12 of the Best Plant-Based Cookbooks to Put You on the Fast Track to Health

9 min read

Interest in plant-based eating has skyrocketed. Restaurant chains are adding plant-based menu items. Supermarkets increasingly feature plant-based alternatives, often right next to meat and dairy. And eating well starts at home — with the food you make yourself. Good recipes can make all the difference! Here are some of our favorite plant-powered cookbooks.

With the increasing visibility and availability of meat and dairy analogues, eating a predominantly plant-based diet is becoming more mainstream. Nearly 68% of Americans have tried a plant-based meat or dairy alternative, and one-third are actively incorporating plant-based foods into their diet. Over the last few years, veganism and other forms of plant-based eating have skyrocketed, inspiring global food companies to provide meat– and dairy-free options not just in grocery stores but in restaurants and other places where food is served, including in hospitals and schools.

Some people are motivated to eat this way for health reasons — looking to nutrition to prevent or heal chronic conditions and diseases. For decades, nutritional pioneers like Drs. T. Colin Campbell, Caldwell Esselstyn, and Dean Ornish have shown that diseases like cancer, heart disease, and diabetes can be prevented and even reversed with the help of a whole food, plant-based diet.

And, in fact, study after study has shown the incredible healing power of whole plant foods loaded with antioxidants, phytonutrients, fiber, and other disease-fighting compounds.

At the same time, we’ve discovered the harmful effects of a diet high in factory-farmed animal products, which lack these good-for-you chemicals. Instead, they can contribute to disease in the body, wreaking havoc on your cells and even speeding up the aging process.

In addition to health, there are other reasons that people are gravitating toward plant-based eating. Factory farming inflicts massive damage on the environment. Experts agree that consumers can reduce their carbon footprint dramatically by eliminating beef from their diets, or even reducing it by 25%. And moving away from industrialized meat can also save millions of animals from living in cruel conditions before being slaughtered.

Whatever your reason for considering (or continuing) a plant-based diet, good recipes can make everything easier — and more delicious!

While you can surely find a variety of recipes on the Internet, investing in a few good vegan or plant-based cookbooks can really set you up for success. Cookbooks are a great resource for finding real, kitchen-tested recipes that are healthy and tasty. Many of them include suggestions for pantry staples to have on hand, plant-based substitutions for dairy, or where to find specific ingredients you may be unfamiliar with. You might also find suggestions for cooking tools and even playlists to cook to.

But as plant-based diets continue to rise in popularity, so do the number of cookbooks to choose from. That’s why we’ve rounded up a collection of some of our favorite plant-based cookbooks. These selections will help put you on the fast track to health and good nutrition, while also making a positive impact on animals and the environment.

Get Your Hands on 12 of the Best Plant-Based Cookbooks

Having a good vegan cookbook on hand can make all the difference. Whether you’re looking to go fully plant-based or you’re flexitarian or veg-curious, these cookbooks will have you preparing mouthwatering vegan meals in a jiffy. From culturally specific recipes to eating plant-based on a budget to creating plant-based meals for specific health conditions, there’s a little something here for everyone.

1. Real Superfoods: Everyday Ingredients to Elevate Your Health by Ocean Robbins and Nichole Dandrea-Russert, MS, RDN

Yes, you read that right. Food Revolution Network released its first physical cookbook in 2023, coauthored by cofounder and CEO, Ocean Robbins, and Nichole Dandrea-Russert, RDN, FRN’s Lead Dietitian Nutritionist.

Unlike the heavily marketed version of superfoods that are trendy, inaccessible, and expensive, this comprehensive and beautiful cookbook unveils the essence of what makes a “real” superfood. Instead of exotic and hard-to-find ingredients, Real Superfoods features foods that are readily available, budget-friendly, and nutrient-dense. And when you know what to do with them, Real Superfoods are also delicious — which is why it’s a cookbook!

You’ll get everything you’ve come to expect from FRN recipes, along with all the research-backed info on what makes these superfoods great. Plus, enjoy practical tips and techniques to seamlessly integrate these foods into your daily diet and improve your health — one bite at a time!

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

Blogger Toni Okamoto of Plant-Based on a Budget provides valuable advice for eating nutritious food on a budget, proving that you don’t need to spend your whole paycheck on whole foods. In her latest cookbook, Plant-Based on a Budget Quick & Easy, she shows how you can prepare and enjoy healthy, nutritious, and affordable meals without much muss or fuss. It’s the perfect meal companion for parents or anyone who finds themselves strapped for time or money.

