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Laura Lea Balanced Cookbook

September 8, 2019

As a self-proclaimed “foodie,” I love trying new cookbooks and learning from different chefs. I recently discovered local Nashville chef and author Laura Lea Bryant, and her cookbook has quickly become a favorite.


The Laura Lea Balanced Cookbook is loaded with healthy and equally delicious versions of many classic recipes. The book not only provides recipes, but also has a full section that teaches you about different foods, diet preferences, cooking methods, and recipe substitutions. Laura Lea utilizes specific symbols for each recipe that make it easy to navigate what is vegetarian, vegan, paleo, gluten-free, and dairy-free. The recipes are also organized in a simple format, so you can quickly flip to the section you’re wanting to focus on such as snacks, poultry, beef, and more!

My 2 favorite recipes from the cookbook:

My first favorite is the PB&J No-Bake Energy Squares. These are a unique and tasty snack for the days you are craving something sweet yet nourishing.

My second favorite is the BBQ Shrimp and Quinoa Grits. This is a fun and healthier take on the classic southern dish. There’s zero flavor lacking, and she also includes a bbq sauce recipe you can make yourself if you’re avoiding sugars or artificial ingredients. 

Erin Judge


Erin is a nutrition educator with Be Well at NPL, working to bring easy-to-digest nutrition information in the hands of all Nashvillians. If she's not in the kitchen or reading up on the latest nutrition research, you can find her running the local trails with her dog.