The 15 Best Vegetarian Cookbooks of 2023

For vegans, veggie-lovers and plant-forward cooks.

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November 21, 2023

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There’s never been a more exciting or inspiring time to cook plant-based at home. This year’s crop of vegetarian, vegan and plant-forward cookbooks draw inspiration from diverse sources, including authors’ heritage and culinary roots, regional time-honored traditions and the global pantry. One thing all these books have in common: they delight us with their stories, tantalize our tastebuds and stoke our curiosity with vibrant recipes chockful of flavor, texture and techniques that are guaranteed to make your vegetarian dishes the star of your table.


Author Emani Corcran is a long-time vegan so she’s had plenty of experience with developing recipes that satisfy her cravings. With this book, Corcran draws on Black food culture and her favorite family dishes to deliver a collection of recipes that are healthy and vegan but still hit the comfort food sweet spot. You’ll want to bookmark her aunt’s recipe for spiced waffles for weekend brunch and we can see Caribbean Rice and Beans being a crowd-pleasing addition to our weeknight supper rotation. For the ultimate party trick, serve the Heart of Palm Ceviche and prepare to receive all the praise (and share the recipe). The recipes are also deeply personal, so the book is peppered with anecdotes that chronicle Corcran’s food journey and why veganism is so important to her and her family.


Through this book’s 100-plus recipes, award-winning author and chef Lois Ellen Frank celebrates the “magic eight,” the key plants Native Americans introduced to the world that fundamentally changed the shape and scope of the world’s cuisines. The recipes are all anchored by these foundational ingredients, including corn, beans, squash, chile, tomato, potato, vanilla and cacao, but incorporate modern flavors and contemporary plant-based sensibilities. Recipe highlights include Savory Pumpkin Spiced Chickpeas, Pinto Bean & Mushroom Rolled Enchiladas and Vanilla & Cacao Sunflower Skillet Cakes. Besides stellar recipes, this tome celebrates the importance of Native American culinary history and seeks to spark conversations about food sovereignty and sustainability, making it an essential addition to any cookbook collection.


Leave it to cookbook author, food writer and movie culinary consultant Susan Spungen to deliver a compendium where vegetables truly take a leading role. Spungen also amassed tons of tips in her time as a caterer and chef, so each of the book’s 102 recipes contain just the essential ingredients alongside simple techniques to guarantee an A-list performance with maximum flavor pay-off. Think: Sungold Spaghetti Carbonara bursting with yellow tomatoes, Sheet-Pan Roasted Ratatouille and Mushroom Bourguignon. You’ll discover satisfying ways to transform humble vegetables like tomatoes, corn or potatoes, and broaden your veg-forward repertoire with approachable yet exciting dishes featuring ingredients such as kohlrabi or nettles.


This unique plant-based cookbook marries author Karla Salinari’s personal journey to veganism with her plant-based expertise and role as Certified Holistic Coach, all underscored by her cultural-mash-up upbringing in Puerto Rico and Miami. The book’s 75 recipes are organized around approachable chapters including condiments, breakfast and brunch, lunch and dinner, desserts and beverages, each peppered with vibrant photography that make the dishes live up to their mouth-watering promise. It’s easy to envision spending a couple hours on Sunday setting ourselves up for a delicious week ahead. Say, family-friendly Carrot Cake Muffins for breakfast, Cilantro Chimichurri to drizzle on roasted veggie and grain bowls and a pot of Garbanzo stew with plantain balls (garbazos guisados) for easy, reheat suppers. Plant-based curious eaters and seasoned vegan home cooks alike will find loads of tips in tricks in the vegan grocery shopping list, pantry must-haves and kitchen essentials, too.


The Middle East is a vast region that’s blessed with a wealth of produce and traditional plant-based cuisine. In this volume, food writer Sally Butcher celebrates vegetables with a range of hearty and accessible recipes that are inspired by and celebrate Central Asian, Iranian, Turkish, Arab and East African vegetable cooking. Recipes carefully balance not only flavors, but hot and cold elements too. We’re bookmarking Persepolis Chilli Bean Dip for our next game-day spread or potluck, Kapuska (Turkish Cabbage Stew) for cooler weather and Soup-o-Khiar (Chilled Cucumber Soup with Mint & Chilli) when the temperatures start to soar. Rather than vegan-ify meat-centric dishes, Butcher also shares recipes that incorporate versatile plant-based proteins such as seitan, tofu and tempeh amped up with a range of spices, herbs and cooking methods that make up the Middle Eastern kitchen.


