How to Judge the Healthiness of Grain Products

How to choose healthy bread and baked goods from the nutrition label

Trying to decide what kind of bread to buy?  What granola bar, cookie, snack food, bagels, banana bread, or what pancake mix is best?

Two tips for you:

  1. Make sure the package says “whole grain”, so that you get all the vitamins and fibre from the bran of the grain.
  2. Use the 5-to-1 Rule of Carbs to Fibre

Whole Grains Only Please

Manufacturers are tricky about hiding refined grains, labels with “multigrain, or “stone-ground” or “100% wheat”, “cracked wheat”, “seven-grain” or “bran” are usually NOT a whole grain product. They are trying to hide the fact that they are using non-whole grains.

Look for the specific words together “whole grain” in front of the ingredient.  Such as “whole grain wheat”, or “whole grain corn” or even “whole grain white wheat” (white wheat is a type of wheat).  Then, apply the 5-to-1 rule to double-check it’s healthy.

The 5-to-1 Rule

Dr. Gregor from NutritionFacts.org recommends the 5-to-1 carbs to fibre rule in his book How Not To Die.  This book is full of information about foods and studies showing how certain foods prevented or reversed or caused disease in study participants.

The 5-to-1 rule says: choose products that have a ratio of carbohydrates grams to fibre grams that is 5 or less.

Refined grains are going to have a higher ratio than 5 because they have too many carbs and not enough fibre.

Look at the Nutrition Facts on the package, divide the grams of carbs by the grams of fibre, if it is 5 or less, then it’s a healthy product.

If the result is more than 5 then you are not getting enough fibre compared to the amount of carbs in that product – skip it.

A ratio higher than 5 means it’s probably made from white flour and or has a lot of sugar added.

How Not To Die: Discover the Foods Scientifically Proven to Prevent and Reverse Disease

This book has a great deal of science based information about foods that have been proven to prevent and reverse disease.

(Canada link) (US link)

For example,

the Blue Menu pancake mix that I veganized in my Whole Weekend Waffles recipe, has 21 g of carbohydrate and 5 g of fibre.

21 g / 5 g = 4.2 carbs to fibre ratio – the ratio is 5 or less and is low enough to fit in the healthy category.

 

Example 2 – Let’s compare the carbs to fibre ratio in this Aunt Jemima Mix:Image of nutrition facts for aunt jemima pancake mix

For Aunty Jemima Carbs: 27 g / Fibre 1 g = the ratio is 27.  Wow! Big difference.  Definitely over 5!  Avoid products like this.

Something for you to know… breakfast cereals are going to be higher than 5 for the most part… not healthy.  Too much sugar, not enough fibre – ’cause guess why?  They are too processed.

Why Does the 5-to-1 Ratio Matter?

More fibre per carb gram means the grain is closer to it’s original natural state.

There is more about this in the How Not to Die Book, but some important information to know is that when grains are ground into flour or puffed, they are handled by our bodies very differently than whole intact grains.

Ground flours are digested more rapidly and completely.  This raises their glycemic index and leaves fewer leftovers for the microbiome of bacteria in your gut.

When grains are processed into flour, almost all of the starch is digested in the small intestine, leaving nothing for your lower gut bacteria.  If this happens a lot in your body, it results in an imbalance, and bad bacteria can take over and increase your chances of inflammatory diseases or colon cancer.

So, ground whole grains are better than refined because they leave more behind for your gut bacteria, and unprocessed intact whole grains are the best.

What I’ve been saying!  Whole plant-based foods.  They will make you thinner too – harder to overeat on whole grains…

If you want to go even healthier with your breakfast, skip grains that have been ground into flours, and go for intact whole grains – like oatmeal.

 
FOLLOW and SUBSCRIBE to VeganEnvy.com on Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and Facebook!

Get FREE healthy vegan information and recipes!

FOLLOW HERE!

Butternut Squash Apple Galette – Whole-Foods Plant-Based

Whole-foods plant-based Butternut Squash Galette with no-oil. Whole-wheat pastry made with almond flour. Delicious creamy tofu filling with sage, fennel, and apple.

Tahini Roasted Broccoli – Whole-Foods Plant-Based

Toss broccoli in a vegan and gluten-free mixture of tahini, lemon juice, minced garlic, soy sauce, and pepper, then bake for 10 minutes.  
It’s crispy and creamy at the same time.  

Garam Masala Baked Acorn Squash – Stuffed With Cranberry Rice

Deliciously complex, tasty, healthy baked, stuffed acorn squash. Cranberry rice and spinach stuffing, Garam Masala East Indian dessert peppery spice. UNIQUE!

Italian Cornmeal Zucchini Polenta – 20 minutes

Mmmmmm, a bag of cornmeal, a zucchini, oregano, rosemary, and salt and pepper turn into a filling, stick to your ribs, healthy vegan comfort food, tasty polenta plant-based, no-oil, side-dish, so fast, quick, and easy, and tastes wonderful. Best fast vegan dinner side-dish idea!

Green Tomatoes Chickpea Avocado Edamame Rice Salad

Mix Avocado, Fresh Green Tomatoes, Chickpeas, and Edamame Beans for a Creamy Vegan Spread, or Rice Quinoa Salad Bowl. Whole-foods plant-based green goddess recipe. No-oil needed, it’s fat-free but full of natural omega fats to keep your body glowing.

Anti-Inflammation Smoothie – Ginger and Turmeric

Ginger and turmeric have demonstrated significant impacts on reducing pain and inflammation in multiple studies, try them in a vegan green smoothie!

Green Bean Casserole

Turn a classic Thanksgiving green beans side dish, into a delicious low-fat dairy-free whole-foods vegan dish, with lentil gravy, crispy homemade croutons and perfectly cooked green beans.

Gorgeous Vegan Gravy

This smooth, brown, fast, fat-free lentil based vegan gravy reminds us of Thanksgiving dinners, stuffing, and good times at family gatherings. A traditional brown gravy colour, with savoury flavour. Ready in 10 minutes, in the microwave.

Cranberry Apple Coleslaw

Apples, carrots, celery, cranberries, and cabbage are beautiful to look at and are a wonderful combination as well. Making coleslaw in the food processor is so fast and easy.

Creamy Coleslaw Vinaigrette Salad Dressing

This dairy-free no-oil healthy dressing will make your vegan coleslaw shine!  With dates, tofu, rice vinegar, lemon and pecans it is also going to keep you from getting hungry.

Super Summer-Time Pasta Salad

Fast HEALTHY best vegan fat-free PASTA SALAD with BLACK BEANS, corn, green onions, tomatoes, frozen peas and BLACK OLIVES. Low calorie, high vitamin C, HIGH IRON, so GOOD FOR YOU! Families and KIDS love to eat this whole-foods plant-based (wfpb) quick meal.

*Sweet* Sweet Potato Fries – wfpb no-oil

People think you need to coat OVEN FRIES in oil, but THEY DON’T KNOW… try this recipe and you will learn better.  Moist heat escapes and ACTIVATES the seasonings, your fries will be CRISPY, oil-free and full of HEALTHY LOW CALORIE FLAVOUR.

Brussels Sprouts, Quinoa and Lentil Pilaf – Orange Cranberry Apple Sauce

Easy Vegan Quinoa and Lentil Pilaf with Brussels Sprouts and Orange Apple...

Ginger Pear Fruit Crisp – Whole-Foods Plant-Based

Pears make a delicious healthy vegan fruit crumble when baked with oats, almond flour and ground cashews. Try this TASTY whole-foods plant-based kid friendly fat-free no-oil recipe with a ginger lemon twist!

Cool as a Cucumber Vegan Tzatziki – Fat-Free

Use Tofu and apple cider vinegar as a YOGURT SUBSTITUTE to make a dairy-free, no-oil, fat-free, healthy vegan dill and cucumber Greek Tzatziki dip that is refreshing and delicious.

Sweet Zing Orange Thyme Dressing

Healthy OIL-FREE vegan dressing with a SWEET ZING from green onions, apples, and dried cranberries. AWESOME on quinoa and lentils pilaff, and is delicious on BRUSSELS SPROUTS.

Meatless Marinara Sauce With Protein

Healthy Vegan Italian Tomato Pasta Sauce with Whole-Foods Plant-Based Protein and No-Oil. Modernize your marinara by using lentils and chickpeas in a no-oil meatless version that replaces traditional spaghetti sauce.

Satisfying Split-Pea Soup

With PERFECT SEASONINGS, potatoes, barley, and carrots it’s a SO GOOD, fat-free VEGAN SPLIT-PEA SOUP. Better than what you ate as a child! Full of IRON AND VITAMIN A, HEALTHY WHOLE-FOOD PLANT-BASED recipe, LOSE WEIGHT, feel and LOOK FANTASTIC.

Wonderful White Bean and Walnut Sauce with Linguine and Asparagus

If you would like to have a DAIRY-FREE VEGAN WHITE SAUCE for your PASTA, or maybe you are trying to LOSE WEIGHT – here is a WHITE BEAN PESTO SAUCE, it’s a HEALTHY WHOLE-FOOD PLANT-BASED, CREAMY, FAT-FREE recipe.

Healthy No-Oil Vegan Mayonnaise – Salad Dressing and Dip Substitute

Egg-free Oil-free Vegan Mayo Make dressings and creamy dips This is my go-to...

Lovely Lentil and Brown Rice Soup

Vegan lentil and brown rice soup with tomatoes, basil, oregano, onion, garlic, thyme, and zucchini. So easy to make, and clean up, a one pot meal. Aromatic and delicious blend of complex flavours in a hearty and satisfying comforting soup.

Whole Weekend Waffles

It’s EASY to make VEGAN WAFFLES from a box mix. Follow these simple steps to healthy whole grain dairy-free and egg-free waffles.

Zesty Caesar Salad With Croutons – No Oil

HEALTHY FAT-FREE EASY VEGAN CAESAR SALAD with croutons. The ZESTY garlic, and BRIGHT lemon FLAVOURS SHINE in this RECIPE, that is what makes Caesar dressing taste awesome.  GARLIC AND LEMON!

Fiery Vegan Mayo Sauce, No Oil

DELICIOUS VEGANSAUCE. SPICY CHIPOTLE OIL-FREE VEGAN MAYO! Spicy, smoky, dairy-free, eggless, egg-free, chipotle, HEALTHY, fat-free vegan mayo recipe.

Fiery Maple Sweet Potato Bowl, No Oil

COLORFUL sweet potatoes, MAPLE CHIPOTLE chickpeas or tofu, EARTHY mushrooms, VIBRANT greens, CREAMY avocado and a FIERY sauce makes for a SPICY and HEALTHFUL VEGAN MEAL BOWL IDEA!

BEST SLOW COOKER CHILI for a CROWD

This SMOKY VEGAN CHILI recipe LOOKS LIKE IT HAS MEAT, but tastes even better. TAKE THIS TO A PARTY, it is so good, with the best chili spices recipe.

Lazy Vegan Frittata with Spinach, Tofu, Potatoes, and Chickpeas

HEALTHY VEGAN COMFORT FOOD. Vegan Lazy Frittata – Potatoes, Chickpeas, Tofu, Spinach, Peas, Mushrooms – combined in a OIL-FREE creamy mess that is satisfying, NUTRITIOUS, and delicious. FAST vegan meal – dinner recipe is 30 minutes to make.

Green Vegetable Medley Pasta Soup (Dad’s Soup)

Our family’s FAVOURITE VEGAN green vegetable medley DINNER SOUP with PASTA, a wonderful meal soup – combination of green peppers, zucchini, SPINACH, corn and black beans, with basil and oregano, in a hearty, whole foods, no oil, vegetarian dinner soup. Fat free.

Epicure Healthy Tofu Pad Thai (Whole Foods Vegan)

Dinner in 20 minutes. A fast oil free, whole foods vegan Pad Thai recipe with tofu, noodles, and a homemade sriracha sauce, using Epicure Spice mixes. Easy healthy plant-based fat free meal.

Vegan Asparagus Black Bean and Roasted Sweet Potato Salad – No Oil, 30 Minute Dinner

Ready in 30 minutes, this colourful, healthy, vegan dinner salad has roasted sweet potatoes, regular potatoes, asparagus, black beans and a tangy lemon, dijon, green onion, dill dressing. It is a complete meal and will leave you and your loved ones feeling satisfied and full of energy to be your healthy best.

Vegan Lasagna – Tofu & Spinach, Whole Foods Plant Based

Healthy simple vegan whole-foods plant-based lasagna that kids and families love, with no-oil, it uses tofu and spinach as a quick and easy ricotta cheese substitute.

Bok Choy Silken Tofu Noodle Soup (Source of Calcium!)

Bok choy, tofu, carrots, spaghettini noodles, and ginger combined, make an easy, quick, simple, and healthy hearty vegan soup recipe for dinner.

Chocolate Banana Green Smoothie

DELICIOUS, vegan, HEALTHY, sugar-free, DAIRY-FREE, smoothie recipe with COCOA POWDER, banana, dates, spinach, pineapple and soy milk or almond milk or other non-dairy milk. Cocoa powder is full of antioxidants and is iron rich.

Creamy Tofu Pasta Sauce with Garlic, Zucchini & Tomato

FAST, CREAMY, DAIRY-FREE tofu pasta sauce recipe, with soft silken tofu as a milk substitute to make a high protein, nut free, low fat and tasty zucchini, tomato penne pasta sauce.

