Brighten Your Day With Sun Milk!!

There’s a new milk in town, one you probably haven’t tried and it’s made from something you may not expect! Sunflower seeds! How cool is that!?! Introducing Sun Milk from Boulder Sun!! Destiny Pic2

Sun Milk was created by Jordan and Destiny who are both very passionate about good food that is sustainable and kind to ourselves, the animals and the environment. Both Destiny and Jordan have both been vegan for many years. Destiny has always had a passion for food and was introduced to healthy, all natural food about a decade ago, but into her early adult life and motherhood, binge watched some Netflix documentaries, witnessed food industry atrocities and knew she needed to make a change in her life for her and her daughter. She also realized that she wanted to help make changes to the food industry and bring food to the table that was not only good for you, but that actually tasted good and was cruelty free. “It’s also very evident that there is a growing movement in the collective realization that a plant-based lifestyle is really the best for all” she says “Boulder Sun wants to be a part of that movement”.

Bottle O Sunmilk

Sun Milk was created so that Destiny and Jordan could help do their part to improve the lives of animals, people and the environment.  They told me “Many people are over the world are suffering from major food allergies, and those numbers are just continuing to rise. Devastation to the environment is still happening and not all vegan food is harmless in that. We see places like California going through major droughts, bee colonies dying out at alarming rates. So we wanted to create a product that of course was first and foremost vegan, but next we knew we had a duty to create something that would be also be gentle on the earth. Sunflower seeds are not only allergy friendly but they are water conscious and sustainable. They are also packed full of nutrients that benefit many parts of the body. And let’s be honest, sunflower seeds are a bit of an American feel good past time. So not only did we create a product that was sustainable and cruelty free, but also… it’s just dang good and comforting”.

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The mission of Sun Milk is to help protect this beautiful planet we have been privileged enough to live on, but have been destroying. To help are fellow beings and allow them to live as peacefully as possible along side of us instead of under a knife. Also, to help make waves in the way people eat on an everyday basis and help turn around the health of this nation and stop diseases that are completely preventable and curable through food.


Sun Milk is made of just three simple, clean and nutritious ingredients. Non GMO Sunflower seeds, non GMO sunflower lecithin and filtered water.  Boulder Sun makes great tasting vegan food, in a sustainable and allergy friendly way. It’s all natural and does not use refined sugars.

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Sun Milk is great on grain free cereals like this one made with chia seeds, ground flax, walnuts and dried apricots

Some of the best ways to use sun milk include; just straight up, but you can also try it in coffee, baked goods, smoothies, cheeze sauce recipes, alfredo, gravy… “really we haven’t found anything that we DIDN’T like it with” says Jordan and Destiny.

Plans for the future of Sun Milk include expanding the line to feature more vegan, sustainable and insanely delicious products. There is a vegan alfredo sauce in the works next! Eeek! How exciting!! 🙂

SunMilk Seed Cereal

Sun Milk Cereal topped with fresh fruit!

“We think one of the major keys to when going dairy free is first an open mind. And the second is time.” Destiny and Jordan told me when I asked what tips they could share to help people ditch dairy “Give yourself time to really experiment with the alternatives. Don’t give up after just trying one kind/brand. Also understand that it does take time for your taste buds to change as well. When you are used to drinking/eating dairy, and heavily processed foods that are sweetened, high sodium and high fat, it WILL take time start to finally appreciate the way real food tastes.” Excellent advice! 🙂

Strawberry SunMilk

One of the many delicious recipes you can make! Strawberry Sun Milk!

Sun Milk is currently made in small, hand-made batches and they are constantly improving the recipe and our methods. They love to hear real, organic feedback. So, once someone tries Sun Milk or other Boulder Sun products… let them know what you think!

Golden SunMilk

Golden Sun Milk: add 1/4 teaspoon of each; turmeric, cinnamon, ginger, cardamom to 1 cup warm Sun Milk. Sweeten to taste with date or maple syrup. Mix all ingredients together well.

