8 Month Mark of Being Vegan

Heyyyyyy! So July 13th we hit our 8 month mark of being vegan and its been amazing! The video is a little lengthy (so sorry, I promise next time to keep it short and sweet)! But just wanted to share all my finds with y’all and answer any questions I got. I have also included pictures of this months progress and I include a few from the first month of being vegan. I wanted to show how easy it is to get into the normalcy of buying for convenience rather than putting the time in and doing it the healthier way. So this week I promised instead of buying my nut milks and cheeses that I was going to start making my own again, always if not at least way more often than not!

It has been super easy to remain vegan (and no I have not had any slip ups, nor have I had any cravings). After a little while, and knowing what you like and what to look for in your products, you start to develop your rhythm and find your favorite brands so grocery shopping soon becomes a breeze. The only time I struggle is when the bread we get is sold out or not at a store we are at when out of town, but that has been the only time consuming thing. Breads are hard (trying to cut them out and only use sprouted grain breads, but the kids like their peanut butter and agave sandwiches) because so many now a days contain sooooooooo much shit in them! Sugars (in all forms) acids and bird feathers! So the bread that I love to get has only natural and organic products and nothing in it I cannot pronounce. Aside from that if you put the effort in, in the beginning things will start to get easier and it will be like grocery shopping you used to do. I also recommend doing store pick up or delivery if you have it. So many places offer it now that all you have to do is go online, fill your shopping cart with your list and then you can do curb side pick up in a matter of an hour or two. This helps standing in the store to eliminate animal derived products (you can just search if it is vegan right online) and also helps you to not buy stuff that isn’t on your list.

As for going out to eat, that has become much more simple as well. Vegan places and options are popping up more and more. So many places now offer vegan dishes for us to enjoy. My husband and I ate at the Melting Pot for our anniversary and it was a delicious! They have a vegan 4 course meal starting with melted vegan cheese and fruits and veggies for dipping, followed by a refreshing salad, a main course with a vegan sauce to cook your tofu and vegetables in and an arrangement of dipping sauces, and finished off with a yummy vegan chocolate with fruit and nuts. Mellow mushroom has vegan cheese, tofu, and temphe. Your Pie also has vegan cheese and an abundant amount of veggies to make your own pizza, as well as a dairy free sorbet. If you are going out of town or a theme park, check ahead of time that way you are well prepared. We always just bring our own food to the hotel or wherever we are staying to make it easier, and to save money rather than eating out every day.

I have also decided to try to eat more raw during the week. Yesterday my family and I ate completely raw the whole day. I talk about this in the video,  but eating raw 60-80 percent of the time can really boost your mood, energy, and health! So now that I have this vegan thing down, I am going for a challenge and I will let you know and include you, as always in the process!

Again thank you all for your continued love and support! Keep in touch and keep those comments and questions coming! I live to know more about you amazing people out there!

XOXO

Erica

http://www.deitiesofheath.com

http://www.deitiesofhealth@gmail.com

http://www.instagram.com/fitamerica55

http://www.twitter.com/byrnerica

YouTube Dieties of Health

First two pictures are normal and not flexed.

Here are pictures from the first month of being vegan. Note the first month of being vegan when I was eating cleaner and not getting processed vegan food, I was more lean and muscular. Diet counts for about 80% of your physique!

Raw Carrot Soup

If you are wanting a nutritious and delicious meal that takes 5 minutes to make, then look no more! I made this yummy raw carrot soup last night and it was super refreshing, especially in this humid Georgia summer month! For the soup you will need 6 medium carrots, 2/3 cup raw almond milk (or you could use your fave plant milk, and if you don’t have raw used your store bought), a handful or two of fresh parsley, and salt, pepper, garlic, and cumin to taste.

Now to make, just add it all in a food processor or blender and blend until well blended! Add about 1 1/2 Cups of boiled water, give it one more pulse or two to mix and then serve in warm bowls (pop the bowls in the microwave if you would like to keep the soup warmer for longer). Garnish with a drizzle of your plant milk and some parsley. Enjoy!

XOXO

Erica

http://www.deitiesofhealth.com

deitiesofhealth@gmail.com

http://www.instagram.com/fitamerica55

http://www.twitter.com/byrnerica

YouTube Deities of Health

 

Walnut Tacos

Hey y’all!!! So I have been getting a lot of questions on how to make the walnut tacos, and have been meaning to post it! Sorry!!! So let me just say, this is probably the easiest meal you can make! Like super easy, and it tastes like you were in the kitchen forever. A few things first… you can make the consistency of these tacos chunky or fine. I make mine more fine because I like that they will stay in place and when they are in a dough like mixture, they are perfect not only for tacos, but for also making nut burgers. If you prefer to have a little more crunch, just pulse the nuts a couple times, then add your liquid and spices, and pulse a little more.

