Dessert Can Save the World

Stories, Secrets, and Recipes for a Stubbornly Joyful Existence

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Pub Date 08 Mar 2022 | Archive Date 31 Jul 2022

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The James Beard Award–winning founder of Milk Bar and host of Bake Squad shares her personal stories and wisdom for igniting passion, following your joy, and creating a satisfying life.
Dessert connects us heart-to-heart like almost nothing else. It brings us together in good times and bad, celebration and solace. It marks big and small milestones and creates memories of comfort and joy. And Christina Tosi, the founder and CEO of Milk Bar, believes it can save the world.
Does the combination of sugar, flour, and butter have some magical ability to fix all the craziness of our modern existence? Of course not. Tosi knows a cookie is just a cookie—but bringing the joy a cookie holds into every area of your life most definitely can. The spirit of dessert—the relentless, unflinching commitment to finding or creating joy even when joy feels hard to come by—is what can save us. And then we, in turn, can each save the world.

Tosi shares the wisdom she learned growing up surrounded by strong women who showed her baking’s ability to harness love and create connection, as well as personal stories about succeeding in the highly competitive food world by unapologetically being her true self. Studded with personal and unorthodox recipes, Dessert Can Save the World reveals the secret ingredients for transforming our outlooks, our relationships, our work, and our entire collective existence into something boldly optimistic and stubbornly joyful.
The James Beard Award–winning founder of Milk Bar and host of Bake Squad shares her personal stories and wisdom for igniting passion, following your joy, and creating a satisfying life.

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ISBN 9780593231944
PRICE $26.00 (USD)

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Featured Reviews

Thank you to NetGalley for an ARC of Dessert Can Save the World.

This book is right up my alley because I am MAD for dessert.

I'm that person who flips to the dessert menu first when I go out to eat. I'm the person who eats less of her main meal or entree to ensure I always have room for dessert. I'm that person who may just have enjoyed dinner at a great restaurant but if dessert sucks, all I remember is how bad dessert was, not how amazing the rest of the meal was.

That's me. I am a dessert lover. I love sweets. I eat it every day, even if its just a small square of chocolate. Naturally, I was excited when my request was approved.

As a native New Yorker, I know what Milk Bar is and the founder/CEO Christina Tosi is just as famous as the company she built from the ground up with her innovative and creative desserts.

Dessert Can Save the World isn't just a great title of a sweet memoir of the author, it's the author's reminder that food and dessert connects us, humanity, together. We celebrate the good and the bad with dessert, when our hearts have been broken or we are sad, there's always dessert. It almost never disappoints.

The author details her path to success in work and life; back breaking work and grueling hours in the culinary world perfecting her craft and, along the way, discovering her destiny and her path in life.

She shares the wisdom she learned growing up surrounded by strong and generous women; her stories about her mother are my favorite and hilarious and laugh out loud sweet. After I finished reading, I wanted to meet her mom!

Don't worry; there are recipes but the narrative nearly outshine the recipes in my opinion; Tosi's tone is strong and passionate; she's funny, sincere and warm.

Her love of baking and sharing her creations with the people she loves and the world shines through, which leads directly to the title.

Dessert Can Save the World is a metaphor; world peace isn't going to happen if Biden and Putin share a milk bar cookie but a positive attitude, being true to yourself, doing good and being empathetic and radiating goodness with those who need it when they least expect it can improve not just our personal outlooks but the world at large.

Dessert Can Save the World is an optimistic and joyful look at improving your life and the lives of others.

And if you're having a bad day, that's okay. Have a cookie (or pie or ice creak or cake), step back and recharge.

Tomorrow is another day to be you and do good.

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I received a copy of this book through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

I can't seem to escape books about Milk Bar (or rather Milk Bar adjacent in this case). This is an interesting book by Tosi.

Part memoir, part recipe book it's a dive into celebrating more and experiencing joy. I was expecting more recipes, and photos of said recipes so that was a bummer. The recipes are mostly for basic things like cake and family recipes. The lessons portion of this book is more interesting. Tosi talks about celebrating the little things and shares stories. There's a lot in this book about finding ways to experience joy, which feels especially relevant. It's a light and enjoyable read.

Overall not what I was expecting, but an interesting read.

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This is a delightful memoir by Christina Tosi. It chronicles her early life through today, her love of baking and her journey in the restaurant business. What it isn’t is a cookbook. Enjoy the story, and the half dozen recipes, but don’t expect recipes and a little story.

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I am absolutely in love with this book AND its author! I had heard of Christina Tosi through her baking books, so when I saw that she was coming out with a book with personal stories and life lessons, I was sold! Even though I knew this book would be adorable--and I can't wait to try some of the recipes she includes--I was really impressed with the words of wisdom that she gives her readers. They're super simple, but also impactful. My favorite lesson she imparts is that the joy behind a cookie (or cake or pie, etc,.) can change the world. The joy that is so lacking today in people's lives can be had again, and kindness can be the start to that. Making other people feel special; it's a simple task, but one that has the biggest ripple effect. I have tried to do better about this the last few years, and I can assure you, it has done wonders for me. More importantly, it's the right thing to do, and I love that Tosi uses baking to get this message across. I also went to pastry school, and she is so spot-on with why people get into pastry arts in the first place. I loved the anecdotes with her mother (who sounds so awesome!), and reading about those acts of service is very inspiring.

