The Truly Healthy Vegan Cookbook by Dianne Wenz
The Truly Healthy Vegan Cookbook by Dianne Wenz is a lovely vegan cookbook chock full of delicious, simple-ish to make, healthy vegan recipes.
The Truly Healthy Vegan Cookbook by Dianne Wenz, review and GIVEAWAY!
EDITED 12/15/19 WINNER BELOW
Scroll down for the recipe and Giveaway!
“Vegan” can be anything from the one extreme of totally organic, raw food vegan to the other extreme of chips, Oreos, and Pepsi. I’ve done both and every point in between. What I like so much about Dianne’s new book, The Truly Healthy Vegan Cookbook from Rockridge Press, is the recipes are tasty and delicious – and familiar – and super healthy at the same time. They’re old favorites (with some twists!) made with techniques that keep them lower in oil and other less than optimal ingredients.
The recipes in the book include the introductory chapter on what is healthy vegan food. She talks about what isn’t as healthy, even though it’s vegan, and how to adjust recipes to make them more so. Included is a list of the Top 10 Vegan Diet Mistakes. (I’ve made a lot of them myself!)
Delicious Truly Healthy Vegan Recipes
The recipes in the book are broken up into a Basics first chapter, which covers making your own staples like vegetable stock and everyday recipes like Baked Tofu.
- The Breakfast chapter includes a beautiful Spinach-Mushroom Frittata, Morning Muffins, and Breakfast Burritos (yum!).
- There’s a Salad chapter, with Green Goddess Salad, Chickpea Gyro Salad, Gado Gado, and more.
- In Soups and Stews, Dianne has included some hearty fare, like Mushroom Barley Soup, Vegetable Chili, Peanut Stew, and Vegetable Curry. I’m definitely making the Potato Leek Soup.
- In Burgers, Sandwiches, and Wraps, there are recipes for Mushroom Po Boys, Bean Ball Subs, Lentil Sloppy Joes, Sweet Potato Falafel Pitas, and Ceasar Chickpea Wraps.
- Side dishes include Chili Lime Roasted Radishes (recipe below!), Black Pepper Mushrooms, Creamed Kale, Buffalo Brussels Sprouts (oh, yeah!), and Scalloped Sweet Potatoes. The Baked Zucchini Fries sound amazing.
- Dinner Mains include Crispy Artichoke Tacos, Cauliflower Steaks with Spinach Pesto, Chickpea Pot Pie (I want!), Portobello Fajitas, and Shepherdess’s Pie with Sweet Potato Crust.
- The Pasta, Noodles, and Rice chapter includes Cold Sesame Noodles (I should not be writing this while hungry!), Creamy Mushroom Stroganoff, Vegetable Lasagna, and a fantastic Buddha Bowl.
- And there’s more! Desserts are made healthy in this book! The Sweets chapter has delectable treats like Key Lime Bars, Chocolate Peanut Butter Mousse, Cookie Dough Bites, and a Mixed Berry Crisp.
None of Dianne’s recipes are overly complicated and they primarily use ingredients that are easily found at most local groceries. That’s such a plus for me. It drives me nuts to decide on a recipe and then realize I’ll have to drive an hour to a specialty store or wait a week to get an ingredient online.
Dianne Wenz is a Holistic Health Coach, Vegan Lifestyle Coach, Plant-Based Diet Nutrition Specialist, Plant-Based Chef, and cookbook author. I’ve enjoyed reading her blog, Dianne’s Vegan Kitchen, for years. Her recipes are mostly simple to make (important!) and tend towards the healthy side.
She’s an artist with a BFA from Parsons School of Design and has a wealth of knowledge and experience in the field of vegan food and nutrition. Dianne has trained at or been certified by a huge number of respected sources, including her training as a Holistic Health Coach at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. She’s been certified as a Holistic Health Practitioner from the American Association of Drugless Practitioners and the International Association of Health Coaches and as a Vegan Lifestyle Coach from Victoria Moran’s Main Street Vegan Academy. AND, she has a certificate in Plant-Based Nutrition from eCornell University and a Plant-Based Professional Chef Certification from Rouxbe Cooking School. Whew!
So, she knows what she’s talking about!
The Truly Healthy Vegan Cookbook is currently available for pre-order on Amazon
… and officially launches on 12/31/19!
Here’s an interview with Dianne!
Please tell us about YOU and your kitchen in general? Who are you, what do you do, and where in the world do you do it?
Thank you for asking! I’m Dianne Wenz, and I’m a vegan health and lifestyle coach, plant-based chef, and blogger. And I’ve recently added cookbook author to the list, too! In my coaching business, I help people make the changes necessary to go vegan, and I work with people who are already vegan to achieve their healthy living goals. I also teach cooking classes in my local area in Northen New Jersey.
My kitchen is vintage! My house was built in 1949, and I don’t think anything has been updated since then. Everything works and it’s cute, so I haven’t done anything to renovate it yet.
When and how did you become vegan? What influenced you?
I went vegetarian in 1993, simply because I no longer wanted to eat animals. Even as a kid, I didn’t think it was right that we kept cats and dogs as pets but ate pigs and cows. You know how most children have to sit at the table until they finish all of the vegetables on their plate? I always gobbled up my veggies, but I’d be stuck at the table until I finished my meat.
