Book Review – The Gluten-Free Instant Pot Cookbook Revised and Expanded Edition by Jane Bonacci, Sara De Leeuw.

3 out of 5 stars

I would like to thank Quarto Publishing Group – Harvard Common Press for providing me with a free – temporary – electronic ARC of this book, via Netgalley. Although I’m auto-approved with this publisher, the decision to read this book is entirely my choice and any reviews given are obligation free.

As my regular readers will know, wheat is one of the things I can’t eat… without ill-effects. I could go into it, but that would detract from the review so let’s skip talking about me and get on with talking about ‘The Gluten Free Instant Pot Cookbook Revised and Expanded Edition.

I enjoyed reading through this cookbook and could even see myself making some of the recipes. Yes, look, I didn’t try any of the recipes and I am being open and honest about it. Just like I didn’t try and solve murders, cast spells or hunt monsters as discussed in other books I’ve recently finished. I don’t try EVERY book I read. But I definitely COULD see myself giving some of the recipes from ‘The Gluten Free Instant Pot Cookbook Revised and Expanded Edition’ a go. I’ve even noted down the gluten-free flour blend they use. So, yes, there were a few really interesting recipes I would like to try… but sadly the majority of recipes fit into the “other foods I can’t eat without ill-effects” as they are full of dairy, allium, seafood, etc. I am a pain to cook for, which is why I do most of the cooking myself. 😉

What I loved about ‘The Gluten Free Instant Pot Cookbook Revised and Expanded Edition’ is the fact that the very first thing listed on a recipe, under its title, was what other common food allergies, issues and intolerance that recipe is free off. Such as: dairy free, soy free, nut free, vegetarian, etc. Yes allium was never listed as so few people have allergies and intolerances to these evil little critters I generally assume they are in everything savoury I look at. However, this quick reference “safe foods list” was still incredibly helpful and really made me feel the authors were truly passionate about helping people with food issues find recipes they can make and eat without fear of ill-effects. This is one of the biggest struggles for people with food allergies and intolerances, so I am always grateful to those who include it so clearly.

Another positive for ‘The Gluten Free Instant Pot Cookbook Revised and Expanded Edition’ is that the majority of recipes are made up of whole food ingredients. Yes there is the odd one or two recipes that ask for a bottle of pre-made this or that… but these recipes are few and far between. I feel this is another sign of a very good cook book. It shows the authors are very conscious not just of the need to be gluten free, but healthy by sticking to whole foods.

Oh, and if you don’t have an Instant Pot – don’t fear! The recipes are written in such a way that the cooking instructions can work for any multi-cooker with similar functions. I have a Philips All-in-one cooker and feel the cooking instructions given in ‘The Gluten Free Instant Pot Cookbook Revised and Expanded Edition’ would work just as easily for me than for someone who has an Instant Pot.

About the only downside I can see is it’s not exactly a family friendly book when it comes to portion sizes. The majority of the recipes serve four at most. I have a family of five… A lot of my friends have even larger families. So, we’d all have to either double the recipes for find other things to bulk out meals out with.

‘The Gluten Free Instant Pot Cookbook Revised and Expanded Edition’ is broken down into ten sections for easy searching. Each section starts with an introduction of that section, and then lists the recipes it includes. Making it a great, quick reference guide. Something we all need from time to time when we just want to get meals in the slow cooker and get on with the rest of our to do lists.

There is also a very useful intro that helps you feel “at home” with the book, and it talks at a level I feel suitable for those new to multi-cookers, through to those more experienced with these kitchen life savers.

For the nerd girl formatting side of things… well, there were the odd typo, but none of us are perfect. I know I’m not. But nothing major that would cause you to stuff up a recipe. The recipes are clear, easy to read, easy to follow and well formatted. Although I love a book that has limited images (not all recipe comes with an image) there may be some cooks who won’t like this. To me, less photos of the food means more room for recipes and you really can’t complain about that!

Would I recommend this book for others?

Yes I would. Especially those with busy lives and young children newly diagnosed as being gluten free. No, not because it is a cook book aimed at kids – it’s not. But because it is a great whole food, gluten free, family cookbook that would allow a parent to ensure there is still food variety in the house, while also avoiding gluten. And I also feel the younger families would work better for the portion sizes offered. Serves 4 works better with two adults and young kids than for me with two adults, a teen and two tweens who are always hungry!

Other people – new or not so new – to the gluten free diet will also love it. Especially if you don’t have all the other food allergies and intolerances I have. Though, I have to admit, many recipes cater to more than just gluten free options. It is a good, allergy/ intolerances friendly cookbook.

Would I buy this book for myself?

I might… but I have to be honest with you and say I’m more likely to seek it out as a library book and make a note of the few recipes I would want to try. Basically, I own hundreds of cookbooks. Waaay too many, if I am honest. And so I am trying to streamline and only keep cookbooks that are either sentimental favourites or those where I would make at least 50% of the recipes regularly. Sadly ‘The Gluten Free Instant Pot Cookbook Revised and Expanded Edition’ doesn’t contain that many recipes that I would want to cook regularly. Not because it is full of bad recipes – it is NOT. Simply because I have more than just gluten I need to avoid and too many of the recipes contain things I can’t substitute, leave out or use. Plus the portion size issues. The fault lies with me, not the book.

In summary: A great, family friendly, whole food gluten free cook book.

Until next time,
Janis.

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