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Cookbook Publishing Services in the UK

Here at ShieldCrest, we offer cookbook publishing services for avid cooks. Cookbooks are a unique area of publishing and one that we excel in. Whether you have a cookbook with a certain angle, a deep love of a certain region of Spain, and the specialities associated with that region, or want to pay homage to your grandmother’s ingredients, we can help you to transform your collection of delicacies into a beautiful, colourful, and delicious cookbook.

What Are Publishers Looking For?

Just like other books, publishers are looking for a unique voice and a genuine passion. Whether your Polish grandmother shared recipes with you, with endless stories to accompany the smells and fragrances of her kitchen, or you have put together a collection of recipes that can be made with mince, as that is the only thing your children will eat, you just need something unique that will capture the attention of a publishing house. Obviously, the dishes do need to work, and ideally have ingredients that can be bought relatively easily, or point people to a place to source the ingredients from. But the passion and angle of your cookbook are the most important elements.

Process of Publishing a Cookbook

Refine Your Book Idea

This is your theme, angle, or story. Your cookbook idea needs to stand out and capture the attention of a publishing house.

Write Your Book Proposal

This is your selling spot. This is your opportunity to show a publisher why they should choose to publish your cookbook. Work on this, and share it with trusted family and friends for feedback, time spent on this is time well spent, this is your opportunity to impress.

Find a Literary Agent (Optional)

Not everyone needs a literary agent. Here at ShieldCrest, we accept submissions directly from authors, not just through agents. Mainstream publishing houses only accept submissions through agents, so if you choose this as your preferred route for publishing, then you will need an agent. An agent will help you to negotiate your contract, but they will take a cut of your earnings in exchange.

Submit Your Proposal to Publishers

This is your opportunity to sell your cookbook and yourself. Whatever your particular angle is, your unique voice, it needs to be conveyed here. You should include a few ideas for the menu, as well as their headnotes. The headnotes are the little stories that introduce a recipe. This will give the publishers an insight into your food. Good quality pictures of the finished dish are also important.

Negotiate a Publishing Contract

Once a publisher is interested in your cookbook, you are now in a position to negotiate a contract with them. If you have an agent, they will do the negotiations, if not, you will have to do your own negotiating. Make sure you read the contract fully and seek advice if there is anything that you do not understand.

Develop and Finalise Your Cookbook

If you have sold your cookbook based on a selection of recipes and a proposal, you now need to complete your cookbook. You will probably have a whole selection of different recipes that you want to include, so make sure you spend time choosing your favourite ones. Edit your cookbook thoroughly, and keep working on it, with the support and input of your publishers.

Marketing and Promotion

Every cookbook needs promotion and marketing. If you want to get people cooking your food in their kitchen, you need to get your cookbook in front of them. Whatever your angle is, make sure you talk about it in your promotion.

Book Launch and Sales

Celebrate your cookbook! It is a huge accomplishment to have written and published your cookbook, and it is important to celebrate your success. Your book launch will represent the beginning of your sales path. The harder you work on your sales, with your publishers, the more you will optimise the chance of your cookbook being in kitchens across the country.

How Long Does it Take to Get a Cookbook Published?

As a general rule, it takes about a year to publish a cookbook, but here at ShieldCrest we work on the basis of 4–6 months to get all the material presented in a professional way. It does depend on how complete your cookbook is when you sign your contract, but also on the publisher’s timeframe. Your cookbook will need to fit into their publishing schedule, so the timing will vary accordingly.

How Much Does it Cost to Publish a Cookbook?

Different publishers offer different deals. Some publishing companies charge the author a lot of money to publish with them. However, here at ShieldCrest, we set our prices fairly, to ensure that everyone can make money from the cookbook sales.

A Small Sample of Cookbooks We Have Published

Submit Your Cookbook to ShieldCrest

As leading independent book publishers, we welcome cookbook submissions from people who love to cook! If you have a story to tell through your recipes, a unique voice, and a flair for food, we would love to hear from you.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How do I start publishing a cookbook?

If you have a great idea for a cookbook, get in the kitchen! Once you have your cookbook proposal together, then work out which publisher to approach. Spend time on your proposal to make the most of your chances.

2. Do I need a literary agent to publish a cookbook?

Here at ShieldCrest, we accept submissions directly from authors, not just through literary agents. Some publishers only accept submissions from literary agents, so make sure that you find out what the submission guidelines are for your preferred publishers.

3. How can I self-publish a cookbook?

Self-publishing is a much more popular option these days. It can be extremely hard to get published by mainstream publishing houses, and self-publishing provides an excellent way to get your cookbook published. Here at ShieldCrest, we offer self-publishing packages to first-rate authors.

4. Do cookbooks have copyright?

You don’t have to apply for copyright. Copyright exists from the moment you start writing your book.

5. How important is recipe testing in cookbook publishing?

A cookbook is all about the recipes. Nothing is more annoying than cooking a recipe from a cookbook that has obviously not been tested and doesn’t work properly. Get other people to test your recipes. Sometimes different people interpret recipes in different ways, so make sure that you get more than one person to test your cooking skills. If you are an experienced chef, it is common for important steps in the process to be missed, that seems obvious to you, but may not be to an inexperienced cook. However, your culinary creations do need to both look and taste good. If you have those skills in place, then your chances at success are as high as anyone else!

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