Posts tagged with vegetarian:

What’s the deal with subscription boxes anyways?


I’m assuming most of you have heard of subscription boxes by now. There’s a good chance they’re inundating your Facebook newsfeed ads, and your blog-obsessed friends (guilty) have been posting about them on Instagram. So, what’s the deal?

Subscription boxes are put together by third parties, not the brands themselves.

The boxes contain a variety of samples, and are usually food, makeup, or skincare themed. The food boxes (like my Urthbox pictured above) often allow customization. We’re talking about gluten-free, vegan or diet options. Picky eaters are welcome here.

Urthbox delivers monthly, but some services have a weekly option.

They’re delivered wherever you want them to be. Your apartment, your office— the world is your oyster.

Exploring new products, especially for special diets, is very hit or miss. Nothing’s more disappointing then dropping money on a bag of snacks at Whole Foods, only to discover you don’t like them. Ordering an Urthbox allowed me to try out 15 new snacks in a cost-effective way. (My favorites were the Beanitos chips and Svelte Cappuccino Protein Shake!)

I got a deal on a three-month subscription from Gilt City, so keep an eye out on other discount services, like Groupon or Living Social.

Cherry Smoothie Bowl


Sundays are for smoothie bowls. Never had a smoothie bowl? It’s basically your chance to have ice cream for breakfast. Make a very thick smoothie, then top with seeds, fresh fruit and shredded coocnut.

  • 1 banana
  • 1/2C frozen cherries
  • 1/2C almond milk
  • dried cranberries
  • pepitas
  • chia seeds
  • raspberries
  • shredded coconut

Slice some of the banana to save for garnish. Blend the rest of the banana, frozen cherries and almond milk— it should be a thick consistency. Pour into a bowl and top with cranberries, pepitas, chia seeds, raspberries and shredded coconut.

Hey Madde! Love your blog! I recently made the switch to veganism (and am loving it!) I read the book the Kind Diet, and was wondering if you had any other recommendations?

- Asked by perpetual-feelings

The Kind Diet was actually the first book I read when I made the switch too! It’s still one of my favorites. Here are some other great reads:

Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer
This is his only nonfiction book, and it’s a fascinating read. Although it’s disclosed that he’s chosen a vegetarian diet, he addresses the history of humans eating animals objectively. 

Skinny Bitch by Rory Freedman
This book is a slap in the face, but in the best way. It’s aggressive and abrasive, but sometimes you need someone to give you the facts straight and shove you in the right direction.

Cooked by Michael Pollan
Although not about plant foods, this book makes a simple and striking statement about processed versus whole, cooked foods. “Taking back control of cooking may be the single most important step anyone can take to help make the American food system healthier and more sustainable.” 

Everyday Happy Herbivore and Happy Herbivore Abroad by Lindsay Nixon
Lindsay’s cookbooks are favorites, no questions asked. Her blog and weekly meal plans are also lifesavers. ‘Abroad’ is a gem. She tells stories from all of the time she’s spent overseas and how it inspires her cooking.

Introducing TCV | Five & Under


I’m excited to announce a new resource for anyone who considers themselves extremely busy, extremely lazy, or just extremely hungry. TCV Five & Under is a collection of 50+ recipes that are all five ingredients or less, which usually take less than 30 minutes to make. 

So instead of spaghetti with sauce from a jar, you can just as easily make my signature Avocado Alfredo. Or mashed cauliflower with chives instead of potatoes from a box. Take any number of smoothies to go instead of skipping breakfast!

I know how hard it is to eat healthy on a budget, especially when you’re strapped for time. But these recipes have all been life savers for me, and I hope they help you too.

Check out all of the recipes here.

Love and veggies,

Individual Flatbread Hummus Pizza


Sunday night is pizza night. This week, I went the Mediterranean route choosing hummus, spinach, tomatoes, red onion and olives. I used naan bread, but any kind of premade flatbread or even pitabread will work well for a crust.

  • Naan bread
  • 2T hummus
  • 1 chopped roma tomato
  • chopped red onion, to taste
  • 5 kalamata olives, sliced in half
  • a handful of baby spinach

Spread hummus over the flatbread and cover with a layer of spinach. Top with chopped tomato, onion and olives. Bake for 20 minutes at 400 degrees and enjoy!

Tapas: Skillet Chickpeas

Let me start by saying that I have gotten VERY into tapas lately. I mean, a socially acceptable reason to eat six different dishes for dinner? It doesn’t get much better than that. So here’s my recreation of Espinacas con Garbanzos.

  • 4 cups fresh spinach
  • 1 can chickpeas
  • 1T olive oil
  • 1t cumin
  • salt & pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced 

Heat the oil and garlic over high heat for two minutes. Add the spinach, chickpeas and cumin to the skillet. Stir constantly until the spinach fully wilts and the chickpeas cook through. Top with salt and pepper. Enjoy on its own, or serve with crusty bread!

Green Goddess Bowl


It’s no surprise that green food is naturally the healthiest (Don’t believe me? Ask Oprah!) but it can be challenging to enough servings throughout the week. So every now and then, I make myself a fit-all-the-green-things-I-can-in-a-bowl dinner.