My absolute favorite part of the book, however, is her chapter on guilty desserts. That's the moment I fell in love with both Tosi AND this book: when I found out about the little dessert idiosyncrasies she has, because I have them too! It made her seem so relatable, and I love that she puts this in her book, because it really proves to people that she isn't some pastry snob--she's just like us!

What it all boils down to is this: I love this book and the wisdom Tosi imparts to her readers. I love the personal anecdotes, family stories, and fun recipes. If you're looking for a bright, positive, colorful book to read this spring, this is your book!

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I sat down and read Dessert Can Save the World in a night. I have always admired and looked up to the brilliance that is Christina Tosi. And having her show up every day in the beginning of the pandemic for a bunch of strangers, seeing her have a baby and grow her empire exponentially, I often though, how does she do it. I appreciate this is a recent memoir in the sense it was written so recently and we got to see how her upbringing, her past etc is what fueled her. Her advice is simple yet so profound. I think Mama Greta needs to write her own book as she is a gem of a woman. This book is wonderful read and perfect any Milkbar hardbody.

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This was an interesting look at Tosi’s value/mission regarding her choices with running her bakery business and the ways in which she has bucked the traditional male dominated energy of professional kitchens. There are a few recipes sprinkled in, but it’s mostly a manifesto on the emotional, social and cultural importance of dessert in any form.

ARC from the publisher via NetGalley, but the opinions are my own.

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Perfect book for these often hard times. I loved Tosi's philosophy of just bake the cake and her grandmother's advice to "go sew" when you're angry. A much needed mood boost! Loved that recipes were included.

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As someone who bakes to relieve stress and receives yummy noises from taste testers like applause, this book was right up my alley! I’ll admit that I thought it was going to be more of a cookbook but it’s a happy memoir with lots of fun and funny stories from the author’s childhood and culinary career. Not to worry, there are a few yummy recipes included! This book is a ray of sunshine in this crazy time in history, I highly recommend it, it’s guaranteed to make you smile.

Thank you Netgalley, Rodale Inc and Christina Tosi for this eARC in exchange for my honest review. Publication date is set for March 8, 2022

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I am a fan of Tosi's Milk Bar bakeries, and I completely agree with her that Dessert can save the world. Besides that, I thoroughly enjoyed reading her baking memoir. Her attitude about how to treat people--both employees and customers--makes me like her even more than I already did. I read it on my kindle, but I'll need to buy a paper copy so I have the recipes easily at hand.

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Milk Bar founder/CEO Christina Tosi through the lens of a chef brings into focus the fact that dessert is beyond just having cake, pie, your favorite topping, etc. She shares how her path provided life lessons that helped her to navigate relationships whether with family, friends, or coworkers to transform into the chef, businesswoman, wife, mother and all the roles that she plays today.

She writes about simply bringing joy by saying yes when you can and understanding how to navigate a world where giving joy is not always the focus or the priority. The recipes are fewer than expected but provide context to her stories. This is an opportunity to read about how she lived through the challenges she has faced and still remained true to self.

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Christina's book is a food-memory resurrecting tale from a delightfully optimistic, hard-working, and inspiring voice. It took me back in time to savoring frozen Hostess treats from my grandma's freezer, making gooey cheese and butter sandwiches slight melted in the microwave, and spitting (yes, spitting) melted ice cream back into my bowl to create a creamy "soft-serve". Christina never makes you feel ashamed about your "dirty dessert secrets"; in fact, she encourages you to embrace them. The book is light, fun, and the included recipes are simple and stress-free.

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This book is about dessert. But it's also about the dessert of life. I enjoyed the stories and the memoir-like experience, along with great tips and interesting ideas. For instance, 10 things to celebrate. It's an enjoyable book and very unique in its style, along with fun recipes.

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I have been a Christina Tosi fan since the first time I visited New York and went to Milk Bar and this is another amazing book from one of the most talented dessert chefs.

Dessert Can Save the World is a mix of autobiography, recipes, and stories from Tosi and I loved learning more about her and her experiences and she has done so much to get where she is today. You can just tell what a ray of sunshine Tosi is from the way she writes to the way she cooks. This book is filled with her passion and amazing recipes.

This is not a straight up cookbook, but it is an amazing insight with some recipes into Tosi and the importance of dessert. Which we all know is the best meal.

