Some News


Every New Year’s Day for the past few years — and by New Year’s Day, I of course mean, the first day of school — I’ve had the same resolution-y thought: We need to eat less meat in our house. It’s a low-rumbling call year-round, but something about September and the ramped-up schedules and textbook pile-ups on the kitchen counter makes it feel like we’re all in the right frame to do the hard work of changing courses. What usually happens, though, is after a few weeks of salad pizzas and black bean burritos, I end up falling back into my dinner default mode, which, for the most part could be described as “chicken thighs plus something.”

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For those of you who have been following along, you know that this past year was different and that we’ve dramatically cut back on our meat consumption. Why? Maybe it was because the kids are older and not only are they more likely to venture out of their comfort zones (read: tofu) but they are more invested in the formerly abstract idea of doing their part to combat climate change. Maybe it was because there are so many chefs and cookbook authors giving vegetables the star treatment and I’ve never been more inspired to spin an eggplant into dinner gold. Maybe it’s because so many of my friends are heading in the plant-based direction. Maybe it’s because Andy and I are getting older (and we’re watching our parents getting older) and dialing back on animal protein feels like the safest way to address our mid-life crises.

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Mostly, though, I think the reason why we’ve been able to stick to our vegetarian vow is because we came up with a real plan: We wouldn’t get rid of meat entirely (anyone who has spent time in this space knows how hard it would be for us to say goodbye to our pork chops and meat ragus and chicken dinners) but we would limit those dishes to weekends and special occasions. Then from Monday through Friday, my family of four would be The Weekday Vegetarians, whichin addition to sounding like the name of a folk-rock band at a small liberal arts college, will be the title of my next book.

And that’s my news! I’m working on the fourth book in my Dinner: A Love Story series and I couldn’t be more excited.

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Like the rest of my books, The Weekday Vegetarians will focus on dinner, it will cater to busy families, and the recipe development will happen in real time. In other words, every dish that makes the cut will be a meal that was served on a weeknight in the harsh light of real life, not in a studio or a test kitchen.

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As usual, I plan on documenting a lot of that real life here on Dinner: A Love Story and on instagram so be sure to follow along. While you’re at it, please please send me your own ideas and inspiration. After so many years of writing this blog, there’s one thing I know for sure: dinner is a lot more fun when we’re all in it together.


Last week’s dinner: Fried tofu tacos


Greens, greens, greens. We are eating a LOT of them these days.


As always, follow my progress on instagram.

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99 Comments

S

Super exciting- I love your cookbooks and hope this one will have real meal solutions regular cooks interested in reducing meat consumption can implement. Most vegetarian cookbooks are just not something geared towards regular every day in the trenches cooks!

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S

Yeah!!! Would love for you to include notes on how to add meat for those in our families who might not be 100% on board – similar to your deconstructed meals where you build a base meal with ability to vary for others but everyone is eating the same basic thing!!

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Laura T

This COULD NOT come at a better time for me! I’m so ready, and have spent a dumb amount of time working to find plant based family recipes (also, have I used this research as a procrastination crutch for real work?–YES). I can’t wait, and big congratulations dearest Jenny!

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Lisa C

So excited about this! I’ve not quite able to jump on the tofu train but really excited about some practical veggie-forward meals. I have been working on cutting our grocery budget a little while still eating healthy and working full time. Meat is the area that makes the most sense to cut back on so this book will for sure earn a spot on my cookbook shelf!

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Elizabeth

Wonderful news–thanks for letting us know! I have and love all your cookbooks and am very much looking forward to this one, especially as I am a vegetarian with two vegetarian daughters.

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Divya

Yay yay yay! I can’t wait for this! Congratulations on your next book. This sounds exciting a just what my family and I need. ❤️

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Jessie

I’m so excited! We’ve been trying to make the change, but veggie cookbooks are so labour intensive and require ingredients we never seem to have. But we use your three books so religiously that I know this will be the platform we need (no pressure :)) Eagerly awaiting news that pre-orders can be made.

