The Essential Vegan Guide
With 3 Healthy Vegan Recipes
Ate community, it’s World Vegan Day!
If you’re not vegan, no worries, there are still many benefits to adding more plants to your diet and today I’ll show you 3 easy ways to do that!
My name is Leena, I’m a _Practica_l Nutritionist, and while I’m not vegan, I’m all for adding in a plant-based meal here and there and finding easy ways to eat more plants every single day without feeling deprived of delicious food!
Today I’m going to walk you through a full day of vegan eating starting with breakfast!
Being the busy people we are, a healthy, balanced breakfast sometimes gets put to the wayside on busy mornings which is why I love an easy, prep ahead, Chia Seed Pudding.
This one is packed with fiber, fat, protein, and so many vitamins and minerals from the chia seeds! The perfect combo of fiber, fat, and protein is essential to help keep you full and focused until lunch (so you’re not thinking about food all day long).
Chia seeds are an excellent source of Omega-3 fatty acids, full of manganese which helps support a healthy metabolism, and are rich in powerful antioxidants.
The sweet, natural flavors from the banana and nut butter make the chia seed pudding not balanced and quote “healthy”, but extremely tasty. When we’re finding balance with eating to fuel our bodies and our relationship with food, it’s important you don’t sacrifice flavor in the name of “health” and sacrifice food that fuels you in the name of “flavor”. You can have both.
For lunch, we’re looking at another extremely easy, no-cook option with a Mediterranean flair. This Mediterranean Inspired Chickpea Salad is so versatile, simple, and extremely flavorful.
Chickpeas are similar to chia seeds in that they’re perfectly balanced in nature, coming equipped with ideal ratios of fiber, fat, and protein. Again, the rich fiber and plant-based protein is a sure-fire way to promote increased satiety, or fullness, for hours on end!
Pairing the chickpeas with tahini, a paste made from ground sesame seeds helps to increase the creaminess, flavors, and bump up the nutritional value even more. When it’s mixed with lemon, spices, and the veggies in your fridge, you’re curating a meal that has everything you need to feel like you’re a gourmet chef in just 10 minutes.
Dinner is quite possibly my favorite, go-to, meal! Tempeh Thai Curry is packed with spices that help reduce inflammation, have health-supporting antioxidants, and bring your meal from “eating healthy is boring” to “I can’t believe I ever ate anything else!”
Diet culture normalizes cutting out meals like Thai Curry because of the stigma that the fat from the coconut milk is fattening and pairing it with rice makes it too high in carbs. In reality, the fats from coconut milk are another plant-based source of nutrients, satiety, and satisfaction.
As far as rice goes, in the right portions, it’s perfectly healthy for most individuals and can even promote good gut health and prevent binges from extreme low carb and low-calorie diets.
In this Thai Curry, you can swap out the tempeh for tofu, chickpeas, or lentils! A frozen bag of mixed veggies or two keeps this dish easy on a weeknight but you can use fresh too! A good Thai Curry paste can be found at just about any grocery store these days too.
What’s your next plant-based meal?!
3 Healthy Vegan Recipes
Chia Seed Pudding Recipe:
- 2 cups plant-based milk
- 2 bananas
- 1/2 cup nut butter
- 6 tbsp chia seeds
- 1 tsp vanilla
- Dash of salt
- In a blender or food processor add milk, bananas, nut butter, salt, and vanilla. Blend until smooth.
- Transfer to a medium-sized bowl and stir in the chia seeds. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight.
- Store in airtight containers in the fridge for up to 7 days.
Mediterranean Inspired Chickpea Salad Recipe:
- 1 can rinsed chickpeas
- 1/2 onion
- 1/2 cup chopped carrots
- 1/2 cup chopped tomatoes
- 1/4 cup tahini
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp chili powder
- 1/2 tsp ginger powder
- Optional but makes it Mediterranean: 1 tsp zaatar or thyme & sesame seeds for topping
- Salt to taste
1. Rinse & mash chickpeas, set aside
2. Chop desired veggies, set aside
3. In a separate bowl, mix tahini, spices, and lemon. Add water slowly to reach desired consistency (you want it to be thin enough to mix with the chickpeas but thick enough that it can sit on a cracker or in a sandwich without falling out)
4. In a medium bowl mix mashed chickpeas, chopped veggies, and tahini mixture until combined
5. Top on toast, crackers, salad, or eat with a fork!
Tempeh Thai Curry Recipe:
- 1 onion
- 4 cloves of garlic
- 1 jar Thai curry paste
- 1 can light coconut milk
- 1–2 cups vegetable stock
- 1 bag of frozen mixed stir fry vegetables
- 4 oz tempeh
- 1 tsp ginger powder
- 1 tsp paprika
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Olive oil
- Coat a large pot with olive oil and cook onions and garlic over medium-low heat. After the onions are translucent, add tempeh and season with salt and pepper. Cook over medium for ~5 minutes.
- To the pot add Thai curry paste and mix. Then pour in coconut milk, vegetable stock, frozen vegetables, and remaining spices.
- Cook over low heat until vegetables are cooked through. Taste and adjust spices to your liking
- Serve over white rice, cauliflower rice, or eat as a soup.
- Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 7 days.
With my clients, I focus on shifting habits without restricting or counting calories to achieve sustainable weight loss or weight maintenance. We use practical nutrition so we can live life and feel our best!
Follow me on Instagram @Practical.Nutritionist and TikTok, or subscribe to my YouTube channel to stay up to date on the latest health tips and recipes! Or find me here: livingwithleena.com
If you’re ready to dive deep into your habits and feel confident about your choices surrounding food again, book a free consultation with me here!