Fave Foods from the Trendy Vegan! December 12 2013

Moving to a plant-based diet can work wonders for your health and well-being.  And if you think a vegetarian food is dull, think again!  One of our favorite vegans Yonni Wattenmaker shares her imaginative & tasty food faves...

Favorite Cereal: Body Fuel Nutritionals Crunch.  I’m the creator of the recipe for this vegan, no gluten-added cereal.  Nuts, seeds, oats and a little touch of sweetness combine to make a well-balanced breakfast or snack.  I eat it as is or just add a bit of almond milk.  You can learn more about it at www.bodyfuelnutritionals.com (but bear with the website as it’s under construction!)

Favorite Breakfast That Isn’t Cereal: Banana with Nut Butter. I always have some sort of nut butter in my pantry at home and my snack drawer at work.  Peanut, almond, cashew, sunflower – I love them all.  After a workout, I love a tablespoon spread on a banana to go along with my coffee.

Favorite Prepared Food: Whole Foods Vegan Chicken Salad. When I’m running late to work and want to grab a quick lunch, I stop into my local Whole Fods and spend $3 on a little container of this vegan mock-chicken salad with tarragon and a touch of black pepper.  The tiny serving is more filling than you’d think!

Favorite Healthy Fat:  Avocado I eat avocado almost every day.  I’ll be honest, the fat content used to scare me, but I’m over it.  I dice it into salad, add it to a hummus wrap, put it on a bagel with cucumber slices and tomato and, of course, mash it into a fabulous guacamole. 

Favorite Thing To Eat With Avocado: Corn Tortilla Chips.  Again, you can easily find these to be both vegan and gluten-free and there are so many varieties.  They are my go-to snack with some of my famous guacamole, or with a great salsa (or even on their own!)  Just watch the ingredients – some have hidden milk products when they flavor the chips so read the labels carefully.

Favorite Salad Ingredients: Sundried Tomato and Beans. Take any lettuce – I prefer romaine and kale – throw in some sun-dried tomato (I choose the ones without oil) and some beans – garbanzo, black, cannelini – add some vinegar or dijon mustard, and your favorite oil and you have a perfect, well-rounded meal.  Sweet, savory, low fat and packed with nutrients.

Favorite Protein: Lentils. Enjoy these cold or hot, in scrambled tofu at breakfast over a salad for lunch, in a soup for dinner.  They boast protein and fiber and play well with others, like onions, carrots, celery, mushrooms and more!

Favorite Veggie: Brussel Sprouts.  I know – they might be the most hated of the vegetables, but they are so misunderstood!  Steam them and shred them and mix them with carmelized shallots and slivered toasted almonds, or roast them with a little extra virgin olive oil, kosher salt and a drizzle of maple syrup.  It’s like candy – leafy candy, but it’s true!

Favorite Cracker: Kame Sesame Crackers.  Gluten-free, low fat, low calorie and super crunchy.  Eat them alone, with some spreadable cheese or hummus or babaganoush. Seriously – I think there are 16 crackers to a pretty guilt-free serving!

Favorite Cheese to Go On That Cracker:  Daiya.  It’s hard to find a good vegan cheese but I think Daiya does pretty well.  I love their shredded cheddar in my mac ‘n cheese or atop my bean chili, and their sliced provolone isn’t too shabby on rosemary & olive oil crackers.

For more on Yonni, we invite you to visit The Trendy Vegan online and follow her on Twitter...