Thursday, April 13, 2006

"Where can I go to talk more about veganism?"

As those of you who read the comments may have noticed, I decided to disallow anonymous posters. Some of us (vegan and not vegan) have been having a hard time getting along and being respectful of each other. Most of the nastier comments seem to be coming from anonymous posters, so I apologize to all the friendly, polite posters who will have to take the extra time to register. I hope you do, because I really do welcome friendly thoughts, comments, suggestions, and questions.

I believe in open debate about the larger issues of veganism. I just don't know if my lunch box blog is the place to have these big, worked-up discussions. Someone nicely suggested that I start a forum, but I've realized after reading all these posts that I don't have the time, Solomon-like wisdom, and thick skin that it would take to become a forum moderator.

There are some great discussion boards out there. VeggieBoards is a large group that I've heard good things about. Before I got busy with the Lunch Box, I used to hang out at Vegan Freaks and Post Punk Kitchen. Does anyone else have a favorite forum they would recommend?


Sam said...

Although I am not a vegan, I respect the vegan choice. Just thought I would hop over to let you know that the only bad comments I ever get on my own (definitely not vegan) food blog are from Anonymous commentors too, so I am thinking, now, that maybe I should follow your suit.

Mistrmind said...

Delphi forums are a good spot.
You can create a forum for free with basic membership (which is also free)

I think they offer a flat rate for yearly membership. Give you more controls for your forums and such. I think it's reasonably priced too.

Just a suggestion.

Bryanna Clark Grogan said...

Jennifer, I think you've made a good decision. People just have to google vegan forum to come up with plenty of places for discussion. Personally, I find that many people use the internet as an excuse to vent whatever their particular venom or animosity is, and they feel no compunction to be civil, polite, compassionate, etc.. If one has to to identify oneself, one might tend to use more judgement. Good call!

Silicon Valley Moms Group said...

I also am not vegan but you have inspired me to get healthier about our eating.

I have seen the debates which I think are interesting but you are correct about this not being the place for them.

Keep up the good work!

Anonymous said...

Jennifer: I am a vegatarian. I have really enjoyed and appreciate the thoughtfulness you bring in a Vegan balanced approach. Thank you for giving everyone an oppourtunity and now an approprate outlet for their opinions and concerns.

I have trully enjoyed your creativity in new and different recipes. It gives me a "don't cook very often" person hope that cooking can be pretty easy and tasty.

Vancouver, Washington

Molly said...

I think that the vegan freaks forum is one of the coolest places I have found on the web, The people there are amzaing, devoted, and quite fun.

La Tea Dah said...

There are several vegan forums that I really enjoy. They are:

Thank you for all your faithful posting. I love your blog!

Wendy aka Cheeky said...

I am not a vegan -

I ran across your blog one day and have been lurking ever since. Reading your blog has not only made me make healthier choices for my own family but have also caused me to contemplate being vegan.

My son (7) has been a self proclaimed vegetarian since he was about 4. He has never really liked meat and I don't force it on him (although he does eat a few things every now and then). Reading your blog has helped me with ideas for his meals.

Keep up the good work - and I agree anonymous posters must go!

Ro said...

I enjoy your blog. You put alot of creativity into your meal presention. I especialy love the bagel from the last post I will have to try that sometime.

As for forums I'm not sure but Chow mag might have one it's not Vegan but it's very hip and they do veggie things.

Best Wishes

VeggieLawyer said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
ArlineA said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Ben said...

Personally, I have found nothing but frustration at vegan forums. Every one I've been on (which probably doesn't include the ones people have mentioned above) has been a magnet for staunch anti-vegans. No fun for anyone.

Mindy T. said...

In my long years as a "conscious" cook and eater, I've experimented with many different diet schemes: macrobiotics and Ayurveda among them, neither of which is vegan. I spent several years as a pure vegan and have written vegan cookbooks, but for most of my adult life I have been a lacto-ovo vegetarian who buys local and organically produced milk and eggs.

I've found that what is good for a person and good for the planet are extremely complex questions that can't be answered with a rigid set of rules. And if I had to name the biggest cause for what ails humanity, I would say violent arrogance --including unkind, self-righteous speech.

I'm sorry your wonderful blog has attracted such comments and definitely support you in preventing them. I don't accept anonymous comments at my blog, either, because of advertising spam showing up in my email box. There's a downside to this public forum, but the upside makes it worthwhile.

All the best to you and Happy Easter!

Scott Carlson said...

The Vegan Peace forum has some good information and conversation

Anonymous said...

Like a few other posters here, I stumbled upon your blog by sheer accident. And I am so happy I did! While I am not a veggie or a vegan - I find that I rarely if ever order meat at restaurants (main reason - the mystery of where, excatly, it comes from on the cow, chicken, etc. . ) and choose veggie friendly options instead. . . I do eat poultry & seafood at home on occassion, but am finding that I am eating them less & less. My aunt has been a vegetarian since I was little & my mother is in the process of becoming a vegetarian for health reasons.

