Today we aren’t really sharing a specific recipe, but we are pointing out that eating vegan can be really easy and still healthy. There are days where you want to create gourmet meals and other days where you just want something easy to throw together. Avocado sandwiches, fit the latter.
Besides acting as a natural moisturizer, avocados are associated with anti-aging due to xanthophyll, an antioxidant and carotenoid with DNA damage protection. Avocados are also a primary source of vitamin E, which stimulates collagen production and benefits skin elasticity. Despite our diligence in applying sunscreen during the sunny summer months, it is about time to start thinking about repairing our skin and prepping it for the colder, drier season we are about to embark upon.
8 REASONS TO EAT MORE AVOCADOS
High in omega-3.
Avocados are rich in omega-3 fatty acids and while they also contain omega-6 fats.
Rich in oleic acid.
This is another fatty acid:omega-9 that is good for memory and brain activity.
Part of the Environmental Working Group or EWG“Clean Fifteen.”
Only 1 percent of avocados tested had any pesticide residue, which means you can purchase avocados without fear of pesticide residue on your food.
Good fats lower bad cholesterol.
The fats in avocados can also lower bad cholesterol rates.
High in nutrients
They contain 20 vitamins and minerals including potassium, lutein, folate, and vitamins B, C and E.
Full of fiber.
Avocados contain both soluble and insoluble fiber.
Low in sugar.
They contain only 0.2 grams of sugar…lower than most fruits.
Loaded with antioxidants and phytonutrients.
Avocados are also rich in phytonutrients and may prevent disease and keep your body functioning properly.
AVOCADO CUCUMBER SANDWICH
4 slices of rye bread (or bread of choice)
Daiya Cream Cheese with onion and chives
1/2 of a large cucumber, peeled and sliced
½-1 avocado, peeled, pitted, and sliced
Squeeze of fresh lemon juice
½ cup sprouts (we used broccoli sprouts)
Salt and black pepper, to taste
Spread herbed vegan cream cheese on the rye bread. Then, layer cucumbers, avocado, and broccoli sprouts.. Season sandwich with a squeeze of lemon and salt and pepper.
AVOCADO & TOMATO SANDWICH
4 slices of rye bread (or bread of choice)
½ – 1 avocado
Slice the tomato and avocado. Spread the Tomato pesto on the rye bread then place on the sliced tomato and sliced avocado. Then take another piece of rye bread and spread on some more pesto.
I’m not sure about you, but as moms trying to raise healthy kids, we are always looking for recipes that curb that sweet tooth, but remain somewhat healthy too. We’ve made chia puddings before, but for some, the texture of the chia wasn’t appealing. In this recipe, the chia seeds are blended with the avocado and the texture is nice and smooth, and more like a mousse! This Chocolate Avocado Mousse totally hits the spot and is even a hit with our kids. We posted a similar recipe a couple of years ago, but this new version is even better!
Once you try it, you might think that it seems too decadent because it tastes amazing! However, it’s packed with protein, healthy fats, anti-oxidants, and fiber. So don’t worry…just enjoy! Oh, and one more thing…it’s really easy to make even on short notice!
Chocolate Avocado Mousse
2 cups Ingredients:
12 oz plant or nut based of choice (we used organic almond milk)
1/4 cup organic chia seeds
1 small avocado
1/4 cup maple syrup (we used grade B)
3 Tablespoons unsweetened cacao powder
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Add all ingredients to your blender and blend on the highest speed until smooth.
Pour into 1 large container or 4 small 4-oz containers and store in refrigerator for 1-3 hours or until thick and creamy like mousse. You can also put it into the freezer for 1-2 hours and it’s more ice cream like.
Eat alone or top with some fruit, vegan whipped cream, oreos, or nut butter. It’s up to you!
You can add any toppings to the mousse. We added fruit, cacao nibs, nut butter (peanut butter is really yummy), and vegan marshmallows (you can buy these at Trader Joes).
We are always on the lookout for a tasty, lunch that is vegan and high in protein and fiber. These Chickpea Avocado Lettuce Wraps from shelikesfood.com were perfect and yummy too! They had a slight tart flavor and the avocado helped everything stick together well. It’s easy to make and the filling can also be used as a sandwich with bread or on rice cakes. It travels well, without getting soggy, and makes a great lunch for a picnic too!
Health benefits of chickpeas: Chickpeas, like other legumes, have always been touted for their high fiber content. However, there has been research indicating that fiber from chickpeas had better health benefits than other sources of dietary fiber, including better blood fat regulation, specifically showing lower levels of LDL-cholesterol, total cholesterol, and triglycerides. Chickpeas contain about 12.5 grams of fiber per cup, which is 50% of the Daily Value!
