30 Day Vegan


30 Day Vegan

Growing up with a chef as a mother does not allow for survival of a picky child. We were taught at a young age to have an open palate and to clean our plates; and minus the occasional toss of liverwurst behind the bookshelf, that’s exactly what we did. Honestly, until recently I had little appreciation for veganism. In my mind, it was a limiting and rather impractical lifestyle that certainly wasn’t for me. Regardless if veganism is conducive to your lifestyle we can’t discredit the obvious benefits of assimilating a predominantly plant based diet.

After listening to lectures shared by raw foods expert David Wolfe, and vegan MD, Neal Barnard, coupled with watching the documentary Knives Over Forks; I was inspired to expand my palate & open my mouth to the possibilities of veganism.

5 Reasons to try Veganism on for size

1. Conscious Consumption– few give up eating animals because they don’t like the way they taste.  Many refrain due to inhumane treatment and animal exploitation.
2. Eat Your Prana– energy transference is a concept of scientific construct. Many believe violent or depressed energy of the animal is preserved in its butchered flesh and therefore transferred to your body upon consumption.
3. Weight Loss– there’s no denying that eliminating animal products from your diet will in turn eliminate pounds from your mid-section.
4.  Longevity– I’d be curious to see if there are any such cases of devoted vegans ever having died from type 2 diabetes or heart disease. Eating a plant-based diet will likely extend your lifespan.
5.  You Are What you Eat– as cliché as it is, this statement maintains a great deal of credibility. Consuming a greater amount of foliage will actually change your body chemistry, leaving you smelling and tasting better!

Whether you’re interested in a complete transition to Veganism or resetting your palate with a fresh appreciation of whole foods I encourage you to commit yourself to joining my 30 day vegan challenge.


Set up a support system– Any task becomes less daunting in the company of others.

Research– Its unlikely that you prepare every meal for yourself, therefore it is unreasonable to assume that you will prepare every meal during your 30 day challenge. Fortunately, veganism is growing in popularity and options are expanding. Research your area and see which restaurants, café’s or supermarkets cater to vegan clientel. If you’re currently residing in Hawaii I could recommend a few joints.
Greens & Vines is an exceptional restaurant offering a complete menu of raw, vegan items.
Blue Tree Café offers an extensive array of vegan juices, smoothies, and pastries.
Down to Earth is a local supermarket that carries virtually every item listed in my recipes.

Visit your local bookstore or library– I will provide you with a months worth of menu items. However, my menu plan may vary from yours; some recipes may appeal to you, others may not. It’s important for you to select recipes that excite you, no need to chow down food that doesn’t please your specific palate.

Prepare– For some, becoming a vegan for 30 days is not a foreign concept. Perhaps you’re already embracing raw foods, or vegetarian concepts into your daily diet. For others, the idea of becoming a vegan for 30 days is as unfamiliar as Antarctica. Take time to prepare mentally, physically, and financially. I would recommend easing into the transition over time, perhaps taking the challenge in two months time. Try eliminating all processed foods (anything that comes prepared in a box or plastic container), or refined starches (white flour, sugar, or rice) for the month preceding your vegan challenge.

Supplement- Generally, I discourage supplementation.  It is true that nutrients are best received from their natural source.  However, in all practicality, it is unlikely that one will receive adequate amounts of Omegas; and a deficiency in Vitamin B12 is inevitable (considering B12 is derived strictly from animal products).  As for Omegas, I would recommend the brand Flora.  They carry a premium oil bend called “7 Sources,” it’s 100% plant derived Omega (3, 6 & 9) with EPA & DHA.  As for B12, I choose a raw supplement provided by Garden of Life.  Both supplements can be found at your local health food store.

Get excited!– Ask yourself why you’re taking on this challenge. Are you becoming a 30 day vegan for yourself or to please someone else? Challenges are easy to fold on when they aren’t 100% your choice. How badly do you want this? What are your intentions and expectations? Remind yourself when things become challenging; why did I sign on to this?


