Hey Friends! I wanted to gather a collection of some of my favourite recipes and put them all in one place. Whether you are trying veganuary for the first time, or just looking for some new meal inspiration, check out my collection of delicious, simple & predominantly whole foods recipes below. If you try anything be sure to leave me a comment to let me know how you made out, or if you need some advice don't hesitate to send me a message on Instagram or Facebook.
What is Veganuary?
Veganuary is a campaign that encourages people to try a vegan diet for the month of January. It is a way for people to learn about veganism, and to see if it is a lifestyle that they would like to adopt on a long-term basis. The campaign was started in the UK in 2014, and has since become a global movement, with people in over 190 countries participating. The goal of Veganuary is to raise awareness about the environmental, health, and animal welfare benefits of a vegan diet, and to inspire people to make more compassionate and sustainable choices in their lives.
My Vegan Journey
I actually started my vegan journey in 2019 during Veganuary. As a chef my curiosity was about "what is possible?" when it came to recipe development. Could I make delicious food and feel satisfied? What started as me just being a curious creative something, grew into much more than that. Diving into the intersection of animal welfare, the environment, physical health, human phsychology, philosophy and spirituality. Everything just clicked for me, and it became not just a diet I was curious about, but a belief system that guides a lot of the ways in which I choose to live my life. At 39 years old I am so grateful that my journey led me to where I am at. It is only a joy to cook, eat and share incredible plant based food. I hope you join me not only for this month, but long after. Whether you are fully vegan or not, you might find adding more plants to your diet has a positive impact in your life. I hope some of the recipes I share can inspire you to spend more time in the kitchen preparing nourishing, delicious food.
My Veganuary Recipe Suggestions
First up is this perfect bowl of Tomato Soup. It is everything you want a tomato soup to be. Rich and creamy with deep tomato flavour. Simple home made cashew cream is the secret in this recipe. You don't need to use dairy cream, you can achieve body and richness by blending soaked raw cashews with water until ultra smooth and creamy. It has a similar consistency to full fat dairy cream, and it just feels genius when you taste it and realize you made something perfect and it happens to be 100% plant based. I like to serve it with grilled cheese of course. I love dunking it in my soup. For my grilled cheese I buy different brands of vegan cheese, but Violife is one that I use frequently. I make my grilled cheese using olive oil, and if the cheese isn't melty by the time the bread is golden, I pop it in the oven for a few to finish the job. (I have even tossed it in the microwave for a few seconds with good success instead of heating up my entire oven.)
This Red Lentil Dhal is another staple for me. The last time I made it I picked up 2 big bags of red lentils at the store for $5. Lots for making this recipe again and again. A can of coconut milk, a couple of tomatoes, onion, garlic, ginger, lime and some spices finish the dish. It's definitely a simple, tasty and affordable meal. I like to serve it with naan bread and brown rice. I rip off a piece of warm naan bread, and spoon a bit of dhal and rice onto it. Like a little taco. Not all naan bread is vegan, but usually I can find an option that doesn't contain milk products. Just check the back of the package, or if you felt inclined you could make your own. Alternatively, any flatbread that you like would do the trick, but naan bread is definitely the most delicious in this context.
This Roasted Vegetable Club Sandwich is actually INSANE. I love it so much. Roasted Eggplant, Bell Peppers, Portobello Mushrooms, Red Onion, Fresh Tomato, Arugula, Veggie Bacon, and Basil Mayo. The Basil Mayo is what takes it over the top, and it's something you will probably want to make to elevate many other sandwiches too. Also would be good along side a big pile of roasted vegetables and potatoes for dipping. The bread I prefer to use for this sandwich is Sourdough. I bought a good quality oblong loaf and toasted it up. Generic store bought white bread won't do here. I would put this club sandwich up against any other club sandwich, veggie or otherwise. It is addictively good.
Aglio e Olio is a humble pasta dish that originates in Naples, Italy. It's simply spaghetti in an olive oil and garlic sauce. I deviate from what is authentic a bit by using multigrain pasta, and adding in garlicky mushrooms and chopped fresh parsley. I prefer this spaghetti to any of the creamy varieties to be honest. The garlicky spaghetti is delicious and the olive oil coats your lips as you eat. Not only is this a tasty meal, it is something you can pull together inexpensively. If you want to try the authentic way, leave out the mushrooms and parsley and use plain spaghetti noodles instead of whole grain. It will be delicious.
Mujaddara is an incredibly delicious Middle Eastern dish consisting of lentils and rice cooked with warm spices, raisins and then combined with a generous amount of caramelized onions. I garnish the top with crispy fried onions, vegan yogurt, chili flakes and fresh chopped parsley. This is a meal I crave continuously. I often serve it along side chopped romaine lettuce drizzled with this salsa verde. I love the combination of all of it (though I'm sure it isn't anything authentic, only sure that it is delicious.)
Who doesn't love a good Taco Salad? I love this recipe because it is full of flavour, but also good for you ingredients. There are plenty of Taco salads out there with tons of sour cream, cheese, & meat. Of course those aren't going to taste bad, but why not have something super flavourful AND good for your body. Sure this has corn chips, but I'm Ok with that. I often buy multigrain, or a quality organic brand, and as far as including a couple handfuls in my dinner goes, I think it evens out when you're loading in the vegetables and whole grains.