Cream of Cauliflower and Potato Soup (with Tofu)

EASY, DAIRY-FREE CREAM OF CAULIFLOWER soup WITH SILKEN TOFU AND POTATOES. Make in 45 MIN. Healthy vegan dinner, without oil. Whole foods, plant based, so nutritious!

Easy Crustless Tofu Quiche (Whole Foods Vegan)

REAL VEGANS EAT QUICHE! EASY eggless, dairy-free, baked, vegan brunch, breakfast or dinner casserole. Firm tofu as a vegan egg substitute, best healthy no crust, oil-free, egg-free, whole foods quiche, smells and looks and tastes wonderful.

Irresistible Peanut Butter Cookies

PERFECT LITTLE CROWD PLEASERS, vegan and gluten free oat cookies, but packed with BIG PEANUT BUTTER FLAVOUR! Healthy, no-oil, fat-free, whole-foods plant-based easy fast coconut sugar.

Indian Palak Paneer (Spinach, Tofu and Eggplant) Side Dish

15 min easy AWESOME healthy Indian SPINACH side dish recipe using FROZEN OR FRESH, fast FAT-FREE vegan dinner idea, DAIRY-FREE, tofu paneer substitute/replacement, cook eggplant, tasty onion, fresh tomato, garlic, ginger, SPICES. Serve meal with rice or potatoes.

Easy Vegan Chocolate Bean Brownies (Oil Free with Dates)

Easy, moist, fudgy, VEGAN, whole-foods, gluten-free, BEAN brownies. Use white beans, cocoa powder, blended oats, dates, and fruit, in a food-processor, for perfect, chocolate, healthy, rich, brownies everyone will love. FAT-FREE, HIGH FIBER, HEALTHY, DAIRY-FREE, EGG-FREE, AWESOME!

FAST No-Rise Healthy Whole Wheat Pizza Dough (oil-free vegan)

Make FAST, FAT-FREE, WHOLE WHEAT FLOUR, HEALTHY, NO-RISE, VEGAN PIZZA DOUGH, in your food processor. Perfect, crispy and soft. Roll out, place toppings, and bake in 10 minutes. Fat-free, healthy, moist, no-oil, THE BEST. KIDS LOVE THIS CRUST!

What my IBS Symptoms Were Like – Before I Went Vegan

As an omnivore, my IBS symptoms included alternating diarrhea and constipation, acid indigestion, doctor’s tests, depression, stomach and intestinal pain, fatigue and weight loss.

How to Judge the Healthiness of Grain Products

Trying to decide what kind of bread is healthiest to buy?  What granola bar, cookie, snack food, or what pancake mix is best? Use these 2 tips to increase your resistance to diseases like cancer. Learn what to look for on the nutrition label.

Eating Whole Foods Plant-Based Vegan With IBS

Fix, cure, and treat IBS with a whole-foods plant-based vegan diet, what to do if you still have IBS and you are vegan, or a vegan diet makes IBS worse, eat a low-FODMAP vegan diet to successfully treat IBS.

Why No Oil on a Whole Foods Plant-Based Diet?

We haven’t used oil in our kitchen since 2013 and I recommend you don’t either, starting now. This post outlines the reasons.

That Meat is Not Giving You Muscle

Getting protein from animal products isn't as satisfying as you think Many...

How to Stir, Use, and Store Natural Peanut Butter – and Why It is SO MUCH BETTER

Natural Peanut Butter What is natural peanut butter?  It is peanut butter that...

Eating Nuts Daily Did Not Cause Weight Gain – It Caused Weight Loss!

Did you know that adding nuts didn't make people gain weight? In over 20...

How to Eat Vegan for Energy and Weight Loss – For Adults and Kids

RECOMMENDED PRINCIPLES of the VeganEnvy DIET AND LIFESTYLE – how to eat whole foods plant based healthy vegan without oil TO LOSE WEIGHT, stay skinny, have great skin, and be FULL OF ENERGY, and how to move to STOP BACK PAIN and keep your ENTIRE body feeling great.

Mission Statement for VeganEnvy

I created VeganEnvy to be a fun, relevant, engaging, social and helpful place for you to belong.

Great Tofu Recipe Ideas For Dinner

Looking for fast, simple, easy, and the best tofu recipe ideas for dinner? Here is a list of healthy, family friendly tofu recipes with soft, silken, medium, firm and extra firm tofu options that taste delicious, and are great healthy, no oil, vegan meals.
Eating these tofu recipes will make you and your loved ones lose weight and fight disease – guaranteed.

What You Need to Know About Seaweed and Iodine for Vegan Nutrition

Iodine – how much do you need and how should you get it? Everyone needs iodine, but it’s especially important for vegans. Find out how much iodine you need daily to prevent goiter/goitre and the best sources in foods.

What Is Tofu? | All About Tofu, Nutrition, Benefits, Protein, Types, Ingredients, Health

ALL YOUR TOFU QUESTIONS ANSWERED – learn about tofu taste, nutrition, what tofu is made of, protein content, fiber, benefits, controversy, GMO, soybeans, calories, fat, and is tofu healthy. Plus how to choose, buy, press, and prepare soft, silken, and firm tofu.

 

JOIN the VeganEnvy.com Community 

VeganEnvy.com Facebook Group

Click here to EXPLORE

Get surrounded by vegan LOVE.  

 

Healthy Vegan is Trending!

Please, help others, and our planet – share this content on social media!

SaveSave

Eating Whole Foods Plant-Based Vegan With IBS

Treating IBS With a Whole-foods Plant-based Vegan Diet

No Animal Products – No Meat, No Dairy – What Impact on IBS?

In 2013, just before my 40th birthday my husband and I watched the Forks Over Knives documentary (link to trailer) on Netflix.  It was scientifically based and gave many compelling reasons to follow a whole foods plant based diet for health.  

I was worried about cancer because I had skin cancer once already and my mother had uterine cancer so I decided to give going vegan a try with my husband and kids.  I wasn’t really thinking much about my IBS.

IBS Symptoms Disappeared for Three Years on a Vegan Diet

Within days of giving up dairy, meat, and oil and eating beans, soy milk and tofu instead, my poops became daily and regular – once a day, first thing in the morning – and I stopped having diarrhea.  No more diarrhea meant no more intestinal cramping pain.  NO MORE PAIN.  No more constipation, less gas, my abdomen stopped being swollen and became nice and flat. The improvement was amazing.  

As I write this now, years later, I can barely remember what those cramps felt like, and it was such a regular occurrence in my life before I went vegan.  That was a big change and huge relief for me.  Acid indigestion, bloating, and any other digestive problems were replaced by a good healthy feeling in my stomach and intestines.  

After a year plant based I no longer needed probiotics.  I only needed them after drinking alcohol as a reset.  I ate foods with gluten and wheat regularly like pasta and bread and I had no ill effects as long as I also ate lots of fruits and vegetables and beans and no margerine, oils, or animal products.

Going whole foods plant-based was the best 40th birthday present I could have given myself.  Before I started eating whole foods plant based I had constant IBS related stress and worry about what I should eat and how I would feel afterwards.  

This post describes What my IBS Symptoms Were Like – Before I Went Vegan

My IBS Came Back in the 4th Year of a Vegan Diet 🙁

In August of 2017 I started experiencing digestive issues again.

For three years I followed a whole-foods plant-based diet and had rare to no IBS related issues, it was wonderful, but my IBS came back, and I was able to figure out a management plan and control my IBS symptoms while on a vegan diet.

How to Deal with IBS and Controlling IBS Symptoms On a Vegan Diet 🙂

I created a low-FODMAP vegan meal plan with an elimination phase, and with the help of digestive enzymes and probiotics, and creative recipes, I have re-introduced and eat FODMAP containing foods.  

I now follow a vegan diet with moderate FODMAPs, and I don’t suffer from digestive problems.

I am working on meal plans to help people with IBS follow a healthy whole-foods plant-based vegan diet.

This post describes how my IBS symptoms returned and what I did to manage them on a Vegan diet.

Eating Vegan With IBS Is Possible and Enjoyable

What I experience from eating only whole plants, is a dramatic improvement in my physical well-being.  I believe plants have prevented me from developing Ulcerative Colitis, which I’m sure would have eventually occurred as my stressed out intestines got older.  

I believe my plant based diet will protect me from Crohn’s Disease – which I am at risk for because my father has it – he is in remission now, after he became a mostly whole foods vegan three years ago as well.   

I notice so many people around me complaining about indigestion and about their kids’ digestive issues.   The solution is available – high fibre whole plants.

My digestive and other health improvements have affected me so much, I’m inspired to build VeganEnvy.com to spread plant-based information to help and teach others who are still struggling with IBS, whether you are vegan or not.

I am keenly aware of the plight of animals now, and how our consumption of meat and dairy is not good for the planet.  I hope to help people, animals, and our environment.

If You Have IBS You Can Eat Vegan

I hope writing this is helpful to others.  I don’t talk about my bowel health in everyday situations.  But, if I don’t tell my story, people won’t know about the incredible digestive benefits of a whole foods plant-based vegan diet and how you can be a vegan and control your IBS.

I am adding more low-FODMAP vegan recipes to this site to help people who are still struggling with IBS symptoms on a vegan diet.  You can find my low-FODMAP recipes from the sidebar on the recipes page, click on the Low FODMAP tag.

I’m hoping my veganenvy.com website and materials will reach people who get stomach aches, bloating, diarrhea, painful cramps and acid indigestion.  I hope people will use my experiences and information to decide to shift to plant based eating too, so they can feel better.

Click here, if you want to find out more about my specific diet – I call it the VeganEnvy Diet.

 
FOLLOW and SUBSCRIBE to VeganEnvy.com on Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and Facebook!

Get FREE healthy vegan information and recipes!

FOLLOW HERE!

 

JOIN the VeganEnvy.com Community 

VeganEnvy.com Facebook Group

Click here to EXPLORE

Get surrounded by vegan LOVE.  

Cool as a Cucumber Vegan Tzatziki – Fat-Free

Use Tofu and apple cider vinegar as a YOGURT SUBSTITUTE to make a dairy-free, no-oil, fat-free, healthy vegan dill and cucumber Greek Tzatziki dip that is refreshing and delicious.

Epicure Healthy Tofu Pad Thai (Whole Foods Vegan)

Dinner in 20 minutes. A fast oil free, whole foods vegan Pad Thai recipe with tofu, noodles, and a homemade sriracha sauce, using Epicure Spice mixes. Easy healthy plant-based fat free meal.

Zesty Caesar Salad With Croutons – No Oil

HEALTHY FAT-FREE EASY VEGAN CAESAR SALAD with croutons. The ZESTY garlic, and BRIGHT lemon FLAVOURS SHINE in this RECIPE, that is what makes Caesar dressing taste awesome.  GARLIC AND LEMON!

Vegan Lasagna – Tofu & Spinach, Whole Foods Plant Based

Healthy simple vegan whole-foods plant-based lasagna that kids and families love, with no-oil, it uses tofu and spinach as a quick and easy ricotta cheese substitute.

Creamy Tofu Pasta Sauce with Garlic, Zucchini & Tomato

FAST, CREAMY, DAIRY-FREE tofu pasta sauce recipe, with soft silken tofu as a milk substitute to make a high protein, nut free, low fat and tasty zucchini, tomato penne pasta sauce.

Lazy Vegan Frittata with Spinach, Tofu, Potatoes, and Chickpeas

HEALTHY VEGAN COMFORT FOOD. Vegan Lazy Frittata – Potatoes, Chickpeas, Tofu, Spinach, Peas, Mushrooms – combined in a OIL-FREE creamy mess that is satisfying, NUTRITIOUS, and delicious. FAST vegan meal – dinner recipe is 30 minutes to make.

Butternut Squash Apple Galette – Whole-Foods Plant-Based

Whole-foods plant-based Butternut Squash Galette with no-oil. Whole-wheat pastry made with almond flour. Delicious creamy tofu filling with sage, fennel, and apple.

Vegan Asparagus Black Bean and Roasted Sweet Potato Salad – No Oil, 30 Minute Dinner

Ready in 30 minutes, this colourful, healthy, vegan dinner salad has roasted sweet potatoes, regular potatoes, asparagus, black beans and a tangy lemon, dijon, green onion, dill dressing. It is a complete meal and will leave you and your loved ones feeling satisfied and full of energy to be your healthy best.

Green Tomatoes Chickpea Avocado Edamame Rice Salad

Mix Avocado, Fresh Green Tomatoes, Chickpeas, and Edamame Beans for a Creamy Vegan Spread, or Rice Quinoa Salad Bowl. Whole-foods plant-based green goddess recipe. No-oil needed, it’s fat-free but full of natural omega fats to keep your body glowing.

Gorgeous Vegan Gravy

This smooth, brown, fast, fat-free lentil based vegan gravy reminds us of Thanksgiving dinners, stuffing, and good times at family gatherings. A traditional brown gravy colour, with savoury flavour. Ready in 10 minutes, in the microwave.

BEST SLOW COOKER CHILI for a CROWD

This SMOKY VEGAN CHILI recipe LOOKS LIKE IT HAS MEAT, but tastes even better. TAKE THIS TO A PARTY, it is so good, with the best chili spices recipe.

Ginger Pear Fruit Crisp – Whole-Foods Plant-Based

Pears make a delicious healthy vegan fruit crumble when baked with oats, almond flour and ground cashews. Try this TASTY whole-foods plant-based kid friendly fat-free no-oil recipe with a ginger lemon twist!