I also asked the founders about what the top movies or books they would recommend that inspired them to become vegan? “There are so many! But right now we feel the ones with the most impact are Cowspiracy, What the Health, Earthlings, Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead 1 & 2, Forks over Knives, Fed Up, and Food Inc and the books; The China Study, How not to Die”.

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You can buy Sunmilk at Nooch Vegan Market and soon you will be able to find it at Lucky’s Market in Denver as well!! Drop by to grab some!

Follow them on facebook or instagram and visit their website for more details!



The Sun Milk website:


Best One Yet – Delicious Vegan Ice Cream & Giveaway!!

I’m pleased to introduce you to Best One Yet, creator Helen and her delicious vegan ice cream!! Welcome to the Colorado vegan business scene, Helen!


A little about Helen….. she’s originally from New Jersey and has been a food enthusiast her whole life. When she decided to become a vegetarian in 2009, she was excited to learn new ways of making natural ingredients shine. And when she decided to go vegan, she learned some new cooking skills, how to work with certain ingredients and make food feel exciting and fun. She says “It’s not all kale, guys!” (But sometimes it is.)


Helen is also vegan. With food, there are three things she asks herself: “1. What is this food doing to me? 2. What’s it doing to the world around me? And 3. Can I live with those answers?” She think those answers will be wildly different for a lot of people. And she also thinks it’s important to note that being a vegetarian or a vegan doesn’t always mean you’re always making good choices. It’s not automatic. She always tell people who frown at vegan-ism, “Hey, Oreos are vegan!” “People just assume it’s always going to be bad or not taste good. They never expect it to be something so familiar. Not saying everyone should go out and eat Oreos, but you get the point!” What she loves about vegan food is its possibility. She loves how much it’s changing and becoming accessible and normal. “Plus anything to protect our animal friends!” She says.

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The creation of Best One Yet kinda happened by accident. Helen likes to tell people, it came to her, more than she went out looking for it. She was deep in an ice cream making phase in of her cooking adventures and working on recipe after recipe trying to perfect it all: the taste, the texture, the sweetness. “It was like a game at first, just trying to make the perfect decoy vegan ice cream (my goal was that people who enjoy regular ice cream wouldn’t know the difference).” And after she taste-tested a ton of recipes on her husband “he kept declaring them all the best one yet, which is where the name comes from, I started sharing them with friends and family and suddenly I  realized she was onto something.” The rest is history!


One of the most unique and exciting things about Best One Yet is that, in the warmer months, Helen sells her ice cream out of the Vegan Vespa!! The Vegan Vespa is scooter/sidecar born out of the fact that Helen could not find a tiny food truck and will be re-launching again this spring! She wanted to jumpstart an all-vegan ice cream truck, but the truck itself proved hard to find. So the scooter was originally Plan B, but now she don’t know why she didn’t go with that first: it’s cute, memorable, easier to manage, etc. This past summer, she brought the scooter to a number of special events, breweries, farmers’ markets and food truck spots. “It was great!” she says “She learned so, so much, all of which I’m bringing with me into 2018 to make season two even better.”

The best way to find out where she’ll be is to get out Best One Yet’s event calendar or to follow them on social media! (Links below) You can also sign up for emails here and learn about what events are coming up next.


So, what flavors of vegan ice cream does Best One Yet offer, you may ask? Helen has over 50 recipes ready to go, but when she’s on the scooter she always have the Core Four: Very Vegan Vanilla, Dark Chocolate, Rocky Mountain Road and It’s My Gluten-Free Birthday Cake (consistently our best seller since opening day!). She also usually add 2-3 other flavors to that list when I’m out and about, like GF Cookie Dough Dream or Banana Chocolate Chip. And she also has seasonal flavors, all year round! Like: Strawberry Jam, Colorado Peach, Pumpkin Maple Pecan and Candy Cane Crush. Best One Yet always strives to use organic ingredients whenever possible too. She uses organic coconut milk as the base for all her recipes. All of our flavors are also gluten-free! Most of them are naturally so, but whenever I have a typically gluten ingredient like cake or cookies, I make a gluten free version.


So where can you buy Best One Yet?

