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26 Reviews
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91 of 91 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fool Proof
I love the style of cooking in this book: relatively simple recipes, most often with everyday ingredients; well written instructions; and a focus on whole foods (including the use of whole grain flours and unrefined sweeteners whenever possible). It is packed with recipes, 240 to be exact, so there options for new vegans (how to use tofu and seitan, for example), and...
Published on November 15, 2008 by Alisa Marie Fleming

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Better Books Out There
I like the Complete Idiot's Guide for most things, and if I'd found this when I first went vegan, it probably would be getting four stars instead of three. It's more cookbook then information book, which isn't a bad thing, but for a guide for "complete idiot's" I think it could use a little more information then the average cookbook.

The recipes themselves are...
Published 24 months ago by C. Vegan


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91 of 91 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fool Proof, November 15, 2008
This review is from: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Vegan Cooking (Paperback)
I love the style of cooking in this book: relatively simple recipes, most often with everyday ingredients; well written instructions; and a focus on whole foods (including the use of whole grain flours and unrefined sweeteners whenever possible). It is packed with recipes, 240 to be exact, so there options for new vegans (how to use tofu and seitan, for example), and vegan veterans who want wheat and soy-free recipes that creatively incorporate fruits, vegetables, nuts, and whole grains. That said those who are coming from fast food territory will still be welcomed by the author with some shortcut recipes for things like Tofu Dog Bites.

I have reviewed The Complete Idiot's Guide to Juicing (thumbs up) and The Complete Idiot's Guide to Total Nutrition (a disappointment), so I am well aware of the cutesy "Idiot's" format that some may love, some may feel neutral about, and some may be irritated by. At this point, I am pretty neutral, and able to look into the actual substance of the book.

The book starts with an informational section that is about 25 pages long, but it feels fairly complete for its purpose. Beverly touches on health needs and then dives into explaining milk and meat alternatives. Later in the cookbook is a chapter that is dedicated to making your own cheese and dairy alternatives.

Since I am already dairy-free, I chose to sample a recipe that also had a meat substitute vibe, the Savory Mushroom Sausages. The only changes I made were to cut the maple syrup in half (down to 1 ½ teaspoons) and increase the salt by ¼ teaspoon, as we aren't fans of the sweet flavor that many breakfast sausages have. They were awesome! I actually preferred the leftovers, after chilling overnight, as it really gave the various flavors time to meld. This was a soy-free and optional gluten-free recipe too!

I bake my own granola, so I was excited to trial the Vanilla Nut Granola recipe. It used a very different mix of spices, extracts, nuts, and seeds from my standard recipe. I really enjoyed the subtle sweetness and the very nutty tasting blend. All of Beverly's recipes are very easy to customize, so on the next go there are a few personal touches I will introduce. I think swapping the maple syrup for agave (which is half the price in my neck of the woods), and leaving out the pecans (which tended to burn easily) would make it an ideal blend for my household, adding just a slight touch of additional sweetness. Also, she ingeniously uses a blend of oil and water to keep the granola low fat, but we aren't calorie counters around here, so I will probably use all oil next time for a firmer crunch.

I loved the Carrot-Cashew Butter, a simple and thick spread with a light natural sweetness from the two main ingredients. I was also smitten by the Low Fat Miso Ginger Dressing. It was only my second time using miso, and the experience prior left me with a bad taste in my mouth, literally, but Beverly nailed it in the sweet, ginger-rich condiment.