It’s hard to pick favorite recipes from this stunning and thoughtful cookbook, but what we love overall is the way that author Maya Feller challenges pre-conceived notions about global cuisine and plant-forward cooking. The fact that many of the meals can be made in 30 minutes or less is a huge win for home cooks too. The 80-plus recipes promise to be as delicious as they are nourishing—Feller is a registered dietitian and nutritionist, so she smartly draws inspiration and traditional cooking methods from the global pantheon, including Asia, the Middle East and her own childhood visits to her grandparents in Trinidad and Tobago and her family’s annual trips to the Caribbean and western Africa. We’ll be incorporating the West African-inspired Sweet Potato and Leek Soup with Crispy Potato Skins into our cozy winter supper repertoire stat.


Award-winning cookbook author Andrea Nguyen is back, this time with a tome that’s dedicated to celebrating the traditions and flavors of plant-based Vietnamese cooking. The recipes are at-once comforting and exciting—simple sides are within easy reach for novice and accomplished home cooks alike, like Nuoc Cham Cabbage Stir-Fry or a Green Mango, Beet, and Herb Salad. There are several sauces and condiments we can’t wait to add to our repertoire, like a DIY vegan fish sauce and vegan mayonnaise. Vietnamese classics like pho and bahn mi get a plant-based makeover too, with dishes such as Fast Vegetarian Pho and Banh Mi with Vegan Mayonnaise and Bologna. And we could make a whole meal out of a medley of dishes from the snack section, with platters of Smoky Tofu-Nori Wontons and Steamed Veggie Bao crowding our table.


It’s easy to typify a cuisine with a signature dish or two, but often that’s not representative of a nation’s cuisine. Author Danai Moore seeks to broaden reader’s horizons with a collection of diverse vegan recipes that prove that Jamaican cuisine is so much more than oxtails and meat-heavy curries. We love how the book is organized around cleverly named chapters, like Food I Dream About Before Going to Bed, Salads That Aren’t Lame, Sides That Have Main Event Energy and Dessert As A Lifestyle. Plus, the book includes a helpful “My Pantry” primer and a section devoted to the kitchen equipment Moore can’t live without. Moore’s voice shines in each recipe’s intro, giving this book a level of next-level approachability and a we-can’t-wait-to-get-in-the-kitchen-now sensibility (for a squash and bean curry, she lovingly refers to butter beans as the underdog of the bean world). With Moore in our corner, we’ll hold our own at our next family cookout with Moore’s Dream Potato Salad that’s folded with a silky Ackee Curry Mayo, and we’re inspired to make ourselves “a lovely lunch” with a nourishing spread of Beetroot Fritters with Pea and Avo Dip.


Besides being a plant-based cookbook packed with delicious dishes, author Toni Okamoto has pulled off a feat in creating one with recipes that also promise to be quick, easy and affordable. The volume includes 100 vegan recipes organized around themed chapters, including Make-Ahead Breakfasts (hello, Fluffy Freezer-Friendly Waffles), One-Pot Meals, 30-Minute Meals, Sheet Pan Dishes and Casseroles and Mix-And-Match Bowls. The line-up of recipes reads like the crowd-pleasing, family-friendly suppers we used to only ever dream of, from Tater Tot Casserole to Mini Pizza Bagels, Udon Noodles with Peanut Sauce to Spinach Alfredo. If time is money, then this cookbook is guaranteed to save you both.


