Vegan Mexican Stir Fry

Vegan Mexican Stir Fry PinThis Vegan Mexican Stir Fry is a great weeknight meal since it’s quick to make and amazingly delicious. Since this recipe only has about 89 calories per serving, you really need to eat it with something else. You can prepare some brown rice and refried beans ahead of time and heat them up to save time.

It takes only a few minutes to chop up some peppers and onions, and since most of the flavor comes from the salsa, you can easily have this ready to eat in under 10 minutes.

We make ours with my Grandpa’s Vegan Dipping Hot Sauce and Amelia’s Vegan Refried Beans, but you can just as easily use store-bought refried beans and salsa. Just make sure they’re oil-free and lard-free. A lot of canned refried beans have lard. Yuck!

This is one of our go-to recipes. We eat this one almost every week, especially on nights when Amelia has her belly dancing class at The Tribal Fusion House here in Cuenca, Ecuador. If you’d like to see her belly dancing, here’s a video. She’s in front on the right.

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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Tahini Stir Fry with Tofu

Tahini Stir Fry PinThis Tahini Stir Fry with Tofu recipe is one of our favorites stir fries. We used to eat this one almost every week because it’s fast, easy and flavorful. However, since I found out I still have high cholesterol, we’ve cut this one out for awhile.

We still eat stir fries similar to this one every week, but the tofu and tahini add 5 grams of saturated fat per serving, which is way more than I need to consume while trying to lower my cholesterol. It’s also not great for weight loss so if you’re trying to lose weight or lower your cholesterol, you’re better off eating our low-fat Easy Vegan Asian Stir Fry.

Greger might disagree with this advice, but I side with Esselstyn and Ornish on this one. They’re the experts in heart disease, which runs rampant in my family, along with cancer, stroke, diabetes and obesity. With the deck stacked against me, Amelia and I have decided to err on the side of caution when it comes to foods high in saturated fat, like tahini.

With that said, the tofu in this recipe adds a nice meaty texture and contributes most of the 18 grams of protein. And it absorbs the flavors of the sauce and other ingredients so it’s very tasty. This recipe is also loaded with fiber, vitamin C, calcium and iron.

This is a nice one-pot meal (not counting the rice) so it’s also fast and easy to clean up.

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 Sweet and Sour Seitan with Veggies

Vegan Sweet and Sour Seitan PinThis Vegan Sweet and Sour Seitan with Veggies recipe is sweet, savory and delicious! It’s also a little spicy, thanks to the hot pepper Amelia added.

This recipe was inspired by a recipe in Dr. Esselstyn’s book, Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease. I read Dr. Esselstyn’s book after discovering I still had high cholesterol after more than 2 years of eating a Whole-Food Plant-Based (WFPB) diet. And I found this out on the same day my mom had a stent put in her heart to fix a large blockage. You can read more about this bad day in my blog post, “Can Vegans Get Heart Disease?

Dr. Esselstyn’s book is full of delicious, low-fat and oil-free recipes. It’s also full of scientific evidence showing that a WFPB diet is the only diet proven to prevent and reverse heart disease.

We modified this Vegan Sweet and Sour Seitan with Veggies recipe a little bit by using both broccoli and cauliflower, as well as a hot pepper that we got at our favorite mercado here in Cuenca, Ecuador. We also used a fresh pineapple instead of canned, which meant we had less juice than you get from canned pineapple. We added a tablespoon of brown sugar to make up for the missing sweetness. Finally, we changed the order of things a bit to make it a little quicker and easier to prepare.

It’s hard to find cornstarch here in Ecuador, so we use the widely available yucca powder as the sauce thickening agent. You can also use agar powder, tapioca powder or arrowroot. Use whatever you can find.

Try different veggies, using whatever you have on hand, or veggies that need to be used before they go bad. Being creative brings new and exciting flavors to recipes so they stay interesting.

We got our no-oil seitan from Fratello Vegan here in Cuenca, Ecuador. In addition to delicious vegan food made to order with a great view of the Tomebamba river, they also sell seitan, vegan chorizo sausage, vegan desserts and other vegan foods that can be hard to find in grocery stores.

While the plant-based and vegan movements are growing rapidly here in Ecuador, the grocery stores are still a bit behind the times. They do have some vegan options, but the selection is limited and often out-of-stock. It’s nice that Fratello is helping us to fill in the gaps.

Vegan Sweet and Sour Seitan Amelia Allergic ReactionAfter we ate this delicious meal, Amelia found out her pineapple allergy is still alive and well. Normally, cooking pineapple seems to make it safe for her to eat, but about 30 minutes after dinner, she broke out in hives all over her body. They lasted about an hour and then went away, thankfully.

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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Teriyaki Tofu Stir Fry

Teriyaki Tofu Stir Fry PinThis Teriyaki Tofu Stir Fry recipe is filling, nutritious and satisfying. The teriyaki gives it a delicious sweetness and the soy sauce makes it savory. It’ll surely be a favorite recipe for your standard rotation.

There are a lot of myths and misinformation about soy and tofu floating around, thanks to the dairy industry. When they first noticed soy milk carving out a chunk of their dairy profits, they launched an all-out assault on soy to stop the hemorrhaging. Thankfully, it hasn’t worked and soy continues to edge out dairy and other unhealthy animal sources of protein.

