Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Vegan Starter Kit: Everything You Need to Know About Plant-Based Eating” as Want to Read:
The Vegan Starter Kit: Everything You Need to Know About Plant-Based Eating
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Vegan Starter Kit: Everything You Need to Know About Plant-Based Eating

3.88  ·  Rating details ·  403 ratings  ·  68 reviews
Leading medical authority Neal Barnard, MD, FACC, shows you how to put the power of a vegan diet to work with an easy, step-by-step approach.

Many are looking to adopt a more healthful diet but may have questions, like: How do I plan a vegan meal? Is protein an issue? How do I make it work if I don't cook? Which are the best choices at restaurants?

In The Vegan Starter Ki
Paperback, 176 pages
Published December 24th 2018 by Grand Central Publishing
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Vegan Starter Kit, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Vegan Starter Kit

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.88  · 
Rating details
 ·  403 ratings  ·  68 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of The Vegan Starter Kit: Everything You Need to Know About Plant-Based Eating
Chelsea Humphrey
Even though I almost exclusively review fiction on this site, I've been wanting to branch out and find some non-fiction titles that tickle my fancy. As a vegetarian who consumes a limited amount of dairy (mostly traces amounts when I splurge on processed foods), I've toed the line of veganism for years, yet somehow never fully committed. This book was perfect for the curious mind who wants to learn a bit more about a plant based diet from a health perspective without the preachy pressure that so ...more
Marisa Miller-McDowell
Dec 31, 2018 rated it did not like it
I want to like this book. I want this to be a resource for people considering a plant-based diet. But the level of propaganda from start to finish is embarrassing.

It is not necessary to claim that every human disease can be eradicated by a vegan diet in order to advocate for a vegan diet.

You lost me before this but by defining diabetes incorrectly as a disease that occurs because fat is in our cells is not just some bullshit, it leans so deep into fat shaming, it’s literally cellular. Diabetes
Jan 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
So to preface, I think Dr. Barnard is awesome. I've read several of his books and I've enjoyed following his work with PCRM and hearing him in documentaries and podcasts. I think he's a fantastic advocate for the WFPB lifestyle and does a great job of delivering information in an approachable way (with a touch of his trademark snark, which always makes me laugh!). I highly encourage anyone who is interested in a vegan diet to read this book, with one note of caution regarding our pets' diets tha ...more
Sharyn L.
Good basic and non-judgmental info about going plant-based. Not overwhelming, great for people new to WFPB eating.
Dec 23, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: cookbooks
Info seems a little too “rah rah veganism is the cure for whatever ails you” but has some recipes I’d like to make especially soups and salads.
I've been either primarily plant based or entirely vegan for the better part of 10 years. I can say that there are some gems in this book but there are also things that are over simplified...and one thing that's flat out wrong...or maybe I am, but it's my understanding that cats are obligate carnivores and can NOT get by on a plant based diet.
This book is very short and perhaps would be a good introduction for people who are interested in plant based eating for health reasons, but a better equa
May 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nutrition, cooking
Unquestionably, this is a very to the point and simple guide to getting started with a whole foods plant-based diet. It leaves off anything extraneous and does not try to be too fancy. Too many books in this area try to overdo it with fancy cooking, which can be fun if that's what you enjoy but the overwhelming majority of people have a need to keep it simple. This book does that.

The single biggest detraction from the value of this book is how the author deliberately co-opts the term whole foods
Mar 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: food
"A vegan diet will improve your health, but it won't change your personality."

"The health advantages to going vegan include: heart disease reversing, improvement of high blood pressure, reversal of diabetes, falling cancer risks and Alzheimer's disease is less likely to strike."

"Veganism is also a vote for the environment as the cattle industry continues to add methane into the atmosphere."

"All foods from plant sources derive less than 10 percent of their calories from fat."

"Raising cholesterol
Kamillia G
I think this book would be better named “starter kit to whole foods plant based diet (with low oil)” rather than using the term vegan because vegan refers to an ethical lifestyle. But if you eat animal products right now and are looking to eat a whole foods plant based diet with low oil, this is a good book. However I would recommend being more lenient on vegan junk foods and oil at the beginning, in order to ensure longevity of the new diet.

Side note: I believe the author should have put in mo
Dec 20, 2019 rated it did not like it
OKAY. I thought this was a pretty good book for discovering veganism and laying out good goals for humans— who, from my understanding and studying, are meant to be largely (if not entirely) plant-based— and I was right... at first.

