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Help me, I'm going vegan this week!

Only for a week, so far. Any suggestions would be much appreciated. I love all food, but have limited access to some ethnic products. Thus far, I've turned to Middle Eastern and North African recipes.

Breakfast ideas?

Thanks in advance!!

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  1. How about Tofu with Gingered Greens? Really delicious and fast...and easy! Lovely with brown rice. I usually don't fire up the broiler to brown the tofu--I just use a non-stick skillet for that. Link below.


    1. Amy's frozen food is a good source if you don't want to cook every meal. They have everything from a tofu scramble for breakfast to a brown rice and veggie bowl.

      The Mediterranean and North African recipes work well.

      Breakfast, most cereal with soy or rice milk. Steel Cut oatmeal made with water, you can add dried fruit or nuts to flavor it. Also Smart Balance makes a vegan margarine. Toast with jam or nut butter (be careful with your bread purchase as some have milk or eggs).

      Lunch and dinner, I love entree salads. Add garbanzo, black or pinto beans or nuts for protein. A hummus sandwich in pita with cucumber, tomato, red onion and lettuce is good. Veggie stir fries. There's a moussaka recipe with beans and tahini. Tabouli salad. Dolmades--rice and pine nut stuffed grape leaves you can buy prepackaged at Trader Joes.

      I would google vegan recipes and see what you find. There is a wealth of information out there. I have a milk allergy so I sometimes just eat vegan, but tend to eat a lot of fish and chicken. Also anything marked kosher pareve will not have any dairy, but may have egg.

      Boca burgers are also vegan, but be careful with your buns. As I said above baked goods often time have eggs, milk, and/or butter in them. Good fresh bakery bread is less likely than mass produced.

      1. Vegan or Vegetaria?
        love tofu scramble with veggies fro breakfast. I use the soft tofu and sauteed garlic, onion and peppers-maybe basil and tomatoes.

        You can also use soft tofu, a little mustard, chives, and salt and pepper to make an "eggless" egg salad, good on salads and in wraps (check label for ingredients)

        Continuing the tofu theme, alton brown has a great chcolate peanut tofu silken pie on the food tv website.

        Also, nothing beats fresh fruit for dessert! bake a pear with brown sugar and spices, poach the pear! Bake apples?

        Do bananas foster and serve it over tofutti!

        1. Check out www.vegan-food.net

          You can make some excellent vegan soups (it it isn't 110 degrees where you live) and don't miss the Trader Joes Vegan Chocolate Chip cookies - they are very good.

          1. Couscous - curried, with or without nuts and dried fruit.

            I also like to grill veggies- like Portabello, zucchini, bell peppers and fennel simply with EVOO and garlic and S&P. Portabello makes a good meat substitute because of its texture. Grilled veggies are great as side dish or to include in sandwiches with a drizzle of balsamic and olive oil.

            Hummus, babbaganoush and tabbouli, use veggies and pita crisps as accompaniment

            Guacamole with chips, veggie burrito with beans and rice and and maybe a soy protein product.

            Try making sushi rolls with veggie ingredients - cucumber, avocado, sprouts, daikon. Miso soup using veggie stock, with tofu and wakame. Hijiki and carrot salad; cucumber salad with seaweed. Edamame.

            Fruit - Mixed berries in season, peaches, apple, pineapple, grapes and mango. Throw in some ghopped ginger or mint chiffonade for extra zing. When you get sick of the fruit, add to soy and blend with ice for smoothies

            Granola and soymilk

            Oatmeal - with steel cut oats, topped with vanilla soy and a bit of fresh fruit or dried cranberries, ginger and toasted nuts.

            A simple veggie soup with fresh organic veggies- add beans, potato, rice or barley, and cumin, white wine, coriander, S& P to flavor the broth. MAke a basil or parsley pistou to add extra oomph.

            No-egg pasta with classic pesto using soy cheese.


            Sorbet with some compote for dessert (how about plums simmered in red wine). I've also soaked peaches (now in season) with some aromatics and rum and grilled them to eat with vanilla or coconut sorbet. Buy a pint of tofutti or have aforementioned soy fruit shake

            1 Reply
            1. re: kayonyc

              Oh, this reminded me of another breakfast idea. Smoothies. Mix 1 cup chocolate soy milk (I like 8th Continent or Silk brand), frozen berries (strawberry, blueberry, marionberry, and/or blackberry), half a banana and blend. Yum.

            2. Hello I was Vegan for a year but i enjoyed cheese to much I f you like mayonaise try Veganaise it is GREAT taste just like mayo but it is vegan all the others taste very bad . also there are a lot of vegan cook books out there the uncheese cookbook also check out Peta 's website.
              Good luck

              1. One of my latest faves are the baking mixes from Southaven Farm -- www.southavenfarm.com. They make awesome pancakes, muffins, breads, etc., and they are vegan if you use soy milk and soy yogurt or tofu for the mix-ins. They truly are delicious. I'm not vegan but my sister is so I make them vegan for her, regular for us. Really yummy with lots of great recipes on their site.

