vegan mealplan

Summer On a Plate

It’s summer, and yeah it’s almost never awfully hot in Detroit (to me this is not hot) but I’m going tropical. It’s more about feeling like you’re on vacation than it is cooling down, but we can do a little of that as well! Today, lunch is a mix of sweet, spicy, and chilled. No stove tops for this one!

Tropical Tofu Salad

  • 2- 1 lb packages of firm tofu, drained and pressed
  • 5 TBSP low sodium soy sauce
  • 4 TBSP cane vinegar (after tasting this I think rice vinegar would be a fine substitute)
  • juice of a lemon and a little of its zest
  • 2 red chili peppers
  • 1 bundle of green onions, tops
  • ¼ cup unsweetened coconut flakes

Directions: Prepare your tofu. Completely drain and press it, then cut it into chunks and set it aside in a mixing bowl. In a food processor, mill the coconut flakes into an even finer flake so your texture-hating significant other will eat it. Then set it aside. Skip if you’re all about that texture. Now, combine the soy sauce, cane vinegar, lemon juice, lemon zest, red chilies, and green onions and whiz it around until it’s well combined and the vegetables well chopped. Pour over the chunked tofu and then combine the marinade into it by mashing with a fork. Let it set in the fridge for several hours before serving so the flavors can marry. Serve with the breads, toppings, and spreads of your choice! Try to work with the flavor profile though, a’ight? Pinky promise?

Chilled Chili-Mango-Melon Soup

  • flesh of a medium cantaloupe, scooped out
  • 2 cups frozen mango, thawed (you can use fresh but I seriously suck at cutting them)
  • 1 red chili pepper, deseeded
  • 1 “ ginger root piece, peeled
  • 2 TBSP water
  • 1 cup canned coconut milk
  • 1 tsp molasses (optional)

Directions: In a food processor, combine the ginger root and red chili pepper with the water until it’s as homogeneous as you can get it. Add the coconut milk and molasses, then combine once again to hopefully get the first bit milled even finer. Start adding in the cantaloupe and mango in batches until fully combined. Let chill in the fridge for a few hours before serving so the flavors can marry.

Lunch today was excellent as usual. Even though I eat similar meals every day, I never tire of them. Just imagine if you could eat your favourite foods every day. Would you get sick of them? 😜 That is how I feel. And really my lunch is different every day even though I use similar ingredients. The veggies are always fresh and locally grown so they taste slightly different day to day. Sometimes we change up the seasonings, we might add more tomato paste, or leave out onion. We switch up the starches, using different kinds of rice or potatoes. The most important thing is that these meals satisfy me completely and that I’m eating my favourite foods in abundance. Usually my meals are: oatmeal for breakfast, veggies and rice for lunch, watermelon and fruit for dinner. This is one tasty routine! 😋 That being said, my meals will gradually change as the seasons change. I expect to incorporate more citrus, potatoes and legumes as we move into winter. 👌 What’s your favourite meal routine?

Not my prettiest plate!

Cauliflower White Sauce

This is another one of those dairy free recipes that aren’t really meant to fool anyone, but rather it offers a great and savory alternative to a more traditional recipe. I could have made a roux-based white sauce with Daiya shreds, and I certainly do at times, but I just really felt like my stomach was asking for something a bit lighter and brighter than that. Choose your noodle and your fixings!

  • 2 TBSP olive oil
  • 1 medium head of cauliflower, stem removed and roughly chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • ½ small yellow onion, diced
  • salt, to taste
  • black pepper, to taste
  • red chili flake, to the desired spiciness (can be omitted if you cannot tolerate chili)
  • 14 oz silken tofu, drained
  • ¼ cup nutritional yeast (I prefer Bragg’s) 
  • ⅓ cup unsweetened almond milk
  • juice of half a lemon and a bit of its zest

Directions: In salted, boiling water cook the cauliflower until fork tender. Drain it and set it aside. Heat up the olive oil in a saucepan and saute the onion and garlic. Give a dash of salt, stir. Add in the cooked and drained cauliflower and mash it with your cooking spoon or a fork. Add another dash of salt, your black pepper, your red chili flake, and stir. Slide the silken tofu in and mash it as well. Finish off the ingredients with the nutritional yeast, almond milk, and lemon juice + zest. Stir together and finish seasoning if more is desired. Give it a few minutes for the raw flavors to cook off and then use an immersion blender or transfer to a standing blender to puree.

I call this collection of foodstuffs “vegetable explosion pasta.” We already know I love my edamame noodles because it’s my protein and my noodle all in one. That way, I just go ham on my vegetables, ladle in my vegetable (!) based sauce, and sprinkle on more nutritional yeast (because I have a new expensive problem). Take your five a day and kick it in the ass! 

