New Release Review: One Part Plant

Posted March 7, 2017 by Lory in reviews / 12 Comments

Jessica Murnane, One Part Plant: A Simple Guide to Eating Real, One Meal at a Time (2017)

I’m not a fan of the term “vegan,” which sounds like its adherents come from another planet, nor of defining an eating style based solely on what it doesn’t include. So Jessica Murnane’s positive, joyous approach to “plant-based” eating appealed to me from the start.  Eating should be fun and delicious as well as healthy, she maintains, and her recipes provide a very doable path to achieving that. The basics for cooking novices are provided, with simple but well-thought-out recipes for dishes like Red Lentil Soup and Spicy Broccoli Rice, and introductions to some less familiar ingredients like miso, sumac, and tahini.

For those with more experience, there are also some more complex and interesting recipes to try, like Roasted Carrots with Sprouted Lentil Tabbouleh, Creamy Mushroom Lasagna, and a non-dairy version of Saag Paneer. The dessert section looks particularly scrumptious, with some creative combos like Almond Butter and Blueberry Cookies and Honey Peppermint Cups. All the recipes are gluten-free, but nuts are used plentifully.

Along the way, Jessica shares her own journey from subsisting primarily on candy and diet soda (and having some serious health problems) to being a “wellness ambassador” who wants to encourage everyone just to try eating at least one plant-based meal per day. She provides information on the health benefits that may be experienced from taking such a step, and also on such topics as eating plant-based in social situations or in restaurants. You can easily skip these portions, if you just want to cook, or you can sample them at will according to your areas of interest.

Her engaging and nonjudgmental style makes her easy to relate to, and her enthusiasm is infectious. Beautifully produced and photographed, this is a book that goes all out to tempt you to sample the joys of plant-based eating, and I expect it will succeed with many readers.

Thanks to TLC Book Tours for the opportunity to review this delicious book. See the tour page for more reviews and information, and learn more at the HarperCollins book page.

New Release Review: One Part PlantOne Part Plant by Jessica Murnane
Published by Harper in March, 2017
Format: Hardcover from Publisher

A copy was received for review purposes from the publisher. No other compensation was received, and all opinions expressed are my own.



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12 responses to “New Release Review: One Part Plant

  1. I’m not a big fan of the word vegan either… or of the concept, to be honest. I’m far too fond of eggs, milk, and cheese! Not to mention seafood. But I am definitely on board with eating less meat and more plants. This sounds like a good cookbook for moving in that direction. I will see if my library has a copy, so I can try some of the recipes. 🙂

    • It’s good to expand our cooking repertoire, even if we’re not going to change our eating style completely. I like that she doesn’t say one has to eat this way all the time.

      • Yes, and that was one of the things in your review that piqued my interest. For many people, it becomes almost a religion, or at least a cause. A college acquaintance of mine proselytizes so vociferously on the subject, and with so little respect for the feelings and intelligence of nonvegans, that I have mostly withdrawn from contact with him.

        • Ugh, such encounters can be so horrid. I do not think Jessica is of that persuasion – she just wants to share her discoveries and encourage people to make their own choices. I can wholeheartedly support that.

  2. My first exposure to vegan cooking was not a happy one – I expected far more use of seasonings so the results were extremely disappointing.

    • Seasonings can make a huge difference! I’m glad to see that these recipes pay careful attention to flavor and to making food attractive and tasty.

  3. This sounds good to me. I’m always looking for ways to get inspired in the kitchen using simple, healthy ingredients. With 3 kids it isn’t easy to make everyone happy, but every once in a while I find something new and different that everyone likes (which makes up for all the times I don’t)!

    • I’m so glad my son is not a picky eater (and loves veggies). I could definitely see trying some of these recipes on him.

    • I love cookbooks with color photos. This one doesn’t have one for every single recipe, but for a good majority of them, and they all look amazing.

  4. I really enjoyed this too! And as I mentioned in my review, the honey peppermint cups were amazing. I’ve also made them with vanilla extract (OK) and orange extract (pretty fantastic) since then 🙂