31 vegan dinner ideas for veganuary

January the 1st 2020. And many of you are *hopefully* comitting to veganuary… or maybe you have just decided to eat more plantbased and are looking for some meal inspiration…. well then, here are 31 lunch or dinner ideas you can try making or incoporating into your weekly diet!

When you first start eating plantbased you may find it hard to know what to eat and you end up just eating salad, or you take away the meat and dairy but don’t replace it with anything so you end up unsatisfied, hungry and get cravings.

So my best tip is to 1) Remember to substitute what you take away. I.e switch dairy products for non dairy alternatives. And if you take away the meat or fish on your plate, don’t just take it away or substitute with more potatoes. Instead substitute it with tofu, tempeh, beans, soya products or something else that gives you protein.

Another tip is to write down all your favourite meals and find a way to veganize them. Now a days the majority of dishes can be veganized in one way or another. Though of course, you do have to be prepared for the fact that the dish won’t taste exactly the same. So some prefer to note veganize and isntead just recreate new vegan dishes which don’t try to replicate a non vegan dish.

I would suggest you write down a bunch of different meal ideas or recipes you want to try or try to recreate and have that as a back up for when you don’t know what to cook or eat. A good idea is also to have the list on your phone for the days you are tired and hungry and need to quickly shop for food.

Invest in some cookbooks or follow a bunch of vegan recipe creators online (such as myself 😉 Instagram: itsahealthylifestyle)

Also, here is a post with some good staple foods to always have at home &what’s in my fridge/freezer

And for more inspiration or cooking videos, you can follow me on my Youtube channel – IzzyM

Meal ideas

*click the picture for the name of the dish*

There you have many different dishes you can try out 🙂 I have plenty more recipes you can search for on my blog. Also a whole bunch of breakfast, snacks and desserts which you can check out.

So now it is just to get cooking and try different recipes, see what you like and what you don’t like!

If you try any of these recipes, let me know in the comments down below or on my Instagram (itsahealthylifestyle)

Kale and tofu pie | Updated | Chickpeaflour

Christmas is over for this year…. now it is just another 365 days to go until next Christmas. And i am relieved for that….

I have eaten christmas food non stop for the past week, so i am ready to let that go for a few months… until it is Easter and we eat pretty much the same foods again.

But one dish which i won’t be letting go so easily… or atleast won’t be waiting until Easter until i make this again is this kale and tofu pie.

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So i have made this pie several times before, but then i have made the pie filling from a mix of oatcream and maizena. It has worked, but i decided to try make a filling based on chickpea flour and i have to say that i really liked it.

It did make the cake alot more filling which is of course a good thing. Not to mention the chickpea flour adds some extra protein to this dish… not that it needs it as there is alreayd tofu or vegan chicken in it. But the chickpea flour gives this cake more texture and taste which i really liked.

Chickpea flour isn’t always so easily found which might make it hard to make this recipe. But you may be able to order online… and then you can try making chickpea pancakes or chickpea tofu with the remanining flour.

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This pie works to also make directly in glass lunch boxes, i.e you make 2-3 smaller pies ready to bring to work or school. However, then you may need to increase the pie dough with 50% just so that you can cover the whole base of the glass lunch boxes.

I have also madeportion lasagne in my glass lunch boxes, an easy way to mealprep or if you don’t have any large forms!

Give this pie a try and don’t forget to let me know what you think 🙂 Comment down below or let me know on Instagram (Itsahealthylifestyle)

You can also see when i make this pie in my latest YouTube video (HERE)

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Recipe

Serve 6-8 people

Prep: c.a 20 minutes Cook time: c.a 45 minutes. Cool down: 20 minutes

Pie base:

180g all purpose flour

150g margarine, room temperature

Pinch of salt and pepper

2-3 tbsp water if necessary

Kale filling:

300g frozen kale

1 medium/small red onion

2-3 cloves of garlic, crushed

150g tofu or vegan chicken pieces (eg. hälsans kök)

2 tablespoon vegetable fond (not broth)

2 tablespoon nutritional yeast (can be omitted)

Chickpea flour filling:

130g chickpea flour

1 teaspoon cornstarch

1/2 teaspoon kala namak

130ml oatcream

100ml water

2 tbsp nutritional yeast
Pinch of salt and pepper

Optional: Top the pie with some walnuts

How to:

Preheat oven to 200C

Begin making the pie dough. Add the flour, salt and pepper to a baking bowl. Chop the margarine into small cubes. Add into the flour and with your hands begin to press/crumble the margarine to mix into the flour.