                1. For dessert you could make some of the vegan chocolate cake sometimes called "Wacky Cake" - vegetable oil for fat, cocoa powder for chocolate and vinegar/baking soda for levening. It is actually one of my favorite ways to make chocolate cake - so easy and so moist. There are many recipes out there. Mine is from "Passionate Vegetarian" by Crescent Dragonwagon. I would actually recommend checking this book out of the library for the week if you can find it - there are a lot of vegan recipes in the book (or vegan substitution ideas in the non-vegan recipes).

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: LauraB

                    There's this one bakery near me that does a vegan chocolate cake that I like better than "normal" chocolate cakes. The chocolate taste is more clear and strong because it's not covered up with milk and eggs. However, the cake is still moist and rich. Also, the cake is really dark, almost black but I don't think they use black cocoa.

                    I've made some good vegan chocolate cakes but none as good as the one from the bakery. I can't remember the name off the top of my head, argh.

                  2. I've come out of delurking (first post -- hi!) to mention The Post Punk Kitchen website (http://www.theppk.com). It has a lot of really good recipes. I've tried the Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies which were yummy (recipe here http://www.theppk.com/recipes/dbrecip... -- I reduced the sugar) and just recently I made the Sunny Corn muffins (recipe here: http://www.theppk.com/recipes/dbrecip...). I also reduced the sugar to 1/3 cup and added blueberries and a squeeze of lemon juice.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: masochistic_chef

                      Those post punks are great cooks and bakers indeed! Their book, Vegan With A Vengeance, has tons of delicious recipes. Do you have it?

                      1. re: operagirl

                        I do! It's probably one of my more used cookbooks...and I'm not even vegan (or vegetarian). The pumpkin muffins and the carrot bisque are a couple of my faves.

                        1. re: masochistic_chef

                          The parsnip fritters in VWAV are awesome! I love Isa Chandra's stuff and I'm not vegan either.

                          Another tip for snacks: pop popcorn in oil and then sprinkle with nutritional yeast. This is my favorite way to eat popcorn.

                          The website is also good. I've had some luck with the baking, especially the MINDBLOWING pumpkin coconut cake (or something like that -- it's pumpkin bread made with coconut milk). 'Made the recipe in a bundt for a friend's birthday and no one knew it was vegan. Best wishes.

                    2. Lots of great suggestions. Two more:

                      1) Miso soup without the bonito flakes in the dashi.
                      2) Tempeh! Makes a great sandwich pan fried with a little dark sesame oil, add to grains, a stir fry -- the list goes on and on and on...

                      1. Wow! Thanks for your ideas everyone!! While I'm only eating vegan for a week (so far), it's certainly a challenge for a girl who loves food so much. I'm looking forward to trying your suggestions.

                        2 Replies
                          1. re: Buckethead

                            It's kind of a health experiment. I'm trying to narrow down a food sensitivity.

                        1. After following a link from another thread, I found this recipe for Vegan Twinkies (!) :


                          This blog has other nice-looking vegan recipes, as well.


                          1. Congratulations! For breakfast, load up on fruit. Try not to mix. My personal favorites are spinach and mushroom quesadillas. Pita w/olives, peppers and onions. Vegan Brownies. Organic Pea Soup. Miso soup with tofu and spinach. Spinach dip with nayonaise and soy cream cheese. Homemade salsa w/tomato and cilantro, onions and peppers. Salad w/grapes, carrots, olives and Bacos. Vegan Chocolate Cookies from Wild Oats. Fajitas w/soy burger, peppers, onions, homemade guacamole. Chocolate Soy Milk. Vegan Berry Pie. I'm actually trying the raw thing now so most of this is off my plate, but it's a great start. Also, Indian, Thai and Japanese restaurants are typically vegan-friendly. Just ask about the ingredients that are not on the menu. If you can find a vegan restaurant it would be ideal.

                            Good Luck and try to keep it up, it's so worth it! ;-)

                            1. My three favorite and go-to breakfasts are here - http://www.godairyfree.org/News/Nutri.... All are vegan.

                              If you have access to coconut milk, that can be a delicious lifesaver for making your own Indian and Thai food without many special ingredients. If you can get a hold of some soy sauce, add a little maple syrup or vegan sugar, and you are ready to make a teriyaki stir fry!

                              Pasta salads with a good vinaigrette (homemade or store bought), some veggies, olives, maybe roasted red peppers, or sun dried tomatoes, some garbanzos (chickpeas) - all left to soak in over night - may be an excellent summer option. No cheese or meat required!

