Vegan at Meijer

Meijer is a grocery store that started in Greenville, Michigan in 1934, and now they have stores all across the Midwest. My family has shopped at Meijer for as long as I can remember – it’s so convenient, there are six locations within about 10 miles of us, and they’re open 24 hours a day every day except Christmas Eve (they close around 6) and Christmas Day (happily closed all day). But now Meijer is even more convenient for vegans! Of course they already had a huge vegan section from the beginning – the produce section 🙂 But lately it seems like they have more vegan options all the time. Here’s how I shop Vegan at Meijer

Vegan at Meijer

Vegan at Meijer: Field Roast | Orthodox and Vegan
It all started when I noticed the Field Roast items. I took a picture to share on my facebook page, and then I noticed…

Vegan at Meijer: Tofurky | Orthodox and Vegan
Hey, that’s Tofurky stuff right next to Field Roast! Never noticed that at Meijer before. What else is here?
(P.S. The Veggie Shreds in the purple bag are vegan! Green is NOT, so beware. Oh, and those Smart Patties are vegan, and there’s Smart Bacon, and Smart Deli, and…)

Vegan at Meijer: Margarine | Orthodox and Vegan
They’ve carried Earth Balance for years and years, but Melt is a relatively new addition. And there’s a variety of Smart Balance, check the packaging.

Vegan at Meijer: Non-dairy Milk | Orthodox and Vegan
They’ve also had Silk for many years, but now they have a wide variety of non-dairy milks including flax milk!

Vegan at Meijer: Cold Brew | Orthodox and Vegan
Cold brew coffee with almond milk, thanks to Califia.

Vegan at Meijer: Non-dairy Yogurt | Orthodox and Vegan
SO Delicious vegan yogurt. UPDATE: They also carry Silk now!

Vegan for Five Days - Califia Farms Vegan Coffee Creamer
Vegan creamer in delicious flavors, again by Califia Farms.

Vegan at Meijer: Non-dairy Ice Cream | Orthodox and Vegan
SO Delicious ice cream, ice cream bars, and ice cream sandwiches! There’s also sorbet, and multiple non-dairy popsicle options. UPDATE: They now carry the non-dairy Ben & Jerry’s!

Vegan at Meijer: Qrunch Foods | Orthodox and Vegan
Qrunch Burgers & Toastables in multiple flavors, and at one of the lowest prices in town. I forgot to look, but I think some of these Van’s waffles are also vegan!

Vegan at Meijer: Meat Alternatives | Orthodox and Vegan
Gardein stuff, and many vegan options from Boca. I’ve also seen Amy’s brand vegan burgers, vegan mac n cheese, and a cheeseless vegan pizza. UPDATE: Some Meijer locations are carrying Daiya pizzas now!

Vegan at Meijer: Meat Alternatives | Orthodox and Vegan
Morningstar Farms has become more vegan-friendly over the years. I used to avoid them because it seemed like all their products contained eggs, but not anymore.

Vegan at Meijer: Mayo | Orthodox and Vegan
Just Mayo, from one of my favorite vegan companies, Hampton Creek! And vegan mayo from Spectrum.

Vegan at Meijer: Sugar | Orthodox and Vegan
They even have certified vegan sugar!

Vegan at Meijer: McDougall's Soup | Orthodox and Vegan
Looking for a vegan cup o’ soup? Look no further!

Vegan at Meijer: Ranch Dressing | Orthodox and Vegan
VEGAN RANCH DRESSING!!! From Hilary’s.

Vegan at Meijer: Peanut Butter Cups | Orthodox and Vegan
Fair trade vegan peanut butter cups. I found them on clearance once and bought a dozen packages! They also have Justin’s Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups, includes bags of the mini cups.

Vegan at Meijer: Greek Food | Orthodox and Vegan
Greek Vegan in a Can. Maybe not just how yia-yia made it, but good enough. Make sure you grab some pita bread for dipping!

Vegan at Meijer: Kathleen's Kitchen | Orthodox and Vegan
Pot o’ beans.

Vegan at Meijer: Instant Mashed Potatoes | Orthodox and Vegan
Why do people need mashed potatoes in a box? I don’t know, but I’m glad we have that option!