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Eliz

Congratulations! Can’t wait to see it. We have also been trying to be more plant based for the last few years so here are a couple ideas for you to cover: how to feed very hungry/active/teen people – vegegtarian is easy for my slow middle aged woman body but I feel like I’d have to cook all day to create enough food for the three in my household with squirrel metabolisms who are constantly coming home starving from hours of running, biking, skiing, etc. Second, I know you said you will focus on dinner, but another thing I’ve found hard is lunch. If you are a work from home/stay at home/bring lunch from home person you often rely on leftovers for lunch and that’s just harder without the meat. Maybe a chapter on ‘what to eat during the day so you’re not starving an hour before dinner and give up and order meat lovers pizza?”

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Cookie

I’m very excited to hear this! We have been weekday (and most weekends too) pescetarians for the last year. More often than not, it’s just a vegetarian meal. Looking forward to seeing the new recipes 🙂

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Laura lee

This is sooo true! My oldest just said to me that when we have black bean burritos she just doesn’t feel full – could we please do more chicken or turkey ones. Thank you!!

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Kristin P

This is the BEST news! I’m a vegetarian of 27 years but my husband and kids still eat meat. I can’t eait to see what veg meal ideas you have to expand my repertoire that will appeal to them.

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awads

We literally had this conversation last night, over dinner of chicken milanese (which YOU inspired via instagram!). We always have Meatless Monday, but we are ready to move more intentionally into a plant-based lifestyle. I like the idea of adding more plants, subtracting more meat, but not giving anything up entirely. We are all in! Happy to follow along with you!

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Lindsay

This is the best news!! I have a vegetarian daughter and have committed to making all of our dinners vegetarian-based (and then adding meat for the rest of us), but it has been getting challenging to find things that will please everyone. THANK YOU!!!

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Bethley

What great news! We’ve tried to be more vegetarian in my house and wind up defaulting a lot to pasta and mostly carbs. My husband refuses to eat any bean while simultaneously wanting to be a vegetarian. I’d love to eat more plant-based proteins. Send help!

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Meg

Yes! The bean issue is real. For us it’s a family member with a health issue that precludes high fiber dinners. This has been my stumbling block to less meat- I can’t default to beans (which I love).

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Bianca

Thumbs Up! Most vegetarian cookbooks don’t seem like they are for the every day meals or cooks (or geared towards younger children). I own all the DALS books and love the everyday approach to food. I’ve been struggling to go more vegetarian with the family and can’t wait for this!

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Milka

So exciting! This is the book I have been waiting for you to write! I love your other books but I am a pescatarian so this book will be perfect!

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Sarah Mayeda

OMG I love this idea and can’t wait for the book! We are mostly vegetarian in our house too – me 100%, and my husband and two daughters (ages 6 and 9) nearly so because I do the shopping and most of the cooking and because they are willing. A huge time saver for us is having some grains and maybe a batch of beans ready to go on Sunday night. We can then create magic throughout the week with those as a base. We also start the rice cooker at least 1 morning each week with white or brown rice, which the kids will mix with cheese, greens, and whatever beans we have prepared. Toppings (e.g. shredded cheese, sour cream, chopped tomatoes) make all meals better here. I don’t know how we could eat the way we do without a rice cooker and a crock pot (or Instant Pot).

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Gabrielle

I signed up for the meal plans from clean food dirty girl dot com. It’s vegan, but the creators are not judgmental of those dabbling in vegetarian foods. I’ve a child who, for medical reasons, has not been able to digest meat. It’s set up as batch cooking, so a bunch of stuff is made on Sunday to utilize throughout the week. We’ve enjoyed everything we’ve made so far. Monkey and me kitchen adventures dot com is another great collection of recipes. It’s a mom and sister who put together recipes for the busy son/brother and sister in law who are both busy professionals with limited time and energy. There are, of course, thousands of websites for vegetable based foods, but I’ve found both of these to be reliable and palette friendly. I look forward to reading your take on the 80/20 diet, or whatever you want to call it. I know your recipes will be just as reliable.

