My New Cookbook is LIVE!

BHD 3D Cover

Make holidays and special occasions deeply satisfying and a little bit surprising with these 25 fun, delicious, vegan friendly, and easy to make recipes.

Celebrate the holidays with your loved ones with these delicious festive dishes, whatever their dietary preferences.

#1 International Bestselling Author, Amanda Leeber’s vibrant debut holiday cookbook shows you how to incorporate nutrient-rich and delicious meals using plant based, whole food ingredients that are better for you and still worthy of your holiday table.

This simple and easy to follow cookbook is completely meat and dairy-free. It also includes gluten-free, paleo and freezer-friendly recipes so you can prepare these delicious meals in advance to save you time and reduce your stress during the holidays.

This cookbook was designed especially for home cooks who will be ready to open their kitchens to vegan recipes, healthier favorites, and guests with multiple dietary restrictions.


Menu plans are included for the 7 most popular holidays in the U.S:

  • Valentine’s Day
  • St. Patrick’s Day
  • Easter
  • Independence Day
  • Halloween
  • Thanksgiving
  • Christmas
  • New Year’s Eve


Best Holiday Dishes for the Vegans in Your Life includes:

  • Accessible meals that are good for your health and good for the environment, including burgers, pastas, stew, mushroom wellington, steak and potatoes, stuffed bell peppers, frittata, flatbread, cake, pie, cookies, chocolates, truffles, and even a show-stopping pear tart.
  • An entire chapter on how to make your pantry vegan friendly with the most commonly used food staples.
  • Beginner’s resources: great resources for new vegans and the vegan-curious, including the top ten kitchen tools, where to start with the top health and nutrition documentaries and reference books, and the absolute best nutrition website everyone should know about!
  • A free preview of Simple Staples for Vegan Cooking coming soon that will help you to get your pantry in order, including bonus recipes for butter, egg substitutes, Parmesan cheese, and a great nut butter milk hack.

This cookbook will empower you to take control back of your health and immune system with these vegan friendly dishes to share with the ones you love and enjoy fearless entertaining and stress-free holiday parties that can include everyone.

Don’t wait. Start planning for the next holiday in your home and invite everyone you love, regardless of dietary restrictions.

ADVANCE PRAISE for the Best Holiday Dishes for the Vegans in Your Life Cookbook

“Thanks for getting us creative in the kitchen. This book overall was approachable and easy to follow. Each recipe we tried was an effective walk through, each step being straight forward and sensible. We appreciate that! The things we tried were all delicious. Here are some dives into the thoughts we had while making and enjoying.

  • Rosemary Flatbread: Made it 3 times! Looking forward to making again and again. Rosemary was perfectly balanced. The texture and density was a happy medium between light and hearty. We initially ate ours with a salad and some lentil soup
  • Cauliflower Steak: OMG that marinade. Instructions flawless-cooked to perfection. So good and refreshing.
  • Vegetable Frittata: Fulfilling, flavorful, versatile.  We did salsa on top! Excited to try with mushroom gravy. Was a little uncertain whether the consistency of batter was how it should be, but it baked to perfection
  • Caramel Apple Nachos: The caramel sauce is absolutely our favorite vegan caramel out of the handful that we’ve tried.  The recipe makes a fairly decent amount of caramel which is perfect for next-day munching.”
    —Stephanie and Jeremiah (Professionally Trained Chef), Recipe Testers

“The cookbook itself is very clear. I found the directions easy to follow. I feel that anyone who needed to cook for a vegan could follow these recipes and be successful. It is good for a family of vegans and meat eaters.  Vegans can have a full plate while it would work as a great veggie side for meat eaters.”
—Carla B, Grocer and Home Cook

“I tried the Butternut Penne and it was delicious!!!  I am excited to try more of the recipes and this coming from a devote meat lover.”
—Diane W., Travel Agent and Home Cook

“The toasted garlic butter noodles are FIRE! The ingredients and measurements are on point. The instructions are detailed yet simple. The recipe is also easy to modify. I’m not a master chef, so I’m glad this dish is super easy to make. It makes me proud to have made a decent dish. I’m definitely learning a lot from Leeber.”
—Nancee-Laetitia Marin, Home Cook and Recipe Tester is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to

Top 10 Immune System Boosting Foods

I was going to post a recipe for some great Irish Whiskey Truffles in anticipation of St. Patrick’s Day but thought you’d appreciate a list of foods that help strengthen your immune system more, given the state of the world as we know it. 

