Thursday, September 10, 2015

Hi NEW Vegans!

I get asked a lot by new vegans or long time vegetarians that are looking to go vegan, how to go vegan. They are either interested to start gradually or eager to jump right in. I think either is great but I give them the same basic advice when they ask me: 

What's the easiest way to convert to veganism? & What are some advice and tips you would give a new vegan starting out? 

I think the best way if you're going to gradually do it or even jump right in, is to really research veganism. I find that new vegans need to really get their info on everything before making that lifestyle change. You want to make sure when you make this transition, you're doing it the right way and the healthiest way, so you're successful. Get out there and find out what works for you in the product world. If you are going to be a vegan who enjoys making their own cheeses or wants to buy. 

Today's vegans are soooo lucky, they have lots of great options for vegan cheeses: (field roast, Daiya, tofutti, go veggie, follow your heart, vegan gourmet, teese, & miyokos). 

And if you don't have them in your area, you can order online and have a new product shipped right to your door. The same thing goes for vegan meats (Gardein, Field Roast Grain Meat, Sophie's Kitchen - The New Vegan Seafood, Beyond Meat, Boca, Tofurky, Lightlife, Yves). 

Some vegans enjoy them and some do not and that's ok, find what works for you and again, there are a lot of products out there. If you're not into veggie meats, you can stick to: 

  • Legumes (especially chickpeas, adzuki beans, lentils, split peas, and kidney beans)
  • Organic Soy products such as tempeh and tofu (you can also make none soy based tofu as well)
  • Nuts & seeds (most notably cashews, almonds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds & tahini)
  • Whole and enriched grains such as quinoa
  • Organic Vegetables (particularly dark and leafy greens)
  • Whole grains and wheat germ
  • Dried fruits

  • Try, sample, make, move on, and keep looking until you find what you like. 

    And of course, make sure you are getting all your vitamins and minerals. Supplements are available but you can get the majority from foods. Chia (omega3), flax (omega3), nutritional yeast (b12), mushrooms (vitamin D), Dark Greens (calcium & iron), 

    • Microalgae DHA supplements
    • Flaxseed oil or seeds
    • Hempseed oil or seeds 
    • Walnuts
    • Chia 
    (you can find vegan supplements at your local or vegan market if needed)


    Vegan Essentials

    Vegan cuts

    Fake meats 

    Vegan store

    Recipes for homemade meats are everywhere as well and they are easier than you think.

    *Pinterest is your friend!

    And the MOST IMPORTANT: Find support, whether it be close to home with a friend and/or family OR online support groups. You will need that helping hand or shoulder once and a while. Plus the recipe sharing is just a bonus! 

    Hope this helps ❤️


    Thursday, August 20, 2015

    Irresistible Vegan PB & Chocolate Chip Cookies

    Irresistible Vegan PB & Chocolate Chip Cookies
    Peanut butter and chocolate are a classic combination of awesome yumminess. You cannot find a more complimentary combo that is that perfect...yeah yeah PB & Jelly can take a hike here, chocolate kicks your butt any day. So when you take that classic combo and make it into a cookie, your just asking for a hug. This cookie is just love in cookie form and nothing will envelop smiles more for this dessert. Great for kids or adults alike and if you have a potluck or bake sale, you will have the winning treat. 

    This recipe will show you how to make that perfect combo of sweet, salty, crunchy, and ooey gooey goodness. Made into a perfect cookie and baked to the right golden brown and delish. This cookie will help sweeten any day and help put a smile on any face. Serve this cookie as is hot off the cookie sheets or anytime afterwards. Pairs nicely sandwiched or along side vegan ice cream. Store cookies in an air tight container or in a plastic bag. With plenty of cookies to share, you are sure to become a popular person quick...that's if you decide to share. Enjoy! 

