and took a leadership role that has empowered Ralph to make sure that the family tradition would carry into the 21st Century. Rubino’s skills as a chef and his pleasant personality have been widely recognized in the news media, and he is a frequent guest on radio and TV. Jimmy and his wife Holly have two children and reside in suburban Bucks County, Pa. 

Ted Taylor is self-confirmed as an Italian due to marriage, which makes him qualified to work with Jimmy on this book. As the president of his own Public Relations and Marketing firm, Taylor joined Ralph’s as their press agent in 1999 and has worked with the restaurant on their year-long 100th-anniversary celebration.

Ted grew up in suburban Glenside and has been a baseball fan his entire life. He has written two books on baseball card collecting and has been a sports hobby journalist for The Philadelphia Daily News since 1991. Ted and Cindy live in suburban Philadelphia and have four children and four grandchildren.

The Barbuto Cookbook: California-Italian Cooking from the Beloved West Village Restaurant

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“Marked it as to-read” – Eric Dowdle

The Barbuto Cookbook is a culinary exploration of Barbuto’s menu, a unique mixture of rustic Italian and contemporary California cuisine from legendary chef Jonathan Waxman.

From time to time, there are very few New York City restaurants that can maintain their quality and attraction to the customer as same as Jonathan Waxman’s Barbuto did. Being recognized as the first time, the Barbuto Cookbook invites home cooks into the history, culture, and cuisine of the Greenwich Village dining spot that became both a neighborhood favorite and a New York culinary destination. 

In this book, Jonathan and with his team provide the essential tools for re-making Barbuto classics, including the famous JW roast chicken, the kale salad, specialty pizzas, gnocchi, spectacular desserts, and much more. Every recipe is a flavorful restaurant signature adapted for accessible preparation at home.

About the Author: Jonathan Waxman is the chef and owner at Barbuto in Manhattan’s West Village and Jams in 1 Hotel Central Park. He has made an appearance on two seasons of Top Chef Masters and is the author of two previous cookbooks. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and three children.

The North End Italian Cookbook, 6th: The Bestselling Classic Featuring Even More Authentic Family Recipes

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“The North End Italian Cookbook was highly recommended to me by a friend who happens to be Italian!!! She has an ancient edition! I ordered one for me and one for my daughter! Great recipes and the majority of ingredients are easily purchased in any local grocery store.” – Cheryl Z

When you think of Boston’s North End, you will see a place full of great food. Italian markets filled with strings of thick sausage, great wheels of cheese, seafood, dark chocolate, and fresh fruits line the streets. From the old to the young, the cooks of this Italian-American neighborhood have turned these beautiful ingredients into unforgettable meals.

For more than 30 years, Marguerite DiMino Buonopane, one of the North End’s most famous cooks, has published her secrets to creating this culinary tips in your kitchen.

Now she collects more than 275 of her tasty recipes attached with mouth-watering color photos. The result is a full-color, deluxe edition of a treasured cookbook classic welcomed by many readers.

About the Author: Marguerite DiMino Buonopane is the host of the legendary luncheons and former restaurant chef-owner at the old North End Union, a nonprofit community settlement house. While writing her book, she also taught cooking classes in Boston’s North End, where she has lived most of her life.

Rao’s Classics: More Than 140 Italian Favorites from the Legendary New York Restaurant

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“If you like Italian food and enjoy cooking, these are the books to own. Rao’s recipes are easy to understand and consist of easily-obtainable ingredients. The directions are very clear and written to be understood by the home cook” – Allen

Rao’s is the legendary, tiny corner restaurant in East Harlem where it’s impossible to book a table that always is reserved for a titan of New York industry, a celebrity, or a major politician. Frank Pellegrino is the third generation of his family to operate the impossible-to-get-into Rao’s restaurant and founder of Rao’s food products line.

When being responsible for running the restaurant, he goes deep into the history of his family, the restaurant, and America’s love affair with Southern Italian cooking to create Rao’s most prominent, best Italian cookbook yet.

There are 140 recipes included in this cookbook covering from Linguini Aglio Olio, Lobster Fra Diavolo, Eggplant Parmigiana, Margherita Pizza alla Rao’s, Veal Chops Paillard, Beef Braciola, Stuffed Italian Frying Peppers, Blood Orange, and Limoncello Panna Cotta.

About the Author: Frank Pellegrino Sr. was the owner and nightly host at the famous Rao’s Restaurant in New York. He was born and brought up in East Harlem. In 1992, Frank established Rao’s Specialty Foods to produce and sell the highest quality gourmet products. Before Rao’s Classics, Frank Pellegrino Sr. ever wrote two of his previous books The Rao’s Cookbook and Rao’s Recipes from the Neighborhood. Frank Pellegrino Sr. passed away in 2017.

Frank Pellegrino Jr. is a co-owner of Rao’s restaurant franchise and the author of Rao’s cookbook, Rao’s Recipes from the Neighborhood, and Rao’s On the Grill. He is also an actor who characterized FBI agent Frank Cubitoso in HBO’s The Sopranos. Pellegrino is the founder and CEO of Rao’s Specialty Foods, Inc. He lives in Long Island.

