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The Best Vegan Cookbooks For Beginners

So, you want to go vegan, or you just went vegan, and you don’t know what to cook? Or you’re not sure where to begin? Perhaps you’re not much into cooking and want some easy and quick recipes, or maybe you are an amazing chef who is eager to try out new creations.

Either way, it’s always good to have a few handy cookbooks on the kitchen shelves. Whether you’re a chef, newbie, amateur, or a spontaneous cook who likes to throw things in here and there, these cookbooks are for everyone, the best vegan cookbooks for beginners. In this post I will cover four cookbooks that have easy and uncomplicated recipes, and you do not always need to go on a scavenger’s hunt to find the ingredients. I’ll cover Vegan Mac and Cheese, by Robin Robertson, No Fuss Vegan, by Roz Purcell, Vegan Meal Prep, by Zara Elby, and Plant-Based on a Budget, by Toni Okamoto.

Vegan Mac and Cheese, Robin Robertson

As the title suggests, going vegan doesn’t mean you have to give up those cheesy dishes you used to love. You can keep on loving and enjoying them. Vegan mac and cheese is pretty easy to make and it is creamy, cheesy, and yummy. The title for this cookbook is appropriate, since Robin Robertson covers several meals that we have grown up with and we are wont to let go of. Guess what, you don’t have to let go of them, and you’ll see how in Robin’s recipes.

One more thing that’s emphasized in this book is time. No one likes to spend all day cooking, and Robin’s recipes are designed to spend minimal time in the kitchen. For most of us, who lead busy lives, this is a plus point πŸ™‚

There is a plethora of vegan recipes (more than 50), such as Cheesy Primavera Mac, Buffalo Caulifower Mac, Peas with Mushroom Bacon, vegan hot dogs, a veggie-filled pasta dish, etc.

β€œAnything you can cook, I can cook better vegan,” the author says. β€œI can recreate anything.”

No Fuss Vegan, Roz Purcell

“Ideal for people who love their grub with a wholesome twist” (Food and Wine Magazine)

no-fuss-vegan

Roz Purcell is a firm believer in fueling your body right. And she has a point, doesn’t she? Our bodies are complex machines and they need the right fuel. This cookbook includes breakfast, snacks, lunch, dinner, and dessert recipes. Corn fritters, vegan black pudding, shortbread, sausage rolls, “no fuss” tangine, and miso aubergine are the author’s favorites.

Miso aubergine, sounds delicious! I love the taste of miso and I love aubergine. You can’t go wrong with that.

Vegan black pudding, that’s definitely something on my to-do (or to-make) list.

It’s like Roz said: “We all know how to cook with meat, chicken, fish and eggs, so I wanted to create a book that championed easy and accessible vegetable-based meals for everyone.”

This is Roz Purcell’s third cookbook, and her previous two books were nominated for Cookbook of the Year at the Irish Book Awards. No Fuss Vegan will be launched on January 2, 2020; hence, it’s not available for purchase yet. When it’s out, I will definitely let you know! πŸ™‚ So, mark your calendar, and start the new year with a healthy, no fuss, and easy cookbook.

Vegan Meal Prep, Zara Elby

Yep, this one makes life a lot easier, because – as the title of this book suggests – these vegan recipes can be prepared ahead of time. You can prep in the weekends or perhaps the night before, and save lots of time. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, and smoothies are featured in this cookbook. The meals that you prep can be taken on the go and they can also be frozen.

So, all in all, this is perfect for the beginner, especially when you’re a little busy. The meals are plant-based, healthy, easy to make, and they save time.

Plant-Based on a Budget, Toni Okamoto

Aha! I think we all like the sound of that title. Sometimes we all need to budget, right? No one likes it, I sure don’t, but there are times when it’s best to budget our expenses. And when it comes to food and saving money, we often tend to buy unhealthy stuff. Budgeting and eating healthy goes together though, and this book will show you exactly how πŸ™‚

Not only does Toni Okamoto share her awesome recipes, but she also gives you useful tips on saving money and time, when out shopping, when preparing meals, and so on. In general, the recipes are guides, and the author recommends – like I always do πŸ˜‰ – that you improvise; for example, change certain ingredients for something you already have in your kitchen pantry, and experiment. Be bold πŸ™‚