    Irresistible Vegan PB & Chocolate Chip Cookies


    -3/4 cup Vegan butter or shortening, softened 
    -1 1/4 cup Brown Sugar
    -3/4 cup organic smooth peanut butter
    -3 Tablespoons Vegan Milk
    -1 Tablespoon pure Vanilla extract
    -2 large "Eggs", Egg replacer powder or The Vegg (prepared as followed on your directions) *Optional 
    -3/4 teaspoon Baking Soda
    -1 teaspoon Salt
    -1 3/4 cups Flour
    -1 6oz package Vegan Chocolate Chips or Chunks
    -1 cup Peanuts (optional)


    Heat oven to 375 Degrees

    Combine vegan butter (shortening), brown sugar, vegan milk, PB, and vanilla in electric mixer, beat at medium speed until blended. Add in your egg substitute and beat in. 

    Combine flour, salt, and baking soda in separate bowl. Once your ingredients are all in separate bowl, add and beat into the vegan butter mixture until blended but not over beaten.

    Stir in vegan chocolate chips and/or nuts (optional). 

    Drop rounded measured cookie dough 3 inches apart onto ungreased baking sheet. For measuring I used a ice cream scoop, depending on your desired cookie size you can use a small or regular size scoop. If you don't have an ice cream scoop use a tablespoon measure or spoon. 

    Bake 15 minutes for a chewy cookies, 20 minutes for a crisp cookie. Cool 2 minutes on baking sheet and then remove cookies to a rack to cool completely. 

    Serve hot off the cookie sheet or cool and serve for dessert, snacks, and/or topped or sandwiched with vegan ice cream. Nothing is wrong when serving this cookie, enjoy!

    Ready to Serve Cookie


    Friday, July 31, 2015

    Vegan Creamy Fire-Roasted Tomato Basil Soup

    Vegan Creamy Fire-Roasted Tomato Basil Soup

    A grilled cheese and tomato soup is a childhood classic and the ultimate comfort food. We ate it at home when are parents made it for us, we were served it at school, it was a go to when we were sick, or even when we were lazy. But what if we could take that childhood classic and make it the best it could be, with a fiery-edge...oh and vegan! BONUS! This recipe takes the classic soup made rich, creamy, vegan and makes it vegan to boot. This recipe will have you running to go get your grilled cheese ready to go along with it. No better pair, yum! You can make this on a cold night, relaxing weekend, or a date night for two. Makes plenty of leftovers and is loaded with lots of veggies and flavor to fool any picky eater. Overall a perfect soup and waiting combo you can enjoy anytime. Top with more fresh basil, more vegan Parmesan and your all set for a blast from the past. Enjoy!

    Vegan Creamy Fire-Roasted Tomato Basil Soup


    -1/2 cup good olive oil
    -1 large chopped organic red onion, chunked
    -3 medium organic 
    carrots, peeled and chunked
    -1 organic fennel bulb, trimmed, cored, and medium-chunks
    -4 organic garlic cloves, diced
    -2 Tablespoons organic tomato paste 
    -2 (28-ounce) can organic fire-roasted crushed tomatoes (Muir Glen Organic)
    -4 cups vegan chicken or vegetable broth (better than bouillon)
    -1 (heaping) cup fresh organic 
    basil leaves
    -1 (heaping) cup fresh organic parsley leaves 
    -1 Tablespoon salt 
    -1 teaspoon Freshly ground black pepper (if you like more pepper, add 1/2tsp more) 
    -1/8 red pepper flakes 
    -3 Tablespoons Nutritional Yeast (Red Star)
    -3 Tablespoons vegan grated Parmesan (Go Veggie Brand)
    -2 cups canned coconut milk (full fat, none sweetened) or your favorite vegan milk

    Soup Directions

    In a food processor, process all your chunked veggies and minced garlic until it is minced or moderately minced. (This soup will be pureed at the end, it doesn't have to be perfect) 

    Processed Veggies (Size)
    Heat the oil in a large stockpot over medium heat. Add the onions, carrots, fennel, and garlic and cook over medium-low heat for 10 minutes, until tender. 

    All the Processed Veggies in Oil
    Sauteed Veggies
    Add both of the crushed tomatoes to the pot along with the vegan chicken stock, basil, 1 tablespoon salt, and 1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons black pepper.
    Tomatoes, Stock, & Basil Added
    Bring the soup to a boil and once it hits a boil lower the heat, allow to simmer covered, for 45 to 60 minutes. Stir the soup occassionally until done.

