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Last week, I got the bright idea to dive more into homesteading topics, and from that, another idea spawned of sharing with you homesteading books in my current collection and which homesteading books are on my wish list
I was watching a YouTube video… well listening to a video while writing out a list of tasks I needed to complete when I heard the person say, “How would you learn about things if the internet disappeared?“
Immediately, I stopped what I was doing and thought about it for a second. Our dependency for learning online has grow significantly over the years, but the good thing is that other ways of learning are not obsolete.
The obvious answers for learning more about homesteading is with books, hands-on experience, and connecting with other homesteaders.
In fact, you really do not even need the internet, except for as a way to connect with others. However, that is even optional.
Now I don’t say this to tell you to stop learning online. I just want you to consider what would happen if the internet did not exist.
What books would you want on hand to teach you about homesteading?
Before we dive into the homesteading books on my wish list, I want to share my current collection with you. I believe all of these books are great starting points, but there are so many more that I hope to learn from as time progresses.
Also, I do update this post when books are added to my collection, so be sure to save this post to see how my collection expands over the next few years.
Homesteading Books: My Current Collection
These are all of the books I currently have. I’ve mostly focused on getting my cookbook collection established, then ventured out from there.
I believe that regardless of how well a garden does each year, you still need good homestead-based recipes to test and try.
The Prairie Homestead Cookbook: Simple Recipes for Heritage Cooking in Any Kitchen by Jill Winger
This is one of my FAVORITE recipe books! It is well done and includes so many delicious heritage cooking tips and tricks.
Here is how Jill describes her cookbook:
“Inside this colorful cookbook I will show you how to make 100+ wholesome recipes made with fresh ingredients to bring the flavors and spirit of homestead cooking to any kitchen table. While my family produces much of our own food on our Wyoming farm, you don’t have to grow all—or even any—of your own food to cook and eat like a homesteader.
These well-tested recipes include my family’s favorites, with maple-glazed pork chops, butternut Alfredo pasta, and browned butter skillet corn. Inside you will also find bonus recipes and tutorials for homemade sauces, salt rubs, sour cream, and the like—staples that many people are surprised to learn you can make yourself.
Part recipes and part homesteading handbook, The Prairie Homestead Homestead Cookbook will not only teach you how to make traditional American comfort food recipes with simple, whole food ingredients, but will also help you get started growing your own veggies, eggs, and maybe even dairy.” – Jill Winger [source]
>> BUY THE COOKBOOK NOW! <<
The Baker Creek Vegan Cookbook by Jere and Emilee Gettle
While I am not a vegan, I do enjoy trying different vegan recipes. This cookbook is full of great simple recipes, and I encourage anyone to pick it up and give it a try!
Here is the synopsis:
“Tired of genetically modified food, but unsure of what to make and how to cook it? Jere and Emilee Gettle, cofounders of the Baker Creek Seed Company and coauthors of The Heirloom Life Gardener, bring you all the delicious answers in The Baker Creek Vegan Cookbook.
With a friendly voice, the Gettles take you through 125-plus vegan recipes that are healthy, easy to make, and appealing to vegetarians, meat-eaters, seasoned heirloom gardeners, and novice heirloom-eaters alike. The dishes are diverse in origin–with several plucked from the family’s own fabulous restaurant–and will leave you satisfied at breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert. They also share their tips and tricks on canning and preserving, as well as the staples that you need in your kitchen.
Replete with beautiful line drawings, this cookbook is a must-have for anyone interested in growing or eating heirloom vegetables and fruits.” [source]
>> BUY THE COOKBOOK NOW! <<
Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving
I feel like this is a staple homesteading book that all homesteaders need in their collection. I’ve used this and trust it more than anything I can find online to can my produce.
Here is a synopsis:
“From the experts, the new bible in home preserving.
Ball Home Canning Products are the gold standard in home preserving supplies, the trademark jars on display in stores every summer from coast to coast. Now the experts at Ball have written a book destined to become the “bible” of home preserving.