I’ll post the truffles recipe tomorrow.

In addition to washing your hands and staying home as much as you can, you can keep your body healthy by staying active and eating vibrant foods. In fact, one of the easiest ways to super-charge your immune system is to eat more fruit and vegetables. 

“…by equating veggies with food, our bodies may be using them as a signal to upkeep our immune system. Thus, “the old recommendation ‘eat your veggies’ has a strong molecular basis.” Dr. Michael Greger, The Broccoli Receptor: Our First Line of Defense

But not just any. Below are the top ten fruits and vegetables that will keep your immune system strong and can aid in increased immune function. There are plenty of other foods that do this, but these ten pack a big, nutritious punch.

These delicious fruits are loaded with antioxidants. But don’t forget the peel. It is loaded with them. Be sure to buy organic to avoid pesticides. Red Delicious is a winner here!

This vegetable is part of the cruciferous family and is an excellent source of phytochemicals, helping to fight the carcinogenic effects of pesticides and other toxins.

Brussels sprouts
Another cruciferous vegetable that neutralizes carcinogens.

Not only does this vegetable boost your immune system, but it also keeps breast cancer at bay (Dr. Jonny Bowden, from The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth).

Another member of the cruciferous family and contain many of the same compounds that strengthen the immune system and fight cancer.

Photo by FOODISM360 on Unsplash

More phytochemicals here but also incredibly high in calcium.

This green is a powerhouse of nutrition. It isn’t just rich in phytochemicals, but it’s also loaded with calcium, iron, and vitamins A, C, and K. It can be a bit tough but the secret is to actually massage it with oil or lemon juice. Seriously. Add it to a big bowl after you wash and destem it (or use baby kale and avoid the need to destem), drizzle a bit of extra virgin olive oil over top or add the juice of a freshly squeezed lemon, and use your clean hands to massage the oil or juice into the kale. This will soften it up and make it easier to eat. Toss in some dried cranberries and pine nuts or roasted chickpeas and toasted pita chips and enjoy.

Photo by Deryn Macey on Unsplash

Because mushrooms are fungus, they are able to absorb and eliminate toxins. They are high in antioxidants and act as a metabolic energy enhancer (Dr. Jonny Bowden, from The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth). That’s a bonus!

Photo by Christine Siracusa on Unsplash

This veggie (technically, it’s a berry) is also loaded with antioxidants. Tomatoes have the best flavor if purchased “vine-ripened” or, even better, from your local farmer’s market when they’re in season. It’s pretty easy to grow them at home too and many varieties grow well in a pot.

If you’d like more information, below are links to the resources used in researching this list. As always, I recommend you do your own research and be sure to use reliable sources.


Using the Produce Aisle to Boost Immune Function:

Mushrooms and Immunity:

The Broccoli Receptor: Our First Line of Defense:

Boosting Immunity Through Diet:

The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth, 
by Jonny Bowden, Ph.D., C.N.S. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to

Why Go Vegan?

Avo Toast

What is Veganism?

Let’s start from the beginning: exactly what is veganism? Given the increased popularity of a vegan diet, I’m sure you’ve heard about it more than once and may even have a friend, family member, or partner who is vegan or is considering a whole-food, plant-based diet.

Just for fun, here’s a list of celebrities who are vegan.

10 Vegan Celebrities in 2020

  1. Natalie Portman;
  2. Ellen Pompeo;
  3. Ellen Page;
  4. Beyonce;
  5. Venus Williams;
  6. Jason Mraz;
  7. Zac Efron;
  8. Bill Clinton;
  9. Liam Hemsworth; and
  10. Benedict Cumberbatch.

