A key to being successful when you are transitioning to a new healthier diet is to build a collection of recipes you enjoy making and eating. This is especially true when adopting a live or raw food diet. Here are my top five picks for living food recipe books. These are the ones I used in creating many of the recipes here on this site. I start with what is in the book and then make it my own. I often find I need to add a bit more seasoning and spice to suit our tastes.
#1 Ani's Raw Food Kitchen by Ani Phyo - Ani is my favorite author. She has several wonderful books and releases new ones regularly. She gets my #1 and #2 slots. This book has a wide range of easy recipes great for beginners and long time live food chefs. The Black Sesame Sunflower Bread was the first dehydrated bread I tried and the Mediterranean Dolmas are a quick and easy snack using collard greens.
#2 Ani's Raw Food Essentials by Ani Phyo– This one provides many recipes that serve as the foundation for creating your own unique style. The Buckwheat Pizza Crust is easy and delicious. The Korean Style “Stir-Fried” Kelp Noodles satisfy the Chinese food cravings.
#3 Raw Food Made Easy for 1 or 2 People by Jennifer Cornbleet – This is especially good for beginners. All her recipes are very easy to follow and use no more than a food processor and/or blender. NO dehydrator needed. Don’t miss her Walnut Pate, Walnut Brownies or her Apple Crisp. While this is number 3 on my list, if you are new to raw foods, consider getting this one first.
#4 RAWvolution: Gourmet Living Cuisine by Matt Amsden – While some of these recipes are a bit more complicated many are quick and easy and offer a more gourmet experience. The Onion Bread, Eggless Egg Salad and Thai Curry Soup are regulars in our house. His second book The RAWvolution Continues is great too.
#5 Living on Live Food by Alissa Cohen – This was one of the first books I used. It has an extensive section about what raw food is, how to shop, why to eat raw, personal stories AND it still has hundreds of recipes. I especially liked her tips on how to begin and transition to eating and making raw food. My twist on the Marinara Sauce and Chili recipes (yes, raw chili) are included here on this site.
There are so many more great recipe books available covering all types of foods and all skill levels. I also like The Goddess of Raw Foods by Nwenna Kai, and The World Goes Raw by Lisa Mann and First Generation Raw by Deborah Imani. For even more great recipe vegan and raw vegan books click here.
Take a trip to your local bookstore, grab a stack of books and find a place to sit down. Scan each one to find the ones that speak to you. Fortunately you can find many great recipes on-line and many of the above chefs have YouTube videos of dishes in their books.
Find a raw food buddy and share and swap recipes. I often find that I pass up great recipes (like the eggless egg salad) that my raw food buddy is drawn to. She’ll say “Try this one its good!” We help each other to keep adding to our repertoire.
Do you have a favorite recipe book or website? Please share so we can all expand our raw food world.