• city guides
  • On the Menu this Week

    October 18This week’s plant-based dishes from around NYC are not to be missed. Every week I think I eat pretty delicious food, but this week was a whole new level of deliciousness. Everything I’m sharing was so good. These are the kind of dishes that could turn any foodie into a vegan foodie. From dumplings to tacos to cookies…this was truly a week of good eats.

    dumplingsTo say I am obsessed with these spicy veggie dumplings from Northern Tiger would be an understatement. The dumplings are filled with fresh seasonal veggies and smothered in a spicy sauce that will leave your tastebuds very happy.

    Otto's TacosI finally made it to Otto’s Tacos for their infamous mushroom tacos. They’re made with deliciously marinated mushrooms, onions, cilantro and guacamole. Here it’s simplicity for the win. And each taco will only run you $3.00 a pop!

    vegan meatballsThis past week the people behind Thug Kitchen teamed up with The Meatball Shop to offer their customers vegan meatballs for one week only. I was lucky enough to try them out and they were great. While you can’t get the meatballs at The Meatball Shop anymore you can find the recipe in the Thug Kitchen Party Grub Cookbook.
    By ChloeIf you’re looking for a dairy-free hot chocolate now that the weather has cooled down, look no further than By Chloe. They serve up a special housemade hot cocoa that’s a combination of dark chocolate, peanut butter, almond milk and marshmallows.

    By ChloeFor all you egg lovers, this is the dish for you!! I have never been able to find a vegan food that could replace scrambled eggs, but By Chloe‘s weekend brunch menu has finally created it. It’s the early bird which is scrambled tofu that is seasoned to perfection and mixed with tomatoes, mushrooms and spinach. It tasted so much like scrambled eggs. It also comes with market greens, maple vegan sausage, 7-grain toast, avocado and hot sauce.

    Sun in BloomAnd the gluten-free, vegan chocolate chip cookie sandwiches from Sun in Bloom were the perfect treat to top off this week of good eats!





  • food
  • On the Menu this Week

    October 4, 2015Now that it has cooled down here in NYC (a lot!) I’m back in the kitchen cooking way more than I was this summer. One of the new things I’m into cooking right now is chickpea pasta! Similar to the concept of lentil pasta, which I’ve mentioned here on the blog before, it’s pasta that is made out of legumes instead of wheat. I’ve been using Detroit-made Banza chickpea pasta. It is high in protein, high in fiber, vegan and naturally gluten-free. It makes any pasta dish so much healthier than just regular pasta. Check out how I ate my chickpea pasta and what else was on the menu this week:

    I made this simple and nutritious dish using the Banza chickpea pasta. I simply sautéed onions and kale in a little bit of olive oil, then threw the cooked pasta in, and seasoned it all with salt and crushed red pepper flakes.

    banza I’ve also been enjoying it in a simple red sauce. It’s such an easy dinner and so much more nutritious than if that was traditional pasta.

    IMG_0313I recently had this avocado toast at a little cafe in Tribeca called Gotan. Normally it comes with feta but I asked them to make me a vegan version, which they were happy to do. Nowadays you can find avocado toast on the menu at so many restaurants, so it’s always a good option to look for on the menu if you’re at a not-so-veg-friendly restaurant.

    On the Menu this WeekYou already know that my favorite salad is the Chef Aimee salad from Sun in Bloom. Well, it used to be made to order but now they have them packaged and ready to go so if you’re downtown and in a hurry this is really a great place to pick up a healthy lunch.

    IMG_0314And last but not least if you’re craving cookies By Chloe serves delicious vegan old-fashioned chocolate chip cookies as well as a delicious gluten-free version too.



  • city guides
  • Best of Vegan: Our 7 Favorite Healthy Restaurants in NYC

    I’m excited to share that I’ve teamed up with Kim of @bestofvegan and @brusselsvegan to bring you a list of seven of the tastiest healthy restaurants in NYC. You know the famous Hippocrates quote, “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food?” Well these seven restaurants live that principle. The focus of their menus is on nourishing, health supportive, plant-based foods from the Earth. And want to know a beautiful theme I noticed along the way while visiting these restaurants? Not only do these restaurants want to provide their customers with healthy, nourishing food, but they aim to provide their customers with good energy too. They all, in one way or another, are focused on living a little kinder and a little gentler for our bodies, our souls, others and the planet. So, with good food and good energy in mind, here are our favorite healthy spots.

