Jennifer Garner’s Favorite Cookbooks Featured on ‘Pretend Cooking Show’

If you have been watching Jennifer Garner’s Pretend Cooking Show, you are probably wondering where she gets all of her delicious recipes. It turns out that she takes them from various cookbooks. We have gathered a list of her favorite featured cookbooks here. 

Jennifer Garner and Adam Kaye
Jennifer Garner and Adam Kaye at the Frigidaire Kids’ Cooking Academy | Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Frigidaire

The ‘Barefoot Contessa Cookbooks’ by Ina Garten are Jennifer Garner’s go-to cookbooks

Garner uses a variety of different cookbooks for her recipes, but her original inspiration for the Pretend Cooking Show came from the Barefoot Contessa Cookbooks by Ina Garten

The Love, Simon star uses many of Ina Garten’s cookbooks. Her latest recommendation is Cooking for Jeffrey — which is a compilation of comforting meals Garten made for her husband (Jeffrey). Garner recommends the roasted salmon tacos, the veggie soup, the maple carrots, vanilla pound cake, and of course, the skillet roasted lemon chicken.

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How can I own so many cookbooks (pretty pictures ) and cook so few things. How. Why?? Possible solution: Julie/Julia my way through a book to discover hidden gems. First up— @inagarten’s #CookingForJeffrey . Roasted salmon tacos—yum. Veggie soup—yum. Maple carrots, vanilla pound cake—yum yum. Skillet-Roasted Lemon Chicken: YUM. #cookbookchallenge #ina+jeffrey=♥️ . #BarefootContessa Skillet-Roasted Lemon Chicken Ingredients: 2 tsps fresh thyme leaves 1 tsp whole fennel seeds Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper 1/3 cup good olive oil 1 lemon, halved/sliced ¼ inch thick 1 yellow onion, halved/sliced ¼ inch thick 2 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced 1 (4lb) chicken, backbone removed and butterflied ½ cup dry white wine, such as Pinot Grigio Juice of 1 lemon . Directions: 1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. 2. Place the thyme, fennel seeds, 1 Tbsp salt, and 1 tsp pepper in a mini food processor and process until ground. Pour the olive oil into a small glass measuring cup, stir in the herb mixture, and set aside. 3. Distribute the lemon slices in a 12-inch cast-iron skillet and distribute the onion and garlic on top. Place the chicken, skin side down, on top of the onion and brush with about half the oil and herb mixture. Turn the chicken skin side up, pat it dry with paper towels (very important!), and brush it all over with the rest of the oil and herb mixture. 4. Roast the chicken for 30 minutes. Pour the wine into the pan (not on the chicken!) and roast for another 10 to 15 minutes, until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the breast registers 155 to 160 degrees. 5. Remove the chicken from the oven, sprinkle it with the lemon juice, cover the skillet tightly with aluminum foil, and allow to rest for 10 to 15 minutes. Cut the chicken into quarters or eighths, sprinkle with salt, and serve hot with the pan juices, cooked lemon, and onion. 6. YUM.

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Garner also loves Garten’s Barefoot Parties cookbook. Her favorite recipe from this book is the Chicken Chili that she loves to make as a super bowl snack to feed a crowd. Sometimes, she takes Garten’s recipes straight from Barefoot Contessa on the Food Network, such as Mae’s Sweet Potato Pudding.

Jennifer Garner raves about the ‘Huckleberry Cookbook’

While Garner loves her Contessa Cookbooks, she has another lesser-known go-to — the Huckleberry Cookbook. The author of the book is Zoe Nathan, owner of the local Santa Monica, California bakery and cafe, which is also named Huckleberry. 

From this cookbook, Garner’s favorites include English muffins as well as raspberry preserves. She has videos for both on her Instagram account. 

“It is easy to make and heaven to serve, summertime tastes like a berry preserve,” Garner captioned the jam recipe. “Kids home from camp with bellies to feed, a wee bit of time is all that you need.”

Garner often channels Martha Stewart

The 13 Going on 30 actress also has her go-to Martha Stewart recipes. Her favorite is the roast lemon chicken that she has been making for years. 

You can dress it up (homemade stock) or make it in a hurry (broth from a box—don’t tell @inagarten!), whatever you do, this recipe is a sure thing,” Garner explains in the caption of her video.

She has spent time cooking with Stewart, making various recipes live.

‘The Bread Bible’ from Real Baking With Rose is a must-have

Garner makes a gorgeous 10-grain bread from The Bread Bible by Rose Levy Beranbaum and uses it as one of her best cookbooks. Another favorite is the chocolate bread that the actress enjoys making in the winter for her children before school. 

“This recipe isn’t crazy sweet and, with a good swish of peanut butter, is just the thing for my early rising middle schooler,” Garner writes with the video.

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This time of year it is extra cozy to send kids to school with something warm in their bellies. My kids feel extra cozy about @realbakingwithrose’s chocolate bread. This recipe isn’t crazy sweet and, with a good swish of peanut butter, is just the thing for my early rising middle schooler. You can find the full episode on IGTV. #PretendCookingShow #bangwentthecabinet #‍♀️wentmybrain #hurryupchristmas . #TheBreadBible Chocolate Chocolate Chip Bread Ingredients: 3 Tbs plus 1/2 Tbs unsweetened cocoa powder 3 Tbs boiling water 1/2 Tbs pure vanilla extract 3 large eggs 1 1/2 cups sifted cake flour 3/4 cup plus 2 Tbs sugar 3/4 tsp baking powder 1/4 tsp salt 13 Tbs unsalted butter, softened 3 Tbs chocolate mini chips or bittersweet chocolate (chopped) . Directions: 1. Preheat oven to 350F. 2. Whisk cocoa and boiling water until smooth. Allow to cool to room temperature, then gently whisk in vanilla and eggs. 3. In a mixer bowl, combine cake flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Mix on low speed for 30 seconds to blend. Add half the chocolate paste and the butter and mix until dry ingredients are moistened. Increase speed to medium-high and beat for 1 minute to aerate and develop structure. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Gradually add remaining chocolate paste in two batches, beating for 20 seconds after each addition to incorporate the ingredients and strengthen the structure. Scrape down the bowl. Fold in chocolate mini chips/chopped chocolate. 4. Scrape batter into prepared loaf pan and smooth the surface with a spatula. 5. Bake for 50-60 minutes. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the center will read about 200F. (The bread shouldn’t start to shrink from the sides of the pan until after removal from the oven.) 6. Set the bread on a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes. Loosen the sides of the bread and invert onto an oiled wire rack. Reinvert so it is top side up and cool completely.

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Jennifer Garner’s honorable mentions

The actress uses so many cookbooks that it’s hard to name them all. In addition to her favorites, she also uses Melissa Clark’s NYT Recipe BoxAlton BrownTaste of Home, and All Recipes — to name a few.