    Simmering Soup 
    Once the soup has simmered and the veggies have become tender, remove from the heat and either let slightly cool before pureeing in the blender (If you have a blender that can handle hot liquids, puree now). Puree the soup first by itself until it resembles a tomato soup consistency  Then add your coconut milk and Parmesan, blend until combined. Serve out of the blender in bread bowl, top with more basil and vegan Parmesan cheese.  
    Pureed Soup with Coconut Milk

    Thursday, July 16, 2015

    Vegan "Tuna" Macaroni Salad

    During those hot summer months we love to have those go to recipes to enjoy over and over. These recipes keep you light and happy, not weighed down and they can be enjoyed for lunch or dinner. This recipe shows you how to make a classic macaroni salad that we've seen at BBQs for years. Not only is it easy but it makes you wish this vegan summer never ends. With the hearty Mac & vegan tuna paired with sweet peas, the classic flavors blend perfectly. It takes your regular boring macaroni salad and turns it up a notch. We love macaroni salad and its always a favorite at any BBQ, but why not change it up a bit and bring this! Your family and friends are sure to love this new veganized version. Pair it along side your BBQ favs or enjoy it on its own for lunch. Enjoy!

    Vegan "Tuna" Macaroni Salad


    2 cups elbow macaroni (uncooked)
    1 1/2 cups frozen peas, thawed (not cooked)
    1 6oz cans Sophie's Kitchen vegan tuna (drained and crumbled up)
    1 1/2 cup Vegan mayo (Just Mayo is my fav) 
    1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste 
    1/4 pepper
    teaspoon garlic powder
    teaspoon onion powder
    1 Tablespoon fresh parsley, minced 

    *Optional Add in: 
    2 cups Tofu, cubed (small) or any other of the mentioned add ins

    When I was growing up with this salad, it was traditionally always mixed with hardboiled eggs. Now when I have come across some of my favorite summery Mac Salads, they always have those darn eggs in them. How do you match/sub those? There are options. My go to....Tofu! Yes! The texture in the salads matches up soooo well. I've made many a tofu-hater a lover instead. Now if you are still uneasy about tofu, leave it out. Other fantastic add ins, artichoke hearts or hearts of palm. They are yummy subs that may not look like eggs but have a nice texture. One more great add in is chickpeas, they work well and can take on an egg-like quality in many recipes. Now you don't have to add in any egg sub to this recipe, you can leave it out and it's still going to be great.  


    Start by preparing your macaroni, until desired texture according to box directions. When the noodles are cooked, drain and rinse under cold water to cool them down. Once the noodles are cooled to room temp, add them to a large bowl.  

    Add the remaining ingredients, and stir until completely combined.  Cover with plastic wrap and chill in refrigerator for at least 2 hours before serving.  When ready to serve, give it a stir.  If it seems a little dry add 1/4 cup more of mayo, or as much as desired.  Taste and adjust for salt and pepper, depending on your preferences and this bad boy is ready to serve. Pair it along side your BBQ favs or enjoy it on its own for lunch. It's also even better at 1am ...just saying. Enjoy! 


    Thursday, July 2, 2015

    Check out The Comforting a Vegan for all your Vegan 4th of July BBQ & Picnic recipes!

    Check out The Comforting a Vegan for all your Vegan 4th of July BBQ & Picnic recipes! 

    Plenty of Homemade Vegan Burgers, Sides, & Desserts to make your whole family drool! 