Here is how I made this version: About three cups of walnuts (seriously just eyeball this, you can always have leftovers), 1tbs (or so) of olive oil, squeeze of a fresh lemon (or you can just use lemon juice), garlic; braggs BCAA (or soy sauce); pepper to taste. Blend the walnuts first to almost the consistency you want, add all of your liquids and spices and continue to blend until mixed. The olive oil and lemon juice will make the walnuts almost paste like (which is why this could be perfect for burgers…yes the paste doesn’t look very pretty but I promise its so yummy), so its easy to spoon in your tortillas. I placed mine in the air fryer for literally 3 minutes and they were crispy and delicious (don’t have an air fryer? Just pop them in the oven, or microwave for like 30-60 seconds).

These are great because the possibilities are endless! I made another version with lime juice and peppers with salsa and they were my favorite. So, let your imagination run wild with these! Don’t be afraid to really test your taste limits! Don’t forget to share what you put in your tacos! These will be a family fave! Enjoy!

XOXO

Erica

http://www.deitiesofhealth.com

deitiesofhealth@gmail.com

http://www.instagram.com/fitamerica55

http://www.twitter.com/byrnerica

YouTube Deities Of Health

 

Grove Collaborative

I took this video last weekend (yea, yea, late post lol) and wanted to share again the amazing things of this awesome site. I have been using the bags everyday since I got them (June7th) and I am in love with them. I also used the dishwashing detergent and rinse aid last night and they both work super good. The mouthwash is great and leaves teeth squeaky clean! You all really need to check them out! https://www.grove.co/referrer/10910172/  *apologies in advance for my baggy jammies and zombified look lol*

XOXO

Erica

http://www.deitiesofheatlh.com

deitiesofhealth@gmail.com

http://www.instagram.com/fitamerica55

http://www.twitter.com/byrnerica

YouTube Deities of Health

 

Fudgey Chocolate Cupcakes

These cupcakes are super moist and yummy, and even better…easy to make! For these delish sweets, you will need the following:

2 C of your favorite plant milk (I used unsweetened vanilla almond)

2/3 C of vegetable oil or melted coconut oil

2 tsp of vanilla extract

2 1/2 C of your favorite flour (I used organic all purpose)

2 C of coconut sugar (can substitute other)

3/4 C of cocoa powder

1 tsp of salt

1 tsp of apple cider vinegar

2 tsp of baking soda

Preheat your oven to 350 and mix the oil and sugar together. Next add the vanilla, flour and cocoa. Blend well, and then add the vinegar and baking soda. Mix just enough until blended. Grease your cupcake tin and bake for 20-30 minutes. As ovens vary, I suggest looking at the 20 minute mark and if not done adding 5 minutes. I always pull out if there is just a spot of batter on the knife because it will solidify while it cools. These are yummy without frosting (I frosted some and left some bare), but if you want to add frosting, I used the one from my Coconut Lemon Cake (which you can find on here). If you would prefer a healthier frosting, mix 1/2 C of coconut oil, 1/2 C water, 1 Tbsp of vanilla extract, 2 C of avocado, 1/2 C of cocoa powder, 1 C of powdered sugar, and a couple pinches of salt. Wait until cupcakes are cool, then frost (or not) and enjoy!

XOXO

Erica

http://www.deitiesofhealth.com

http://www.instagram.com/fitamerica55

http://www.twitter.com/byrnerica

 

 

Grove Shipment #2

Y’all I am still loving being a part of the Grove Collaborative community! Got my second shipment and again I was not disappointed! Still have great prices and love that it all gets shipped to my door! Plus I yet again got some freebies thrown into the mix! Don’t forget to check them out! You will get some awesome gifts in your order too! And lets be honest, who doesn’t like shopping from their pj’s sans bra or brushed teeth, and getting the items delivered to your doorstep with some free stuff!?!?!

XOXO

Erica

Use this link to get your free 5-piece gift set!

https://www.grove.co/referrer/10910172/

 

Lasagna Rolls

I am a carb person! I love hearty dishes with pasta, garlic bread, and pastries. Just because I went Vegan doesn’t mean I have to give up on these comfort foods of mine. I always get excited when I can have a soul warming dish that tastes good and is heathy too, not only for me but for the animals who weren’t harmed for the meal as well! These lasagna rolls are so delicious and my 5 year old gobbled them up! For this recipe you will need:

Whole wheat lasagna noodles

8 oz of sliced mushrooms

1 clove of garlic minced ( or dry garlic to taste)

1 Tbsp of olive oil

1 15.5 oz jar of marinara sauce (or make your own by blending up some tomatoes, onions, garlic, Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper)

10 oz of fresh or frozen spinach

8 oz of vegan nut ricotta cheese ( I used mozzarella because I had it on hand)

1/2 Tbsp of nutritional yeast

1/4 tsp of salt and pepper

2 Tbsp of fresh basil

Pre-heat your oven to 425 degrees and cook noodles according to package. Put your oil in a pan and sauté the garlic and mushrooms until browned. Add in your marinara sauce and bring to a boil and then simmer until the sauce is thickened. Stir your spinach, vegan cheese, salt, pepper, and yeast until blended in a big bowl. Take your noodles and spoon the spinach mixture onto the noodles and roll up and place them seam side down in a greased 9inch baking dish. Poor the mushroom sauce over the rolled noodles and any extra spinach mixture you have on top and place in the oven

for about 20 minutes or until its bubbly. Sprinkle with basil, serve, and enjoy!