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Sharon in Scotland

I tried a meatless March a few years ago. I fell off the wagon once and felt pleased with myself at the end, so it only seemed right to carry on. I didn’t want to give up meat completely, so now I try hard to be meatless during the week, but come dinner on Friday………all bets are off. I have one red meat meal and chicken etc for the rest until the end of Sunday. I am single and don’t live with anybody, so I don’t have to battle with anybody.

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Katie Weltner

I love this idea! I’ve been cutting back on meat a lot too, but don’t have the heart to go cold turkey (hah). The hardest thing for me is getting enough protein. It’s so easy to just add cheese to a dish, but dairy doesn’t sit very well with me so I’ve had to get creative. I can’t wait to read your ideas! A few things that have worked well for me:

– Adding roasted chickpeas to basically any salad
– Blending white beans into my roasted veggie blended soups (tomato soup, carrot curry soup, etc.)
– Tempeh, fried up deliciously and packed into a burrito

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Kristin Russo

So looking forward to this! One of our faves is a cauliflower puttanesca that I found in Real Simple ages ago.

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Mary

Woohoo! Excited for this. Spent the last 6 months being a Monday-Thursday vegetarian and am currently attempting to go all vegetarian until Thanksgiving… excited to see what you come up with!

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Jenny Martin

jenny! you are always so open & honest, and the part about your parents aging and this being a good way to combat that…so true. i consistently fail at veggie first meals! literally counting down until your publication day!!!! xo

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Melissa

This is so exciting!! My 11 year old daughter is vegetarian and by default, so are we most days. If you need any help testing recipes, let me know!

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Courtney

This is so incredible. The tides are turning. It’s powerful and critical that a voice like yours supports a move towards more plant-based eating. Thank you!

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Zoe

This is so great!! Some “vegetarian” meals are not really meals, or are too complicated and require things you don’t have around…. I’m similarly cutting back on meat a lot and I know your recipes are going to be great and simple!

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Jill Morse

I want it NOW! I am a long time follower with an only child. My daughter is a junior in HS. I’m about to leave for yet another sports event and will be home around 9:30 pm to have “dinner”. Needless to say, I am a meal planner, a Sunday prepper, and a DALS InstaGram follower!
She has asked for more plant based meals. We have been on the roller coaster too! She now begins to understand health benefits, but mostly her concerns are environmental/climate.
Thank you thank you thank you. In the meantime, what are some of your fav’s?

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Diana

This is awesome. We do meatless Mondays but I would love to have more ideas to expand it throughout the week. Pasta e ceci, tacos with the baja black beans from the Rebar cookbook, and pad thai with tofu are on the regular Monday rotation at our house.

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Charlene

I’m so excited for this book! After I learned to cook from your 3 previous books, I’m now on a quest to eat a more clean/plant-based diet. I have found that most of the popular cookbooks that I have usually have a few roasted vegetables recipes and some salads for vegetables, or they have hard to find ingredients for those not living in the US, or they are simply not budget friendly. That’s why I’m really excited for your book.

If it’s possible, I’d like to request some recipes that are toddler/pre-schooler friendly, and not just recipes that are acceptable for older kids and adults. Thank you in advance!

When can we pre-order your book?!

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Stephanie

I am beyond excited for this new book of yours! It’s exactly what I’ve been looking for. I find so many great Vegetarian cookbooks, but they are made for people who can afford to spend hours in the kitchen, and /or those with out picky eater children. DALS & The Playbook are my cookbook bibles. Looking forward to seeing what comes next from you!

