Back at it with another recent vegan eats post! Amidst the season of excessive school work, I’m delaying some more research-intensive content since right now my brain is so overwhelmed I found myself sitting on the futon staring at the ceiling debating whether to continue working or just go to bed the past two nights.
To give you any sort of scope of how incredibly boring I am these days, upon reflecting on my weekend, I can safety say the most invigorating thing I did was impulsively add an avocado to my cart at Trader Joe’s after overhearing someone mention avocado toast and being stricken with an instant craving. It felt so bold and whimsical!
This weekend I’ve also been trying to secure an apartment for next fall (fingers crossed!) and have been relying on my compression braces to deal with carpal tunnel symptoms from excessive typing.
Wild weekend, I know. Today is actually exciting because it’s Millie’s birthday! So we are going to celebrate HARD (which I will recap in next week’s post). Here’s a photo from her first birthday party. I’m not crying, you are!
Anyways, if you want some more nitty-gritty nutrition or climate reads, stay tuned or search the ‘nutrition’ or ‘climate’ tabs, but or for now, simply enjoy this recent vegan eats roundup in the meantime!
Giant Salads with Banza and Oodles of Nutritional Yeast
When the weather starts to turn warm, I crave all things FRESH, including giant salads.The key to a meal-worthy salad in my books is including a variety of textures, flavors and including all three macronutrients (carbs, fat, and protein).
This meal reflects a version of something I make often: leftover roasted veggies (in this case, purple sweet potatoes, yay carbs), organic mixed greens (I buy the family-sized for $4.49 every week at ShopRite during salad phases and plow through them), frozen thawed peas for a pop of freshness, flavor, protein and fiber, hemp hearts for fat, protein and omega-3s, raw cashews for more fat, protein, flavor and crunch, and cold Banza because pasta on salads = <3. I covered the whole thing with some Panera dressing I had in m fridge + oodles upon oodles of nutritional yeast.
If you haven’t put nutritional yeast on salads, you must give it a whirl. It somehow amplifies the entire experience exponentially. Please try it and thank me later. ;-).
Also, I cooked my noodles in the microwave and quickly cooled them in the fridge. Yes, I often cook noodles in the microwave. That’s what living in apartments in NYC with no working stove/oven for many years gives you – microwave and toaster oven skills galore. Some people asked me about this, and I could totally write a post/make a quick video tutorial. Let me know if you’re interested!
My building had a surprise resident-appreciation breakfast the other morning, which was nice. On my way out, I grabbed a sesame bagel and filled a Pyrex container with fruit salad (shout out to my EHS department for always training me to BYOTupperware).
I adore fruit salad and for some reason it is such a treat to me. Maybe it’s because as a solo-living human I never buy all the ingredients to make it myself, so it’s novel. Or maybe it’s because it reminds me of staying in a hotel with continental breakfast, which is my favorite thing in the universe. Either way, when it comes to fruit salad, I’m always excited.
I go through phases where I want to just eat ALL OF THE FRUIT. This spring weather shift has made me want freshness at every meal and snack! That means oodles of fresh produce. I recognize that being able to consume fresh produce regularly is a privilege. Shout out to ShopRite for having organic pink lady apples at $1.49/ pound as their regular non-sale price. I don’t know how they do it, but I am here for it.
Also, a lot of people express concern over how much fruit I eat. I do eat a lot of fruit, but typically it’s not more 3-4 servings a day. If you’re interested in a post about if you can ‘eat too much fruit,’ comment below or DM me on Insta.
Amy’s Roasted Veggie Cheese-less Pizza
I talked about this for like an hour on my instagram stories (sorry I’m so annoying), but I absolutely, positively adore Amy’s Roasted Vegetable frozen pizza! It is the best frozen pizza I’ve ever graced my tastebuds with. Heck – it’s one of the best pizzas ever. Amy’s just gets it. They do things right. I have always loved them and am so happy their food exists!
