Saturday, March 29, 2014

Sweets by Sweet

I first discovered Sweet at one of the monthly vegan shop ups at Pine Box Rock Shop(a shop up inside an all vegan bar in Brooklyn where local vendors sell their items).  I think they were at several in the very beginning.  I remember liking them a lot.  Over the past year I've seen their cream sandwich cookies at health food stores that I frequent (Natural Frontier, Westerly & Commodities).

I was drawn to the gingerspice ones (all the variations come in a pack with either vanilla cream or chocolate cream) I've gotten the gingerspice vanilla cream sandwich cookies several times and always eat them quickly.  I love the texture of them, they are soft and chewy and have a slight gingery kick.

Very recently they came out with a brownie (which I got to sample at Westerly and instantly fell in love) and I also recently bought the mint mallomar to try.  Here's all the ones I decided to try:

the almond oat sandwich was disappointing.  I love the flavor of almond and felt you couldn't taste almond at all!

the mint mallomar was so good, it's like a healthier version of a peppermint patty, it was creamy and yummy.

the chocolate sandwich was good, but just too much chocolate for me, I probably wouldn't get it again.  Was very rich.

as I've mentioned before, the gingerspice vanilla is the one I've bought several times, the gingerspice chocolate did not disappoint, though I think I prefer the vanilla one.

Now the brownie...oh my...this reminded me of a certain brownie I used to eat often as a was AMAZING! I could not believe how good it was!!! Seriously. It was SO GOOD!! Definitely plan to buy it again very soon!

All of these items are raw, vegan, gluten free, no refined sugars, flours or oil. They are a bit pricey (cookies are $5 and change for a pack of 3, brownie is $5 & mallomar is $3 and change) but they are also all handmade.  The sandwich cookies come in packs of 3 and packs of 6. I stay away from the 6 pack as I always eat the 3 in a pack one after the other, so I know I'd do the same with the 6 pack!

For more info & for full products check out their website Sweet  (they also now have macaroons, truffles & more)

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Ch Ch Ch Chia!

Chia Seeds! I love chia seeds. For those who don't know, chia seeds are a superfood.  They have more calcium than a glass of milk, more omega 3's than salmon and more antioxidants than blueberries! You can add them to your smoothie, salad, cereal or anywhere really!

From the Health Warrior website they recommend having 2 tablespoons of chia seeds a day, by doing so you get:

"6000mg Omega-3′s (200% of the World Health Organization’s recommended daily amount)
40% of the daily recommended amount of fiber
More antioxidants (more than blueberries) than almost any other whole food
8 mg of iron (more than spinach)
350 mg of calcium (more than milk)
190 mg of magnesium (pounds and pounds of broccoli)"

About 2 years ago I discovered Chia Seed Acai Berry Bars at a nearby health food store.  I liked them so much that I had the store order me a case of them. Don't worry, I didn't eat them all in a day! :) They're such a great healthy little snack consisting of only 100 calories, and 5g of sugar.

Over the past few months I've noticed more and more flavors come out so I decided to buy them all to try them.

All of them have 100 calories, except for the coconut which has 110.  Half have 4g of sugar and half have 5g.  All have 3g of protein, other than the Chocolate Peanut Butter which has 4g.

Coffee-This flavor tastes just like actual unsweetened coffee.  I like coffee ice cream, but I'm not a fan of actual coffee so I wasn't a fan.

Chocolate Peanut Butter-I usually love anything that's chocolate peanut butter but, this, I was disappointed in. Just didn't really have a choc pb taste to me.  Maybe there wasn't enough peanut butter? Not sure really but wasn't a fan.

Apple Cinnamon-This one smelled good! As soon as I opened it, I noticed how good it smelled, but sadly I wasn't a fan of this one either.  I couldn't taste the cinnamon, it just tasted like apple to me.

Banana Nut-This one is AMAZING! It tastes just like banana nut bread! It is SO good!!

Coconut-Tasted just like coconut,  very tasty

& as I stated before the Acai Berry is great. My dad said it tasted like raspberry to him.

While, I didn't love many of the flavors, the ones I do, I really loved. I recommend trying them, especially because they are healthy and not too sweet! I love the texture, and yes they can sometimes get stuck in your teeth, but they easily come out.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Soltero Bowl from Champs

For those who don't know, Champs is a cute little vegan diner in Brooklyn, NY.   The menu ranges from tempeh wings to sandwiches to salads and more and has a large breakfast menu served anytime.  The menu is large and I like that it's so varied. My favorite thing at Champs is probably the soltero bowl.  It comes with kale, quinoa, peppers, onions, field roast, mushrooms and home fries.  I got it without the mushrooms (not a mushroom fan) and without the home fries (I try to avoid eating potatoes other than sweet potatoes). BUT I did get avocado added! (& wasn't charged for it).

