Meatless Monday: My Vegetarian Bookshelf’s Greatest Hits

I thought we’d do a little something different this Meatless Monday, and give a shout-out to the vegetarian cookbooks that have inspired us.

Lately, as you may have noticed, I’ve been quite enamored with “Viva Vegan”, the answer to a Latin cuisine lover-turned-vegan’s prayers. Seriously, I’d like to take a few weeks and make every single recipe in this book. I’ve already posted about the Black Bean Empanadas and the Amaranth and Roasted Chile Polenta, and made a few others as well, like the Potato-Chickpea Enchiladas. Out of this world. I just can’t say enough about it.

Next up: “Entertaining for a Veggie Planet” by Didi Emmons – I have yet to make anything that hasn’t turned out wonderful. Her Butternut Squash, Sage and Goat Cheese Pizza (a.k.a. “Dinner for Henry”) is particularly magnificent. Scattered throughout are helpful hints and witty sidebars.

Then there’s the equally inspired “Vegan Planet” by Robin Robertson. You won’t feel that anything is missing from these delectable recipes that span the globe in origin. There’s something (many somethings, I’m sure) in here for everyone, no matter their restrictions or lack thereof.

Here’s a classic for you: “The Moosewood Cookbook” by Mollie Katzen. A revised oldie but a goodie – if you haven’t poked around in it lately, give it another look. There’s some wonderful stuff in there. The Hungarian Mushroom Soup is my personal favorite – and not just because it’s one of the first things Donna and I shared in our culinary adventures!

No such list of mine would be complete without “Vegan with a Vengeance”. This is a must-have from the original Post Punk Kitchen babes, one of whom is also the author of “Viva Vegan” above, take note. They also created “Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World”, the epic “Veganomicon”, and most recently, “Vegan Cookies Take Over the World”, for which I have already written to Santa. But “Vegan with a Vengeance” is the original masterpiece – if you’re getting only ONE fully vegan cookbook, I say get this one. Serious vegan eats with attitude, nutrition and plenty of flavor. Try the Mango-Ginger Tofu or the Chickpea & Spinach Curry.

Deborah Madison’s “Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone” is like “The Joy of Cooking” for vegetarians. Or perhaps even a “Mastering the Art of Vegetarian Cooking”. She’s that awesome. Not only are the recipes sublime, the instruction is excellent and thorough. Try the Winter Greens with Fennel and Mushrooms, the Onion Galette With Mustard Cream, and (perfect timing) the Summer Squash Gratin with Herb Bechamel. I can’t resist quoting one Amazon review: “I am a carnivore that howls at the moon over fresh kill and I would still call this my favorite cookbook as all of the recipes are unfailingly delicious and healthy.” Perfect sentiment for the Meatless Monday movement, n’est-ce pas?

And now for the winning combination I’ve been hoping for: vegan PLUS gluten-free, so I don’t have to do all the substituting an experimenting myself! Not that I mind SO much – I do write a food blog, after all, and thus obviously like tinkering around in the kitchen, but sometimes it’s just nice to not have to exert oneself quite so much. Is that so wrong? Anyway, here’s the self-explanatory “Gluten-Free Vegan Cookbook”. This one is new-ish to me, but definitely has a lot of gems already. My favorites so far are the Eggplant Rollatini and the Yam Enchiladas with Pomegranate Sauce.

And finally, while it certainly doesn’t compare to offerings above, we still have to share our own little book, Anne and Donna’s first collaboration, “101 Things To Do With Tofu”. You know about the chili, but there are other gems in there as well. Check out the Tomato-Onion Chowder – my favorite soup of all time, the Rebirth by Chocolate, and the Tangy Thai Peanut Dip, at the very least. All guaranteed hits – and lots of fun to make people guess the ‘secret ingredient’. (They never do.)

Hope you made a new discovery or two here today! Should you decide to check out any of these delectable selections for yourself, if you use the links provided, we do get a little referral fee. What are some of your favorite vegetarian cookbooks? Please chime in!

— posted by Anne


  1. says

    We absolutely love Veganomicon by Isa Chandra Moskowitz & Terry Hope Romero… it’s a great book for people cooking dishes for people who think Vegan food can’t taste good.

    Because these recipes are DELICIOUS!

  2. says

    What a great line up of cookbooks! I don’t have a vegetarian cookbook at all to sing praises about, but you’ve given me some wonderful choices to fix that problem. Very interested in the book by Deborah Madison. Thanks for the informative post.


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