Fiery Maple Sweet Potato Bowl, No Oil

COLORFUL sweet potatoes, MAPLE CHIPOTLE chickpeas or tofu, EARTHY mushrooms, VIBRANT greens, CREAMY avocado and a FIERY sauce makes for a SPICY and HEALTHFUL VEGAN MEAL BOWL IDEA!

Indian Palak Paneer (Spinach, Tofu and Eggplant) Side Dish

15 min easy AWESOME healthy Indian SPINACH side dish recipe using FROZEN OR FRESH, fast FAT-FREE vegan dinner idea, DAIRY-FREE, tofu paneer substitute/replacement, cook eggplant, tasty onion, fresh tomato, garlic, ginger, SPICES. Serve meal with rice or potatoes.

Cranberry Apple Coleslaw

Apples, carrots, celery, cranberries, and cabbage are beautiful to look at and are a wonderful combination as well. Making coleslaw in the food processor is so fast and easy.

Vegan Parmesan Cheese

Fast and easy delicious vegan parmesan cheese replacement uses nuts, garlic, and nutritional yeast. It is the best dairy-free, and lactose-free cheese sprinkle substitute I have found.

Wonderful White Bean and Walnut Sauce with Linguine and Asparagus

If you would like to have a DAIRY-FREE VEGAN WHITE SAUCE for your PASTA, or maybe you are trying to LOSE WEIGHT – here is a WHITE BEAN PESTO SAUCE, it’s a HEALTHY WHOLE-FOOD PLANT-BASED, CREAMY, FAT-FREE recipe.

Green Vegetable Medley Pasta Soup (Dad’s Soup)

Our family’s FAVOURITE VEGAN green vegetable medley DINNER SOUP with PASTA, a wonderful meal soup – combination of green peppers, zucchini, SPINACH, corn and black beans, with basil and oregano, in a hearty, whole foods, no oil, vegetarian dinner soup. Fat free.

Meatless Marinara Sauce With Protein

Healthy Vegan Italian Tomato Pasta Sauce with Whole-Foods Plant-Based Protein and No-Oil. Modernize your marinara by using lentils and chickpeas in a no-oil meatless version that replaces traditional spaghetti sauce.

Green Bean Casserole

Turn a classic Thanksgiving green beans side dish, into a delicious low-fat dairy-free whole-foods vegan dish, with lentil gravy, crispy homemade croutons and perfectly cooked green beans.

Satisfying Split-Pea Soup

With PERFECT SEASONINGS, potatoes, barley, and carrots it’s a SO GOOD, fat-free VEGAN SPLIT-PEA SOUP. Better than what you ate as a child! Full of IRON AND VITAMIN A, HEALTHY WHOLE-FOOD PLANT-BASED recipe, LOSE WEIGHT, feel and LOOK FANTASTIC.

Creamy Coleslaw Vinaigrette Salad Dressing

This dairy-free no-oil healthy dressing will make your vegan coleslaw shine!  With dates, tofu, rice vinegar, lemon and pecans it is also going to keep you from getting hungry.

Anti-Inflammation Smoothie – Ginger and Turmeric

Ginger and turmeric have demonstrated significant impacts on reducing pain and inflammation in multiple studies, try them in a vegan green smoothie!

Lovely Lentil and Brown Rice Soup

Vegan lentil and brown rice soup with tomatoes, basil, oregano, onion, garlic, thyme, and zucchini. So easy to make, and clean up, a one pot meal. Aromatic and delicious blend of complex flavours in a hearty and satisfying comforting soup.

Tahini Roasted Broccoli – Whole-Foods Plant-Based

Toss broccoli in a vegan and gluten-free mixture of tahini, lemon juice, minced garlic, soy sauce, and pepper, then bake for 10 minutes.  
It’s crispy and creamy at the same time.  

Bok Choy Silken Tofu Noodle Soup (Source of Calcium!)

Bok choy, tofu, carrots, spaghettini noodles, and ginger combined, make an easy, quick, simple, and healthy hearty vegan soup recipe for dinner.

Whole Weekend Waffles

It’s EASY to make VEGAN WAFFLES from a box mix. Follow these simple steps to healthy whole grain dairy-free and egg-free waffles.

Healthy Aqua Faba Vegan Chocolate Birthday Cake: Fat-Free, Whole Wheat

PLANT-BASED WHOLE-FOODS! Tall, light and fluffy, awesome and delicious, oil-free, CHOCOLATE layer cake, with a vegan frosting filling. Uses whole-wheat flour and zucchini, low-fat, dairy-free, perfect for birthdays, KIDS LOVE THIS CAKE, tasty and moist. wfpb

Easy Crustless Tofu Quiche (Whole Foods Vegan)

REAL VEGANS EAT QUICHE! EASY eggless, dairy-free, baked, vegan brunch, breakfast or dinner casserole. Firm tofu as a vegan egg substitute, best healthy no crust, oil-free, egg-free, whole foods quiche, smells and looks and tastes wonderful.

Italian Cornmeal Zucchini Polenta – 20 minutes

Mmmmmm, a bag of cornmeal, a zucchini, oregano, rosemary, and salt and pepper turn into a filling, stick to your ribs, healthy vegan comfort food, tasty polenta plant-based, no-oil, side-dish, so fast, quick, and easy, and tastes wonderful. Best fast vegan dinner side-dish idea!

Chocolate Banana Green Smoothie

DELICIOUS, vegan, HEALTHY, sugar-free, DAIRY-FREE, smoothie recipe with COCOA POWDER, banana, dates, spinach, pineapple and soy milk or almond milk or other non-dairy milk. Cocoa powder is full of antioxidants and is iron rich.

Brussels Sprouts, Quinoa and Lentil Pilaf – Orange Cranberry Apple Sauce

Easy Vegan Quinoa and Lentil Pilaf with Brussels Sprouts and Orange Apple...

Super Summer-Time Pasta Salad

Fast HEALTHY best vegan fat-free PASTA SALAD with BLACK BEANS, corn, green onions, tomatoes, frozen peas and BLACK OLIVES. Low calorie, high vitamin C, HIGH IRON, so GOOD FOR YOU! Families and KIDS love to eat this whole-foods plant-based (wfpb) quick meal.

*Sweet* Sweet Potato Fries – wfpb no-oil

People think you need to coat OVEN FRIES in oil, but THEY DON’T KNOW… try this recipe and you will learn better.  Moist heat escapes and ACTIVATES the seasonings, your fries will be CRISPY, oil-free and full of HEALTHY LOW CALORIE FLAVOUR.

Fiery Vegan Mayo Sauce, No Oil

DELICIOUS VEGANSAUCE. SPICY CHIPOTLE OIL-FREE VEGAN MAYO! Spicy, smoky, dairy-free, eggless, egg-free, chipotle, HEALTHY, fat-free vegan mayo recipe.

FAST No-Rise Healthy Whole Wheat Pizza Dough (oil-free vegan)

Make FAST, FAT-FREE, WHOLE WHEAT FLOUR, HEALTHY, NO-RISE, VEGAN PIZZA DOUGH, in your food processor. Perfect, crispy and soft. Roll out, place toppings, and bake in 10 minutes. Fat-free, healthy, moist, no-oil, THE BEST. KIDS LOVE THIS CRUST!

Healthy No-Oil Vegan Mayonnaise – Salad Dressing and Dip Substitute

Egg-free Oil-free Vegan Mayo Make dressings and creamy dips This is my go-to...

Cream of Cauliflower and Potato Soup (with Tofu)

EASY, DAIRY-FREE CREAM OF CAULIFLOWER soup WITH SILKEN TOFU AND POTATOES. Make in 45 MIN. Healthy vegan dinner, without oil. Whole foods, plant based, so nutritious!

Sweet Zing Orange Thyme Dressing

Healthy OIL-FREE vegan dressing with a SWEET ZING from green onions, apples, and dried cranberries. AWESOME on quinoa and lentils pilaff, and is delicious on BRUSSELS SPROUTS.

Irresistible Peanut Butter Cookies

PERFECT LITTLE CROWD PLEASERS, vegan and gluten free oat cookies, but packed with BIG PEANUT BUTTER FLAVOUR! Healthy, no-oil, fat-free, whole-foods plant-based easy fast coconut sugar.

Great Tofu Recipe Ideas For Dinner

Looking for fast, simple, easy, and the best tofu recipe ideas for dinner? Here is a list of healthy, family friendly tofu recipes with soft, silken, medium, firm and extra firm tofu options that taste delicious, and are great healthy, no oil, vegan meals.
Eating these tofu recipes will make you and your loved ones lose weight and fight disease – guaranteed.

Eating Whole Foods Plant-Based Vegan With IBS

Fix, cure, and treat IBS with a whole-foods plant-based vegan diet, what to do if you still have IBS and you are vegan, or a vegan diet makes IBS worse, eat a low-FODMAP vegan diet to successfully treat IBS.

How to Judge the Healthiness of Grain Products

Trying to decide what kind of bread is healthiest to buy?  What granola bar, cookie, snack food, or what pancake mix is best? Use these 2 tips to increase your resistance to diseases like cancer. Learn what to look for on the nutrition label.

What You Need to Know About Seaweed and Iodine for Vegan Nutrition

Iodine – how much do you need and how should you get it? Everyone needs iodine, but it’s especially important for vegans. Find out how much iodine you need daily to prevent goiter/goitre and the best sources in foods.

How to Stir, Use, and Store Natural Peanut Butter – and Why It is SO MUCH BETTER

Natural Peanut Butter What is natural peanut butter?  It is peanut butter that...

What my IBS Symptoms Were Like – Before I Went Vegan

As an omnivore, my IBS symptoms included alternating diarrhea and constipation, acid indigestion, doctor’s tests, depression, stomach and intestinal pain, fatigue and weight loss.

Why No Oil on a Whole Foods Plant-Based Diet?

We haven’t used oil in our kitchen since 2013 and I recommend you don’t either, starting now. This post outlines the reasons.

How to Eat Vegan for Energy and Weight Loss – For Adults and Kids

RECOMMENDED PRINCIPLES of the VeganEnvy DIET AND LIFESTYLE – how to eat whole foods plant based healthy vegan without oil TO LOSE WEIGHT, stay skinny, have great skin, and be FULL OF ENERGY, and how to move to STOP BACK PAIN and keep your ENTIRE body feeling great.

That Meat is Not Giving You Muscle

Getting protein from animal products isn't as satisfying as you think Many...

Mission Statement for VeganEnvy

I created VeganEnvy to be a fun, relevant, engaging, social and helpful place for you to belong.

Eating Nuts Daily Did Not Cause Weight Gain – It Caused Weight Loss!

Did you know that adding nuts didn't make people gain weight? In over 20...

What Is Tofu? | All About Tofu, Nutrition, Benefits, Protein, Types, Ingredients, Health

ALL YOUR TOFU QUESTIONS ANSWERED – learn about tofu taste, nutrition, what tofu is made of, protein content, fiber, benefits, controversy, GMO, soybeans, calories, fat, and is tofu healthy. Plus how to choose, buy, press, and prepare soft, silken, and firm tofu.

Why No Oil on a Whole Foods Plant-Based Diet?

Image of bottles of various coloured oils.

Why No Oil Cooking?

I find people are very curious about why we don’t use oil in our cooking, many have never even considered the idea.  People think oil is good for them, but when I ask them what bad things happen to a person who stops eating oil, they don’t have any answers!

We haven’t used oil in our kitchen since 2013 and I recommend you don’t either, starting now.

This post outlines the reasons.

Oil is not natural – it was a food, then we strip almost all the nutrients out.

Oil is the opposite of a whole food.  It is one of the most processed things you can eat.

What is left in oil is: too many calories, harmful inflammatory properties, and artery clogging sludge.  It is bad stuff.

To make cooking oil, companies take 1000’s of whole food items – like beautiful olives or corn or coconut – and crush them, strip out the fibre, the color, the phytonutrients, the taste,  the protein, the carbs, until we are left only with the fat. Nutrient empty fat.

Image of green and red whole olives.

1 tablespoon of olive oil is equal to about 45 olives, and very little vitamins and minerals.  It takes more than 1300 olives to make a 32 ounce bottle of olive oil. Why not just eat the olives instead?  Then you get all the nutrients in the whole-food package – the way nature intended.

You are WAAAY better off to blend or add olives, seeds or nuts to your cooking, than to add oils.  

Eating whole foods gives us little doses of the fats we need, in low-calorie amounts, and healthy disease preventing packages, that our body recognizes and can use to make us healthy.

The fat that makes up oil is not shelf stable, so we process it more.

Oil would go bad within days, so companies process it more to make it last longer – altering it’s chemical makeup again.  Making it less natural and less of a food our body can benefit from.

You have probably heard of Trans Fats?  They are not safe for human consumption.

  • Natural trans fats occur in ALL meat and dairy products.  Bet you didn’t know that…
  • Artificial trans fats are created by bubbling hydrogen gas through vegetable oil, to make it solid at room temperature and give a longer shelf life.

Trans Fats are killers, for every 2 percent of your daily calories that come from trans fat, your risk of heart disease increases by 23 percent.

Artificial trans Fats were banned in New York City restaurants in 2006, and the food industry has until 2018 to remove artificial trans fats from all packaged foods sold in the USA.

Please, don’t tell yourself your oil is ok because it is not very processed.

If oil is not as processed – like cold pressed, unprocessed, bottled in glass, and stored away from heat and light, these types of oil “once ingested and warmed to body temperature disintegrate even faster… they bind with cells and interfere with every chemical reaction in the body.  The results are hormone imbalances, inflammation and all kinds of illness.” Physiologist Ray Peat

Oil consumption leads to inflammation in your blood.