The portion size is considerably smaller without the fries..I guess the fries are the filler! but it is SO tasty and flavorful! I just wished the size was double what I got. I was still hungry so I ordered the granola which came with yogurt and berries and that was super yummy (forgot to take a photo).  Here's a photo of the soltero bowl which I definitely recommend.  The field roast sausage gives it a slight kick.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Quinoa Burgers

Originally I was going to just post a review of one quinoa burger I recently got into, but then I saw another quinoa burger in Westerly (health food store) that I had never seen so decided to buy it to give it a try & to compare.

I have recently gotten into these sweet potato quinoa chia burgers.  They are tasty and healthy! I am not too familiar with vegan burgers in general since I used to not like them, but my parents also tried these and they said in comparison to other burgers, the texture was very soft.  I like these a lot, my only problem is when I buy them I wind up eating all 4 in one seating, they're light though, so it doesn't feel like a lot/doesn't make you feel like you ate too much, but health wise eating 4 is quite high in sodium, making it 1,120mg of sodium in one meal! That's pretty bad..The American Heart Association recommends that people don't exceed 1,500mg of sodium a day (& cutting sodium to 1,200 mg per day is even further recommended to avoid health issues later in life).  Other than that they are quite healthy, though high in carbs (if you eat 4!) so I'd advise not being like me and only eating 2 at a meal!  They are quick and easy to make and to me they are tasty and I just eat them plain! (with veggies on the side)

I then saw this product a few days ago and decided to give it a try.  I checked the directions on how to make them and it said to put them in a toaster! That was definitely a first.  They are already cooked, so they recommend putting it through the toaster a few times (you can also use the toaster oven or oven but the first recommendation was a toaster)  Very unexpected. After about 5 minutes, maybe even slightly more, they popped out and were already browning and felt crisp, so they definitely didn't need to be put in a second time.   Now I know why this brand is called Qrunch,  this burger was definitely very crunchy!! I like crunchy things so I was a fan of the texture. (Definitely the opposite texture of the Sol Burger) There wasn't much flavor though.  I wound up eating it with tahini sauce.  I'll eat the other 2 but won't buy this one again, but they do have other flavors (spicy italian, green chile and a curry one) that I plan to try to see if the others have more flavor. These are also definitely heavier than the others, I definitely couldn't have eaten all 4 at one meal! These are sugar free and have more than 100mg less of sodium than the Sol burger, but they have more fat.

Here's a nutritional comparison (Sol Cuisine on the left & Qrunch on the right)

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

So delicious Plain Coconut Milk Greek Yogurt

The first product I want to review is So Delicious Greek Yogurt Cultured Coconut Milk.  I never liked yogurt growing up, and I never even had greek yogurt in my life.  I've been wanting to up my probiotics and thought it'd be easy to do that with yogurt.  The various So Delicious yogurts comes in various flavors and with those flavors comes a lot of sugar, which I'm trying to avoid.  The plain greek style almond milk and the the plain greek style coconut milk both have 7g of sugar which is less than the flavors (which have 10g and above, the raspberry has 20g! yikes).  I tried the almond milk greek plain yogurt last week and thought it was disgusting.  I decided to try the plain coconut one, and I actually liked it a lot! The texture reminded me of pudding.  It's smooth, thick and creamy. I thought it was tasty, but I decided to add some blueberries which definitely made it even better.

Now, unfortunately whereas regular dairy greek yogurt has about 12g of protein (hence why all the fitness people recommend it), this unfortunately has a measly 2g of protein! so sad.

Good points other than this being a probiotic is that it also has B12 and Vitamin D2! Also has 9g of fiber. I'll definitely keep this in my rotation of healthy snacks to have.

Can someone out there make a vegan yogurt that's low in sugar and has lots of protein?  It'd be such a perfect after workout snack!

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Hi guys! This is my first blog.  I had a livejournal for many years and I've missed writing but have never gotten around to starting a blog until now.

My name's Ariela. I've lived in New York City my whole life.  I love traveling. I've been vegan for 15 years.  I love food. Have recently gotten more into health. I love working out (I started doing Kettlebell Kickboxing in March of 2013 and have been going regularly since July 2013).  I love movies. Photography.  I love board games. Love my friends and meeting new people..wait. This is starting to sound like a dating site..

Anyways. I thought it'd be fun to document new products I try, restaurants I go to and food I find in other cities and countries and maybe some other things from time to time that aren't food here goes nothing!