Click to purchase

Click to purchase

Comfort Classics, Freezer Food, 16-Minute Meals, and Other Delicious Ways to Solve Supper!

I love Ree Drummond. I love her story (read The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels–a Love Story) and her Food Network series. Her cookbooks are hugely popular; in 2015, she pulled ahead of mega bestselling cookbook author Ina Garten, the Barefoot Contessa, with three of the top ten best selling cookbooks. According to Publisher’s Weekly, Drummond sold about 750,000 cookbooks in 2015! Life must be good on the ranch.

Dinnertime is her latest. Filled with more than 125 of her signature easy, step by step recipes and lots of pictures, this is sure to be another winner. The table of contents:

Breakfast for Dinner
Salad for Dinner
Soup for Dinner
Freezer Food
16-Minute Meals (take that. Rachael Ray!)
Pasta Pronto
Comfort Classics
New Favorites
Veggie Sides
Starchy Sides
Quick Desserts

Drummond also includes prep tips, conversion guides, shopping tips, and other helpful ideas. I noticed there were actual pictures of brand name pantry items, so I’m guessing product placement is now a lucrative sideline.

What’s wonderful about her recipes are the step-by-step pictures that she includes. So when you make Greek Yogurt Pancakes, you don’t have to guess at the consistency of the batter, you can see it. Not sure how big to make Ready-to-Go Freezer Meatballs? Just check out the size in the palm of her hand. Afraid of Chipotle and want to make your own Burrito Bowls? There are 19 pictures to help you out – plus one more of her dog swimming. Lots of ranch photos are interspersed, just in case you forget whose cookbook you are reading.

Most of the recipes include variations you can try, and it seems like most make a lot of food, about 8 servings or more. I tend to cut her recipes in half for my family of 3, and that is still plenty. My friend Judy swears by her Cajun Chicken Pasta, but I wasn’t thrilled. I am not a fan of opening jars and bottles, so that leaves out a lot of her recipes. She also favors adding sugar to a lot of recipes, and with a diabetic husband, I avoid that, too.

While I am not enamored of this cookbook, I can certainly understand why so many people are. The Los Angeles Times selected it as one of 27 best cookbooks of 2015, and it was the Goodreads 2015 Choice Award Winner in cookbooks.

1/16 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™

THE PIONEER WOMAN COOKS: DINNERTIME by Ree Drummond. William Morrow Cookbooks; First Edition edition (October 20, 2015). ISBN 978-0062225245. 400p.

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