“Eat Food, Mostly Plants, Not too Much.” -Michael Pollan

Remember these recipes are simply suggestions. You are not limited to these selections, and you are certainly not limited to three meals a day. You can eat to your hearts desire with three simple limitations:
1. No animal products (or by-products)
2. Cook when you can
3. Limit your consumption of pre-packaged items

*Any item with an asterisk will have a recipe listed at the end of the page.

Superfoods smoothie
1 packet unsweetened frozen acai concentrate or ½ cup frozen blueberries
1 small banana
1 scoop Vega choc-o-lot protein or 1TBL raw cacao powder
1 tsp maca powder (optional)
1 tsp camu camu berry powder (optional)
½ tsp Rei-shi mushroom (optional)
coconut or tap water
Blend & enjoy

Apple pie for breakfast
1 large green apple
1 small banana
2 cups of spinach
dash of cinnamon
dash of nutmeg
unadulterated coconut flakes
coconut water

Fruit filled papaya
½ papaya gutted
squeeze of lime
fill with non-dairy yogurt (optional)
fill with choice fresh fruit
top with raw granola
sprinkle chia or hemp seed (optional)

½ cup steel cut oats, or 100% whole grain rolled oats
Dried cherries or raisins
Drizzle maple syrup (preferably organic)

I strongly encourage you to begin experimenting with Quinoa!! Quinoa, though cooked and eaten like a grain, is technically a seed related to spinach, chard and beets. Naturally gluten free, this “supergrain” is a complete protein (containing all the amino acids necessary for our nutritional needs). Quinoa comes in a variety of colors (black, red, white) all offering slight flavor variation as well as nutritional content. Its mild flavor allows for accommodation in both sweet and savory dishes.

Quinoa cakes
One of my favorites!!
Quinoa cooks just like rice. Rinse first. Use 2:1 ratio, 1 cup quinoa to 2 cups water. Pour ingredients into a pan, bring to a boil, reduce to low-mid heat, cover and wait until all the water is consumed (about 20 minutes). The quinoa should be soft, yet firm (not mushy).
1 cup cooked quinoa
3/4 cup whole wheat or buckwheat flour
2 TSP baking powder
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 TBL coconut oil, plus more for pan
1/4 cup almond milk
2 tablespoons organic maple syrup, plus more for serving
In a medium bowl, whisk together quinoa, flour, baking powder and salt. In another bowl, whisk together butter, milk & syrup until smooth. Add wet mix to dry and combine. Lightly coat a fry pan with coconut oil and fry cakes like you would pancakes. Enjoy!

Tofu scramble
Olive oil for sautéing
1 medium sized yellow onion or 3 scallions, finely chopped
1 teaspoon minced garlic, or garlic powder
10 mushrooms
1 bell pepper
1 package (16oz) firm or extra-firm tofu drained and rinsed
1 cup fresh spinach
½ teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon cumin
½ teaspoon paprika
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast (tastes like cheese)
sea salt to taste
ground pepper to taste
Cook like you would scrambled eggs, crumble tofu through fingers into bite size pieces.

Not just for breakfast banana split
1 banana
fresh sliced strawberries
½ cup fresh blueberries
6 oz nondairy yogurt
¼ cup raw granola
sprinkle bee pollen *optional
drizzle maple syrup
Load bowl with nondairy yogurt, top with fresh fruit, sprinkle with raw granola, drizzle maple syrup

Nut butter bread
Ezekiel or 100% whole grain bread, toasted
Spread with choice natural nut butter (almond, sunflower, peanut)
Top with raw honey or unadulterated jam

Breakfast Burrito
½ cup wild rice
1 tomato
handful cilantro
¼ white onion
½ cup black beans
½ avocado
whole grain tortilla

Cinnamon & spice quinoa
1 cup cooked quinoa
1 banana sliced
1 TBL coconut oil
1 apple diced
dash cinnamon
dash nutmeg
dash sea salt
Fold ingredients together

