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Food

10 Vegan Snacks Your Kids Will Love

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Kids have small stomachs that easily fill up, and they also metabolize at a faster rate than adults. Due to this, it’s a good idea for kids to eat after every few hours or have at least two snacks between meals. A kid on a normal diet can easily achieve this, but for a vegan kid, you have to think out of the box in order to have an ample back up of vegan snacks. These 10 vegan snacks will offer enjoyable food with plenty of nutrients.

1. Hummus and veggies

Homemade hummus with fresh vegetables image

Homemade hummus with fresh vegetables

These offers one of the most balanced vegan snacks. Hummuses are rich in fiber, healthy fats and proteins. The snack can be in the form of a sandwich, wrap, or pinwheels. Use chickpeas to make hummus, and the veggies can be of your choice for example carrots, lettuce, spinach, and mushrooms. This kind of snack is also a creative way of consuming more vegetables. Prepare the hummus over the weekend as well as chop the veggies of choice for an easy mix on weekdays.

2. Granola bars

Homemade granola bars image

Homemade granola bars

These vegan snacks foods are mostly made from rolled oats, nuts, puffed rice, and literally a variety of other things. You can even make granola bars from pumpkin paste or use chopped apples to make your granola bar look yummy. The essential components are the oats and an adhesive paste to hold them together. From there, you can get more creative on the sweetener or other toppings to use. In most of the times, nuts and fruits are good options.

3. Smoothies

Homemade healthy berry smoothie image

Homemade healthy berry smoothie

Smoothies not only make great vegan snacks but are also very healthy, rich in vitamins and easy to make. You can make it from bananas, melons, avocado, berries, coconut, chocolate, maple, and almond milk. You can get as creative as you want by mixing a variety of your favorite fruits within your smoothie. Oranges, pineapples, kiwi, and apples are some of the most popular ingredients. No matter what selection you make it’s sure to make for a tasty vegan snack.

4. Organic vegan crackers

Pecan and Cranberry Crackers with Seeds Image

Pecan and Cranberry Crackers with Seeds

These make a great snack option if you want something ready to eat direct from the stores. Most of ready to eat crackers are made with a variety of whole grains and seeds. They are gluten-free, and you can add a variety of yummy toppings depending on what you have at home or ready to buy. The toppings can be peanut butter, banana paste, strawberry or almond butter. You can also take the crackers with a variety of fruits like avocados or bananas.

5. Energy balls and bites

Matcha energy balls from dates and almonds image

Matcha energy balls from dates and almonds

These are some snacks you can prepare if you have a tight schedule. As the title suggests, you can make them round balls or rectangular shaped bars. They are easy to prepare and store. You can prepare a bunch of energy balls and bites during the weekend and store them in a fridge. You just have to pick one or two when the urge to eat snack knocks. They can be prepared from hemp seeds, ground flax, almonds, cashews, pecan, oatmeal, gingerbread, and a variety of more bases.

6. Vegan Pizza

rainbow vegan pizza image

Rainbow vegan pizza

These make for a great replacement of the traditional pizza. This type of pizza is not only delicious to eat, but also fast to cook. Check out our five best vegan pizza recipes that take just a few minutes to cook before relishing in that oh so appetizing pizza. Serving vegan pizza for your kids as a snack will be sure to put a smile on your kids’ faces and keep them happy and satisfied.

7. Tofu Fingers

Tofu steak with Snow Peas and Rocket Salad image

Tofu

You can also refer to these as bean curds and are a great source of proteins as well as essential amino acids. A variety of toppings like arrowroot flour, garlic, ginger, cherry, and any other desired ground topping can be used to enrich tofu fingers. Make your tofu fingers mostly from soybeans. You will require an adhesive agent like soy sauce, vinegar, agave, or olive oil. Get more creative while preparing tofu fingers to make them yummy and more nutritious. You should avoid genetically modified soybeans at all cost.

8. Skewed fruit salads and puddings

Chia pudding with berries image

Chia pudding with berries

Rather than taking fruit salads from a bowl, you can add some creativity to your vegan snacks. Salads are among the easiest vegan snacks that can be creatively made from a variety of foods. Chop the fruits of your choice into nice rectangular and circular shapes and arrange them in alternation on the skewer. Some of the fruits you can use for this vegan snack food are apples, pineapples, banana, strawberries, dates, kiwi fruits and other variety of fruits that might make a tasty snack.