Pick any combination you love but my explosion is–

  • onion
  • (more) garlic
  • carrot
  • bell pepper
  • pimiento pepper (fresh)
  • sun dried tomatoes
  • mushrooms
  • spinach 
  • broccoli
  • Italian parsley

BBQ Bean Burgers

Hmm. I’m going to do a drive by this time. I usually write some assortment of words here, but ahem–beans, spices, cheap, high yield, vegan, go.

  • 1 lb dried pinto beans, soaked and prepared to package instruction
  • 2 TBSP low sodium soy sauce
  • 2 TBSP Worcheshire sauce 
  • salt, to taste (beans are greedy for salt but remember soy sauce has quite a bit already)
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp ground mustard
  • 1 TBSP chili powder
  • 1 TBSP paprika
  • ½ TBSP ground cumin
  • 1 TBSP garlic powder
  • 1 TBSP onion powder
  • 1 TBSP brown sugar
  • 2 TBSP flax meal soaked in 6 TBSP water (to make flax egg)
  • 1 cup rolled oats, milled into a flour

Directions: Drive by. Do your beans ahead of time. Mix the flax meal and water ahead of time, set it in the fridge. Mill oats, set aside. Mix all the salt, brown sugar, and spices together–mmhmm, set aside. In a food processor, puree the beans. You might need a bit of water to help break it apart but you might not! Spoon the bean puree into a large mixing bowl. Toss in the spices and pour in the soy sauce, Worcheshire, and flax egg. Stir the crap out of that. Toss in the oat flour and stir the crap out of that again. Form into approximately 4 oz patties. The mixture should make about 10-12 of those depending on accuracy. Heat up an oiled skillet, fry on one side, flip, and cover skillet with lid until cooked through. Do it batches because life sucks sometimes. They’re a little fragile at first but set up pretty well after cooling for a bit. Serve with sides and toppings.

Tips For Vegans On Vacation

Spent the past few days at a friends cottage with a bunch of my other close friends, none of which are vegan. It is actually super easy to eat yummy / healthy / and completely vegan meals while on vacation as long as you prepare for it… Here is what I made / brought: 

- I pre-made a chickpea salad and a quinoa salad

- fruit to snack on

- apple with almond butter

- veggies to make fresh salads

- bread and peanut butter for an easy breakfast

- carrots / celery / rice crackers with hummus

- nuts / seeds

- and I ate other meals / snacks that were there that were vegan for example tortilla chips and salsa or guacamole, vegan pizza, and smoothies!

hope this helps a few of you out there that are planning a summer getaway and needed meal / snack ideas and inspiration!! xx

Asian-Inspired Edamame Noodle Soup

Even when you regularly meal prep, it’s nice to have a low-ingredient and low-resistance meal prep to lower the workload, especially if you’re catching yourself foodless right before the work week is starting. There are only a few things to chop, and honest to God if you just chopped them up in the food processor I’d be right there with you!

I’m giving myself no marks for authenticity, but this dish is a way to have some basic Asian flavors packed away into one Tupperware container ready to go for a packed lunch. It only seems to get better over time as well! If you use the suggested Edamame noodles, you’ve got a vegan dish with no need to add another protein source! Topping out at 28g per serving, it even addresses my (admittedly 5’3”) lifts.

So, let’s recap. This meal is an excellent source of–

  • Protein
  • Fiber
  • Micronutrients (especially iron and Vit C)

It’s–

  • Vegan
  • Low Carb

Recipe

  • ¼ cup sesame seed oil
  • 2 “ piece of ginger, minced
  • 5 cloves of garlic, minced
  • ½ onion, cut into strings
  • 2 jalapenos, deseeded and minced
  • ⅓ cup low sodium soy sauce (use a little less if you think it will already be sufficiently salty)
  • 12 oz bag Mann’s Power Blend Superfood vegetable mix (basically some mixed vegetables, a bag of broccoli slaw or any mix prepared by hand would do)
  • 16 oz Explore Cuisine Edamame Spaghetti
  • 6 cups vegetable stock (must be no salt added due to the abundant soy sauce)
  • 15 oz can coconut milk
  • cilantro and green onions for serving

Directions: Prepare all your vegetables. Heat up the sesame seed oil in a large pot over high heat. Stir-fry the garlic and ginger, stirring the whole time to prevent burning. After a minute, add in the onion strings and jalapenos and cook until soft and fragrant. Deglaze using the soy sauce. Add in the stock and coconut milk and bring to a boil. Take the heat down to low and let it simmer for 15 minutes to combine those flavors. Add in the edamame noodles and the vegetable mix (mine was napa, brussel sprouts, kale, broccoli, kohlrabi, and carrot), these won’t take long to cook at all and won’t need a lot of heat to do so! After about 5 minutes (10 tops) the noodles and vegetables should be cooked. You can let those flavors marry on the stove longer or just dig in. I’m telling you it gets better in the fridge, though. Serve with garnish! I chose some cilantro and a little orange zest. Serves 8.