As nutrition and food quality has become more important, home canning and preserving has increased in popularity for the benefits it offers:
- Cooks gain control of the ingredients, including organic fruits and vegetables
- Preserving foods at their freshest point locks in nutrition
- The final product is free of chemical additives and preservatives
- Store-bought brands cannot match the wonderful flavor of homemade
- Only a few hours are needed to put up a batch of jam or relish
- Home preserves make a great personal gift any time of year
These 400 innovative and enticing recipes include everything from salsas and savory sauces to pickling, chutneys, relishes and of course, jams, jellies, and fruit spreads, such as:
- Mango-Raspberry Jam, Damson Plum Jam
- Crab Apple Jelly, Green Pepper Jelly
- Spiced Red Cabbage, Pickled Asparagus
- Roasted Red Pepper Spread, Tomatillo Salsa
- Brandied Apple Rings, Apricot-Date Chutney
The book includes comprehensive directions on safe canning and preserving methods plus lists of required equipment and utensils. Specific instructions for first-timers and handy tips for the experienced make the Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving a valuable addition to any kitchen library.” [source]
>> BUY THE COOKBOOK NOW! <<
The Heirloom Life Gardener by Jere and Emilee Gettle
I didn’t understand the importance of heirloom gardening until I read this book. The story of Jere Gettle learning about different heirloom plants is quite interesting and eye opening.
I highly recommend this book, not just for the story, but also for the information about plants it provides after the story.
Here is the synopsis:
“Tired of genetically modified food every day, Americans are moving more toward eating natural, locally grown food that is free of pesticides and preservatives-and there is no better way to ensure this than to grow it yourself. Anyone can start a garden, whether in a backyard or on a city rooftop; but what they need to truly succeed is The Heirloom Life Gardener, a comprehensive guide to cultivating heirloom vegetables.
In this invaluable resource, Jere and Emilee Gettle, cofounders of the Baker Creek Heirloom Seed Company, offer a wealth of knowledge to every kind of gardener-experienced pros and novices alike. His friendly voice, complemented by gorgeous photographs, Jere gives planting, growing, harvesting, and seed saving tips. In addition, an extensive A to Z Growing Guide includes amazing heirloom varieties that many people have never even seen. From seed collecting to the history of seed varieties and name origins, Jere takes you far beyond the heirloom tomato. This is the first book of its kind that is not only a guide to growing beautiful and delicious vegetables, but also a way to join the movement of people who long for real food and a truer way of living.” [source]
>> BUY THE BOOK NOW! <<
The Weekend Homesteader by Anna Hess
I haven’t sat down to read through this book yet, but it is definitely one that I am going to read ASAP, especially with spring not being that far away now.
Here is the synopsis:
“The Weekend Homesteader is organized by month—so whether it’s January or June you’ll find exciting, short projects that you can use to dip your toes into the vast ocean of homesteading without getting overwhelmed. If you need to fit homesteading into a few hours each weekend and would like to have fun while doing it, these projects will be right up your alley, whether you live on a forty-acre farm, a postage-stamp lawn in suburbia, or a high rise.
You’ll learn about backyard chicken care, how to choose the best mushroom and berry species, and why and how to plant a no-till garden that heals the soil while providing nutritious food. Permaculture techniques will turn your homestead into a vibrant ecosystem and attract native pollinators while converting our society’s waste into high-quality compost and mulch. Meanwhile, enjoy the fruits of your labor right away as you learn the basics of cooking and eating seasonally, then preserve homegrown produce for later by drying, canning, freezing, or simply filling your kitchen cabinets with storage vegetables. As you become more self-sufficient, you’ll save seeds, prepare for power outages, and tear yourself away from a full-time job, while building a supportive and like-minded community. You won’t be completely eliminating your reliance on the grocery store, but you will be plucking low-hanging (and delicious!) fruits out of your own garden by the time all forty-eight projects are complete.” [source]
>> BUY THIS BOOK NOW! <<
As you can tell, I have a long ways to go with growing my homesteading books collection, but I’d rather move slowly to implement and try things without the pressure of having so many books to read.
Homesteading Books Wish List
While I have grouped this list into categories for you to filter through this list easier, it is in no particular order of importance. I believe all of these books are as worthy as the next to have in your homestead library.
