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Q: top selling cookbooks in the USA ( No Answer,   3 Comments )
Subject: top selling cookbooks in the USA
Category: Family and Home > Food and Cooking
Asked by: mlindelsee-ga
List Price: $100.00
Posted: 21 May 2006 19:32 PDT
Expires: 20 Jun 2006 19:32 PDT
Question ID: 731159
I want a ranked listing of the top 5000 cookbooks sold in the USA
during the last 10 years.  Each item in the list must include cookbook
title, publisher, edition (if one exists), and publication year.

Request for Question Clarification by rainbow-ga on 23 May 2006 10:48 PDT
Would top-selling cookbooks ranked according to Amazon sales suffice
as an answer to your question? If this interests you, let me know and
I will do my best to compile the list.

However, listing 5000 books would require more time and effort than
the question is currently priced.

Looking forward to hearing your views.

Best regards,

Request for Question Clarification by pafalafa-ga on 23 May 2006 16:38 PDT

As has been noted, actual sales figures are hard to come by.

However, there are two sources of rankings for books.  One are the
lists at sites like and Barnes and Noble that provide
ranked lists of their bestselling cookbooks.

The other source are lists of library holdings, which can rank books
according to how many libraries hold general, the more
libraries that have a given cookbook, the more popular the book.

I'd be glad to access both sources, and provide a list of about 500 of
the most popular cookbooks in the past ten years.

I'm afraid that a list of 5,000 books wouldn't be feasible, though.  

Let me know what you think.

There is no answer at this time.

Subject: Re: top selling cookbooks in the USA
From: pinkfreud-ga on 21 May 2006 19:54 PDT
Publishers' sales figures can be remarkably difficult to obtain.
Putting together so large a ranked list of this type may not be an
achievable goal. I used to work in a bookstore, and we once tried to
put together a list for one of our customers who wanted to know the
top ten sellers in a certain category. After two weeks of phone calls,
emails, and letterwriting, we gave up.
Subject: Re: top selling cookbooks in the USA
From: myoarin-ga on 22 May 2006 14:53 PDT
One could add that after the first maybe twenty most popular standard
works  ("Joy of Cooking" and co.), the sales figures are probably
going to drop to a very much lower level, all of them "also rans" that
are insignificant.
Going back ten years, each year there will be a couple of cookbooks
that get nationwide coverage and sales for a short period, and then
disappear from the statistics (if any existed).
Subject: Re: top selling cookbooks in the USA
From: mlindelsee-ga on 23 May 2006 10:29 PDT
I don't know if this would make it any easier, but I'm not necessarily
interested in which cookbooks sold best in any particular year.  What
I'd like to know is what cookbooks people have on their shelves.  My
assumption was that looking at sales figures over the last 10 years
would be a reasonable approximation.  If there is an easier way to
track this down, please let me know. ;)

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