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Megan

Love the concept and title! If you need any real test cooks (i.e.: real busy, real parents, real meat-avoiders, and totally not really qualified, heh heh) I’d love to offer my services 🙂

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Stephanie Pease

Hoooraaaaaay!!! I couldn’t be happier about this, or happier for you, Jenny Rosenamazing!
I have every single one of your cookbooks, and love them all!
Aaaaaaand recently my husband discovered he needs to be dairy free AND SOY FREE!
He’s trying to kill me…. could some of your recipes be workable for these limitations?
Please pretty please!! We both want to be eaters of less meat, and it is HARD with a soy and dairy allergy!!

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Stephanie Pease

(not sure this posted correctly, trying again)
Hoooraaaaaay!!! I couldn’t be happier about this, or happier for you, Jenny Rosenamazing!
I have every single one of your cookbooks, and love them all!
Aaaaaaand recently my husband discovered he needs to be dairy free AND SOY FREE!
He’s trying to kill me…. could some of your recipes be workable for these limitations?
Please pretty please!! We both want to be eaters of less meat, and it is HARD with a soy and dairy allergy!!

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Emily

Woohoo! This comes just as I’m making the transition to vegetarianism myself. So looking forward to seeing your spin on it!

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Melissa h

Yumm bowls! Lots of prep but that prep can be turned into other dinners (fried rice, taco salad, burritos etc) and yumm bowls are a family favorite.

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Rachael

100% buying this! As the owner of your first two cookbooks, my only complaint was not enough vegetarian recipes! I’m so excited for this!

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Ellen

Wonderful news! Really looking forward to this. Would love a good recipe(s) for veggie burgers that don’t fall apart. 🙂

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Caitlyn

As a long time reader and a long time vegetarian, I am almost embarrassingly excited about this announcement. WAHOO!!!!

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Rae Hoekstra

Yay!!! So excited for this – my kiddos are a bit younger than yours but my 12-year old son has been asking to cook more often, and is highly concerned about the future of the planet so we talk a lot about sustainable eating, and how we can eat more vegetarian. He’s wanted to start cooking dinners for our family so he started with the sloppy joes from Dinner: A Playbook last week for the first time. Knowing you’ll have a cookbook to help us with this is so exciting!! Looking forward to it!!

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Monica

How do you do it? reading my mind yet again! DH has been vegetarian since January which has been a challenge with two protein loving teenage boys in the house. The veggie recipes you’ve already posted have become part of our regular rotation. Can’t wait for an entire book of them!

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Erin

This sounds amazing!!! I can’t wait. And as someone with a dairy allergy, I’d love to see some vegetarian dinner recipes whose last ingredient isn’t “1 cup Parmesan cheese, for serving.” (Which should really read, “1 cup of Parmesan cheese for essential flavor, mouthfeel, general satisfaction, and satiety.”)

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Starr

Yes yes! I can’t eat dairy or eggs and so many vegetarian recipes have cheese in them. Leave out the cheese and you’d better have some excellent flavorful substitute or else the dish will be lame!

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Nicole Correia

I love this! I’ve been a follower of your blog and fan of your cookbooks and I’ve been thinking about how to do exactly this (although with a 5 year old and 8 year old…)
I really look forward to your book – best of luck with the writing!

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Eileen

Incredibly excited about this news! Upping our veggie intake has been on my brain and your cookbooks are my go-tos for weekday meals. Really looking forward to it and hopefully seeing you more here to test ideas!

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Laura

My husband I want to cut down on our meat consumption but we’re typically low carb and I feel like I struggle to get enough protein on a plant based diet. How would you approach a low-carb/high-protein vegetarian meal?

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Beck

Another fan joining the chorus of excitement! I also have all your books, and many of your recipes are family favourites. We eat probably 3 meat free meals a week, and have the benefit of tofu loving kids, but I do find veg meals you can prep/cook ahead or freeze a bit harder, so looking forward to your ideas there… and again, congratulations! We’re all looking forward to it 🙂 Any idea on a publication date yet?

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Angela

Congrats! Thrilled for your next book – I wish it would be published tomorrow. Our family too is evolving into a less meat philosophy. My teen has been considering a vegetarian diet change so this book is exactly what I am looking for.