In the “off-season” (late fall/winter): Lolita’s Market in Boulder and Nooch Vegan Market in Denver. In the “on season” (late spring/SUMMER/early fall): those shops, plus wherever the scooter is parked that day!


So in my mission to help animals and support vegan businesses both Helen and I would love it if you would get out there and enjoy some of Best One Yet’s delicious ice cream! And, if you like it, please tell someone else that you think will like it, too!

You can find Best One Yet online at:

And Best One Yet is giving away 3 pints (It’s My Gluten Free Birthday Cake, Gluten Free Cookies and Cream and Rocky Mountain Road (also gluten free!) of Ice Cream to a local winner (you must be able to pick up the pints at Nooch Vegan Market in Denver to enter). Enter here & Good Luck!

Use Food As A Force For Good – Eat No Evil Foods!

No Evil Foods is now in Colorado!! Yay!

No Evil Foods is a company based in North Carolina that makes plant-based meats which are so tasty and are in such high demand that they’ve recently expanded throughout the US and now to my home state of Colorado !!!


No Evil Foods (NEF) five gives you FIVE amazing plant-based / vegan meats options to choose from:

THE COMRADE CLUCK –  a Plant Meat similar to chicken that is lightly seasoned and excellent in a wide variety of dishes.

THE STALLION-  a traditional sausage (made from plants) with a proprietary blend of rosemary, sweet fennel, thyme and other organic spices.

EL ZAPATISTA – a bold, full-flavored chorizo with an intriguingly perfect blend of spices that will incite a feisty, fiery revolution in your mouth!

PIT BOSS-  a slow smoked BBQ done right: tender, juicy and damn delicious.   Pit Boss is in the house–redefi­ning a Southern tradition with every bite.

THE PARDON – Show your loved ones how delicious plant-based meats really can be during the holidays or eat THE PARDON every day, we won’t judge.


No Evil Foods Plant Meats are 100% plant-based and non-GMO. They harness the protein from beans, wheat berries and yeast and use organic herbs and spices to create flavor. And they do it with super simple ingredients too. They have all the taste and texture you want without any of the things you could live without. Their products are free from cholesterol, saturated fats, GMOs, antibiotics, hormones, soy protein isolates, nitrates and dairy. They are light on the environment and support ethical practices, too. Phew! It’s just damn delicious meat. Period.

They proudly proclaim ‘do no evil’ as their battle cry in the food revolution. Every bite supports their cause: to use food as a force for good. Small batch, sustainable simple and kind. The passion of a home cook, meets the spirit of a revolution. Protein for all!!


How do you cook them? All the Plant Meats are already fully cooked so they’re a snap to use at home. All you have to do is reheat & eat! Poor impulse control? Eat them right out of the package or they’re delicious pan-fried with some healthy fat for 3-5 minutes until warmed through and browned to your liking!

They are also good on pasta, on pizza, on a hoagie or any sandwich, in stir fries, soups, the options are truly endless!!! Get creative in your kitchen and impress your friends and family with the tasty dishes you come up with!

Chorizo_KheemaI spoke with Ryan, a rep from NEF about what he loved about NEF and he told me:

“I personally love many things about No Evil Foods. First and foremost, these Plant Meats are delicious. That is the most important thing. We want people to know that you don’t have to sacrifice flavor, experience, or nutrition to improve your diet in a way that will positively impact yourself, your community, your environment, your planet and its beings.” Pretty cool Ryan!!! We like that!NEF_Packs-6

Some future goals include growing the company in the all regions they currently exist. Rocky Mountains specifically 🙂 A longer term goal is to bring as much of No Evil Foods Plant Meats in as much variety as possible to meet the needs and wants of the ever changing cuisine landscape!

And finally my favorite thing about No Evil Foods is their support of animal charities – they do this through partnerships and donating a portion of their proceeds to support the work of many life saving shelters and sanctuaries.

NEF Logo

Right now, you can find No Evil Foods products at Whole Foods Markets along the Front Range – from Fort Collins south to Colorado Springs (and in more states too) as well as Nooch Denver! 🙂

But if you can’t find them in your community, you can order online on their website and have them shipped straight to you!! You won’t be dissapointed!