Despite the false, unsupported claims made by the dairy industry in their soulless and arguably criminal attack on soy, according to Dr. Michael Greger, author of the bestselling book How Not To Die, “Soy seems to lower breast cancer risk, an antiestrogenic effect, but can also help reduce menopausal hot-flash symptoms, a proestrogenic effect…. Overall, researchers have found that women diagnosed with breast cancer who ate the most soy lived significantly longer and had a significantly lower risk of breast cancer recurrence than those who ate less.” [source]

Organic tofu is a healthy source of protein that has been consumed by the longest living humans for thousands of years. It’s time to put the anti-tofu movement to rest and embrace this nutritious food.

This recipe uses a little oil to make the tofu crispy, but you can replace that with vegetable broth if you eat an oil-free diet. Add some sesame seeds to the broth for a little natural oil that’ll be released during cooking.

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 Stuffed Eggplant

Vegan Stuffed Eggplant PinAmelia whipped up this Vegan Stuffed Eggplant for us as a low calorie dinner made from veggies we had in the fridge. We wanted to drop a few pounds so she’s been making us some delicious low calorie meals made mostly of fresh veggies, and this is one of my favorites!

Carving out the eggplant is the hardest part of this easy meal. I used a curved grapefruit knife to remove the flesh and that seemed to work well. Then I sliced it up to go with the other veggies that Amelia had prepared.

If you want to lose weight, this is a great recipe. It’s filling with all the fibrous veggies, but very low calorie. In fact, it only has about 140 calories so you can even serve this as a side dish with a Portobello Mushroom Steak. It would also be a really good lunch on a low-cal day or served with a delicious baked or boiled potato.

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 Pasta Salad

Vegan Pasta Salad PinThis Vegan Pasta Salad is oil free, delicious and easy to make. It’s a great summer dish to take on a picnic or to a family gathering.

Pasta salad has always been one of my favorite side dishes. We always used the store-bought mix before going WFPB, but it has lots of additional ingredients, preservatives and uses lots of oil. So Amelia decided to make our own and added some more colorful veggies while she was at it.

Amelia used cauliflower, grape tomatoes, cucumber and black olives, but it would also be great with artichokes, broccoli or your other favorite veggies.

You can use your favorite Italian salad dressing, but we used my oil-free creation, JP’s Italian Salad Dressing. This salad dressing is also easy to make so the hardest part of this recipe is chopping the veggies.

It’s easy to make this recipe gluten-free, too. Just use gluten-free pasta instead of the flour-based rotini that we used.

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 Stir Fry

Vegan Stir FryAmelia cooked this Vegan Stir Fry about 8 times before she was happy with its flavor and veg composition. This one is all hers and it’s delicious!

We used fresh ingredients in this recipe, but if you’re in a hurry or hate chopping up a bunch of veggies, you can use a variety of frozen veggies or a package of mixed veggies. We use frozen mixed veggies quite a bit for this recipe, especially when we’re short on time.

I prefer eating it over brown rice, as this recipe calls for. But we also like it over Tofu Shirataki Spaghetti Noodles, spaghetti squash and spiralized zucchini. Amelia made it a lot, so we tried it with a lot of different things.

Amelia cooks this recipe in a skillet over medium heat covered to keep the veggie broth from evaporating too quickly. If you’re using a wok, the cook time will be less so keep that in mind.

If you want to make this gluten-free, substitute the seitan with sliced mushrooms. That’ll keep it a similar color and texture.

This recipe originally used a teaspoon of sesame oil, but since we’re not eating oil anymore, we removed it. You can add some sesame seeds to this dish to get a similar flavor. It’s a good idea to slightly toast them in a skillet before adding them to your recipe to release the oils and flavors.

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 Fajitas (Oil-Free)

Vegan Fajitas PinThese Vegan Fajitas with roasted portobello mushrooms and sautéed onions and peppers is absolutely delicious, and very nutritious!

Three corn tortillas topped with all the fixin’s has 450 calories, 11 grams of fiber and 17 grams of protein. Add to that: 70% RDA of Vitamin A, 315% Vitamin C, 76% Calcium and 24% Iron. And this doesn’t include the optional avocado, brown rice or refried beans!

Looking at these stats for one vegan dish, it’s hard to understand how the protein and calcium deficiency myths gained traction and continue to be two of the most common questions vegans get asked.

We used corn tortillas in our recipe because they’re made with only corn and water. They contain no refined flour or oil. Most flour tortillas we’ve found here in Ecuador have either oil or lard, and we haven’t found any whole wheat tortillas, so we opted for the healthier non-GMO corn tortillas. If you can find oil and lard free whole wheat flour tortillas, feel free to use those instead of corn.

Vegan Fajitas

We like using my Grandpa’s Vegan Dipping Hot Sauce on our vegan fajitas, but you can use your favorite salsa. Just be sure to get a salsa without oil or a lot of added sugar, as most store-bought brands contain one or both.

The avocado, brown rice and Refried Beans are optional since this is already a filling and high calorie meal without them. However, they make great companions for these Vegan Fajitas! These are also fantastic topped with a little Vegan Cashew Sour Cream!

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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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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Chickpea Scramble

Chickpea ScrambleThis Chickpea Scramble recipe is a great substitute for eggs and tofu. It’s made with chickpea flour, which is full of nutritious protein and complex carbs. It has a similar texture to scrambled eggs while the Himalayan black salt gives the scramble an egg smell and flavor.

Like eggs, this recipe has a lot of protein. Unlike eggs, it has a lot of fiber and NO cholesterol. We sautéd the veggies with vegetable broth so it’s also oil free and the chickpea flour makes it gluten free. You just can’t go wrong with this delicious recipe!

Enjoy with a slice of whole grain toast or our delicious Oven Roasted Red Potatoes.

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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