It’s the holidays, and what’s one thing everyone seems to enjoy when it gets cold and dark too soon? Baking! Here are some fiction and chapter books to enjoy adventures, mysteries and fantasy titles featuring kids who cook!
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Cooking and Baking Fiction & Chapter Books
Berk, Sheryl. Recipe for Trouble
Sophie and Katherine, stars of TLC’s DC Cupcakes meet Lexi Poole. To Lexi, a new school year means back to baking with her BFFs in the cupcake club. But the club president, Kylie, is mixing things up by inviting new members. Lexi is cast in the school’s production of Romeo and Juliet. If only she could be as confident onstage as she is in the kitchen. The icing on the cake: her secret crush is playing Romeo. Sounds like a recipe for trouble. Can the girls’ friendship stand the heat, or will the cupcake club go up in smoke? This book Includes recipes and tips to try at home! Try all of the Cupcake Club series!
Dahl, Roald. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Willy Wonka’s famous chocolate factory is opening at last! But only five lucky children will be allowed inside. And the winners are: Augustus Gloop, an enormously fat boy whose hobby is eating; Veruca lt, a spoiled-rotten brat whose parents are wrapped around her little finger; Violet Beauregarde, a dim-witted gum-chewer with the fastest jaws around; Mike Teavee, a toy pistol-toting gangster-in-training who is obsessed with television; and Charlie Bucket, Our Hero, a boy who is honest and kind, brave and true, and good and ready for the wildest time of his life!
De Laurentiis, Giada. Naples!
When Zia Donatella comes to live with the Bertolizzi family, little do Alfie and his older sister Emilia know what’s in store for them. Zia Dontella is determined to show the kids how a home-cooked meal is better than even the best take-out pizza or burrito. Zia’s plan transports Alfie and Emilia to famous food cities around the world. Alfie and Emilia find themselves transported to Naples, where they meet Marco, a young Italian boy on a very important mission to shop for the essential ingredients for his family’s entry in the city’s annual pizzafest contest. In their whirlwind search for the perfect items, Alfie and Emilia not only get a taste of Italy, but also find themselves refereeing a family feud between Marco’s family and his uncle’s family. Try all the Recipe for Adventure series
Dunbar, Fiona. The Truth Cookie
In a sparkling debut reminiscent of The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, comes the story of Lulu Baker, an ordinary twelve-year-old who discovers a magical secret. Lulu Baker’s dad is getting ready to marry his new girlfriend, world-famous model Varaminta le Bone. Everyone thinks Varaminta is fabulous. Everyone, that is, except Lulu. She knows that her stepmother-to-be, not to mention her awful son Torquil, is cruel, deceitful, and just using her father. But how can she make her dad see Varaminta and Torquil for who they really are? When a magical recipe book called THE APPLE STAR finds its way into Lulu’s hands, she finds that some very unusual ingredients and some help from her friends just might do the trick. Try the whole Lulu Baker Trilogy
Elish, Dan. The Worldwide Dessert Contest
For eleven years in a row, John Applefeller has entered his highly original apple desserts in The Worldwide Dessert Contest. And every year he’s watched his delectable treats turn into disasters while the evil Sylvester Sweet wins first prize. But this year, when John’s greatest creation, the world’s largest pancake, flops, he and his sidekicks decide to seek help from the king of dessert chefs, the magical Captain B. Rollie Ragoon!
Graff, Lisa. A Tangle of Knots
Told in multiple viewpoints, A Tangle of Knots is a magnificent puzzle. In a slightly magical world where everyone has a Talent, eleven-year-old Cady is an orphan with a phenomenal Talent for cake baking. But little does she know that fate has set her on a journey from the moment she was born. And her destiny leads her to a mysterious address that houses a lost luggage emporium, an old recipe, a family of children searching for their own Talents, and a Talent Thief who will alter her life forever. However, these encounters hold the key to Cady’s past and how she became an orphan. If she’s lucky, fate may reunite her with her long-lost parent.
Hannigan, Kate. Cupcake Cousins
Cousins Willow and Delia can’t wait to spend a week vacationing together with their families. Their aunt is getting married, and Willow and Delia are hoping their tasty baked goods will be enough to get them out of being flower girls in the wedding. But with a mischievous little brother, a bacon-loving dog, and a misbehaving blender in the mix, their treats don’t exactly turn out as planned. When a real emergency threatens to ruin the wedding, will their baking skills be enough to save the day? Try the other Cupcake Cousins books!
