33 Best Vegan Books for 2017
We hear every day from health professionals and major media outlets that veganism is the best way forward for the future - for the animals, for our bodies, and for our planet.
But if you’ve lived most of your life eating and wearing animal products, making the switch can be challenging and overwhelming.
Should I do it all at once?
Can I make small changes to my lifestyle and ease into going vegan?
There're lots resources online, but it can be hard to find a complete guide to walking you through your lifestyle change.
Luckily, there are many step-by-step guides out there to help you adjust from a traditional, omnivorous lifestyle to a thriving vegan.
The following books will outline how to move to a vegan lifestyle, and will be there to support you at every step of the way.
Vegan Books for Beginners
Vegan Baking Books
I remember my first attempts at vegan baking yielding less-than-stellar results - flat, dense, sweet bread and crumbly cookies.
Because baking is ultimately a science, I found it helpful to have baking-specific cookbooks filled with recipes on how to sub out the animal-based ingredients I had baked with all my life.
The more I learned about subbing out ingredients when making vegan baked goods, the better I got at coming up with recipes on the fly, but the recipes I pull from these baking cookbooks continue to be the most well-received items I make when I bring them to a holiday dinner or potluck.
These four baking books are highly rated and include a variety of options for your next baking day.
More Reading: Full List of Vegan Baking and Dessert Cookbooks
Vegan Fitness Books
Vegans have an unfair stereotype of being weak and anemic, unable even to get enough protein to sustain them throughout the day.
However, as veganism becomes more and more mainstream, we’re finally getting to see that you don’t need to eat meat or animal products to be a world-class athlete.
Books for vegan athletes range from guides for athletes or aspiring athletes, running down training plants, recipes, and step-by-step guides to how to make the transition to life as a plant-based athlete.
My personal favorite from this list is Scott Jurek’s Eat & Run (Amazon), which outlines the world-famous ultrarunner’s inspiring story, his transition to veganism, and some of his favorite plant-based recipes. I'm also happy to say that you can get it for FREE on Audible!
However, I would recommend any of the following four books to any vegan athlete!
Vegan Diet & Weight Loss
Some people assume that going vegan automatically means they will lose weight. While going vegan means you’ll consume less saturated fat, and cholesterol thank you did on an omnivorous diet, there are still plenty of high-calorie vegan foods that, if eaten in excess, will result in weight gain.
For those looking to lose weight, Charles Thornton, and Mark Bittman’s books will provide recipes and guidelines for losing weight on a vegan diet.
I found Mark Bittman’s book to be extremely helpful to those who are eating an omnivorous diet, but want to transition into veganism.
The book is not 100% vegan, but there are plenty of delicious vegan recipes and is a perfect solution for those who want to lose weight while slowly making the transition to a plant-based diet, and may be overwhelmed by the thought of going completely vegan overnight.
Raw Veganism Books
Raw Veganism has come a long, long way in the history of humanity. While big salads and giant platters of fruit still have their place in a raw vegan diet, people are starting to look for “recipes” to make using only raw foods.
The cookbooks below contain beautiful and delicious approaches to raw foods, offering raw versions of familiar foods like tacos, pancakes, and dairy-free ice cream.
Each of the three female authors below began sharing their raw vegan recipes on the internet through blogs and videos and wrote books after being so well-received online. From those interested in raw veganism to raw vegan veterans alike, these three raw veganism books are perfect to keep in your kitchen for instruction and inspiration.
In any kitchen, it’s important to have at least one staple, all-around cookbook - something that isn’t specific to one type of cooking or cuisine, which offers a wide variety of recipes for everyday cooking.
The following four cookbooks fit exactly that job description, offering an expansive variety of recipes for everything from appetizers to desserts, as well as staples for a vegan kitchen.
If you’re going to keep one solid cookbook in your vegan kitchen to refer to for any meal, let it be one of the following four:
For a huge list of the top rated vegan cookbooks, check out our post here.
Vegan Cheese Books
“But I could never give up cheese!” It’s an all too common cry among hopeful vegans. Sure, we have products that we can purchase to mimic shredded cheddar on tacos and melty mozzarella. But sometimes you crave a more “adult” cheese, one you can serve at a dinner party with bunches of fresh grapes and glasses of wine.
Miyoko Schinner’s Artisan Vegan Cheese (Amazon) is the solution. An expert in vegan staples and creative approaches to dairy alternatives, she walks you through how to create beautiful vegan cheeses from ingredients like walnuts and cashews.
If you’re looking for something to make that will impress at your next dinner party, let it be the vegan Gruyere from this book.
Vegan Lifestyle Books
One of the biggest realizations of my life happened about a year after I started going vegan in the first place.
I realized that veganism is so much more than just a diet - it is a lifestyle, a perspective through which we see the world.
As I learned more about animal injustice, I was interested to learn more about the lifestyle and wanted to learn more about veganism in society than just in the kitchen.
If you’re also interested in learning more about the vegan lifestyle, I would recommend picking up any of the following four books in your local bookstore, or on Amazon:
Vegan Kids Books
One of the most difficult things about raising vegan kids is explaining to them why being vegan is important. How do you communicate such a topic to a child without making it scary or upsetting?
Ruby Roth’s books listed below are the perfect solution to how to teach children about veganism and are ideal for children who have been raised vegan from the start, or those in families who are thinking about transitioning to veganism. The books do a good job of approaching delicate subjects, have beautiful illustrations, and focus on the positive aspects of veganism to keep the topic as child-friendly as possible.
If you’re looking to raise vegan children, consider either of Ruby Roth’s children’s books on the subject:
There are lots of reasons people go vegan - environmental and health reasons are among them, but the most common reason people decide to avoid animal products is because they learn about the injustice suffered by animals for their meat, milk, and eggs.
The books below elaborate on the morality and ethics of animals, and I have found them supremely helpful in creating my solid stance on animal rights. Mostly, the points in these books have come in handy when I discuss animal rights and the morality of eating meat and animal products with non-vegans. By being able to respond with facts rather than the emotion, I feel when I talk about injustice toward animals, it helps foster a more productive conversation and is more likely to get that person to consider another view.
The books listed below are standard reading for any vegan who is interested in learning more about animal rights, the morals, and ethics of eating animals, and acquiring knowledge to use in conversation with omnivores.
These are by no means the only books out there on veganism - a quick stroll through your bookstore or a browse through the vegan books section of Amazon yields enough titles to fill every room in your house.
However, as you’re beginning to stock your collection of vegan cookbooks and lifestyle guides, these can be the perfect place to start in an otherwise overwhelming sea of options.
By reading about veganism and animal rights, you arm yourself with all-important knowledge, which not only helps make a vegan lifestyle easier, but it can also solidify why you choose to avoid meat, dairy, and eggs.
They say that knowledge is power, and in the case of veganism, it can be delicious too! Happy reading!