You can’t always judge health by how fit or thin a person looks.

  • A study published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition found that a high fat diet raised inflammatory proteins in the blood by 25%, even though the study subjects lost weight.
  • Subjects who lost the same amount of weight, but ate low-fat and high-carb, lowered their inflammatory blood protein levels by 43 percent.
  • High inflammation leads to disease including heart disease and cancer.

Image of blood flowing through a blood vessel.

Oil causes plaque and clogging in your blood vessels.

Studies have shown that blood flow decreases drastically for many hours after a fatty meal.

Bringham and Women’s Hospital researchers reported, after studying more than 2,000 cardiac patients. the risk of heart attack jumps by 400 percent immediately following a heavy, fat-rich meal.

In the Mediterranean, people who ate the most olive oil, were far more likely to have heart disease.

Crete University found that subjects who ate the most olive oil, had the most heart disease.

Olive oil is NOT heart healthy.  

People are healthier on a Mediterranean diet because of eating more vegetables, not because of oil.

Oil suppresses your immune system.

According to the National Institutes of Health – making you vulnerable to infections. and reduces your body’s ability to stop the growth of cancer cells.

No oil is safe.

Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn says: “oil is the gateway to vascular disease”.  Cardiovascular disease leads to a shorter life, and lower quality of life, due to problems like strokes, dementia, heart attacks, erectile dysfunction, and a number of other degenerative diseases.

Multiple studies have found that eating all oils – including saturated (coconut, animal fat, dairy), monounsaturated (olive, canola, peanut, avocado oil) and polyunsaturated (flax oil) increased artery plaque that leads to heart attacks.

It doesn’t matter whether it is olive oil, corn oil, coconut oil, canola oil, flax oil, fish oil, or any other kind – avoid ALL oil.  Oil hurts you from the inside.

Image of a heart disease bypass operation.

Plant-based foods contain fats!

Whole foods bring multiple benefits to our insides, oil only brings harm.  So why eat oil?  There is no good reason.  Instead of oil, eat a whole plant.

All plant-based foods contain healthy essential fats – just like they have protein and carbohydrates. For example, Oats – 16% fat  Kale – 11% fat  Grapes – 9% fat.

Please – dump out your oils and never buy them again! 🙂

Image of a heart with heartbeat line.

For a great source about oils and why eating a whole foods plant based diet is so good for you, look at any of the Engine 2 books, by Rip Esselstyn – he is great at explaining nutrition concepts in easy language, and cites all the sources for the research.  His family has eaten this way since the 1980s and they are thriving too.

US Amazon

Canada Amazon

Check out the whole-foods no oils Recipes my family eats here.  Whole foods taste awesome, and give you all the fats your body requires to glow, and shine, and grow, and be moisturized!

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

 
FOLLOW and SUBSCRIBE to VeganEnvy.com on Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and Facebook!

Get FREE healthy vegan information and recipes!

FOLLOW HERE!

Check Out These Other Recipes

Meatless Marinara Sauce With Protein

Healthy Vegan Italian Tomato Pasta Sauce with Whole-Foods Plant-Based Protein and No-Oil. Modernize your marinara by using lentils and chickpeas in a no-oil meatless version that replaces traditional spaghetti sauce.

Satisfying Split-Pea Soup

With PERFECT SEASONINGS, potatoes, barley, and carrots it’s a SO GOOD, fat-free VEGAN SPLIT-PEA SOUP. Better than what you ate as a child! Full of IRON AND VITAMIN A, HEALTHY WHOLE-FOOD PLANT-BASED recipe, LOSE WEIGHT, feel and LOOK FANTASTIC.

Fiery Vegan Mayo Sauce, No Oil

DELICIOUS VEGANSAUCE. SPICY CHIPOTLE OIL-FREE VEGAN MAYO! Spicy, smoky, dairy-free, eggless, egg-free, chipotle, HEALTHY, fat-free vegan mayo recipe.

Bok Choy Silken Tofu Noodle Soup (Source of Calcium!)

Bok choy, tofu, carrots, spaghettini noodles, and ginger combined, make an easy, quick, simple, and healthy hearty vegan soup recipe for dinner.

Vegan Lasagna – Tofu & Spinach, Whole Foods Plant Based

Healthy simple vegan whole-foods plant-based lasagna that kids and families love, with no-oil, it uses tofu and spinach as a quick and easy ricotta cheese substitute.

Anti-Inflammation Smoothie – Ginger and Turmeric

Ginger and turmeric have demonstrated significant impacts on reducing pain and inflammation in multiple studies, try them in a vegan green smoothie!

Chocolate Banana Green Smoothie

DELICIOUS, vegan, HEALTHY, sugar-free, DAIRY-FREE, smoothie recipe with COCOA POWDER, banana, dates, spinach, pineapple and soy milk or almond milk or other non-dairy milk. Cocoa powder is full of antioxidants and is iron rich.

Vegan Parmesan Cheese

Fast and easy delicious vegan parmesan cheese replacement uses nuts, garlic, and nutritional yeast. It is the best dairy-free, and lactose-free cheese sprinkle substitute I have found.

Tahini Roasted Broccoli – Whole-Foods Plant-Based

Toss broccoli in a vegan and gluten-free mixture of tahini, lemon juice, minced garlic, soy sauce, and pepper, then bake for 10 minutes.  
It’s crispy and creamy at the same time.  

Butternut Squash Apple Galette – Whole-Foods Plant-Based

Whole-foods plant-based Butternut Squash Galette with no-oil. Whole-wheat pastry made with almond flour. Delicious creamy tofu filling with sage, fennel, and apple.

Brussels Sprouts, Quinoa and Lentil Pilaf – Orange Cranberry Apple Sauce

Easy Vegan Quinoa and Lentil Pilaf with Brussels Sprouts and Orange Apple Cranberry Thyme Sauce...

Lovely Lentil and Brown Rice Soup

Vegan lentil and brown rice soup with tomatoes, basil, oregano, onion, garlic, thyme, and zucchini. So easy to make, and clean up, a one pot meal. Aromatic and delicious blend of complex flavours in a hearty and satisfying comforting soup.

Cool as a Cucumber Vegan Tzatziki – Fat-Free

Use Tofu and apple cider vinegar as a YOGURT SUBSTITUTE to make a dairy-free, no-oil, fat-free, healthy vegan dill and cucumber Greek Tzatziki dip that is refreshing and delicious.

Italian Cornmeal Zucchini Polenta – 20 minutes

Mmmmmm, a bag of cornmeal, a zucchini, oregano, rosemary, and salt and pepper turn into a filling, stick to your ribs, healthy vegan comfort food, tasty polenta plant-based, no-oil, side-dish, so fast, quick, and easy, and tastes wonderful. Best fast vegan dinner side-dish idea!

Green Bean Casserole

Turn a classic Thanksgiving green beans side dish, into a delicious low-fat dairy-free whole-foods vegan dish, with lentil gravy, crispy homemade croutons and perfectly cooked green beans.

Cranberry Apple Coleslaw

Apples, carrots, celery, cranberries, and cabbage are beautiful to look at and are a wonderful combination as well. Making coleslaw in the food processor is so fast and easy.

Lazy Vegan Frittata with Spinach, Tofu, Potatoes, and Chickpeas

HEALTHY VEGAN COMFORT FOOD. Vegan Lazy Frittata – Potatoes, Chickpeas, Tofu, Spinach, Peas, Mushrooms – combined in a OIL-FREE creamy mess that is satisfying, NUTRITIOUS, and delicious. FAST vegan meal – dinner recipe is 30 minutes to make.

Indian Palak Paneer (Spinach, Tofu and Eggplant) Side Dish

15 min easy AWESOME healthy Indian SPINACH side dish recipe using FROZEN OR FRESH, fast FAT-FREE vegan dinner idea, DAIRY-FREE, tofu paneer substitute/replacement, cook eggplant, tasty onion, fresh tomato, garlic, ginger, SPICES. Serve meal with rice or potatoes.

Vegan Asparagus Black Bean and Roasted Sweet Potato Salad – No Oil, 30 Minute Dinner

Ready in 30 minutes, this colourful, healthy, vegan dinner salad has roasted sweet potatoes, regular potatoes, asparagus, black beans and a tangy lemon, dijon, green onion, dill dressing. It is a complete meal and will leave you and your loved ones feeling satisfied and full of energy to be your healthy best.

Gorgeous Vegan Gravy

This smooth, brown, fast, fat-free lentil based vegan gravy reminds us of Thanksgiving dinners, stuffing, and good times at family gatherings. A traditional brown gravy colour, with savoury flavour. Ready in 10 minutes, in the microwave.

Healthy No-Oil Vegan Mayonnaise – Salad Dressing and Dip Substitute

Egg-free Oil-free Vegan Mayo Make dressings and creamy dips This is my go-to vegan mayo...

Wonderful White Bean and Walnut Sauce with Linguine and Asparagus

If you would like to have a DAIRY-FREE VEGAN WHITE SAUCE for your PASTA, or maybe you are trying to LOSE WEIGHT – here is a WHITE BEAN PESTO SAUCE, it’s a HEALTHY WHOLE-FOOD PLANT-BASED, CREAMY, FAT-FREE recipe.

FAST No-Rise Healthy Whole Wheat Pizza Dough (oil-free vegan)

Make FAST, FAT-FREE, WHOLE WHEAT FLOUR, HEALTHY, NO-RISE, VEGAN PIZZA DOUGH, in your food processor. Perfect, crispy and soft. Roll out, place toppings, and bake in 10 minutes. Fat-free, healthy, moist, no-oil, THE BEST. KIDS LOVE THIS CRUST!

Epicure Healthy Tofu Pad Thai (Whole Foods Vegan)

Dinner in 20 minutes. A fast oil free, whole foods vegan Pad Thai recipe with tofu, noodles, and a homemade sriracha sauce, using Epicure Spice mixes. Easy healthy plant-based fat free meal.

Fiery Maple Sweet Potato Bowl, No Oil

COLORFUL sweet potatoes, MAPLE CHIPOTLE chickpeas or tofu, EARTHY mushrooms, VIBRANT greens, CREAMY avocado and a FIERY sauce makes for a SPICY and HEALTHFUL VEGAN MEAL BOWL IDEA!

Green Vegetable Medley Pasta Soup (Dad’s Soup)

Our family’s FAVOURITE VEGAN green vegetable medley DINNER SOUP with PASTA, a wonderful meal soup – combination of green peppers, zucchini, SPINACH, corn and black beans, with basil and oregano, in a hearty, whole foods, no oil, vegetarian dinner soup. Fat free.

Garam Masala Baked Acorn Squash – Stuffed With Cranberry Rice

Deliciously complex, tasty, healthy baked, stuffed acorn squash. Cranberry rice and spinach stuffing, Garam Masala East Indian dessert peppery spice. UNIQUE!

*Sweet* Sweet Potato Fries – wfpb no-oil

People think you need to coat OVEN FRIES in oil, but THEY DON’T KNOW… try this recipe and you will learn better.  Moist heat escapes and ACTIVATES the seasonings, your fries will be CRISPY, oil-free and full of HEALTHY LOW CALORIE FLAVOUR.

Creamy Coleslaw Vinaigrette Salad Dressing

This dairy-free no-oil healthy dressing will make your vegan coleslaw shine!  With dates, tofu, rice vinegar, lemon and pecans it is also going to keep you from getting hungry.

Super Summer-Time Pasta Salad

Fast HEALTHY best vegan fat-free PASTA SALAD with BLACK BEANS, corn, green onions, tomatoes, frozen peas and BLACK OLIVES. Low calorie, high vitamin C, HIGH IRON, so GOOD FOR YOU! Families and KIDS love to eat this whole-foods plant-based (wfpb) quick meal.

Easy Crustless Tofu Quiche (Whole Foods Vegan)

REAL VEGANS EAT QUICHE! EASY eggless, dairy-free, baked, vegan brunch, breakfast or dinner casserole. Firm tofu as a vegan egg substitute, best healthy no crust, oil-free, egg-free, whole foods quiche, smells and looks and tastes wonderful.

Ginger Pear Fruit Crisp – Whole-Foods Plant-Based

Pears make a delicious healthy vegan fruit crumble when baked with oats, almond flour and ground cashews. Try this TASTY whole-foods plant-based kid friendly fat-free no-oil recipe with a ginger lemon twist!

Cream of Cauliflower and Potato Soup (with Tofu)

EASY, DAIRY-FREE CREAM OF CAULIFLOWER soup WITH SILKEN TOFU AND POTATOES. Make in 45 MIN. Healthy vegan dinner, without oil. Whole foods, plant based, so nutritious!

Healthy Aqua Faba Vegan Chocolate Birthday Cake: Fat-Free, Whole Wheat

PLANT-BASED WHOLE-FOODS! Tall, light and fluffy, awesome and delicious, oil-free, CHOCOLATE layer cake, with a vegan frosting filling. Uses whole-wheat flour and zucchini, low-fat, dairy-free, perfect for birthdays, KIDS LOVE THIS CAKE, tasty and moist. wfpb

Zesty Caesar Salad With Croutons – No Oil

HEALTHY FAT-FREE EASY VEGAN CAESAR SALAD with croutons. The ZESTY garlic, and BRIGHT lemon FLAVOURS SHINE in this RECIPE, that is what makes Caesar dressing taste awesome.  GARLIC AND LEMON!