Toni’s recipes are accessible and fun, with personal anecdotes and commentary sprinkled throughout the book. Although some recipes verge on less healthy versions of “comfort” food, you can omit any oils or sweeteners if you like. Best of all, many of these whole food, plant-based recipes can be made in under 30 minutes.

This cookbook also gets the seal of approval from Food Revolution Summit speaker (and fellow cookbook author) Michael Greger, MD, who wrote the foreword.

3. The How Not to Die Cookbook: 100+ Recipes to Help Prevent and Reverse Disease by Michael Greger, MD

Speaking of Dr. Michael Greger, the New York Times best-selling author’s How Not to Die Cookbook puts all of the science-backed research from his companion book, How Not to Die, into action with over 100 disease-fighting recipes.

Because Dr. Greger’s approach to plant-based eating is research-based, you’ll find specific examples of nutrition-related findings that correspond to a variety of diseases. You’ll also learn more about Dr. Greger’s Daily Dozen: the foods he recommends eating daily for optimal health.

All of Dr. Greger’s plant-based recipes have a note at the bottom to indicate which of his Daily Dozen foods are included. And each recipe is accompanied by gorgeous food photography and a difficulty level to help guide your culinary exploration.

Dr. Greger also provides free access to nutritional information through his website,

4. Sweet Potato Soul: 100 Easy Vegan Recipes for the Southern Flavors of Smoke, Sugar, Spice, and Soul by Jenné Claiborne

Southern cooking never looked so healthy with food blogger and personal chef Jenné Claiborne’s Sweet Potato Soul cookbook. Sweet Potato Soul not only transforms soul food favorites into plant-based masterpieces but also offers a unique look into the history and culture of soul food in the African-American experience. She even weaves in interesting insights on how specific foods became ingrained in African-American culture.

Whether you eat soul food in your daily life already or you’re new to the cuisine, Jenné includes essential tools and ingredients you should have on hand when creating vegan soul food dishes. Each recipe also includes a short backstory into its inspiration or a personal insight into what makes that recipe particularly good for you.

5. The Fiber Fueled Cookbook: Inspiring Plant-Based Recipes to Turbocharge Your Health by Will Bulsiewicz, MD, MSCI

Best-selling author Dr. Will Bulsiewicz partnered with plant-based chef and registered dietitian Alexandra Caspero on the companion cookbook for his bestseller Fiber Fueled. Inside you’ll find an impressive array of fiber-filled recipes designed to improve the health of your gut. The cookbook also has Dr. B’s signature down-to-earth style and is packed to the brim with easy-to-understand information.

Along with providing microbiome-friendly recipes, The Fiber Fueled Cookbook is also a program of sorts, helping you get to the root of and heal your tummy troubles. You’ll get insight on FODMAPs and histamine and how to work with food intolerances. And there are even food lists and guidance on how to ferment and sprout plant-based staples.

6. Vegetable Kingdom: The Abundant World of Vegan Recipes by Bryant Terry

Vegan chef and food justice activist Bryant Terry will have you looking at plants in a new light with his critically acclaimed cookbook Vegetable Kingdom. His Afro-fusion recipes take a gourmet approach to plant-based eating, covering the gamut from fancy toasts to gumbos and curries.

Throughout the cookbook, Bryant frequently mixes unexpected ingredients and flavor combinations, as he encourages readers to also experiment and play with their food. Each recipe even comes with a recommended soundtrack to cook to. Ultimately, as its name suggests, Vegetable Kingdom is a foray into familiarizing yourself with vegetables and their versatility — and a reminder that you don’t need meat or dairy, or their analogues, to create flavorful and appealing plant-based meals.

7. PlantYou: 140+ Ridiculously Easy, Amazingly Delicious Plant-Based Oil-Free Recipes by Carleigh Bodrug

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Many whole food, plant-based eaters choose to cook without oil since it’s actually a refined or processed food. But it can sometimes prove challenging to know how to do this effectively without sacrificing flavor or consistency. Luckily, Carleigh Bodrug of PlantYou is here to show you the way to create oil-free plant-based recipes. Her highly anticipated first cookbook was an instant New York Times bestseller and has positioned her as a trusted influencer in the plant-based cooking space.

PlantYou is a virtual treasure trove of oil-free recipes, whether you’re looking for entrées, salads, sauces, or desserts. Plus, each recipe has a visual representation of its ingredients to make shopping a cinch, along with simplified and easy-to-follow instructions. Bonus: It has a foreword and seal of approval from Dr. B (Will Bulsiewicz, MD)!