Main Street Vegan Academy Cookbook & Giveaway!

I have huge news to share!! I made it into a cookbook!


It’s such an honor to have contributed several recipes and vegan health and lifestyle tips to this beautiful book, along with some of my colleagues and graduates of the Main Street Vegan Academy.

In The Main Street Vegan Academy Cookbook, Victoria Moran along with JL Fields along with some 60 certified vegan lifestyle coaches, join you in the kitchen as you navigate more than 100 of their favorite plant- sourced recipes. Whether you’re a longtime vegan or vegetarian, or just veg-curious, their tips, tricks, shortcuts and strategies will transform your cooking, your eating and life.


Do you have questions about the health of soyfoods, need tips on to prepare quick healthy meals, how to eat out as a vegan or deal with social situations that can sometimes get, shall we say, uncomfortable? Well, we’ve provided you with hundreds of ways to feel empowered and resolute in your decision to become vegan.  Owning this book is like having a health or cooking coach right there along side you, rooting you on, helping you make the best choices for your health, animals and the planet!

The tips, tricks and lessons learned shared will also help make eating more healthfully simple and de-mystified for those who are starting out or just need the extra encouragement. This book is also very positive and encouraging. There is no judgement, just practical ways to help you incorporate more plant-based meals into your diet. By developing healthy and compassionate eating habits and eating more whole foods, the way you feel improves and it becomes so natural (and delicious too!), you just don’t want to eat any other way!

So, as an example of the delicious recipes included in the cookbook, here is my recipe for an easy, healthy caramel dip which is great served as a dip for fresh fruit. It’s also tons of fun to take to a holiday party (or any party!). Check out the fun little Christmas tree I made using fresh fruit!

Caramel Dipping Sauce from The Main Street Vegan Academy Cookbook


Recipe by Sarah Eastin, VLCE, Colorado

I love eating and cooking with dates. Dates provide many healing properties and are also a great healthy sweetener. Tahini is also a great way to sneak creaminess into dishes, as well as vitamins, minerals and healthy fats. This recipe is really delicious and is excellent as a dip but you could also add additional water to make it a sauce to drizzle over your favorite sweet treat or snack.

Yield: 2 servings

  • 10 medjool dates (soaked in warm water for at least 30 minutes, drained)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk
  • 1 tablespoon tahini
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt

Put all ingredients into a high speed blender and blend until smooth. Serve with sliced apples or your other favorite fruit.


Above is a little tease of another one of my recipes included! Gotta Love it Chocolate Pudding! A healthy alternative to traditional pudding –  this pudding is also full of antioxidants & healthy fats as well as super easy and amazingly delicious!

A few of the other delicious recipes you’ll find in The Main Street Vegan Academy Cookbook include:

  • PB&J Sammie Smoothie
  • Crazy Spicy Spanish Omelet
  • Buffalo Chickpea Dip
  • Rainbow Zucchini Rolls
  • Is It Chicken? Is It Tuna? It’s Jackfruit Salad!
  • Easy Cheesy Broccoli Soup
  • Brooklyn Barley Stew
  • Cranberry-Kale Pilaf
  • Arroz con No-Pollo
  • Crisp Mocha Peanut Butter Bars
  • Roasted Plums and Blueberries with Tangy Coconut Cream


And now for another sample of the delightful fare included in the cookbook… a delicious recipe for Veggie Mac! Mac & Cheese is always such a mainstay comfort food. But I’ve also heard that you should never eat traditional mac and cheese as it contains so many not-so-healthy ingredients that it is one of the most unhealthy things you can eat. For those of you that still love mac and cheese (me!) but are being a bit more careful about what you eat, this is an excellent alternative!

Veggie Mac from The Main Street Vegan Academy Cookbook


Recipe by Britt LoSacco, VLCE, New York

Serves 4 to 6

This vegan mac and cheese was inspired by a popular recipe from the online site of the iconic vegan magazine VegNews. My version honors the original by using vegetables as its base but is free of oil or dairy substitutes, achieving creamy deliciousness via nuts and seeds. This mac offers all the indulgent comfort you’d expect, but since it’s made from whole plant foods, you can feel extra good about going back for seconds.