Harper, Charise. Just Grace and the Trouble with Cupcakes
It’s time for the school fair, and Just Grace’s class has chosen a cupcake theme. But the fair’s highlight, a cupcake competition, causes quite a stir when Grace gets paired with dreadful Owen and not with her best pal, Mimi. Grace is devastated. And just when she thinks things can’t get worse, her team votes down her idea to build a cupcake Eiffel Tower in favor of building Spiderman. It’s a challenging time for Grace. Will she be able to overcome her disappointment and lead her team onward? Will Grace’s team ever figure out how to make a Spiderman out of cupcakes? Try the other Just Grace books
Horvath, Polly. Everything on a Waffle
Primrose’s parents have been lost at sea, but she believes without an iota of doubt that they are still alive, somewhere. She moves in with her Uncle Jack, but feels generally friendless. Her only real refuge is a local restaurant called The Girl on the Red Swing, where the owner, Miss Bowzer, serves everything on waffles – except advice and good sense which come free of charge and are always reliable. Food in general plays an important role in Primrose’s journey toward peace and understanding.
Kingfisher, Rupert. Madame Pamplemousse and her Incredible Edibles
Madame Pamplemousse is the story of Madeleine, forced to work in her unpleasant uncle’s horrible restaurant, The Squealing Pig . By chance she comes across the most marvelous shop, run by Madame Pamplemousse, which is quiet, discreet, yet full of delicious and otherworldly ‘edibles’ – Pterodactyl Bacon, Scorpion Tails in Smoked Garlic Oil, and Great Squid Tentacle in Jasmine-Scented Jelly. A quiet comradeship develops between Madeleine, Madame Pamplemousse, and Madame’s cat, Camembert. And together they create some wonderful culinary magic. Try the sequel too!
Lin, Grace. Dumpling Days
This summer, Pacy’s family is going to Taiwan for an entire month to visit family and prepare for their grandmother’s 60th birthday celebration. Pacy’s parents have signed her up for a Chinese painting class, and at first she’s excited. This is a new way to explore her art talent! But everything about the trip is harder than she thought it would be–she looks like everyone else but can’t speak the language, she has trouble following the art teacher’s instructions, and it’s difficult to make friends in her class. At least the dumplings are delicious…As the month passes by, Pacy eats chicken feet (by accident!), gets blessed by a fortune teller, searches for her true identity, and grows closer to those who matter most.
Magnin, Joyce. Cake
More than frosting filled those cakes. Wilma Sue seems destined to go from one foster home to the next–until she is sent to live with sisters and missionaries, Ruth and Naomi. Do they really care about Wilma Sue, or are they just looking for a Cinderella-style farmhand to help raise chickens and bake cakes? As Wilma Sue adjusts to her new surroundings and helps deliver “special” cakes, Wilma Sue realizes there’s something strange going on. She starts looking for secret ingredients, and along the way she makes a new friend, Penny. When Penny and her mother hit a rough patch, Naomi decides to make her own version of cake–with disastrous results. Then tragedy strikes the chickens, and all fingers point to Wilma Sue–just when she was starting to believe she could at last find a permanent home with Ruth and Naomi. Will the sisters turn her out, or will she discover what it feels like to be truly loved?
Mass, Wendy. Pi in the Sky
Joss is the seventh son of the Supreme Overlord of the Universe. His older brothers help his dad rule the cosmos, but all Joss gets to do is deliver pies. That’s right: pies. Of course, these pies actually hold the secrets of the universe between their buttery crusts, but they’re still pies. Joss is happy to let his older brothers shine. He has plenty to keep his hands full: attempting to improve his bowling score; listening to his best friend, Kal, try (and fail) to play the drums; and exploring his ever-changing home, The Realms. But when Earth suddenly disappears, Joss is tasked with the seemingly impossible job of bringing it back. With the help of Annika, an outspoken girl from Earth, he embarks on the adventure of a lifetime…and learns that the universe is an even stranger place than he’d imagined.
McCall-Smith, Alexander. The Great Cake Mystery
Have you ever said to yourself; wouldn’t it be nice to be a detective? This is the story of an African girl who says just that. Her name is Precious. When a piece of cake goes missing from her classroom, a traditionally built young boy is tagged as the culprit. Precious, however, is not convinced. She sets out to find the real thief. Along the way she learns that your first guess isn’t always right. She also learns how to be a detective.
McCall-Smith, Alexander. The Perfect Hamburger and Other Delicious Stories
When a snazzy fast-food chain moves into town, business at Joe’s favorite hamburger restaurant begins to suffer. He gets an idea that’s sure to bring back the diners, but there’s just one problem. The secret recipe for the burgers is missing! Can Joe figure out the ingredients to recreate the perfect hamburger before it’s too late? Enjoy two other delicious stories featuring three young chefs with some enterprising ideas!