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Mrs. Molly Craig

Congratulations!!! We cook mostly vegetarian as well, so your next book sounds PERFECT (and I love the title!). I can’t wait!! xo

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Mary

Yay! My family is moving in this direction too and I’m soooo excited for your book.
Hurry up and write already! 🙂

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Ess

Exciting!! Our go-to is the tofu technique from F52’s genius recipes where you toss cubes in cornstarch and fry them. Suddenly delicious crunchy protein for whatever we’re making. We’ve applied the technique to mushrooms too, with great results. Use ’em in curries, burrito fillings, on pasta…

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Molly

Congratulations on the book! We are also eating less meat, although it’s not a hard and fast rule around here. I definitely find most vegetarian cookbooks much too fussy and preachy for me. As a Southerner in a small-ish town, I also find them way too focused on the urban Northeastern market – I’d like these authors to try making half their recipes with access only to a Kroger or Harris Teeter. No Asian specialty market, no Trader Joe’s, no Whole Foods!

Instead I tend to focus on our usual favorites, but cutting back on the meat amount. For example, 2 chicken breasts poached and shredded might stretch over 3 nights for 4 people. First a little bit (say, 1/4) in quesadillas that have been bulked up with black beans and cheese and served with tomato soup, the next night (1/2) in chicken salad open faced sandwiches served with sliced tomatoes and grilled corn, and then the final 1/4 used up sprinkled on homemade pizza with pesto sauce, mozzarella, and mushrooms.

I would love to find a cookbook (or resource) that helps with more ideas like that, but it’s hard. Probably not what you’re trying to do either, but I really do look forward to seeing what you come up with. Your recipes have been such a mainstay for us over the years!

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Emily Barnett

Hooray!!!!!! I’m super excited for this one. Thank you, Thank you! My family is evolving with your family. I use your cookbooks ALL THE TIME. This will be welcome addition!

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Karin S

I know there is a lot around eating a lot less meat these days but as a recovering vegetarian, want to point out that eating protein is important but there are certain nutrients that just aren’t available to us on a plant based diet. Yes to smaller portions of animal protein & something like meatless Mondays but it’s so important to understand our need for nutritionally dense food. That means sustainably sourced animal protein, organic fruits & vegetables wherever possible. Personally I eat about 4 oz at a meal with poultry, pork, & seafood as my sources & I know where my food comes from. It’s a luxury to be able to say that I know but I happily give up eating meals out to have delicious food from the Farmers’ Market & small meat & seafood sellers. Good luck with the book as I’m sure there will be lots of recipes I can include in my meals.

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Sara White

Congratulations, this is exciting news! I love that the recipe development is happening in a real-life environment – it’s nice to know that the recipes are something I can *really* make at the end of a long work day!

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joy

I am SO excited for this! Please try to channel your past life when your kids were still little and include recipes that are fast and easy to make even if toddlers are clinging to your legs and hitting each other with magnatiles while you are trying to finish making dinner in the half hour you have between when you get home and when it’s time to eat (ie before they really melt down into a hangry puddle). I love vegetarian food so much, but the more plant-forward a meal is, the more chopping and prep it seems to take, chopping and prep that is really hard at the witching hour of 6:15 on a weeknight.

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Anna

Hi! I love your books and think, this one will be a huge hit, too! I’ve got two recommandations för you:
1. Multicoloured fries (beet, carrots, sweet potato, Zucchini…) and a dip (e.g. yogurt and herbs) – my toddlers devores it, no matter which veggies in it
2. Feta with Olive oil, onions, Sun dried tomatoes and olives on top => dip it with sourdough bread!
(I also love vegetable Lasagne, but never Foundation a quick recipe… and am searching for a good recipe of veggie waffles which I’ve wanted to make sinne forever…)
Hoping to help you a bit and wishing you Good luck!*

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Heidi G

Awesome! I’ve been wondering what you’ve been working on Although I don’t think we can go full on vegetarian, I would love meals that are veggie forward but that my picky kids and meat eating husband can all be happy. Love your blog and I have all your books! Please keep writing for the nyt too!