β€œWhen I became a vegan in 1987, I was making $2,500 a year and spending $10 a week on food. And amazingly, I ate well! This book shows how easy it is to eat well and be a vegan without spending a ton of money.” Moby, singer and songwriter

Conclusion

All four cookbooks are great to have for a vegan newbie. I love how they all focus on saving time in the kitchen. Making vegan food is not as hard as it seems. And it’s time to let go of the myth that “eating healthy is expensive”, it is not. There is no better time than now to become vegan. The food has so much more variety; restaurants are now much more open to featuring vegan dishes or vegan variations on some meals; supermarkets offer a much wider range of plant-based products for the vegan kitchen; there is a long list of vegan companies that offer delicious meat substitutes; and there are many vegan cookbooks to guide you and give you ideas.

When I became vegan, hardly any of the above mentioned points were available. That is why I learned how to make everything, like sausages, burgers, roasts, pies, cakes, puddings, chocolates, etc. The good thing is that I love to cook, but not everyone does.

I hope that these four cookbooks have given you some ideas. Any one of them will give you plenty of recipes to try out. If you have any questions, please let me know in the comments.

Spread the love

Christine

42 Comments

  1. Nice one Christine. This post is not bad at all. Actually,being a vegan isn’t as easy as many people viee it to be. One does have the contemplating thoughts of what to eat and if one will not go against the diet. This are really good books and I like that you can give us an insight to each book. I will one out so maybe I too can enjoy some delicious food.

    • Hello,

      it may seem less easy when one is concerned or not sure about what to include in diets, but in time and with more experience it does get easier. What makes it so easy nowadays is the amount of information and the many vegan products that are available today, which wasn’t the case a little over ten years ago.

  2. Very good-looking website, clear, informative and easily approachable I would say. Also, article about vegan cookbooks for beginners was great and very informative. I eat only meat, fish, vegetables and seeds but I like to keep one and sometimes two vegan days in a week, nowadays even my son eats my vegan cooking so I have learned, not to be an expert in vegan cooking but enough to keep a son happy! However, I will take a further look at your website and explore if there would be some vegan soup recipes available. 

  3. I have been wanting to change my diet for a long time and I keep hearing about vegan. I see where you say that this cookbook is great for newbie Vegans and I appreciate that but what do you think the best way is to get started with this? Should I take it slow and make a few changes at a time or just make the decision and go with it, and for get the consequences or changes to my body that I might have issues with for the first week or two? What can I expect as I make this transition?

    • When you make the change, your body will feel it, you will feel better, and more energized. I suggest that you look at one of the cookbooks, since the recipes include all the required vitamins, proteins, and all the good fuel your body needs. 
      It’s hard to say if you should start slow or do it at once. Some people go with it at once, and others do it one step at a time. I’d say, do what you feel most comfortable with. When I became vegan I started feeling healthier, more energy, and I don’t easily get ill. There are many advantages. Make sure you have all the needed nutrients, that is important, but following these recipes or any other recommendations on my (or other vegan) blog, you will have lots of guidance and information. If there is anything else you like to ask, please let me know. πŸ™‚ 

  4. This books are priceless source of important information regarding a healthy diet. This is certainly going to help me achieve total veganism,  I’m just going let these books guide me and fill me with confidence  and consistency. I know that transitioning to veganism may seem like an impossible mission sometimes, but these books got me through it, and they will get you through it too.

  5. I am leaning towards vegan meal prep by  Zara Elby because meal prepping helps me tremendously since I cook for a large family. 
    My family is not vegan, but we go meat-free once a week, so it will be nice to be able to put together some new recipes for them. 

    I looked at the recipe you posted for Vegan cheese Fondue it looks divine I think we will have to try it very soon!

    • Hi, I also like the vegan meal prep, prepping helps a lot indeed, especially for a large family. 

      Thanks for trying out the fondue! I loved it πŸ™‚ 

  6. Hello Christine,

    I love animals. A long time ago I think one day decide to stop eating everything that comes from the animal kingdom. For what you have today, there are many meat substitutes in vegan food. 

    Reading your different recipes I see a wide variety of foods that are also to my liking. To want is power. We are a family made up of my wife and 2 daughters.

