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Plant-Powered Families Cookbook Review

100+ Kid-Tested Whole Foods Vegan Recipes by Dreena Burton

Plant-Powered Families

If I met a parent who was going vegan with the kids and having a nervous breakdown about what to feed them, worried that they'll develop malnutrition and child protective services might take them away - and the kids hate vegetables anyway, I'd say:

"Take a deep breath and read Plant-Powered Families by Dreena Burton. She's got three beautiful happy healthy children that she's raising vegan."

"Plant Powered Families has 100 recipes that children will actually eat, plus all kinds of truly helpful info & advice on stocking your kitchen, DIY staples, sample menus, picky eaters, child nutrition info, school lunches, etc. etc."

"You won't have to worry ever again about your kids eating vegan and being healthy."

I raised my three kids as vegetarians. They ate lots of pizza bagels, grilled cheese, pasta, tofu burgers, mac'n'cheese, muffins, cold cereal (forget oatmeal), pancakes, veggies & dip, PB&J, fruit and cookies.

Of course I made my kids eat their veggies like a Good Mom, and they still eat their veggies - I'm proud of that!

But the thought of 100 recipes that children will gladly eat frankly amazes me! And fills me with envy! How does Dreena do it?

I'm guessing it's not that Dreena regularly rotates 100 different fabulous recipes for her family. Probably she mostly cycles through a dozen recipes with variations, like other Moms. My apologies if that's not true, Dreena!

The beauty of Plant-Powered Families is that desperate vegan parents have 100 kid friendly healthy recipes to choose from.

They will certainly find a dozen or more recipes that their kids will like, that fit their budgets, family tastes, and cooking skills - with lots of help putting together easy menus.

Let's take a closer look at Plant-Powered Families:

Dreena Burton

Author Dreena Burton

I really like that the talking part of the book doesn't go on and on.

The first three chapters - the intro, Dreena's story and Prepping Your Kitchen cover 19 pages, and that's including full page pictures.

Part 3: Plant-Powered Challenges and Solutions succinctly covers everything you need to know about getting Picky Eaters to eat, School and Lunchbox Solutions, throwing Plant Powered Kid Parties - in 26 pages including pictures.

Part Four: Plant-Powered Support - DIY Staples and Cooking Guides, Sample Plant-Powered Meal Plans, Plant-Powered FAQs in 21 pages. Not many pictures, but lots of charts.

Speaking of pictures, almost every recipe has a gorgeous full page color photo. I LOVE that about this cookbook - hats off to photographer Nicole Axworthy!

Plant-Powered Family recipes start off with healthy breakfast food - the hardest thing to get kids to eat, in my experience.

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Chapter 4: Healthy Mornings has classics like simple oatmeal (no dreaded raisins), rice pudding, pancakes and French Toast; kid friendly smoothies (even a green smoothie); muffins and quick breads, and - special note - several snacky recipes incorporating oatmeal (devious!) that kids can eat while running out the door.

The chickpea omelet sounded delicious to me, and it's on my long list of recipes to try from this cookbook, although I'm not sure how it would go over with kids who are used to egg omelets.

On to Lunch: I'm all admiration for the delicious ways that Dreena comes up with to sneak healthy food into kids. Like spreads, dippy things, several hummus recipes - set a bowl of hummus, crackers and raw veggies in front of the kids and call it lunch! Or breakfast. Or snack.

Red Lentil Hummus

Photo Credit Nicole Axworthy

I tested Red Lentil Hummus on Pg. 87, and it turned out fabulous. My chickpea hater husband loves it - I've finally found a way to get him to eat hummus!

Tofu Feta on Pg. 70 is on the list too - perfect for tossing in salads. I've yet to confirm that children like tofu any other way but marinated and fried - but I do!

Chapter 6, Salad Dressings, Toppings and Sauces: Often make all the difference to whether kids will like something or not. Sometimes they mainly eat the topping, which is okay if the toppings are as healthy as these are.

I have big plans for Lemon Tahini Sauce on Page 100, as a sauce for wilted greens and pasta. And I'm very turned on by Polenta Croutons on Pg. 114.

Chapter 7, Dinner: The main meal for most families, what with school and work, and the one meal where the family is most often all together at the table. So here are Dreena's most substantial recipes - hearty soups & stews, pizza and pasta; burgers & fries & tacos and such; casseroles and stir fries.

Protein Ebook

No need for vegan parents to fade away for lack of veggies while the kids chow down on mac'n'cheese when you've got the Mac-Nificent recipe on Pg. 134.

Chapter 8, Sweet Treats acknowledges that sweets are an important part of life for most of us.

Of course if we're going to eat sweets, they should be both healthy and delicious. If they aren't delicious, it doesn't matter how healthy they are. Dreena understands this perfectly, and she's also tuned in to the need for nut free treats to take to school events.

I'm looking forward to making Protein Power Balls as treats for my sweet lover husband to snack on when hunger strikes. I'll have to hide some for me!

Another excellent thing about Plant-Powered Families is that kids of all ages will love these recipes. New vegans who miss their familiar foods will rejoice. So will those who are trying to get their partners to go vegan with them.

Eat Like Kids - the secret formula for vegan success!

I highly recommend 'Plant-Powered Families' for everybody age 2 and up.

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