When I was growing and dancing a zillion hours a week I used to eat one every day after school as a snack so the taste is so nostalgic to me. I feel like 50% of my body was, like, built off this pizza. I don’t buy them very often because I straight up just rarely buy frozen pizzas these days, but I had a coupon and the stars alined and I got one recently enjoyed it this weekend.
As I’m not growing and tend to snack literally all day when I sit at home and do homework, I didn’t feel the need to eat an entire pizza as a snack, but rather cut it in half while still frozen and enjoyed it over two nights, both times with salads and veggies.
On Friday I topped the pizza with buffalo sauce and nutritional yeast and it frickin’ delicious. The second night (Saturday), I added avocado on top, and it was SUCH a good move! It may sound kind of weird, but the pizza is cheese-less and just covered in the most delicious roasted pepper sauce and roasted veggies, and adding the avo made the whole thing almost like a fancy avocado toast. YUM.
Nugo Mint Chocolate Bar:
Now, I’m not a big chocolate mint person. Thin mints aside, chocolate mint mash-ups usually aren’t my thing. For some reason, I associate most mint flavors with toothpaste so eating sweet mint foods confused my tastebuds. But I went to buy a Nugo chocolate coconut bar and accidentally bought this flavor instead (side note: anyone do this frequently? I need to pay attention when I shop, but I was in a rush…) Anyways, it was a happy accident! This tasted EXACTLY like a Thin Mint! I don’t buy these bars often because bars can be expensive, but I do like to keep a couple in my backpack for hanger emergencies, and this was definitely a good treat.
A note on bars: as I just mentioned, I keep these on hand for hanger emergencies. I ate this leaving class last Tuesday because even though I was heading home I had a call scheduled at 5:30 and knew I couldn’t eat for a couple hours. With the carbs, fat, and protein in the bar, it did the trick in this situation.
But I often hear people call things like this ‘meal replacer.’ Personally I don’t suggest replacing meals with bars. Everyone is different, but for most people ~200 calories is not a meal. It’s a perfect fun snack or can help you hold over your hunger for a couple hours, but meals should ideally be food and more of it when possible!
Peanut Butter on English Muffins
So simple, SO good. Worth documenting again since I eat it so frequently. Also, yes I add that much nut butter some days (I believe this was vanilla almond butter) cause some days I’m hungry as can be and have literally zero breaks from 8:30am-4 and need fuel fast! So lots of peanut or nut butter helps fill me up quick and for a long period of time 👍.
Trader Joe’s Green Dragon Sauce
Okay so this isn’t food. It’s a condiment. But it’s worth mentioning cause it’s so frickin’ good.
I biked to Hoboken to pick some up (along with a few other Trader Joe’s-specific finds) on Saturday. Such a good sauce. Highly recommend on literally anything -tofu, stir-fries, pizza, etc. Yum!
PS – I have a highlights tab on my Insta page with my “TJs Vegan Favs!”
So wholesome. Recipe is here!
I like to make big batches and freeze them, then heat one up every morning with some nut butter + bananas. Yum.
English muffins with Baked Tofu + Chao Tomato Cayenne Cheese
Terrible photo, delicious late-night snack. Kind of like an Egg McMuffin? But vegan. Delicious with Green Dragon (see above). Might work on a more refined version of this concept with better photos for a future recipe post.
Also, def #notspon, but Chao is definitely some of the best vegan cheese out there, as far as I’m concerned.
There are so many new ones on the market! I keep buying new brands/flavors when they go on sale at ShopRite for $1. I’ll continue testing them and maybe do a full review of all the ones I’ve tried.
And that’s it for now. Not too much exciting stuff these days. My friend is visiting next weekend so maybe my I will have more exciting stuff to share, and I’ll also recap Millie’s birthday celebration in that post. Until then, I’ll be subsiding off mite peanut butter on carbs, fruits, veggies, chocolate, and other boring stuff.
Have a nice week!