This is definitely a cookbook that will get some mileage in my kitchen. Recipes that are next up on my list include the Maple Pecan Oatmeal Scones (made with rolled oats!), the Thai Peanut Sauce (I can never get enough of that stuff), the Raw Cheddar Cheese Spread (soy-free), the Raw ABC Nut Milk, the Red Lentil Bologneses (I am on a lentil kick), and the Blueberry Corncakes (a twist on traditional pancakes). But don't stop with my selections, there really are tons of different recipes to pick from in this one, from "Decadent Desserts" to "Marvelous Main Dishes."
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82 of 82 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best one yet, October 16, 2008
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This review is from: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Vegan Cooking (Paperback)
I have ordered several vegan cookbooks in the last month. This is the best one yet and I wish I had only ordered this one, I got a few good recipies out of the others but for the most part they are too exotic and time consuming , This one has practical simple and afordable food. I believe that I might make every one of theese. I have already made the no fat raspberry-poppyseed dressing , the breaded egplant sandwhiches, and red beans with soyrizo . It has a chapter of basic vegan cooking guidelines , and it is a good price
If you are a new vegan as I am , this is a good starter cook book that will not disapoint , like some of the pricer ones did for me .
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54 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Buy this first, November 29, 2008
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This review is from: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Vegan Cooking (Paperback)
Buy this book first. I have been working on being vegan for several months and during this time I have purchased four cook books...all have been worth their price. However, I wish I would have had this book initially because it has nutritional informations and other important facts that have helped me to reach my goal.
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30 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars They've covered everything and almost every dish, September 14, 2009
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This review is from: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Vegan Cooking (Paperback)
If you're vegetarian, not matter what kind, or just want a incorporate more veggies or use less eggs and milk-Buy This Book. After you buy it, you won't want any other cookbook. It covers everything from condiments to "meat and potato" meals. However, go easy on the seitan recipes, because you can form a gluten intolerance (shame on me...I know, but it's soooo good). All your baked goods recipes are in here as well as great tofu, TVP, and seitan recipes. It's essential to the vegetarian library. Sometimes you have to tweak things to your own tastes, but that happens. There is a good mac and cheese recipe-yummy!!! Cheesecake, cookies, tofu, I mean every thing-condiments-everything. It's a great book with a wealth of info.
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great cookbook, April 12, 2010
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This review is from: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Vegan Cooking (Paperback)
I have been vegan over 7 years, this is a great cookbook for beginners AND long-time vegans!
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great buy, August 30, 2010
This review is from: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Vegan Cooking (Paperback)
my first Vegan cook book... and that is exactly what this seems to be perfect for... great entry level book....have already made 8 dinners from this book...
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great beginner book, January 19, 2011
This review is from: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Vegan Cooking (Paperback)
If you're wondering about vegans and what they eat, this book's for you.
If you're wondering what to cook for vegans, this book's for you.
If you're thinking of becoming a vegan, this book's for you.
Some great recipes, great substitution ideas, etc.
Love it!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superior all the way!, June 13, 2011
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Paula's Place (Smalltown, Georgia) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Vegan Cooking (Paperback)
I wanted to explore vegan cooking to improve my health. I love to cook, and was looking for a how-to as much as a recipe book. I requested several books from my library to see what was out there, and this was one of many books I looked at. I am so glad I did, this book is incredible! I find myself lucky to be able to use 3-5 recipes in a typical cookbook, and well over half the recipes in this guide are ones I have tried or want to try. There are few exotic ingredients, many general cooking tips, and most recipes are quite economical. The recipes are delicious, which is of course the truest test. Do yourself a favor and invest in this book!
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You Become A Vegan or Semi Vegan, Now What?, August 28, 2011
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This review is from: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Vegan Cooking (Paperback)
I am keenly aware that there is nothing quite so potentially dangerous as a convert to some new religion or fad. I confess that since I read Colin Campbell's landmark book, The China Study, I have really changed my eating habits.

While not a total vegetarian as Dr. Campbell suggests, the impact of the credible data he presents has changed this 80 year old into a careful consumer. One can argue against the total eschewing of beef by saying "it's ok if it is grass fed, organic, etc." as some of my friends and family do, but beef or no beef, the Campbell case talks eloquently to the dangers of animal products, including meat, milk and eggs. My son, a professional fisherman out of San Francisco since 1983, still thinks freshly caught Pacific King Salmon, poached and served quite rare, is the finest dish one can eat. I agree and plan, when possible to break over!

My point: You Become A Vegan or Semi Vegan, Now What? Eating salads is ok, but this cook book shows imagination that will allow the reader (cook!) maximum chances to experiment with food that will fit the Campbell formula.

I look forward to its ideas and suggest you do the same.

Remember the huge power of food producers (and the big Pharmas) to push their products. For example, a recent study on drug advertising disclosed that some well known drug companies misstated the value of their advertised products over 50% of the time. The FDA compliance budget is $9 million a year, so what they catch may not be much in light of the over $50 billion drug makers spend on hyping their goods.

The food ads surely will continue to pump for more use of animal based products, so as in life, let the buyer beware.

As I noted in my review of the Campbell book, "The myths he attacks have accompanied me all through my life. What are they? In a nutshell, since my earliest days my parents stressed the importance of protein obtained mainly from animal sources--meat, eggs, and milk--as the key to strong bones and longevity. It turns out that the corporate entities that sell these products have strong motivation not to reveal, as Campbell eloquently does, the dangers of our levels of ingestion. More shockingly, he counsels us to become vegetarians!"

Eat, enjoy and evaluate the data, but this cookbook could be a genuine help to you in tending toward the Campbell goal and hence better health, which after all is the keystone to enjoying increased longevity!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent source for recipes, August 1, 2011
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This review is from: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Vegan Cooking (Paperback)
This recipe book is easy to read, with practical recipes. One of the very best vegan cookbooks I have seen!
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The Complete Idiot's Guide to Vegan Cooking
The Complete Idiot's Guide to Vegan Cooking by Beverly Lynn Bennett (Paperback - August 5, 2008)
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