Below is a growing list of blogs, YouTube accounts, cookbooks, documentaries and more that are my favorites. These all have been helpful in my transition to veganism and living a cruelty-free lifestyle. Some open my mind and make me more aware. Some give me inspiration while cooking. And others offer me health advice when I needed it.
Cooking Blogs and Helpful Resources
- Hot for Food: I’m listing this at the top because Lauren and John are vegan cooking magicians! If I had to pick one YouTube channel or food blog as my favorite, Hot for Food would be it. On their YouTube channel you can find simple and complex recipes, but all vegan; like Tofu Benny with Vegan Hollandaise, Vegan Poutine, and fun appetizer challenges where they find what they have in their fridge and come up with a recipe on the fly. Hot for Food proves that vegan cooking doesn’t mean eating grass and dirt and that all you need is a little creativity when cooking a vegan meal.
- the Vegan 8: All of Brandi’s recipes are 8 ingredients or less, vegan, oil-free, and nearly gluten-free.
- Minimalist Baker: This is hands-down my favorite cooking website by far. Dana is a miracle worker with vegan cooking and has recipes for comfort foods and more creative foods. My Pinterest account has many a pins from her recipe collection.
- I Love Vegan: The recipe posts are similar to Minimalist Baker, but this site is where I got the bulk of my research from. There is an extensive collection of posts under the “Vegan Resources” tab that cover topics like the basics of veganism, building a healthy grocery lists, and how to transition to veganism.
- Cadry’s Kitchen: What initially drew me to this blog was not just the vegan recipes, but the posts about becoming vegan that provide advice and create a general dialogue and conversation about the vegan lifestyle. Peruse through Cadry’s website. She was a great resource for me when I was researching.
- Logical Harmony: This is the website that I turned to once I was ready to start switching all my personal care products to cruelty-free replacements. You’ll find lists for cruelty-free nail polishes, hair products, and more. Plus explanations about cruelty-free certifications and logos like Leaping Bunny.
YouTube & Social Media
- Sweet Potato Soul: Jenné describes herself as a Georgia peach living in NYC. Her YouTube videos showcase her recipes which are influenced by her southern roots (think vegan New Orleans red rice and beans). I think she’s an absolute doll and her food is beyond amazing. She’s definitely breaking the stereotype that vegans only eat salads and I’m so, so, so, soooo happy that I stumbled across her YouTube channel. Whenever I watch one of her videos I feel inspired, and fresh, and just happy. Be sure to check out her website as well. That’s where you can find the full recipes for dinners, breakfasts, and more. My favorite so far are her Vegan Chipotle Sweet Potato Enchiladas.
- Niomi Smart: She considers herself plant-based, not vegan, but I love Niomi’s positive and happy outlook in her videos as well as her fitness and cooking videos. When she does post cooking videos, they are simple and fresh with minimal processed foods. She also has a fully vegan cookbook coming out in September!
- That Vegan Couple: I found their videos a few months ago and I’ve been subscribed ever since. I would describe their channel as a toned down version of Freelee the Banana Girl’s. These two focus on the health impacts of a vegan diet but mostly focus on the ethics of animal welfare. Sometimes they can get nitpicky, but you can tell it’s because they are passionate about veganism and hold it dear to their hearts; it doesn’t come out of hate.
- @conscious_muscle: What do you get with you cross a manbun, a muscled-out weightlifter, and a vegan? You get Jordan David, AKA conscious_muscle on Instagram. Jordan was the guy I turned to when I needed help nailing down a vegan meal plan and he spends his time on his farm sanctuary and trying to break the stereotype that vegans don’t get enough protein. He also has a YouTube channel that has been slowly growing.
- Forks Over Knives: Curious about the health benefits of a vegan/plant-based diet compared to a standard omnivore diet? This documentary is thoroughly interesting as well as informative which might be why so many vegans recommend watching it. Forks Over Knives helped me make the selfish, personal decision to switch to a plant-based diet for my health.
- Cowspiracy: This is one of my favorite documentaries to date. Cowspiracy focuses on the detrimental environmental impacts of animal agriculture. Once I saw how much land and water it takes to raise 10 cattle compared to growing a vegetable garden for a family of four, I was blown away. This documentary hit close to home because I currently live in Iowa where cattle and pig farming is a big industry. Every day I pass at least one slaughter truck on my way to or from work.
- Muscles by Brussels Radio!: Giacomo and Dani are competitive physique competitors and vegan. They talk about topics like cutting fat, bulking, and protein as vegan weightlifters.