Vegetarian cookbook recommendations sought!
October 27, 2009 10:22 PM   Subscribe

Give me your favourite vegetarian cookbook that has illustrations of simple but delicious meals, and offers the nutritional information for each meal.

I'm starting to cook by recipe, rather than throwing anything I have in the kitchen into a pot and improvising. At the same time, I'm trying to decrease on the amount of meat I have on my diet. Though there are lots of awesome websites with an abundance of information on cooking veggies, I find the wealth of information makes it hard to find one starting point. So I'm asking for your recommendations for a vegetarian cookbook with the following criteria:

Simple meals: I really like the concept of the Vegetarian 5-Ingredient Gourment, which restricts each meal to 5 ingredients or less. I'm not terribly fussy about an absolute limitation on number of ingredients, but simple to make would be good - I'm pretty pressed for time. Michael Smith's Best of Chef at Home is a good standard for how simple I'd like the instructions and prep to be.

Nutritional information: Rather than laboriously looking up every ingredient online myself and then calculating the portions, I would prefer if the book listed these for me. This is totally essential.

Illustrations: These are more or less optional, but pretty pictures totally motivate me to cook.

Optional: This is totally nitpicky, but if that book only focused on cooking actual meals rather than desserts/drinks, that'd be great, too. I drink water and eat fruit, and having a book that spends 1/5 of its real estate on smoothies and cakes that I won't be making seems like a bit of a waste.

Does my dream cookbook exist? Thanks in advance for any help!
posted by Phire to Food & Drink (5 answers total) 28 users marked this as a favorite
This thread from Chowhound has some suggestions you might like.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 11:40 PM on October 27, 2009

I wish A Year In A Vegetarian Kitchen, by Jack Bishop had nutritional information, because I like to recommend it.

Instead, how about Donna Klein's Mediterranean Vegan Kitchen? I like this one because it doesn't rely on meat or dairy substitutes -- it has recipes that just don't call for these items.
posted by Sallyfur at 12:05 AM on October 28, 2009

The Veganomicon is pretty good, although vegan and may not be what you're looking for. Sallyfur hit on the drawback of this book in that it calls for some specialty ingredients that can be hard to find depending on what sort of stores you have access to. Fantastic recipes though.

The Accidental Vegetarian is also very good, but small.
posted by neewom at 12:31 AM on October 28, 2009

I have this cookbook and think it would be perfect for you - although I'm not sure how easily you could get it in the US? Mine is the second listed but I presume the one that's available is the same.

The best thing about it is that it has an extensive photo index at the front so you can flick through for inspiration and you have an idea what every single dish looks like - I hate recipe books that don't have images for every recipe! Plus there are detailed step by step instructions, with lots of pictures throughout. Nutritional information is provided and there are lots of sections such as pasta; rice and grains; eggs; vegetables; soups; starters; breads; salads etc, etc.
posted by schmoo at 1:16 AM on October 28, 2009

My favorite vegetarian cookbook is Rebar's Cookbook. I don't have a copy with me right now, but it might not have the nutritional information you seek. The recipes are very good and mostly quite healthy.
posted by caddis at 7:46 AM on October 28, 2009 [1 favorite]

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