When the margine is fully crumbled, meaning no large pieces of margarine. Add 1-2 tablespoon of cold water to help turn the crumble into more of a dough. Once the flour/margarine has turned into a dough, i.e not too crumbly and not too wet, place in the fridge for 30 minutes.

In the mean time, grease your pie form or glass jars with some oil or margarine.

After the 30 minutes, press the dough into the cake form and begin making the pie base. Press it evenly throughout the whole form and try to press up on the edges of the form as well- otherwise there is risk that the pie filling will just ooze out.

Poke holes in the pie base and then bake in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes.

In the mean time, make the kale filling.

Chop and dice the red onion and garlic. Add to a frying pan with a generous amount of oil. Fry until golden brown.

Then add the kale – frozen is best in this recipe. But you can use fresh, just make sure to rinse and chop first (also letting it sit in water with some salt for a while can make it easier to digest).

Add the tofu or vegan chickenpieces and allow fry until golden brown and the kale has begun to shrink. Add the vegetable fond along with the nutritional yeast, fry for a few more minutes or until the kale mix is soft. Then remove from the heat.

Chickpeafilling

Make the chickpea filling by weighing out the chickpea flour and adding to a baking bowl. Add the cornstarch, kala namak, nutritional yeast as well as salt and pepper. Mix.

Then add in the liquid and mix until combined. There should be no clumps and the batter will be similar to pancake batter. Set aside until the pie crust has prebaked.

Once the pie crust has prebaked, take out of the oven and add the kale filling. Then pour over the chickpea flour mix together with the kale filling.

Place bake into the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes or until the filling has firmed up.

Once done, take out of the oven and let sit for 15 minutes before serving.

Top with some walnuts for extra crunch!

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You can make this pie in many different ways and you can even change the filling… example go for spinach and vegan feta cheese. Or why not go for a tomato and thyme filling?

All you really need is the base pie crust and the chickpea – or cream – filling/”egg”replacement. And the rest of the fillings and seasoning is up to you 🙂

 

Salted caramel-tahini-roasted nut nice cream

Ever since I bought my food processor this summer all I have wanted to do is mix foods….. hummus, soup, nice cream…. It has definitely been a well used kitchen appliance.

And the panic that set in when my food processor began overheating and smoke was coming from the motor…. Full on panic that I would no longer be able to make nice cream. It was then I relized that adding smoking hot soup directly to the blender and blending a little too long was not a good idea i.e the motor overheated. But it is working fine now once it had cooled down.

You can see the blender I use HERE: (amazon affiliate link)

As you saw in my previous recipe, I made a salted date caramel, which was tasty just as it was. However once I made the caramel I also realized I didn’t know what to do with it… of course, I would gladly eat it just on it’s own with a spoon… but I thought I should try making something with it.

And it was then when I was looking in my pantry that inspiration struck….tahini and dates works amazing… add it to nice cream along with some roasted nuts. AMAZING, am I right?

And luckily for me, I had some banana slices in the freezer ready to be turned into nice cream when cravings hit.

So what is nicecream… well if you haven’t heard it before, it is basically just bananas, frozen and then mixed into “ice cream”.

Nice = because it is tasty but also nice = as in no animals were harmed to make this ice cream.

You can find some of my other nice cream flavours HERE. But it is just to go wild and crazy and use whatever extras, toppings and flavours you want. Just use bananas as the base and then add in some coconut milk or substitute half of the bananas for berries and then add some nuts, seeds, nut butter, cacao, cookies, brownies, chocolate chips etc

The best is to use a highspeed food processor when making the nice cream. And I recommend you take the bananas out of the freezer 10 minutes before making just to let them get a little softer so that your food processor doesn’t overwork or break from trying to mix the frozen bananas.

