Cuisine Cookbook

10 Best Southern Italian Cookbooks To Discover The Secrets Of Authentic Southern Italian Cooking!

Both Northern and Southern foods contribute to the soul of Italian cuisine. While Northern mostly run on creamy cream sauces and butter, Southern make the most of tangy tomato sauces, olive oil, and steamed seafood. Southern Italian cooking features the bright, lively Mediterranean taste that most people associate with Italian cuisine. Therefore, this post will introduce to you 10 Southern Italian Cookbooks.

Food of the Italian South: Recipes for Classic, Disappearing, and Lost Dishes: A Cookbook

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“This book is filled with traditional and interesting food and drink from off the beaten path in southern Italy. A must-read.” – David Marcelli

Great cookbooks show us how to make beautiful dishes, but the very best share something more. The food of the Italian South is precisely that. Through 85 authentic recipes and 100 impressive photographs, the book describes the cultural and cooking traditions of the Italian South, from the mountains to the coast.

In most cultures, exploring food means exploring history, and the Italian South has plenty of both to offer. Stories of how dishes came are told, and the taste of stories enriches both the act of reading and eating.

Parla shares both original and reimagined recipes along with historical and cultural that sum up in those are the miles of beaches, sheep-dotted mountains, quiet towns, and each unique precious specialty.  

About the Author: Katie Parla is a New Jersey native, but she works as a Rome-based food and beverage journalist, culinary guide, and educator. She is the author of, which receive the Saveur Award-winning food and travel site. More than that, she also composes the ebook Eating & Drinking in Rome and more than twenty travel guides.

Her co-author Tasting Rome (2016), won the IACP Award for the best international cookbook. Many Katie’s travel writing, recipes, and food criticism are chosen to post in the New York Times, Food & Wine, Saveur, Australian Gourmet Traveller, the Guardian, Condé Nast Traveler, Punch, Eater, and so on. 

My Calabria: Rustic Family Cooking from Italy’s Undiscovered South

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“Regional Cooking at its Finest.” – Angela M. Mogin

Calabria is a beautiful, mountainous region located at the end of Italy. Fishers and small farmers populate this area. In this rocky landscapes, Rosetta Costantino grew up in a family with a shepherd father and winemaker mother.

When her family moved to California, they created a small Calabria on their house by planting eggplant, tomatoes, and peppers and cooking. Fresh ricotta is made from scratch, and pasta is all handmade. Calabrians are experts at preserving by transforming fresh figs into jam, canning fresh tuna in oil, and sun-drying peppers for the winter. 

Now in the first cookbook of a little-known region of Italy, My Calabria, Rosetta shares the story of her family and opens the world of pure Calabrian food to the readers. People will find the celebration of the region’s landscape richness and the charm of its cuisine. Within 100 color photos and enormous recipes about all of the outstanding South dishes, this cookbook shows us how creative and resourceful cooks can create a superb cuisine.

About the Author: Rosetta Costantino was born and brought up in Verbicaro, Calabria, Italy. Later on, Rosetta Costantino writes cookbooks and teaches cooking classes in Oakland, California. She also organizes Culinary Tours that could be signed up on her website

Janet Fletcher, a reporter for the San Francisco Chronicle, is the author of numerous books about food and wine. She lives in Napa Valley.

Southern Italian Family Cooking: Simple, healthy and affordable food from Italy’s cucina povera

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“Real Southern Italian family food.” – BDM

Cucina Povera is a style of Italy’s cooking that makes great food with simple, fresh, seasonal produce and available ingredients. You will find out how to bring this region’s tasty food to your family’s table in Southern Italian Family Cooking.

Healthy food on a reasonable budget is necessary to many of us nowadays, but in Southern Italy, the term la cucina povera or “cooking of poor” has been a philosophy handed down for generations. There are great delicious recipes that become will family cherishes such as Antipasti, slow-cooked meals such as ragu, stuffed peppers, pork Colette, mussels in a tomato and white wine sauce and a range of fabulous desserts. 

This book is not just about the food but also about the whole spirit of Italian family life. The book shows you how to be creative from what you have and gives you an incredibly healthy way to live and enjoy food with family and friends.

About the Author: Carmela Sophia Sereno is Italy native and her mother and grandma have a significant influence on the recipes in this book. However, she always brings her own flavor character into all of them. Before having enough courage to pursue a passion for food, she worked as an estate agent and health practitioner.

