Wednesday, July 28, 2010


So I've been following other vegan bloggers around the U.S. pretty much since becoming vegan. And through this I found out that Chipotle is offering vegan Gardein "chicken" in some of its locations. It started in NYC, which makes sense. Then moved to LA, also a smart choice. Both of these locations have huge vegan populations and are very open to the idea of eating less meat in general. So I'm thinking YES, Seattle HAS to be next, where else would they go? Apparently Denver... yea makes sense? NOT. Come one Chipotle we need this in Seattle! It would be HUGE, I promise!

I took to emailing Chipotle regarding this issue... no response. So I commented on their facebook page and all they could tell me was that there were no plans as of yet to release it here. SO not fair. I guess I'll have to hunt down a Chipotle on my trip to New York in September to try this goodness!

Took this picture from here.

Come on Chipotle! We need this!!!


Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Spelt Flour Banana Bread

OMG. Let me just tell you ahead of time how delicious this was. I'm currently scarfing down slices of this covered in soy-free Earth Balance and couldn't be happier with the way it turned out. I got the recipe out of one of my favorite cookbooks, Vegan Yum Yum. It's definitely different from conventional banana breads I've made over the years. For one, it is more of a sweet bread than a savory bread and it has hints of cinnamon and nutmeg that make it ultra-amazing. I had extra bananas that I threw in the freezer when they started to get too ripe for me to eat and made this beautiful creation out of it!

I've long been a fan of banana bread but I have never tasted one that was so flavorful and had perfect consistency. It was crispy on the outside, soft and wonderful on the inside. This is definitely a keeper as far as recipes go.



Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Daily Caloric Values

So I found this neat website that will analyze the foods you eat to tell you the nutritional information of them: It also has a tracker to help you see where the calories you eat come from. Based on the information I gave them (height, weight, activity level, etc) I should aim for about 2213 kcal/day to maintain my weight. It also suggested that these were the minimums I attain for daily nutrients, which is what I found most helpful.

Your Recommended Minimums
Total Carbohydrate 130.0 g
Dietary Fiber 25.0 g
Linoleic Acid 12000.0 mg
Alpha-Linolenic Acid 1100.0 mg
Protein 46 g
Vitamin A 2333.0 IU
Vitamin C 75.0 mg
Vitamin D 200.0 IU
Vitamin E 15.0 mg
Vitamin K 90.0 mcg
Thiamin 1.1 mg
Riboflavin 1.1 mg
Niacin 14.0 mg
Vitamin B6 1.3 mg
Folate 400.0 mcg
Vitamin B12 2.4 mcg
Pantothenic Acid 5.0 mg
Biotin 30.0 mcg
Choline 425.0 mg
Calcium 1000.0 mg
Chromium 25.0 mcg
Copper 0.9 mg
Flouride 3.0 mg
Iodine 150.0 mcg
Iron 18.0 mg
Magnesium 310.0 mg
Manganese 1.8 mg
Molybdenum 45.0 mcg
Phosphorus 700.0 mg
Selenium 55.0 mcg
Zinc 8.0 mg

I plan on using this information to track my diet for the next few weeks to see if I am actually getting all the nutrients I need like I think I am. We shall see! :)


Morning Meal

I love oatmeal. And thank goodness for that because I can't think of an easier, healthier, more satisfying thing to consume every morning to get myself ready for the day. I never feel hungry later till lunch, it tastes AMAZING due to the stuff I sprinkle on top of it, and it's so easy to make I can do it before work!

I tend to overcook my oatmeal a little bit because I like it on the sticky side. Usual toppings are from the following: blueberries, raspberries, bananas, walnuts, almonds, flax seed, wheat germ, agave nectar, maple syrup, cinnamon, soy milk, and/or almond milk.

Today I went with almond milk, walnuts, agave and cinnamon! No fruit this morning because I haven't been to the grocery store in far too long :). Of course as I went to take this picture my camera battery died, so here is a wonderful, high-quality iPhone picture. And yes, I still have the original 1st-gen one.


Sunday, May 16, 2010

It all started one night...

I've been vegan for a whopping four months and 16 days. It's not a long time but what I've come to feel and learn about veganism has grown so much in that short period.

I started down this path originally because I had gotten heavy. Not obese, but for someone who had always been rail thin growing up while eating whatever I wanted, this was a change. Veganism wasn't what I had intended to use as a dieting tool. Originally I went to the diet section of Barnes and Noble and saw a book entitled "Skinny Bitch." I read the back of the book and the first few chapters and thought, "yea I can do this!" Unfortunately the parts I had read had no mention of the dreaded vegan word so once I actually started to read the book I was quite pissed. I've read that book three times over the past few years and each time I read it, I thought, ugh these girls are crazy. Meat and dairy are SO necessary for your body! The last time I read it however, I was at a different time in my life, and the idea of avoiding those things didn't seem so far-fetched. I started the "diet" on new years as my resolution and have never looked back.