9. Cashew Cheese Balls

Cashew Cheese balls image

Cashew cheese balls

Traditionally cheese used to come from milk, but are you aware that there is vegan cheese? Cashews plus some flavorings and spicing agents are used to make it. By mixing the cheese with a variety of products like potato starch, bread crumbs, flour, chopped ginger, black pepper, coriander leaves, lemon juice, and any other veggies or fruit constituents as you may deem fit you get tasty cheese balls. They are rich in proteins, vitamins B, fibers, calcium, magnesium, vitamin E, and other nutrients depending on what you use to make the cheese balls.

10. Vegan sandwiches

Vegan sandwiches with avocado, watermelon radish and tomatoes image

Vegan sandwiches with avocado, watermelon radish, and tomatoes

Spread some nut butter or hummus on the bread and fill it with whatever vegan sandwich products you would like to use. Some of the fillings you can use for sandwich include avocado, tomato, cucumber, pickles, mushroom, carrot, vegan cheese, etc. You can also use fruit or berries as the fillings. Almost anything around the house as long as you prepare it well and make it tasty is a good ingredient for a sandwich.

Making vegan snacks for kids has never been so easy

From the above vegan snacks options, there is no genuine reason why you should not be able to make a snack for your kids at home within the shortest time possible. You can also buy ready to use snacks like oatmeal. If you have time, you can also involve your kids in making the vegan snacks. However, the best option is to prepare them during the weekend and store them in a fridge for use during the weekdays.

Food

This Is Why I love Vegan Matcha Cookies And Cupcakes

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Vegan Matcha cookies and cupcakes

Matcha cookies are easy to make and an excellent breakfast addition. But how well do you know your matcha powder? Matcha, originally from the Chinese heritage (Although associated with the Japanese more often), is a green colored powder ground from green tea leaves (Camellia sinensis plant). These leaves typically grow for 3 weeks while shaded before they are harvested and processed. Processing involves steaming and removing the veins and stems before drying and grinding. Compared to the other forms of tea, matcha powder is rich in caffeine and theanine. Since it is rich in antioxidants, it is an excellent antidote for illnesses like cancer and diabetes.

The Benefits of Matcha Powder

matcha powder image

Acne Solution

Matcha powder has incredible benefits for your skin. It contains antioxidants that fight bacteria causing acne and therefore excellent for your beauty routine. If you suffer from regular acne outbreaks, make a face mask by adding a tablespoon of matcha powder with lemongrass oil and then apply on the face daily. This mixture will also help to eliminate any existing scars.

An Excellent Health Supplement

In addition to antioxidants, matcha is rich in beneficial micronutrients such as theanine, beta-carotene, vitamins B complex, A, E, and C, and chlorophyll.

Slows Down Several Types of Illnesses

From several scientific tests documented, we can conclude that matcha has a significant effect on illnesses such as diabetes.

Weight Loss

I look at this in two ways. First of all, taking a cup of tea before meals makes you fuller and you, therefore, end up eating less. Secondly, matcha contains a good amount of EGCG (epigallocatechin gallate) which promotes the oxidation of fat in your body.

It Makes You More Alert

This is quite obvious with tea, isn’t it? But while most teas give you an overdose of caffeine, matcha gives your body l-theanine to enhance your cognitive performance.

Vegan Matcha Cookies Recipes

Let me now discuss a few ways you can enjoy a healthy dose of matcha powder in your breakfast using my all-time favorite matcha cookies.

Gluten-Free Matcha Cookies

Vegan Matcha cookies balls image

Ingredients

  • Homemade vegan butter – two sticks.
  • Agave syrup – half cup.
  • Vanilla extract – few drops.
  • Gluten-free flour (buckwheat flour or quinoa flour) – two cups.
  • Ground cashew nuts – half cup.
  • Green matcha powder – one tablespoon.
  • Powdered cardamom – 1 teaspoon.
  • Herbal sea salt to taste.

Tip: To dust the cookies you will need a ½ tablespoon of green matcha powder mixed with a ½ tablespoon of powdered coconut sugar.

Procedure

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Line the baking tray with a baking sheet to make cleaning easier and to avoid sticking or burning at the bottom. Alternatively, you could spray it with olive oil.

Beat the butter in a mixing bowl until fluffy. Now add the syrup and vanilla extract to the mixture while you mix well.

Sift in the dry ingredients (flour, cashew nuts, cardamom, salt, and matcha) and fold them into the liquid mixture. When the dough starts to thicken, get your hands in there and form a workable dough but don’t over knead.