Vegan at Meijer: Frosting | Orthodox and Vegan
AND THIS FROSTING. It’s so good. I brought the Peanut Butter Cookie Dough flavor to a Lenten picnic recently and it was a huge hit. Several times I was asked, “This is vegan?!” YES. Proud to say it’s vegan, and tastes like heaven.
UPDATEI just brought the PB Cookie Dough and the Hot Cocoa flavor to a meeting, and everyone LURVED them both suh much! I’ve confirmed Dollop is available at all Meijer locations.

There are actually a bunch of non-dairy frosting options available, they just aren’t certified vegan. Duncan Hines, for example has tons of frosting and cake mixes without dairy or eggs. If you’re concerned about the source of sugar, you’ll have to contact the company, though.

Vegan at Meijer: Neat Egg | Orthodox and Vegan
The Neat Egg – in fact, I’m sure they also have Neat Meat and somehow I didn’t get a picture. Thought it was pretty cool finding this in the baking aisle.

Vegan at Meijer: Gelatin Substitute | Orthodox and Vegan
BaKol Jel Dessert, complete with retro packaging. A delicious low-calorie treat without boiled animal parts :p

Vegan at Meijer: Dandies Marshmallows | Vegan and Orthodox
And speaking of delicious, boiled-animal-parts-free stuff, how ’bout vegan marshmallows hanging out right there with all the other marshmallows? These don’t seem to be available at every location, but I know for sure they have them here in Grand Rapids at the 28th Street store.

Vegan at Meijer: Chocolate | Orthodox and Vegan
And there’s vegan chocolate, so you can make vegan S’mores!

Vegan at Meijer: Powdered Coconut Milk | Vegan and Orthodox
And whatever you might do with powdered milk, now you can do it with vegan powdered coconut milk.

Now, is this all the vegan stuff at Meijer? I doubt it, this is just what I found quickly scanning the aisles while trying to sneakily snap a picture without anyone seeing me because I felt weird. If there is some wonderful vegan item you’d like to see at Meijer, I encourage you to request it since they’re obviously open to expanding.

What other great items have you found to help you go vegan at Meijer?

Unboxing: VioLife Cheese

I’ve been saving this bit of happy news for so long, I thought I was going to explode! But now that Cheesefare Week is upon us (and therefore, PIZZA WEEK!!!! Starting tomorrow, March 7), I can finally share. A few weeks ago I posted some tracking information on my facebook page and asked people to guess what was being delivered. You can bet I was checking the tracking multiple times a day, I was so excited…because…I was getting samples of VioLife vegan cheese, all the way from Greece! I made another silly little unboxing video so you can experience my joy.


This time I just completely drowned out my voice with the music, I really don’t add anything :p

VioLife Vegan Cheese
Originally I was going to save all this glorious cheese for Cheesefare week, but then I realized…this is a LOT of cheese! I don’t think I can eat it all by myself in one week. So I’ve already sampled some and have a few things to share. But I’ll also be trying it out on pizza all week long.

I hope you are all prepared for Pizza Week, and I hope some of you will join me in enjoying at least one piece of pizza every day until (Orthodox) Lent begins. I’m going to get my dough rising for pizza crust right now. See you tomorrow, for the first day of Pizza Week!

Unboxing: VioLife Cheese

I’ve been saving this bit of happy news for so long, I thought I was going to explode! But now that Cheesefare Week is upon us (and therefore, PIZZA WEEK!!!! Starting tomorrow, March 7), I can finally share. A few weeks ago I posted some tracking information on my facebook page and asked people to guess what was being delivered. You can bet I was checking the tracking multiple times a day, I was so excited…because…I was getting samples of VioLife vegan cheese, all the way from Greece! I made another silly little unboxing video so you can experience my joy.


This time I just completely drowned out my voice with the music, I really don’t add anything :p

VioLife Vegan Cheese
Originally I was going to save all this glorious cheese for Cheesefare week, but then I realized…this is a LOT of cheese! I don’t think I can eat it all by myself in one week. So I’ve already sampled some and have a few things to share. But I’ll also be trying it out on pizza all week long.

I hope you are all prepared for Pizza Week, and I hope some of you will join me in enjoying at least one piece of pizza every day until (Orthodox) Lent begins. I’m going to get my dough rising for pizza crust right now. See you tomorrow, for the first day of Pizza Week!

Fatally Yours Valentine’s Day Chocolates by Vegan Treats

Fatally Yours Chocolates by Vegan Treats
You guys….YOU GUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUYS, this year I finally broke down and bought myself a box of Fatally Yours Valentine’s Day chocolates from Vegan Treats. I’ve been wanting these for years and years. Every year I tell myself they’re too expensive. Then after a while I think, “Hey, you only live once!” But by then they’re sold out 🙁 But not this year. This year I didn’t even wait to see them advertised on facebook. I looked them up sometime in January and ordered them immediately without thinking twice.