1 cup finely chopped, peeled tomato
½ cup finely chopped green pepper
2 teaspoons snipped parsley
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ teaspoon Worcestershire
2 cups tomato juice
Cracked pepper
½ cup finely chopped celery
½ cup finely chopped cucumber
1 teaspoon chives
2/3 tablespoons tarragon wine vinegar
Best prepared ahead of time, and chilled for 4 hours before serving
Top with dill and serve with crusty bread *optional

Veggie Sandwich
Hearty whole wheat bread
Handful alfalfa sprouts
Sliced tomato
Sliced cucumber
Julienned carrots
Hummus* or olive tapenade*
*store bought or homemade, recipes at bottom of page

Caprese Salad
Fresh arugula (rocket)
Grape or cherry tomatoes
½ avocado
sprinkle sunflower seeds
sea salt
splash balsalmic* or red wine vinegar
splash olive or grapeseed oil

Fruit salad
Dried cherries
Splash walnut or olive oil
Splash balsalmic vinegar*

Cold penne pasta
1 lb whole grain penne pasta
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup artichoke hearts, quartered, canned ok if soaked in water or oil only
½ cup kalamata olives, pitted
1 fennel bulb, halved, cored and thinly sliced
1 bunch arugula
1 cup chopped tomatoes
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
1 tablepoon lemon juice
freshly ground pepper

Vegan burgers & home fried potatoes
*Store bought vegan burgers ok
2 sweet potatoes, or 4-5 redskins
1 tablespoon olive oil
sprinkle sea salt
sprinkle fresh ground pepper
sprinkle cayenne pepper
Mix ingredients, spread on pan and bake at 450 degrees until soft (around 20 minutes)
Serve with side basalmic or malt vinegar

Sweet potato & chickpea burgers
baked sweet potato
1 cup soaked (or canned) garbanzo beans
pinch fresh cilantro
pinch fresh parsley
dash cayenne
dash cumin
dash tumeric
dash sea salt
fresh ground pepper
Mix together in food processor and form patties
Saute in a bit of grapeseed oil

Panini with lemon-basil pesto
Fresh pesto*
Roasted red bell peppers*
3 zuccini squash, sliced and roasted or grilled
1 medium sized red onion, sliced
1-2 medium sized tomatoes (beefsteak are really nice with this sandwich), sliced
1 ripe avocado, peeled and sliced
8 large slices of Italian bread, such as ciabatta ( I substitute pumpernickel)
2 TBL basalmic vinegar
Fresh ground pepper
Oil for brushing
Drizzle each bread slice with balsalmic vinegar and sprinkle fresh ground pepper.
Compile veggies and top with other slice of bread. Brush each side of sandwich with olive oil and pan fry or grill. Serve immediately. Yield: 4 panini

Roasted red pepper wraps
2 whole grain flour tortillas
1 cup hummus*
1 cup shredded lettuce (spinach or arugula better)
2 roasted red peppers,* sliced
2 carrots, peeled and graded
2 avocados, sliced
3/4 cup alfalfa sprouts
salt and pepper to taste
Spread tortilla with hummus. Add vegetables. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Wrap and cut in half.

Bean Salad
1 cup green beans
1 cup cooked black beans
1 cup cooked kidney beans
½ small red onion, finely chopped
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
1 teaspoon chopped fresh chives
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon dijon mustard

Curried quinoa
1 cup quinoa
choice veggies (I make all sorts of variations of this dish)
handful fresh peas
diced red bell pepper
diced sweet onion
1 carrot, chopped
handful dried cranberries
2 TBL coconut oil
1 TBL curry
1 TSP tumeric
(This is a great dish to experiment with, it never goes wrong. I’ll show you a second rendition following this recipe).
While cooking the quiona I stir-fry the vegetables, leaving thing such as fresh peas or tomatoes to be added raw, at the end. With this particular dish I’ve selected coconut oil as my lipid, therefore I’ll saute the vegetables in 1 TBL coconut oil, adding sea salt and fresh ground pepper to taste. Once the vegetables and quinoa are cooked, I’ll add them together and may add another TBL of coconut oil depending on the flavor and consistency. From here it’s time to add the curry and tumeric, and more salt & pepper if need be.

