With Earth Day right around the corner, I’m making a conscious effort to think about my impact on this amazing earth of ours. I grew up in a family who recycled religiously, reused sour cream containers (and sugar bags for lunch bags – which was SO embarrassing!) and even composted. So at a young age, it was instilled in me that leaving as little of footprint as possible was of the utmost importance.

These days, I make the best effort I can to reuse, reduce and recycle. (And I’m proud that I’ve almost kicked my plastic water bottle habit!) But there is always room for improvement and that’s what is important to look at. In the coming months, my goal is to buy more local food – preferably straight from the source through a CSA membership or more frequent visits to the farmer’s market.

So why the plant-based recipes? It seems that every spring, I’m drawn to more plant-based foods and less meat. The term ‘plant-based eating’ has been growing in popularity but the phrase is a bit confusing – and I think that’s the idea. The short explanation is that it’s a vegan diet (while some may consume a limited amount of animal products like eggs or dairy) and it seems to me that it’s a vegan diet without the vegan junk food and without the (sometimes polarizing) vegan label. It’s real, whole, unprocessed food – full of plants – and most of the time it’s beautiful. (Learn more about plant-based diets here.)

But it’s not just about me. (Wait, what?!) A diet with more plants and less meat helps to reduce our ecological footprint (animal products require a lot of land, water and resources). As Mr. Pollan so wisely tells us, “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” And also? It’s delicious. Here are 5 plant-based (ok, vegan!) recipes that are so tasty and gorgeous that even the most stubborn of carnivores won’t miss the meat.

 

5 Plant-Based (Vegan) Recipes

5 Plant-Based (Vegan) Recipes | A Nutritionist Eats

1. This Vegan Green Chili Mac and Cheese has been on my list of recipes to make since…the first time I laid eyes on it. And while we typically think of mac and cheese falling into the junk food category, this cheese, made with cashews, is anything but. (image & recipe via Minimalist Baker)

5 Plant-Based (Vegan) Recipes | A Nutritionist Eats

2. I know. I’m craving tofu now too. This Crispy Baked Salt & Pepper Tofu is much easier than it seems – simply toss and bake – and enjoy. (image & recipe via Heartbeet Kitchen)

5 Plant-Based (Vegan) Recipes | A Nutritionist Eats

3. Herby, Peanutty, Noodly Salad is just that. This colorful salad is filled with fresh veggies and nutritious buckwheat noodles for a meal that screams spring to me. This post also gives some great insight on not giving yourself a vegan label and I pretty much love it.  (image & recipe via Eating for England)

5 Plant-Based (Vegan) Recipes | A Nutritionist Eats

4.  These Not-So-Sloppy Tempeh Joes made such a satisfying lunch, I’ve got to make them again soon. Don’t be put-off by the steps and ingredients, it’s worth it! In fact, I’d recommend doubling the recipe. (image & recipe via Chickypea)

5 Plant-Based (Vegan) Recipes | A Nutritionist Eats

5. No matter the label, almost all of us love dessert and I think that Banana Split Ice Cream Pie is the perfect way to end things. (Both a meal and this post.) I mean, bananas are roasted and then turned into banana ice cream which is laid into an almond flour crust and topped with coconut whipped cream and chocolate sauce. Come on! (image & recipe via The First Mess)

What is your favorite plant-based recipe or meal?

Toast Toppings | A Nutritionist Eats

7 toppings for your toast

I ate toast every single morning for a good two years. Seriously. Sometimes I would switch it up with some oats or a smoothie but I started my day with a sprouted bagel or two slices of sprouted bread toast for two years. It was also when I worked in a bakery so there was

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texas caviar rice & beans | a nutritionist eats

texas caviar rice & beans

First things first: Texas Caviar Rice & Beans is genius. I’m a big fan of bean salad (you’re aware of this: black bean & corn relish + more recent obsession with simple bean salads) so this recipe caught my eye almost immediately. But let’s back up. I was sent The Slim Down South Cookbook, Eating Well and

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egg avocado toast, breakfast recipe,

egg, avocado & cheese toast

I just have to share my newest breakfast obsession with you guys. It’s not even really a recipe, per say…but it is oh SO good and you definitely need to make it.  Simple food really is the best, isn’t it? The premise is a simple one, lightly toasted bread (or broiled if I’m at home

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self3

SELF Magazine {postworkout treat}

A few weeks ago, the October issue of SELF Magazine came out. And my name is in it.(!!!!!!!!!) The October weekender section (page 44) is all about fit motivation and I created a treat – perfect for postworkout snacking! It is a great little healthy treat to have around. Here is the exact recipe if

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ricotta on pizza, pizza with ricotta, dinner ideas, pizza recipes, quick healthy meals, vegetarian pizza recipe, ricotta recipes, meal ideas

simple & healthy: ricotta pizza

Martha (Stewart) strikes again. I don’t have many of her cookbooks, but I’m a regular on her site and appreciate her knack for beautiful recipes using simple ingredients. Her ricotta pizza combines simple ingredients that come together in minutes – perfect for weeknight dinners or those Friday nights when take-out is calling your name. If

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coffee

daily eats: 8.6.12

Hey Guys! Monday is over, who’s happy? I had a bizarre day on the bus front. I’m not sure if I told you or not, but I’m one of oh, 3 people in LA who can actually ride the bus. (Fine, that is an exaggeration.) But I do feel SO incredibly lucky that it is

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