Each January, there’s even a movement in the UK –Veganuary– where you are encouraged to try a vegan diet for January and throughout the rest of the year. How cool is that? Here’s a link for more details: Veganuary.

The Vegan Society defines veganism as

“…a way of living which seeks to exclude, as far as is possible and practicable, all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose.”

The term veganism was coined by Donald Watson in November 1944 and Wikipedia defines it as

“…the practice of abstaining from the use of animal products, particularly in diet, and an associated philosophy that rejects the commodity status of animals.”

Okay, so we understand what veganism is, but I think there are still many people out there that don’t understand why people become vegan.

Reasons for a Vegan Diet

There are many reasons to follow a vegan diet and each one is a highly personal decision only you can make.

The Top 10 Most Common Reasons to Choose Vegan in 2020

  1. You’ll help animals;
  2. You’ll help the planet;
  3. You’ll lose weight (as long as you avoid processed vegan foods);
  4. You’ll gain energy;
  5. You’ll be healthier;
  6. Vegan food is delicious;
  7. Meat can be full of antibiotics and contaminants;
  8. You are supporting nonviolence;
  9. You’ll reduce your exposure to mercury found in seafood; and
  10. Your sense of smell and taste will improve.

My Story

I became a vegan because of reason number 5 above, to be healthier. Obviously, everyone wants to be as healthy as they can, but most of the time we just do the best we can and keep on doing our jobs, errands, chores…life happens and pretty soon you realize you aren’t as healthy as you thought. I realized this when I started getting older, and when I watched my husband’s and my own parents get diseases like heart disease, diabetes, and cancer, that might have been prevented by a healthier lifestyle.

My husband asked me to watch the documentary, Forks Over Knives, after another weekend spent over my parent’s house supporting my mom and step-dad through my step-dad’s pancreatic cancer. I watched it and that started my journey researching how I could let food be my medicine. Though my mom and step-dad weren’t interested in changing their lifestyles, by then, my step-dad could barely eat, I knew it was important for me and my husband to change. So I researched, studied, read, and watched all of the documentaries I could get ahold of and we began our vegan journey.

Below are some of the benefits of following a vegan diet but do your own research and do what is right for you on your journey in this life.

Vegan Lifestyle Benefits

It was startling to find out how many benefits there are to following a vegan lifestyle. Not just the top ten reasons listed earlier, but real, scientifically-backed health benefits. For me, that’s where it starts.

Let’s make it easy and give you another top 10 list, but this list doesn’t cover all of the benefits and should not be the only source on which to base your decision to change your diet. After the list, I’ll recommend the absolute BEST site for scientifically-backed information on the benefits of a vegan and whole-food, plant-based diet that you don’t want to miss.

Top 10 Health Benefits

  1. A vegan diet is a nutrient-rich powerhouse;
  2. You can reduce and reverse diabetes;
  3. You can reduce the risk of kidney disease;
  4. You can reduce your risk of several different cancers;
  5. You can reduce arthritic pain;
  6. You can reduce your risk of heart disease;
  7. You can reduce the risk of obesity and obesity-related diseases;
  8. You can improve your physical fitness levels and speed up recovery times;
  9. You can reduce your bad cholesterol levels; and
  10. You can decrease your blood pressure.

Other Resources

My absolute favorite online resource for scientifically-based research on a vegan and whole-food, plant-based lifestyle is…

Nutrition Facts

Others to get you started:

Forks Over Knives

Plant Strong

The China Study

Is Veganism Healthy

And some great vegan blogs listed in this article:

Top Vegan Blogs

Thank you for taking the time to check out what veganism is and what it has to offer. Stay tuned for more tips and information to help you improve your life, including a series of mini cookbooks I’m writing for vegans and the vegan-curious. Until then, eat your veggies 😉

Ten More Awesome Cookbooks to Check Out!

Open Book

Okay, fellow home cooks. Here are 10 more of the best vegan cookbooks you should be checking out. These are all great.

Oh, and I’ve also included my favorite recipe from each to whet your appetite.

Eat to Live by Joel Fuhrman, M.D.