At first, Carmela launched her cookery school and her business Carmela’s Kitchen under the form of a radio slot teaching from her family kitchen. Gradually, the business blossomed and grew so big that it offered large-scale demonstrations, events, radio shows, individual private tuition, consultancy, children’s cookery classes, and a guest cookery teacher at various locations.

Southern Italian Cooking: Simple Classic Recipes (Regional Italian Cooking Book 3)

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“My family lived in Southern Italy for 3 years and this is the food they spoke of most. The Bruschetta, Calamari Fritti, Carbonara, roasted vegetables, and of course, pasta! Delicious…” – Tina B.

Southern Italian cooking is an excellent cookbook for both beginners and experienced cooks. The author attempted a lot to keep the recipes as close to real as possible. Readers could follow the simple recipes step to step with natural ingredients and selected acceptable cooking methods. All of them carry out the uniqueness of Southern Italian cuisine in flavors and textures that are found nowhere.

Check the book out for an excellent selection of appetizers, soups & salads, pasta & rice, meat dishes, vegetable dishes, and desserts.

About the Author: Teresa Moretti was not a professional cook but learned from her grandfather a lot. He was a talented natural chef without formal education. Teresa’s grandfather has passed along all the experiences he got from trial and error to her. Teresa also inherited many of her grandfather’s cooking abilities and became an enthusiastic home cook. 

She began to write down classic and straightforward recipes to pass on her knowledge to the future generation about all-region culinary. Therefore, besides Southern Italian Cooking, she plans to write more cookbooks shortly so that beginners and experienced cooks will use her books as staples in their kitchens and remain favorites for a long time.

Cucina Di Calabria: Treasured Recipes and Family Traditions from Southern Italy (Cookbooks)

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“Wonderful Italian Memories” – Jeanne R.

For the past centuries, though Calabrian food has remained undiscovered because few recipes were revealed beyond tight-knit villages, Mary Amabile Palmer has collected a comprehensive collection of exciting recipes from her ancestors. Cucina di Calabria is a cookbook about a cuisine that is more adventurous and creative than most other parts of Italy.

From newcomers to the experienced cook, all of them could cook everything with nearly 200 recipes. All recipes just require simple, fresh ingredients to transformed to deluxe dishes with a little effort. They are laced with Calabrian culture and history, traditions, and festivals. The distinct point is the illustration is in black and white that brings the feel of nostalgia.

About the Author: Mary Amabile Palmer is a freelance food writer, recipe developer, and restaurant consultant. While finding sources for this book, she traveled widely throughout Calabria. She lives in Florida and is the co-social director of the Gulf Coast Italian Cultural Society.

When living in the Boston area, she was the chairwoman of the Culinary Guild of New England and a member of the International Association of Culinary Professionals and the Culinary Historians of Boston.

The Southern Italian Table: Authentic Tastes from Traditional Kitchens

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“Previous library book but in excellent condition. My dad loved it. Great Southern Italy recipes. Good pictures and little stories too.” – Liz

In The Southern Italian Table, Arthur Schwartz discovered the region’s gastronomic and the ingredients that make the food of immigrant families as her love-affair family so alluring. It’s the famous Mediterranean diet based on vegetables and greens, beans and other legumes, fish, fruit, pasta and bread, eggs and cheese, all seasoned with herbs healthful such as oregano, basil, parsley, and rosemary, plus capers, olives, fennel seeds.

Whether you are lovers of Italian food, travelers, or even Arthur Schwartz fans, The Southern Italian Table will become a favorite and a friendly guide to your homemade southern meal. 

About the Author: Arthur Schwartz is the author of five award-winning cookbooks, including Arthur Schwartz’s Jewish Home Cooking, the 2009 International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP) American Cookbook of the Year; Arthur Schwartz’s New York City Food, the 2005 IACP Cookbook of the Year; and Naples at Table, which has been advertised as the reliable source on Neapolitan cooking.

In 2001, he had owned and operated a cooking school in Southern Italy. Explore more about him and cooking at

The Food of Southern Italy

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“A longtime favorite of mine since it first was published. I have cooked nearly every recipe in this and can’t live without it. I have eaten throughout Southern Italy, and had many of the dishes Carlo includes here….his versions match closely.” – Gardiner R. Mccauley

Beyond the familiar pizza, marinara, and risotto are the whole new world of varied and delicious traditional southern Italian cooking to discover.