Sweet Zing Orange Thyme Dressing

Healthy OIL-FREE vegan dressing with a SWEET ZING from green onions, apples, and dried cranberries. AWESOME on quinoa and lentils pilaff, and is delicious on BRUSSELS SPROUTS.

BEST SLOW COOKER CHILI for a CROWD

This SMOKY VEGAN CHILI recipe LOOKS LIKE IT HAS MEAT, but tastes even better. TAKE THIS TO A PARTY, it is so good, with the best chili spices recipe.

Creamy Tofu Pasta Sauce with Garlic, Zucchini & Tomato

FAST, CREAMY, DAIRY-FREE tofu pasta sauce recipe, with soft silken tofu as a milk substitute to make a high protein, nut free, low fat and tasty zucchini, tomato penne pasta sauce.

Green Tomatoes Chickpea Avocado Edamame Rice Salad

Mix Avocado, Fresh Green Tomatoes, Chickpeas, and Edamame Beans for a Creamy Vegan Spread, or Rice Quinoa Salad Bowl. Whole-foods plant-based green goddess recipe. No-oil needed, it’s fat-free but full of natural omega fats to keep your body glowing.

Whole Weekend Waffles

It’s EASY to make VEGAN WAFFLES from a box mix. Follow these simple steps to healthy whole grain dairy-free and egg-free waffles.

Irresistible Peanut Butter Cookies

PERFECT LITTLE CROWD PLEASERS, vegan and gluten free oat cookies, but packed with BIG PEANUT BUTTER FLAVOUR! Healthy, no-oil, fat-free, whole-foods plant-based easy fast coconut sugar.

Easy Vegan Chocolate Bean Brownies (Oil Free with Dates)

Easy, moist, fudgy, VEGAN, whole-foods, gluten-free, BEAN brownies. Use white beans, cocoa powder, blended oats, dates, and fruit, in a food-processor, for perfect, chocolate, healthy, rich, brownies everyone will love. FAT-FREE, HIGH FIBER, HEALTHY, DAIRY-FREE, EGG-FREE, AWESOME!

Check Out the VeganEnvy Diet

How to Stir, Use, and Store Natural Peanut Butter – and Why It is SO MUCH BETTER

Natural Peanut Butter What is natural peanut butter?  It is peanut butter that has a simple list...

How to Eat Vegan for Energy and Weight Loss – For Adults and Kids

RECOMMENDED PRINCIPLES of the VeganEnvy DIET AND LIFESTYLE – how to eat whole foods plant based healthy vegan without oil TO LOSE WEIGHT, stay skinny, have great skin, and be FULL OF ENERGY, and how to move to STOP BACK PAIN and keep your ENTIRE body feeling great.

Why No Oil on a Whole Foods Plant-Based Diet?

We haven’t used oil in our kitchen since 2013 and I recommend you don’t either, starting now. This post outlines the reasons.

Mission Statement for VeganEnvy

I created VeganEnvy to be a fun, relevant, engaging, social and helpful place for you to belong.

That Meat is Not Giving You Muscle

Getting protein from animal products isn't as satisfying as you think Many people struggle to quit...

Great Tofu Recipe Ideas For Dinner

Looking for fast, simple, easy, and the best tofu recipe ideas for dinner? Here is a list of healthy, family friendly tofu recipes with soft, silken, medium, firm and extra firm tofu options that taste delicious, and are great healthy, no oil, vegan meals.
Eating these tofu recipes will make you and your loved ones lose weight and fight disease – guaranteed.

What Is Tofu? | All About Tofu, Nutrition, Benefits, Protein, Types, Ingredients, Health

ALL YOUR TOFU QUESTIONS ANSWERED – learn about tofu taste, nutrition, what tofu is made of, protein content, fiber, benefits, controversy, GMO, soybeans, calories, fat, and is tofu healthy. Plus how to choose, buy, press, and prepare soft, silken, and firm tofu.

Eating Whole Foods Plant-Based Vegan With IBS

Fix, cure, and treat IBS with a whole-foods plant-based vegan diet, what to do if you still have IBS and you are vegan, or a vegan diet makes IBS worse, eat a low-FODMAP vegan diet to successfully treat IBS.

Eating Nuts Daily Did Not Cause Weight Gain – It Caused Weight Loss!

Did you know that adding nuts didn't make people gain weight? In over 20 clinical trials about...

How to Judge the Healthiness of Grain Products

Trying to decide what kind of bread is healthiest to buy?  What granola bar, cookie, snack food, or what pancake mix is best? Use these 2 tips to increase your resistance to diseases like cancer. Learn what to look for on the nutrition label.

What You Need to Know About Seaweed and Iodine for Vegan Nutrition

Iodine – how much do you need and how should you get it? Everyone needs iodine, but it’s especially important for vegans. Find out how much iodine you need daily to prevent goiter/goitre and the best sources in foods.

What my IBS Symptoms Were Like – Before I Went Vegan

As an omnivore, my IBS symptoms included alternating diarrhea and constipation, acid indigestion, doctor’s tests, depression, stomach and intestinal pain, fatigue and weight loss.

 

JOIN the VeganEnvy.com Community 

VeganEnvy.com Facebook Group

Click here to EXPLORE

Get surrounded by vegan LOVE.  

 

Healthy Vegan is Trending!

Please, help others, and our planet – share this content on social media!

That Meat is Not Giving You Muscle

Today is the perfect day to start eating plant-based.

Getting protein from animal products isn’t as satisfying as you think

Many people struggle to quit eating meat because they think it has a positive influence on their life. There are two common positives that get cited: meat builds muscle and provides more energy that plants.

But neither is true.

For one, muscle is built from resistance to stress, not what you eat.  Meatless athletes are muscular!  The more you do with your muscles, the larger they will be.

Then there is the extra energy that animal protein supposedly provides. Think about how you feel after a large turkey dinner, or an all you can eat buffet with cheese and ice cream – like you need to lie down!  Your body struggles to process animal proteins and fat.  With that struggle comes stomach aches, indigestion and weight gain from too many calories.  Whole foods plant based meals do not make you feel like taking a nap!  The only reason a person feels like meat and dairy provide energy is because that is the only way they know how to eat.

Once you realize that there are no positives to eating animals, the appeal of meat and dairy dips, and changing to plant-based becomes a lot easier.

For more on how to plan plant-based meals, read the post: How to Eat Vegan for Energy and Weight Loss – For Adults and Kids and check out these Whole Foods Plant Based Recipe Ideas.

Image of David Carter NFL Defensive Lineman - You don't have to take a life to gain muscle - vegan diet supports muscle.

 

Healthy Vegan is Trending!

Please, help others, and our planet – share this content on social media!

How to Stir, Use, and Store Natural Peanut Butter – and Why It is SO MUCH BETTER

Natural Peanut Butter

What is natural peanut butter?  It is peanut butter that has a simple list of ingredients that includes –

1) peanuts and

2) nothing else.

Some natural nut butters may have salt added, but truly natural peanut butter will have no other oils, sugars, flours, salt or preservatives in it.

Natural peanut butters can be chunky or smooth, just like processed peanut butter, and may be organic, or not organic, depending on the peanuts used.  Organic is not the same as 100% peanut butter. .

Natural peanut butter has not been processed to make the oil a solid, oil will separate out at room temperature.

Why Use Natural Peanut Butter and Nut Butters?

Once you start eating natural peanut butter, the processed kind will taste like FAKE FOOD – a pastey, sugary, candy, floury, weird substance.

Processed peanut butter reminds me of frosting/icing or what is inside of Reese’s pieces candies.  More like candy than peanuts.

Natural peanut butter has a richer peanut taste and more peanuts per spoonful because it has no fillers.  It tastes real.

Over 20 studies found that eating a small amount of whole nuts daily made people lose weight.  Read more about how adding a handful of whole nuts a day can make you feel so satisfied that you eat less.  Nut butter worked too.

 

Natural Peanut Butter is a Whole Food

Natural peanut butter has not been hydrogenated – chemically processed at high temperatures to change the molecular structure of the oil, and stop the oil from separating.

Processed peanut butters contain added sugars, flours, and oils you don’t need.

Natural nut butter is simply real peanuts, or almonds, or seeds, or cashews etc. and none of the original nutrients from the nuts have been stripped out or altered.

Whole foods are better for us, our bodies know what to do with them.

 

Hydrogenated Oils are Man-made and Contain Dangerous Trans Fats

We should all avoid harmful artificial trans fats, used to hydrogenate vegetable oils into a solid.

Trans fats raise the risk of heart disease, increase bad cholesterol levels and reduce good cholesterol levels.

Governments are banning trans fats to protect us.

However, with trans-fat nutrition-labeling rules, products labeled “0 trans fats” can still contain up to half a gram of trans fat per serving.

You can assume that “trans-free” processed peanut butter still contains a small amount of trans fat if partially hydrogenated oil is listed as an ingredient.

Avoid processed peanut butters and save your body from trans fats.

 

 

Cookies Made with Natural Peanut Butter

Check out my recipe for Irresistible Peanut Butter Cookies.

Natural peanut butter works as a great egg substitute for binding ingredients. 

Cookies made with nut butters won’t need oil or margerine, the natural peanut oils make them perfectly chewy, and they usually don’t stick to the cookie sheet.

 

JOIN the VeganEnvy.com Community 

VeganEnvy.com Facebook Group

Click here to EXPLORE

Get surrounded by vegan LOVE.  

Other Natural Nut Butters

The natural idea applies to more than peanuts – you can find natural almond, cashew, other nuts, and seed butters too.

 Before Opening, Store Natural Peanut Butter Upside Down

Store the beautiful natural nut butter container upside down in your cupboard.

Depending how solid the nut mass is, most of the oil will rise to the bottom.  That sounds confusing, but it makes sense!

How to Stir Natural Peanut Butter

Later, when you open the nut butter, turn the jar upright and stir it with a long tool that reaches to the bottom of the container – I use a stainless steel non-serrated table knife with a dull edge and a rounded point.

The oil will rise up through, as you stir, and you can combine the peanut solids with the oil – like they were in the original peanut.

I would like to invent a nut butter stirring machine… my husband Greg and I discuss the design.  Trouble is it will bounce all around unless it is secured to something.

You Can Dump Some of the Oil Out to Make it Low Fat

If you are watching your fat intake, you can pour some oil out of the peanut butter before you stir, but leave enough oil so that the peanut butter is spreadable and easy to work with, rather than hard and dry.

It takes some muscles to stir natural peanut butter, and it is an inconvenience but, think how good it is for your arm!

If you have stored your peanut butter upside down then oil won’t slosh out the top of the container when you stir, because most of the oil will be trapped at the bottom of the jar, under the peanut butter.

Also, your peanut butter won’t be a brick at the bottom of the container, the oil will be at the bottom instead.  You can stir up the solids without having to dig to the bottom.

After Opening, Store Natural Peanut Butter in the Fridge

Once you have mixed the nut solids and the oils, into a creamy, spreadable state, store the jar in the fridge.

The cold will stop the oil from separating back out, the mixture will be semi-solid, but soft enough to spread.

I hope these tips are useful, and encourage you to try natural nut butters, another step towards whole foods! ?

 

 
FOLLOW and SUBSCRIBE to VeganEnvy.com on Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and Facebook!

Get FREE healthy vegan information and recipes!

FOLLOW HERE!

 

Healthy Vegan is Trending!

Please, help others, and our planet – share this content on social media!

Eating Nuts Daily Did Not Cause Weight Gain – It Caused Weight Loss!

Did you know that adding nuts didn’t make people gain weight?

In over 20 clinical trials about nuts and weight, they confirmed adding nuts to people’s daily food intake did not cause weight gain.  Not a single one showed the weight gain they were expecting, by adding nuts to people’s diets without asking them to adjust in any other way.

In fact most participants lost weight when they started eating a handful or two of nuts, or spoonful of nut butter a day.

Researchers discovered a couple reasons:

1) people are more satisfied and eat less after the nut snack,

2) nuts increased metabolism, so people were burning more fat while resting.

Eating nuts can help prevent heart attacks and extend your life.

Both men and women can expect  lower rates of heart disease with nuts, because nutrients found in nuts help prevent heart attacks. 

The Harvard Nurse’s Health Study found eating nuts and seeds instead of animal products is a contributor for living a longer life.

Dr. Gregor from nutritionfacts.org found up to 55% of men and 68% of women who die from a sudden heart attack, had no clinically recognized heart disease before their sudden death.

So, start to eat healthier right now, today – before a heart attack happens to you or your loved ones – and you have no time left to change your food.

We should definitely include nuts and seeds in our regular routine!

VeganEnvy Diet Guidelines for Eating Nuts

This is what works great for us!

Eat 1 – 2 oz of nuts daily depending on your height.

1 oz of nuts a day is enough for a short female (I am 5′ 3″) like me, up to 2 oz a day is reasonable for a 6 foot tall male and growing children.

Think of putting nuts or seeds in a shot glass – that is 1.5 oz.  Not much, right?  It is all you need.

More than 1 – 2 oz of nuts or seeds daily will cause weight gain, unless you are exercising more.

Nuts and seeds are 80% healthy fat and are very high in calories, we can overdo it (and gain weight) with nuts and seeds, if we eat so many that we are going way beyond our daily calorie needs.

Good news is:  Nuts Don’t Cause Expected Weight Gain, when people in the studies added a handful or two daily – but, we should not eat more than that unless we are trying to fatten up.

Image of peanuts in a bowl on a counter

Natural Nut Butter and Peanuts Are Equivalent

Natural peanut butter (the only ingredients are nuts – no added sugar, oils, flour etc.) had the same no-weight-gain results as whole peanuts.

