The cookbook collection was formed in the late 1960s and concentrates on Canadian, American and British material. It now contains over 1700 titles. The core of the collection is primarily twentieth-century material, but there are significant nineteenth-century holdings including a long run of editions and revisions of Mrs. Beaton's Book of Household Management (first published in 1859). As well, there are a few eighteenth-century books. The collection includes a large number of ephemeral items produced by flour mills, sugar refiners and manufacturers that include recipes. To the original collection have been added some 400 cookbooks collected by Vanna Garnier. Of particular importance are a large number of cookbooks produced by church organizations and women's clubs. Soeur Berthe Sansregret, longtime director of the cooking division of the Ecole supérieure des arts et métiers in Montreal, donated some 545 cookbooks dating from the 1940s to the 1980s.
Search the cookbook collection in the Classic Catalogue.
A selection of the collection is available online via the Internet Archive.