The First Mess Cookbook: Vibrant Plant-Based Recipes to Eat Well Through the Seasons

The blogger behind the Saveur award-winning blog The First Mess shares her eagerly anticipated debut cookbook, featuring more than 125 beautifully prepared seasonal whole-food recipes.

Dallas Morning News says, “…This is the first cook from Ontario, Canada-based, award-winning blogger Laura Wright (of, whose mindful approach comes through in her clear recipe writing. It’s thorough enough to hold the hands of beginners, but not too much to wade through if you’re not. Chapters are broken into loosely defined categories of: Mornings and Breakfasts (with many shots of steaming mugs of coffee and tea throughout), Soups & Stews, Salads and Dressings, Hearty Mains, Energizing Drinks and Small Bites, etc…”

A review from the author of my favorite vegan cookbook writes, “Laura Wright’s passion for cooking shines through every evocative word and gorgeous photograph on her blog—and now, in this lovely cookbook, too. I’ve always loved Laura’s inspiring, seasonal, and wholesome take on plant-based eating. And with unique dishes like Savory Ginger Green Onion Crepes, Butternut and Pesto Cream Lasagna, and Earl Grey Tiramisu, I know The First Mess Cookbook will have a place on my shelf for many years to come.”—Angela Liddon, New York Times bestselling author of The Oh She Glows Cookbook and Oh She Glows Every Day

Beth on Amazon writes, My first judgment of a cookbook comes from the # of dog-eared pages I have after a first pass (Yes, I’m one of those people that “reads” a cookbook cover to cover). After a first pass of The First Mess, it doubled in thickness from all the recipes I marked. We’ve had the book for a couple weeks now, and here’s my experience:

1. Gorgeous full page photos! I love seeing what the finished product should look like, as well as many close up photos
2. Recipes are all on one page, no annoying flipping while cooking.
3. Fairly simple, easy to follow recipes with helpful tips, i.e. “should appear jammy in texture.”
4. Standard recipes that can be modified to your local veggies, such as Small Batch Roasted Soup.
5. There is a pretty elaborate desserts section!
6. “Stocking Your Pantry for Success” section explains the different fats, acids, sweeteners and proteins she keeps on hand. I knew a lot of salad dressing recipes call for grapeseed or sunflower oil, but I didn’t know this was because it stays liquid in the fridge. Great tip!
7. High-quality printing. No annoying dust jacket and the paper is a thick with a matte finish. This book is a tactile pleasure to flip through.

1. Unless you are already a dedicated gluten-free vegan, you might not have all these ingredients on hand, and you’ll need them quite often: chia seeds, flax seed, hulled hemp seed, dates, multitudes of different flours (whole spelt, millet, oat), arrowroot, buckwheat groats and cups and cups of almond milk.
2. The organization is a bit weird. For example, she has some drinks in the morning section, but there is an “Energizing Drinks” section (which is combined with “Small Bites”?). There are “Salads and Dressings,” Hearty Meals” and “Vegetables and Grains” sections, but the whole book is veggies, so these don’t feel all that different. My guess is that when you write a vegan book, the organization is hard because everything is a veggie recipe. My guess is I will be using the table of contents more often for this book than most others.

Learn more about: The First Mess

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