Scientists wondered if whole nuts pass through our systems as not chewed, or harder to absorb.

They compared weight gain from eating the same calories in both peanut butter and peanuts, and the lack of weight gain was the same.

If you are not used to it, see more about How to Use Natural Peanut Butter here.

 
FOLLOW and SUBSCRIBE to VeganEnvy.com on Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and Facebook!

Get FREE healthy vegan information and recipes!

FOLLOW HERE!

Eat Nuts or Seeds Daily – Make it Part of Your Routine

I choose to eat a tablespoon of nuts or seeds with my breakfast.  Hemp seeds are one of my favourites.

Eating nuts with breakfast reduces my hunger for longer.  If I forget to put nuts on my breakfast, I will get hungry within a couple of hours.  Just a few nuts or seeds means I can go longer without eating, and when I do eat I am not ravenous.

Sometimes, I also eat nuts for bedtime snack, like a spoon of nut or seed butter and dip fruit in it.  I like almond butter, peanut butter, cashew and seed butter and I also might snack on a handful (3 – 5 nuts) of walnuts or pecans, with fruit or a small amount of dried fruit.

When can you fit a handful of nuts into your day?

Occasionally Use Nuts and Seeds Instead of Beans/Tofu/Tempeh in Cooking

If I make a meal with no beans, I will use nuts, or seeds, instead of beans, to keep us satisfied.  Nut based sauces are high calorie so I serve nuts with a lot of vegetables and leafy greens to keep the meal calorie balanced.

For Example:

Dinner

Usually once a week, I will make a beans/tofu/tempeh free dinner, or add nuts or seeds with less beans in a meal.

  • Spaghetti casserole with a walnut, basil, spinach pesto sauce (we call it Monster Pie).
  • Thai noodles with vegetables – use a peanut satay sauce.
  • Cashew cheese pasta sauce.
  • Pasta tomato sauce with blended beans and seeds.

Lunch  

  • Salads – add chia seeds to my homemade salad dressings.
  • Sandwiches – nut spread

Breakfast

  • Add a heaping tablespoon of hemp seeds per person in our whole grain waffle recipe.
  • Add a spoonful of nuts or seeds to every breakfast that doesn’t have tofu or beans.

Now – go make some Irresistible Peanut Butter Cookies with this in mind!

Image of vegan peanut butter cookies on a cookie sheet

Irresistible Peanut Butter Cookies

Tell me, how are you and your family getting daily nuts and seeds?  🙂

 

JOIN the VeganEnvy.com Community 

VeganEnvy.com Facebook Group

Click here to EXPLORE

Get surrounded by vegan LOVE.  

 

Healthy Vegan is Trending!

Please, help others, and our planet – share this content on social media!

How to Eat Vegan for Energy and Weight Loss – For Adults and Kids

Funny vegan meme with Dr. Evil from Austin Powers laughing. "How vegans react when we see food pyramids."

How to Eat a Healthy Vegan Diet and Be Thin and Active – For Adults and Children

The following recommendations are based on hours of research on the latest scientific findings about human populations and measurable effects of diet on longevity and health, from leading plant based medical doctors.

Plus, we have used trial and error of different types of meals/proportions and recommend this daily eating guide, based on how we feel ourselves, how much energy we have, how much we weigh, and what our kids want to eat.

Image of an active vegan family at a lake.

When we first went whole foods vegan we lost weight very quickly, results are immediate.

You can expect the same.  Greg lost 20 lbs down to 190 lbs and I lost 6 lbs down to 122 lbs in 4 weeks.  I especially noticed weight loss on my upper arms, around my ribs and my legs.  I bet we lost a lot of fat around our internal organs too, fat there is really unhealthy.

Over the last couple years, we started eating a bit too much starch,

my husband had gained weight (even as a vegan) back up to 210 lbs and I was feeling low energy, but still weighed about 122 lbs.

Increasing our dark leafy greens resulted in fast weight loss and higher energy.

In April of 2017 we discovered Dr. Furhman’s recommendations and increased the proportion of the most nutritious vegetables (leafy greens) eating those instead of as much whole grains.

My husband went from 210 lbs to 193 lbs in 4 weeks eating more dark leafy vegetables.

I went from 122 lbs to 115 lbs, and my energy levels went way, way up.

 

Based on our trials and experience since 2013, I share our vegan eating tips with you.

For us the key to staying vegan is to remain focused on our health goals and environmental goals.

It’s really quite easy to stay whole foods vegan because our stomachs feel so much better, and if we eat animal products we don’t feel good.

Use these pie chart proportions to plan the best way to eat vegan, for lots of energy, and to lose and maintain weight without effort.

We are still gradually losing weight eating the following way (unless we get lazy and eat a bunch of restaurant meals, or buy a packaged snack).

I expect I might stabilize around 112lbs and Greg around 185lbs – right at the weights Dr. Furman recommends for our heights for maximum life span.

Studies show skinny people live longer.

Adult Meal = Greens + Fruit or Vegetable + A Little Starch + A Little Protein

Use the percentages in the adult vegan proportions pie chart as a guideline for a single day.

For adults, think about meals as firstly being composed of a vegetable (lunch and supper) or fruit (breakfast), then add a little whole grain starch and some protein or nuts with a no oil dressing/sauce/spices.

If you want to lose weight really quickly, and actually increase your energy, start most adult lunch and supper meals with a plate of dark leafy greens, like spinach. Pile the meal (made of vegetables, starch, and protein) on top.  Have a fruit for a bedtime snack.

Beans are the perfect protein because they are the right amount of protein and carbs.  You can eat vegetables and beans with no starch and get lots of energy.  This makes a great lunch.  Typically we will add a bit of starch at dinner, because it tastes great.

Kids Meal = Starch + Vegetable or Fruit + A Little Protein

Use the percentages in the children vegan proportions pie chart as a guideline for a single day.

For kids, because they need more energy, and can resist some vegetables and resistant to sauces that give calories, think about kids meals as first being composed of a whole grain starch such as potatoes, brown rice, whole wheat bread, whole grain pasta, corn, or quinoa.

Then fill 1/3 the plate with vegetables or fruit and 1/4 with a protein.  Most kids love tofu and plain beans and lemon juice as a sauce.

I get my kids to eat dark leafy greens by including spinach or bok choy in soup, pizza sauce, and spaghetti sauce.  Especially in soup.  We eat soup once a week for supper plus lunch leftovers.  They enjoy plain romaine lettuce, but we are working on salads more than that.  It is a work in progress.

My kids love plain broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, sweet potatoes, carrots and cabbage.  They really love plain vegetables.  So they eat vegetables every dinner and most lunches as leftovers.  Our conflicts usually come from the fact that Greg and I want spices and sauces on our meals, the kids don’t.

Our kids eat whole grain cereal (Cheerios, Mini Wheats) with unsweetened soy milk for weekday breakfast, and whole grain waffles with loads of berries on top on weekends.

They like fruit and smoothies and toast with fruit for snacks.

General Guidelines – Follow These to Be a Healthy Whole Foods Plant Based Vegan

Eat only whole plant based foods.

As much as possible, choose “whole foods” – which means not altered from how it grew.

Olives instead of olive oil, an apple instead of apple juice.  Beans instead of protein powder or vegan nuggets.

For pasta, rice, oatmeal, and bread, whole grain instead of refined.  Whole wheat instead of white flour, brown rice, brown pasta, stone ground oats, or quick cooking oats, quinoa, barley, cornmeal.

Whole grains are the whole grain kernel with the bran, germ, and endosperm intact. Refined grains started out as whole grains, but then are processed to give them a finer texture and longer shelf life. During processing, the bran and germ are removed, which also removes dietary fiber, iron, and many B vitamins.

Edamame soy beans are better than tempeh which is better than tofu which is better than soy milk.

Image of Comparison of Calorie Density and volume it takes in the stomach. What 500 calories looks like of oil, cheese, meat, potatoes, rice and beans and fruits and veggies.

Choose a rainbow of colours.

Try for some green and cruciferous vegetables daily.  Start adult lunch and supper meals with a plate of leafy greens. Pile the meal on top.  Eat a variety of fruits and vegetables over the course of a week, and over a month.

 

Image of Hippocrates quote on fresh vegetables: "Let Food Be Thy Medicine and Medicine Be Thy Food."

Choose foods that have the most nutrition per calorie.

This is the secret to high energy.  Vegetables have the highest nutrition per calorie.

Only eat foods that contain fibre.

Animal products contain no fibre. Processed foods with oils added often have reduced fibre.

High fibre ensures wonderful digestive regularity and health, poop once a day, no bloating, no acid indigestion, never diarrhoea, and no smelly gas.

Funny vegan meme, spraying air freshener: "When a meat eater uses your bathroom."

Cook supper at home most of the time.

Eat leftovers for lunch.  Entertain company often.  Our house, our food.

Avoid processed food and drinks.

No soda pop, no candy bars, or candy.  No purchased bags of snacks. Limited juice.

Drink tea.

Especially green tea. Glorious tea.

Do not cook with or use oils, margarine, or any added fats.

All veganEnvy recipes are no oil, fat-free.  Oils reduce arterial function and cause inflammation inside our bodies, plus they clog up our blood vessels leading to heart disease, erectile dysfunction, stroke, alzheimers, obesity and dementia.

Use dried dates/fruit instead of sugars and syrups.

Sugar (even less processed sugar, like brown sugar, honey and maple syrup) cause inflammation, dried fruits repair it.

Eat every two hours and take snacks with you everywhere you go.

Keep your body running and humming by continuously feeding it healthy nutrition filled fibre.  Take an apple, or orange, or yellow pepper or carrots or a banana with you if you run errands.  Have nuts and dried fruit in your desk drawer or whole grain fig newton type snacks for emergencies.  Choose whole fruits as snacks in between meals as much as you can.

Schedule a daily 3:00 green smoothie to stay energized throughout the afternoon and then you won’t get too hungry before dinner.

Image of Vegan meme: "Vegans be like: "It's ok, I brought my own." With many stacked containers full of food.

Eat vegan

Eat no animal products, no dairy, no fish, no eggs, no poultry, no beef.  No cheese, no sour cream, no yogurt.  If came from an animal do not eat it.

Image of bunny with vegan quote: "Animals are our friends, we don't eat our friends."

Don’t stress out about organic and GMO

You don’t need to eat organic or non GMO to get serious benefits and results from a plant based diet.

The health benefits of a diet rich in fruits and vegetables outweigh the risks of pesticide exposure.  We buy much of our produce in bulk at Costco, a good portion is organic, but not all of it.  The highest concentrations of pesticides are in animals, because they eat a lot of plants and it concentrates in them.  You are avoiding that.

Be flexible (go out and have fun!)

Accept that society makes it hard for children to eat vegan, (think birthday parties, school snacks, friends houses, kids menus) we let the kids pick what they eat when they are not in our house.  This usually means they eat animal products once or twice a week.

Eat added oils in restaurants, but try to avoid them.  Research in advance and choose restaurants with better healthy low fat vegan choices.

Drink low to moderate amounts of alcohol.

on some weekends.  Ok, sometimes we drink high amounts of alcohol, but we notice we recover quicker now that we are plant based, so hopefully we aren’t damaging our bodies too much!

Drink soy milk.

We used to drink Almond milk, but I feel more energetic after soy milk,  and I want the kids to get the protein from their drinks, so that is what we drink.

Take B12 and Vitamin D,

but no other supplements.

Exercise daily.

Typical examples for us include walking, Beachbody workout videos, jumping on our trampoline, swimming, watersports.

Practice body alignment exercises daily.

As we got older, we started suffering from aches and pains caused by our computer desk lifestyles.

The Pain Free book by Pete Egoscue gave us a way to simply manage muscular-skeletal issues from toes to top of our head, with simple exercises you can do while watching TV.  Changed my life.

Eat a bedtime snack.

My favourite is a whole fruit (oranges, apples are great) and a glass of low fat soy milk (about 70 calories per cup and 6g protein).  I can wake up in the night if I don’t have some protein (beans, nuts or soy milk) before bed.  If I have my protein snack I sleep soundly through the night.

If I do wake up, I drink a glass of soy milk and it puts me right back to sleep.

The rest of my family just likes fruit as their bedtime snack.  This habit ensures they get fruit every day.

Eat Spices

Use as many different spices as you can on every single meal.  Spices are concentrated plants and we are just learning about all the phytonutrients and benefits spices convey.

For example, 1 tsp daily of ginger powder totally works as a pain killer, especially for headaches and menstrual cramps.  Try it!

Questions?

Please, let me know what you think and if you are confused about any of these recommendations in the comments!

NEW VeganEnvy.com Facebook Group 

VeganEnvy.com Facebook Group

VeganEnvy.com Facebook Group

Check it out! JOIN, recommend to vegan friends, this community is a vegan safe place to chat, joke, and share and make vegan friends.

With no annoying pictures of non-vegan food, surrounded by vegan LOVE.  

What's Special About VeganEnvy Recipes?  

VeganEnvy recipes are easy, low-fat, whole-foods, plant-based and nutrition rich.  Real food my family eats, and techniques we use to cook.

I choose ingredients that are proven to prevent and reverse disease, based on scientific studies, such as those reviewed on nutritionfacts.org and findings published by whole-foods plant-based (WFPB) experts featured in the Forks Over Knives (FOK) and What the Health documentaries FOK trailer.

