Despite having countless cookbooks, I mostly get my recipe inspiration from five or so of them. Kristy Turner’s new cookbook But My Family Would Never Eat Vegan! 125 Recipes to Win Everyone Over is about to get a prime space on my list of favorites. But My family Would Never Eat Vegan! is kid-friendly, but its appeal goes much further: every recipe is full of flavor and creative without being weird or overwhelming. Although it would definitely be a great resource for people who are transitioning to veganism, Turner’s new tome is also awesome for longtime vegans and vegetarians (or even curious non-omnivores) who want to mix up their recipe rotation. The recipes, which rely heavily on plant-based whole foods instead of on meat substitutes and highly processed foods, cover appropriate and festive foods for events ranging from baby showers to game days to romantic dinners. Read on for why this book will become an instant classic in your household.
Turner used to be a professional fromagier (a cheese expert) and she’s also the stepmom to two teenagers, so she knew she had to actually deliver healthy, tasty vegan meals that don’t just look good. Among those recipes are “crabless cakes” made from jackfruit, lasagna soup, cheese-stuffed meatballs, hot fudge ice cream sundaes, lemongrass tofu banh mi, buffalo cauliflower wings with blue cheese dip, and mini salted chocolate caramel pretzel tarts. Seriously, how could anyone resist? Turner’s new cookbook also offers plenty of easy modifications for gluten-free, nut-free, and soy-free eaters.
Turner’s book cheekily addresses common problems vegans face by giving names to her chapters like “My parents don’t understand why I won’t eat my childhood favorites,” “If forced to choose between chicken wings and me, my spouse would choose the wings,” and “The in-laws will just add this to my list of faults.” Winning family and friends over to the idea of a vegan lifestyle or even trying vegan food in general is a lot easier if they don’t feel like they are missing out, and Turner’s recipes are often hearty, nourishing, and typically don’t take a long time to prepare. There are still special occasion dishes like a balsamic-roasted beet and cheese galette that you will likely save for when you want to impress your dining company and have a little more time on your hands, but the majority of the recipes (including tempeh nuggets and beet hummus collard wraps) are perfect for a midweek meal. Menu-planning is admittedly not my favorite thing to do in my spare time, but I’m actually looking forward to doing it so that I can try out as many recipes as possible in But My Family Would Never Eat Vegan! This cookbook, which also features beautiful and droolworthy photos courtesy of Turner’s husband, is one of those gold standard favorites you will keep in your kitchen forever.
Images © Chris Miller