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Shannon

Yes! I’m so thrilled to hear this. We too have moved in this direction but too many times I fall back to animal proteins because I’m left stumped at 6:30pm on what to serve. Can’t wait to see the results.

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Erin

Yay! Literally two days ago I pulled one of your cookbooks out to help me meal plan and thought to myself, “I know they’ve been eating more plant-based meals. I hope she writes a cookbook about that.”
Congrats! And I’m so excited!

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Maryann

I am right here with you on this journey to weekday vegetarianism, and so very glad that you are writing a book on it. I just said to my partner this weekend “we need to eat less meat!” and he asked when we last bought meat and neither of us could remember. So we’re doing it! But boy we could use ideas. So high fives and THANK YOU. We love your writing and your recipes.

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Adrienne

LOVE this. My husband and I have been trying to reduce our meat consumption at dinner though not every weeknight but at least 2 nights a week and would like to expand to 4 or 5. For the love of God I need ideas so we don’t eat canned black beans doctored up with onion, avo, lime or eggs and greens every night. I love cooking, cook most nights in but I really never realized how meat dependent I was…chicken and veg, grilled flank steak and veg, pork and veg, meat tacos, sausage pasta. I am paralyzed by vegetarian meals! This is going to be great!!!

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Anna

This makes me so happy!!! I’m a long-time vegetarian but also EXTREMELY invested in moving away from the vegetarian / non-vegetarian binary. The more models of cutting back on meat and dialing up the plants, the better! I’m so excited for this book.

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K

Yes ! Side question: do you notice a difference in your health, body, and skin after eating way more veggies?

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Ansley

So, so excited to hear this! I’m a lifelong vegetarian so this will be the first of your books that I have purchased… and I will do so with great pleasure!!

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sarah

So excited BUT I really want to know how to make those yummy tofu tacos and the ricotta green thing you posted pictures of!

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Jill

This is the best news I’ve heard since April, when I decided to go vegetarian!! As a full time working mom, I have eaten sooo many frozen black bean burgers and tofu stir fry. Having a cook book of how to do weekdays would be a game changer.

As a physician, and someone who loves the world and doesn’t want to see it burn up, your move toward plant based shows all comers that it’s not only possible, but easily doable. Thank you!

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adams

I love September, they are always great for me, there are many emotions during this time for me, the food is really attractive. They are really a good choice. Thanks for your sharing

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adams

I love September, they are always great for me, there are many emotions during this time for me, the food is really attractive. They are really a good choice. Thanks for your sharing.

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Susan

I have been a vegetarian since my teens (I do eat diary and eggs). My husband is an omnivore. I could not be more excited about this upcoming cookbook!

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Mary ONeil

This is such a big leap. I would love to go vegan, and feel it would be a pleasant change…but my husband is not on the same page. Thanks for these recipes. I will start with Meatless Mondays!

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Sarah

Hooray!! What a great idea; you’d better believe I’ll be first in line to grab the new book. As a longtime fan since your Cookie days (I still have the “make dinner, not war” bumper sticker) I have two things I’d love to see:

1. Family-friendly recipes for younger kids who might not be as sophisticated eaters as your girls (ie for whom a dish made entirely of eggplant just MIGHT be a deal breaker) , and
2. Heftier, more protein-rich meals that would appeal to boys; I do my best to sneak in vegetarian meals during the week but my boys end up ravenous after a meal of lentils and/or tofu despite my best attempts!

Can’t wait to see what you come up with! Thanks for all the great recipes so far.

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Meredith Deegan

OMG I can’t believe I missed this when it was posted. Well, actually I can because I was in the middle of my own family plant-based experiment with The Happy Pear ‘Happy Gut’ course. It was a big win for my cooking skills, but a big fail for family dinner (total mutiny). So excited to get ideas on how I can balance my love of things veggie with my family’s loathing of them.

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