The 13 Best Vegan Cookbooks In 2023

As we move further into 2023, the popularity of plant-based eating continues to grow, and so does the number of vegan cookbooks entering the market. From those focusing on innovative plant-based meats to those boasting indulgent desserts made with wholesome ingredients, there's no shortage of cookbooks for vegans and non-vegans alike. However, with so many options available, choosing which ones to add to your collection can be overwhelming.

To help you discover the best vegan cookbooks of the year, we've compiled a list of our top picks, where home cooks of any skill level and dietary preference will find something exciting. These vibrantly illustrated tomes are written by experienced chefs and authors, offering a diverse range of recipes across cultures that are not only delicious but also healthy and sustainable. So whether you're a novice to plant-based cooking and meal prepping or a seasoned vegan with a well-stocked pantry ready for some culinary experimentation, there is something for everyone in these books, and they are sure to inspire you to create wholesome meals in the year ahead.

The Simple Vegan Kitchen: Nutritionally Balanced, Easy and Delicious Plant-Based Meals for Daily Wellness by Lauren McNeill, RD, MPH

In her debut cookbook, Lauren McNeill, a plant-based dietitian, shares her evidence-based, mindful approach to vegan nutrition, making "The Simple Vegan Kitchen" a valuable resource for those wanting to make a lasting commitment to plant-based eating. McNeill breaks down the basics of vegan nutrition in an accessible way, prefacing each recipe with a "good source of" label.

One of the standout features of this book is McNeill's emphasis on intuitive eating, which promotes a healthy relationship with food and avoids labeling them as "good" or "bad." This is a refreshing departure from the diet culture promoted by many dietitians and makes this book an ideal choice for those looking to avoid restrictive eating practices. Her Balanced Plate approach, which promotes a sense of abundance, is key to a healthy relationship with food.

The recipes in this book are balanced, well-written, and cater to any skill level. A former picky eater herself, McNeill knows how to make vegetables appealing. The store-bought meat alternative-featuring recipes like Hearty Vegan Sausage Stew are rare, so you can rest assured that if your pantry is stocked with staple vegan ingredients, you cook your way through this book without an extra trip to the grocery store.

Fake Meat: Real Food for Vegan Appetites by Isa Chandra Moskowitz

"Fake Meat: Real Food for Vegan Appetites" is written by Isa Chandra Moskowitz, a seasoned cookbook author, chef, and restaurateur with decades of plant-based cooking under her belt. With over 125 recipes, the book provides a wide range of options for vegans looking to replicate meat-based dishes. The recipes could be divided into literal imitations of animal products such as Beefy Seitan and Pull-Apart Chick'n and inspired interpretations like Cauliflower Schnitz'l or Meaty Porcini Ramen with Runny Cashew Egg for those who prefer the taste of vegetables and mushrooms to shine through (and would rather avoid the gluten-heavy substitutes). In addition to meat substitutes, the book also features plant-based makeovers of eggs, seafood, and cheeses.

While some may find the use of "fancy" ingredients (essentially the seasonings and spices every vegan should have on hand anyway) and gluten-based substitutes to be a drawback, the book caters to any vegan cook regardless of their skill level or experience. The recipes are accompanied by bright, unpretentious photos that bring the dishes to life, as well as Isa's disclaimers about the texture and flavor, which allow readers to manage their expectations. The humorous anecdotes from her Jewish upbringing and being vegan at the turn of the century make this book a fun, heartwarming read. Overall, "Fake Meat" is a comprehensive cookbook that will appeal to venturesome cooks with well-stocked kitchens and those who live in places where meat alternatives aren't readily available.

Nourishing Vegan Every Day: Simple, Plant-Based Recipes Filled with Color and Flavor by Amy Lanza

Amy Lanza's debut, "Nourishing Vegan Every Day," will be a delightful addition to any cookbook collection, whether vegan or not. While luscious, vibrant photography is a huge part of its charm, the book features 65 easy-to-follow recipes for everyday meals and special occasions, as well as decadent desserts that are sure to impress. Although some recipes may be too involved for an "everyday" meal, there is a decent selection of hearty, straightforward recipes for those who prefer speedy, hands-off cooking. The book follows the standard vegan formulas, and Lanza includes her own detailed bowl-building how-to, which will be helpful for those who prefer recipe-free cooking.