Michaels, Anna. The Adventures of Miss Petitfour
Miss Petitfour enjoys having adventures that are “just the right size – fitting into a single, magical day.” She is an expert at baking and eating fancy iced cakes, and her favorite mode of travel is par avion. On windy days, she takes her sixteen cats out for an airing with the aid of her favorite tea party tablecloth as a makeshift balloon, Miss Petitfour and her charges fly over her village, having many little adventures along the way. Join Miss Petitfour and her equally eccentric felines on five magical outings — a search for marmalade, to a spring jumble sale, on a quest for “birthday cheddar”, the retrieval of a lost rare stamp and as they compete in the village’s annual Festooning Festival. A whimsical, beautifully illustrated collection of tales that celebrates language, storytelling and small pleasures, especially the edible kind!
Pankhurst, Kate. Mariella Mystery Investigates a Cupcake Conundrum
She’s smart as a whip, super sleuth-y, and able to solve most mysterious mysteries and perplexing problems in no time flat. Mariella Mystery (age nine and a bit) knows that all good detectives write down important information about their investigations. In this top-secret journal she tackles the case of who is trying to sabotage the Puddleford baking contest with important clues and observations, helpful drawings, and handy tips for new detectives.
Papademetriou, Lisa. Save the Cupcake
Hayley has a knack for baking cupcakes with all sorts of ingredients, from cocoa to peanuts to even Thai curry! She and her little sister, Chloe, have just moved into their grandmother’s house with their mom, who divorced their dad a year ago and has just been laid off from her job. Hayley often helps out at her grandmother’s tea shop, where she gets to practice her cupcake-baking skills. She makes a batch for her new class only to learn that the PTA president’s daughter is allergic to gluten. Before she even gets a chance to share her gluten-free cupcake recipe, Hayley finds out that the PTA may instate a school-wide cupcake ban. Now it’s up to Hayley and her new friends to “Save the Cupcake!” Try the other books in the Confectionately Yours series.
Pearce, Jackson. Sweetly
As a child, Gretchen’s twin sister was taken by a witch in the woods. Ever since, Gretchen and her brother, Ansel, have felt the long branches of the witch’s forest threatening to make them disappear, too. Years later, when their stepmother casts Gretchen and Ansel out, they find themselves in sleepy Live Oak, South Carolina. They’re invited to stay with Sophia Kelly, a beautiful candy maker who molds sugary magic: coveted treats that create confidence, bravery, and passion. Life seems idyllic and Gretchen and Ansel gradually forget their haunted past — until Gretchen meets handsome local outcast Samuel. He tells her the witch isn’t gone — it’s lurking in the forest, preying on girls every year after Live Oak’s infamous chocolate festival, and looking to make Gretchen its next victim. Gretchen is determined to stop running and start fighting back. Yet the further she investigates the mystery of what the witch is and how it chooses its victims, the more she wonders who the real monster is. Gretchen is certain of only one thing: a monster is coming, and it will never go away hungry.
Schaefer, Laura. The Teashop Girls
Annie, Genna, and Zoe have been hanging out at the Steeping Leaf since elementary school. The Teashop Girls do everything together — at least they used to. With the end of eighth grade approaching, Genna’s too busy with theater, Zoe’s always at tennis, and Annie feels totally left out. What happened to tea every week, no matter what? When Annie convinces her grandmother to give her a job as a barista at the Leaf, things begin to look up. In between whipping up chai lattes for customers, and attempting to catch the attention of her Barista Boy crush, Annie is finally beginning to feel as grown-up as her best friends. But an eviction notice spells trouble for the Leaf and unless they can turn the business around, the teashop will have to close its doors forever.
Smith, Robert Kimmel. Chocolate Fever
Henry Green is a boy who loves chocolate. He likes it bitter, sweet, dark, light, and daily; for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks; in cakes, candy bars, milk, and every other form you can possibly imagine. Henry probably loves chocolate more than any boy in the history of the world. One day-it starts off like any other day-Henry finds that strange things are happening to him. First he makes medical history with the only case of Chocolate Fever ever. Then he finds himself caught up in a wild and hilarious chase, climaxed by a very unusual hijacking!