I know that other vegans reading this will immediately look to my story and judge. She isn't in this for ethical reason? What?!? But wait a minute. While I didn't start this journey on a quest to save animals, that is now a major reason why I'm sticking to it. While researching new recipes, ways of life, vegan products to make life easier, etc I found that I really did care about how these animals were being treated. It even made me look at my dog Eva differently. Suddenly when I saw a pig wagging it's tail it reminded me of her. A fish swimming would catch my eye and I'd see the look she gives me at home. If I wouldn't dare harm her in any way, how could I condone harming any other living being that feels just as she would?

Another big reason I do this is because I don't want to be involved in the factory farming we have in our country today. Watch Food, Inc and even with the volume off the pictures of the trampled dirt covered in cows as far as you can see will tell you how disgusting the practice is. When possible, I buy local. I try to buy organic as much as I can afford because not only does it mean that your food is pesticide-free, but you're also not supporting Monsanto who owns the majority of crops these days. I won't get into that here, because it is an issue in itself. But I encourage any of you who don't know what I am talking about to research it, because it is negatively affecting you, the government and farmers in ways you couldn't even imagine. By only consuming veggies, I am also positively contributing to the fight against global warming! It takes far less resources to grow crops for food than it does to grow a cow or a pig.

The health results once I switched were almost instantaneous. I lost five lbs in the first month and people started commenting immediately on how much my skin glowed and how healthy I looked. I went from being an insomniac to sleeping peacefully through the night (minus the past few days I've had a sinus infection and haven't been able to sleep at all... ). Before going vegan, I had massive migraines almost every night, prompting me to see multiple doctors trying to diagnose where the problem was coming from. None could tell me. But the moment I went vegan I never had another migraine. My first sinus infection of the year I am having currently. Those who know me my whole life know that I used to have them so frequently growing up that I stopped seeing a doctor for antibiotics to treat them. I had a jumbo size box of augmentin in my medicine cabinet at all times.

Have I slipped since during vegan? Absolutely; a few times. But this journey is a learning process. Going from a meat and egg based diet to one focused on veggies - what are those!? - is definitely a difficult process. But I plan on sticking with it for the long term.

I get asked questions all the time about why I chose to do this, what do I eat, do I get any protein, etc. I started this blog to answer all those questions. To help people see that I'm not a weirdo because I don't eat meat or dairy. And hopefully I'll convince a few to join me along the way. :)

Other foods I avoid: Processed Sugars (I try to use maple syrup or rice syrups wherever possible), high-fructose corn syrup (this is an absolute no-no for me), refined grains (white pasta, bread and white rice), coffee, and black tea (I'll occasionally splurge on a soy chai). I still have much room for improvement, and I'm learning new things every day!

So what do I eat? Well today was a funky day. I had to get up extremely early - 5:45am! - so that I could volunteer at Beat the Bridge. So when I woke up I had my morning fruit, today a banana. I always start my day with this and try not to eat anything else for at least 1/2 so that the fruit and all the powerful antioxidants can make it through to my intestines before anything else comes and clogs is all up. On the way out the door I grabbed a homemade granola bar to munch on for some quick energy. My next meal was technically my breakfast and I had it at the lovely Portage Bay Cafe (they serve meat too, and I must say this was my favorite spot when I was a carnivore). I'm extremely lucky to live where I do because there are many restaurants that cater to my diet automatically and I don't have to pick and choose to get a full meal. I chose to have the curry tofu scramble. I didn't used to be a fan of tofu, and let me tell you it was because I had just had bad tofu. When prepared properly, this stuff is one of my favorite foods. The scramble was great because it had the tofu (protein) mixed in with big leafy greens (more protein) rounded out with some red potatoes (good carbs) and tomatoes (antioxidants). My third meal of the day (lunch) was leftover pizza. How in the world do I eat pizza!? Well, let me tell you. Vegan pizza is BOMB. So I've scoped out some local pizza places that have vegan dough (it tastes just like the regular dough - even Papa John's is vegan!). Then I get no cheese and have them pile on the veggies. Sometimes I'll even throw a little pesto on their as well. I'm eating dinner as we speak, and let me tell you it was a good one. I was super tired after my long day so I needed something quick and easy. I had a portobello mushroom that needed eating in my fridge so I broiled that with balsamic vinegar and olive oil drizzled on top and made myself some whole wheat penne pasta. While the pasta is cooking I also throw baby carrots in there too. They end up being perfectly soft by the time the pasta is done cooking. Today I added a little frozen corn to the mix when I put in the tomato sauce. I added a little faux parmesan that I made myself - nutritional yeast is a miracle worker - for my daily B12 shot and voila! A flavorful, healthy VEGAN meal.

I'll be updating frequently as I hope to let people in on my diet, keep up to date on veg news, and also answer any questions you guys have. Let me know what you think!