While it may be a better fit for those who already have some experience with vegan cooking, the book provides a wide range of recipes, from basics like overnight oats and falafel to creative spins on your brunch favorites, such as Vegan Eggs Benedict and Smashed Peas on Toast with Garlicky Mushrooms. The author's Italian heritage is reflected in numerous pasta-based recipes, including Homemade Sweet Potato Gnocchi. As a helpful gesture towards cooks outside the U.S., Lanza includes conversions from cups to grams. And although nutrition information isn't provided, this can be a plus for those who want to steer clear of diet culture antics and live their best plant-based life.

Eat More Vegan: 80 Delicious Recipes Everyone Will Love by Annie Rigg

Any hedonistic plant-based cook with a penchant for grains and vegetables will appreciate "Eat More Vegan," the latest addition to Annie Rigg's extensive bibliography. The book's focus on whole foods rather than just replacing animal products results in stunning, nutritious dishes. And while Rigg's professional chef training shines through her choice of Indian and Southeast Asian-inspired ingredients and preparation methods, if you take a closer look at some of her especially fancy-sounding dishes, such as Chargrilled Courgettes with Cannellini Bean Puree and Lemon and Herb Dressing, you'll notice that they are far less intimidating than the names suggest.

Out of the 80 recipes featured in the book, only half are accompanied by photos, but they are of high quality and showcase nature's bounty in a visually stunning way. The recipes are well-balanced in terms of flavor and nutrition, and a separate section of the book is dedicated to homemade seasonings such as Pangrattato and Furikake that will inspire readers to steer away from store-bought varieties. Although cooking times are not included, Rigg's reassuring notes suggest that, for instance, the "Quick Suppers" are indeed quick to prepare. The inclusion of conversion charts and both U.S. and U.K. terminology ensures that readers can easily follow along. Overall, this cookbook is perfect for those unafraid of bold flavors and willing to stock their pantry with various oils, spices, and other ingredients characteristic of Indian, Asian, and Middle Eastern cuisines.

Plant-Based on a Budget Quick & Easy: 100 Fast, Healthy, Meal-Prep, Freezer-Friendly, and One-Pot Vegan Recipes by Toni Okamoto

If you're looking for a vegan cookbook that won't waste your time or money, "Plant-Based on a Budget Quick & Easy" by Toni Okamoto is an excellent choice. While Okamoto's first book emphasized saving money on plant-based meals, the sequel focuses on saving time. The recipes in this book are straightforward and use easily attainable ingredients that you can find at any grocery store.

From make-ahead breakfasts to one-pot meals and sheet pan dishes that can feed a family while keeping dishes to a minimum, the book is designed to make vegan cooking as stress-free as possible. The majority of the 100 recipes are ready in five steps or less, making it especially appealing for those who are overwhelmed by advanced vegan recipes. Additionally, the tips from recipe testers and the author herself are sprinkled throughout the book, providing honest feedback and ideas on how to elevate the flavors or cut the cooking time even further. Some standout dishes include Tater Tot Casserole, Sheet Pan Nachos, and Scalloped Potatoes, guaranteed hits with non-vegans. Dessert recipes are also included; all are uncomplicated and ready in an hour or less. However, baking recipes, such as Depression-Era Vanilla Cupcakes, are listed in cups instead of grams, which might be an issue for those who take their vegan baking seriously.

Blk + Vegan: Full-Flavor, Protein-Packed Recipes from My Kitchen to Yours by Emani Corcran

If you're looking for a beginner-friendly vegan cookbook full of comforting dishes, Emani Corcran's debut, "Blk + Vegan," is a great choice. Corcran's love of cooking and commitment to living a healthier life without sacrificing her favorite foods and flavors led her to create this protein-packed recipe collection that reflects her cultural roots. As a Black vegan recipe creator, Corcran brings her unique perspective to the world of plant-based cooking with dishes that draw inspiration from her heritage and plant-based fitness journey.

What sets "Blk + Vegan" apart from other vegan cookbooks is its emphasis on family and community. Corcran shares memories of the women in her family and their culinary traditions with every recipe, making it not only a cookbook but also a celebration of Black culture. Another standout feature is its focus on protein. Many people assume it's difficult to get enough protein on a vegan diet, but Corcran's Vegan Ribs and Smoky Pinto Beans show that it's not only possible but also delicious. "Blk + Vegan" includes a variety of breakfast, lunch, and dinner options, as well as snacks and desserts that are uncomplicated and bound to appeal to a wide range of tastes. From Vegan Jambalaya to Heart of Palm Ceviche, there's something for everyone, even those struggling with consistent plant-based eating.

