Blog Archives

It is time to stop asking vegans where they get their calcium and protein from.

I am always surprised when I tell someone I don’t eat dairy or meat that they still ask: “Where do you get your calcium and protein from?” or “Do you eat a lot of beans and rice?” My answers nowadays: “I get those nutrients from almost every single piece of food I put in my mouth. Virtually all foods in nature have calcium and protein as part of their make up” and “I love beans and rice and eat many varieties of both fairly regularly, but maybe not anymore often than you do.”

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Recipe: Spiced Pumpkin Bread Gluten-free and Vegan if desired

Spiced Pumpkin Bread

This spiced pumpkin bread is perfect as a breakfast treat or mid-day snack. The inspiration was adapted from the pumpkin spice bread recipe in “The Joy of Vegan Baking” by Colleen Patrick-Goudreau. The recipe uses an egg replacement since it is vegan, but can be adapted by using 3 eggs in place of the flaxseed.

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Root Vegetable Slaw – A fresh twist on the traditional mayo based cole slaw and high in minerals

root vegetable slaw

It may look like traditional cole slaw, but the fresh root vegetables and light dressing used are nothing near as heavy as the traditional mayonnaise based cole slaw. You may use whatever root vegetables are in season and available from your local farmers market to create this root vegetable slaw.

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Pistachio Pesto. Use on pasta, veggies, or as a sandwich spread.

I love pistachios, so why not make pistachio pesto?! Pistachios are naturally high in many vitamins and minerals including copper, phosphorous and the B vitamins. Additionally, pistachios are rich in lutein and zeaxanthin, two carotenoids that help protect your eyes. They contain mono and poly-unsaturated fatty acids, which are beneficial for your heart.

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Simple recipes for Vegan and Gluten-Free Vanilla Cupcakes

Vanilla Cupcakes

Here are two tasty and simple recipes for vegan and gluten free cupcakes, followed by a vegan frosting recipe. These cupcakes taste amazing! They are perfect for children’s birthday parties, or for anyone with a sweet tooth. Kids will not even notice they are “healthy”. 😉 Both were adapted from recipes in “Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World” by Isa Chandra Moskowitz & Terry Hope Romero.

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Brussels Sprout Salad with Avocado and Pumpkin Seeds

Brussels Sprout Salad

This brussels sprout salad recipe is from the November 2012 issue of Whole Living. I did not alter much, except in my version I used no salt or pepper. It is a delicious and a great source of fiber, greens, and healthy fat. Mix it up with an oil other than olive, like flax seed or hemp seed oil, to boost the healthy fat to include omega-3.

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Recipe: White Bean Cilantro Dip. High in fiber and antioxidants.

White Bean Cilantro Dip

Cilantro is a rich source of many essential oils and antioxidants, including quercetin, a bioflavonoid that is commonly recommended during allergy season for anti-histamine support. Cilantro is also loaded with vitamins C, A and K. Per 100g (or a little over 1/3 cup) cilantro provides 45% of the RDA for vitamin C, and a whopping 225% and 258% of vitamins A & K respectively.

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Recipe: Oven Braised Turnips. Easy and delicious vegan side dish, or a light lunch with a fresh salad.

If you loved the garlic mashed turnips recipe, then you have to try this one next! Oven braised turnips prepared cut, instead of mashed, is a great way to really enjoy the true earthy flavor of turnips. It can be used as a very tasty side dish, or even eaten as a light lunch with a fresh salad.

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Recipe: Vegan Baked Enchilada Casserole

Everyone loves enchiladas right? Have you had an enchilada casserole before? How about a vegan version? The “cheeze” sauce used in this enchilada casserole recipe is so tasty and can be used in any Southwestern dish that calls for cheese, such as 7 layer dip! I recommend making homemade salsa for this recipe if possible.

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Recipe: Parsnip and Apple Soup. Delicious and nutritious, creamy, vegan, with a touch of sweetness.

Parsnips are an excellent sources of soluble and insoluble dietary fiber. 100 g root provides 4.9 mg or 13% of fiber. The root is rich in many B-complex groups of vitamins such as folic acid, vitamin B-6 (pyridoxine), thiamin, and pantothenic acid as well as vitamin K and vitamin E.

