As you may remember, way back in October I participated in a pre-release blog tour for Lindsay Nixon’s newest cookbook, Happy Herbivore Light and Lean (check the post out for an interview with Lindsay and a Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe!). A few weeks later I received my copy and promised a giveaway. Giveaways are marvelous, am I right? 😉
Well, today’s the day I am going to deliver! I wanted to wait until the holidays had settled down and we were all back to regular blogging activities before hosting this giveaway. I know several bloggers took breaks and just returned recently to posting. Also, I personally didn’t do as much blog reading for my three weeks of winter break and I’m sure many of you were the same. So in light of all of this I didn’t want anyone to come back and find they missed out on this opportunity!
Disclaimer: Although I received a free copy of Happy Herbivore Light and Lean to review, I did not receive any monetary compensation and all thoughts and opinions are entirely (100%) my own.
As I’ve mentioned before, I am kind of atypical in the sense that I like to read cookbooks like I would any other fiction novel. And the night I received Happy Herbivore I got into bed and read through the entire thing just like I do when I get the newest release from my other favorite authors.
Here are my brief thoughts on the overall presentation:
The first thing I noticed as I flipped through the pages was the COLOR. There was not a single page that lacked color. With today’s technology I don’t think there is any excuse for black and white cookbooks (save for those spiral bound fundraising books made by the occasional old lady’s church group). Unlike most cookbooks that I’ve found where the only color is in the pictures of the food, each page had a complimentary color scheme and was just as fun to look at as the pictures themselves.
On each page there are extremely helpful sections to denote everything you would ever want to know about the recipe. You have allergen information at the top, nutrition information in the corners, and chef notes listed at the bottom. The majority of the page of course is taken up by the recipe with the ingredients and serving amounts on the side, and the directions written in paragraph format under the recipe description. As someone who usually writes recipes using numbers, I was at first a little surprised by how the directions were written out. After reading through the first few though, I began to like the flow and it made cooking seem more like the art it should be and less like some robotic GPS making you complete the first step before carrying onto the next (it’s something that I’m considering changing with my own recipes, but we’ll see!).
Also important to point out is that the pictures are not included on the recipe page but on the opposite facing page of the cookbook, making the directions and instructions less cluttered and giving room for a full page, full color shot of whatever you’re making.
That was the middle essence of the cookbook. The beginning consists of an introduction with a personal note from Lindsay, an index for all of the recipes listed by calorie count, tips on getting started, a shopping list, an explanation of caloric density, tips on lightening up your day, her personal health journey (loved this!) and an explanation of how to use the icons featured in the book.
At the end there is the appendix which has a glossary of ingredient descriptions, substitution ideas, kitchen prep “lingo,” additional resources, metric conversions, and an index where you can find a recipe both by its name and by ingredient.
When I spoke of this cookbook last, a few people commented to me that they didn’t understand why I was promoting something vegan. “Don’t you eat meat?” Yes, yes I do. I’m not going to pretend that I don’t eat meat and I’m not going to apologize for it either. My motivation behind reviewing this book was not to promote a vegan diet (or plant-based as many call it). I came at this from the position of someone who has food allergies, and recipes that are vegan are naturally perfect for those who are allergic to animal products like eggs, dairy, meat, fish, etc. Also, since Lindsay promotes mostly lower fat recipes, about 99% of the food is also peanut-free, nut-free and coconut-free too!
So, with that point made, here are a few recipes that I think would be great for those with food allergies or various other dietary needs when it comes to food:
- Balsamic-Dijon Vinaigrette (pg. 137)
- Homemade Ketchup (pg. 8)
- Chocolate Surprise Frosting (pg. 12)
- Brody’s Gluten-Free Flour Blend (pg. 267)
- Everyday Mushroom Gravy (pg. 189)
- Deviled “Eggs” (pg. 203)
- Pumpkin Spice Latte (pg. 256)
- Oatmeal Pancakes (pg. 97)
- Sweet Potato Ice Cream (pg. 236)
- Microwave Peach Cobbler (pg. 137)
- Breakfast Tacos (pg. 145)
- Smoky Apple Baked Beans (pg. 172)
- Asian Orange Kale Salad (pg. 179)
- Loaded Mexican Potato (pg. 195)
- Carrot Soup (pg. 236)
- Skinny Pad Thai (pg. 161)
- Nacho Bowl (pg. 93)
- Leftovers Pot Pie (pg. 121)
- Caribbean Chili (pg. 116)
A few highlights were Kaila from Healthy Helper Blog who shared Meatloaf Bites:
Laura from Plant-Based Junkies with a Thai Crunch Salad:
And the Herbivore herself with a recipe for Pumpkin Pancakes:
Finally, as indicated in the title, Happy Herbivore Light and Lean also features an exercise section with a list of exercise suggestions that are 30, 20, 15 or 10 minutes in length and all burn 100 calories. Next she gives tips on how to fit exercise into your day and continues on with pages of workouts along with her personal trainer friend Jon Warren. My favorite part of this section was “Lindsay’s Body Blast” at the end where there is a page long description of a workout that Lindsay frequently does.
Here is a little snippet from the book explaining what the “Body Blast” is:
“This all-in-one exercise is what I do when my time (and space) is limited. It’s a little on the advanced side, so you may need to work up to it. It’s a killer circuit and I have a lot of fun challenging myself, drill-instructor style, to see how fast I can move through the exercise (while still keeping proper form!) and how many rounds I can go through before I’m wasted. (Usually two, but I’m a work in progress!)”
I have yet to try this out myself, but from just reading it over I think “killer” is the perfect description. One day when I build up the guts to do it I’ll report back and tell you how far I got!
Really, there’s nothing much more to say other than I am confident that you will love this book if you love cooking and baking as much as I do. This is my second book of Lindsay’s and I have enjoyed it just as much as the first. I know the soup recipes will come in hand this winter and the fresh delicious salad ideas will be welcome during spring. The true test of a good cookbook is its versatility across not only seasons, but also palettes (in this case, I am referring to food allergies) and this book truly has something for everyone.
If you made it through all of that, bravo! And if you just skipped to the bottom to win the giveaway, I can’t really blame you for that either. This giveaway goes live as soon as I publish this post. It will end one week from tonight and I will announce the winner next Monday morning after using Random Number Generator to pick who wins the cookbook.
Unfortunately this giveaway is limited to just U.S. and Canadian citizens (I can already hear the groans… I’m sorry!). However, if you would still like to participate and someone outside of the United States or Canada wins, I will give a consolation prize of allowing you to write a guest post on my blog about whatever your heart desires (within reason of course). Sound fair?
After I announce the winner, you will have three days to contact me via e-mail with a viable address or I will be forced to pick someone else.
Like with all of my past giveaways, I am going to include a number of ways that you can enter. I do this so that if you aren’t able to complete one of them for whatever reason then you still have several opportunities to win. You don’t have to do them all, but make sure to leave a separate comment for each below::
- Tell me what your #1 deal breaker is for a cookbook (Mine is obviously good pictures and color!).
- Follow me on Bloglovin or by e-mail (there is an entry box in the right side bar below my social media icons).
- Follow me on Instagram.
- Follow me on Pinterest.
- Follow Happy Herbivore on any of her social media sites: Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook.
And if by some chance you don’t win, make sure to check the cookbook out on Amazon where you can purchase it in e-book format for $9.99 or in paperback for $11.97. Really great prices for over a 300 page cookbook!