Eat the Rainbow: Vegan Recipes Made with Love from Bo's Kitchen by Harriet Porterfield

We love to see an experienced, passionate, self-taught vegan cook share their secrets, and that's exactly what Harriet Porterfield, the creator of Bo's Kitchen, does in her new book, "Eat the Rainbow." Known for her vibrant, mouthwatering photography and versatile, uncomplicated recipes, Porterfield delivers on all fronts in this tome. From everyday essentials like homemade nut milks, vegan parm, and pizza dough to sweet and savory tarts and bowls, there's something for every stage of your plant-based journey. The recipes in the "Mindful Cakes and Bakes" section rely on baking ingredients you already know, and the measurements are provided both in metric and imperial units.

What makes this book stand out is a dedicated "Colorful Kids" section — although the author prefaces the book by saying people of all ages can enjoy her recipes, and we're sure that Dazzling Chocolate-Dipped Dates and Crispy BBQ cauliflower bites will indeed be fun to make and eat by everyone in the family. While the ingredients across all chapters are fairly simple and family-friendly, the stunning, masterful presentation shown in Porterfield's photographs will make you realize that simple doesn't have to be boring and that you can eat the rainbow, after all.

New Vegan Baking: A Modern Approach to Creating Irresistible Sweets for Every Occasion by Ana Rusu

Let's be honest: baking is hard. For most people, anyway. And when you take it one step further and remove animal products from the mix, creating satisfying, decadent desserts that will make you forget "the real thing" can be even more challenging. Fortunately, books like Ana Rusu's debut volume, "New Vegan Baking," are here to provide guidance and empowerment. The book contains both modern versions of traditional baked goods, such as Eton mess, and unconventional twists on well-known flavors, like Salted Caramel Boston Pie. What's more, some recipes are gluten, nut, soy, and refined-sugar free; some contain no baking, meaning people with allergies will find something for themselves in this book.

Thematically, it's broken down into six chapters, each highlighting a certain flavor profile, from the classic citrus, chocolate, and caramel, to spicy and even boozy. While often long, ingredient lists are kept simple; however, novice vegan bakers must be ready to work with ingredients like aquafaba and xanthan gum. Fortunately, their use is occasional, and when it happens, Russ justifies it. For readers on both sides of the Atlantic, each recipe is provided both in volume and weight measures. Additionally, the author offers brand recommendations for non-dairy products to ensure your batters, frostings, and custards turn out the way they should. Finally, the gorgeous photographs accompanying every recipe will make you crave everything you see.

The Veg Box: 10 Vegetables, 10 Ways by Stephen & David Flynn

For those who still think vegetables are bland and boring, the Flynn brothers' sixth book, "The Veg Box," offers over a hundred recipes that might just change your mind about this essential part of our diets. And if you think you've already seen all the tips you need when cooking with vegetables, think again: This book is a comprehensive study of common produce items, from nightshades, root vegetables, and mushrooms to various members of the cabbage family. Each chapter focuses on one vegetable, providing growing, buying, storing, and cooking tips.

Every recipe is labeled with the number of ingredients necessary, and most are focused on highlighting the main vegetable's flavor. Some recipes, such as Kale Pesto Pasta and Charred Courgette Reuben, call for store-bought alternatives like vegan sausage or cheddar cheese, but most dishes are strictly plant-forward, relying on unprocessed ingredients and umami-packed flavorings such as miso and tamari. The majority of the recipes can be made in under an hour and are perfect for weeknight meals. If you have a sweet tooth, recipes like Chocolate, Coffee, and Beet Cake or Carrot and Maple Granola might change your mind about using vegetables in desserts.

Overall, "The Veg Box" is an excellent resource for those who want to explore the vibrant world of vegetable cooking. It promotes a plant-forward philosophy that prioritizes local, seasonal produce and reduces food waste.

Best of Vegan: 100 Recipes That Celebrate Comfort, Culture, and Community by Kim-Julie Hansen

If you're one of Best of Vegan's two million followers on Instagram, this tome has likely already appeared on your feed. Its founder, Kim-Julie Hansen, has shown people how easy and delicious vegan cooking can be and has empowered them to live a more compassionate and healthy lifestyle since 2014. Best of Vegan has always celebrated its multicultural community of plant-based food creators, so a large portion of the new "Best of Vegan" cookbook is done in collaboration with various chefs, bloggers, and other passionate food creators.