How to make the salted caramel tahini nice cream?

Ingredients:

For thesalted caramel, use THISrecipe. Then add 2-3 tbsp or more depending on your preference

Tahini, 2-3 tbsp

1-3 bananas (for one serving). Peel, chop and freezer for 3-4 hours or overnight. (Note, freeze in a container with a lid on, or in a plastic bag/freezer bag

Handful of nuts – salted or unsalted. Either buy preroasted or roast yourself

How to:

Begin by peeling, chopping and freezing the bananas. The best is to buy bananas when on sale and just peel, chop and freeze a whole bunch of them. I recommend you store 2-3 chopped bananas in separate freezer bags so that you have them proportioned instead of freezing them all in one container as then it can be hard to get only some of the banana out.

Freeze for 3-4 hours, but preferably overnight.

Make the date caramel if you haven’t already.

Roast the nuts – Place the nuts on a baking pan, spread them out evenly. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes at 180c. Note, you can add a little oil/vegan margarine and salt, but then just check on the nuts to make sure they don’t burn. You may need to rotate them after half the time.

Begin making the nice cream by adding the frozen bananas, some date syrup and tahini to the mixer. Mix on high speed until smooth. If necessary, add 1-2tbsp oat milk, though this shouldn’t really be necessary.

Once done, taste and add more date syrup or tahini according to preference. Add the roasted nuts, mix in and then eat and enjoy!!

Another amazing nice cream flavour to add to the books! Not everyone will like this flavour because of the sweet and saltiness… the salt from the salted caramel does stand out against the sweet dates and the sweet nice cream, but I liked that!!

Lastly I do need to note that even if this is nice cream and the caramel is made from dates, do consider this a sweet treat. Fruit sugar may not be exactly the same as white table sugar, but it still contains quite a lot of sugar and therefore it works great as a dessert. Of course if you just use 1-2 bananas and 1-2tsbp date syrup it is not a big deal, but I wouldn’t recommend going overboard with bananas or date syrup.

Salted date caramel

I don’t know about you…. But I love the sweet and salty combo.

Fries in milkshake? Yes please.

Ice cream and crisps? Yes please.

Caramel popcorn? I want it all.

Salted caramel rice cakes? I could eat the whole package at once.

I am a huge fan of salted caramel but I have never made or bought a vegan kind. I think I have eaten brownies with salted caramel sauce in a restaurant, but never tried making my own.

I am pretty sure it is easy to make your own… Brown, coconut milk or soya cream, vanilla and sea salt. Boil it together and make some caramel.

But as I had bought a bunch of dates and I knew date caramel was a thing I thought…. Why not try making salted date caramel?

And I can say….. it was so yummy. Of course, it was not as smooth as maybe a regular caramel sauce or a store bought one as dates has a lot of fiber and the skin is on the dates which contribute to a rougher texture. But it still tastes good.

The best is to use fresh dates, the kind that are super soft and “moist” (gotta love that word!). However, if you do use dry dates just put them in a bowl and soak in boiling hot water for 5-10 minutes, then they will become softer.

I also recommend using a highspeed food processor and not a handmixer, just because it will get the job done quicker and will make it smoother. But you can of course use a handmixer.

I used soya cream at home as that was what I had at home, but it should work fine with coconut cream (though the caramel will have a taste of coconut then) or you could use oat cooking cream.

Note, I used a sweetened soya cream which wasn’t necessary as dates are already so sweet. So I would recommend using an unsweetened cream if possible.

How to store this caramel?

I stored it in an airtight glass jar in the fridge, and it lasted about 5 days. So that is what I can guarantee, but it should store longer.