I’ve been kind of obsessed with idea of doing unboxing videos for the blog, so here’s my first! I’ve already made a few others.
I did make a mistake in the video – the caramel oozed out of the big skull and onto the little heart, it’s not coming from the little heart. I’m sure you really care.

Fatally Yours Chocolates by Vegan Treats
It is so lovely a thing, I don’t even regret the hefty price tag. The chocolates are handmade, gorgeous, and delicious! And vegan!!!! And made in limited quantities, so what can you expect? Well, you can expect high quality and fine details, and everything a girl could ever want in a super morbid box of Valentine’s Day chocolates.
The box itself is something I want to keep forever and forever, plus there’s a Vegan Treats postcard, a decal, and two buttons.

Fatally Yours Chocolates by Vegan Treats
I’ve always been partial to skulls, maybe that’s why I like being an Orthodox girl so much 🙂 I don’t know what is wrong with me, but one year when a friend was really hating Valentine’s Day, I made him a card to commemorate the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre instead. It was an awful card, but it was also pretty cool…and Valentine’s Day has never been the same for me. And then I found this!!! Included are:

Fatally Yours Chocolates by Vegan Treats
Two White Chocolate Mummies in a Chocolate Peanut Butter Sarcophagus, Two White Chocolate Humerus Bones

Fatally Yours Chocolate Skulls by Vegan Treats
One Hazelnut Praline Crunch in an Abysmally Dark Chocolate Skull (the little guy), One Caramel Cookie Stix Skull (the big guy) – that’s basically a vegan Twix bar in the shape of a skull!!!! And one Black Coffee Blues Caramel Cup Rose Heart

Fatally Yours Chocolate Hearts by Vegan Treats
Two Anatomically Correct Hearts filled with Marshmallow Chunk Speculoos Filling

Fatally Yours Chocolates by Vegan Treats
Two Magic in the Stars Constellation Chocolate Mousse Soufflés, Two Passionless Fruit and Madagascar Vanilla Bean filled Swiss Chocolates with White Chocolate X

Fatally Yours Chocolates by Vegan Treats
Two Paint Spatter Fluted Chocolates with “Black as Your Heart” Raspberry Filling, and One Moon & Stars Blood Red Velvet

Fatally Yours Chocolate Skeletal Hands by Vegan Treats
Two White Chocolate Skeletal Hands

Fatally Yours Chocolate Planchette by Vegan Treats
One Giant Chocolate Planchette – it’s not mentioned in the booklet, but when I unwrapped it I could smell peanut butter, and it does appear to be filled. Oh, what booklet, you ask?

Fatally Yours Chocolates by Vegan Treats
This very pretty little booklet describing each of the chocolates. But the best way to find out how what the chocolates taste like…

Fatally Yours Chocolates by Vegan Treats
Is to take a bite!

I ate a few pieces this morning for breakfast, everything has been wonderful so far. I’m saving the Twix skull for last, I just know it will be amazing.

Have you tried the Fatally Yours collection? What’s your favorite Valentine’s Day treat?

Vegan at Trader Joe’s

Vegan at Trader Joe's
So the other day I stopped by the new Trader Joe’s here in town – just for one item, as you can clearly see. I was actually in need of cream cheese & sour cream, but all I found was vegan cream cheese. And then I found…
-Mozzarella-style Shreds
-Chickenless Crispy Tenders
-Chicken-less Mandarin Orange Morsels
-Meatless Meatballs
-Soy Chorizo
-Tikka Masala
-Strawberry Frozen Dessert

Trader Joe's Vegan Chickenless Tenders
First I went for the chickenless tenders. I was in a hurry to get ready for a night out, so I simply put them in a pita pocket with sauteed veggies and covered them with mustard. I love mustard. I’m pretty sure these are a store brand version of Gardein. They have the same texture and taste, but for a $1 or so less 🙂 They get nice and crispy on the outside, but stayed tender and juicy on the inside. In sandwiches, there’s enough here to feed two.

Trader Joe's Chicken-less Mandarin Orange Morsels
Later I cooked up the mandarin orange morsels with nothing but sauteed onions & garlic. This is a pretty big portion for one, but if you added rice and more veggies you could easily feed four. The sauce is good, not too sweet. Definitely something I’d have again.