    How do I convince them, can you give me some advice? Thank you! Claudio

  7. Great post about vegan recipes. I will share this post with my sister who is vegan because she would love these recipes!  I was really entriqued by the vegan mac and cheese along with the buffalo cauliflower mac.  I also would love the vegan sausages.  Looks so yummy.  Thanks for sharing these.

    The Vegan Prep book definitely looks promising because I love to prep ahead.  

    Jay

    • Hi Jay,

      There are indeed some incredible vegan mac and cheese variations. There are so many I still have to try πŸ™‚

      I’m happy you’re sharing this with your sister. The prep book also looks great to me. Prepping ahead makes our weeks a lot easier, doesn’t it? πŸ˜‰ 

  8. Great post. This was a very helpful read and I am excited to try the vegan Mac and cheese. I am a huge fan of Mac and cheese and my girlfriend is a vegan. This will be great to allow me to cook for her. Hopefully she enjoys it! I will definitely have to check out some more recipes from those books!

  9. Thanks for giving so much insights into these books. This post cannot come at a much more better period than it has come right nowand I’m really delighted that you can open up the view about what the vegan life us and how to really maximize the food plans of vegans. Most people think that being a vegan is totally bad and getting food to eat might be a problem. Thankfully, you suggested all this books here. Thanks

    • Thank you 😊. It’s true that many people don’t realize how delicious vegan food is, but more people are becoming vegan every day and are sharing the love (and recipes 😉)

  10. Wow! Vegan foods are really great and I must say that it is very insightful to learn about. Being a vegan us fin and not as boring as people think. In fact, most of our foods are really fun to spice but it is totally based on the person cooking it and how they want it presented. Thanks for giving the summation on each of the books and I’m sure they would come in handy for me. Thumbs up

    • Thank you 😊 for your thumbs up! And I agree, being vegan is fun and the food is delicious 😊

  11. Hello dear, thanks for helping out with these really beautiful suggestions. I am currently on a keto diet, and I have been meaning to try soemthing else. So far, i have had great interest in vegan diet from all that I have read about it but I don’t really have an idea about the meals. Coming across this post and seeing these suggested cookbooks makes me really happy and I would love to get one of them and start my vegan diet soon.

    • That’s wonderful, Chloe πŸ™‚ And these cookbooks are really great, each one of them has awesome recipes. I like the prep one especially. 

  12. Hi Christina

    I have and will eat vegan food and have found that I have enjoyed them. Although I can never really convert to a vegan diet but I do not eat meat twice a week, where I could be vegan. You have come up with some wonderful cook books that can widen my horizon into meat free and dairy free dishes that I can make. I would say that I am  a competent cook, which can make a range of dishes, but have not really cooked any vegan dishes. As long as the recipes are easy to follow and use ingredients that are easy to find and not to expensive, then I will give it a try.

    I do not like long winded, complicated recipes that often fail. I  may have to buy one of these books.

    Thanks

    Antoni

    • I agree, longwinded recipes that look like difficult formulas can really put someone off of trying to make a new meal. I also prefer easy recipes and what I especially like about these is that they are also easy on the budget πŸ™‚ 

  13. I must confess I don’t like doing anything that concerns the kitchen, not my fault actually because I grew up in a home filled with ladies and I happened to be the only guy. Recently, I met my girlfriend and she loves cooking so I started joining her whenever she’s in the kitchen, I always make use of cooking books like the ones you mentioned in this article and they’ve been my guide since. These vegan cookbooks are really nice and detailed, simple to follow also. Thanks for sharing, its really going to be useful for me. I like it

    • Hello there,

      Yes, not everyone likes to cook. Lucky you to have a girlfriend who likes to cook πŸ™‚ πŸ˜‰ And it’s great that you’re joining her in the kitchen. These cookbooks will certainly be a great help πŸ™‚ 

  14. Vegan diet have been one of my favorites from every form of diets I have tried since I got to start the dieting stuff. Currently I have my little princess who is just 12 years old telling me she wants to start a vegan diet and its really surprising to me. Sometimes I want to shout at her not to dream of it but I know the benefits of vegan diet so I’ll love to get her ome of these cookbooks so she can know what the diet contain. Thanks for sharing this wonderful post.

