Vegan Taco Soup

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Despite all the vegan recipes I post here, I am not actually vegan. Someday I’ll devote a whole blog post to this topic, but for now here is a quick rundown of why. I grew up vegetarian and to this day continue to eat this way. On top of that, as a kid, I developed an allergy to dairy, so that made it easier to just tell people that I ate a primarily vegan diet. As humans, we like to categorize and label things and so I think it was easier for people to understand how I ate when I gave them a label. So for a long time, I said I pretty much ate a vegan diet, which is true… except I still consume honey and the occasional egg. But having said that, for environmental and ethical reasons I do my best to eat raw + local honey and free-range, organic eggs (my favorite are ones from the farmer’s market, but I can’t always get them) But this is all besides the point… my point here, which I will go into further depth in another post, is that I eat a primarily plant-based diet. BUT, the important thing here, is to eat whatever feels good to you. Eating healthy is important to me, so is not eating meat, and lastly, I just don’t eat dairy because I just don’t want to die. But society doesn’t have a label for me, so I just say I’m mostly vegan or plant-based, hence why a lot of my recipes are vegan, but the occasional ones have eggs! Anyone, this vegan taco soup is a souper rad meal, you should totally give it a try.

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

So, I really loved sour cream before going plant-based, but now I go for two options, the store-bought vegan sour cream, which although good, has a lot of ingredients and comes packaged in plastic. Or, the other option is making your own vegan cashew sour cream!

The recipe is super simple. Take 1 cup of cashews and soak them in boiling water for 30mins, drain the water off and throw them into a blender with the juice of one lemon, 1/2 tsp salt, and enough water to blend. Blend everything until thick, smooth, and creamy in a high-speed blender and feel free to add more lemon or more salt to taste.

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Super simple, super easy, and the leftovers make a great lunch.

Serves 4-5

Ingredients

  • olive oil
  • 1/2 onion diced
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1 can pinto beans
  • 1 can canned tomatoes
  • 1 cup frozen corn
  • 1/4 salsa
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp veggie stock concentrate
  • 1-2 cups water
  • salt + pepper to taste
  • toppings – cashew sour cream, blue corn tortilla chips, sliced green onions, fresh lime juice

In a large saucepan, sauté the diced onion in olive oil for a few minutes until they begin to soften, next add the minced garlic and cook for another minute. Add the rest of the ingredients and bring to a boil, simmer for 10-15mins. Serve hot with crushed tortillas, green onions, cashew sour cream, and fresh lime juice.

 

Advertisements

Coconut Chia Seed Pudding | A Note on Sugar

Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset

It has been said that sugar is the cigarettes of our generation and honestly I didn’t really realize how addictive it was until I tried to stop eating it. And this is even after I’d given up most refined sugars. I’ve always had a sweet tooth, but I’ve always preferred more natural sugars. I’ve had several birthdays during my childhood where I had half a watermelon as my cake, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t consume my fair share of sugar. I often load up on lots of “natural sugars”, like maple syrup, brown rice syrup, dates, honey, coconut sugar… And even those are unhealthy if consumed regularly. So in the spirit of health, I’ve decided to share one of my favorite sugarless recipes that can still qualify as a dessert.

Coconut Chia Seed Pudding

  • 1 1/2 cup full fat coconut milk
  • 1 1/2 water
  • 6-9 tb chia seeds*
  • 1 lemon zested
  • frozen or fresh berries

Blend the coconut milk and water until smooth. Pour out into a container and mix in the chia seeds and lemon zest. Pour into storage jars and leave in the fridge until the chia seeds have soaked up all the liquid and expanded. Top with fresh or frozen berries.

*depending on how thick or thin you like your pudding

Acai Bowl

Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset

Acai Bowls are one of those standard hip health food things, but they can be really expensive if you buy them at a smoothie bar. Making them at home is less expensive and allows to you make them customizable to your own taste and preferences. It’s taken me many packets of pureed acai to get to this point, but I think I have finally figured out the perfect acai bowl recipe.