You can adapt the quantities based on how much caramel you want. You can use more liquid to thin it out, add more sweetener or salt depending on your preferences. So this is just a base recipe, but you can adapt it as much as you like. And if you do want a really thin and smooth caramel sauce I do recommend you go for a coconutmilk/brown sugar caramel sauce and not use dates.

Also, you can use less liquid and instead make more of a date caramel paste which you can use to dip apples in or even use as filling for cakes!

 

Recipe:

I used about 15-20 dates. (Use the fresh kind, if not soak in boiling hot water)

Around 200-300ml soya cream/oatcream/coconut milk or cream

1-2tsp sea salt

Optional, 1tsp vanilla or brown sugar for muskiness (though the dates or so sweet this shouldn’t really be necessary)

How to:

If your dates aren’t fresh, soak them. If they are fresh then add them to a pot along with c.a 200ml liquid (add more as necessary when mixing). Heat on medium for 5-6 minutes and allow to simmer. Add 1 tsp of sea salt.

Pour of the contents into a high speed food processor and mix until smooth, or if using a handmixer, mix directly in the pot until smooth. Keep adding liquid until you have reached the right texture. (add a little at a time). Give the caramel a taste and add more salt according to preference. It is better to start off with a little and add more, rather than add too much and not know how to fix the saltiness.

Once smooth, pour over into a clean glass jar and store in the fridge!

This caramel works great to eat just as it is, or use in cake fillings or why not eat with some apples or crisp bread!

It should of course be noted that even if this is date caramel sauce, it is high in sugar and should still be considered a sweet treat!!!

Have you tried making your own date caramel sauce before…? If not, it is about time you try!!

Don’t forget to let me know in the comments down below if you made this or tag me on Instagram, itsahealthylifestyle.

Vegan “brie”

This recipe has been in my drafts about 2 years…. I guess that shows how great of a blogger I am, hahah.

I was inspired to make this recipe a long time ago when I saw someone post about it in a facebook group. Only 3 ingredients to make vegan “brie”.

Before I went vegan I had a sort of love/hate relationship with brie…. Or well, I couldn’t quite decide if I liked it or not. Sometimes I liked it, sometimes I didn’t. I must admit I am not a huge fan of melted cheese, neither dairy nor vegan cheese. Something about that gooey texture just isn’t for me…

I am really selling this recipe, right?

I decided it was finally time to give this recipe a go and see whether it worked or not.

Vegan cheese (preferably plain, I used Violife cheese), cream cheese (I used oatlys) and some oat cooking cream (I also used Oatly). That is all you need.

The results….? Creamy and cheesey…. A little gooey as well.

If you let the cheese sit for 24 hours in the fridge it does create a sort of thicker outer layer resembling the outer layer of brie cheese, but not quite the same texture. Of course, I haven’t eaten brie cheese in almost 4 years so I am sure if you eat brie first and then eat this remake of it, it won’t be the same. But it does have similar qualities and textures according to me.

I definitely think I can experiment more with this recipe, maybe try another cheese brand to see how it works or add flavours to the cheese such as garlic or chilli or why not some roasted walnuts. (Even though I know brie is just plain in flavour).

Give this recipe a try. I would suggest you half the recipe if you just want to try it or are just making for one person.

Recipe:

200g vegan cheese, plain

100ml oatcream

80g cream cheese

How to:

Chop the cheese into smaller pieces.

Pour the oatcream into a pot and heat on medium. Add the vegan cheese and allow to cook until the cheese begins to melt. Keep stirring. Finally add the cream cheese.

Grease a small pot/jar and pour in the cheese mix. Place in the fridge overnight, but preferably 12-24 hours. Note, you can let it sit in the fridge overnight and then in the morning turn the jar/pot over and place on a plate and naturally it will release from the jar so that you can remove the jar and cut into the brie.

Should last in the fridge atleast a week! I would suggest you keep it covered.

You can double or half this recipe depending on how much you want to make 😊 And try different vegan cheeses if you want flavour or add your own flavour if using a plain cheese.

If you try this, let me know what you think 😊 Don’t forget to tag me on Instagram(itsahealthylifestyle) or comment down below.