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Christina Tosi gives great advice on her (and her mom's) philosophy on life: Bake the Cake, Celebrate with dessert when you can, Don't make it just about you.
Tosi is an optimist whose attitude and perspective are incredibly compelling. Reading her book will give you a lift--that's besides the sugar rush from eating the cookies, etc...--and make this day's and the next day's problems shift into simple tasks in mindset.

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Like stumbling into a new friend, a great listener who knows just what to say and how to create comfortable silence - this title is the comfort food we didn't know we needed.

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I think that the highest compliment I can give this delightful book is that, as I was nearing the end of it, I was already making plans to hop on Amazon & purchase two hardcover copies for myself & for my mother-in-law, who 1) loves food, 2) owns her own porta-potty business & 3) is a self-proclaimed tomboy girly-girl who redefined what being a boss looked like in her extremely male-dominated industry, much like the illustrious Ms. Tosi herself! (Sadly, I shortly after that realized that I won't be able to do that for a few more months until the actual pub day!! *sad face*).

Disclaimer: I've been a little bit of a Milk Bar/ Christina Tosi super fan since the days when I lived in Brooklyn & could push my toddler/ newborn-laden stroller to the Carroll Gardens location right over the F train stop, while also watching her at home as a judge on MasterChef Jr. while I breastfed my baby girl (who's now nearly 8!), so Ms. Tosi didn't need a lot of help to win me over; that job was done! But I WILL say that I do happen to also be super picky about writing styles & ability, and I'll often read books that are written by some of my faves outside of the writing world with a fair amount of trepidation, mentally sending the message "PLEASE DON'T SUCK!", and I am pleased to say that I dove headfirst into this gooey, sugary, delectable confection-with-a-soul of a book and never once cringed. Even when CT packs on the cheese & the sugar, she does so with full, unapologetic self-awareness that manages to be entirely relatable, while not compromising her own authenticity. I could also "hear" her voice narrating this entire book as I read, so I somewhat feel like I had the audiobook experience, as well! :)

This is a book that is a love letter to her family, to the people with whom she's worked along the way, to her team at Milk Bar, and (duh!) to DESSERT- in all its glorious and "dirty secret" forms. I love a good food memoir, and this one delivers with a few fun recipes and "non-recipes", lots of fun & funny anecdotes pulled from her childhood & culinary career, and heartwarming, ooey-gooey but not over-sweet, life philosophies galore. I'm now entirely obsessed with her mom Greta & her care packages (not sure if I would rather work for Greta or for Christina- can they please start a company together so I can work for them both??). I'm now fully committed to baking cakes for ALL celebratory occasions - big, small & everywhere in-between - and to the ongoing crazy scientist/ food inventor approach which Christina brings to her work and her personal life. Her "Chef's Table" biopic gave me a glimpse into the woman behind the business, and now I feel like this book gave me someone whom I now consider a mentor/ role model from afar.

In a world where it's difficult to hear anything over the shouts of the toxically "positive vibes only" privileged Instagram influencer and the death drums of this pandemic-ravaged, politically-polarized & vastly disparate world in which we find ourselves at the end of 2021, Christina's heartfelt manifesto about cultivating joy in all its forms, even in the most bleak of circumstances, by bringing it to others who need it even more than we do, resonates to the core.

There's something she shares at the end of one of her chapters (I can't officially share it as a direct quote since this book is not yet "done" & could still change) that talks about the importance of seeing a need, or a void, in the world, and creating the solution, the perfect-sized puzzle piece, to fill that void.

I believe she has done this with her ever-expanding Milk Bar empire, and now, with this beautiful book. Thank you for refusing to be anyone other than you, CT. I'm inspired to be even more me because of you being you.

*I received an advance NetGalley ARC courtesy of Rodale, Inc in exchange for my honest review*

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Sometimes it’s more than just a cookie.
Christina Tosi shares her heartwarming wisdom to making the world sweeter, beyond confections. A memoir that warms the heart more than the oven, Dessert Can Save the World has the potential to do precisely that.
Tosi is an icon in the dessert world, not only for her indulgent creations that light the coziness of nostalgia we didn’t know we missed but also for her tenacity as an industry leader. A very approachable industry leader who you want to be your best friend so you can share your dirty dessert secrets with. Frozen chocolate covered raspberry jel-rings? I feel so seen.
Christina Tosi is dessert saving the world.

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Dessert Can Save the World is full of fun stories and simple recipes make for a fun and decorative book to have in your collection!

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I loved this book! I own all of Christina Tosi’s cookbooks and have been a Milk Bar fan for years, but dessert fan my entire life. This book is a complete love letter to dessert that chronicles how Milk Bar came to be and how Tosi built her empire. She shares all of the ways she worked her way up in a male dominated field with kindness, grit, and a colorful headscarf. This was such a joyful read, which was surprisingly refreshing for a memoir. Despite all she has accomplished, Tosi isn't jaded by her success and is ready to be dessert BFFs with anyone she comes across. If only we could all swap our dirty dessert secrets back and forth! Honey Nut Cheerios mixed into vanilla ice cream for me!

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