Trader Joe's Vegan Soy Chorizo
I sauteed the soy chorizo with onions, garlic, and mushrooms, then added my Pasta Zero and let the flavors cook in. Towards the end I added a handful of the mozzarella-style shreds. The chorizo is pretty spicy, but has a good flavor. I’m not a huge fan of the shreds – they’re just like (and maybe are) Go Veggie shreds in that they melt down into a sticky puddle that kind of sticks to your teeth. This is not good on pizza or nachos unless you make sure to completely cover the cheesy puddle with toppings. It does work well for things like bean dip, though.

Trader Joe's Vegan Meatless Meatballs
We had a bottle of Hawaiian BBQ sauce in the fridge that no one liked. I spiced it up and added minced onion & garlic, then simmered the meatballs for about 10-15 minutes. They were perfect. I could’ve eaten them just like that, but I made a little sandwich since I’m so fond of carbs. You could also do a traditional meatball sub with marinara sauce, and even use those shreds if you melt them down in the sauce.

Trader Joe's Vegan Cream Cheese
Lastly, I made these little pickle appetizers as a midnight snack one night when there was nothing else in the house. The cream cheese is definitely not my favorite. It has a weird taste, I’m not sure if it’s soy or coconut coming through, but it’s unpleasant. Luckily I had these dill pickles with a strong garlic taste, and they helped cover the strange aftertaste of the cream cheese. With the saltiness of the crackers, it was good enough. I would not like it plain on a bagel. I added salt, pepper, garlic, onion powder, and dried dill to it and although it was better, it still had an aftertaste. I don’t think I’ll buy it again.

The tikka masala frozen dinner was very good, but I didn’t get a good picture of it. I also didn’t take a picture of myself eating the strawberry ice cream straight out of the carton 🙂

I know I still have a lot stuff to try. What are your favorite vegan items from Trader Joe’s?

No Bake Peanut Butter & Jelly Pie

Vegan No Bake Peanut Butter & Jelly Pie
I have to make this pie again and take a better picture, I was too busy eating this one to put much time into photographing 🙂 A local shop was selling vegan Peanut Butter Pie for Thanksgiving, but I was too cheap to buy one. I planned to make my own, then when I got to Harvest Health Foods they were out of every brand of plain vegan cream cheese. Daiya to the rescue – I grabbed their strawberry flavor and decided to make a PB&J pie instead! I also used Earth Balance peanut butter for the first time (next time I’m going to experiment with their extra protein version).

At first I didn’t think it turned out because as I mixed it, the oil appeared to separate. I’m not sure if it was oil from the peanut butter, the cream cheese, or both. But since I didn’t have a Plan B, I dumped my odd filling into my pre-made pie crust, stuck it in the fridge, and hoped for the best. I pulled it out the next day, and sure enough, it just kinda looked like a pie. Haha. Vegan peanut butter cup garnishes are optional, but wonderful if you have them.

My somewhat picky, non-vegan-but-Nativity-fasting brother-in-law was afraid to try it, but took a piece since it was one of the few Lenten desserts we had for Thanksgiving. I think he said something like, “It’s actually not bad!” 🙂 Serve with a glass of almond milk, or a cup of coffee.

No Bake Peanut Butter & Jelly Pie
graham cracker pie crust
1 C creamy peanut butter, such as Earth Balance
1 8oz container Daiya strawberry cream cheese
1 1/4 C confectioners sugar
strawberry jelly for swirling
optional: vegan peanut butter cups (I used Justin’s dark chocolate)

In a bowl, cream together peanut butter and cream cheese until it’s well blended and relatively smooth. Slowly mix in confectioners sugar. Pour filling into pie crust and smooth it out. Now to make it pretty and extra strawberry-y, spoon a few tablespoons of strawberry jelly over the filling here and there and just sort of lightly swirl it in with the spoon. It should still be smooth on top. Cover the pie and let it chill in the fridge for at least an hour or two. Garnish with peanut butter cups just before serving.

Next time I think I’ll try mine with a chocolate cookie crust. What’s your favorite pie filling?

10 Minute 2 Ingredient Semi Homemade Pudding

I don’t know how I didn’t figure this out before, but I could’ve been eating gloriously cheap and delicious vegan pudding all these years! And it couldn’t be simpler. I wouldn’t call this a “from scratch” recipe, more like semi-homemade, but I’m okay with that.