Every part of the complete and delicious feast is included in this book, from bread and starter to side dishes and dessert. You’ll find new techniques innovated from classics like pizza margherita and other recipes are not commonly found in most Italian cookbooks. Middione’s creative menu recommendations for every dish help make planning satisfying and authentic Italian meals simple work. 

About the Author: Carlo Middione is a second-generation of Sicilian-American and was once the Italian specialist on the faculty of the California Culinary Academy for Chefs in San Francisco. His culinary skills, friendliness enthusiasm for good Italian food have brought him a large following. He has appeared frequently on local television and his Italian restaurant in San Francisco has been praised by Gourmet magazine.

Polpo e Spada: Catch of the Day: Recipes and Culinary Adventures in Southern Italy (Italian and English Edition)

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“This is a wonderful book with excellent seafood recipes written by a young chef from the Gargano region of Puglia. It also tells the history of seafood and fishing in southern Italy complete with beautiful illustrations and photographs. It’s in both Italian and English which is great if you’re learning Italian like I am! – A M D

Seafood is the highlight in the cuisine of Southern Italy, brings up uniquely delicious dishes with real Mediterranean taste. Based on ancient knowledge, the recipes in this book are a reliable representation of the culinary traditions and brought to the modern vision.

Ingredients and traditions of the different regional cuisines are mixed to create a combination between Puglia, Calabria, Sicily, Sardinia, Campania, Abruzzo, and Molise. Just enjoy 45 recipes, 22 deeper insights, 100 photographs, and 15 drawings in this book while cooking your own meals.

About the Author:  Domenico Ottaviano, a young but experienced chef, was born and raised at Peschici in the Gargano. With a passion for photography and journalism, he wrote for countless regional newspapers.

He graduated in Parma, first in Gastronomic Sciences, and then in Food Technology. For his digital communication skills, Domenico Ottaviano was placed second in the Web Chef Competition 2014 at the Festival of Italian Cuisine in Rimini. 

Per La Famiglia: Memories and Recipes of Southern Italian Home Cooking

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“I like this book a lot because it is very personally relevant to me. The author and I share many similarities. It is a staple in my house. I use it as a reference because trust me, she reveals the secrets my aunts never did!!” – LP

Italians often celebrate with food for their family and the food is thought of before the guests which become the moment made these celebrations are memorized for. Though each family has different recipes, many generations have never had the opportunity to record what their nonnas or mamas have made.

This cookbook does not also link to the past but also connect to future meals shared with family and friends. Each recipe tells a story and includes photographs that will present the beauty in the food and inspire you to create it for yourself.

No matter who you root from the Italian family or love Italian food, this book will allow you to enjoy the taste of Southern Italian food in your home.

About the Author: Emily Richards is well-regarded as a Professional Home Economist with his rich experience. Emily Richards has extensive knowledge in the Food Industry, which is strengthened with her Bachelor of Science, Home Economics specializing in Food and Nutrition from the University of Western Ontario. Emily has authored and co-authored many cookbooks and continues to create recipes for notable magazines, newspapers, and companies.

Mezzogiorno: Southern Italian Cooking

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“Amazing food from this cookbook!!” – SandrasKitchenNook

Francesco Mazzei grew up in Calabria, the toe of Italy’s boot and popular fo producing n’duja (a spicy, spreadable pork sausage). Mazzei has become famous impressed to fellow chefs, bloggers, and critics in the last few years. He has led a varied career in Rome, Edinburgh, London, Bangkok (where he opened an Italian restaurant at the Royal Sporting Club), and Calabria.

He has brought signature dishes into his Italian Restaurant L’Anima, such as Charcoal scallops with n’duja. This book includes 80 amazing southern Italian recipes with an introduction to the food of Southern Italy.

About the Author: Francesco Mazzei, born in Calabria, is the chef of L’Anima, one of Britain’s most famous Italian restaurants. In 2014 summer, he launched L’Anima Café, the first of a new chain planned to expand over the next three years. Francesco frequently appears on Saturday Kitchen and MasterChef and hosted the MasterChef celebrity final at L’Anima in 2014.

We hope you like this post and finally find out your favorite Southern Italian 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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