    Sun In Bloom

    Sun in BloomSun In Bloom, with a sit-down restaurant in Brooklyn and a to-go spot in Tribeca, offers a wide array of clean, organic, raw vegan foods. The restaurant is home to one of my very favorite salads, the chef aimee macro salad. It’s made with massaged kale, live sesame ginger dressing, roasted veggies, avocado, sauerkraut, wakame, seasoned pumpkin seeds and cayenne pepper. It is one of the healthiest, most filling and most delicious salads in the city. If you’re feeling more like breakfast the Brooklyn location serves up a delicious breakfast menu which features items like the earth cup made with sprouted buckwheat, sunflower seed butter, dates, raisins, fresh banana, seasonal fruit and housemade rice mylk. And in the mood for a sandwich? Try the shiitake “bacon” BLT. Even the most ardent meat lovers will enjoy this. And we can’t talk about Sun in Bloom without mentioning their heavenly raw vegan cheesecakes that allow you to indulge without ever feeling guilty. Plus, this is a great spot for anyone who follows a gluten free diet too. And in the winter the make-your-own miso bowl is the most satisfying, delicious, nourishing miso soup you’ll ever have.  460 Bergen St (Brooklyn) & 165 Church St (Tribeca) suninbloom.com

    Juice Press

    Juice PressIf you want healthy, organic raw foods and juices on the go, Juice Press is your place. With locations all over Manhattan and Brooklyn, Juice Press is a New York favorite for quick, healthy food. Juice Press’ moto is that they are 100% organic, 99% of the time. This is some of the purest, cleanest food in the city. Their head chef Daniel Ceballos is a culinary mastermind. I’ve been lucky enough to try some of his custom creations like delicious stuffed roasted peppers and beautiful raw, organic, dairy-free dragon fruit ice cream. But on a normal day some of my favorites to pick up at Juice Press are the OMG! green juice made with celery, cucumber, pear, grapefruit, kale and parsley, the mini glo citrus juice made with grapefruit, lemon and orange, the heaven on earth smoothie made with homemade almond milk, banana, dates, raw almond butter, brown rice protein powder, raw cacao and cinnamon, the rainforest smoothie made with young thai coconut water, pineapple, banana, coconut meat, lemon juice, raw agave, ginger meat, superfood powder and fresh mint, the raw falafel salad, the best raw oatmeal for breakfast, acai superfood bowls, and the hot soups in the winter. 20+ locations around NYCjuicepress.com

    Jungle Cafe 

    Jungle Cafe

    Head to this Brooklyn spot for an abundant offering of healthy food and good energy. This restaurant was created by members of the Golden Drum Meditation Center. The concept is that customers can come in and enjoy healthy, clean, nourishing foods in a genuine, peaceful environment. The menu itself was actually created by a naturopath…how cool is that? And while the restaurant does offer an a la carte menu, one of the highlights is the robust buffet offering many delicious, healthy plant-based foods. Everything at Jungle Cafe was created with intention, from the colorful murals on the walls to the tables made of repurposed wood from Hurricane Sandy. The restaurant also offers free music every Thursday and many community programs. Some of my favorite items from the buffet were the sauerkraut, sweet potatoes, kale salad and the not-to-be-missed, perfectly prepared plantains. 996 Manhattan Ave (Brooklyn) junglecafenyc.com

    Blossom on Carmine

    Blossom on Carmine

    Blossom on Carmine is a great place to visit when part of your party wants to eat healthy and the other part is craving comfort food. While being known for their vegan comfort food (which is really delicious), Blossom on Carmine also offers a wide variety of healthy dishes like the taco trio, made with roasted adobo-spiced mushrooms, corn tortillas, cabbage, guacamole, carrot/poblano escabeche and micro cilantro, the kale salad made with mashed avocado, scallions, bell peppers, pomegranate seeds and an almond ginger dressing, and the create-your-own-bowl where you can mix and match an assortment of healthy veggies and grains. The restaurant has a friendly, welcoming vibe with walls that open up to the outside in the summer. And Blossom on Carmine features beautiful photography by one of their very own servers, Timothy aka Mississippi Vegan. The restaurant serves lunch and dinner daily, plus brunch on the weekends. 41 Carmine St (West Village) blossomnyc.com

    Angelica Kitchen

    Angelica KitchenAngelica Kitchen is the oldest running plant-based restaurant in NYC. The restaurant has been around for almost 40 years and it supports an impressive number of local farmers. The focus at Angelica Kitchen is to provide healthy, nourishing, well-balanced foods. As owner Leslie describes it, the food is so fresh and so local that each morning when it comes off the trucks from the farms it is humming with goodness. Angelica’s daily soups are so fantastic that I even order them in the summer. Another favorite of mine is the avocado and kimchee salad made with seasonal greens, watercress, housemade kimchee, nori strips, extra virgin olive oil, avocado and radish slices. If you want to try a little bit of everything, the fiesta plate allows you to pick and choose an assortment of items from the menu. Some of my favorites for the fiesta plate are the walnut-lentil pâte, curried cashew spread and ruby kraut. Plus, one can always count on Angelica’s daily specials to be healthy and satisfying. The restaurant has been drawing in health conscious locals for decades and continues to attract new generations of health conscious people along the way. 300 E 12th St (East Village) angelicakitchen.com

