Lisa Pitman and I are seasoned cooks and long-time vegans. We know it’s difficult to understand what you’re getting from a store-bought item unless you become an expert in analyzing labels. When you’re in the supermarket, it’s almost impossible to avoid buying a prepared item that doesn’t contain animal-based by-products.
In our new book, DIY Vegan: More Than 100 Easy Recipes to Create an Awesome Plant-Based Pantry (St. Martin’s Griffin, October 2015), we show readers how easy it is to make their own vegan pantry staples at home. Using easy-to-find, whole food ingredients that amp up flavors and nutrition, we’ve created over one hundred recipes that will stock pantry shelves, refrigerators and freezers: vegan milks, ice creams and butters made from a variety of nuts and seeds, home-ground flours, yummy sauces and spreads, snack foods (including a recipe for incredibly delicious vegan Pop Tarts) and an array of artisanal make-them-yourself cheeses. There’s even a recipe for that beloved orange cheese sauce that coats everyone’s favorite boxed mac and cheese!
Chapter 1: Stocking Your Awesome Vegan Pantry — Here, we’re going to introduce you to all the essential ingredients for a productive vegan pantry: whole grains, nuts, seeds, oils, dried fruit, sweeteners and spices.
Chapter 2: Equipment Essentials, Techniques & Troubleshooting — If you’re a novice cook, or new to setting up a vegan kitchen, this chapter will be a valuable resource. We show you the equipment we rely on daily in our kitchens and for all the recipes in this book.
Chapter 3: DIYing Your Dairy-Free Staples — You’ll learn how to make things like your own tangy spreadable Cream Cheese and delicious creamy Cashew Coffee Creamer, as well as other dairy-free staples like Cheddar Cheese, Buffalo Mozzarella, Coconut Yogurt, and Better Butter. You’ll also learn secrets for making your own fortified milk, coconut whipped cream, and creating concoctions like cookie crumbs from your magical milk leftovers.
Chapter 4: Better than Store-Bought Cereals & Snacks — We’ve got you covered in the cereals and snacks department, too. In this chapter, we show you how to recreate your favorite breakfast recipes at home and stay fueled with hearty, healthful snacks that rival all of your packaged favorites. Find recipes like Chocolate Buckwheat Crunch, Cinnamon Raisin Oats-to-Go, Snackworthy Cereals Bars, as well as Cheesy Crackers, Sweet Potato Chips, and Quick Pickles.
Chapter 5: Sensational Spreads & Sauces — Sauces and spreads can transform a head of lettuce into a gourmet salad, make toast into a meal, and add the pizzazz to a pesto pizza. With the recipes in this chapter, you can easily switch over to made-from-scratch staples like Italian Salad Dressing, Classic Hummus, Basil Spinach Pesto, Traditional Tomato Sauce, L.P.’s Worcestershire Sauce, and Sweet Ginger Stir-Fry Sauce.
Chapter 6: Make Your Own Mixes — If you’re looking for ways to save money on your grocery bill, this is the place to start. Prep ahead with your own ready-made mixes like an easy Savory Egg Mix to create morning scrambled eggs or French toast, as well as Pancake Mix, Spelt Pizza Dough Mix, Shake & Bake Herb Breading, Dill Pickle Popcorn Shaker and French Onion Dip Mix.
Chapter 7: Sweet Treats Made Real — In this chapter, you’ll find tips and techniques for making fresh flour from whole grains; piping perfect white chocolate chips; preparing pre-made pie crusts and creating all your own make-ahead favorites like frozen cookie dough and ice cream sandwiches. Find recipes for Vanilla Extract, Quick Caramel Sauce, Chocolate Pudding Snack Packs, and Peanut Butter Cups.
All of the recipes are vegan and have gluten-free options and some are from our list of raw food favorites.
Whether you are vegan, vegetarian or someone just wanting to kick the packaged-food habit, DIY Vegan will show you how to create an awesome, more compassionate kitchen powered by a pantry filled with healthy, homemade, plant-based staples.
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