Favorite recipe
No-Pasta Vegetable Lasagna

The Oh She Glows Cookbook by Angela Liddon

Favorite recipe
Protein Power Goddess Bowl

The Engine 2 Diet by Rip Esselstyn

Favorite recipe
New York Times Veggie Burgers

Aquafaba by Zsu Dever

Favorite recipe
French Toast

 Modern Vegan Baking by Gretchen Price

Favorite recipe
Apple Frangipane Tart

Giant Book of Tofu Cooking by K. Lee Evans & Chris Rankin

Favorite recipe
Tofu-Stuffed Mushrooms

The Non-Dairy Evolution Cookbook by Skye Michael Conroy

Favorite recipe
Cream Cheese

Choosing Raw by Gena Hamshaw

Favorite recipe
Pumpkin Quinoa Risotto with Pomegranate Seeds

Viva Vegan! By Terry Hope Romero

Favorite recipe
Chorizo Seitan Sausage 

The Mediterranean Vegan Kitchen by Donna Klein

Favorite recipe
Bulgur Pilaf with Dried Fruits

Thank you for using the affiliate links above and supporting my small business. is a participant of the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to You will not be charged in any way nor will your products be marked up in any way. Your use of these links is appreciated.

Top 10 Tried and True Favorite Kitchen Tools

In addition to the top 10 kitchen tools I recommended in my first cookbook, Best Holiday Dishes for the Vegans in Your Life, below is a list of 10 more of my tried-and-true favorites that have assisted me in cooking and baking over the years.

They are great staples in my kitchen. You do not have to buy any of them. These are tools I have tried and fallen in love with and I wanted to share the knowledge with you as they can make things a bit easier for you too. I hope you find them helpful.

Be sure to also do your own research. Everyone here has different needs, expectations, and budgets. I’m not endorsing any product, just sharing what has worked for me over the years I’ve been cooking and baking.

1.    Wooden Spoons and Spatulas
I love my wooden spoons and spatulas. They are kind to my cookware and fun to use. The additional benefits are that they are slow to heat and don’t react to acidic foods.

If you do use them, wash them by hand right away, if possible. You never want to let them soak in soapy water. Occasionally, you will also want to oil each of them to keep them in good shape. I recommend using a good-quality, organic coconut oil. Just dab a bit on, rub it in, and let it soak in. If you get a bit heavy-handed, just wipe off any extra with a paper towel and use it on the next one.

2.    Nut Butter Mixer
Since I began purchasing all-natural, unsweetened nut butters, I found it a bit of a hassle to mix the jar well. Wouldn’t you know it, there is a gadget for

3.   Rubber Jar Opener
Sometimes, a jar just won’t open for you and you need a bit of help. I always use a small, square rubber mat designed for opening jars and it works every time. It’s cheap and easy to store. If you have this issue, check it out.

4.   Mandoline Slicer
If you find yourself chopping up a lot of vegetables, a mandolin can come in handy. It makes short work of slicing and julienning vegetables. I use it
when I have a lot to cut and want to save some time. Be careful though, the
blade can slice your fingers.

I recommend wearing a metal protective glove when using one. Some include the glove.

5.   Steamer Insert
If your pan set doesn’t come with a steamer insert, you can buy a stainless steel one on Amazon or at a kitchen store. Some department stores carry them too. They are inexpensive and work great to steam vegetables.

My favorite food to steam: carrots. So sweet and delicious.

6.   Rice Cooker
If you make a lot of rice or any grain (you can use a rice cooker for more than rice!), I recommend you buy one of these small appliances. They save a lot of time and you can just add your ingredients and walk away. When you come back, the rice (or grain) is ready to go. Easy-peasy.

7.   Scale
I cook and bake a lot, as you can imagine, and once I purchased a food scale, I was able to get more precise in my baking and open my kitchen up to European recipes that use weight instead of measuring cups. I love using a scale. If you cook and bake a lot, add this to your kitchen. It’s great.

8.    Water Purifier
I haven’t done extensive research on water purifier systems, but I do use a home water filter pitcher to take the bleach out of my city water. I love it.
Try one out. You’ll taste the difference.

