Take a look at my round-up of some of the most beautiful vegetarian recipe books I’ve come across
Beautiful cookbooks are what absolutely make a home kitchen. I grew up surrounded by my Ma’s huge collection of vegetarian recipe books, and since I first moved out to university I’ve been trying to curate a library of gorgeous recipe books to rival hers. Every birthday and Christmas my partner and I exchange a few cookbooks, full of delicious treats (and drool-worthy pictures) – sometimes inspired by the way one or the other of us prefers to eat (being a gluten-free vegetarian means my recipe books can get specific, and as a chef he loves anything on-trend or unusual), inspiring us for a trip we want to take together, or just because the book looks beautiful and the recipes sound delicious. Read on for the list of my all-time favourite vegetarian recipe books:
Just FYI, where I’ve included a link with this ^ symbol, it means that, if you click on the link and if you make a purchase, I get a tiny commission from Amazon. The income I get from this adds up to a few coffees a month (if I’m lucky), but every little helps, right?
The Most Beautiful Vegetarian Recipe Books:
This vegetarian recipe book just makes me want to get up, pack a bag, and book a flight to anywhere. The recipes are all healthy and easy-to-follow. Authors David Frenkiel and Louise Vindahl have travelled the world with their little family, and this recipe book shows just that, a mishmash of cuisines, all with a focus on simple, fresh, green ingredients.
Crank’s is basically the original vegetarian restaurant in the UK. Established in 1961 on London’s Carnaby Street, the restaurant expanded out to a small chain, and now has one venue in Dorset, along with a range of fresh vegetarian breads and food-to-go, available in supermarkets, and a whole bunch of recipe books that have been my family’s go-to since the dawn of time. My sisters and I have all been bestowed with the original paperback Cranks Recipe Book: The Vegetarian Classics^, which inspires my dad’s best-ever, super-warming, comfort-eating, hangover-curing tomato soup recipe.
‘Mad Jaff’, as she is lovingly nicknamed in our house, is another long-standing family favourite. There are so many beautiful vegetarian Indian recipe books I could refer to, but Madhur Jaffrey is an actual Queen, so I go back to her again and again. Madhur Jaffrey”s Indian Cookery^ is the other old-fashioned paperback that my parents made sure to give me a copy of when I moved away from home, but her World Vegetarian Cookbook^is more deserving on a list of the best vegetarian recipe books.
Anna Jones is a healthy vegetarian superstar and one-time student of Jamie Oliver. I love love love her vegetarian recipe books because they aren’t just recipe books: yes, she includes full recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and everything in-between, but its the extra pages, showing formulae or variations, or seasonal combinations that really make this cookbook shine. Pages like ‘How to Make a Great Salad’ or ‘Morning Smoothies – A Few Ways’ don’t give you a recipe, as such, they give you the tools to find your own favourite recipes, time and again.
Mildred is not only the name of my baby sister, but also another of the UK’s longest-standing (and still thriving) vegetarian restaurants. I think I have a bit of wistful nostalgia for vegetarian restaurants: my parents owned one in Yorkshire in the late ’80s and all their stories from that time sometimes make me wish I could follow in their footsteps. The recipes in this book are divine and really well-labelled for vegan and gluten-free options too, which is super-helpful for me.