If you can’t afford the acai puree, just leave it out. I’m sure that if you had the right combination of blueberries and strawberries, you could totally fake the color and nobody on Instagram would know that you are a poor college student.

Ingredients

1 packet of acai puree (Sambazon is my favorite brand)

1.5 frozen bananas

1/2 frozen strawberries

1/4-1/2 of apple or orange juice and a little small of water

toppings: chopped fruit, buckwheat groats, coconut flakes, chia seeds, granola, flax seed meal… are just a few of my favorites.

Defrost the acai puree under hot water and pour into the blender. Chop up the frozen bananas and add in, along with the strawberries. Start with a small amount of juice and water and blend using the tamper. If your blender is struggling add more liquid. My advice is to start small with the liquid because once you add too much you can’t really take it back. When it is fully blended, transfer into a bowl, and place in the freezer while you get your toppings ready. Then decorate if you so please, otherwise just toss it on and enjoy!

Let me know if you have a favorite acai bowl recipe.

 

Vegan Creamy Cashew Pasta

Processed with VSCO with a5 preset

This is honestly one of my favorite meals. When I lived at home, this recipe found itself on our list of staple meals every week. It was quick, healthy, filling, and oh so delicious. And best of all it was one meal that everyone could enjoy despite being gluten free and vegan.

Processed with VSCO with a5 preset This recipe stemmed from a recipe that my grandmother used to make for us on special occasions. It was my absolute favorite. Unfortunately there came a day when it disappeared from my life. The recipe was filled with dairy and when I developed my food allergy, I had to kiss it goodbye for my own wellbeing. Continue reading

Green Goodness Salad

img_1f448b00b4a0-1

This salad is my go to dinner in college. It is quick, healthy, and delicious and it helps use up some of my required meals at school. Every week I stock up on saurkraut, avocados, and lemons. Then every night I take my metal lunch box container and pick up whatever looks good at the salad bar. Usually it is a mix of spring salad greens, spinach, and a romaine lettuce mix. I also get whatever vegetables look good. This time it was broccoli and cucumbers. Continue reading

The World’s Best Oatmeal

img_3e505b79faa7-1

I’ve always been a fan of oatmeal, but college has made me obsessed with it. I think a lot of people don’t like oatmeal because they think of it as plain boring mush. At least that is how my boyfriend thought of it before I introduced him to the way I made oatmeal. It is so good that there have been days when I have had it for two meals. It is simple, healthy, and pretty cheap…the perfect college student meal!

I calculated it out and for me its averages out to $2.50 for a bowl of oatmeal. Not too bad for a quick and healthy meal!

Continue reading

Fall Picnics

9a811aca1fbe38bdaf80be9fbb3d2395
Photo Credit: Daniel Faro

Picnics are one of my favorite activities. I think it’s because it involves two of my favorites…food and the outdoors. When my boyfriend asks what I want to do on any given free day, I suggest a picnic! He doesn’t complain, because who doesn’t love eating food. But just because fall is here, doesn’t mean we have to stop picnicking. In fact, it’s even more of a reason to go!

Continue reading

Healthy Snacks On the Go

Processed with VSCO with a5 preset

Snacks were not an essential part of my day up until I moved to college. Now snacks are a quick easy way to get nutrition in throughout the day. Snacks are also an essential part to road trips. Whatever your reason is for eating snacks, it is important to reach for the right things. Instead of chips and candy, choose something that will help give you more long lasting energy. Nobody likes a sugar crash.

Continue reading

Gluten-Free Vegan One Pot Pasta

IMG_9815
I made this dish on a relaxed Saturday evening, but it would make a great weeknight meal. Its quick, easy and requires minimal attention while cooking. I ended up pairing this dish with roasted balsamic carrots, because I had an excess of carrots that needed to be used, but a salad would also be great with it.

Continue reading