It seems like every season I feel pulled to rediscover cookbooks we've had for years and pick up a couple new ones to add to the collection. This fall was no different, with the exception that we are making an effort to eat vegan more often as a roundabout result of me following too many instagram animal sanctuaries. Dang, they tear at your heartstrings! I've been a vegetarian for almost two decades (oh my! that makes me feel old!) and am feeling the tug to make a change to veganism. I haven't told my family this, but I suppose now the cat is out of the bag.

In our house, dinner is a time that we try to come together and spend a minute in the same earthly plane. Sometimes this means that we sit around the table and talk about our day, other times we eat dinner in front of the TV, and then there are the occasions we all grab something to eat as we dash off to our various activities. Any way you slice it, I think a home cooked meal brings a little bit of togetherness in any of those scenarios.

There's something about thumbing through a stack of books to figure out what we are eating this month. If you haven't checked out our monthly meal planning post, you should! It may seem like the craziest idea, but it's worked for our family for over a year. This month, we used some new and old cookbook favorites to make our menu.

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The best thing about the recipes in these books is that they are food both adults and kids love, there are fancier meals for moms and dads (and the adventurous teenager), and almost every book has some version of mac & cheese for the days you want comfort food. We're working on making them all!

Sweet Potato Soul

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Craving something fried? This book has you covered... Probably in a delicious gravy. This book has recipes that are irresistible when you're looking for comfort food. it includes breakfasts, desserts and everything in between. This month we are trying the Low Country Grits, and I'm hoping they turn out as great as the grits I had in New Orleans last year. So. Good!

Power Plates

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I love, love, love eating a meal out of a bowl. This book has so many different options for salads, buddha bowl type meals, and soups that it keeps my desire to never use a plate satisfied. These meals are filled with so much flavor and different components to add interest to the dish that they've satisfied everyone in our house. This month we are trying the Roasted Cauliflower Salad and Sweet Potato Falafel Bowls, but our favorite recipe so far was the Greek Bowls. It was the first time that I'd used cashews for a sauce and the fam was shocked to know that the tzatziki was dairy free.

Vegan Comfort Classics

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We purchased this book on the recommendation of a cousin who made and posted several of the recipes and her young children's reactions to them (all positive, by the way!). To date this book has a reserved place in our repertoire for meal selection, simply due to the fact that the sandwich recipes are DELICIOUS! The buffalo cauliflower sandwich that's featured on the cover was so popular the hubs asks for it on the regular. For picky eaters, this book makes you forget you're eating vegan - it's just delicious, great food. Just last week we made the Bangers & Mash, with a couple of extra teenagers at the house, and everyone gave it rave reviews. We're trying out a couple more recipes this month, including the Bacon Mac & Cheese Skillet and Real Wonton Soup (I'm REALLY excited about this guy!).

The Vegan Slow Cooker

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If you've been around this blog for more than a minute, it is no secret that I love my slow cooker. Crockpot, slow cooker, whatever you want to call it, it makes food while I'm ignoring it doing something else. Growing up the slow cooker was a meat generating machine, so I was thrilled to find some interesting vegan recipes to make. Besides supporting my lazy habits, what I love about this book is that it makes vegan food accessible. So many recipes are made with straightforward ingredients, and those that are a bit unique still stay approachable (enter make your own seitan here-intimidating if you haven't done it before!). I particularly love the soups in this cookbook, we've already made the White Bean & Kale Stew this month.

I hope that you're inspired to check out a couple of these cookbooks, and that you find some new recipes that become favorites in your household. Just a note that this post was not sponsored, and we are sharing some of our favorite things with you because we thing you'll enjoy them.

Happy meal making!