  • 2 cups diced peeled russet or Yukon gold potatoes
  • 2/3 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup diced carrot
  • 2 cups water
  • 2/3 cup raw cashews
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 2 tablespoons tahini
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast flakes
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt, plus more for the pasta cooking water
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 pound vegan elbow macaroni

Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat for the pasta.

Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, combine the potatoes, onion, carrot, and water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, cover, and simmer over low heat for 15 minutes.

Combine the cashews, garlic, tahini, mustard, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, salt, and garlic powder in the jar of a highspeed blender or food processor. When the veggie mixture is finished cooking, add it (water included) to the blender. Place a towel over the blender and puree on high speed until completely smooth. (The sauce will be very thick, so have your tamper ready if using a Vitamix.)

Once the large pot of water has reached a rolling boil, throw in a fistful of salt and add the pasta. Cook according to the package instructions until al dente. Drain the pasta and return it to the large pot. Pour in the sauce and stir to combine.

Nut-Free Option: Substitute 2/3 cup soaked raw sunflower seeds for the cashews.

Gluten-Free Option: Use gluten-free pasta.

Main Street Vegan Book!

The Main Street Vegan Academy Cookbook is more than a cookbook; it’s a complete guide to going vegan, from FAQs, troubleshooting, and menu plans to inspirations and innovations for navigating the culinary, nutritional, and social landscape of compassionate cuisine!

You can purchase the book from Amazon or, if you are in the Colorado area, keep an eye out for some of my upcoming events or classes and you can buy it from me there (or send me an email and I will get one sent out to you).

Hope you enjoy our beautiful little cookbook and have fun becoming an expert in your kitchen!  As always. please let me know how I can help you! 🙂

Enter here for your chance to win a copy:


Bliss Bites!

I have a fun little product to tell you all about today!! I’ve recently discovered the most delightfully tasty little treat! Bliss Bites!™ Bliss Bites are mini-cupcake sized artisan treats that are delicious AND nutritious and come in six flavors;  Caramel Pecan Turtle, German Chocolate Haystack, Dark Chocolate Coconut, Orange Lavendar, Mint Chocolate & Peanut Butter Cup!

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Bliss Bites!™ are vegan, raw, organic, gluten free, but not free of flavor or any of the good stuff. They are packed with healthy fats and superfood ingredients like cacao, coconut oil, goji berries and hemp hearts.

bliss bites & me

Sarah is excited to eat her Bliss Bites!


Bliss Bites!™ were created after the Trulee™ founder, Sherry Lee White, overcame her debilitating auto-immune disease through clean eating and positive lifestyle changes. In order to improve her health she changed her diet and discovered just how fun and tasty eating health can be!! By pairing the nutritional power of superfoods with pure, simple and flavorful ingredients, she created Bliss Bites!™

bliss bites2Eating superfoods like goji berries, coconut oil, cacao and hemp hearts can provide an abundance of benefits including; anti-aging, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, they support the cardiovascular, neurologic and immune system, they  regulate hormones, helps balance blood sugar, increase brainpower, and reduce threat of heart disease and stroke.  And these are just some of the many benefits! As Sherry, the founder of Trulee™ discovered when she incorporated more of these more whole, nutrient dense foods into her diet and started eating a less processed, Standard American Diet, her body responded in a positive way and started to heal itself. I’ve seen this happen to so many people too, their bodies recover from multiple conditions and feel great after eating whole foods that not just healthy, they’re delicious too! So eat superfood powerhouses in any form that you can as often as you can. Bliss bites are a great way to do that 🙂


Bliss Bites!™ really do taste quite blissful and you can really tell that lots of love and thought goes into preparing each tasty little bite. My favorite was the Mint Chocolate but my friend Goldberry enjoyed the Peanut Butter Cup the most. They were all quite delicious and each had their own unique flavor and nutrition profile.bliss bites4Bliss Bites!™ are made in Texas but can be shipped any where in the US and come with this super cool little cooler! If you are in Texas you can also find them at HEB, Central Market, and Market Street.