Clean quinoa
1 cup cooked quinoa
1/2 cucumber, diced
handful cherry or grape tomatoes
handful fresh cilantro
1 avocado
1 cup fresh arugula, chopped
sea salt & fresh ground pepper to taste
1-2 TBL olive or grapeseed oil
fresh lemon
While quinoa is cooking, chop and dice the vegetables and leave in their raw state. When the quinoa is finished add all the ingredients together and serve. Easy & delightful!

Fantastic Falafels
(these are really difficult without a food processor or vitamix, they are also rather time consuming yet entirely worthwhile)
1 cup dried & soaked chickpeas
1/4 large yellow onion
2 TBL fresh parsley
2 TBL fresh cilantro
1/2-1 TSP sea salt
1/2-1 TSP dried hot red pepper
4 cloves of garlic
1 TSP cumin
1 TSP baking powder
4-6 TBL whole wheat or buckwheat flour
grapeseed oil (for frying)
Throw all items except oil, baking powder and flour into the food processor and pulse until combined (small chunks are ok). Add flour and baking powder at the end. The consistency should be able to form a firm ball. Form into small patties and fry in grapeseed oil. Serve with hummus. Yield: 20 balls.
*These save for days and make quick and easy leftovers. Simply fry what you’ll consume in one sitting so that your leftovers are fresh.

Pesto Pasta
1 cup whole grain pasta
1/2 cup cherry or grape tomatoes
1/4 cup artichoke hearts, drained
1/4 cup kalamata olives (pitted)
1/4 red onion, diced
Pesto* to taste

Black bean patties with pineapple guacamole
Makes 8 patties, you will have leftovers
1 cup diced fresh pineapple
1 cup peeled and diced daikon
1 roasted red bell pepper, minced
1 jalapeno, seeded and diced
2 avocados, peeled, pitted and diced
½ red onion, minced
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons lime juice
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon flaxseed oil
2 garlic cloves, peeled
1 jalapeno, halved and seeded
¼ onion, peeled
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 ½ teaspoon cumin
4 cups cooked black beans
2/3 cup breadcrumbs or cornmeal
fresh ground black pepper
extra virgin olive oil or grapeseed oil for frying
Preparing patties
Mince together in a food processor or blender: garlic, jalapeno, onion, clilantro, cumin.and flax seed oil. Pulse briefly and add 2 cups black beans, bread cumbs or cornmeal and process until just combined. Over-processing will make your mixture too mushy. Transfer to large mixing bowl and fold in beans. Season with pepper.
Heat skillet over medium-high heat. Add 2 tablespoons oil. Form bean mixute into patties. Fry 3-4 minutes in oil.

Warm spinach salad
Yield: 4-6 servings
12-14 ounces baby spinach, rinsed and dried
1 medium-sized red onion, thinly sliced
1 cup pecans, toasted and coarsely chopped
1/4 cup olive oil
1 garlic clove, pressed
1 cup balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon molasses or maple syrup
1/2 TSP ground black pepper
1 TSP truffle or grapeseed oil (optional)
Combine spinach, red onion, and pecans in large bowl. In a small saucepan, warm olive oil and sauge garlic over low heat, just enough to warm the oil and allow the garlic flavor to infuse. After a few minutes, add vinegar, molasses and pepper. Whisking constantly, bring almost to a boil, remove from heat and cool until just warm. Add truffle oil, if desired and stir to combine. Pour over spinach, toss to coat leaves and serve immediately.