Vegetable-forward cooking has taken root in kitchens and restaurants across the U.S., and it’s an approach that chef Steven Satterfield has explored at his Atlanta restaurant Miller Union, too. He’s translated his creative approach into a cookbook of more than 150 recipes that focus on texture, a globally-inspired pantry and a minimal-waste ethos. Recipes are organized by botanical families and culinary categories, such as Roots, Leaves, Stalks, Brassicas or Mushrooms. We’re especially smitten by with Savoy Cabbage Rolls with Mushrooms and Farro and Raab and White Beans on Toast. For instant gratification, check out the Crunchy Toppings, Creamy Condiments and Flavor Bomb sections—lime-pickled red onions will forever change your taco night and charcuterie boards.


Bestselling author Nik Sharma follows up The Flavor Equation with another technique-focused cookbook that manages to be approachable for cooks of all levels. The recipes are organized around plant families and represent more than 50 vegetables, each one designed to celebrate the ingredient’s origins and biology—and to deliver on the title promise of coaxing out big flavor. To wit, Crispy Salmon with Green Curry Spinach is just the kind of plant-forward weeknight main we’ve always dreamed of, but in Sharma’s capable hands is finally a reality. Cauliflower Bolognese is the kind of simple, yet wow-factor dish we could see whipping up for a vegetarian dinner party, and Saffron Lemon Confit with Alliums + Tomato is about to become our next party trick. There are loads of salads, sides and sauces that round out the mix, so you can get big flavor even with minimal time and effort.


Acclaimed author Hetty Lieu McKinnon returns with a deeply personal cookbook that reads like a love letter to vegetables and pays homage to her Chinese immigrant father. Her father first moved to Australia as a teen and learned English while selling produce at a local market. It was through the crates full of produce he brought home after work that McKinnon developed an appreciation and an appetite for a wide variety of fruits and vegetables. Tenderheart’s 180-plus recipes feature 22 of those formative fruits and veggies, as well as inspiration and anecdotes drawn from her bicultural identity and experience. Look for cozy mains such as Miso Mushroom Ragu with Baked Polenta or Crispy Potato Tacos, and bookmark Soy-Butter Bok Choy Pasta for your next pasta night. For an easy yet center piece-worthy dessert that doubles as breakfast the next morning, bake up Sweet Potato and Black Sesame Marble Bundt.


It can be challenging to drum up enthusiasm for salad, but with this compendium of flavorful, seasonal recipes, your interest won’t wane at any point during the year. Approachability and flexibility are the name of the game for author Sheela Prakash, so you’ll find helpful tips and tricks for making the most of what’s in season and learn the art of properly seasoning your salads beyond salt and pepper. Lest you think that salads can’t take center stage, you need only to turn to dishes like Brown-Buttered Brussels Sprouts and Orecchiette Salad and Smashed Potato and Chorizo Sheet Pan Salad for proof of their crave-worthy main-dish potential. There are also a handful of whimsical, dessert-inspired fruit salads, such as Strawberry-Rhubarb Salad with Lavender Honey and Brûléed Citrus Salad.


If variety is the spice of life, then let the rainbow be your palate when it comes to diverse plant-based eating. Vegan specialist and author Harriet Porterfield has created a tome that’s practically bursting with nourishing, vibrant recipes and has stunning photographs to match. There are 70, all-natural recipes that are designed to deliver health-boosting benefits with a hearty helping of flavor and texture no matter what the meal. For Sunday breakfast we’re bookmarking rye aquafaba rainbow waffles and we’re planning to make our next desk lunch a little less sad by munching on a ready-to-go green goddess tart. Come summer, we’ll hit the farmers market to make rhubarb, strawberries and cherries galettes, but we’ll hunker down this winter with warming dishes like roasted pepper pasta with crispy spiced chickpeas (which we could eat by the handful).


Food blogger Richard Makin never met a culinary challenge he couldn’t take on, and this book is the proof in the (vegan) pudding. With his signature wit and clever swaps, home cooks can whip up comfort-food classics using all plant-based ingredients. There’s something for everyone among the 100-plus recipes, including Mac ‘n’ Cheese, Lobster Rolls, Burrito Bowls with Sofritas and Tempeh Nuggets. There’s loads of helpful tips and tricks, including a primer on stocking a plant-powered pantry and a recipe-finder quiz that simplifies what to make for dinner, whether you’re impressing your favorite vegan foodie or getting supper on the table on a typical Tuesday.

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