Finding Inspiration and New Recipes in Men’s Magazines

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

We used to think that men’s magazines were nothing but rags, full of bikini-clad babes and advice on pumping iron. But things have changed. Men’s magazines have gotten more serious, and in turn, serious about food.

Esquire, GQ, Men’s Health, and Details all regularly surprise with an interesting feature about food. Esquire’s recipe database includes John Besh’s Braised Beef Short Ribs and Dave Pasternack’s Spaghetti with Lobster, Chilies, and Mint. They also do roundups, such as the Best Sandwiches in America, complete with recipes.

Not be outdone, this month’s Details features a roundup of the best barbecue in America, written by one of our favorite food writers, J.J. Goode. GQ employs well-known food writer Alan Richman to write an semi-monthly essay on food. While much of the focus is on restaurant cooking, home cooks can still learn something.

You might not be surprised to find that a health magazine has articles on food and nutrition. Yet, the food articles in Men’s Health aren’t just boring diet fare, or lectures about eating what’s good for you. The protein-packed recipes focus on deep, satisfying flavors. This month’s issue includes recipes for North Carolina Pulled Pork, and New Haven’s White Clam Pizza, and an article from Mark Bittman on how being picky about how meat is raised will make it tastier on your plate.

One word of caution: these are still men’s magazines. That means, you have to endure articles called “Eat Like a Man” and an aggressive, list-heavy writing style. They skirt the edge of sexism, and sometimes pull stunts such as Alan Richman’s post-Katrina stomp on New Orleans, where he said the food wasn’t that good, and Creole people didn’t really exist.

But if you can read between the lines, you might just get inspired.