These healthy, high-protein, lower carb and easy to make vegan lettuce wraps from the Fuss-Free Vegan Cookbook will delight your taste buds! Asian-inspired seasoned lentils with walnuts for added texture, all wrapped in crunchy fresh lettuce and topped with carrots, toasted sesame seeds, green onions and cilantro. Makes a perfect lunch, appetizer or leftovers!
Annnnd we’re back with another cookbook review! I’ve recently received a number of cookbooks from vegan bloggers so you’ll be seeing a few more awesome recipes and book suggestions coming up in February. If you missed it, check out this review and amazing recipe from a couple weeks ago from Vegan Burgers & Burritos for Brussels Sprouts & Butternut Squash Burritos!
Today’s truly delicious recipe comes from Sam Turnbull of the blog It’s Doesn’t Taste Like Chicken. Her cookbook, Fuss-Free Vegan: 101 Everyday Comfort Food Favorites, Veganized is a wonderful resource for anyone wanting to eat vegan, but still enjoy their usual favorites like pizza, pasta, muffins and cookies.
This is not a healthy food cookbook (though there are definitely some healthy recipes in it, like these Vegan Lettuce Wraps with Umami Lentils). Sam even shares in the intro:
Sometimes I love sipping a smoothie or a juice, but for the most part I just want good ol’ pancakes or a big bowl of pasta. Why did I have to become all sprouts and kale just because I was vegan?
Sam prides herself on her recipes being:
- Hearty and satisfying comfort food (for vegans and non-vegans alike)
- Quick and easy recipes that will fit right into your day-to-day life
- Trustworthy recipes that have been tested over and over again
What her recipes aren’t:
- Fake, mock, or “un” recipes
- Fancy-schmancy, bizarre, hard-to-pronounce, difficult-to-find ingredients
- Weird, bland, or scary-looking food
For this post, I chose to make her ‘Oh Mommy Umami Lettuce Wraps’: lentils with Asian-inspired seasoning, with added texture from walnuts, all wrapped in crunchy fresh lettuce and topped with carrots, toasted sesame seeds and cilantro.
Guys… this recipe is SERIOUSLY DELICIOUS. It replicates the taste of Asian lettuce wraps from your favorite restaurant, but a total vegan and healthy version. Sometimes I think about lentils being boring, but then when I have recipe like this or my Red Lentil Soup, I think, “Why don’t I eat lentils more often?!”
These lettuce wraps make a perfect lunch, appetizer or leftovers eaten cold. I can’t wait to make them again!
RELATED: Easy Vegan Tofu Lettuce Wraps
The Verdict on Fuss-Free Vegan
Overall, Fuss-Free Vegan is a cheery, colorful and approachable cookbook for anyone – vegan or not, baker or not, someone with kitchen skills or not. I think it’s a great cookbook to create a bridge for those people who want to eat vegan or try out some vegan recipes, but who love more traditional, American classics like French Toast, Grilled Cheese, Spaghetti, Pot Pie and Brownies.
For me, I personally don’t often use flours or eat a lot of bread, so while I really appreciate what Sam has created and think it’s great for many people, I tend to veer more towards the “boring and weird” food Sam calls out in her intro like grain bowls, kale and healthy desserts. Plus, many of her recipes aren’t gluten free, though it seems like you could just use Gluten Free Flour instead of All-Purpose, or gluten free breads/tortillas/etc. and the recipes would be just fine.
Still, it seems like many of the recipes are still healthier than their original animal product versions, and she certainly includes some interesting alternatives to meat and dairy that look delicious and easy. There are still quite a number of recipes I want to try out like:
- Fall-in-Love Beet & Carrot Lox
- Supreme Spinach Artichoke Dip
- Crowd-Pleasing Jalapeno Cheese Ball
- Quick & Easy Pho
- Carrot Dogs Are Totally A Thing!
- 15-Minute Peanut Noodles
- Crispy Coconut Cauliflower Tacos
- Rainbow Peanut Pineapple Kabobs
- Lighter (& Better That Way) Cauliflower Fettuccini Alfredo
- Very Yummy Heart of Palm Cakes
- Life-Changing Mozzarella
Verdict: If I’m ever in the mood for some classic comfort food, I’ll definitely turn to Fuss-Free Vegan! Get your copy on Amazon.
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Sam Turnbell, Fuss Free Vegan
serves 4 people
These healthy, high-protein, lower carb and easy to make vegan lettuce wraps from the Fuss-Free Vegan Cookbook will delight your taste buds! Asian-inspired seasoned lentils and walnuts for added texture all wrapped in crunchy fresh lettuce and topped with carrots, toasted sesame seeds, green onions and cilantro. Makes a perfect lunch, appetizer or leftovers!
10 minPrep Time
10 minCook Time
20 minTotal Time
- ¼ cup tamari or gluten free soy sauce
- 2 Tbsp rice vinegar
- 2 Tbsp agave or maple syrup
- 2 tsp sesame oil
- ½ tsp your favorite hot sauce (optional)
- 1 Tbsp light oil (Sam recommends peanut or canola, I used olive)
- 1 yellow onion, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and minced
- 1 cup red lentils
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- ½ cup walnuts, chopped
- 1 head of butter lettuce or iceberg lettuce, leaves separated but kept whole (I used romaine)
- 1 medium carrot, cut into match-sticks or grated
- 2 green onions, chopped
- 2 Tbsp toasted sesame seeds
- For the sauce, in a small bowl, mix the ingredients together and set aside.
- For the lentils, heat the oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. When hot, add the onion, garlic, and ginger and sauté for about 5 minutes, until the onion softens and begins to brown.
- Stir in the lentils and then the vegetable broth. Turn the heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for about 10 minutes, until all the broth is absorbed and the lentils are cooked. Stir in the walnuts and about half of the sauce mixture, or to taste.
- To serve, take a leaf of lettuce, fill it with the lentil-walnut mixture, top with carrot, green onions, and sesame
- seeds, and spoon as much sauce as desired over it all. Fold it like a taco and munch away!
Excerpted from Fuss Free Vegan: 101 Everyday Comfort Food Favorites, Veganized. Copyright © 2017 Samantha Turnbull. Published by Appetite by Random House®, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.