I went vegan in 2001. I had read a book called The Perfectly Contented Meat-Eater’s Guide to Vegetarianism by Mark Warren Reinhardt. I was already vegetarian, but I read it thinking it would give me some ammunition for when people asked me stupid questions or made ignorant comments. It was actually a book about veganism, and I learned what goes in on the egg and dairy industries, which horrified me. Around the same time, a doctor suggested I give up milk to alleviate chronic sinus headaches and allergy problems I was suffering from. So, I decided to make the plunge into veganism. My headaches went away immediately and my allergies diminished.
How has cooking only with plants changed your kitchen and the way you cook and entertain?
It’s hard to say because I’ve never cooked with meat. I was still living with my mom when I went vegetarian, and she did most of the cooking. She had no idea what to cook for me, so I pretty much taught myself how to cook so I wouldn’t starve. I got a subscription to Vegetarian Times and started cooking my way thought each issue.
Cooking with vegetables has really helped me think creatively, though. I’ll come across an omnivore recipe and think about what I can use in the place of the meat. Sure, tofu or tempeh would work, but sometimes cauliflower or brussels sprouts might be a better option.
What motivated you to write your book, The Truly Healthy Vegan Cookbook? And can you tell us more about the book?
I get a lot of emails from people who want to take cooking classes with me, but they aren’t local, and I wanted to create a cookbook of easy-to-make healthy recipes for them. Most of the recipes in The Truly Healthy Vegan Cookbook are vegetable-centric, with foods like cauliflower and eggplant taking center stage on the plate. There are quite a few recipes with hidden veggies, too, which is a good way to get picky eaters to eat healthy meals.
What are some of your favorite recipes from The Truly Healthy Vegan Cookbook?
This is a tough one! I really like the Cauliflower Banh Mi. Gado Gado, Mushroom Stroganoff, and Cookie Dough Bites are all favorites, too.
What was your worst cooking failure? And greatest success?
I’m not very good at creating recipes for baked goods. It’s too much of a science for me. I once tried to make green matcha shortbread cookies for a St. Patrick’s Day blog post, and after several rounds of failure, I gave up and made avocado ice cream with matcha instead!
I’m not sure what my greatest success has been, but sometimes I’m surprised by how tasty a new recipe is on the first go. I created a cauliflower pizza crust recipe for The Truly Healthy Vegan Cookbook, and I was expecting to have to fiddle with it a few times before it worked, but to my amazement, it worked on the first try.
Favorite kitchen gadget? Technique? Best tip?
I think it would be a tie between my food processor and my Blendtec. I use them both constantly to make sauces and dressings. I love all of the attachments that came with the food processor for chopping and grating veggies. I really love my air fryer, too. I like kitchen gadgets!
The one tip I always give my coaching clients is to not worry too much about messing up a recipe. I find that people are often worried dishes won’t turn out correctly. It’s pretty difficult to “break” a recipe. If you mess up, just go with it—it’ll probably be just as yummy!
Your go-to prepared vegan foods?
I always have a stash of Amy’s frozen meals in the freezer, for those days that I’m in a pinch and don’t have time to make lunch. You can usually find a few Sweet Earth vegan breakfast burritos in the freezer, too.
And of course … Where do you get your protein?
From food, of course! A doctor once asked me where I get my protein, which surprised me, because shouldn’t doctors know that protein is in just about every food? Since she asked, I kept track of my protein for a day, and I consumed about 80 grams of protein, which is a lot more than someone my size needs.
Chili Lime Roasted Radishes
Here’s a super tasty recipe Dianne is sharing from her new book. I LOVE cooked radishes. It’s amazing how sweet they get. Lime and chili is a delicious combination of flavors to pair with these root veggies that have been tamed by roasting! This is what I’m making tonight!
Chili Lime Roasted Radishes by Dianne Wenz
This delicious recipe for Chili Lime Roasted Radishes is from Dianne's new book, The Truly Healthy Vegan Cookbook. Roasted radishes are surprisingly sweet and mild and the addition of chili and lime makes them over the top delectable.
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Place the radishes in a large bowl with the lime juice, oil, chili powder, and salt. Toss to coat the radishes well.
Place the radishes on the baking sheet and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until they are golden and fork-tender.
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The Truly Healthy Vegan Cookbook GIVEAWAY
I’m giving away a copy of Dianne’s book.
To enter the giveaway, please simply leave a comment below.
I’ll be choosing one commenter at random next week. Sorry, but this giveaway is limited to the US. Don’t want to wait? Pre-order a copy HERE.
Deadline to enter: 12/14/19
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Want even more healthy, vegan recipes? Try these!
This sweet potato chili made in the Instant Pot was so easy and yummy delicious. It tasted as though it had simmered all day over a low flame.
DIY Beyond Sausage Vegan Brats are a delicious, hearty, and meaty replica of the commercial version, which is also totally delicious, btw.
Vegan Medicine Soup will cure what ails ya. Or at least make you feel a little better while you recuperate. You can enjoy this delicious soup any time but it may relieve a few symptoms when you’re having a sick day.
We have a winner!
I used the super sophisticated method of counting the replies and then using an online random number generator.
Here it is. Numero uno was Latasha Burnett. Thank you all for participating and commenting! If you are not Latasha, please do go HERE to pre-order the book!