Food blogs and Pinterest  are great recipe resources, but most every serious (and not-so-serious) cook has a special place in her heart — and bookshelf — for those especially beloved cookbooks.
For busy moms, nothing beats a trusty tome full of reliable recipes that she can refer back to for any occasion. Here, the seven cookbooks that we believe no mom should be without. Don't be surprised if everyone asks for seconds!
Barefoot Contessa Family Style
In our eyes, Ina Garten can do no wrong. Her entire arsenal of cookbooks is fantastic, but when you're cooking for kids, Barefoot Contessa Family Style  ($20) is simply the best. Recipes like penne with five cheeses and oven-fried chicken are straightforward enough that kids will gobble them up, and sophisticated enough to be served at a dinner party.
Ten Dollar Dinners
As a mom of four herself, Food Network's Melissa d'Arabian  knows a thing or two about cooking for a family. Despite its name, her cookbook Ten Dollar Dinners  isn't all about budget cooking, it's all about a fresh, smart approach to feeding your family. In addition to traditional "follow the rules" recipes, d'Arabian includes guidelines for working with what you have to create healthy and wholesome meals.
The Busy Mom's Cookbook
Top Chef Antonia Lofaso's The Busy Mom's Cookbook  ($19) is interspersed with tips and tricks for getting your kids excited about eating. "Having my daughter in the kitchen has made her a amore adventurous eater, but it's also been about getting her to the supermarket and letting her pick out her own fruits and vegetables," Lofaso said. Get inspired with 100 practical and easy recipes that your tots will eat right up.
How to Cook Everything
There's a reason that How to Cook Everything  ($20) author Mark Bittman has a weekly column in The New York Times, and is one of the best-known food writers in the country. His simple, straightforward approach to food preparation puts a focus on the ingredients, and allows room for variation, making his best-known cookbook a must for moms with limited time.
Home at 7 Dinner at 8
British chef Sophie Wright offers a cheeky approach to "100 satisfying suppers on the table in an hour or less" in Home at 7 Dinner at 8  ($15, originally $20). Divided into sections like "Everyday," "Watching the Pennies," and "Posh Nosh," this book is sure to become a staple that you'll refer to on school nights and holidays alike.
Dinner a Love Story
More than just a cookbook, Dinner a Love Story  ($18) incorporates author Jenny Rosenstrach's personal anecdotes, advice for feeding and nurturing a family, pantry must-haves, making the most of dinnertime, and more. If you've already read the book cover-to-cover and are yearning for more of Jenny's wit and wisdom, luckily, there's a complementary blog .
The Mom 100 Cookbook
Katie Workman, author of The Mom 100 Cookbook  ($12, originally $16), founder of Cookstr.com , and mother of two, shares her personal advice and expertise in this no-nonsense guide to cooking food that your kids will eat (and enjoy). Workman takes on 20 of the most common cooking dilemmas faced by parents, and tackles each with five manageable solutions.