The Vegan Diaries Part II

vegan finds at farmers market

Hi! How are you?

I am seriously wonderful. I haven’t felt this inspired in a long time. Maybe it’s all the vegetables… remember that one time I decided to go vegan for 3 weeks?

My quest for a better, healthier me is going really well. I thought the vegan lifestyle was going to be impossible, but it’s not. It requires more thinking and preparing, but a little more thought when it comes to food choices goes a long way.

Scott and I went to the Portland Farmers Market last Saturday. I am a total nerd for farmers and people who make their own bread, jams, etc.

farmers market

We got quite the healthy haul. But, first things first:

vegan pizza

Guys. Vegan cheese pizza. I may have peed myself a bit when I saw this gem available from Via Chicago. Made with Daiya (vegan) cheese and mushrooms, this was one of the best slices of pizza I have ever had. Somebody praise Him.

Okay, so back to what we got:

  • kale
  • spinach
  • asparagus
  • potatoes
  • whole wheat bread
  • vegan block cheese
  • vegan fusilli pasta
  • buckwheat flour

There wasn’t a ton of fruit options, but we went to Trader Joe’s yesterday and picked up a ton of cool stuff including:

  • strawberries
  • blueberries
  • white bean hummus
  • basil leaves
  • cilantro
  • mushrooms
  • stir fry kit
  • shredded carrots
  • salad mix
  • soy cheese
  • vegan butter
  • vegan cream cheese
  • almond milk
  • soy creamer
  • spices
  • sauces
  • oil free salad dressing
  • quinoa

And the best part? We did not buy a single frozen item. Let me explain why this is a big deal. I am the queen of frozen foods. I have frozen dinners available at all times. I will choose a frozen meal over a fresh meal if it’s easier to prepare/consume.

Clearly, not all frozen foods are bad. Amy’s is an awesome brand with natural, organic and even gluten free frozen food options. Frozen vegetables are awesome too.

But even so, I am ridiculously proud of myself for not even exploring the frozen food aisle. Somehow, I even resisted the frozen desserts. Who am I?!

I’m not going to lie, I kind of felt like a ninja scouring TJ’s for vegan alternatives and reading the ingredient list for everything we put in the cart.

I can’t wait to share some really yummy recipes with you in the next few weeks!

You’re probably wondering, how is all of this actually going? Has she really turned into a pretentious, vegan Portlander?

It’s actually amazing. I’m learning how to read ingredient lists and nutrition labels. I’m spending more time in the kitchen. I’m baking again! I feel motivated to know exactly what I am putting into my body for every single meal.

I had to ask, “Is this vegan?” at a food truck the other night and felt like I was in an episode of Portlandia (which I feel like a LOT you know, living here and all, but this was extra-Portlandy).

For me, this is exciting. It’s not about saving the planet and it’s not about saving animals. It’s about improving my personal health and about making food and cooking fun again.

I have felt amazing these last 5 days (no stomach problems!) and I hope to continue to feel energized and inspired by this new lifestyle.

It is easy eating vegan in Portland. I couldn’t have picked a better city to try this out in. There are hundreds of exclusively vegan/vegetarian restaurants here, not to mention the other thousand that serve vegan dishes just because!

vegan bowl

vegan pancakes

I’ve been keeping a food diary of everything I eat, which I’ll share soon.

Want to join the challenge?

I’d love for you to adopt either a vegan or vegetarian lifestyle with me! Only for the next 2.5 weeks (or longer if you choose). Let me know you’re joining in either the comments below or on Twitter with #3weeknomeat.

Happy Tuesday!

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