Beginners and experts alike need to have some guidebooks on hand to help them find the best food. My favorite foraging books are often asked about, and I have so many to choose from! I’ve chosen 12 books about foraging and wildcrafting that I think are the best for you to read here. These books will help you learn how to find, identify, harvest, and use wild plants in a big way!
Wildcrafting Weeds eBook
Before I get to the 8 best foraging books, I want to let you know that I have a foraging eBook and a foraging course. You can get them from me!
Starting foragers learn how to identify common edible and medicinal plants that might be growing in their own yards. Wildcrafting Weeds: 20 Easy to Forage Edible and Medicinal Plants is a guide for new foragers. You’ll learn simple ways and recipes to forage and use wild weeds with confidence.
Best Foraging & Wildcrafting Books
You can learn everything from how to identify plants that are edible or medicinal to how to cook with and use the things you find in the wild in these books. You should read these books!
I should say that most of these books are about plants that live in North America.
There are a lot of plants that can be used for food and medicine all over the world, so these books may still be useful even if you live somewhere else.
Identifying and Harvesting Edible and Medicinal Plants
If you want to learn how to hunt for food and medicine, one of the best books is “Wildman” Steve Brill and Evelyn Dean.
Several reasons make this one of my favorite places to look for help with math. It includes a lot of plants, some of which are used for medicine, and it is organized by the seasons.
It may be hard for some people to get used to, but I like that it’s organized by season. I think this is a great way to know when to look for things.
The only thing that could be bad about this book is that it doesn’t show real pictures of the plants. As long as the drawings are really good, I don’t mind. It’s often good to see a real color picture of the plant.
The Forager’s Harvest, Nature’s Garden, and Incredible Wild Edibles
Samuel Thayer is the author of these three great books:
In the end, the Forager got a good harvest.
A garden in nature.
Incredible Wild Foods
Love them because they have great pictures and the information about who they are is top notch. There are about 30-40 plants in each book. If you have all three, you can learn about more than 100 plants.
As someone who lives in the west, I still find his first book, The Forager’s Harvest, very useful. It’s a little more focused on plants in the east of the United States and Canada, but I still find it very useful. One of the other two books talks about plants that can be found all over North America.
The Skillful Forager
If you’re an intermediate or advanced forager, you will love The Skillful Forager by Leda Meredith because it’s a good book for you! If you’re new to foraging, you should still read this book. It talks about some important things.
Leda talks about ethical and responsible foraging and harvesting, which is something to keep in mind. She also has a lot of ideas and recipes for how to use things you find in the woods.
If you want to learn about plants, this isn’t the book for you. Instead, she talks about plant groups (like roots or flowers) and gives examples of plants for each group. She also talks about how to pick each type of plant.
Leda also has a great book about foraging called The Forager’s Feast, which is more for people who are new to foraging and want to learn more about what they find.
Backyard Foraging and The Wildcrafted Cocktail
You should check out Ellen Zachos, who runs the Backyard Forager blog, because she has two books that I think are great. Her writing style is easy to read, which makes you feel like she’s your friend. She’s also very good at foraging, and she knows a lot about it!
Backyard Foraging talks about 65 plants that are likely to grow in your yard or somewhere else in your neighborhood. It’s a great book for people who are new to foraging or who don’t want to go far to find tasty wild plants.
The Wildcrafted Cocktail is a great book for anyone who likes to drink. It’s a must-have for anyone who likes to drink. In this book, there are drink recipes that use wild berries, flowers and even mushrooms to make them taste so good.
Ellen and I would like to drink a wildcrafted cocktail one day.
Forage, Harvest, Feast and The Wild Wisdom of Weeds
Here are two great books that have great recipes for wild food.
You should read Marie Viljoen’s book, Forage, Harvest, Feast. It’s a beautiful book with recipes that are easy to make. It has more than 500 recipes that use foraged ingredients like dandelion, elderflower and elderberry, garlic mustard, and nettles.
As someone who likes to cook with weeds, I love the book The Wild Wisdom of Weeds by Katrina Blair very much. She talks about 13 “weeds,” or plants that are important for humans to live, which is more accurate. Each plant is talked about in great detail and has recipes and medicinal uses.
Ugly Little Greens and The New Wildcrafted Cuisine
If you enjoy cooking with wild foods, these two books are for you. In both books, you’ll find recipes that are truly gourmet works of art.
Ugly Little Greens, a cookbook by gourmet chef Mia Wasilevich, has 80 recipes that use wild ingredients that look like they’re going to taste great. There are a lot of simple and easy to find wild plants that she uses to make pretty recipes that anyone would be proud of making.
Pascal Baudar, a foraging and fermenting guru, has written a book called The New Wildcrafted Cuisine. It’s not only a great source for learning about local food, but it also has a lot of interesting recipes. I’ve made two recipes from this book: a wild yeast starter with juniper berries and a mugwort lemon beer. Both of them were great!
All That the Rain Promises and More
This is by far the best book on mushrooms I’ve ever read!
If you want to learn about mushrooms, All That the Rain Promises and More by David Arora is the book for you. I love this book because it has good pictures and descriptions, and it’s small enough to take with you when you go out in the field.
Because it says it’s for western mushrooms, many of the mushrooms it lists will also be found in other places.
It talks about the most common mushrooms that are good for you, like morels, chanterelles, boletes, chicken of the woods, hedgehogs, and shaggy manes. It also talks about the most poisonous mushrooms, which is just as important!