Vegan Cookbooks for Everyone

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Vegan Cookbooks for Everyone

Recipes for vegans, carnivores and everyone in between!

Calling all fruit and veggie lovers! These are the cookbooks for you. Whether you’re vegan or not, the cookbooks listed below are full of delicious, healthful recipes that are waiting for you to try out. If you’re new to being vegan, the books below will be a great way to start.

If you’re an experienced vegan, these cookbooks might become your tried-and-true favorites, as they have become mine. They will serve as wonderful resources in your arsenal of vegan cooking knowledge. Each book is a celebration of fruit, vegetables, and whole foods you can recognize. The recipes are so yummy you’ll probably forget about those so-called “missing” ingredients, animal products.

The Joy of Vegan Baking by Colleen Patrick-Goudreau

In The Joy of Vegan Baking, Patrick-Goudreau busts the myth that you can’t bake without animal products like milk, butter and eggs. Not only is it possible, it’s downright delicious. The author provides a clear and comprehensive explanation about why these ingredients are unnecessary and even harmful to ourselves and our planet.

The author is a vegan cooking instructor, and her vast experience and talent in this area is evident throughout the book. The author fully explains the concepts behind vegan baking so that you can become a pro too. Bakers both new and experienced will find the wealth of information provided in this book helpful.

The recipes are nearly foolproof, as the author was careful not to leave anything out of her recipes. At the same time, she avoids talking down to the reader. 
It’s a must-have book for any vegan chef, and you would never guess that the recipes contain no animal products.

The Oh She Glows Cookbook by Angela Liddon

When Angela Liddon began her journey to health through a whole foods, plant-based diet, she chronicled her transformation and her discoveries in vegan cooking on her blog. Her blog grew more and more popular, leading her to pen The Oh She Glows Cookbook

There is much to discover in Liddon’s cookbook, with 10 breakfast recipes, 11 recipes of smoothies, juice and tea, 8 appetizers (including a most delicious strawberry-mango guacamole), 8 salad recipes (that will actually keep you full), 7 soup recipes, 15 entrees, 9 sides, 9 power snacks, 11 desserts, and 27 homemade staples, such as oat flour and roasted garlic. The recipes are often surprisingly simple and easy to follow. 

Like her blog, beautiful pictures of food tempt us left and right; nearly every recipe has a picture to go with it. 

It is easy to forget you are eating vegan with this cookbook. Lovers of creamy pasta (and their stomachs) will rejoice with decadent recipes like Avocado Pasta and Cauliflower Pasta, which are both very simple to make. Liddon is obviously a lover of chia seeds, and after seeing so many pictures of amazing looking chia seed dishes, you may find yourself adding new ingredients to your diet like this. Established vegans trying to spice things up, or anyone looking to revolutionize their eating habits, will wonder where this cookbook has been all their lives.

Thug Kitchen: Eat Like You Give a F*ck

When it comes to vegan cooking, the authors of Thug Kitchen believe in skipping all the froo-froo stuff and getting straight to business. Fruits and vegetables are just plain good, and you should eat them now. Thug Kitchen is full of humor, colorful language, and it is guaranteed make cooking fun. Plus, the recipes are full of healthful ingredients that are just so tasty it would be absurd not to eat them all up.

The authors want to get rid of the idea that eating healthy is only for fancy people. We all deserve to treat our bodies better, and it’s actually not hard. As they say, “It’s easier to saute kale with some garlic than it is to eat pizza bites without burning the <expletive> out of your tongue.”

This book has the beginner cook in mind. They keep it simple; most recipes are done in only 3 or 4 steps, and the amount of ingredients required is kept to a minimum, too. They often offer ways you can substitute ingredients when you don’t feel like running to the grocery store for that one missing item. When a recipe calls for a less-commonly known ingredient, you’ll find an asterisk beside it that leads to a helpful tip. For instance, for nutritional yeast, you’ll find the following footnote: “WTF? See page 10” - where there’s an explanation of what it is, including where you can find it in the grocery store.

The authors answer questions like “What does organic mean?” and they don’t forget to cover the basics like how to saute peppers and roast garlic. Plenty of practical advice is offered, such as, “Don’t go to some buttoned-up juice bar across town for an expensive-ass neon green smoothie that tastes like grass clippings." Make your own and make it taste how you like it.