Your blog is truly inspiring! It has made me more conscious of the things I prepare for myself & reminds me of the days when my mom used to pack me creative lunches like you do for little shmoo!!! Keep up the great work!!!!

jenny said...

I like the boards

My favorite is Jo Stepaniak's Grassroots Veganism board:

underneath the bunker said...

Thanks for motivating me to finally sign up!

jac said...

I'm not a vegan either, but I'm a sucker for gorgeous lunch boxes!

veganloveburger said...

I love your blog, and don't mind signing up to leave comments! I moderate the "Go Vegan!" tribe on,, and am also an active member of the Tofutti Cuties and Vegan Philosophy tribes. I like the fact that everyone in the discussions have faces and names, and that moderators have control over who can post. Disclaimer: I do work there, too.

Sarah said...

cheeky! thanks for not forcing meat on your son - that rocks of you :)

i like veganforum and veggieboards. VB is more . . . discussion-y (sometimes sort of like what i'm sure ben has experienced) and VF seems a bit more tolerant of those who aren't completely vegan (interestingly enough).

i think it would be great if everyone were vegan, but i think anyone who takes steps toward that without full veganism is good :)

Shelly said...

I can't believe no one mentioned Did I miss it? I love that forum. It's well moderated, and all the recipes are vegan, but you don't have to be veggie at all to join. It's a very accepting community. :)

Craig said...

A lot of forums do go downhill as a result of omnis wanting debate. It is fine and well promoting debate, but the main problem is that there are a lot of people saying exactly the same thing.

The amount of times I've seen debators on forums link to the maddox article, believing it to be new information is getting ridiculous!

Most people don't want a debate, they want an argument, and the problem is that most veg*n forums exist so that veg*ns canexchange recipes, chat about vegetarian life in general, and stay away from having to defend their lives, and just live them.

I know that if someone wanted to debate veg*nism with me, much of the time I couldn't be bothered.

I think you've made a good decidion. This definitely isn't the place to debate. It's more a place to talk about food. I hope that any omnis in search of a debate find it, but somehow, I think taht there'll be one or two who won't be able to accept that this isn't the place for it.

Sky said...

I went and signed up to comment on your blog. It's worth the trouble, i always felt weird being annonymous anyways.

I just want to say that I love this site. My dad is close to vegan (McDougal if you know about that - if you don't he eats honey but not oil). My mom is a carnivore and I am a picky vegetarian. It's hard finding things for everyon te eat. Even HARDER- trying to agree on what to feed my baby brother (he is 16 months). He has liked some of your things, so thanks!

KJ Callaway said...

I too stumbled accross this forum. I have been vegetarian on and off for my entire life, then this last 7 years I was vegetarian (though i never drank milk or ate anything with cheese) I had chickens as pets and they would lay eggs and I thought "What am I supposed to do with these! We don't even have a rooster! So we made pies.

I would NEVER kill my pet chickens. Recently because of severe food allergies and finding too many things that were "vegetarian" had milk I became a strict vegan. Thank you so much for your Blog! My blog is
I try to talk about how I am labled an animal communicator and vegan issues.

Sally said...

How about joining the CHIPer email list at YaHoo:

We'd love to have so more members.


Maynard S. Clark said...

and all those "Vegan" e-mail lists at

and likely your LOCAL vegetarian societies, listed (in North America) at (or elsewhere at

and the interesting podcasts

Anonymous said...

thank you for shareing

TPB said...

I first heard about you & your site when I was listening to Good Food and you were sharing how you make vegan Twinkies back in January 2007. I've been hooked on your site ever since! Great work!

I've since purchased my own Laptop Lunchbox, and I've been working on making healthier and attractive lunches for me and my brother.

I'm not a vegan or even a vegetarian, but I've been inspired to fill my diet with more fruit, vegetables and non-animal protein sources because of your lovely meals for your schmoo.

My love for cheese is one of the things that keeps me from going purely vegetarian or vegan. Do you have any suggestions for vegan cheeses that closely approximate the real thing?

Jennifershmoo said...

Ah, the quest for vegan cheese! Opinions vary widely; lots of folks like "Follow Your Heart Vegan Gourmet", but I find it soft and bland.

My favorite so far, and the one I felt came closest to dairy cheese, is Sheese from Scotland. You can mail order Sheese online at places like Vegan Essentials and Food Fight.

Boberace said...

I just saw my doctor yesterday and he suggested I start following a vegan diet. I have been wanting to go vegan for a while but I really didn't know how. Can you suggest any reading material?

Jennifershmoo said...

There are dozens and dozens of great books out there on the subject. For a good handbook on basic vegan nutrition, I would recommend "Becoming Vegan" by Melina and Davis.

If you are transitioning to a plant-based diet primarily to reverse disease and improve your health, I would strongly recommend "Eat To Live" by Fuhrman, or "Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease" by Esselstyn.

There is also a new book out called "Vegan in 30 Days", which I haven't looked at myself.

Good luck!