Dinner at the Club: 100 Years of Stories and Recipes from South Philly’s Palizzi Social Club

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“The book is beautifully written and photographed and will not only be a cherished part of our library, but it is also a great gift, especially for those who’ve enjoyed some of Joel’s signature dishes and those who’ve longed to enjoy them.” – Brian & Amy Whilldin

South Philly’s Palizzi Social Club has been prized a hard-to-get reservation restaurant by restaurant-goers. Still, it seems that a table limited to members only becomes the unique feature of this restaurant. Though it has 100 years old now, the golden period of this restaurant just flourished after chef Joey Baldino took over from his late uncle Ernie.

Palizzi has apprenticed the balance of outmoded Italian kitsch and super-high-quality food and cocktails. Palizzi Social Club was once a place for a gathering of the Abruzzi-American community. In 2017, Palizzi ranked Bon Appetit’s #4 Best New Restaurant, Esquire’s honorable mention best new restaurant, and Eater Philly’s #1 restaurant of the year.

Chef Joey’s menu at Palizzi covers a broad Southern Italian scope, and seventy adaptable, straightforward recipes are printed in this cookbook. These include Fennel and Orange Salad, Arancini with Ragu and Peas, Spaghetti with Crabs, Stromboli, Hazelnut Torrone.

About the Author: Joey Baldino is a chef and restaurant owner known for his deeply traditional Italian cooking. All Sicilian BYOB Zeppoli in Collingswood, NJ, and Palizzi Social Club belong to his ownership. Before opening Zeppoli, he sharpens his culinary skills as chef de cuisine at Vetri, sous chef for the opening of Osteria, and in the kitchens of other top Philadelphia chefs Georges Perrier, Michael Solomonov, and Jose Garces. Today, he lives just blocks from Palizzi Social Club, carrying on his family’s South Philly heritage of good food and authentic hospitality.

Lidia’s Favorite Recipes: 100 Foolproof Italian Dishes, from Basic Sauces to Irresistible Entrees: A Cookbook

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“A excellent cookbook and ideal introduction to Lydia’s cuisine, featuring user friendly recipes for both the beginning and experienced cook. It includes a balanced range of Lydia’s recipes, from spaghetti and meatballs to roast pork to her superb version of Cioppino. The recipes are extraordinarily accurate.” – Paris Lover

In Lidia’s Favorite Recipes, you’ll find a fresh take on more than 100 of Lidia’s signature and irresistibly reliable dishes such as Fried Mozzarella Skewers, Escarole, and White Bean Soup, Limoncello Tiramisù or many many other more. 

From classic sauces to delicious desserts, these recipes have been fine-tuned and updated to be more concise and clear, but just as soul-satisfying as ever. With new information about the affordability, seasonality, and nutritional amount of the ingredients, there is no doubt about why these dishes are the most comfortable and most enjoyable to bring to the family table. Colorfully illustrated with lively photos, both beginner and longtime fans can find something new to celebrate from Lidia’s Favorite Recipes.

About the Author: Lidia Matticchio Bastianich is the author of numerous cookbooks and five of which have been accompanied by nationally syndicated public television series. She is the owner of the New York City restaurant Felidia, among others, and she gives lectures on Italian cuisine throughout the country. She lives on Long Island, New York.

Tanya Bastianich Manuali received her Ph.D. in Renaissance art history from Oxford University. In 1996, she started Esperienze Italiane, a travel company that arranges food, wine, and art tours to Italy. She co-authors several cookbooks with her mother, Lidia, and responsible for many other tasks. She is the manager of Lidia’s product line and serves as the cultural and art consultant for the art series. She lives on Long Island, New York.

Rao’s Cookbook: Over 100 Years of Italian Home Cooking

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“A huge collection of some recipes from an American Italian restaurant institution. Beautiful hardcover book covering all sorts of Italian recipes, from starters and salads to pasta and main course meat dishes. Great buy if you cook.” – Mac

Rao’s, the hundred-year-old restaurant with only ten tables placed in a tiny corner of East Harlem which was once a legendary Italian neighborhood and is the restaurant most people want to explore among others in Manhattan. The New York Times calls the dishes here “exquisitely simple Italian cooking” from traditional recipes, and its tables are booked months in advance by gourmet. 

You may not get a table at Rao’s, but you can prepare the best Italian home-style food in your kitchen with this book. For the first time, recipes for all of Rao’s fantastic classics are shared like its famous marinara sauce, seafood salad, roasted peppers with pine nuts and raisins, baked clams, lemon chicken, chicken scarpariello, and on and on. Photographs accompany all the recipes.

About the Author: Nicholas Pileggi is known as an American author, producer, and screenwriter. In this book, Nicholas Pileggi and a Preface by Dick Schaap tell a brief history of the restaurant. Both will prove that what you have in your hands is a national treasure, a piece of history, and a collection of the best Italian American recipes you will ever find.

We hope you like this post and finally find out your favorite Italian restaurant cookbooks. Meanwhile, we welcome you to explore our site and discover more cookbook recommendations from the same cuisine below.

Doris Frasier

Hi. I'm Doris! I am a foodie that has traveled to 78 countries and loves trying cuisines from different countries. I try anything related to food and share my opinions on this blog. Send me a message with any requests!
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