:Recipe provided by emeals

XOXO

Erica

Grove Collaborative

Tried out this site and I absolutely loooooove it and had to share it! So I decided to do my first ever unboxing and share all the great stuff I got! Bye bye trips to the store to get one thing (which usually leads to multiple things I didn’t need), and hello to having what I need shipped to my doorstep. Check this place out! It is awesome sauce!

 

Baked Eggplant with Quinoa

This recipe is so delicious I can’t even explain it! It is healthy, filling, and of course vegan. But to all lovers of food, vegan or not, you will want to cook this recipe time and again! It may look complex, but it is super easy to make. Inspired by emeals, this is now a favorite in our house! To make this delicious meal you will need:

1 eggplant

olive oil (you will use 1tbs for the eggplant and 1tbs for the quinoa)

1 C of quinoa ( I used red)

1 can of garbanzo beans

1/2 of a large cucumber

1 can of fire roasted tomatoes

3 tbsp of parsley (fresh or dried)

2 chopped green onions

2 tbsp of fresh lemon juice

Bottle of vegan dressing to drizzle (I used Annie’s Goddess dressing)

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees and cut your eggplant in half lengthwise. Place cut side faced up on a pan and brush 1 tbsp of olive oil on each half of the eggplant. While you are waiting for the oven to preheat, put two cups of water and the 1 cup of quinoa in a pot. Pop the eggplant in the oven, wait for your quinoa to boil and when it does, turn it down to a simmer and cover. Both the eggplant and the quinoa should take about 20 minutes (just check to see if they are both tender every 10 minutes or so). While that is cooking, chop your green onions, and your cucumbers into half moons. Drain your fire roasted tomatoes, and drain and rinse your garbanzo beans. When the quinoa is done, add your onion, cucumbers, garbanzo beans, tomatoes, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, parsley, and your two tablespoons of lemon juice and stir. I also added a little salt and pepper. Plate your eggplant and spoon on the quinoa mixture and then drizzle with dressing and enjoy! Remember this recipe is for 2 people, so double if you are making for more (although if your eggplant is big enough you could half each side).

XOXO

Erica

 

Vegan Lemon Coconut Cake

I made this the other day for my husbands birthday and it was super yummy. Note this is a very tasty cake, I went all out on this one! It is sweet and sugary and not meant to be healthy lol. Usually I do not use a lot of sugar in my recipes but hey, ya gotta live every once in a while. I will say that I did substitute stevia (sweet leaf) in place of sugar. For this recipe you will need the following:

Cake:

2C of flour

1  1/2C of sugar

3/4 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

3/4 C of banana or apple sauce (to replace 3 eggs)

2/3C oil

2/3C fresh lemon juice

3/4C tofutti sour cream (or another vegan sour cream

Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl. Add your egg replacement, oil and lemon juice and beat until smooth. Finally add the sour cream and mix until smooth (I added coconut flakes in here as well, so this is optional). Place in two 8 inch pans for 20-25 minutes. While that is baking, make your frosting and curd if you are making it. When the cakes are done and cooled, cut each in half put the lemon curd on the first layer and then place the next cake on top, layer with the lemon butter cream, and then put the next cake on top with the lemon curd. Place the last cake on top and frost.

 

Filling:

One jar of lemon fruit filling, or you can make your own. I already had the jar on hand and it was one less step to do. But if you are making your own curd;

1/4C lemon juice

2 tsp of lemon zest

1/3C sugar

3 tbsp of earth balance butter (or other vegan butter)

about 8tbs of apple sauce to replace 4 egg yolks ( you can also use the juice from a can of garbanzo beans).

Cominine all ingredients in a metal or glass bowl above a boiling pot (or in a double boiler), heat while constantly whisking. It’s done when it is thick enough to coat a spoon. Refrigerate while baking cake.

Frosting (this is the best frosting ever)!!!!!

1 1/2C of vegan butter

1 1/2C of vegetable shortening (I used coconut)

12C (about 1 bag) of confectioners sugar

3tsp of lemon zest

6 tbsp of lemon juice

3/4 tsp of vanilla

Combine shortening and butter and beat until smooth. Add half of the powdered sugar one cup at a time until combined. Add lemon juice, zest, and vanilla until combined. Add the remaining powdered sugar until smooth. If needed, add a tablespoon of water until desired consistency.