A Taste of Plant-Based


I grew up vegetarian. As a teenager after school friends and I would gather at Jack in the Box, or a bowling alley and I became a fan of hot dogs and hamburgers. A few years ago I was diagnosed with Celiac and less than a year ago was diagnosed with colon cancer. The diagnoses have had me researching and reading anything I can find on healthier eating. I was excited to receive A Taste of Plant-Based.

The Author

After watching a life-changing PETA video as an impressionable teenager, Kris Ernst stopped eating meat but admitted she was not much of a cook.


Years later, when she got married and had two children, (Evan, now 13, and Kenna, now 10), the entire family decided to commit to a vegan lifestyle.

Ernst, of Doylestown, Pennsylvania knew she needed healthy and tasty recipes that everyone, including her supportive husband, Ryan, would enjoy. Ernst was dedicated to making sure these recipes had the necessary nutrients, were quick and simple, and tasted delicious.

The Book

This is a curated collection of 50+ plant-based recipes that work for everyday meals, but you can use them for your Veg Pledge or your Meatless Mondays! 50+ Recipes on 86 high-quality full-color 100 lb. silk text paper with 120 lb. gloss soft touch laminate cover. Wire-O bound for ease of use while cooking. Made in the USA.


As a teen, you saw a PETA video, and you vowed to stop eating meat. What was your parent’s reaction?

My parents thought it was a phase I would quickly grow out of. Decades later, my mom still points out all of the items I am able to eat on the menu when we are out to eat together!

Can you explain exactly what vegan is? What is the difference between vegetarian and vegan?

A person who does not eat any food derived from animals is considered vegan. There are several types of vegetarians: some exclude meat but will eat by-products such as dairy or eggs. I called my cookbook a Taste of Plant-Based because being plant-based is a more flexible approach and is not about being restrictive. Being plant-based is eating more foods like vegetables, fruit, legumes, whole grains, nuts, and seeds. Ideally, you want them to resemble how they are found in nature, but realistically, that is difficult to do! Consider this cookbook a shortcut to plant-based eating.

What inspired you to write this book?

My husband Ryan decided to commit to a vegan lifestyle, and my children said they would give it a try. I would print recipes off the internet, jot down adjustments or substitutions I made to them, note which meals the entire family enjoyed, and throw out the ones they didn’t. I needed a quick and easy reference for mealtimes but couldn’t find one. So, I made my own!

Authoring a book is not for the faint of heart, what were the writing and the publishing process like for you?

I had so much fun! I got to cook with my kids and try lots of different recipes, and then design a beautiful cookbook with Rebecca Trauger who I now consider a close friend!

When your husband and children decided to join you, and commit to a vegan lifestyle how did you determine, and how difficult was it to figure out what nutrients were needed to keep your family healthy?

I left that up to a professional – I hired a nutritionist to teach my family how to read food labels and decipher nutrition facts. She also explained serving sizes and daily nutrient requirements.

The recipes in this book would also be helpful for non-vegan families that participate in meatless Monday, and for those that observe lent. Which recipe would you suggest they start with?

I would suggest the Chik’n & Rice (pg. 58) for those that truly don’t want to give up meat, and for more adventurous eaters like my husband, the Creamy Avocado Carbonara (pg. 62) is quick and really delicious!

What suggestions do you have for moms looking for grab-and-go vegan snacks for their children?

Grapes, sliced apples with peanut butter, veggie sticks with hummus, or there are some fabulous plant-based protein bars like Zing Bars.

What is your favorite local restaurant and what are you ordering?

Anything from Luhv Bistro in Hatboro, Pennsylvania where my order typically includes their Energy soup (made with chickpeas, quinoa, kale, lentils, sweet potatoes, wakame seaweed, and tomatoes) or the Portobello Melt which is sautéed Portobello mushrooms, onions and spinach with vegan American cheese on a ciabatta roll. I’m drooling.

Where can readers find you online, and where can they purchase the book?

Etsy: https://www.etsy.com/shop/atasteofplantbased

Amazon:  A Taste of Plant-Based

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/atasteofplantbasedcookbook/

 Will you write another book?

Possibly – I am collecting new recipes all the time!

And I always ask what is your favorite TV guilty pleasure?

Anything on Bravo – Housewives, Below Deck, Southern Charm…I happened to be in NYC at the same time as BravoCon and spotted Olivia from Southern Charm and fanned out!

What was the last book you read?

Duke and the Lonely Boy was written by Lynn Langan, who is a friend of mine. She’s extremely talented and the book kept me engaged all the way through!





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