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Blue Cheese Dressing made with vegan mayonnaise. Your friends may never realize it is vegan!

For the vegans who still want to enjoy the special “food events” like the big game, barbecues, and birthday parties, you will love this blue cheese dressing. Great over barbecue tempeh or as a veggie dip! This is very quick and easy to make. I have had non-vegan friends try this and not notice that it was not real blue cheese.

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Choosing a plant based protein

Individual or isolated plant based proteins are poorly suited for human use as relied upon by many picky or uneducated vegans or vegetarians. Most lack one or more of the essential amino acids, or simply contain so little of one of them that it is as if the amino acid were absent. Hemp protein is a good example of this. It is a wonderful food, which should be included in your diet, but don’t rely on it as a primary protein source.

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Holiday Vegan French Toast made with “Coconut Nog”

This vegan french toast recipe uses coconut “nog” as one of the ingredients and is great for a December brunch.

Coconut by-products like milk, meat, butter, oil, water, and flour, work great in many recipes. They are a great source of medium chain triglycerides (MCT), which are fats that are used immediately by your body for energy and not stored. Coconut is considered a “functional food” because it provides many health benefits beyond its nutritional content. They are high in fiber, and many minerals including manganese which helps maintain blood sugar balance, phosphorus which is good for bone strength, and magnesium which helps muscle cramping and soreness.

Ingredients needed:

Serves 8

1 banana
1 cup coconut nog (sold in most health foods stores with other milk and eggnog products)
1 cup rice milk or alternative milk of your choice
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
1 1/2 teaspoons arrowroot
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 loaf multigrain or gluten free bread

Cooking instructions:

Place all ingredients except bread in a blender or food processor and blend until thoroughly combined. Pour into a shallow dish and set aside.

Heat griddle and brush with oil. Submerge bread slices into the batter and turn to coat. Place onto the hot pan. Cook until golden brown, flip and cook on the reverse side.

Sprinkle with cinnamon and serve with warm maple syrup.

Recipe by Michelle

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Black Bean Pumpkin Chili with Grass Fed Ground Beef. Easy to make Vegan or Paleo.

This pumpkin chili recipe is perfect for a chilly Fall evening.

The importance of grass fed beef

Grass fed beef has countless benefits over standard grain fed beef. First and foremost, it is healthier for the cattle. Cows bodies do not properly digest corn and other grain, and they are typically given antibiotics and other pharmaceuticals to combat any diseases caused from the stress of trying to digest grain.

Additionally, grass fed cows are not forced to live on factory feed lots, which are unsanitary and inhumane. Grass fed beef is naturally high in Omega-3 fatty acids, and low in Omega-6 fatty acids which may contribute to heart disease. Grazing also benefits the soil by putting carbon into the ground. Healthier soil means healthier food. And, lastly, it tastes better! Give it a try and I bet you will love it.

Ingredients needed

Yield 10 servings

1 pound grass fed ground beef (optional)
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium sweet yellow pepper, chopped
2 medium carrots, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
2 cans (15 ounces each) black beans, rinsed and drained
2 cans (14.5 ounces each) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 can (15 ounces) pumpkin
2 chipotle peppers, in adobo sauce
2 teaspoons dried parsley flakes
2 teaspoons chili powder
1-1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
1-1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt

Cooking instructions

In a large skillet, brown the ground beef until no longer pink. Add onion, yellow pepper and carrot and saute until tender. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Transfer mix to a 5 quart slow cooker; stir in remaining ingredients. Cover and cook on low for 5-6 hours or until heated through. Enjoy!

Recipe Michelle

Photo Sean Greenspan

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Garlic Mashed Turnips Recipe

This turnips recipe is a great alternative to regular mashed potatoes. I have, however, added potatoes to this turnips recipe because I can actually get my daughter to eat it that way! Turnips are slightly bitter, but the potatoes can be omitted if desired. Turnips are naturally high in Vitamin C, fiber and calcium. They also have less calories than potatoes. If you buy turnips with the greens, you can chop them and add them to the recipe for an added nutritional boost. Happy Fall!

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