2022 Edible Book Festival

Winning Entries

Best in Show

  1. Frog & Toad Together Again
  2. A Pho Love Story

Best Literary

  1. Please Look After This Bear
  2. The Alchemist

Best Effort

  1. A Pho Love Story
  2. Frog & Toad Together Again

Best Vegan

  1. The Cake Guide to Sugar Maples
  2. The Dark is Rising

Best Content Creator

  1. Alice in Wonderland
  2. Jurassic Park


  1. Realizing Fiction
  2. Grapes of Wrath

Tip: You can view the exhibition in full screen mode by selecting the 3 vertical dots in the bottom bar and choose “Enter Full Screen”

Vote for the Winners

One ballot may be submitted per respondent.

View Full Gallery

The gallery on Flickr includes a few images that were excluded from the online exhibition.

Edible Book Festival

The Sheridan Libraries Edible Book Festival began in 2014 and is now a highly-anticipated Johns Hopkins tradition. It is one of many such festivals that take place around the world on or around April 1 to celebrate books, art, food, and culture. In our festival, edible books are desserts inspired by literary titles, characters, or authors. Contestants are encouraged to combine word play with books, decoration, and ingredients.

Edible Book Festivals began with the Books2Eat website in 2000 and are now celebrated internationally. The event was created to commemorate the birthday of gastronome and author Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin. April Fools’ Day is also the perfect day to eat your words.

The Sheridan Libraries Book Festival is sponsored by the Winston Tabb Special Collections Research Center.

2022 Festival Guidelines

Contest Entry

Register via online entry form before 12pm, Monday, April 4, 2022

  • Eligibility: Open to all Johns Hopkins affiliates (students, faculty, staff, donor groups, and alumni).
  • Entry requirements:
    • The dessert must be made from edible materials.
    • The dessert does not have to look like a book; it simply needs to be inspired by one.
    • You must provide images of your edible book, your recipe, and a one-sentence description about your entry. Optional: You may submit up to two short videos showing the making of your edible book or a narrative discussing what inspired your entry. Your supporting content will be showcased on our Edible Book Festival online gallery.
    • Please follow the JHU Social Compact when creating your edible book.
  • Deadline: All supporting content must be received by 12pm on Monday, April 4, 2022. You will receive a link to where you can upload your content after you register for the festival.

Questions or Comments? Email Heidi Herr at hherr1@jhu.edu and follow @jhuspecialcollections on Instagram to see highlights from previous festivals.


All attendees may judge submissions. Winners are chosen by popular vote.

Award Categories

Best in Show

This edible book has it all: creativity, polish, and flare. From the written statement to the photos to the edible book itself, this dessert is the James Beard Award and the Nobel Prize for Literature combined!

Best Literary Theme

Let’s face it. You want to read instead of eat the book! This edible book perfectly embodies its literary inspiration or entices you to move the book to the top of your summer reading list.

Best Effort

This category represents the spirit of the edible book festival! While it may not be the ace of cakes, this edible book is replete with charm and discernible effort, like the first draft of a promising writer!

Best Vegan

You can’t believe it’s not butter . . . or a book!

Best Content Creator

Their edible book knows how to strike a pose. Whether it’s imaginative staging or photography that would make the foodie community of Instagram collectively drool, the content looks like an ad campaign for the Great British Bake-Off!


The edible book entry most likely to put a smile on your face! Clever, humorous, or super-silly, it makes your stomach roar with laughter and rumble with delight.

2021 Exhibition Gallery

Tip: You can view the exhibition in full screen mode by selecting the 3 vertical dots in the bottom bar and choose “Enter Full Screen”

2021 Winning Entries

Best Vegan

  1. Give a Mouse a Cookie
  2. Drive Your Plow over the Bones of the Dead


  1. Murder on the Orient Express
  2. To Kill a Mockingbird

Best Content

  1. Brave New World
  2. 1984

Best Effort

  1. Harry Potter & the chamber of secrets
  2. Harold & the Purple Crayon

Best Literary Theme

  1. The Mouse that Roared
  2. Divine Comedy

Best in Show

Sponsored by the Friends of the Libraries Advisory Council

  1. Rainbow Fish
  2. The Martian

Photo Albums on Flickr


display of a cake and tea set









  • Who can compete?

    Students, faculty, staff, members of donor groups, and alumni of Johns Hopkins University are invited to enter the competition. The general public is welcome to attend the event and cast a vote for their favorites.

  • May I enter more than one dessert?

    Of course you may! This is especially important because some contestants like to participate with their friends, but also want to try to make a literary-themed dessert on their own.

  • What about allergens?

    In 2022 only you will be eating your dessert, so no need to alert us of potential allergens. Just be careful to make something you will be safe eating!

  • Can I change books after submitting an entry form?

    Yes. Please contact Heidi Herr at hherr1@jhu.edu by April 1 with any book changes.

  • Do I need to be present to win?

    No, you do not need to be present to win. Participants will be contacted via email with the list of winners and a link to where you can download photographs from the event. Winners can pick up their prize from Special Collections, receive it through campus mail, or receive it mailed to their home address.

  • How will I submit my entry?

    Registered participants will receive an email with a link to the submission form and instructions. Submissions are due April 4, 2021.

  • What file formats are accepted?

    Photos: .jpg files with a 2MB maximum (up to 5)

    Videos: .mp4 files with a 20MB and 2min maximum (up to 2)

  • What can I win?

    Prizes include a selection of locally-made sweets and gift cards to area restaurants and cafes. First place prizes are valued at about $60, and second place prizes are valued at about $40.