Goldberry is excited that our Trulee package arrived!


A very special thanks to Bliss Bites for letting us try these delicious little treats! They are the perfect snack and would be excellent to give as a gift for your loved ones or a gift to yourself!!


And the great folks at Bliss Bites!™ are giving us 10% off all purchases, just use the code heal10.

You can find all their great products and order from their website:



Surviving Winter in Mountains, the Compassionate Way

When you think of Colorado or mountain towns, fashion may not be the first thing that comes to mind. Recently however, some super fun vegan businesses have sprouted, rooted in the mountains, doing great things in our community and beyond. I find it quite exciting, in fact, to be part of a community that has an up and coming vegan scene and is getting people to think not just about their food choices but also what impact what they wear has on animals and the environment.

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Fun shirts available from The Compassionate Closet

I’ve lived in the mountains all my life and, while, in the past, stylish cute apparel has been a bit hard to find, things are getting much better and I believe that we make the best of what clothes can find. Mountain lifestyles are very active so comfy clothes like yoga pants, sandals, and t shirts are some of the most common things you’ll find on the streets and trails in the summer but, in the winter, we need a little extra planning and warmth. As some readers know, finding ethical products to keep you warm in the winter can be a bit challenging. Many boots are made with leather, jackets are made with down and hats and socks made with wool. It’s taken me a long time to find products that align with my values. My hope is that some of the info below will help you!

The Compassionate Closet 5

Warm socks available from The Compassionate Closet

My tips for preparing for cold winter month include; wearing layers (long underwear has been a lifesaver for me many times), always being prepared for a variety of conditions with fun, warm accessories; gloves, warm hats, a nice scarf, warm socks, comfy footwear and wearing bright colors to keep from experiencing winter blues. Also, do your shopping at some of our great Colorado local or online retailers!

Some of my favorite places to grab vegan winter clothing, if you are in Denver, include:

True Love Shoes and Accessories:


And for online shopping you can find some great ecofriendly, Colorado vegan finds and beyond at:

The Compassionate Closet


The North Face and Patagonia are also great sources for jackets for skiing, snowboarding or other adventures. Look for products that contain Primaloft®, which a synthetic insulator, ThermoBall™ or other products made with synthetic fibers.

Hiking boots and outdoor recreation gear can be a bit tough to find, a good online source is Vegan Outdoor Adventures, they have all sorts of great product information and reviews for those of us who love to adventure:

I’ve also even found some good, budget friendly and good looking vegan accessories, clothes and shoes at Target!

When it comes to a beauty routine be sure to wash your face often with natural products and moisturize your face and neck as well as apply a non-toxic, vegan sunscreen. My favorite places to find the best include natural grocery stores! This way you can test out which products are the best fit for you.

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Fun accessories available from The Compassionate Closet!

I also very much enjoy wearing lots of cool hats to protect me from the sun in both the winter and summer! And don’t forget your sunglasses!

Many of retailers listed above and the designers they carry have found an alternative to the use of animal products and provide sustainable and environmentally conscious clothing. Many jackets, shoes and other accessories are made hemp, recycled and sustainable fibers, even bamboo. Purchasing these products is also such a great way we can close the loop on recycling and love our environment too!

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Just a few of the beautiful shoes you can buy from The Compassionate Closet

In your search to find compassionate winter clothing, always be sure to read the labels before purchasing and ask the retailer about the items that the products contain. This also sends a signal that the demand is there for high quality, cruelty free products!

And finally, for a comprehensive list of cruelty free clothing, check out Peta’s Shopping Guide to Compassionate Clothing! Have a wonderful winter!

The Compassionate Closet Shirt

The Compassionate Closet donates a portion of its sales to help rescued animals like this! All photos have been provided by The Compassionate Closet.


