The Best Vegan Chili!

TheBestVeganChili

A few nights ago, I was thinking that I really wanted to make a batch of vegan chili. I didn’t look up any recipes, but I knew that I had a few key ingredients at home that I could throw together. I have made some truly delicious food in my day, but even I could not have predicted how much I would love this new chili recipe! It’s amazing! I’ve made it twice so far and know that this will remain a go-to for me. It will be especially delicious on a cold day. Try it and let me know what you think. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

Vegan, Gluten-Free, Soy-Free, GMO-Free

1 medium sized onion

3 medium sized organic carrots

1/2 bag Beyond Meat Fiesty Crumbles

1 15 oz. can organic kidney beans (you may also use dry beans)

1 15 oz. can organic white kidney beans (or beans of your choice)

1/2 -3/4 cup organic tomato sauce

Water

Salt, pepper, and allspice to taste

Heat a few tablespoons of water in a pot and then add the onion. Stir until the onion is translucent. I like to add a bit of ground pepper to the onion, but it’s up to you. Add the Beyond Meat and stir for at least 5 minutes. Add the tomato sauce. You can choose whether you’d like to add 1/2 cup or more of tomato sauce. Let the mixture thicken. Add salt, pepper, and allspice to taste. Since the Beyond Meat is already seasoned, you don’t have to add much. Add carrots and let simmer for 10 minutes. Add the beans and bring everything to a boil. Let the chili simmer for at least 10-15 minutes before serving. Enjoy with whole grain bread, crackers, veggie scoops, chopped vegetables, or just a spoon!

Show Your Heart You Care

Eat Red for a Healthy Heart!

A special thank you to PCRM for this great information!

February is American Heart Month! Since heart disease remains the #1 killer in America, it’s imperative that we all learn how to protect our hearts by making simple, lasting lifestyle changes that can save our lives. A plant-based diet has been shown to treat and even reverse heart disease in adults and children alike. If you need help transitioning to a plant-based diet, I’d love to help. Many of my clients have successfully adopted a plant-based diet and seen remarkable results, including: weight loss, lower cholesterol, lower blood glucose levels, lower blood pressure, better sleep, increased energy, clearer skin, and much more.

Whether you adopt a 100% plant-based diet or not, it’s important that you eat enough fruits and vegetables throughout the day. Take a look at the photo on the top of the page and be sure to include these foods in your diet as best as you can. Since cardiovascular disease (CVD) can be prevented and even reversed, we know that we can save many lives, just by sharing this information with others, and helping each other make positive changes to our diet and lifestyle.

Facts on CVD:

  • Costs the US $108.9 billion each year, including the cost of medications, lost productivity, and health care services.
  • According to the CDC, “about 600,000 people die of heart disease in the United States every year–that’s 1 in every 4 deaths.”
  • Many CVD deaths can be prevented through simple lifestyle changes – wow!

The Journal of the American College of Cardiology studied 20, 721 men over the course of 11 years and determined that by doing these 5 things, these men lowered their risk of having a heart attack by 86%, as compared to those men who did not enjoy this diet and lifestyle:

  • Eating a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes
  • Getting enough exercise – a brisk walk 30 minutes a day is a great start :)
  • Not smoking
  • Limiting alcohol intake
  • Reducing belly fat

Blood Pressure and Cholesterol

It’s important to know what your blood pressure and cholesterol levels are; if you have high blood pressure, it’s crucial that you work to keep your blood pressure under control. A healthy diet that includes whole, plant-based foods and contains a minimal amount of processed junk and animal foods will help to keep your blood pressure normal. Since cholesterol is only found in animals and their by-products, making a switch to a plant-based diet will help improve your cholesterol levels.

Manage Your Stress

I also believe that it’s important for us to reduce our stress levels. One of the ways that we can keep our stress levels low is by exercising! Find an activity you love and enjoy it :). This can be walking, biking, hiking, running, yoga, jogging, swimming, dancing – whatever you love, do it, and do it often. Another way to keep stress at bay is by meditating. I always feel instantly calmer, happier, and more grounded when I meditate. Be sure to surround yourself with people you love, who support and cherish you. There’s such beauty in friends and family who make your heart happy – nurture these people and the relationships that you have with them. If you are creative, express your creativity. Find a career that encourages you to share your talents with the world. Do what you love and you will feel fulfilled. As always, be grateful for what you have, and be compassionate towards others.

I know that the statistics on CVD can be frightening, but the good news is that we can keep our hearts healthy by enjoying a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes (eat your beans!). We also need to find an activity that we love and keep stress levels low by exercising, meditating, and developing positive relationships with people we love. Be healthy and happy!

Vegan Bagel Burger

BagelBurgerI live next to a delicious gluten-free bakery, so I picked up some vegan, gluten-free bagels, and they’re delicious! I make this burger bagel whenever I want something really filling; I actually made it today, but could only eat half of it at a time, so I saved the other half for later in the day.

If you want something tasty, satisfying, and easy-to-make, read about how I put this together and get one for yourself!

