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VegWeb was founded in 1996 by Yvette Ehler. The website was dedicated to filling the need for a vegan website and online community. It became the #1 vegetarian site on the web after a decade. In 2009, Yvette brought in Colleen Holland to continue running the site and magazine. Colleen Holland in turn brought on Laura Beck to help run the site. They are now dedicated to delivering vegan recipes to the millions of users who visit the website each day.
VegWeb contains 15,000 recipes dedicated to the vegan lifestyle and the corresponding Vegan 101 section is a great feature for users who have just recently begun to live as a vegan. The Vegan 101 section includes information about egg and dairy substitutes, vegan baking, cooking oils, pesky animal ingredients, and dining out. The section is very beneficial and addresses the most common questions and concerns of users who have just entered the Vegan world.
The blog and forum features are also great. The blog contains numerous articles about various categories including holiday cooking and microwave tips and is updated weekly. The forum has 16 sections where users can go to discuss every aspect of Vegan life and cooking including Happy Hour, Lovin' the Loot, Stroller Derby, Sweet and Sour, as well as Animal House and the Cookbook Lab where users can contribute their own recipes in addition to cooking experiences which did not go well.
In the Cookbook Lab users who sign up with the website can post about topics including their first vegan/vegetarian recipes, questions they have for other users, and how to "veganize" recipes which include meats and dairy products.
The filters which are provided on the website are definitely helpful however being able to filter the recipes by difficulty level would be very beneficial to users. By assigning a difficulty level to recipes newer vegan cooks could view recipes which they feel they could successfully prepare while filtering out recipes they do not feel they have the necessary skills to prepare.
Including a meal planner would also be a beneficial to users. This feature could allow users to plan out the meals they wish to cook and giving them the opportunity to view a shopping list created by the meal planner would make the process of gathering the ingredients easier.
Finally, expanding the Vegan 101 section to include basic how-to's about cooking not just vegan life would be extremely beneficial to the new users which the website appears to attract. Including videos or articles about basic cooking techniques including the proper way to cook vegan items including tofu and even how to chop certain vegetables correctly or easier would be a great addition to the site. These articles would help newer cooks feel more comfortable attempting some of the recipes on the website.
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