- Food and Cooking
Vegan Recipes for Picky Eaters
An introduction on vegan dietVegan diet means eliminating the use all animal meat and animal products including flesh, eggs, and milk. Vegans eat only plant-derived foods. Also ingredients such as tofu, tempeh, and seitan are widely used in vegan cuisine as well as meat like dishes made of soy or gluten like veggie burgers or vegetarian sausage.
If going vegan is your choice you don't have to worry about food choices. There is wide varieties of meals you can choose from. Here we will suggest many delicious vegan recipes and recommend some great cookbooks.
According to the American Dietetic Association's 2009 Position Paper on Vegetarian Diets, vegan diets "are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and may provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases." A healthy vegan diet helps reduce your risk of heart disease, cancer, obesity, and diabetes.
ref. Winston J. Craig, Ann Reed Mangels, "Position of the American Dietetic Association: Vegetarian Diets" Journal of the American Dietetic Association, July 2009.
Why go Vegan?
Other than moral or environmental reasons, many people decide to go on vegan diet purely for its health benefits.
Balanced vegan diet (known as plant-balanced diet) implies adherence to recommendations regarding healthy diet such as eating large amounts of fruits and vegetables, avoiding foods that contain cholesterol and high saturated fat.
Balanced vegan diet is always rich in vitamins, antioxidants and dietary fiber. It reduces the risk of developing diabetes, heart disease, strokes and cancer. If well planned, plant-balanced diet is suitable for all age groups in different periods of life.
Vegans need to plan their diet to make sure it includes all the essential nutrients. It is recommended for vegans to use dietary supplements and professional consultation to meet dietary needs.
The essential dietary requirements, which could be missing from a vegan diet if it isn't carefully planned, include:
* Minerals (including iron, calcium and zinc)
* Vitamin B12
* Vitamin D
The American Dietetic Association reports that vegetarians and vegans have lower body mass indexes, blood pressure and cholesterol levels than non vegetarians do. They also report decreased rates of type 2 diabetes, colon cancer, prostate cancer, hypertension and heart disease [source: ADA].
Vegan Recipe of the Day - Sprouted buckwheat coconut waffles with kabocha coconut sauce
* a delicious gluten-free, allergy-friendly, whole foods recipe
Makes approximately (5) 5-inch square waffles and 2 cups of sauce
* 3/4 c whole dry buckwheat groats
* 1/4 c whole dry amaranth grain
* 2 T shredded coconut
* 2 T coconut flour
* 2 T melted coconut oil
* 1 T ground flax seed
* water to cover soaked grains + 1/2 c
* 1 tsp vanilla extract (alcohol and gluten free)
* pinch cardamom
* stevia (or agave nectar) to taste
* 1/2 tsp salt
* 1 tsp baking powder
* 1/4 tsp vitamin c crystals (optional, helps with leavening)
Directions1. Place buckwheat and amaranth to soak in water overnight or for at least 5-6 hours.
2. Drain grains well in a very fine sieve - amaranth is very small and likes to escape. If you don't have a fine sieve, just try dumping out as much of water as you can, or use something fine and meshy like cheesecloth.
3. Transfer to a blender, or if using an immersion blender, a large cup or bowl.
4. Level grains, and add just enough fresh water to cover. Add the coconut, coconut flour, salt, cardamom, baking powder, vitamin c crystals (if using), melted coconut oil, flax, vanilla, agave and stevia, and 1/4 c of the additional water. Blend well. Coconut flour absorbs liquid like crazy - so, if necessary, add the additional 1/4 c of water to make a thick, but still spoonable, batter. Let sit for 5-10 minutes for flax to absorb some of the liquid. If it seems too thick, don't hesitate to add a little extra water.
5. Heat up waffle iron, greasing lightly with coconut oil. When ready, fill waffle iron with batter. Close iron and bake as directed in waffle iron user's manual, until waffle stops steaming and starts to smell done. I found that about 8 minutes in my waffle iron yielded a well cooked waffle that had a beautiful golden color and seemingly impossible crispy crust.