A Perfect Dessert Smoothie

TropicalIslandSmoothie

I absolutely love this smoothie! This blend of strawberries, pineapple, and coconut is perfect. I truly feel like I am on a gorgeous, tropical island when I am drinking this smoothie. I can honestly say that it makes the perfect dessert, as it’s refreshing, sweet, and satisfying. This is the same as my Tropical Island Smoothie – please try it and share it with friends and family. It’s so good that I feel that I have to share it again and again!

Blueberry Pineapple Banana Smoothie Bowl

BlueberrySmoothieBowl

I made this Blueberry Pineapple Banana Smoothie Bowl one day when I wanted to have a smoothie, but I also wanted to add other things to it. I ended up blending organic blueberries, pineapple, half a banana, and organic, ground flaxseeds. I chopped up the other half of the banana and put it on top. I’ve added walnuts, too. One time I had some healthy cereal (I hardly ever buy cereal) and I added some of that, too.

I usually follow this rule, “eat it alone or leave it alone” when it comes to fruit, but I’ve never had any issues when I’ve eaten this bowl. In fact, I love it! Fruit is easily digested, so the reason why we want to eat it by itself is that if we’ve had a meal and then we eat fruit, the fruit will want to pass through our digestive tract, but it will just sit on top of the other food, and it may ferment and give us a stomachache – yikes!

I haven’t found this to be the case with this bowl, so I recommend trying it and seeing how you feel! It’s super tasty :). And thanks to the blueberries, it’s packed with antioxidants! Pineapple is anti-inflammatory, so in addition to making this smoothie super yummy, it’s also really good for you. The flaxseeds will give you omega-3 fatty acids and plant lignans. Try it and tell me if you like it! I’ve made this before early morning meetings, put it in tupperware, and chopped up the banana during the meeting – it’s that simple!

Ingredients:

Vegan, Gluten-free

1 cup organic blueberries (fresh or frozen)

1/2 cup pineapple chunks (fresh or frozen)

1 medium sized banana

2 tablespoons organic, ground flaxseeds

Enough water to cover the fruit

Add all of the ingredients to the blender, blend, and enjoy!

Freshly Squeezed Orange Juice

SlicedOranges{Sliced oranges on my cutting board – yum!}

When I went to visit my friend Felice in Ojai, we picked oranges from the gorgeous orange orchard that was essentially in her backyard. Ojai is filled with delicious, fresh, organic fruits and vegetables and people often leave bags of oranges on the side of the road where you can make a donation (based on trust and honesty) and take some home for yourself. I’ve also seen people leave out avocados with a small donation box next to them. I love the idea of living amongst a group of people who are genuinely committed to helping each other.

Felice has a beautiful young daughter named Phoebe, and together, the three of us picked lots of oranges. For the remainder of my trip, I had freshly squeezed orange juice at least once a day. I even got to take a big bag full of fresh oranges home with me. This was in the fall; even though I am enjoying my summer, I still want one more cup of freshly squeezed orange juice from those yummy Ojai oranges.

My parents actually have an orange tree in their backyard. They swore to me that the oranges are bitter, but I was so excited to see them that I decided to pick some for myself. This was several months ago, but they were tasty! I was happy that I could have freshly squeezed orange juice for just a little longer. Some oranges were a little sour, but combined with the sweet ones, my juice was perfect. I am thinking that I’ll step into my parents backyard and see if I can gather any more oranges. I may just be able to squeeze enough for one more cup :).

I would definitely recommend squeezing your own oranges, instead of buying orange juice from the store. By then, the juice has been pasteurized, and it has lost almost all of its nutrients. It’s best to buy (or pick!) your oranges and make freshly squeezed orange juice in the morning (or whenever you’d like). That way, you get all of the nutrients – right in your cup – and then straight into your body! In addition to lots of vitamin C, oranges also have fiber, folate, vitamin b1, vitamin b5, and minerals such as potassium, copper, and calcium – wow!

Start thinking ahead for fall and grab those oranges when you can!

Fresh Vegetable Sandwich

VeggieSandwich

This fresh, yummy vegetable sandwich has become such a favorite of mine! It’s simple to put together, the ingredients are affordable, and it’s absolutely delicious! I can’t get enough of it and I know that once you try it, you will quickly make this a go-to in your line of recipes :).

Ingredients:

Vegan, Gluten-Free

1 ripe tomato

1 organic carrot, shredded

1/2 avocado, sliced

1 handful organic spinach (or other organic green)

Pickles

Spicy brown mustard (that’s the one I love, but feel free to use whatever you’d like)

Grapeseed vegenaise (optional; I do love the creaminess that it adds to the sandwich though!)

Cucumber, sliced (I didn’t add it this time, but sometimes I do)

Black pepper (optional)

Cayenne pepper (optional)

Any other vegetables you’d like to add :)

Spread the mustard on one slice of bread and the vegenaise on the other. Add the tomatoes on one slice of bread and sprinkle some black pepper on top. Add the pickles, shredded carrot, organic spinach, cucumber, and avocado. Add cayenne pepper to the avocado for a spicy kick. Be careful not to use too much or the sandwich will be way too spicy – a little cayenne pepper goes a long way. Add everything else that you’re using, put the other slice on top, and enjoy!