I love eating out and trying new foods but being a vegan in southern Louisiana means that’s not always easy. Yes, I can find something to eat almost anywhere. I have a list of places in town that I love (thank you, Chipotle and our local vegan bakery) but for everywhere else, it’s usually some combination of salad and sides. That’s why I depend so much on cookbooks. I can try and experiment at home using ingredients I know and trust. Below are a few of my favorite and most loved cookbooks. I’ve bolded the recipes featured in the photos of dishes I’ve made.
Isa Does It by Isa Chandra Moskowitz
This is definitely one of my favorites. When thinking “I want to make something comforting and delicious”, this is the first book I pick up. There are big colorful pictures and even the recipes have beautiful layouts. Also…this book has a chapter with nothing but dishes in bowls (aside from soup and salad). Put something in a bowl and it automatically tastes better than something on a plate.
Tried and Loved: Butternut Bisque, Ancho-Lentil Tacos, Puffy Pillow Pancakes, Carrot Cake Pancakes, Curried Peanut Sauce Bowl, Smoky Incan Stew, Tempeh Meatballs and Spaghetti, Beefy Asparagus Stir Fry, Tempeh Orzilla, Seitan & Broccoli with Pantry BBQ Sauce, Pesto Cauliflower Pasta
Chloe’s Vegan Desserts and Chloe’s Kitchen by Chloe Coscarelli
These two were my first ever vegan cookbooks that I bought before I even adopted the lifestyle. I’ve had them for years and have made quite a few things from each.
If you’re looking for healthy treats, Chloe’s Vegan Desserts is not the way to go. There are a few lighter options but most are rich in sugar and oil. They’re also delicious. I’ve gotten so many compliments from non-vegans on how good these cupcakes and cookies are.
Chloe’s Kitchen is on the healthier side for appetizers, sides, entrees, etc. The recipes use easy-to-find ingredients and there are a lot of all encompassing and well-rounded meals. My all time go-to quick comfort food recipe (my husband and I both love it), Orange You Glad I Made Crispy Tofu, is probably one of my most used pages out of all of my cookbooks.
Tried and Loved (Chloe’s Vegan Desserts): Salted Caramel Cupcakes, Vanilla Birthday Cupcakes, Raspberry Lemon Tart, Sugar Cookies, Chewy Ginger-Molasses Cookies, Cookie Icing, Peanut Butter Cookies, Vermont Maple Cookies, Chocolate Chip Cookies
Tried and Loved (Chloe’s Kitchen) : Yoga Cookies, Sea Salt Toffee Bars, Pineapple Not So Fried Rice, Orange You Glad I Made Crispy Tofu, Mongolian BBQ Seitan, Indian Buffet Trio, Caribbean Vegetables with Coconut Rice and Plantains, Penne alla Vodka with the Best Garlic Bread in the World, Peanutty Perfection Noodles, Best-Ever Macaroni and Cheese, Avocado Pesto Pasta, LA Style Chimichurri Tacos, Grilled Pesto Pizza with Sweet Potatoes Kale and Balsamic Reduction, Sea Salt and Vinegar French Fries, Maple Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Toasted Hazelnuts, Cheesy Broccoli Soup in Sourdough Bread Bowls, Warm Spinach Artichoke Dip, Garlic Knots….whew…
This was another of my first cookbooks. I love this one because it has a little bit of everything. Smoothies, juices, granola bars, desserts, pasta, soup, veggies, oatmeal, and a ton more. Her recipes are also really allergen friendly so if you or a loved one has a nut, soy, or gluten allergy then this is definitely where I would start. Also, the pictures are beautiful. Flipping through, you’ll want to try everything.
Tried and Loved: Apple Pie Oatmeal, Chakra Caesar Salad with Nutty Herb Croutons, Roasted Beet Salad with Hazelnuts, Thyme, and Balsamic Reduction, Eat Your Greens Detox Soup, Sweet Potato and Black Bean Enchiladas with Avocado-Cilantro Cream Sauce, Our Favorite Veggie Burger, Broccoli and Cashew Cheese Quinoa Burrito, 15-Minute Creamy Avocado Pasta, Luxurious Tomato Basil Pasta, Portobello Steak Fajitas, Lentil-Walnut Loaf, Roasted Rainbow Carrots with Cumin-Coriander Tahini Sauce, Pan Seared Garlic Tofu, Lightened Up Crispy Baked Fries, Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Fingerling Potatoes and Rosemary, Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes with Easy Mushroom Gravy, Fall Harvest Butternut Squash with Almond-Pecan Parmesan, Classic Glo Bar
This is a newer addition and I’ve made enough from it to know it will be a favorite. I love that the chapters are divided into common misconceptions about veganism. Like the chapter called “Tofu Doesn’t Taste Like Anything” has a bunch of deliciously sauced and seasoned tofu recipes. This is great if you need to take a dish to a potluck or have carniverous family and friends coming over for dinner. The Tempeh Bacon Mac N Cheese with Pecan Parmesan recipe is worth the book. I have a feeling this is going to be right up there with the Orange You Glad I Made Crispy Tofu (from Chloe’s Kitchen) for favorite comfort food recipes.
Tried and Loved: Tempeh Bacon, Homemade Seitan (way better than store bought), Tempeh Bacon Mac N Cheese with Pecan Parmesan, Broccoli and Quinoa Tabbouleh with Tahini-Herb Dressing, Falafel Tacos with Sriracha-Tahini Sauce, Thai Seitan Satay with Spicy Peanut Dipping Sauce
I have a few more cookbooks that I want to delve into a little deeper before discussing them. Books I’ve tried two or fewer recipes from. Once I have a better feel for them, I’ll feature them here.