6. Remove from iron and let cool a minute or two on a rack, the waffle will continue to crisp up.
Kabocha coconut sauce
* 1 c organic lite coconut milk
* 1 1/2 c Kabocha squash, peeled and diced (or other dense, sweet squash like Hubbard or Buttercup)
optional, if more sweetness is desired: pinch stevia - or if sugar isn't an issue for you use agave or a little maple syrup (the maple would be really good!)
* optional: fresh or dried ginger
* optional: 1 T flaxseed oil
Directions1. Steam Kabocha until soft, or microwave in a covered dish with a little water for 5 minutes until tender.
2. In a blender or with an immersion blender, mix coconut milk and cooked squash until smooth, adding more coconut milk as necessary to reach desired consistency.
3. If desired, add a pinch or stevia or a squirt of agave to taste, some fresh or dried ginger for added kick, or a tablespoon of flax oil.
4. Serve warm over waffles! Freeze leftovers to use later.
- 3 cups of pumpkin (or other winter squash) peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
- extra-virgin olive oil
- fine grain sea salt
- 12 tiny red onions or shallots peeled (OR 3 medium red onions peeled and quartered)
- 2 cups cooked wild rice
- 1/3 cup sunflower seeds
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 2 tablespoons warm water
- 1/2 cup cilantro finely chopped
- Preheat oven to 375. Toss the pumpkin in a generous splash of olive oil along with a couple pinches of salt, and turn out onto a baking sheet. At the same time, toss the onions with a bit of olive oil, sprinkle with salt, and turn out onto a separate baking sheet. Roast both for about 45 minutes, or until squash is brown and caramelized. The same goes for the onions, they should be deeply colored, caramelized, and soft throughout by the time they are done roasting. You'll need to flip both the squash and onion pieces once or twice along the way - so it's not just one side that is browning.
- In the meantime, make the dressing. With a hand blender or food processor puree the sunflower seeds, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and honey until creamy. You may need to add a few tablespoons of warm water to thin the dressing a bit. Stir in the cilantro, saving just a bit to garnish the final plate later. Taste and adjust seasonings (or flavors) to your liking - I usually need to add a touch more salt with this dressing.
- In a large bowl, toss the wild rice with a large dollop of the dressing. Add the onions, gently toss just once or twice. Turn the rice and onions out onto a platter and top with the roasted squash (I'll very gently toss with my hands here to disperse the pumpkin a bit). Finish with another drizzle of dressing and any remaining chopped cilantro.
Find great vegan cookbooks
Why go vegan?
Surveys consistently show overwhelming evidence that eating more fruits, vegetables and whole grains, improves energy, health and prolongs life. At the same time, consumption of meat contributes to the whole range of health problems.
Delicious Vegan Recipes
The most frequently asked question about the vegan diet is:
What would you eat?There are many delicious vegan recipes. Indian and Chinese dishes contain an abundance of vegan recipes, spaghetti, sandwiches, pasta, soups and various desserts. You shouldn't be a genius in the kitchen to prepare vegan meals. Most of them are prepared fast and easy.
Will I miss pizza, chocolate, cheese, ice cream, cake?This is perhaps the main problem that people face when moving from standard vegan diet. On the market there are vegan versions and alternatives for most of the previously consummated products. You will not be giving up your favorite food. You'll simply modify it.
- Prep time: 15 min
- Cook time: 10 min
- Ready in: 25 min
- Yields: 4 pieces
Spinach and Mushroom Pizza Pockets Without Cheese - Vegan Italian Recipe
- 1 13.8 Oz Refrigerated Vegan Pizza Crust
- 4 Finely Chopped Garlic
- 4 Cups Fresh Baby Spinach Leaves
- 8 Slices Onion
- 4 Oz Sliced White Button/Cremini Mushroom
- 2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- To Taste Salt And Pepper
- Preheat oven to 425F (220C) for 15 minutes. Grease a baking sheet. Unroll the dough on the prepared baking sheet and adjust it to fit the sheet. Cut it into 4 rectangles.
- Sprinkle the chopped garlic evenly over the rectangles. Top each rectangle with 1 cup of spinach, 2 onion slices or 1/4th of the onion strips and 1/4 of the thinly sliced mushrooms. Drizzle with 1/2 tablespoon of oil on each rectangle and sprinkle salt and pepper as per your taste.