Spinelli Eileen The Dancing Pancake
The grand opening of the Dancing Pancake isn’t the only new thing in Bindi’s life: new friends, a new apartment, maybe even a cute new crush? But there are other changes, like her dad’s move to a new city that have left Bindi confused and wondering: What will happen to my family? Will this new life ever feel normal? Among the unlikely bunch of regulars who form a makeshift community at the diner, Bindi will try to figure out how to be a new version of herself, one pancake and one silly elephant joke (her uncle’s specialty) at a time.
Staniszewski, Anna. The Prank List
Rachel Lee never thought she’d fight for the right to clean toilets. But when a rival cleaning business starts stealing her mom’s clients, Rachel will do whatever it takes to save herself the horror of moving to Connecticut―even giving up her fantastic new pastry classes, and her best friend Marisol. Operation Save Mom’s Cleaning Business is a go! But when the series of pranks Rachel and her BFF cook up to take down the competition totally backfires, Rachel worries that her recipe for success is a dud. You know what they say―if you can’t stand the heat, stay out of the kitchen… Try other books in The Dirt Diary trilogy!
Thorpe, Kiki. In a Blink
Kate craves adventure and excitement. Mia loves dresses, roses, and anything beautiful. Lainey dreams of talking to animals. Gabby believes in fairies more than anyone. In a blink of an eye, these four best friends all get their biggest wish–they’re whisked off to Never Land, home to Tinker Bell and her fairy friends.The Never Girls is a fun series based on Disney characters.
Weeks, Sarah. Pie
When Alice’s Aunt Polly, the Pie Queen of Ipswitch, passes away, she takes with her the secret to her world-famous pie-crust recipe. Or does she? In her will, Polly leaves the recipe to her extraordinarily fat, remarkably disagreeable cat, Lardo . . . and then leaves Lardo in the care of Alice. Suddenly, the whole town is wondering how you leave a recipe to a cat. Everyone wants to be the next big pie-contest winner, and it’s making them pie-crazy. It’s up to Alice and her friend Charlie to put the pieces together and discover the not-so-secret recipe for happiness: Friendship, family and the pleasure of doing something for the right reason. With Pie, acclaimed author Sarah Weeks has baked up a sweet and satisfying delight, as inviting as warm pie on a cold day. You’ll enjoy every last bite.
Wilson, Jacqueline. Cookie
Beauty Cookson isn’t beautiful. Her father chose her name because he wants her to be a confident, popular girl. She tries to fit in, but she’s plain and awkward. All the girls at school make fun of her and have nicknamed her Ugly. Her mother thinks she needs a fun, creative nickname, something like . . . Cookie! But kids at school can’t just be told to call her Cookie. And, even worse, her Dad doesn’t approve. His already bad temper reaches frightening new heights. Will Cookie find the strength to stand up to her dad? And will she find a way to be the person she wants to be?
Winston, Sherri. President of the Whole Fifth Grade
When Brianna Justice’s hero, the famous celebrity chef Miss Delicious, speaks at her school and traces her own success back to being president of her fifth grade class, Brianna determines she must do the same. She just knows that becoming president of her class is the first step toward her own cupcake-baking empire! But when new student Jasmine Moon announces she is also running for president, Brianna learns that she may have more competition than she expected. Will Brianna be able to stick to her plan of working with her friends to win the election fairly? Or will she jump at the opportunity to steal votes from Jasmine by revealing an embarrassing secret? This hilarious, heartfelt novel will appeal to any reader with big dreams, and the determination to achieve them.
Wrede, Patricia. Sorcery and Cecelia: or the Enchanted Chocolate Pot
A great deal is happening in London this season. For starters, there’s the witch who tried to poison Kate at Sir Hilary’s induction into the Royal College of Wizards. (Since when does hot chocolate burn a hole straight through one’s dress?!) Then there’s Dorothea. Is it a spell that’s made her the toast of the town–or could it possibly have something to do with the charm-bag under Oliver’s bed? And speaking of Oliver, just how long can Cecelia and Kate make excuses for him? Ever since he was turned into a tree, he hasn’t bothered to tell anyone where he is! The girls might think it all a magical nightmare . . . if only they weren’t having so much fun.
Zahler Diane Baker’s Magic
Bee is an orphan in the poor kingdom of Aradyn, and when she is caught stealing a bun from a bakery, the lonely baker offers to take her on as an apprentice–but when she meets Princess Anika, and the evil mage Joris who is her “guardian” she embarks on a journey to save Anika, and restore the kingdom its rightful ruler.
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We hope you enjoy these great stories of cooking from all around the library! If you would like to see if any of them are available for checking out, just look the title up on the Minuteman Library Network Catalog. If it’s not available in Weston, we can put it on hold for you, and have it sent from one of our other member libraries!
Booklist prepared by Hope