The Vegan 8 claims that it contains “100 simple, delicious recipes made with 8 ingredients or less.” This is not entirely true. The introduction says there are 3 free ingredients: salt, pepper, and water. This is fair, but then if you look at the recipes, there are many which actually either cheat by separating into multiple recipes that combine or try to suggest that things like black pepper corns and ground pepper are the same thing. It may be in the letter or the rule, but borderline in spirit, at least for me. The other cheat that isn’t convincing is putting a lot of the spices and seasoning as “optional” and thus not counted in the 8.
To wit: “20-Minute Alfredo” which looks like a pretty standard and decent recipe. However, all veggies are “optional” and the pasta is a ‘separate’ recipe. If you take the salt and pepper out of the sauce recipe, you have broth, cashews, cider vinegar, nutritional yeast, flour, garlic powder, and Italian seasoning. The sauce recipe follows the rule of >8, but pasta and veggies are both pretty necessary elements of a decent final dish. Similarly, “Mexican Tahini Chickpeas” is tahini, chickpeas, lime juice, maple syrup, onion-garlic-chili-cumin powders, and salt. That’s within the rules. However, this is not a complete meal without things like tortillas, lettuce, tomato, etc. Both the picture and the introductory paragraph suggest that this is intended to be an actual lunch or other meal. Yet the things that would make this recipe more complete are not counted as the main; the other problem here is that such an approach also makes the nutritional information somewhat suspect or not as genuinely informative as it should be if you’re going to include that kind of thing.
On the positive side, recipes like “Orange-Vanilla Waffles” sound pretty good and also comes with suggestions for various substitutions and serving options. Don’t like/want/have oat flour? Ok, spelt works but changes the taste. AP flour also works but might require the addition of more milk. Serving ideas include the idea of tossing one or few in the toaster the next day.