    • Many young people are going vegan now, which I think is wonderful. Those books will certainly be a nice addition to your kitchen and give you many ideas on what to prepare πŸ™‚ 

  15. Very informative post. My daughter and son in law tried Vegan for a while but have now lapsed into mainly vegetarian as it wasn’t always easy with their busy lifestyles. Recipe books like these will make their lives a bit easier, especially being able to prep ahead of time as they have a tendency to prep the weeks meals on a Sunday.

    I will tell her about these or maybe get a couple as extra Christmas gifts.

    Thank you for an interesting post. I will share on social media so others can enjoy reading it.

    • Hi Linda,

      I also like the prep cookbook. It will surely help your daughter and son-in-law πŸ™‚ And the recipes are easy and not time-consuming at all. 

      Thank you for sharing on social media! πŸ™‚ 

  16. I have been paying a lot more attention to my diet recently and trying to find an healthy diet, there are so many different recommendations on what to eat and what not to eat, what is healthy and what isn’t, but the one thing I have noticed is that most recommendations say that cutting out animal fat is best and for that reason I think it may be a good idea to give vegan meals a try, all of the ingredients are healthy so I may buy one of your book recommendations and see how it goes, thanks for sharing this post.

    • Hi Russ, that’s wonderful! These books are definitely a great help, they have many tips and easy recipes πŸ™‚

  17. Thank you so much for recommending a good cookbook for vegan. I started eating vegan just to improve my health and I do feel better and not bloated when I eat vegan. However I realize that when I cook, it turns out that I do not eat that healthy. I noticed that I ended up eating lots of fries! Technically it is vegan but health wise it is so bad for you. After noticing that I have to step up my game! (Maybe indulge in fries from time to time lol)  I will totally get vegan meal prep and  plant based on the budget πŸ™‚ Thanks again!!

    • Hi, 

      I also love fries πŸ˜‰ I don’t eat them that often, but I do love them. They are indeed not that healthy, but if you make them yourself and you use a healthy non- GMO oil it is not as bad as the ones that are sold in fast food places. I like to use grape seed oil for frying.

      Wishing you all the best on your vegan journey!

  18. Thanks for sharing this wonderful article, I’m just considering going vegan as I and my wife decided on it lately and I think this article will be of great help to us.  You’ve really got nice books here and I promise to get one as soon as possible. Not long ago I developed this love for animals and I made up my mind not to eat from them again, so this was what prompted me to suggest we going vegan to my wife. Making vegan food now won’t be a problem for me and my wife, all thanks to you.

    • Hello there!

      Congratulations on your decision to go vegan for the animals! These books will definitely help. 

      Thanks for visiting and getting one of the cookbooks πŸ™‚

  19. This post was exactly what I was looking for. It is my turn to host Thanksgiving this year and 2 of the people coming are vegetarians. They told me to cook as normal as they don’t want to inconvenience me, but I want to surprise them with a few holiday recipes. Hopefully one of these vegan cookbooks will give me some good ideas. I’m also going to look around your site a little bit longer. Thank you!

    • Hi Wendy, thank you! I’m sure your friends will love the surprise for Thanksgiving πŸ™‚ 

      And thanks for looking around on my site! There are more recipes and tips in various articles. I hope they are useful to you too πŸ™‚ 

  20. Hi, I enjoyed your article on The Best Vegan Cookbooks for beginners.  I try to cook more vegan recipes since eating meats have more cholesterol. The vegan Mac & Cheese sounds delicious.  My kids love Mac & Cheese.  This recipe would be perfect.  Do you have any good recipes for cauliflower?  I have tried a few but wasn’t a good recipe.  Thanks for sharing!

    Best Wishes ~ Margaret

    • Hi Margaret,

      There are some great cauliflower ideas, such as cauliflower rice and patties. I’ll start experimenting in my kitchen this weekend πŸ™‚ and I will let you know.

      Enjoy the Mac and Cheese with your kids! I’m sure it will be awesome πŸ™‚

  21. It’s really a fact that quite a number of people are considering joining the vegan train but what’s mainly holding them back is the fear of what to eat after the conversion. This article has done well by serving them with cookbooks on some vegan foods and this will serve as guide for them even if they don’t know how to cook. All the books are really amazing. It’s so thoughtful of you to share this article, even though I’m yet to find my way to the Vegan train, I hope I do sometimes and it’ll be of help to me.

    • Hello πŸ™‚

      Yes, these books are certainly a great help! I hope to see you on the vegan train soon too πŸ˜‰

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