Wrap the dough with cling wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour or chill overnight. I love baking cookies in the morning. The aroma is alluring.

When you’re ready to bake, shape the dough into balls of your preferred size and place them on the baking sheet. If you have an ice cream scope, use it for even shapes. Bake for 15 minutes until they start to brown at the top.

Remove and cool the cookies in a cooling rack. Once cooled, dust the matcha and coconut sugar mixture and serve.

Mint, Mixed Nuts, and Matcha Cookies

matcha cookies

Ingredients

  • Ground walnuts – 1 cup.
  • Ground almonds – ½ cup.
  • Green matcha powder – one tablespoon.
  • Quinoa flour (or buckwheat flour if you like) – 1/3 cup.
  • Cocoa powder – 1/3 cup.
  • Mint extract (crash a few mint leaves using a mortar and pestle) – few drops (it can be overpowering).
  • Dates – 1 handful.
  • Soy milk – ½ cup.
  • Herbal sea salt to taste.

Tip: To garnish the cookies, you can make a mixture of 1 ½ tablespoon of agave syrup, 1 tablespoon of matcha powder, and 2 drops of peppermint extract.

Procedure

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a large bowl, mix all the ingredient using an electric mixer until consistent dough starts to form. Cover the bowl with a lid or cling film and place it in the refrigerator for 15 minutes until the dough is firm.

Dust a smooth surface with a little flour and roll out the dough using a rolling pin. Cut the desired shapes with a cookie cutter and bake them on a lined baking tray for 10 minutes or until well done.

Garnish and serve.

Note:

Cookies keep well frozen. Freeze them immediately they cool down in an airtight container and keep enjoying for the next 6 months.

Matcha Cupcakes

vegan matcha cupcakes

Ingredients

  • Gluten-free plain white flour – 1 ¼ cups.
  • Baking powder – 1 ¼ tablespoon.
  • A pinch of salt.
  • Matcha powder – 3 tablespoons.
  • Coconut sugar – ¾ cup.
  • Almond milk – ½ cup.
  • Extra virgin Olive oil – ¼ cup.

Procedure

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a large mixing bowl sieve the flour, matcha, baking powder, coconut sugar, and salt and mix them well. Create a well and pour in the wet ingredients (milk and olive oil). Using a wooden spoon, fold in taking care not to over mix.

Pour the mixture in cupcake molds and bake for 15-25 minutes.

A quick test when baking is to insert a toothpick. If it comes out clean, your queen cakes are done.

So What Makes Matcha Powder a More Superior Form of Green Tea?

If you’re familiar with Moringa and other versions of green teas, you might be wondering why matcha?

matcha powder benefits image

First and foremost, we ingest matcha in its whole form. With other teas, you have to filter the tea leaves and drink the diluted concoction.

Secondly, matcha does not undergo oxidation to mature its flavor, unlike the other teas. On the contrary, it is cured (via steaming) immediately it is harvested to prevent oxidation. And consequently, matcha has a lovely earthy flavor: Because most of the natural fragrances, nutritional compounds, and colors are preserved.

Finally (maybe I should have started with this one), the cultivation of Camellia sinensis plant (the source of Matcha), is in such a way that the plant has zero exposure to sunlight. Biologically, the lack of sunlight stimulates chlorophyll production. This makes matcha rich in the amino acid theanine, which has numerous health benefits.

In Conclusion

The above recipes should awaken your creativity. However, feel free to experiment with other versions of the ingredients. And in case the dough is too firm, add a tablespoon or two of water, you’ll be fine. And in the kitchen, other than baking matcha cookies use the powder to flavor your drinks. You can buy matcha online or at your local groceries.

 

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Food

Vegan Ketogenic Diet: How Does It Work?

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There are some diets that if you decide to adopt; be ready to answer a dozen questions on your choice. One among them is the vegan ketogenic diet. But what is it? It is a diet that doesn’t advocate for taking animal products and byproducts. The diet also goes against the famous formulae of a balanced diet that advocates for most of the calories to be from carbs. On the contrary, vegan ketogenic diets get their calories from fats.

Best rules to follow in order to stay on a vegan ketogenic diet:

  • First, limit the intake of carbs to 35 grams per day.
  • Get rid of all the animal products and byproducts from your food.
  • Use low carbs vegetables in your diet.
  • 70% of the energy you require should be from plant-based fats.
  • Plant-based proteins should be the second source of calories for your body; this can account for 10-20%.
  • Lastly, consider taking some supplements of vitamins, iron, zinc, and any other micro deficient in your meal.