This morning I rolled out of bed and realized I’d forgotten to make something for breakfast (I usually eat at work) and I didn’t have much time to spare. By the time I finished getting myself ready, it was 7:52 and I needed to leave the house at 8:10.

10 Minute 2 Ingredient Homemade Vegan Pudding
I grabbed these two ingredients: Pumpkin Spice coconut milk & cornstarch. That’s it. You can really use any flavor you want, or use plain and flavor it yourself. I used a couple ad-ins, but they’re optional.

10 Minute 2 Ingredient Homemade Vegan Pudding
The pudding is wonderful warm, and when it cools it gets pretty solid and gelatinous. Might even work for a pie filling.

10 Minute Pudding
1 C flavored coconut milk
1 Tbsp cornstarch

Add cornstarch to pan over medium high and use a whisk to spread it around. Immediately, but SLOWLY, begin pouring in the coconut milk while whisking to prevent lumps from forming. Keep whisking as you bring the milk to a boil. Let is boil for just a minute or so, then remove from heat.
Serve warm and soupy, or cold and thick.

If you want to increase the recipe, it’s just 1 Tbsp cornstarch for every cup of milk. You don’t have to use coconut milk, but I like the fat 🙂 I also added a bit of coconut milk yogurt to mine while it was cooling, and today I added a bit of maple syrup.

I started cooking around 7:54, and by the time I took this picture at 8:09 I had already cleaned my mess and had the pudding chilling in the fridge. Doesn’t seem to hurt a thing if you increase the heat and bring it to a boil faster on the high setting, just make sure you whisk the entire time.

It’s vegan, gluten free, oil free, cheap, fast, and perfect for a strict fasting day!

Food Fight! Grocery in Portland

Sooooo, I haven’t made anything very interesting lately. I’m working on a new jackfruit recipe, but until then, thought I’d take you on a tour of Food Fight! Grocery. This is my favorite place to shop when I’m in Portland. The first time I went it reminded me of a little gas station convenience store, complete with pay-by-weight nachos and a vegan nacho cheese pump! I wish they would bring that back. But anyway, there are a million other things to try. I shared a little something with you last year, but this time I tried to take pictures of everything.

Food Fight Vegan Grocery Portland, OR
Being in a place like this makes you feel like a normal person. Ya know, instead of feeling so…vegan 🙂

Food Fight Vegan Grocery Portland, OR
Tons of fancy cheeses. The Chao is a bit expensive compared to Whole Foods, but still cheaper than Harvest Health Foods here in Grand Rapids.

Food Fight Vegan Grocery Portland, OR
A bunch of veggie meats ranging from major brands you can find almost anywhere, to random stuff I normally only see at the Asian market.

Food Fight Vegan Grocery Portland, OR
Frozen pizza, hot pockets, TV dinners.

Food Fight Vegan Grocery Portland, OR
MOAR vegan meats!

Food Fight Vegan Grocery Portland, OR
I did not know these existed. Next time I promise I’ll try them!

Food Fight Vegan Grocery Portland, OR
Corn dogs! Mac n Cheese Strudel!!!

Food Fight Vegan Grocery Portland, OR
I always see Alpendough on What Fat Vegans Eat, I wanted to try every flavor. I didn’t have time 🙁

Food Fight Vegan Grocery Portland, OR
So. Many. Cheez sauces.

Food Fight Vegan Grocery Portland, OR
At least 7 kinds of vegan jerky here.

Food Fight Vegan Grocery Portland, OR
Cookies. Cotton Candy. Marshmallow treats.

Food Fight Vegan Grocery Portland, OR
Four kinds of boxed mac n cheese. I’ve tried all but one now!

Food Fight Vegan Grocery Portland, OR
I’m dying. I only really had 2 full days to eat, and no checked bag to bring liquid-type stuff home, or this aged nut cheese sauce would’ve been mine!

Food Fight Vegan Grocery Portland, OR
I haven’t yet found veggie haggis in Grand Rapids.

Food Fight Vegan Grocery Portland, OR
So this was my tiny haul – and the croissant (filled with pizza toppings) and Charlie Brown bar in the foreground actually came from Sweetpea Baking Co.

From Food Fight I grabbed Tofurky pockets, mac n cheese strudel, pizza-flavored mac n cheese from So Delicious, a couple bags of $1 snack thingies, two kinds of fancy cheese, Sweet & Sara graham crackers, a caramel, and a wonderful all-natural vegan deodorant by Schmidt’s (btw, it’s the best deodorant I’ve ever used).