Polenta Hearts (or squares)
4 cups water
1 1/2 cups coarse cornmeal or polenta
1/4 cup almond milk
1-2 TSP salt
2-3 TSP nutritional yeast flakes
1/2 cup finely chopped sun-dried tomatoes
2 TBL minced fresh basil
2 TBL minced fresh parsley
1 TBL olive oil
Heat water to a boil in a saucepan. When the water has boiled, add polenta or cornmeal and stir frequently over low-med heat, being careful it does not boil over. Slowly add mil,, 1 TSP salt, and nutritional yeast, and stir until the liquid is absorbed and the polenta thickens, 5-10 minutes. Add the sun-dried tomatoes, basil, and parsley, stir for one more minute and remove from heat. Taste and salt as necessary.
At this point the polenta will be thick (and getting thicker). Once you remove it from the heat you can serve it immediately. However, to form it into shapes, let it sit for an hour. When ready to serve, punch out heart shapes, or cut into squares and set aside. Heat olive oil over medium heat. Sear the polenta hearts until golden on both sides and heated through. This is a nice dish served over salad or red sauce such as roasted red pepper coulis.

Roasted red pepper coulis
2 roasted red bell peppers* (from a jar or homemade)
1/4 cup almond milk
3 TBL unsweetened shredded coconut
pinch of cayenne pepper
salt and pepper to taste
Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until creamy. Pour into a small-sized sauce pan and heat over low heat to warm, approximately 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Do not boil.

The following is a list of recipes for the asterisked menu items. Homemade is generally better, however if you have no interest, or no time to prepare the items all can be bought pre-packaged and prepared.

Pesto sauce
Yield: 1/2 cup
3 cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup raw pine nuts
2 or 3 whole garlic cloves, peeled
3 TBL extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
squeeze fresh lemon
Combine basil, pine nuts and garlic in a food processor (or vitamix) and blend until ingredients begin to form a paste, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary. Drizzle in a tablespoon or two of oil, along with the salt, and process until smooth and creamy adding additional oil, if needed. Add salt little by little to taste.

1 can chickpeas or 1 cup dried (and soaked)
1 tbs tahini
freshly squeezed lemon (1+ lemon)
Fresh cracked pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil
Blend and add water or more olive oil depending on desired consistency
Serve with parsley and paprika as well as kalamata olives
Delicious snack with snap peas, carrot or bell pepper sticks

Olive tapenade
1 cup pitted black and green olives
2 tablespoons capers, rinced and drained
1 garlic clove, peeled
1 teaspoon garlic clove, peeled
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
2 tablespoons olive oil
1-2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
In a food processor, or nutri-bullet combine ingredients and pulse until coarse paste

Roasted red bell peppers
To roast peppers, place them on a baking sheet in a 500*F oven. Roast until their skins are evenly blistered and browned, about 25 minutes, turning them 2 or 3 times so they roast evenly. Remove them from the oven and cover them with a kitchen towel.
When the peppers are cool enough to handle, pull out their stems; peel away their blackened skins; open the peppers up; and remove their seeds, using a teaspoon to pick up any stray ones. Place roasted peppers in a bowl, submerge them in olive oil, and cover the bowl with plastic wrap before storing them in the refrigerator.

Basic balsalmic vinagrette
1 garlic clove, peeled
1 small shallot diced
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
¼ cup balsalmic vinegar
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
fresh ground pepper
(makes about a cup, you can prep more ahead of time if you like)
Cracked pepper

Kale chips

Chop kale into bite size pieces
Drizzle with olive oil and bake at 350 degrees until crispy

Sesame carrots
Carrots, sliced into rounds
Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil
In large sauté pan over medium heat, sauté sliced carrots in olive oil until just soft (about 6 minutes). Remove from heat, toss with sesame oil and bake in oven at 350 for about 30 minutes. Check frequently to prevent from burning. Remove from oven and toss with toasted sesame seeds.

Bean salad
1 can organic black beans
1 can organic pinto beans
1 can organic corn
½ white onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
Lime juice, 3+ limes
Cracked pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil
Delicious with wholesome tortilla chips

Green goddess dip
12 ounces extra firm silken tofu
3 scallions, chopped
3 tablespoons fresh parsley or cilantro
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoon maple syrup
juice of one lemon
2 teaspoons mellow white miso
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Wrap tofu in paper towels and press gently to remove excess water. Place in food processor or blender and process until smooth. Add remaining ingredients and process to combine. Add water one tablespoon at a time to achieve desired consistency. Cover and refrigerate to thicken and allow flavors to blend. Store in airtight container in refrigerator for up to 3 days. Delightful with sugar snap peas, celery or carrot sticks, or hearty crackers.

