Almost half of those glossy new cookbooks bought as Christmas presents will go unread, according to a survey that shows home cooks are being put off by expensive ingredients and complicated recipes.
Researchers discovered the typical adult owns 10 cookbooks, but on average four of them will never have been used.
They also discovered cooks are going online more and more to find the right recipes, rather than wade through their cookbooks.
The survey of 2,000 UK adults found two-thirds (67pc) said they find recipes intimidating with Heston Blumenthal (right) and Gordon Ramsay mentioned for complicated cooking, while Jamie Oliver and Delia Smith were praised for their simplicity.
The survey, commissioned by Italian food company Sacla, found 35pc of people said they were put off by the cost of ingredients, while 29pc said recipes were too complicated.
More than a quarter (27pc) said hard-to-find ingredients stopped them using the books and more than half (53pc) said they now find recipes online based on what they have got in.
Clare Blampied, MD of Sacla, said: "The Italians have taught us that simple recipes featuring four or five key ingredients are the key to successful every day cooking.
"Perhaps it's time to learn from them and de-clutter our kitchens of complicated books we don't use."