The mission of this book is to prove that eating healthy doesn’t have to be complicated or pretentious, and it succeeds. The humor and can-do attitude of this book will make you want to get into the kitchen immediately and start cooking up the healthiest, tastiest food you've ever made. And how many cookbooks out there can actually make you laugh out loud? 

But I Could Never Go Vegan!: 125 Recipes That Prove You Can Live Without Cheese, It's Not All Rabbit Food, and Your Friends Will Still Come Over for Dinner by Kristy Turner 

Kristy Turner’s But I Could Never Go Vegan! is the perfect cookbook for anyone curious about migrating to a more plant-based diet. It makes veganism accessible and assuages commonly-held fears. Each chapter is a typical complaint of vegan nay-sayers, such as “I Could Never Give Up Cheese!”, “Where Would I Get My Protein?” and “You Can’t Bake Without Butter or Eggs!” Seasoned vegans will be humored, as they are already used to hearing these gripes.

In the “It’s All Rabbit Food” chapter, Turner proves that decadent meals like nachos, onion rings, and chili fries are possible on a vegan diet. Yes, even vegans can indulge, and these typically unhealthy meals are at least made a little more healthy with their vegan versions. 

The chapter titled “No Way. I’m Italian (or Southern/German/Mexican/French)!” provides recipes inspired by cuisines you wouldn’t normally think would align with a vegan diet. In “My Friends Won’t Want to Come Over For Dinner,” Turner shows us that vegans can have fancy dinner parties too, with recipes like Carrot Cashew Pate and Tofu & Avocado Tartare.
There are a number of recipes that are renditions of meat dishes, for example, “BLT & Avocado Soft Tacos” and “BBQ Bacon Burgers,” but there are also plenty of recipes celebrating vegetables for what they are in the chapter “But I Hate [Insert Vegetable Here].”  

Recipes are typically simple and don’t require an inordinate amount of time to prepare or tracking down hard-to-find ingredients. If you’re really pressed for time, there’s even the chapter “Vegan Cooking Is Too Hard” which proves, of course, that it’s not. Symbols adorn every recipe to indicate whether it is gluten-free, soy-free, nut-free, can be made to go, or requires advance preparation. There are also handy guides on how to use ingredients like tofu, tempeh, making homemade nut butter, cooking grains and beans, and using different types of flour, sweeteners, and oils. It's the perfect cookbook for anyone who is curious but perhaps a little wary about becoming vegan. Of course, if you are considering transitioning to a vegan diet, Turner recommends taking baby steps. This cookbook would be a great way to start.

The 30-Minute Vegan: Over 175 Quick, Delicious, and Healthy Recipes for Everyday Cooking by Mark Reinfeld and Jennifer Murray

While the other books listed above contain plenty of colorful pictures,  this is a book that gets straight down to business. And less pictures means more room for lots and lots of recipes; there are over 175 recipes and the best part is they can all be completed in 30 minutes or less.

Many recipes are raw and don’t require any cooking at all - which is why they can be prepared so quickly! All you have to do is toss together a bunch of delicious, wholesome food. There are also plenty of suggestions for recipe modifications. If you don’t have a particular ingredient or love something else, you’ll be encouraged to try it your way.

The book focuses on whole foods in their natural state and minimizing the use of processed and packaged foods. Eating locally is also emphasized, as the authors point out that in-season foods grown locally are often the freshest, most delicious and nutritious food available. So if you love your fruits and vegetables and don’t need a lot to dress them up, this book will provide you tons of new ideas for eating them.

Plenty: Vibrant Vegetable Recipes from London's Ottolenghi by Yotam Ottolenghi
Consider this book an "extra," because it is not a vegan cookbook. It is a vegetarian cookbook, and the author discloses that he is not even a vegetarian himself. However, he is a serious lover of vegetables. Many of his recipes do include butter or cheese, but a seasoned vegan will know how to omit or substitute these ingredients (or simply skip some recipes) to suit their needs.

Some of the recipes don't require any changes to be vegan, and for many, it's as simple as using a non-dairy butter. His appreciation of vegetables is quite clear, and for any vegetable lover, the most difficult thing about this book will be knowing where to start. The author has a great deal of knowledge about how to cook a vegetable to perfection and bring out all the best flavors, so it would be a shame to miss out on this book just because it's not strictly vegan.

Some recipes do call for specialty ingredients that may be hard to find and/or expensive. This is a good cookbook for the chef that’s looking to go to the next level and experiment with their vegetables.