Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Challenge: Vegan for a Week

Some of my Facebook friends and I are doing a challenge to be vegan for a week. And let me tell you it is certainly a challenge! I love dairy and I am craving some greek yogurt and cheese!! Thank goodness I have some great people and my husband that are here to keep me accountable. There are so many vegan options and I am having fun experimenting with new recipes.

My husband and I really enjoy overnight oats (also known as cold porridge or summer porridge). The normal recipe I use I can't use because it includes greek yogurt. I love having oats for breakfast so I decided to make mine the vegan way!

The Basic Oat Recipe:
1/2 Cup Old Fashioned Oats (Do not use steel cut or quick oats)
1/3 Cup Silk Dairy Free Yogurt 
1/3 Cup Almond milk

Combine all the ingredients in a mason jar and seal the lid and shake until well mixed

Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Oats:
Add 2 Tbsp PB2 with chocolate and 1 whole banana split and cut to the basic oat recipe. Reseal the lid and shake again until mixed. Place in refrigerator until morning

Strawberry Banana Oats:
Add 1/3 cup frozen strawberries and 1/2 banana to the basic oat recipe. Reseal the lid and shake again until mixed. Place in the refrigerator until morning.

Lunchtime is always the hardest for me to find something healthy to eat because the boys are at school and my husband is at work so I am all alone. I don't want to create a huge mess preparing one meal for myself so this is when I snack and make my bad eating decisions. Having a meal plan works wonders and prepping foods that can be made in larger portions helps also. In anticipation of my lunch time, I decided to make a three bean salad.

Three Bean Salad:
1 Can Kidney beans
1 Can Garbanzo beans
1 Can Green beans
1/2 Cup Green pepper diced
1/2 Cup Red pepper diced
1 Apple (cored and diced) toss in lemon juice to keep from browning
3 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
1 Tsp Dijon Mustard
1 Tsp Ground Cloves
1 Tsp Pepper

Combine all the ingredients (including the apple cider vinegar, mustard, pepper and cloves) into a container with a lid and shake. The salad will taste even better after being placed in the refrigerator overnight.

There are many variations of this salad including substituting black beans as one of the "three" beans,  or adding onion, celery.

Dinner time is family time so we have to have some good food for that! We are not forcing the boys to adhere to our diet so anything we make to eat I prepare the meat or other non vegan items separately. We made some Taco Salads for dinner tonight excluding the cheese, sour cream and meat for myself and my husband.

Our salad started with a base of Spring mix. I topped it with a mixture of corn and black beans. I grilled some onion with red and green peppers and layered that on top of the corn and black beans. To finish the salad I added avocado and black olives and used salsa as our dressing.

We are attempting to make some changes in our diets and keep our bodies healthy. I would love to hear about new challenges or ideas to add some excitement on our journey to a healthier lifestyle.

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