- Now roll each rectangle either horizontally or vertically whichever seems easy for you and pinch the ends to close the pockets.
- Bake on the middle rack for 10-12 minutes or until it is golden brown.
- Find this and many more tasty recipes at http://www.egglesscooking.com
Prep Time: 15 min
Total Time: 1h 10 min
Serves: 12 slices
Vegan Banana Bread
- 2 cups All Purpose Flour
- 1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda
- 1/2 teaspoon Salt
- 1/4 teaspoon Allspice ground
- 1/2 cup Margarine
- at room temperature (Becel Vegan Spread)
- 1/2 cup Brown Sugar
- 1/2 cup White Sugar
- 3 Bananas medium sized mashed well
- 1/4 cup Non Dairy Milk (Almond)
- 1 teaspoon Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- 1/2 cup Walnuts chopped
- Combine together the non dairy milk and apple cider vinegar; set aside.
- Preheat the oven at 350F/180C for 15 minutes. Line an 8Ã—4 inch loaf pan with parchment paper and lightly grease it with non stick cooking spray.
- In a large combine together the flour, baking soda, salt and spice.
- In another bowl, cream together the margarine and sugars. Then add the bananas, vanilla and milk-vinegar mixture.
- Add the wet ingredients to the flour mixture. Mix in the nuts and stir until just combined.
- Pour the batter in the prepared loaf pan and bake for about 60-70 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the bread comes out clean. Mine was done shortly after 60 minutes.
- Remove the pan from the oven and place it on a cooling rack for about 15 minutes. Then transfer the bread from the pan to the rack and let it cool completely before slicing (preferably overnight).
Vegan Chocolate Cupcake - vegan cupcake
- 1 cup soy milk
- 1 teaspoon vinegar
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup canola oil
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1 cup flour
- 1/3 cup cocoa powder
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and get your cupcake liners all set up. In a large mixing bowl, stir together the soy milk, vinegar, sugar, canola oil and vanilla. In a separate bowl, mix the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt. After that mix all the ingredients together, and stir until there are no more lumps. Pour the batter into the cupcake liners. Make sure they are no more than 3/4 full. Bake about 18-20 minutes. To test if they are ready insert toothpick into the center and see if it comes out clean. If not bake for a few more minutes.
- Allow the cupcakes to cool and then frost with your favorite vegan icing.
- I found this great recipe at http://www.chow.com
Shredded Brussel Sprouts with Apples and Pinenuts (Tofu optional) - Great Vegan Salad
- 1 large crisp apple cut into bite-sized wedges
- 1 lemon juice only4 ounces extra-firm tofu or already cooked tofu (optional)
- a couple pinches of fine-grain sea salt
- a couple splashes of olive oil
- 2 medium cloves garlic minced
- a scant tablespoon of maple syrup
- 1/3 cup pine nuts toasted and chopped
- 12 ounces (3/4 pound) brussels sprouts washed and cut into 1/8-inch wide ribbons
- Soak the apples in a bowl filled with water and the juice of 3/4 of the lemon.Cook the tofu in large hot skillet with a bit of salt and a splash of oil. Saute until golden, about 4 minutes. (Alternatively you can roast the tofu on a sprayed baking sheet for 30 minutes at 450, turning once). Stir in the garlic, wait a few seconds, now stir in the maple syrup, and cook another 30 seconds or so. Drain the apples, and add them to the skillet, cooking for another minute. Scrape the apple and tofu mixture out onto a plate and set aside while you cook the brussels sprouts.
- In the same pan, add a little more oil, another pinch of salt, and increase the heat up to medium-high. When the pan is nice and hot stir in the shredded brussels sprouts. (addition: squeeze in the last quarter of the lemon). Cook for 2 - 3 minutes, stirring a couple times (but not too often) until you get some golden bits, and the rest of the sprouts are bright and delicious.
- Stir the apple mixture back into the skillet alongside the brussels sprouts 1/2 of the pine nuts - gently stir to combine. Remove from heat and enjoy immediately sprinkled with the remaining pine nuts (brussel sprouts aren't as good when they sit around for a while!).
Benefits of vegan diet
Well-planned vegan diets have been found to offer protection against many degenerative conditions, including heart disease.
Join the debate
Would you consider becoming a vegan?