Food Fight Vegan Grocery Portland, OR
I couldn’t stop eating these things. I put them in tacos and filled them with cheese…think I have pictures of that somewhere.

Food Fight Vegan Grocery Portland, OR
Speaking of cheese. It was a really sad day when I had to go home and leave a bunch of this in my BFF’s fridge because it was opened and wouldn’t have made it past TSA. I ate as much as I possibly could. Next time I’ll try harder.

Have you ever shopped at someplace like Food Fight Grocery? Would you pay $25 to check a bag just so you can bring special treats home?

International Vegan Junk Food Day: What Junk Food Vegans Eat

Wouldn’t you know International Vegan Junk Food Day would be August 29th, the day of the Feast of the Beheading of St. John the Baptist, which happens to be a strict fasting day. But I have also been wanting to do a “What do vegans eat” kind of post, so while I probably won’t eat anything fried or drenched in olive oil today (or round, or on a platter, or cut with a knife) I will gladly share a junk food edition of What Vegans Eat.

So yeah. Whenever someone asks, “You’re a vegan? So…what can you eat???” I freeze up and have no idea what to say because a million things come to mind at once. First there’s the entire produce section at the grocery store, and all the countless things you can create with the numberless combinations of fruits and vegetables. Then you have grains, nuts, seeds, and SUGARY THINGS. There are nut milks, and seed milks, and grain milks. There are vegan meats and cheeses. Entire frozen meals and roasts.

It’s SO easy to be vegan these days, not like 17 years ago when I was lucky to find margarine and soy milk at the health food store. Now we can get doughnuts! But if you’re still at a loss trying to imagine these things, allow me to show you, in no particular order…

Vegan Cookies and Spiked Coffee, What Vegans Eat
Homemade cookies and spiked coffee. There are a TON of vegan egg substitutes for baking (just-add-water powders, mashed banana, chia seeds, flax seeds, baking soda + vinegar, to name a few), and several vegan margarines to replace butter – or experiment with nut and seed butters or oil.
You can also find cookies from Alternative Baking Company, GoodBites, Uncle Eddie’s, and many more online or at health food stores.

And the booze? Most booze is vegan!

Red Rabbit Bakery Doughnuts, What Vegans Eat
Here in Grand Rapids, MI we are lucky to find vegan doughnuts from Propaganda Doughnuts and Rise! Grand Rapids, and occasionally Bartertown Diner. In Texas, there’s Red Rabbit Cooperative in Austin, and Reverie Bakeshop in Richardson. Sweetpea Baking Company or Voodoo Doughnut in Portland, OR. Dun-Well Donuts in Brooklyn. Sweet Freedom Bakery in Philadelphia. Glazed and Infused in Orlando. BeetBox Bakery and Cafe in Denver. You get the idea.

Trader Joe's Speculoos and Peanut Butter Pretzels, What Vegans Eat
If you have a Trader Joe’s nearby, you’ll have all kinds of fun options, but if you can’t get your hands on the specific brands they sell, you can usually find something similar at your regular grocery store (in this case, Biscoff Spread and H.K. Anderson peanut butter filled pretzels are sold all over the place).

Vegan Burrito Moe's
You can get vegan tacos and burritos from Moe’s, Chipotle, Qdoba, and even Taco Bell! In fact most Mexican restaurants have TONS of vegan options.

Vegan Boxed Macaroni and Cheese
Think you’ll miss the days of quick, convenient boxed mac n cheese? NOPE. Earth Balance even uses similar packets of bright orange cheese-flavored powder!

Non-Dairy Vegan Cheese
And speaking of, we do okay without dairy-based cheese, too. Daiya, Chao, Go Veggie, Follow Your Heart, and Tofutti are some of the big brands out there, not to mention all the recipes you can find for making your own spreads & blocks at home. The vegan cheese scene is improving every day!

Meaty Vegan Sandwich
Arby’s has nothing on meaty vegan sandwiches – we have Qrunch Burgers, Boca Burgers, Amy’s Burgers, tons of smaller brands that can be found at health food stores, and all kinds of deli slices from Field Roast, Tofurky, Yves, and Light Life just to name a few. There are hot dogs, sausages, roasts, chic’n patties, sliders, battered “fish” (checkout Sophie’s Kitchen brand) and whatever else you can think of, we can and probably already have VEGANIZED IT.