    #HappyFourthofJuly #JulyFourth #Vegan #Veganism #Vegans #BBQ #Food #Foods #Recipes #Cookouts #Familyfoods #Foodpic #homemade #Glutenfree #Plantstrong #Plantfood #YesItsVegan #WhatVegansEat #VeganNOMNOMNOM #foodie #Foodgasm #FoodPorn #photooftheday #dessert #share  #VeganBBQ #Veganstrong #vegandesserts #comfortfood #summer

    Monday, June 15, 2015

    Vegan Utica Style Greens

    Vegan Utica Style Greens
    Utica Greens is a regional treasure in upstate NY. Consisting of various pepper combinations escarole, cheese, and variations of Italian meats. A popular dish is best described as "a smoky blend of earth and heat". It should be noted that the dish differs little from traditional Greens & Beans but it's equally as addicting. This recipe shows you how to take the same traditional steps that go into making this regional favorite and transforming it into a vegan favorite everyone can enjoy. These greens are great served along side your favorite main dish or on its own along side some crusty bread. Enjoy! 

    Vegan Utica Style Greens


    -2 Tablespoons olive oil
    -1 large head Organic Romaine Lettuce, chopped 
    -1 (1lb) bag frozen Organic Collard Greens (not traditional, but I love the texture it keeps)
    -3 cloves Garlic, minced
    -2 Tablespoons Vegan Bacon, minced 
    -2 long italian hot peppers, seeded & julienned (optional) 
    -1 cup Vegan Chicken Broth (or vegetable broth)
    -1/2 cup Vegan Butter Crackers, pulverized (your favorite brand)
    -1/4 cup Vegan 'Go Veggie' Parmesan Cheese 
    -Salt & Freshly Ground Black Pepper, to taste


    1. To begin, clean and rinse your romaine. Once it's ready, dry and chop in large pieces.
    2. Prep your pan for the greens. Place olive oil in a saute pan and heat. Add chopped garlic and vegan bacon and cook for 2 minutes on a medium to medium-high heat. Do not burn garlic, you want it to be fragrant but not brown.
    3. *At this point if you are using peppers, Add seeded peppers and cook another minute or so. I like my greens without today, so make it your own and add what you like. 
    4. Next, Add the Collard Greens and Romaine to the pan with your broth. Stir to coat and cover with a lid to steam. Reduce your heat to low and let it cook for 10-15 minutes until it wilts down. 
    5. Once your greens have wilted down and have a nice cooked but not mushy texture, you are ready to add the rest of your ingredients. Gradually add the bread crumbs and vegan cheese, tossing gently until blended. Lastly, taste for final salt and pepper seasoning. Serve along side your favorite main dish or on its own, even better the next day and scrumptious cold out if he fridge...shhh. Enjoy!  


    Friday, March 6, 2015

    Organic Spicy Peanut Sauce

    Do you ever get bored with your everyday foods? That same old, same old. Well I know I do and from time to time I like to switch it up and enjoy something different. I know that everyday breakfast, lunch, and dinner we enjoy over and over again is yummy but why limit your taste buds. Break away from that Ho-hum, you can make it in your sleep meal. This recipe shows you how to make a extremely easy and oh so turned up sauce. And not just any sauce, a spicy peanut sauce that will knock your socks off. With these few ingredients, you can make a sauce that can be used on any veggie, legume, or vegan meats. Works great as a marinade or a dipping sauce. I can honestly say (no judgement) that I ate some with a spoon...hey I said no judgement. Give it a try and let me know what you think, no judgement over here, grab a spoon and give it a try. Enjoy!  

    Organic Spicy Peanut Sauce

    1/2 cup creamy organic peanut butter
    1/4 cup hot water
    2 Tablespoons organic miso paste
    2 Tablespoons organic brown sugar
    1 Tablespoon Sriracha
    1 Tablespoon organic soy sauce
    1 Tablespoon rice wine vinegar
    1 Tablespoon freshly squeezed organic lemon juice
    1 teaspoon organic garlic, minced
    1/8 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes (Optional, if you prefer it less spicy) 
    2 organic scallions, dinced
    Salt & Freshly Ground Black Pepper, to taste
    This is the easiest recipe EVER, you ready? ...put everything in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth and creamy. That's it! You can place it in the fridge and let it settle. The longer it sits in the fridge, the better it gets. You can serve it on the side (hot or cold) for dipping, use it for marinating, or stir I'm your favorite veggies, beans, vegan meat, etc. There is no wrong way to enjoy this tasty sauce. Enjoy!