Eating VeganEnvy recipes will make you lose weight, look better, feel better and live longer.  PLUS spend your money to cruelty free food systems, cut your environmental impact, and likely increase your compassion for, and awareness of, lives other than your own.

 
FOLLOW and SUBSCRIBE to VeganEnvy.com on Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and Facebook!

Get FREE healthy vegan information and recipes!

FOLLOW HERE!

 

Healthy Vegan is Trending!

Please, help others, and our planet – share this content on social media!

What You Need to Know About Seaweed and Iodine for Vegan Nutrition

Vegan sushi made with seaweed

Iodine – how much do you need and how should you get it?

Everyone needs iodine, but it’s especially important for vegans, since many healthy plant foods like flax, soy, and broccoli have compounds, which can interfere with thyroid function in people with not enough iodine intake, and cause goiter/goitre (British spelling) a swelling of the neck because of enlargement of the thyroid gland.

Does that mean you shouldn’t eat these “goitrogenic” foods? Definitely not, they have too many other benefits for you (preventing cancer and fibre, for example).

You just need to get the right amount of iodine in your diet.

If you cook with salt, then use iodized salt, instead of using natural sea salt, and you’ll probably get all the iodine you need.

Iodized salt contains 71 mcg of iodine in 1.5 g (approx 1/4 teaspoon) of iodized salt.

But what about whole foods vegans who avoid salt and oil?

If, for good reason, you don’t add salt to your food you need to get your iodine somewhere.

 

 

The best source of iodine is sea vegetables – or you can get it in iodized salt, or in a multivitamin.

Nori Seaweed Package
Laver Nori Nutrition Facts

7 grams of this dried seaweed has 70% of a person’s daily iodine needs.

Don’t cook with iodized salt? Seaweed is a good tasty option for getting iodine.

This table from the World Health Organization lists the recommended dietary allowances for iodine.

Crumbled dried nori seaweed

I urge you to get some dried, oil free, nori seaweed and start adding it to your meals, both for taste and for iodine.

Seaweed is especially tasty in soup.  Try my Bok Choy Tofu Soup, it calls for seaweed.

Dried seaweed adds a salty, base flavour and it is good for you, more than just for iodine.   Studies have shown seaweed inhibits human cancer cell growth, this video outlines a study where scientists found seaweed may have therapeutic potential for liver cancer.

Also, sea vegetables have lots of B vitamins and minerals – particularly iodine.

Just don’t overdo it with the seaweed.

Iodine Upper Limit Daily Intake

A problem with seaweed is: we can get too much iodine.

 

The World Health Organization places the safe upper limit for iodine at 1,000 micrograms a day for adults and 90 – 120 mcg for kids (depending on age).

 

Eating 300 micrograms or so of iodine could be too much for a five-year-old.

 

Make sure you and your family are within the daily limits for iodine by checking the seaweed label.

 

A little seaweed goes a long way as far as flavour is concerned, by adding a small amount to some of your meals you will find it is quite easy to get the amount of iodine you need, without going over.

What Is Tofu? | All About Tofu, Nutrition, Benefits, Protein, Types, Ingredients, Health

Curious about tofu? Here is some information compiled from quality sources about how food manufacturers make tofu, what ingredients go into tofu, and how to choose, buy, and prepare the different types of tofu varieties.

Learn about tofu taste, nutrition, protein content, fiber, benefits, calories, and is tofu healthy or not??

Knowledge is power!

Table of Contents

What is Tofu Made of?

Tofu is made from mature white soybeans.

The beans have been soaked in water, ground up and cooked and then filtered to make a milk.

How Long Have People Been Eating Tofu?

There is written evidence to show that soymilk existed in China by 82 AD, and may have existed several centuries before that time. Evidence about tofu is less clear.

A theory is that tofu was invented about 2000 years ago by a Chinese cook who accidentally curdled soy milk when he added nigari seaweed as part of salting it.

Types of Tofu

There are two types of tofu: Regular and Silken.

 

Regular Tofu

Regular Tofu

Regular Tofu

Curdled milk. To make Regular (harder) tofu the milk is curdled and then the liquid is pressed out of it.

This is much the same way that traditional dairy cheese is made by curdling and solidifying milk.

The liquid (whey) is discarded, and the curds are pressed to form a cohesive bond. Regular tofu is also called soybean curd or bean curd and comes in different hardness varieties.

Silken Tofu

Uncurdled milk.

To make Silken (softer) tofu the soymilk is coagulated without curdling the milk.

It is left unpressed and because curds never form, Silken tofu has a smooth and silky appearance.

Silken Tofu

Silken Tofu

How is Tofu Made?

Here is a description of the process to produce tofu, from a video that shows one manufacturer in detail.

Soy Beans (the seeds that grow in the pods of the soy bean plant) are soaked in water, as they absorb the water they double in size and soften.

Soaked and Dry Soybeans

The swollen beans are are crushed and filtered to make a soy soup / slurry.

The ‘soup’ is transformed into a paste by being cooked in a steam cooker for a few minutes.

Then, a spinner separates the milk from the pulp (called soy meal).

The soy meal pulp goes off to be sold for cattle and pet food, the milk stays behind to be transformed into tofu.

While still hot the milk goes into a coagulation tank to be thickened into curd.

It is at this point that flavors may be added.

A coagulant like calcium sulfate, magnesium sulfate, or traditionally nigari is added to the soy milk along with water to activate it.

After about 15 minutes the milk congeals into soybean curd = tofu.

Nigari is the dried liquid (mostly magnesium chloride) that remains after common table salt has been removed from seawater.

Once curdled the soymilk it is still hot and soggy and is run through a filter to drain it as much as possible.

soybeans in tray
 
FOLLOW and SUBSCRIBE to VeganEnvy.com on Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and Facebook!

Get FREE healthy vegan information and recipes!

FOLLOW HERE!

Now the bean curd is relatively dry and is transferred into large trays lined with cheesecloth and pressed, which squeezes out most of the remaining liquid, and molds the tofu into firm large blocks.

Pressing it longer squeezes out more liquid and makes the tofu firmer.

The large blocks are cut to be smaller store sized blocks and are packaged.

To kill any bacteria, packaged blocks are heated for about an hour and then cooled in a cold water bath.

Is Tofu Healthy?  Is Soy Healthy?

The Chinese honored soybeans as one of the five sacred grains essential to the existence of civilization—the others were rice, barley, wheat, and millet.

They considered the soybean to be both a food and a medicine.

Extremely versatile and high in nutrients, soy foods such as soymilk, tofu, miso, and tempeh are all derived from the soybean, a legume that was first cultivated in northern China about 3,000 years ago.

However, the nutritional value of any given soyfood can vary greatly, depending on how it was processed. With only about 164 calories per 4 ounces of firm tofu, tofu is a good, high-protein substitute for meat and whole-milk products.

Tofu is high in fat, with almost 10 grams per 4 ounces, though the fat is mostly unsaturated.

Tofu Nutrition

Tofu is healthy because it is high in protein, is an excellent source of calcium and iron and contains all the essential amino acids your body needs. It is cholesterol free, sodium free, it contains healthy fats, carbs and a wide variety of vitamins and minerals with a low number of calories.

Tofu Contains Many Nutrients

One 3.5-oz (100-gram) serving of tofu contains:

  • Calories: 70 cal.
  • Protein: 8 grams.
  • Carbs: 2 grams.
  • Fiber: 1 gram.
  • Fat: 4 grams.
  • Manganese: 31% of the RDI.
  • Calcium: 20% of the RDI.
  • Selenium: 14% of the RDI.
  • Phosphorus: 12% of the RDI.
  • Copper: 11% of the RDI.
  • Magnesium: 9% of the RDI.
  • Iron: 9% of the RDI.
  • Zinc: 6% of the RDI.

Several national dietary guidelines, including Canada’s Food Guide, recommend soy foods as part of a healthy diet.

Protein

Did you know?  Soy beans contain 40% protein, more than double the protein in beef or fish.  

Fat

Tofu contains the healthy Omega-3 fat, 2 grams for 1 1/2 cups of tofu.  Omega-3 fat is an essential fatty acid, the body cannot manufacture it, and it is required for health.  Omega-3 fats are anti-inflammatory.

Studies have shown that consuming tofu regularly instead of meat and dairy results in significantly lower total cholesterol, triglycerides, and low density lipoprotein (bad cholesterol).  

Calcium

The micronutrient content of tofu varies, depending on the coagulant used to make it. Nigari or magnesium sulfate adds magnesium, calcium sulfate increases the calcium content.  

Check the ingredients list for calcium sulphate, and read the Nutrition Facts table to see how much calcium is in the tofu. Different brands may have different amounts of calcium.

Calcium found in plant foods and milk

Source: Book: The Engine 2 Seven Day Rescue Diet – author Rip Esselstyn

Tofu Recipe Ideas

 

Take a look at some of our favourite dinner tofu recipes.

Other Benefits of Tofu

Isoflavones are compounds found in soy products, and they are known to exert direct and indirect antioxidant effects. Isoflavones can directly scavenge free radicals, thereby preventing premature aging.  These beneficial compounds also prevent the effects of free radicals indirectly by suppressing phagocyte radical production.

Tofu contains fibre, which greatly contributes to digestive health – animal products contain zero fibre.

Health Controversy

Breast cancer awareness ribbon

Breast cancer awareness ribbon

There has been controversy about soy and breast cancer.   The medical community was warning women with breast cancer to avoid soy because of plant oestrogens in it.  

Contrary to this advice, the latest studies are finding that soy is preventative for breast cancer and also helps people with breast cancer to survive longer.

Recent studies now show that women who have had estrogen-sensitive breast cancers do not need to avoid soy isoflavones.

The latest recommendation for breast cancer patients to consume soy foods is consistent with the fact that breast cancer occurs much less in countries where soy consumption is high.  

What about GMO Tofu?

Is genetically modified soy safe?  The genetically modified beans appear to be safe, but the chemicals sprayed onto them are not.



Farmer spraying crops

Farmer spraying crops

The genetically modified genes in GMO soy were not detectable in the human body, leading researchers to conclude that they are harmless.  Note: genetically modified corn proteins were found in humans, but those were also found to be harmless.

Research has found risks to people may not be from eating a genetically modified plant, but from eating the pesticide residues that were sprayed on the GMO plants.

80% of GMO crops are bioengineered only for pesticide resistance. The top 5 biotech companies are chemical companies that manufacture pesticides.

Monsanto’s Roundup Ready soybeans are the #1 GM crop, genetically engineered to be resistant to the herbicide Roundup—also sold by Monsanto—allowing farmers to spray fields with the Roundup herbicide glyphosate, which then kills the weeds while leaving the soy standing.

Soybean plants in field

Soybean plants in field

Monsanto’s Roundup has been shown to have adverse effects on human placental tissue.

Glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup didn’t seem to have much of a toxic effect on human cells even at high doses, or have much effect on a hormone-regulating enzyme, leading Monsanto-funded reviewers concluded that regardless of what hazards might be alleged based on animal studies, glyphosate is not anticipated to produce adverse developmental and reproductive effects in humans.

But pure glyphosate isn’t sprayed on crops.

The Roundup formulation – which includes a variety of adjuvants and surfactants meant to help the glyphosate penetrate into tissues – was found to be 100 times more toxic than glyphosate itself.

Similar results were found for other major pesticides. It took until 2014, but 8 out of 9 pesticide formulations tested were up to one thousand times more toxic than their so-called active ingredients, so when you just test the isolated chemicals you may not get the whole story.

When the study was repeated with what’s actually sprayed on GMO crops, there were toxic and hormonal effects.

Biohazard symbol

Roundup turned out to be among the most toxic pesticides researchers tested, contrary to a popular belief that RoundUp is harmless.

Thumbs up green

What about conventional non-GMO soy where glyphosate is sprayed on the soil to kill weeds between crop cycles?… No residues on the plants.

What about Organic Soy? No residues.

At this point, steering away from GMO soy because GMO plants are sprayed with a larger dosage of chemical pesticides than non-GMO plants, might make sense.

 

JOIN the VeganEnvy.com Community 

VeganEnvy.com Facebook Group

Click here to EXPLORE

Get surrounded by vegan LOVE.  

Types and Varieties of Tofu and Which Kind of Tofu to Use for Cooking

Tofu in package

Tofu in packages – Medium Firm and Extra Firm

When buying tofu, you must decide what brand and what hardness will be the best tofu for your recipes.  

From soft to extra firm, common tofu textures are broken into two categories: Silken (Soft) and Regular (Firm) Tofu.  

Extra firm tofus are best baked, grilled and in stir-fries, while silken tofu is suitable for sauces, desserts, shakes and salad dressings.

One manufacturer’s Firm tofu may be more or less dense than another’s.

Click on the types below to view information about each variety of tofu, how to prepare the tofu and best uses for each type of tofu.

Silken Tofu

Silken Tofu has the highest water content and resembles pudding or white jello and can be available in soft, firm or extra firm.  

Prep: Just drain if it is stored in water and optionally blot it with a paper towel.

Silken Tofu is good for: Use Silken Tofu for spreads, smoothies, shakes, dips, salad dressings, creamy sauces and some desserts like pie fillings.

You can blend soft silken tofu as a good lactose free substitute for light cream or milk and the firm or extra firm silken tofu varieties are a dairy free replacement for sour cream or yogurt.

Egg Substitute: Silken tofu can also be used as a vegan egg substitute in some baking (depending what the egg was bringing to the recipe).  ¼ cup blended silken tofu = 1 egg.