The vegan ketogenic diet developed from ketogenic diet concepts, but the involved parties were vegans. A ketogenic diet advocates that you get 80% of your calories from fat; the balance from carbs and proteins. This might sound hard and even as a health hazard considering all the hypes associated with cholesterol.  However, once you know how your body works, you will realize that it isn’t a threat to your health and it’s manageable.

Some of the foods to avoid in a regular vegan ketogenic diet:

These are mostly the ones that contain a high level of carbs. Basically, they may include the following:

  • Grains: Wheat, corn, rice, beans,
  • Legumes: Lentils, black beans, peas,
  • Sugar: Honey, agave, maple syrup,
  • Fruits: Apples, bananas, oranges,
  • Tubers: Potato, yams, arrow roots and more

Eat a lot of the following foods:

  • Vegan “meats”: Tofu, Seitan, Tempeh and many more high protein “meats”.
  • Dark leafy greens like spinach and kales.
  • You can take all types of edible mushrooms: They are rich in vitamins.
  • High-fat vegan dairy products like coconut based cream and yogurt, vegan cheese are also good.
  • Nuts and seeds like sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds.
  • Avocados and berries.
  • Sea vegetables and fermented foods.

The human body needs energy to do the various activities. That energy can come from glucose or ketones. The preferred source of energy by the body is glucose, but the major drawback with this is that it cannot support the body for more than two hours of HIIT. Ketosis sets in after depletion of sugar; the body turns to fats and converts it into high energy molecules called ketones.

How to get enough fats on a vegan ketogenic diets

  • Consume and use coconut oils in your diets. These oils are rich in long and medium chain saturated fatty acids
  • Use olive oils for cooking and food flavor enhancer. However, ensure that you don’t expose it to more than 400 degrees Fahrenheit since it will easily oxidize
  • Use avocado oil since it is rich in monounsaturated fats and does not easily oxidize
  • Roast your nuts and seeds with red palm oil, it is rich in vitamins A and E
  • If you need an energy boost, add MCT oils to your foods since they contain medium chain fatty acids that don’t undergo digestion but rather go directly to the liver where they are converted into ketones

What happens when you take more calories than the body can use?

If you take excess calories, they will be converted into fats and glycogen. Thus, if at one time the body does not have enough calories, it will turn to these reserves for energy. However, after depletion of the banks and you don’t top up them by eating, the body will start to consume its muscles. This situation should not be allowed to happen under any situation. If you are confused by how much ketones and calories you require; use the calculators to get accurate figures.

Pros of vegan ketogenic diets:

  • They are rich in anti-inflammatory agents
  • Helps to keep blood sugar insulin levels under control
  • It is a good weight management diet
  • It is friendly to animal existence
  • Cancer prevention

Cons of vegan ketogenic diets

  • It is one of the most restrictive diets since it avoids most of the plant-based products.
  • There are limited selection choices in a restaurant since a majority of the people don’t practice keto
  • If not supplemented, there can be deficiencies of iron, zinc, and B12.
  • Plants store starch and sugar as energy whereas animals stores these as fats
  • The list of plants products with high fat, moderate protein, and low carbs is highly restricted
  • It might not be the best diet for people with Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s, type 1 and 2 diabetes as well as obesity

Therapeutic considerations if you are on vegan ketogenic diets:

Plant-based diets are healthy, but this does not mean they should be taken without caution. In fact, people with special conditions are sensitive to certain chemicals and also have sensitive digestive systems. If either of the above is the case, cereals should be soaked overnight to reduce the concentration of phytic acid. Those with a sensitive digestive system should use powdered or ground plant products like nuts and other types of flours.

Are you bold about your choice for a vegan ketogenic diet?

Vegan ketogenic diets are not very popular. Some people will even take water in a restaurant for fear of disclosing that they are on a vegan ketogenic diet. Majority of your friends might think it’s an unfounded choice, but you must enlighten them about the diet. Thus, tell them all about its health benefits, its impact on nature, how friendly it is to animals. Certainly, the cruelty which animals go through in the name of the food is pathetic.

In fact, all people would turn to vegan keto diets if they are truly concerned about future generations. These diets are important for brain health and they also combat some types of cancers. However, the diets are hard to follow and might not be the best on several occasions. For example, you might have to carry food while going out. In spite of all these, the challenges should not hinder you from continuing with a vegan ketogenic diet.

Namaste!

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