SO Delicious? Oh no, it isn’t!

In the spirit of keeping it real on the vegan journey, I need to vent for a moment about non-dairy creamers. SO Delicious just isn’t. Barely better than black coffee. Then there’s Califia, which looks sexy but doesn’t deliver. 

(This photo courtesy of Google Images.)

Even worse! Equivalent to black coffee with a hint of sugar…which doesn’t make it better, because I would never add sugar to coffee. (Yep, I’m odd that way.)

CoffeeMate tastes better (really), but the oil and chemical quotient make it a non-contender. 

I’m about to convert to being a black-coffee drinker, because I don’t like poor substitutes. I suppose that’s a testament to some of the recipes, because if it isn’t palatable, I’m not interested. 

If you know of a true contender in the creamer race, please post it in the comments. Requirements:

  • Gives coffee better than a hint of color
  • Isn’t sweet
  • Contains mostly natural ingredients 
  • Isn’t primarily oil-based

Go! And thank you…


Smart choices when time and energy fail

Sometimes, professional and family life take the energy that’s available and there’s just nothing left. When that happens to me, I care less about variety and more about dependability in my diet. I don’t want to think about whether I’ll have a healthy lunch the next day or what I will have. I just want to know that the healthy lunch is there. I don’t know about your hunger patterns, but I am hungriest at lunchtime, and usually before what normal people consider lunchtime. If I don’t have something healthy available for lunch, I will be most tempted to blow it in a big way. Today’s post addresses that issue. I need lunch for the next four days, and I don’t care that it will be the same lunch. I’m just happy to have lunch. If I really cared about variety, I would freeze half of these lunches and swap in variety. This week, I am supremely grateful to have lunches ready and planned.  

Yes, there are only four. Clearly, I didn’t plan so well for today, but boy, do I have it covered for the rest of the week!

These are variations on rice bowls from The Plantpower Way. Today, the base is short grain brown rice. 

The next layer includes baby Bella mushrooms, dinosaur kale, and microwaved sweet potato. We could start an argument over microwaving the potato, but let’s skip it for today.


  The top layer includes aduki beans… a first for me, and Asian dressing from the book. Why Asian dressing? Just because I wanted to try it out and I had the ingredients. I could’ve just as easily topped it off with some tamari or lemon juice.
 The joy? Knowing that I will have a healthy lunch for the remainder of the week and not having to think about it at all.

Best wishes in your healthy eating journey this week and beyond!

One Bowls – The Plantpower Way

One bowls…a foundational dish of The Plantpower Way, and a recipe…of sorts…that says, “I can do this!”  Think mix and match…beans, grains, greens, and various add-ons. The trump card that raises these bowls from nutrition to cuisine is the addition of one of Julie Piatt’s signature sauces.  Tonight’s was “Tahini Green Sauce, ” and finished the bowls like so:

We’re fans…big time. See the book for the myriad of possibilities, but the first of our many “one bowls” included quinoa, seasoned kidney beans, broccoli, sweet potato, and farmer’s market fermented kraut (probiotics…long live the gut!). Try it! This one will be a weeknight winner. 

Vegan Nachos…The Plantpower Way

Photo fail! With recipe success. First time trying cashew “cheese,” which will henceforth be referred to as cashew sauce. 

This is the kind of photo that happens when you care far more about eating than blogging…and half way through there’s an “Oh, yeah…” moment. Keeping it real. 

Pronounced delicious by mother and son alike. We both decided that cashew “cheese” isn’t cheese and rather than thinking of it as a substitute, we will instead give it credit for the sauce that it is…and acknowledge that it does a beautiful job standing in for cheese in nachos. 

Best vegan nachos yet…better than Daiya shreds (sorry, but it’s true). Thank you, Julie Piatt, for your recipe and inspiration. 

Trying recipes from The Plantpower Way

Trying recipes from a new cookbook is a process, and sometimes there’s a bit of trial and error involved. In my last post I mentioned that I’m going to try to work my way through The Plantpower Way, and I’ve decided to blog the journey. While I won’t print the recipe…that’s  just wrong when you can buy this book for $23 and get more than your money’s  worth… I will make some notes about the process. Today’s recipe is almond pesto with gluten-free pasta, and I will definitely be making it again!

The foundation is, of course, almond pesto. I’ve never done this before…but it wasn’t difficult. 

Note the open cookbook in the background…and I’ll just say again, what a joy of a book! 😀

The finished pasta includes bell pepper (it should have been red, but I needed to use an orange one in the fridge, and you know I use what I have), broccoli, and toasted pumpkin seeds, which bring on the wow factor. 

Delicious…different…and completely a success based on the fact that after eating it I felt great, not bloated or lethargic. That’s what whole foods do!

Next time I may thin the pesto more to make it better for pasta sauce. It starts thick and can be thinned depending on use as a spread or sauce. No other modifications, and there will be a next time. For now, at least there’s leftovers.