Tag Archives: vegan diet

Best Packaged Vegetarian and Vegan Foods

These days, many of us are doing our best to be healthy and avoid “processed” foods and eat lots of fresh veggies and protein and all that jazz. But hell, we’re also busy, sometimes in a hurry and sometimes just plain lazy/tired/hangry! There’s nothing wrong with that! These options are especially helpful if you are new to eating vegan/vegetarian and are looking for some help and inspiration. I didn’t realize how many amazing options there were.

These are my go-to foods when I just want a quick meatless meal that’s also tasty and filling.

SWEET EARTH BURRITOS

burritos

I am sort of embarrassed to say that since discovering these burritos, I practically live on them. But they are just SO good. There are several flavors including a few breakfast versions. They are all really high in protein and made of pretty healthy ingredients. Please note that the Kyoto, Curry Tiger, Anasazi and Big Sur Breakfast flavors are fully vegan. The others contain eggs and/or cheese.

GARDEIN MINI CRABLESS CAKES

crab

I admit I love seafood, especially shellfish, and my previous efforts at being fully vegan failed mostly because of this. UNTIL I DISCOVERED THESE BABIES! I went to a vegan restaurant a while back and had vegan crab cakes and didn’t stop talking about them for days. They were just SO good. When I was in the freezer section and WF and realized Gardein also made a version, I was skeptical. I didn’t think they’d be that good but I had to try them. I was so excited to learn they’re really good!! I don’t know how they make vegan ingredients taste like fish. I’m not sure I want to know. But regardless, I am thankful that I can enjoy the taste of crab cakes without thinking about murdered crabs. You really can find vegan versions of EVERYTHING!

BEYOND MEAT BEEF CRUMBLES

feisty

Another thing I loooved as a meat eater was beef tacos and nachos. I haven’t had beef in 5 years and I can’t say I miss it honestly. But I still love Mexican food and try to recreate my favorite restaurant dishes as often as possible. I was so excited to find the “Feisty” Beyond Meat Beef Crumbles because it has a great taco seasoning flavor. I won’t lie, the crumbles do have a bit of that funky fake meat aftertaste if you eat them alone, but if you slather salsa and guacamole on top, you’ll never notice. The texture is just like crumbled beef.

BEYOND MEAT SINGLE SERVE MEALS

meals

Stop the press. These meals have SAVED me at times when I am craving restaurant food (and also times when I have very low blood sugar and I am within 5 minutes of a meltdown). There are only 4 flavors so far – Indian Curry, Korean BBQ, Vietnamese Lemongrass and Roasted Sweet Potato Chili; however, they are really good. My favorite is the Korean BBQ. They are all super high protein and have a good balance of fats/carbs too. They heat up in 5 minutes and will keep you full for hours, but also keep your taste buds happy.

SWEET EARTH BREAKFAST SANDWICHES

break

I used to live on my homemade Egg McMuffin sandwiches. I had a hard time saying goodbye to Canadian bacon. However, Sweet Earth has made all my breakfast sandwich dreams come true! They have several flavors – Harmless Ham & Chickpea Patty (the only vegan one), Meatless Sausage Egg and Gouda, Harmless Ham Egg & Swiss and Benevolent Bacon, Egg & Cheddar. My mouth is watering just thinking about them.

ORGANIC VEGETARIAN CHILI WITH RED BEANS & ONION

chili

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trader Joe’s recently changed the packaging/label on the veg chili and I have to say I’m in love with this new 1970s Brady Bunch theme. I just want to stuff my face with chili every time I see the new cans on the shelf. Anyway, the recipe itself didn’t change at all (or if it did, I can’t tell) and there have been many times when I’ve lived solely off this chili for several days straight. Unlike a lot of chilis, this one really strikes a perfect balance of salty, spicy, beans, and “meat” (it’s tofu). It’s a great all-around meal that’s very filling and has 15 grams of protein….pa pow! It’s a tad spicy but in a very good way. Add a little sprinkle of shredded vegan cheese and green onions (because I am obsessed with green onions) and you have yourself a tasty meal.

 

 

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Easy (Non-Green) Salads

Getting our fruits and veggies is SO important for so many reasons. I don’t know about you but I am not a fan of boring piles of greens on a plate. I like really bright, unique combos — lots of crunch, a bit of acid and tons of flavor.

As a general rule, my salads pretty much always consist of at least one veggie, usually a fruit, an herb/spice, a crunchy element, and some type of oil and/or vinegar. I like to try new combos and see what I can come up with.

I’ve listed some of my all-time favorite non-traditional salad recipes that all take only about 5 minutes to make and are super fresh, healthy and tasty! (All you do is chop stuff up and mix it all together in a bowl!)

Blood Orange & Avocado Salad

  • 1 avocado (sliced)
  • 1 blood orange
  • 1/4 cup toasted pistachios
  • 1/4 cup shaved fennel bulb
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp sherry vinegar
  • salt and pepper

Cucumber & Feta Salad

  • 1 cucumber, chopped
  • 4 oz. feta, crumbled
  • One-half purple onion (sliced lengthwise as thinly as possible)
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh mint
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
  • 2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Roasted Pepper & Balsamic Salad

  • 1.5 tsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. pepper
  • 2 roasted red peppers (you can also roast fresh ones on the stove)
  • 2 large tomatoes
  • 1/3 cup fresh basil (julienned)

Heirloom Tomato Salad

  • 2 ears sweet corn
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tsp. red wine vinegar
  • 2 heirloom tomatoes, cut in chunks
  • 2 avocados, pitted, peeled, and sliced
  • Salt and pepper to taste