Then, he added “Can Cats and Dogs Be Vegan?” The answer is: No. Those animals have shorter digestive tracts, teeth meant for tearing through meat (as compared to our teeth, meant to tear through tough plant fibers), and CANNOT SURVIVE WELL ON A PLANT-BASED OR VEGAN DI
Kate Lawrence
Mar 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: food-issues
This very accessible guide will be helpful to people new to the vegan lifestyle who want an overview and how-to. It covers health issues, how to cook at home and eat out, how to deal with annoying comments from friends and family, and much more.
My only complaint: I think it makes the transition to becoming completely vegan sound easier than it is (I say this as someone vegan for over 30 years who has encouraged dozens of people in this process), particularly for people who do not live in major
Dec 28, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction, vegan, health
I'm no "starter," but I was interested in what Dr. Barnard had to say. This is a quick read suitable for anyone looking to incorporate a more plant-forward diet. While Dr. Barnard mentions the benefits of a vegan diet on animal welfare and the planet, he focuses on the basics of how eating a plant-based diet is good for health. He dispells several myths, like the omnipresent lack of protein myth. (Seriously, where do you think your hamburger gets protein? It eats grass.) And he touches on the be ...more
Jan 20, 2019 rated it it was ok
I was eager to review this book as I feel strongly we could all benefit from eating more plant-based foods in our diet, even if one chooses not to be vegan or vegetarian, and I am always excited to look over recipes. However, I felt very disappointed in this book. It seemed hastily thrown together and I imagine would not be very helpful for someone new to a vegan diet. I knew that I would not support Dr. Barnards health claims regarding a vegan diet (I am familiar with PCRM and am aware that the ...more
Mar 21, 2020 rated it it was ok
I'm a huge advocate for a vegan diet, and this book is definitely not something I'd recommend. Too off-putting for the newcomer. Too general for the initiated. It really doesn't have an audience. It's not as well cited as I'd hoped, and doesn't contain anything I didn't already know. (There's also some questionable info, like nonstick pans and the breastfeeding recommendation.) I'm a fan of the content, but I don't feel this was well executed. Even most of the included recipes were disappointing ...more
Sep 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019
This book is a good, short intro to eating plant based nutrition.

Dr Barnard of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Nutrition has crafted a primer with short chapters that cover all the topics, and includes easy to make recipes for people to try who may have little to no cooking skills or knowledge of cooking with plants.

I only wish the title used the words “Plant Based Nutrition [or Cooking]) since the word vegan is just weird and carries all kinds of negative associations. To be fair, th
Leslie M.
Nov 08, 2018 rated it liked it
3.5 stars

I have a number of vegan friends, so I was interested in checking out this book. This book is beneficial for someone wanting to know more about a plant-based diet. It’s great for people just starting out with a vegan diet. Barnard is a doctor, and he’s able to explain things in a way that’s easy to understand, as well as provide various ways to adapt things. Simple recipes are included. The author also mentions how beneficial this lifestyle/diet could be to people with various health is
Tesha Ham
Dec 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book is fantastic for anyone interested in a Vegan diet, whether it is for health or ethical reasons, this is a great place to start. This title offers tips on how to plan meals, recipes, things your diet should contain, myths about eating vegan, etc. It is easy to follow, thorough in a non-intimidating way, and truly feels like a good step into the world of vegan diets. I would highly recommend this book to those just starting out, it is by far one of the most helpful books I have ever com ...more
Feb 13, 2019 rated it did not like it
While I rarely give a 1 star, this book deserves it. There were a lot of inconsistencies and false truths with all the research I've done. The biggest one was being able to feed your cat or dog a vegan diet. No you can not!!! It is animal abuse especially for cats. They are obligate carnivores, that means they only eat meat, they do not digest fruits or vegetables. Ugh!!! If you want an animal that only eats a vegan diet, adopt a rabbit or other veggie eating species appropriate animal.

No, I wo
Dan Carpenter
Dec 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
I agree with some of the other reviews that this book tends to overly focus on how being vegan will cure all diseases and make everyone skinny. Even if many points were overstated, I do agree that eating plants instead of animals actually is healthier and will reduce weight. I also think that there should have been more emphasis on being vegan because of environmental concerns and animal rights.

Despite anything wrong with this book, it has helped me decide to focus more heavily on eating better
Apr 26, 2021 rated it liked it
An OK book about Veganism

The book doesn't claim to be something that it's not. If you don't know anything much about veganism, this is a good book to read to introduce yourself to the concepts and how the diet may work.

That being said, I don't think the book provides any information that you wouldn't be able to find from your own research. But if you're unsure where to look for reliable information online, this is a good book, with resources and references.

So if you want to know about Veganis
Jan 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed reading this book. My intent is to begin a vegan lifestyle once I complete the detox that I am currently doing, and this book makes it sound very simple, easy and comfortable. I feel empowered and ready to begin a plant-based lifestyle after reading this book. Although I borrowed it from the library, because of all the great information and the delicious-sounding recipes, I’ll be purchasing this book to add to my ever-growing vegan resource library.
Quashaea Rogers
Dec 25, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very quick and to the point, but...