8. The Korean Vegan Cookbook: Reflections and Recipes from Omma’s Kitchen by Joanne Lee Molinaro

One of the most highly regarded vegan cookbooks in recent history, The Korean Vegan Cookbook is the James Beard Award-winning debut by home chef Joanne Lee Molinaro. The Korean Vegan Cookbook is a deeply personal look at the food and associated memories that helped shape Joanne’s family history — and how she has sought to keep those memories alive with her vegan interpretations of these traditional and family recipes.

Each Korean Vegan recipe is accompanied by stunning food photography that really elevates the overall reading experience. The cookbook is also organized into culturally appropriate categories like banchan (side dishes) or kimchi and salads. Whether you’re already a Korean food fan or are curious about how to make plant-based Korean recipes, this cookbook is a must-have.

9. The 30-Day Alzheimer’s Solution: The Definitive Food and Lifestyle Guide to Preventing Cognitive Decline by Dean Sherzai, MD, and Ayesha Sherzai, MD

Neurologists and FRN Healthy Brain Masterclass collaborators Drs. Dean and Ayesha Sherzai are experts when it comes to brain health. And after decades of research studying neurodegenerative diseases, they’ve released The 30-Day Alzheimer’s Solution, a cookbook and guide designed to help prevent cognitive decline at any age.

You’ll discover the Sherzais’ NEURO Plan approach to Alzheimer’s prevention, and find out what plant-based foods made their list of the Neuro Nine: foods that will help to keep you sharp and free from disease. As rates of Alzheimer’s continue to rise, this is an essential (and delicious!) resource that could save your life or the life of someone you love.

10. Black Rican Vegan: Fire Plant-Based Recipes from a Bronx Kitchen by Lyana Blount

Bronx native Lyana Blount draws from her African American and Puerto Rican heritage in the Black Rican Vegan. You’ll find veganized versions of traditional Puerto Rican dishes like mofongo and chicharrones, along with New York foodie favorites like birria and BCEs (bacon, egg, and cheese sandwiches).

Since Lyana uses oil in some of her recipes, along with meat and dairy analogues, this cookbook is best for those just transitioning to a plant-based diet. Although not all ingredients are whole foods, you can always leave any problematic ones out or replace them with whole-food alternatives such as lentils instead of vegan beef or homemade nut-based butter instead of store-bought vegan butter. Ultimately, the Black Rican Vegan encourages the re-creation of recipes, hoping to change perspectives on what plant-based cooking can be.

11. Power Plates: 100 Nutritionally Balanced, One-Dish Vegan Meals by Gena Hamshaw

With a food system that’s calorie-dense but nutrient-poor, many people are not getting the nutrition they need. As a result, blogger and registered dietitian nutritionist Gena Hamshaw created Power Plates, a cookbook that helps people understand good nutrition and how to get it. Focusing on the macronutrients of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins, Gena guides the reader through creating nutritionally balanced plant-based meals that won’t leave them hungry.

As Gena prefers savory flavor profiles, you won’t find many sweet recipes (there’s no dessert category, either). But you will find loads of whole-food ways to bring variety and nourishment to your diet.

12. Seed to Plate, Soil to Sky: Modern Plant-Based Recipes using Native American Ingredients by Lois Ellen Frank, PhD

James Beard Award-winning author and chef, Lois Ellen Frank created this cookbook out of a desire to encourage Indigenous communities to eat more plants. Although many Native American tribes included meat and fish in their traditional diets, the majority of staple foods were native plants. However, a lot of the original tribal foodways were lost with the introduction of the reservation system and the implementation of colonizer foods through the Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (FDPIR)

Lois’ cookbook, Seed to Plate, Soil to Sky focuses on “The Magic Eight” essential plant-based foods that Native peoples (particularly from the American Southwest) gave to the world. Each section of the cookbook focuses on one of these foods, and includes recipes for sides, appetizers, mains, soups, desserts, beverages, and more. She also gives a brief timeline and history of Native American cuisine and the important cultural context that reclaiming these foods has on tribal sovereignty and sustainability.

Seed to Plate, Soil to Sky is a beautiful and practical dedication to Indigenous food wisdom that’s beneficial to all, Native or not.

Tell us in the comments:

  • Where do you look for meal inspiration?
  • What are some of your favorite plant-based cookbooks?
  • What are some of your favorite plant-powered recipes?

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