                              1. If you want to get help on veganism, start by joining VeganAdam.com. it's an online non-profit, non-donation community for vegans to meet and share information. Lots of resources and videos on the site too. I highly reccomend it.

                                1. Great!! Thanks for the ideas and encouragement everyone. So far, so good. I'm no longer waking up and going to bed hungry!!

                                  1. Ratatouille is my standard vegans-are-coming-to-dinner dish... serve it over rice with a salad and there you go!

                                    Stir-fry is always a good option, with tofu and lots of veggies.

                                    You can make Indian curries of all kinds - just use oil instead of ghee, and avoid recipes that call for yogurt.

                                    Wraps... falafel... you really have lots of options!

                                    Just don't go raw on me ;)

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: missfunkysoul

                                      Oh no! That's a little to extreme for me!!

                                      Thanks for the ideas.

                                    2. water for breakfast
                                      raw vegetables raw fruit for lunch
                                      only raw food
                                      no food after lunch
                                      two days of fasting per week


                                      1. I adore Whole Foods mushroom tofu stroganoff. Iif you have a whole foods around, they are great for vegan eating!

                                        I found this recipe online that seems very similar to what they serve. It supposedly came from the Whole Foods cookbook. I have not made it yet myself. I've been lazy and just buy it!

                                        1 lb. extra-firm tofu, pressed, drained, and cut into 1 inch cubes
                                        1/2 c. Italian Herb Vinaigrette (recipe follows), or your favorite marinade

                                        3 T olive oil
                                        1/2 large onion, chopped
                                        2 cloves garlic, minced or crushed
                                        1/2 c. red wine
                                        1 1/2 lb. cremini or white button mushrooms, sliced 1/4 inch thick
                                        3/4 c. unsweetened soy milk
                                        3 T tamari, soy sauce, or shoyu
                                        1 t fresh ground pepper
                                        2 good bay leaves (organic if you can get them)
                                        1 t dried thyme or 1 T fresh

                                        To press tofu: Cut one block into 4 even pieces, lay on one side of a clean dish towel and cover with the other side. Weigh down with a really big book or anything that can provide a good, even weight. Leave for 20 minutes.

                                        For Vinaigrette:

                                        1 c. olive oil
                                        1/2 c. sweet balsamic vinegar
                                        2 sprigs fesh rosemary, chopped
                                        2 t dried Italian seasonings (oregano, basil, etc)
                                        1/2 t pepper
                                        1/4 t red chile flakes
                                        2 sprigs parsley, chopped
                                        1/2 t salt
                                        1 clove garlic, crushed

                                        Put all ingredients into a shallow, flat dish and whisk well. Add your cubed tofu and toss to coat.

                                        Preheat oven to 450. Remove the tofu cubes from the marinade and place on a baking sheet. Roast until lightly browned, about 20 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.

                                        In a large cast iron skillet, saute onion slowly for 20-25 minutes over low heat, adding a wine here and there to maintain moisture, but not so much as to keep from getting good little brown bits on the bottom of the pan. Add garlic and mushrooms and toss well with onions. Put a lid on the pan until they are well steamed, then remove and stir to loosen everything up. Add the rest of the wine and scrape up those brown bits with a wooden spoon. Add milk, tamari, pepper, bay leaves, and thyme. Simmer 10 minutes. Add tofu and heat through.

                                        1. This is a side note but I still think worth posting. My vegan friend has turned me onto a frozen supplement called E 3 Alive which is found in the frozen section of Whole Foods.

                                          It's basically a frozen algae containing over 67 minerals and 97% absorbable by the body. It comes frozen, so you defrost it partially pour into ice cube trays and refreeze everything to ensure it doesnt spoil. Then have a cube a day. If you keep it just in the fridge it lasts 7-10 days but the bottle is to big to go through it in ten days.

                                          I am a big vitamin person but have never felt an actual difference from any type of supplement. I truly have felt an overall difference while taking this. I'm not constantly fatigued, I feel just better. I highly suggest it.

                                          This might be a great way to ensure you're getting all the nutrients you need. :)

                                          PS are you looking to eat out? Check out Pure Food and Wine in Manhattan or Red Bamboo in Brooklyn.

                                          1. My favorite hearty dinner salad (and leftovers for lunches):

                                            1 can rinsed, drained black beans
                                            1 avocado (or 1+ if it's small)
                                            1/2 bell pepper diced
                                            1/2 cup celery, diced
                                            3-4 green onions
                                            1 cup corn (i use frozen, b/c I'm lazy)

                                            2+ tbs lemon juice
                                            1 tbs olive oil
                                            2+ tbs whole grain mustard
                                            whisk above and mix with salad

                                            it's a great summer dish. If you're into soy cheese or for after your vegan week a small, plain quesadilla (we use pepperjack cheese) makes a great garnish.