Friday, November 13, 2015

Thug Kitchen (Book Review)

Vegan Cookbook Review - Thug Kitchen: The Official Cookbook #vegan

sitting on the shelf at a book store, I confess I was a bit turned off by the title. Not that I'm against swear words - where I come from they are used quite liberally actually. Anyway, I had the same kind of turned-off feeling I had the first time I heard about Skinny Bitch - like they were just deliberately trying to be shocking in order to sell books. (BTW, Skinny Bitch: Ultimate Everyday Cookbook is a great vegan cookbook.)

All doubts aside, I picked up that copy of Thug Kitchen and perused the recipes. They are vegan recipes, but they aren't really presented that way. It's suggested in the intro that the book is about eating healthy - giving up drive-thru dinners and adding more veggies to our meals. It's a book for ordinary folks. "We are your next-door neighbors and somewhere along the way, we learned to eat right," say the authors. "And you can too."

Thug Kitchen is a collection of plant-based meals, snacks and sides "for beginning cooks all the way to people who know their way around a farmers' market." And you know what? All the swearing and "keeping it real" has grown on me. It was this quote from Julia Child at the beginning of the book that really won me over. "The only real stumbling block is fear of failure. In cooking you've got to have a what-the-hell attitude." That is some true sh*t right there. (Okay, enough of that.) It got me thinking - there are plenty of things I'm afraid to do in my life, but cooking ain't one of them. After all, what have you got to lose? You could burn your dinner or make a bad batch of cookies, but it's pretty darn easy to just forget about it and move on. Have fun with it and don't take it too seriously.

I am a total muffin addict, so the first recipe I made from Thug Kitchen was these Peanut Butter and Banana Nut Muffins, above. Because, come on, banana and peanut butter! Yum. I have made these a few times since. They are super easy to make, require few ingredients and come out delicious every time.

Next up I made the Vegetable-Noodle Soup with Ginger Miso Broth. Another simple recipe, great for a weeknight meal. As the authors note in the intro, this soup makes ramen noodles a thing of the past. "Take the few extra minutes to make this and put that ramen back in your zombie apocalypse kit where it f*cking belongs." I love the broccoli in the soup and the zing of fresh ginger.

I also made the Sourdough French Toast, minus the sourdough because I didn't have any. It worked out fine with regular bread. Again, very few ingredients and nothing complicated. The recipe calls for ground chia or flaxseed for thickening. It also calls for nutritional yeast, which seemed a bit risky to me. I wasn't sure how it would pair with my favourite sweet topping - maple syrup. But I ended up enjoying it, and of course the nutritional yeast provides some health benefits.

Recipes I'd like to try - Biscuits and Gravy (with a lentil gravy), Smoked Almond and Chickpea Salad Sammies, Sweet Corn and Green Chile Baked Flautas, Creamy Ravioli with House Marinara and Crispy Millet and Peanut Butter Buckeyes. Everything looks tasty and quite manageable for us ordinary folks.

Looking at the pictures, I can't help but think that this type of fare is great for sharing with friends. Probably why the authors have come out with a new cookbook, Thug Kitchen Party Grub: For Social Motherf*ckers. Two cookbooks isn't bad considering the creators only started their blog back in 2012. Now if only I could get Gwyneth Paltrow to endorse me... maybe I need to swear more?

Do you have this book? Look like something you'd be interested in?

*I received a book for review purposes. All opinions are authentic and my own. This post contains affiliate links.


  1. I bought this cook book as soon as it came out. I'd followed the blog for a while and I thought it was hilarious (I have a fondness for the word fuck). I have made the peanut butter/banana muffins and liked them as well. Then I took the book with me to Minnesota to show my aunt (who is a vegetarian-I am not) and forgot it! I'm still waiting for her to mail it back to me but when I get it back I really want to try the noodle recipe you made and the lentil gravy and biscuit recipe.

    1. I hate it when one of my fave books is left somewhere!!! I can send you those recipes by email if you want. :)

  2. I've seen this cookbook on shelves and have always been intrigued by it. I love your review and now definitely want to buy the book because what you made looks delicious!!

    1. Aw thanks! So glad you liked the review. I hope you enjoy the book! :)