9.    Fine Mesh Strainers
I love my set of fine mesh strainers. You can use them for more than
straining small ingredients. Use them in place of a flour sifter. It’s a game

10. Potato Masher
I use my hand masher for more than just potatoes. It’s great for mashing
beans and other ingredients, and it’s a lot easier to use than a fork.

Thank you for using the affiliate links above and supporting my small business. is a participant of the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to You will not be charged in any way nor will your products be marked up in any way. Your use of these links is appreciated. 

A New Cookbook in the Trying Out Vegan Series

Final edits are being made to the next cookbook in the Trying Out Vegan series, available July 14th exclusively on Amazon.

Be on the lookout for a cover reveal soon.

What’s this one about?

Simple Staples Cookbook is for home cooks who want to get their kitchens ready for more plant-based meals, more meatless Mondays.

This cookbook is full of recipes for delicious and nutrient-rich kitchen staples. Recipes include:

  • vegan butter,
  • avocado ranch dressing,
  • whole-grain artisan bread that requires absolutely no kneading.

What else?

  • There’s a game-changing nut milk hack that is going to save you time and money.
  • A versatile pizza dough recipe that’s going to be a family favorite.
  • Plus, whenever possible, we’ve included gluten-free and paleo options.

You’re going to love this cookbook!

But, if you can’t wait, check out the first in the Trying Out Vegan series linked below and get ready for Independence Day! is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to

TITLE REVEAL in the Trying Out Vegan Series

We have a title!

We’ll be releasing the next cookbook in the Trying Out Vegan series on July 14. Our lovely testers and readers have helped us decide and the winner is…

Simple Staples: Make Your Own Favorite Whole Food Pantry Staples

We’re all very excited to share this new cookbook with everyone. This is the second vegan cookbook in a series of seven that focuses on pantry staples that will make your kitchen ready for most dietary preferences and enable you to entertain your friends and family.

Pantry Items

If you are a home cook, vegan-curious, or have friends and family members to cook for who have dietary preferences including vegan, plant based, gluten free, and paleo, this will be a great resource to have at your fingertips.

What does it have to offer? Here are just a few benefits:

  1. This cookbook will help you get your pantry ready for anyone with amazing whole food staple recipes.
  2. All of the recipes are meat-free and have options for gluten-free, paleo, and plant-based preferences.
  3. These recipes are easy, approachable, and delicious.
  4. Adding these recipes to your pantry will give you healthier staple options and support a healthy immune system by incorporating whole food, plant based ingredients.

The cookbook will be available on July 14 for download. Until then, look for picture previews of all of the wonderful recipes on social media and preview posts at this blog each Sunday.

Stay safe, healthy, and be kind to one another!

And if you can’t wait for the July 14 Go Live, check out the first cookbook in the Trying Out Vegan series, Best Holiday Dishes for the Vegans in Your Life. You can download the Kindle version or order a paperback version on Amazon now. The recipes are varied and approachable. You don’t have to wait for a holiday to try them out. There’s a great walnut burger recipe that will be perfect to serve at your next barbecue. Here’s a link below to make it easy. Enjoy! is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to

Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with these Decadent Irish Whiskey Truffles

Irish Whiskey Truffles

In honor of St. Patrick’s Day and for many of us that choose to celebrate at home, here’s a rich and delicious treat from my new cookbook, Best Holiday Dishes for the Vegans in Your Life, coming out this Spring:
Irish Whiskey Truffles.

These deeply satisfying chocolate truffles pack a flavorful punch with Irish Whiskey. Oh yeah, they’re vegan, gluten-free, and paleo friendly too. Bonus!

Even if you’re not vegan, trying out vegan recipes can provide a healthier alternatives to recipes that use dairy-rich ingredients. Both the cocoa and coconut cream in this recipe provide solid nutritional value and if you dust them with nuts, you’ll get a triple punch of nutrients while still enjoying a decadent treat.

This recipe is great because it’s adaptable. Don’t like whiskey, use a different liquor—raspberry or orange liquor are nice. Don’t like alcohol, leave it out and flavor it with pure vanilla, almond, or orange extract instead. Be sure to read the note at the bottom of the recipe to get the details.