Extra Soft / Soft Regular Block Tofu

Delicate tofu, can hold it’s shape just barely.  It has a mild milky flavour.

Prep: Pressing soft tofu is not recommended as you will end up squishing it. Just drain if it is stored in water and optionally blot it with a paper towel.

Soft Tofu is good for: Similar applications to Silken Tofu, can be blended and made into sauces and smoothies.  Battering and deep frying, a method that fully envelops the cubes, produces tender nuggets.  Although you will not see any fried recipes on this blog.

Note: Because it has a high water content, soft tofu is not recommended for shallow frying unless you do not use oil, the sputtering and spit-back can be dangerous.

Medium / Medium Firm Regular Tofu

Will hold it’s shape, has a rougher texture than soft and can crack when handled.  Has a droopy appearance due to moisture.

Medium Tofu Prep: Can be gently pressed to reduce water.  It will squish out of it’s shape somewhat easily.  

Medium Tofu is good for: mimicking cottage cheese and ricotta cheeses.  Use in gently simmered soups like miso soup or serve cold.  

Medium Tofu Tips: Add it to your recipe at the end of cooking to reduce breakage and crumbling.

As firmness increases, the cooking time to bake or fry out the excess water goes down.

Firm Tofu

Holds together well, even in a stir fry or recipe where you are stirring a lot.  How well it holds together can change with the brand.  

Firm Tofu Prep: Press firmly to reduce water.

Firm Tofu is good for: Fairly good for stir frys and pan fried tofu.  It will be more moist than extra firm tofu, so do not stir too much, and add at the end of cooking if you can to reduce crumbling.

Extra Firm Tofu

Holds it’s shape very well.  Does not absorb flavours as quickly or easily as softer tofu.  Contains the least amount of water of any tofu.

Extra Firm Tofu Prep: Press to reduce water.

Extra Firm Tofu is good for: Extra firm tofu is the best tofu for making crispy tofu, to bake (like making tofu sticks) or grill.  Excellent for stir frys, glazing and, pan frying.  It can be crumbled and used like ground meat as it will hold up without becoming runny.

Try the different textures to determine what you prefer.  In our house, we buy mostly Extra Firm Regular Tofu and Soft Silken Tofu.  I’ve found the Extra firm will work in almost all recipes, but medium can be too soft for some, such as tofu sticks or stir frys.  However, medium tofu has a more gentle appearance and softer feel when eating, so adds subtlety and variety to recipes.

Chinese Style Tofu is a regular soft tofu (not a silken), often sold in a pillow shaped package.  

Japanese Style Tofu is less compressed (it is a silken) than Chinese Style and is sold in square sided blocks.

Dried Tofu Skin - Also Called Yuba

Yuba is made by lifting and drying the thin layer formed on the surface of heated soymilk once it has cooled.

It has a high protein content and is most commonly found as brittle, brown sheets that must be reconstituted before use.

Once softened, it can be added to stocks, soups, stews, and the like.

Lite Tofu

Lite tofu is lower fat.

What Does Tofu Taste Like?

Tofu alone is relatively tasteless to adults, it is a neutral flavour and mild and bland.  I say adults because for my kids, and all kids we have cooked for, they love the taste of plain tofu, so it must have taste for them!  

To me it tastes mildly bitter, and is not salty, and not sweet and the firmer varieties have a satisfying texture.  The silken variety tastes a bit watery to me and I need to add salt or garlic or onion or some other foods to fill out the flavor of the softer tofus.

Tofu is like a sponge, it absorbs the flavor of whatever it comes into contact with.

How to Prepare Tofu for Cooking

Great!  You have your tofu home, now what are you supposed to do to prepare tofu before you eat it?  

Cut open or tear open your tofu package, if it’s packed in water I like to do this over the sink.  I let the liquid drain out and then I put it on a cutting board, or for the soft silken varieties I cut it into squares right in the package and pull them out right into my blender or food processor with the same dull knife.   

Pay Attention to the Best Before Date on Your Tofu Package

In our house we throw tofu away on the day after the best before date because it seems to start to smell bad and the package swells up very quickly after that date.  

If the package is swollen before this date, it may have gone bad due to lack of proper refrigeration, when in doubt, throw it out.

Open and Drain Your Tofu

You do not need to rinse individually packaged tofu.  Tofu in a sealed package is preservative free and sterile, so there is nothing you are trying to rinse off.

Tofu purchased in bulk could have come in contact with contaminants and should be rinsed off.

How to Press Tofu – Do You Need To?

Because tofu has a high water content, it’s wise to remove excess liquid to make room to absorb new flavors.

That being said, I press my tofu if I want it to be more firm in a recipe, I do not press my tofu if I want it to be moist.

Many recipes call for pressed tofu. How to press tofu:

A quick way to press tofu is to place the tofu on an absorbent paper towel or dish towel and wrap it up around the top.  Place a flat surface on top such as a dish or baking sheet and press on it gently to squeeze water into the towels.

Some people put a dish under the tofu as well and instead of using paper towels tip the dish so the liquid can drain off.  Less waste this way.

Go easy until you know how much pressure to put.  Medium and softer tofu will start to crack and squish out the sides if you put too much pressure.  You can also place a heavy item on top of a plate such as large can of tomatoes and let it sit 5 – 10 minutes while you prep your recipe.

Once it is pressed, pour the water into the sink, you will be left with a drier, more firm tofu block.

Only press medium, firm and extra firm tofu.  Softer varieties will just squish and you will be left with a mess.

How to Cut and Cube Tofu for Baking, Stir Frys and Dipping

After pressing and draining your medium, firm or extra firm tofu, stand it on it’s small end on a cutting board and press a knife down the wide side.  Cut one or two times, so that you get two or three even wide planks from the block depending how many cubes or tofu sticks you want to end up with.

Long sliced firm tofu

Long sliced firm tofu

Fit the tofu planks back together into the block shape and lay them flat like in the package, press a medium or long knife through it lengthwise to make 2 – 3 cuts and long rows.  Turn it and press your knife through 4 – 6 times to make 16 or 24 rectangles or 45 – 84 cubes (if my math is right!).

How to cut tofu into cubes

Cutting tofu into cubes

Adjust the size of your cuts to make larger or smaller cubes or rectangle sticks.  

Raw tofu cubes

Raw tofu cubes

Tip: Don’t cut the cubes too small or the slices too thin. That will lead to the tofu overcooking and becoming hard and brittle rather than moist and crispy.

Rectangle shaped tofu sticks are good for coating, baking, dipping and eating with your fingers.

Small or large cubes are a good shape for tofu in stir frys.  Smaller cubes are easier to divide up to a family as some will be in each scoop of the stir fry.

Flat thin squares increase the surface area for sauce to coat and are a good tofu shape for pan frying or baking in a dish.

How to Prepare Tofu for Salad

You can use baked tofu or raw tofu in a salad.

How to Thaw Frozen Tofu

Frozen tofu can be defrosted in the fridge, microwave, or by boiling it in water.

Take it out the night before and let thaw in the refrigerator.  After it thaws, tofu soaks up marinades more easily since it becomes more porous from the frozen expanded water.  It also changes consistency, and becomes chewier.

After freezing, the curds are so compact and water pockets so enlarged that liquid drains freely from the tofu with a gentle squeeze.

Vegans Don't Just Eat Tofu!

I have a lot of non-tofu recipes on this site too.

Take a look through my recipes page!  Find a whole foods vegan recipe to try!

Tofu Food Safety, Avoid Food Poisoning

Will expired tofu make you sick?

A package of fresh tofu will last 3-5 days beyond the date stamped on the package, depending on it’s preparation method and how the tofu has been stored.

Since the soy liquid is thoroughly heated prior to making tofu, killing most bacteria and viruses in the soy, properly processed and handled tofu is not likely to be contaminated.

It is not common, but there are a few ways tofu could cause foodborne illness. One of these is contamination of the tofu by unclean equipment at the food processing facility.  Another way is  at your house by a food preparer with unwashed hands, sneezing or coughing on foods, or if the tofu touches pathogens from another food, such as raw chicken.

Tofu may also be exposed to pathogens if stored in contaminated water. There are more safety concerns if you will be purchasing tofu sold in bulk.  Tofu stored in a large bin of water could come into contact with unwashed hands or contaminants.  Also, unclean water can infect the entire batch of tofu.

How to Store Tofu

Store your tofu according to the directions on the package, some require refrigeration while others can be stored at room temperature.  

Once opened if you are not using it right away, rinse the tofu, cover it with water and keep it in a refrigerated container. To keep the tofu fresh for up to a week, change the water often.  

Unopened tofu can be frozen in the original package for up to five months.

Store leftovers in your refrigerator promptly, as bacteria grow best when exposed to 40 to 140 degrees Fahrenheit (4.4 – 60 degrees Celsius).

How to Freeze Tofu

I haven’t tried freezing tofu yet.  The next time I have a package that is about to expire I will try it.

My research indicated that if we drain and/or press the tofu first, it won’t be as wet and messy when you thaw it.  But it could become more easily freezer burned.

Apparently, you can freeze the block of tofu whole, or cut it into the sizes you want beforehand and separate them.  The pieces will stick together though, so might not be worth it.

From what I’ve read, freezing separates out almost all the moisture, and turns tofu into a spongy substance that quickly absorbs sauces.

Feel free to let me know what you recommend when it comes to freezing tofu in the comments.

Eating Raw Tofu – Does Tofu Need to be Cooked?

Tofu can be eaten raw.  Soft and silken tofu are great in salad dressings, or as a sour cream or yogurt substitute in dips and spreads.  Regular (harder) tofu can be served raw in salads.  

Some sources recommend that to be safe you boil uncooked tofu for five minutes before eating it.  Personally I am going to ignore this advice.  

We eat raw pieces of tofu when cooking all the time and we use raw silken tofu in dressings and desserts and have never had any stomach issues.

Tofu vs. Tempeh – what is the difference?

Tofu and tempeh are both made from soybeans, but the process is quite different.

Tempeh contains whole soybeans that are aged and cultured and become stuck together into a firm substance that can be sliced.

Tempeh in a vegan bowl

Flavoured Tempeh in a vegan bowl

Tempeh is healthier than tofu because it is closer to the original whole food, it is less processed.  It has a nutty drier texture and a stronger flavour than tofu.

Tempeh

To make tempeh, soybeans are cooked, usually with grains like rice or millet, and then aged with a special culture that breaks the cooked beans down and binds the mixture into a firm substance that can be sliced.

When you look at tempeh, you can see the individual beans bound into a solid paste that makes up the slice or brick.

Tempeh contains more protein than tofu, and has a stronger taste.  Some are flavored to be smoked or like bacon.  

My Experience With Tempeh

My kids are still warming up to tempeh, because it tastes stronger and has a bit of the texture of eating beans.  They enjoy it when cut it up into very small pieces (smaller than their usual tofu cubes).  They liked the bacon flavoured one we recently put on pizza.  

I have trouble finding plain tempeh where I live, I am in the process of looking for more sources of it because we would like to eat more tempeh and less tofu, since tempeh is less processed.  I plan to experiment with a number of marinades on it, as I have read marinated tempeh is fabulous.

If you are lucky, you can find plain tempeh in health food stores and in many supermarkets near you, either refrigerated or frozen.

Where Can I Buy Tofu?

You can buy tofu at your local supermarket or grocery store or health food store in a refrigerated section.  It comes in packaged bricks or blocks.

In Asian Markets tofu is often sold in bulk with blocks floating in tubs of water.

What is a Substitute for Tofu?

A tofu substitute you can use is edamame  – which are green soybeans.  They are soft, yummy beans that are very satisfyingly chewy and rich – kind of like an avocado and a peanut, but much less oily.  I find they fill me up quite quickly probably due to their protein, fiber and the fat content (the essential kind of unprocessed fat we need to eat a little of each day).

Edamame are not processed like tofu, they are whole foods.  Edamame are a specialty soybean grown specifically to be picked and used in their immature stage. Edamame has small, fuzzy, dark green pods and a mild flavor. These soybeans have a higher protein and fat content than other beans.  Their protein is complete, meaning that it provides the essential amino acids needed in one’s diet. Soybeans are equivalent to animal products in terms of protein quality.

If you are lucky, you can find two types of edamame in your frozen vegetable section: shelled or still in their pods. The package directions will indicate if they are already cooked and ready to be thawed and eaten or if you need to steam or microwave them first.

The edamame in pods are great as a snack — you have to work to pop each slippery soybean out.  My daughter loves to sit and shell them for herself.  

The pre-shelled edamame are faster and can be used instead of tofu in your cooking.  

Edamame Nutrition

A half-cup serving of shelled edamame (or 1 1/8 cup edamame in the pods) contains:

  • 120 calories
  • 9 grams fiber
  • 2.5 grams fat
  • 1.5 grams polyunsaturated fat (0.3 grams plant omega-3 fatty acids)
  • 0.5 gram monounsaturated fat
  • 11 grams protein
  • 13 grams carbohydrate
  • 15 mg sodium
  • 10% of the Daily Value for vitamin C
  • 10% Daily Value for iron (quite high for a plant food – about as much as a 4-ounce roasted chicken breast.)
  • 8% Daily Value for vitamin A
  • 4% Daily Value for calcium

All health content on veganenvy.com is provided for general information only, and should not be treated as a substitute for the medical advice of your own doctor or any other health care professional. If you have any concerns about your general health, you should contact  your local health care provider.

 

Healthy Vegan is Trending!

Please, help others, and our planet – share this content on social media!

SaveSave

Pin It on Pinterest