Chickpea Avocado Lettuce Wraps
We didn’t have jalapeños and we added tomatoes, but we will definitely try this with jalapeños next time!
1 large avocado, removed from skin and diced
Juice of 1 lime
1 (15 ounce) can of chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cumin
2 tablespoons chopped onion, white or red
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro leaves
Diced jalapeno, to taste
6-8 lettuce cups
Add the avocado and lime juice to a medium sized bowl and smash with a fork. Next add the remaining ingredients, lettuce cups excluded, and mash again until desired texture is reached. Mix with a spoon to make sure everything is evenly incorporated.
Fill each lettuce cup with about 2/3 cup of the chickpea mixture, or fill with desired amount.
This creamy green popsicle is packed with healthy ingredients to keep the skin hydrated, smooth, and beautiful.
The best foods for the skin are high in water content to keep the skin hydrated, and high in antioxidants and vitamins to bring the best out of your skin. Let’s take a closer look at the ingredients in this creamy green popsicle.
Avocados are a certified super food, containing essential fatty acids, antioxidants, and amino acids. They are known to increase the absorption of important nutrients such as beta-carotene, alpha-carotene, and lutein. The D-manno-heptulose sugar found in avocados helps improve the production of collagen, which is crucial to keeping the skin healthy and young.
Coconut water is packed with fluids and electrolytes that not only keep you hydrated, but your skin as well. Hydrated skin is healthy, glowing skin.
Lime, like all citrus fruits are know for their beneficial effects on the skin. Lime helps rejuvenate your skin and protects it from infections, thanks to its antioxidant, disinfectant and antibiotic properties.
Kiwi is jam-packed with tiny, black seeds that contain the high levels of vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant, that is responsible for improving the moisture and elasticity of skin.
Creamy Green Popsicles
Juice of 1-2 limes
Bee Free Honey to sweeten as desired.
Peel and dice avocados and banana.
Juice 2 limes. (use less if you don’t like tart flavors)
Blend avocados, banana and lime juice in a blender until smooth.
Add 8+ ounces of Coconut Water (or until consistency desired) and blend.
To sweeten add Bee Free Honey to preferred sweetness. (optional) and blend.
Peel and slice kiwi into thin round pieces.
Add a slice or two of kiwi to the popsicle mold. Pour or spoon mixture into molds leaving almost a ¼ inch from the top. As it freezes, the mixture will expand. If using wooden popsicle sticks soak them in luke warm water before setting them in the popsicle molds.
Freeze: Approximately 6 hours.
Ready to eat: Run popsicle mold under luke warm water to release the popsicle from the mold.
Winter in California means Citrus! Oranges and grapefruits are everywhere and there are so many varieties to try. Oranges may seem like a boring and all too familiar fruit. However, this super-fruit should not be overlooked! This week we bought some gorgeous blood red oranges that we wanted to incorporate into one of our recipes. Our goal this January is to reset our bodies and eat a plant based diet. Our recipe contributor, Katelyn, found this winter salad recipe from pinchofyum.com that is packed with anti-oxidants and was easy to Veganize. We were so happy with the result! The tofu was a perfect substitute for the chicken and the mint really balanced out the tanginess of the oranges. Not only is this salad healthy and delicious, it is also a beautiful!
Health Benefits of Oranges:
Oranges are a good source of Vitamin C & A, Folate, and Potassium. They help to alkalize the body and stimulate the digestive system, thereby helping to relieve constipation. The high levels of Vitamin C is well know to help to boost the immune system, but oranges also contain polyphenols, a type of anti-oxidant that helps to reduce inflammation and combat viruses and other bacteria. Oranges also help to fight cancer, prevent birth defects, maintain healthy bones and improve your mood.
For the Salad:
1 lb. Tofu (drained and sliced)
2 blood red oranges peeled and cut into pieces
1 avocado, cut into slices
½ cup pomegranate arils
2 cups spinach, torn or cut into small pieces
1 14-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 shallot, thinly sliced
a handful of chopped fresh herbs – we used mint
For the Tofu Marinade:
⅓ cup olive oil
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
juice of one half of a lemon
½ teaspoon salt
For the Dressing:
1-2 tablespoons champagne
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard, or other grainy mustard
Whisk marinade ingredients together. Place in a bowl with the tofu, cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes (while prepping other stuff).
Whisk the dressing ingredients together.
Heat the oil in a pan and warm the tofu.
Toss all other salad ingredients, including tofu, together with the dressing! Season with additional salt and pepper and maybe a drizzle of good olive oil.
Credits: Author: Jill Uechi // Recipe and Photography: Katelyn Guerrero