Lemony artichoke dip
1 garlic clove, peeled
1 shallot, peeled
2 tablespoons lemon juice
½ cup firm, silken tofu
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
¾ cup great northern beans
½ teaspoon powdered mustard
¼ teaspoon ground white pepper
1 4 oz can chopped green chilies
2 ½ cup canned artichoke hearts, drained
Process all ingredients except for the artichoke hearts, add them last to save chunks.

Homemade trail mix
Raw nuts
Dried fruits, unsweetened
Power nuts:
Almonds, brazilian nuts, peanuts, walnuts
Power fruits:
Gogi berries, apricots, figs, prunes
Power seeds:
Sunflower, pumpkin, flax
Power proteins:
Carob chunks

The following are recovery blend recipes intended to be consumed post-workout:
Banana Frappe
1 cup almond or soy milk
½ cup soft tofu
1 banana
1 tbs raw cacao or Vega protein powder
pinch ground nutmeg
1 TSP maca powder (optional)

Berry Frappe
1 cup almond milk
½ cup soft tofu
½ cup berries, fresh or frozen
½ lemon, juiced
1 TSP camu camu berry (optional)
1 TSP rei-shi mushroom (optional immunity booster)

Carob-Orange Shake
1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (or blended orange)
½ cup non-dair yogurt
1 TBL raw cacao powder or Vega protein blend
1 tsp orange zest

Chunky Monkey
1 cup almond milk
½ cup soft tofu
1 banana
1 TBL raw peanut butter
1 TBL raw cacao powder or Vega protein mix
1 TBL unadulterated coconut flakes

Date Shake
1 cup almond milk
½ cup soft tofu
1 tbs chopped almonds
3-4 large pitted dates

Berry Kale
Handful fresh kale
1 small banana
1/2 cup choice berries (frozen if necessary)
1/2 cup almond milk
1 TBL sunflower seed or peanut butter

Chronic chocolate mousse
Here’s how:
1 avocado
1 banana
2 TBL raw cacao powder
1 TBL unadulterated peanut butter
1 TSP cinnamon
1/2 TSP nutmeg
1 TBL organic maple syrup
1/2 TSP vanilla bean
1/2 TSP maca powder (optional)
Blend & let sit in refrigerator at least 10 minutes before serving.

Natural Dark Chocolate
Read the label! Most natural dark chocolate (80% cocoa or higher) is produced with minimal sugar, and in the absence of butter and milk, yet tastes delightfully decadent!


Question what you think you know about carbohydrates!
Carb cutting dietary theories such as Atkins have given carbohydrates an unjustified bad rap. Our bodies are designed to derive the bulk of its energy from carbohydrates. Carbohydrates are a necessary component of a healthy diet. However, not all carbs are created equal.
The following is a list of carbs to enjoy, followed by carbs to avoid.

brown rice
whole oats
millet (gluten-free)
quinoa (gluten-free)
rye berries
wheat berries
wild rice

ANYTHING WHITE! Generally, white grains have been polished, therefore wiping away all of their nutritional content. White starches such as white bread, pasta, rice, potatoes and cereal basically breakdown in the body as sugar, which inevitably breaks down as fat. This is why the Atkins diet can be temporarily successful. When people indiscriminately cut out carbs they are cutting out the good as well as the bad.

Consciously consume.  Become aware of what you’re putting into your mouth especially 3 hours prior to bedtime. Digestion slows during sleep. I’ve been trying to implement the practice of limiting myself to unadulterated fruits or veggies three hours prior to bedtime. This provides my system with a bit of a break, reduces bloating and fatigue, and promotes higher quality slumber.

Give gratitude daily! A positive mindset full of gratitude is your most powerful tool. “Life is 10 Percent What Happens to You and 90 Percent How You React to it.”

Slow down
Chew every bite
Try not to eat on the go
Give thanks to your food as well as the preparer

Change your relationship with food and you will change your life!

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