One of the book's focal points is comfort food: In chapters under "I Don't Want Salad," you'll find ideas on how to turn bleak lunches into vibrant feasts. From Baja-style "Fish" Tacos and Jalapeño Popper Grilled Cheese to Red Wine Tempeh Pecan Bolognese-Style Pasta, the recipes in this book are bound to tantalize your tastebuds. If that sounds too intimidating, start with the "Vegan Basics" section. The book's wide array of creative plant-based takes on dishes from global cuisines — including Nigerian, Welsh, Brazilian, Afghan, Congolese, and many others — will leave even the most worldly home cooks coming back to its pages for more inspiration. A final charming feature of the book is the songs that go with each recipe, picked by their creators to add another sensory dimension to their personal offerings, all collected in a Spotify playlist.

The Vegan Week: Meal Prep Recipes to Feed Your Future Self by Gena Hamshaw

Gena Hamshaw's fourth book, "The Vegan Week," firmly focuses on meal prep. That isn't to say Instagram-worthy containers of neatly arranged food, per se. On the contrary, the author suggests you let go of any preconceived notions of the term and treat it as a mindful approach to eating that can with common food challenges, such as the monotony of home cooking or being forced to rely on takeout under the pressure of modern life. In the first few chapters of the book, Hamshaw, who experienced these struggles herself, provides meal prep-specific shopping, prepping, and cooking tips in addition to helping you plan your meals with handy algorithms presented as flowcharts.

Hamshaw's registered dietitian background shines through in the way the recipes are organized. The book is conveniently divided into chapters focusing on proteins, vegetables and starches, and nutritious condiments to go with them, as well as chapters devoted to breakfasts, snacks, and desserts. The ingredient lists are mostly undemanding, yet still capable of surprising you with their combinations, as seen in Lentil Apple Sage Patties and Salted Tahini Date Caramel Cups. As an added bonus, the author provides an "Ad-Libbing" section at the end of the book, which will help you improvise meals for weeks without prep. Overall, this book is a priceless resource for those who want to streamline their everyday plant-based cooking while keeping it interesting.

The Flavor Thesaurus: More Flavors: Plant-Led Pairings, Recipes, and Ideas for Cooks by Niki Segnit

Any self-respecting chef, recipe developer, and creative home cook should already own Nicki Segnit's 2010 all-encompassing bestseller aptly named "The Flavour Thesaurus," also known as the book that can expand your palate. The highly-awaited follow-up volume, "The Flavor Thesaurus: More Flavors," coming out in May 2023, focuses on plant-based ingredients and their combinations. Dubbed "reigning champion" of matching flavors by no other than Yottam Ottolenghi, in her new book Segnit will study and explain almost a hundred plant-based pairings and provide over 300 pages of notes, recipes, and tips that will inspire even the most skeptical meat eaters to experiment with vegan foods. 

If the mind-blowing success of her debut book tells us anything, with "More Flavors," we can expect more of Segnit's signature pairing of humor with science and history with personal anecdotes. This book will be perfect for those willing to invest in a well-researched, captivating read and explore the rich world of plant flavors and their creative yet practical applications.

Eating from Our Roots: 80+ Healthy Home-Cooked Favorites from Cultures Around the World: A Cookbook by Maya Feller, MS, RD, CDN

As a disclaimer for those adhering to a strictly plant-based diet, Maya Feller's "Eating from Our Roots" is far from being vegan or even vegetarian. However, it contains a wealth of recipes that are vegan-friendly, providing a plethora of options for home chefs who are passionate about getting creative with their plant-based meals. With its celebration of traditional and heritage foods from Black, Brown, Latinx, and Indigenous communities, as well as many other cuisines around the world (such as Jamaican, Indian, and West African, which are notably vegan-friendly), this book pushes the boundaries of everyday eating into something bolder and culturally significant.

The recipes in the "Plant-Forward" section are where vegans and aspiring plant-based foodies will find striking numbers, such as Hen Of The Woods Mushrooms With Congee Grits And Red-Eye Gravy, Flame Broiled Tomato with Zucchini Blossoms, and Hummus with Black Sesame Tahini. Not all the recipes in this section are vegan, but it's still interesting to browse through the historical highlights of different cuisines featured there. And while you can firmly skip the chapters on meat and fish, don't steer away from recipes in the first few chapters: Some, like Peanut Miso Stew and Coconut Bake, are naturally suitable for vegans or require minimal substitutions. Overall, this book could make a great choice for a mixed household that cooks both vegan and non-vegan meals and would like to have a deeper understanding of cultural foods.

Static Media owns and operates Tasting Table and Mashed.