Healthy Red Beans and Rice

Healthy Red Beans and Rice PinThis Healthy Red Beans and Rice recipe is full of color, flavor and texture. With only 209 calories per serving, it packs 12 grams of fiber, 9 grams of protein, 89% RDV of Vitamin A, 174% Vitamin C and 25% Iron. This traditional Creole dish is a nutrition powerhouse!

Amelia’s mom gave us this recipe that she found in the American Diabetes Associations’ Diabetes & Heart Healthy Cookbook. I think it’s interesting that the original recipe calls for sautéing the veggies in olive oil when several studies suggest that added fat such as olive oil is a leading cause of Type II diabetes. Needless-to-say, we replaced the oil with vegetable broth as we generally do to remove the added fat.

This is a nice one-pot recipe that makes a great stand-alone dish, but it also pairs well with a healthy Side Salad or a slice of multigrain bread for dipping.

If you make this recipe, please let us know your thoughts in the comments below. And please share with your friends to help spread the word about healthy plant-based eating.

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Lentil and Brown Rice Stew

Lentil and Brown Rice Stew PinAmelia’s mom made this Lentil and Brown Rice Stew recipe for us when we went to visit her. She was very excited to integrate more plants into her diet and made good use of the time she had with us. This recipe was absolutely delicious and the whole family thoroughly enjoyed eating it.

The great thing about this recipe is that it’s very filling, but relatively low calorie with only 257 calories per serving. It’s also high protein and high fiber with 20 grams of each. Adding a tbsp of Vegan Cashew Sour Cream gives it a creamier texture and a lot of extra flavor.

If you make this recipe, please let us know your thoughts in the comments below. And please share with your friends to help spread the word about healthy plant-based eating.

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Vegan Baked Potato

Vegan Baked Potato PinterestThis Vegan Baked Potato recipe is a staple in our vegan meals. Potatoes garnished with tasty toppings make a delicious side dish or even a good main dish for lunch.

Contrary to what you’ve been told over the years, potatoes are a very healthy food, especially if you want to lose weight. That’s because they have all of the essential amino acids you need to build muscle, they’re low calorie, and they’re a good source of fiber to keep you full longer. Top them with healthy ingredients to make them taste great and you’ve got yourself one healthy, filling dish.

Dr. John McDougall is a plant-based diet expert and a potato champion. Learn more about his research and stance on potatoes on his website or in his book, “The Starch Solution.”

If weight loss is your goal, it’s best to reduce the amount of oil you consume as mush as possible. That means no vegan butter on your potatoes because it’s nearly 100% oil. Gram-for-gram, fat (9 calories/gram) has more than double the number of calories as protein and carbs (4 calories/gram).

And oil is one of the worst forms of fat because it’s easy to use a lot of it without realizing it. One tbsp of vegan butter has 80 calories (all of them from fat) and no fiber. A medium baked Russet potato with the skin has 169 calories (none from fat) so adding a tbsp of vegan butter as a topping increases the calories by nearly 50% but doesn’t make you any fuller.

And let’s be honest…most people put 2 or 3 tablespoons of butter on their potatoes. At 3 tablespoons, you would be eating 240 calories from the butter alone! That’s 50% MORE calories from butter than the entire potato has!

There’s a relatively new movement to blame the obesity epidemic on the low-fat craze that started in the 80’s, but what people don’t remember is that the low-fat craze started because we already had a growing obesity problem, and an existing heart disease epidemic. Several studies in the 60’s and 70’s concluded that fat was the main culprit so the low-fat craze was born.

Unfortunately, without fat, the food tasted terrible, so the food companies replaced the fat with sugar. The added sugar and over-processing of foods, along with fats from increased animal product consumption, are the main contributors to our increasing obesity and heart disease epidemic. If you want to learn more about this topic, watch the documentary Fed Up.

We like to use unsweetened, plain, non-dairy yogurt as a topping for our potatoes because it tastes a lot like sour cream and it’s fortified with B12. We also like to use our Vegan Cashew Sour Cream for some additional protein and healthy fat.

Try topping your vegan baked potato with sautéed kale or spinach, Easy Lentilsbeet greenschili, pasta sauce, Grandpa’s Vegan Dipping Hot Sauce, salsa or your other favorite, low-fat vegan toppings.

You can microwave your potatoes, but they taste better baked in the oven. Just remember to preheat the oven about an hour before you want to eat. I always forget that and end up microwaving them half the time!

If you make this recipe, please let us know your thoughts in the comments below. And please share with your friends to help spread the word about healthy plant-based eating.

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Vegan Black Bean Burgers

Vegan Black Bean Burgers PinThese Vegan Black Bean Burgers are quick and easy to make, but it’s also filling and delicious. Tastes great on a whole grain bun with Swiss chard, a slice of tomato and spicy mustard.

The texture and consistency of the patties is a lot like ground beef. We baked them in the oven, but you could easily throw them on the grill to get some of that extra smoky flavor or fry them in a skillet if you’re not concerned with keeping them oil free.

You can make up a batch of these and keep them in the refrigerator for several days. Since they’re not made of meat, they won’t spoil or stink up your fridge. You can even individually freeze them and pull out one or two at a time.

If you make this recipe, please let us know your thoughts in the comments below. And please share with your friends to help spread the word about healthy plant-based eating.

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Vegan Cajun Chickpea Fritters

Cajun Chickpea Fritters PinThese vegan cajun chickpea fritters are delicious adult dinner pancakes chock full of protein and fiber. They’re also gluten free since they use chickpea flour instead of wheat flour. Although, be sure all the other ingredient you use are also gluten free.

They pair well with wilted spinach, a side salad or healthy veggies. Or you can do what we did and eat them straight off the griddle or as a main dish.

We used an electric griddle instead of frying them in a saute pan with oil, which cut down on the calories and fat a little. Plus, we were able to cook most of them at once instead of a few at a time.

We also drizzled our Vegan Ranch Dressing over them, which was yummy.

If you make this recipe, please let us know your thoughts in the comments below. And please share with your friends to help spread the word about healthy plant-based eating.

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Vegan Potato Salad with Mustard Greens

Vegan Potato SaladThis is a delicious vegan potato salad that pairs well with veggie burgers, Portobello mushroom steaks or any other meal that calls for potato salad. The mustard greens give it a little peppery kick and some crunchiness. If you can’t find mustard greens, some hearty kale will also work.

I’ve never been a huge fan of potato salad, probably because I can’t stand the taste of mayonnaise. But vegan mayonnaise is much more mild and doesn’t have any of the greasiness of regular mayonnaise. If you’re like me and can’t stand the taste of the traditional potato salad, you might really like this vegan potato salad.

If you make this recipe, please let us know your thoughts in the comments below. And please share with your friends to help spread the word about healthy plant-based eating.

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