    Little Choc Apothecary

    Little Choc ApothecaryStepping into the cute-as-can-be Little Choc you’ll instantly be welcomed by a laid back, cozy atmosphere and the smell of mouth-watering good crepes. NYC’s first all vegan crepe shop offers savory and sweet crepes that are creatively filled with healthy, satisfying ingredients, all sourced from local farms. And in addition to being vegan, all the crepes at Little Choc are gluten-free too. I’m a huge fan of the burrito crepe made with avocado, coconut bacon, black beans, homemade chipotle hot sauce plus homemade cashew cheese and the garden of eatin’ crepe made with apple, avocado, fresh kale, mint-basil pesto and lemon juice. The goal of Little Choc is to make healthy, cruelty-free, delicious food more readily available to an ever-growing community of conscious eaters, and anything-goes foodies alike. And they do just that! Little Choc is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. 141 Havemeyer St (Brooklyn) chocny.com


    QuintessenceQuintessence is one of the most peaceful, relaxing restaurants you’ll find in the city. From the quiet, calming spa music always playing in the background to the small, simple, minimalist space, this restaurant is here to fill your body with good food and your mind with peaceful energy. The raw vegan menu is served tapas style. Owner Mun transitioned to a tapas style menu with the intention of letting diners try as many dishes as desired, without becoming overly stuffed. Quintessence’s chia seed pudding is one of the best chia seed puddings I’ve ever had. It reminds me of rice pudding I used to eat as a child. The raw caesar salad also stands out as one of my favorite items on the menu. It is made with crisp romaine hearts, juicy tomatoes, crunchy cucumber, avocado, caramelized onions and their own pine nut miso caesar dressing. The restaurant serves lunch and dinner on weekdays and all day brunch on the weekends. This is a perfect place for a relaxing, quiet, healthy meal. 263 E 10th St (East Village) raw-q.com

    To see Kim’s take on what stands out at these seven healthy restaurants check out her version of this post, here. And because this big city has even more delicious places than we could possibly squeeze into this list, here are four of my other favorite restaurants that offer some of NYC’s healthiest dishes. They are:

    Souen // Macrobiotic, vegan restaurant. Souen serves one of the most delicious macro bowls in the city. Located in Union Square, Soho and the East Village. souen.net

    Peacefood Cafe // A vegan kitchen and bakery. While this is one of my favorites for comfort food and desserts, they also serve some raw foods and a delicious vegan caesar salad. Located in Greenwich Village and the Upper West Side. peacefoodcafe.com

    The Squeeze // Juice bar and healthy plant-based to-go spot. If you want to blur the lines of healthy food and comfort food, this restaurant serves an incredibly delicious, healthy take on vegan mac and cheese. Located in Soho, Gansevoort Market, Midtown West & Brooklyn. thesqueezejuice.com

    Beyond Sushi // 100% vegan sushi. The rolls are creative and filled with healthy plant-based ingredients. Located in Union Square, Chelsea Market and Midtown West. beyondsushinyc.com



  • city guides
  • On the Menu this Week

    On the Menu this Week 4I sat down to type a little intro here, but then I deleted it, because I realized the photos in this post speak for themselves…plant foods are really, truly stunningly beautiful. And, as I can attest, it is a wonderful, empowering feeling to fuel our bodies with lots of these gorgeous, natural foods. So without further ado, here’s another week of beautiful, natural, nourishing food from the earth!

    acaiI had this BEAUTIFUL lavender açaí bowl with bananas, blueberries, coconut milk and corn flakes from Dimes NYC, located in Chinatown. It was just as delicious as it was pretty.

    dimesI also enjoyed Dimes’ mango pitaya bowl with raspberries, banana, coconut, sunflower seeds, hemp seeds and mint. Dimes sure knows how to make a gorgeous breakfast bowl. And, these bowls could definitely be replicated at home.

    juice pressJuice Press makes this flavor packed avocado sandwich with sprouted grain bread, nori, garlic, cucumber, avocado, onions, mesclun, and tomatoes with a chipotle mayo that gives it a spicy kick. Veggie sandwiches definitely do not have to be boring!

    Rob's saladThis nutrient dense salad was made by my dad (the Salad King) with fresh veggies from my mom’s CSA box. The salad had baby kale, red leaf lettuce, spinach, radishes, carrots, green onions, bell peppers and cucumbers. We each had huge plates of it and it was raw, pure and filling.

    zumbroMy first stop when I visit Minnesota is always Zumbro Cafe. A favorite in my family for at least a decade. I had their black bean burger over a bed of greens and a side of their perfectly seasoned roasted potatoes.

    Pancakes-Sun in BloomWhile I was back in NYC I also had these gluten-free, vegan pancakes with vegan chocolate chips from Sun in Bloom in Brooklyn. So, so good. I don’t normally like pancakes that much but these are fabulous.

    People's PopsAnd I never pass up an opportunity to get my hands on People’s Pops all natural popsicles. I can’t remember exactly what flavor this one is, as they change almost daily, but they’re all handmade from delicious, ripe local fruit. YUM.