Review and Giveaway: Plant-Powered Families By Dreena Burton


This is a worldwide giveaway! For details on how to enter, please read on.

official Plant-Powered Families Cover

When I first became vegan, I looked for vegan cookbooks and searched many a forum and community looking for advice on what would be good for not only a new vegan, but one with a family to cook for. Dreena Burton‘s name was always at the top of the list and so I purchased both Let Them Eat Vegan! and Eat, Drink & Be Vegan. I loved these books straight away, with their easy no-fuss recipes and wholesome ingredients. From there I purchased Dreena’s older books The Everyday Vegan and Vive le Vegan! I’ve used them so much and always find something new to try every time I flip through them. Dreena also blogs over at Plant-Powered Kitchen.

BenBella Books Plant Powered Families polenta pizza crust
Polenta pizza crust: Image courtesy of BenBella Books
BenBella Books Plant Powered Families Sweetballs
Sweetballs: Image courtesy of BenBella Books

I was really happy to learn that Dreena was writing another book, this time with a big focus on plant powering your family. Dreena has been vegan for over twenty years and has three children. Her writing style is friendly and approachable and her books are great for everyone, not just people wanting recipes and information specific to families. BenBella Books kindly sent me a review copy. I’ve cooked loads from this book and will detail that below.

The book is broken in to three sections. The first section is called An Introduction to Eating With Plant Power. Dreena writes, in response to the “isn’t it hard to raise your children on a vegan diet?” question, “it’s not the vegan part of parenting that’s difficult. It’s the parenting part”– so true! As well as new recipes, there are reader favourites which have been adapted to have allergy free ingredients or more healthy ingredient alternatives. There are sample meals plans and nutritional advice contributed by Heather Nicholds, RHN , to help answer questions about getting enough protein, iron and calcium. There is helpful information on stocking your pantry, preparing food in batches, how to wash fresh produce and tips on involving your children in food prep.

The second section is made up of the recipes, of which there are over one hundred with beautiful colour photographs.

BenBella Books Plant Powered Families smoky bean chili
Smoky Bean Chili: Image courtesy of BenBella Books

The third section is called Plant Powered Challenges and Solutions. There’s good advice on dealing with the ‘picky eater’ challenge (something we know too well in our home) and Dreena provides detailed tips and food strategies to help. I found this section really helpful, even though I’ve read so many picky-eater advice over the years. There’s a section on school and lunchbox solutions as well as tips for hosting and attending kids’ parties, which is coming in handy as we have Arthur’s birthday party coming up. There are cooking guides for beans and grains and advice on preparing your own DIY staples like nut butters and milks. The included meal plans come with a nutritional break down which I really like. There are FAQs addressing the protein-iron-calcium questions, fats, supplements and soy. I particularly like the nutrient charts for a host of foods and have been consulting them frequently.

I’ve made quiet a few recipes from Plant-Powered Families and they’ve turned out great. Arthur and I are fans of the Apple Pie Smoothie:

Plant-Powered Families: apple pie smoothie

Another smoothie favourite is the Pumpkin Pie. An awesome way for my son to eat his veggies…

Plant-Powered Families: Pumpkin pie smoothie

I made the Red Lentil Hummus for a family lunch and we stood around devouring it:

Plant-Powered Families: Red lentil hummus

I’ve made coconut ‘bacon’ a few times but this is my favourite. The addition of tahini takes it up to a whole new level (and I might have eaten this bowlful with a spoon…)

Plant-Powered Families: baconut

I made the Sweet Potato Cake and my uncle loved it and had seconds. My aunt said “don’t tell him it has sweet potato in it, he hates sweet potato”. Ha!

BenBella Books Plant Powered Families sweet potato cake
Sweet Potato Cake: Image courtesy of BenBella Books

The Crazy Brownies are awesome– made with kidney beans and sweet potato. DeeW wanted hers as a tower with fruit (she didn’t eat the fruit):

Plant-Powered Families: Crazy brownies

The Creamy Fettucine was easy to prepare and really tasty. I used wholemeal noodles for mine:

Plant-Powered Families: creamy fettucine

The Peanut Butter Pudding with Berrylicious Swirl is amazing. DeeW had decided the day before that she didn’t like peanut butter anymore. I was happy because I got this to myself and I did everything I could to get every last bit out of the blender (and in to my mouth):

Plant-Powered Families: Peanut butter berry pudding

Giveaway time! 


BenBella Books have kindly offered a copy of Plant-Powered Families to one lucky Veganopoulous reader. If you are the winner and live in the US or Canada, you will receive a print copy. If you’re anywhere else, you’ll receive a digital copy! To enter, leave a comment below and tell me if you have a favourite Dreena Burton book or recipe, or if there’s something you’d like to make from the photos above. Please feel free to share this on social media. The giveaway will run until the end of the month, August 31st 11:59pm AEST. Winner will be chosen by a random number generator and I’ll get in touch with you, so please use an email address where you can be contacted (this won’t be published).

Please check out BenBella’s website as they publish a number of great vegan books!

Good luck!