This Taco Salad also has fresh salsa, black beans, corn, quinoa, avocado, fresh mint & cilantro. Then it all gets dressed with a simple cumin lime vinaigrette. I also like to garnish this with pickled jalapeno peppers, a drizzle of coconut yogurt and a sprinkle of smoked paprika.
Bircher Muesli is a traditional Swiss breakfast invented in the 1900 by Swiss physician Maximilian Bircher-Brenner. Basically an overnight oat breakfast that typically consists of more fruit than oats. I just soaked the oats in water over night, then strain any remaining liquid and stir together with grated pear or apple, almond yogurt, maple syrup, toasted nuts & seeds and fresh berries. It's a nice change from cooked oatmeal! This recipe serves 1 hungry person or 2 people who are lighter eaters in the morning. The recipe can easily be doubled. I love adding oats to my diet either in a recipe like this or blitzed into my morning smoothie bowl. Add maple syrup to this recipe to taste. I always try to get away with the least amount possible to avoid added sugar....and feel free to mix it up, add dried fruit and different combinations of nuts and seeds. The possibilities are endless!
This African Sweet Potato Peanut Stew is an impressive dish made with humble ingredients. It's creamy, bright & slightly spicy. Sweet potatoes, chickpeas and tomatoes make up the bulk of the stew which is then flavoured with natural peanut butter, lime juice, cumin, coriander and chili. I like to serve this with brown rice, fresh cilantro & chopped toasted peanuts. Serve extra lime wedges on the side if you want to add a bit more brightness. I really really love this stew, I first made a version of it probably 8 years ago now. It's a tasty bowl of comfort you can make any time of the year. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!!!
This is my go to chili recipe with Black Beans, Corn and Chipotle. It has a solid veggie factor which is how I like my chili. Bell peppers, onion, carrot, celery and tomato. Cumin, chili powder and oregano for seasoning. I find the heat level of this chili perfect for me, but everyone is different when it comes to how much heat they like, you could add less chipotle to your personal taste. I shared some with my mum and she didn't find it too spicy so I think that means this recipe will work for most people. I garnish my black bean chili with shredded vegan cheddar, vegan sour cream and green onions.
Roasted Carrot Soup
Roasting Carrots before using them in a soup is a great way to intensify their flavour and bring out their natural sweetness. This roasted carrot soup is one that I make specifically when I want to feel great. It's incredibly delicious and made from predominately whole foods. This carrot soup is also perfectly spiced with a bit of cumin & coriander. I often add cashew cream or nut butters to my soups for added richness/creaminess but this one doesn't need it. This soup simply starts with carrots roasted in olive oil, then I also use a generous amount of olive oil for sweating the onions and garlic (a whole head of garlic in fact). The result, dare I say, is a luscious soup that I find to be addictively good. A touch of maple and a squeeze of lemon adds the right balance of sweet and acidity.
These Red wine braised lentils are like a warm hug. Perfect healthy comfort food for the cooler months. There is so much richness and depth happening for a simple pot of lentils. Lentils and Mushrooms are simmered with mirepoix, lots of garlic, red wine, rosemary, smoked paprika, a few other ingredients for complexity and finished with green peas and a touch of vegan butter. I really like the addition of peas but if that isn't your thing you can leave them out. I use brown or green lentils, whatever I happen to have on hand works. This dish is delicious if you just take a taste out of the pot, but I don't find the flavour profile complete until it is served with rich mashed potatoes. That's when the magic really happens. So I guess I'm saying, don't skip that part!
I love these no bake vegan granola bars so much. They are super quick to throw together and I like having them on hand for a quick breakfast or snack. These granola bars are salty, sweet and peanut butter-y. For sweetness I use vegan honey in these. Specifically, "Blond Vegan Un-Honey" from Single Origin Foods. It's a DELICIOUS alternative that is made from coconut nectar. It drizzles just like honey, and it works perfectly in these granola bars. Feel free to use your favourite nut and seeds combinations. In the granola bars pictured I did sub out some of the pumpkin seeds for dried cranberries. Anything works! If you can't get your hands on the Un - Honey, and you are fine to consume regular honey, it will work with that. I haven't tried it with other sweeteners like agave nectar, but if you try that let me know how you make out!
I can't put into words how delicious this chocolate pudding is!!! It is perfectly creamy, slightly sweet, chocolatey, and doesn't taste one bit like avocado or tofu. Just perfect chocolate pudding that actually has some health benefits. If you haven't considered desserts made from healthy ingredients, this pudding might be life changing...some kinda vegan avocado magic happening over here. Make this for an impressive yet simple dessert with coconut whipped cream and fresh raspberries, or you could use it to make trifles, layered with cake, whip & fruit. I'm not a parent, but if I was, I know I would be trying to find ways to make treats healthier. So much garbage in store bought chocolate pudding, this avocado based chocolate pudding happens to taste as good or better...and it takes literally 5 minutes to make in a food processor.
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Hey! I'm Trisha