So, here’s the drill— put some grains in a bowl (quinoa, rice, pasta, cous cous, etc.) then add all the green things in your fridge. Steam fresh veggies, and heat up the frozen ones. Add some sauce (soy sauce, salad dressing, whatever suits your fancy). And that’s it! This recipe changes every time I make it, but here’s what I made tonight:

  • 1 serving quinoa (or other grain)
  • 1/2C frozen peas
  • 1/2 edamame
  • 4 asparagus spears
  • handful of broccoli florets
  • a few kale leaves
  • 1/2 an avocado
  • 1T soy sauce
  • 1t rice vinegar
  • 1t toasted sesame oil

Cook your quinoa on the stove, and in the meantime heat up your frozen veggies. Once the quinoa’s done, set aside, and steam your fresh veggies. Toss everything in a bowl. In a smaller bowl, mix soy sauce, rice vinegar, and toasted sesame oil, then toss everything together. Enjoy!

Turmeric Ginger Tea

For those who don’t know, I live in Boston, and it’s been a freaking cold winter. I’m not going to call it the ‘Polar Vortex’ because that sounds like a bad sci-fi novel. Anyways, I deal with the cold by wearing a coat that makes me look like a marshmallow and drinking LOTS of tea. Specifically, this homemade turmeric ginger tea. If this doesn’t warm you up, I don’t know what will.

  • 1/2t turmeric powder
  • 1/4t ginger powder
  • 1-2t liquid sweetener, like maple syrup, agave, or honey

Mix together the spices and sweetener at the bottom of a mug, forming a paste. Stir in very hot (but not boiling water) until the paste as dissolved. Enjoy!

Note: Alternatively, you can mix the spices in hot water and then add sweetener to taste. But I’ve found they dissolve better using the paste method.

Warm Butternut Salad


I never crave salad in the winter, it’s too cold out for raw food! But adding warm veggies to kale and quinoa are a great way to still get in all your vegetables.

  • 2C steamed kale
  • 1C steamed or roasted butternut squash (fresh or frozen)
  • 1/2C quinoa, cooked
  • pumpkin seeds to taste

Cook a single serving of quinoa (here’s how!) and while that’s on the stove, steam your kale and prepare your squash. I used frozen squash, so I heated it up with water on a stove pan. If you’re using fresh squash, you’ll want to roast it in the oven. Top with pumpkin seeds. Enjoy!

Mexican Polenta Casserole


I can tell this dish is going to become a new staple for me. The ingredients are simple, it has a ton of flavor, is very customizable, and of course is easy to make and super healthy.

  • 1 package of polenta, sliced (my slices were 1/2” thick)
  • 1 can refried beans
  • 1 small jar of salsa (a whole jar isn’t necessary, but I really love salsa)
  • 1C corn (I used frozen)
  • 1 green bell pepper, sliced thin
  • 2 jalapenos, seeded and sliced thin
  • avocado, to garnish

Lay your polenta slices to cover the bottom of a casserole dish, then spread on refried beans and salsa to make the base of your casserole. Then sprinkle with veggies. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Remove from oven, top with avocado and enjoy!

Note: I used corn, green pepper, and jalapenos for my veggies but this part is very customizable! Daiya shreds would also make a great addition.

TCV Lunchbox Week: Thursday


Spicy chickpeas with short grain brown rice.

For the chickpeas:
Whisk together 1T mustard, 1.5T hot sauce and 1T soy sauce. Pour one can of rinsed chickpeas with the sauce into a heated pan. Stir constantly until the chickpeas absorb the sauce. Makes two servings.

For the rice:
Cook brown rice on the stove according to directions on the package. Alternatively, buy precooked brown rice and reheat.

Pack into tupperware and reheat when it’s lunchtime!

TCV Lunchbox Week: Wednesday


Single serve lentil veggie soup.

  • 2 green onions, sliced thin
  • two sticks of celery
  • one medium carrot, or a handful of baby carrots
  • 1t garlic powder
  • 1/4C green lentils (uncooked)
  • 1/2C water
  • 1C veggie broth

Saute the green onions, carrots, celery and garlic powder for five minutes in a thin layer of water, stirring to make sure they don’t stick. Add lentils, water and veggie broth. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer 30-40 minutes until lentils are soft.

TCV Lunchbox Week: Tuesday


Whole wheat wrap with hummus, spring mix, and avocado. Side of plantain chips and carrots.

TCV Lunchbox Week: Monday


Sesame tofu, steamed broccoli and snow peas, brown rice

For the tofu:
Cut half a block of firm tofu into cubes. Heat a pan on high, add tofu, a few tablespoons of water, a tablespoon of soy sauce, a few dashes of rice vinegar, and a teaspoon of toasted sesame oil. Constantly shake and stir pan until water evaporates and tofu turns holden brown.

For the veggies:
Steam one cup of broccoli and a handful of snow peas (can be done on the stove or in the microwave).

For the rice:
Cook brown rice on the stove according to directions on the package. Alternatively, buy precooked brown rice and reheat.

Pack into tupperware and reheat when it’s lunchtime!

Chipotle Sweet Potato Soup


It’s spicy. It’s sweet. It’s got a surprising amount of protein. AND it’s only five ingredients. Say hello to my new favorite recipe y’all.

  • 1C unsweetened, plain almond or soy milk
  • 1C vegetable broth
  • 1 can cannellini (or white kidney/navy) beans, drained
  • 2 medium (or 3 small) sweet potatoes
  • 1T chipotle peppers in adobo sauce

Chop and boil the sweet potatoes. In a blender pour in almond milk, vegetable broth, and drained beans. Drain the sweet potatoes once they’re soft enough to mash, and add to the blender. Slice up your chipotle pepper, and add that to the blender with some of the adobo sauce. Blend everything until creamy, top with avocado if desired, and enjoy!

Note: Chipotle peppers in adobo sauce come in a small can, usually in the ethnic foods/mexican aisle. You almost never use more than one pepper per recipe, so plan lots of chipotle recipes when you buy them. You’ll want to use them all! Chipotle  all day, errday.