I liked the book as it gave me lots of information, but at some points, it kind of came off as “preachy” or “this is the only approach to Veganism that works.” But overall good content, & I liked that it was a straight to the point & a quick read.
Eli Claire
May 08, 2019 rated it it was ok
A simple, quick introduction to the vegan diet. I skipped the sections on weight loss, diabetes, and pregnancy/feeding your kids, as they weren’t relevant to me. I didn’t really learn anything new, but it would be a good book for someone very new to researching the vegan diet. And I definitely DON’T agree with making your pets be vegan, which is touched on very briefly, but that’s another issue.
Elsa Rizo
Dec 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I was vegan for over a year a few years ago. For personal reasons I stopped being vegan. I do want to start again and be vegan for life, but it has been hard to stay away from cheese. Cheese is my downfall lol. Anyway, this book was great! I love how he breaks everything down for you and gives you tons of recipes. I’m looking forward to starting my vegan journey again.
Jan 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Very good read on how to begin a vegan diet. Dr. Barnard defines what a vegan diet is and how to achieve it. Easy read but very informative. Plus some recipes in the back of the book. I really like how he talks about how to achieve this diet if you don’t like to cook.
Tracy Zollinger
Feb 09, 2019 rated it liked it
As a vegetarian considering making the transition to a vegan diet, I wanted this book to be more helpful. I think it may be more so for those who are making a bigger transition. This was reassuring, but not enough here about easy vegan food that isn’t prepackaged.
Feb 11, 2019 rated it liked it
There were not very many sources to back up the author's claims in this book. Although other books I've read about plant-based eating have sources that back up this author's claims I feel as though he should have provided more background as well. ...more
Aug 21, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-in-2019
I had high hopes for this book, but I was disappointed. I expected a lot more from a medical doctor. It read more like a lay person’s blog than a well researched guide to adopting a vegan diet. And the claim that a vegan diet is ever appropriate for a cat is completely irresponsible.
Aug 22, 2019 rated it liked it
3 ⭐️s mostly because I’ve already found all this info online... nothing new or surprising here. Also super boring, reads like a textbook. The beginning I did enjoy reading how more plants have cured so many diseases, and all the stats.
Christy St Jean
Dec 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Incredible insight into why the Vegan diet is so healthy. It explains why it works, dispels myths and makes it easy to get enthusiastic about becoming vegan. I highly recommend this book if you are at all curious about going vegan.
« previous 1 3 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Undo It!: How Simple Lifestyle Changes Can Reverse Most Chronic Diseases
  • Forks Over Knives: The Plant-Based Way to Health
  • Peace and Good Order: The Case for Indigenous Justice in Canada
  • How Not to Diet: The Groundbreaking Science of Healthy, Permanent Weight Loss
  • Walking with Peety: The Dog Who Saved My Life
  • How Not to Die: Discover the Foods Scientifically Proven to Prevent and Reverse Disease
  • Proteinaholic: How Our Obsession with Meat Is Killing Us and What We Can Do About It
  • The Greenprint: Plant-Based Diet, Best Body, Better World
  • Forks Over Knives—The Cookbook: Over 300 Simple and Delicious Plant-Based Recipes to Help You Lose Weight, Be Healthier, and Feel Better Every Day
  • How to Be Vegan: Tips, Tricks, and Strategies for Cruelty-Free Eating, Living, Dating, Travel, Decorating, and More
  • The Joyful Vegan: How to Stay Vegan in a World That Wants You to Eat Meat, Dairy, and Eggs
  • 51 Plant-Based High-Protein Recipes: For Athletic Performance and Muscle Growth
  • Plant-Based on a Budget: Delicious Vegan Recipes for Under $30 a Week, for Less Than 30 Minutes a Meal
  • Empedokles’in Dostları
  • No Unhallowed Hand: 1846-1893 (Saints, #2)
  • Streets of Fire: Bruce Springsteen in Photographs and Lyrics 1977-1979
  • How to Rescue a Family (Furever Yours)
See similar books…

Goodreads is hiring!

If you like books and love to build cool products, we may be looking for you.
Learn more »
See top shelves…
Neal D. Barnard, M.D., is a nutrition researcher, author, and health advocate. As an adjunct associate professor of medicine at the George Washington University School of Medicine, Dr. Barnard conducts studies on the role of nutrition in diabetes, obesity, and lipid management, among other health issues. His most recent clinical trial, funded by the National Institutes of Health, established the v ...more

Related Articles

It's June, which means it's time to celebrate Pride month in honor of the LGBTQ+ community! This year, we wanted to highlight the...
258 likes · 48 comments
“A vegan diet simply means there are no animal products on the menu—no meat, dairy, or eggs. “Vegetarian” means meatless, so a vegetarian meal might be vegan or might not, depending on whether it includes cheese or other dairy products. Some people use the term “plant-based,” which nowadays is synonymous with “vegan.” Some say “whole-foods plant-based,” meaning they not only are skipping animal products but are generally preferring whole grains and other intact foods over processed foods, such as sugar, flour, and the like.” 0 likes
“When you follow a vegan diet, there is much less need for surgeons to clean out your arteries or intestinal tract!” 0 likes
More quotes…