Wait. I know what’s coming next. Let me cover this right now:

Cruelty Free Vegan Bacon
Yes, we thought about this, too. There are plenty of vegan bacon options out there, and lots you can make at home.

Dollop Vegan Frosting
Yes, you can even still eat canned frosting by the spoonful 😀 Nom Nom Nom I found Dollop at Meijer (also available at Wegmans, on Amazon, and at Nooch Vegan Market in Denver), along with a few really junky (but yummy and milk-free) brands. In fact, you can find All Kinds of Vegan Things at Meijer, and probably most grocery chains near you.

Make an Amazing Peanut Butter Cake with Caramel Sauce
You can still enjoy a fabulous birthday cake, too! Making your own is easy (from scratch or from a box), but many bakeries do vegan cakes these days, too.

Check out:
Chocolate Cake Recipe from the Minimalist Baker
Vanilla Cake Recipe from The Cake Merchant
Peanut Butter Cake Recipe from Oh She Cooks!
Carrot Cake Recipe from Love & Lemons

Aquafaba Vegan Marshmallow Fluff
And now we have discovered….AQUAFABA, the liquid from cooked beans. It can be whipped up to make vegan meringues and marshmallow fluff. It’s the most vegan thing ever, and it is delicious and amazing.
Look at the Macrons from Crazy Vegan Kitchen made with aquafaba!

Vegan Onion Rings from Stella's in Grand Rapids, MI
Here in Grand Rapids, MI, we have a wonderful bar that serves vegan burgers, potato wings (fried potato wedges coated in wing sauce), a vegan meatloaf dinner, and huge, indulgent beer-battered onion rings, among other things. In fact, you can read about every vegan-friendly (or not so friendly) restaurant I’ve been to in GR by visiting my Vegan in Grand Rapids page.

Koyo Vegan Ramen
Are you kind of person that likes to live off ramen? That’s okay. Top Ramen and Nissan both offer vegan flavors, or for three times as much ($1/ea in these parts) you can upgrade to Koyo brand ramen, made with organic ingredients and heirloom wheat.

Do you see what I’m saying here? YOU CAN DO IT! You can eat good things, and bad things that taste good, and never feel deprived, and be sweet to the animals, and lower your cholesterol. Today is about junk food, but there are a bazillion clean vegan options to balance this stuff out (or not). The point is, it’s easy. So what’s your excuse? GO VEGAN!

Find recipes and inspiration for International Vegan Junk Food Day on my Junk Food Fix page!

Week of Greek: Shopping

201367 boat ride5
Now that we’ve had fun cooking together all week, maybe you’d like to know where you can purchase some of the ingredients used in the recipes. Pretty much every ingredient can easily be found in grocery stores in most parts of the US (and of course Greece!). Not sure about other countries, but the ingredients are very basic. That said, it sure would be nice for Greece if we bought Greek imports when available. Now some regular grocery stores, like Meijer and H-E-B, will carry at least a few imports. But in some areas, you may need to seek out a Mediterranean or European market.

Krinos and Optima Foods are two of the biggest importers in the US.
Another brand that comes to mind is Arosis, I bought some of their dried gigantes in Greece and now see they’re available in the US. You can even find them on Amazon.
And of course you can always look for products with Greek writing on them 🙂 When you see a product labeled, “Greek xyz,” check to see if it’s made in Greece.
I’ve never seen a Mountain Tea (sometimes called Mountain Herb or Wild Tea) that isn’t imported from Greece. It’s actually a very beautiful herb, usually sold still on the stem and with little blossoms, although in Greece I found it in tea bags.

Here you will find A List of the 25 Best Greek Olive Oils of 2015, as awarded by the New York International Olive Oil Competition (yes, that’s a real thing!). There’s even a key that shows if the oil won a gold or silver medal. Click on the picture of any oil you’re interested in to read a more detailed description and find out where it can be purchased.

Here is A List of Some Vegan-Friendly Greek Wines from Barnivore.com

I also found a wonderful list of brick and mortar Greek markets in the US and Canada over at The Greek Vegan, many of them also have websites, some that you can order products from.

Keep watching Oh She Cooks on facebook because I’ll be sharing the last Week of Greek recipe from 2 Broke Vegans sometime today! And tomorrow I’ll post the whole lineup of recipes in case you want to cook up a Greek feast for family and friends!