General/Broad Homesteading Books
The Urban Homestead by Kelly Coyne & Erik Knutzen
The New Complete Book of Self-Sufficiency by John Seymour
Self-Sufficiency for the 21st Century by Dick & James Strawbridge
The Encyclopedia of Country Living by Carla Emery
The Backyard Homestead Edited by Carleen Madigan
Folks, This Ain’t Normal by Joel Salatin
The Doable Off-Grid Homestead by Stewart & Shannon Stronger
Back to Basics By Abigail Gehring
The Do It Yourself Homestead by Tessa Zundel
The Five-Year Guide to Self-Sufficiency by Amelia Barrows
DIY Projects for the Self-Sufficient Homeowner by Betsy Matheson
The Resilient Farm & Homestead by Ben Falk
The Ultimate Self-Sufficiency Handbook by Abigail Gehring
The Good Life by Scott Nearing and Helen Nearing
The Lost Art of Reading Nature’s Signs by Tristan Gooley
Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver and Camille Kingsolver
Restoration Agriculture by Mark Shepard
No Dig Organic Home & Gardening by Charles Dowding and Stephanie Hafferty
How to Grow Winter Vegetables by Charles Dowding
The Market Gardener by Jean-Martin Fortier
Grow for Flavor by James Wong
The Woodland Homestead by Bret McLeod
How to Grow More Vegetables by John Jeavons
Carrots Love Tomatoes by Louise Riotte
The Resilient Gardener by Carol Deppe
Lasagna Gardening by Patricia Lanza
Seed to Seed by Suzanne Ashworth and David Cavagnaro
The Wild Wisdom of Weeds by Katrina Blair
The Homesteader’s Herbal Companion by Amy Fewell
Kitchen / Food Preserving Books
The Creative Kitchen by Stephanie Hafferty
Fermented Vegetables by Christopher Shockey and Kirsten K. Shockey
Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon
From Scratch by Shaye Elliot
The Kitchen Pantry Cookbook by Erin Coopey
Meat & Potatoes by Rahm Fama
Root Cellaring by Mike Bubel and Nancy Bubel
A Cabin Full of Food by Marie Beausoleil
Saving the Season by Kevin West
Homemaking / Herbalism Books
Little House Living by Merissa A. Alink
Pure Soapmaking by Anne-Marie Faiola
Better Homes and Gardens: Complete Guide to Quilting, More than 750 Step-by-Step Color Photographs
Stitch by Stitch: Learning to Sew, One Project at a Time by Deborah Moebes
A to Z of Crochet: The Ultimate Guide for the Beginner to Advanced Crocheter by Martingale
The Knit Stitch Pattern Handbook: An of 300 Designer Stitches and Techniques by Melissa Leapman
Healing Herbal Infusions by Colleen Codekas
Alchemy of Herbs by Rosalee De La Foret
The Country Almanac of Home Remedies by Brigitte Mars and Chrystle Fiedler
Rosemary Gladstar’s Herbal Recipes
Rosemary Gladstar’s Medicinal Herbs
Cows for the Smallholder by Val Porter
Hobby Farm Animals: A Comprehensive Guide to Raising Chickens, Ducks, Rabbits, Goats, Pigs, Sheep, and Cattle
by Sue Weaver and Ann Larkin Hansen
Storey’s Guide to Raising Ducks, 2nd Edition: Breeds, Care, Health by David Holderread
Duck Eggs Daily: Raising Happy, Healthy Ducks…Naturally by Lisa Steele
The Backyard Homestead Guide to Raising Farm Animals by Gail Damerow
The Small-Scale Poultry Flock by Harvey Ussery
Fresh Eggs Daily by Lisa Steele
Butchering Poultry, Rabbit, Lamb, Goat, and Pork by Adam Danforth
The Dairy Goat Handbook: For Backyard, Homestead, and Small Farm by Ann Starbard
Holistic Goat Care by Gianaclis Caldwell
Storey’s Guide to Raising Pigs, 4th Edition: Care, Facilities, Management, Breeds by Kelly Klober
Homegrown Pork: Humane, Healthful Techniques for Raising a Pig for Food by Sue Weaver
What homesteading books are on your wish list? What books would you recommend that should be added to my list?