Dust the truffles in cocoa powder to make them easier to handle. You can also dust them in coconut flakes, chopped nuts, or powdered sugar (make sure the powdered sugar is vegan).

Irish Whiskey Truffles

These delicious vegan truffles can be made with Irish Whiskey or another liquor that pairs well with chocolate (raspberry or orange would do nicely).
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Course: Dessert
Keyword: Dessert, Easy, Fast, Freezer-Friendly, Gluten-Free, Paleo, Vegan
Servings: 24


  • 1 cup Full-Fat Coconut Cream in the can
  • 3 tbsps Pure Maple Syrup Light or Dark
  • 1 ounce Irish Whiskey or your favorite liquor
  • 1 cup Vegan Dark Chocolate you can use chocolate chips or a bar
  • 1/4 cup Coconut Oil softened
  • 1/4 cup Cocoa Powder for dusting (or use finely chopped nuts or coconut flakes)


  • Place the coconut cream, maple syrup, and whiskey in a pot and bring to a boil.
  • Add the chocolate and coconut oil to a large bowl. Break up the chocolate into small chunks if using a bar
  • Remove the coconut cream mixture from heat and add it to the chocolate bowl, stirring continuously until smooth and very well blended. Refrigerate until cooled and thickened,about two hours (or overnight).
  • Using a spoon or cookie scoop (I use the scoop), form small balls of the mixture and roll in cocoa powder to finish. Be sure to tap off any excess cocoa powder to avoid getting it too thick. You’ll need to move fast, as these melt quickly. If you run into any issues, just put them back in the fridge until they’re cool again and then finish.
  • Keep refrigerated until ready to serve and store in the fridge. Best eaten within 3–5 days. These also freeze very well. Use within 3 months of freezing.


If you do not like alcohol, just delete it. In place of the alcohol, use 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract. Instead of vanilla, can also use 1/2 teaspoon of pure almond extract, 1/2 teaspoon of pure raspberry extract, or 1/2 teaspoon pure orange extract.

A Fast & Easy Breakfast

There are so many people who feel like they don’t have time for breakfast. I’m hoping this recipe will change your mind. In less than five minutes, you can create a healthy, delicious, and whole-food, plant-based breakfast wrap that can be modified based on the foods you have on hand, the season, and your preferences.

Wrap Ingredients

PB, Banana and Berry Wrap

A quick, easy and nutrititious breakfast wrap for on-the-go
Prep Time5 mins
Total Time5 mins
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Breakfast, Easy, Fast, Wrap
Servings: 1


  • 1 Wrap Sprouted or Whole Grain is best
  • 1 tbsp Peanut Butter Natural is best or use your favorite nut butter
  • 1 tsp Chia Seeds Or use your favorite seeds
  • 1 medium Banana Organic, if possible
  • 1/4 cup Berries Your favorite fresh or frozen (thaw first)


  • On your wrap, spread the peanut butter (or your favorite nut butter) and sprinkle with seeds.
  • Add the peeled banana. I leave mine uncut but you can cut yours if you prefer. Sprinkle with the thawed and drained berries and roll it up.
  • If you want it warm, just pop it in the microwave for 30 seconds to warm it up. Wrap it in a paper towel and take it with you on the go. Don't be afraid to play with the ingredients until you get it just right for you. Enjoy!

A 5-Star Read Just In Time for the Holidays!

Behind the Painting

A Supernatural Suspense

On sale now on Amazon

30 years ago, a young girl took her own life, leaving behind only her paintings to remember her. When Lorelei purchases one of these paintings, she doesn’t expect it to stir up unfinished business from the past that will put her life in jeopardy.

From day one, disturbing things start to happen and they’re only getting worse. Working alongside her best friend, Lorelei is thrown into a world of the supernatural. When paranormal investigators dig up even more chaos, she seeks out the only person who may be able to help; a shamanic practitioner. She will reveal a truth so unexpected, it will change Lorelei forever.

Author, Amanda Leeber, delivers a fast-paced, haunting tale that may just have you considering new possibilities.