And as a special bonus our friends at The Compassionate Closet are offering a 20% discount on all orders!! Use the code: SHOPVEGAN

Denver Vegan Holiday Market

If you’re in the Denver area on December 9th please join us for our 4th Annual Vegan Holiday Pop Up Market! At this great event you will find compassionate gifts to purchase for everyone on your holiday list, delicious food, chef demos and more!!


The list of vendors includes:

  • Ranger’s Bakery – Vegan Dog Treats
  • Azteca Foods – Vegan Tamales
  • Heal Grow Blossom – Vegan Food Gifts
  • Poofy Organics – Vegan Body Care and Home Products
  • Vegan’s Eat What – Books and more
  • NOOCH Vegan Market
  • The Compassionate Closet
  • Let Thy Food
  • Missy J’s
  • Love is Vegan
  • Healthy Holidays talk by Sarah Eastin, Vegan Coach & Chef
  • Cooking demos by: The Doctor & The Chef and Caitlyn Boyer – Personal Chef
  • Food available for purchase: Wanderculinarilust

This event is always lots of fun and getting bigger each year. Hope you can join us, it’s a great way to  support local small businesses and our great vegan community too!






20 Ways to Love Yourself (and Animals) Through the Holidays and beyond

It can take a little work to eat healthy every single day; everyone slips ups here and there, can’t resist or over indulges in their favorite treat. Eating occasional treats and small indulgences aren’t the end of the world, but getting stuck in an unhealthy eating pattern and eating meals you know aren’t good for you for long, can damage to your health in many ways. I’ve struggled with staying on track, especially around the holidays, when we’re so busy and have endless obligations. I thought now would be the perfect time to write this post; to give both you and me a gentle reminder! The following are some of my favorite ways to stay healthy and help animals during the holiday season and beyond.

That's me!

This is me staying healthy year round with my rescued pup!


  1. Keep an abundant supply of healthy snacks available to help avoid temptations to indulge in sugary and other unhealthy snacks. Nuts and seeds in moderation, raw vegetables and fresh fruits are good snack choices.
  2. If you attend a holiday potluck, take a healthy dish to eat and share with others. If you are going to a restaurant or attending a holiday function where you know your options will be limited, eat something before you go to satisfy your appetite.

    IMAGE 2- A healthy vegan plate

    A healthy vegan holiday dinner

  3. Take time to research and select healthy vegan recipes to prepare over the holidays. Try to focus the bulk of meals on vegetables, fruits and legumes. A great source for tested holiday recipes is the Vegan’s Eat What Blog. 
  4. Get creative with raw recipes. One of my favorite sources for raw holiday recipes is Fully Raw Kristina

    IMAGE 1- Cranberry Relish from Fully Raw Kristina

    Delicious Cranberry Sauce from Fully Raw Kristina

  5. Eat raw garlic to prevent getting sick. It may seem strange, but raw garlic is one of my best home remedies for staying cold free. I’ve heard that we should eat at least 1 raw clove of garlic a day to prevent illness!
  6. Take it easy on the alcohol. Instead of selecting alcoholic beverages at parties and office functions, opt for mocktails, apple cider, kombucha, herbal teas, or fruit/herb infused water. Try this Sparkling Cranberry Kombucha Mocktail for a fun, tasty drink, minus the hangover.

    IMAGE 3- Sparkling Cranberry Kombucha Mocktail

    Sparkling Cranberry Kombucha Mocktail

  7. Walk as much as you can to ensure 30 minutes of exercise per day. Walking with family, a friend, or the family dog is a fun way to meet daily exercise goals.
  8. Don’t forget the importance of deep breathing and practicing yoga or some sort of daily stretching. Practicing deep breathing techniques helps strengthen our respiratory system which is especially important as we age.
  9. Implement your favorite self-care strategies. Meditate, use aromatherapy, or indulge in a massage or other special spa treatment.
  10. Get lots of rest. Good sleep is essential to long term good health.
  11. Plan your holiday shopping to make it as stress free as possible. Online shopping is a huge timesaver and can help alleviate a great deal of the stress associated with traditional holiday shopping
  12. Be social. Spending time with good friends and loved ones is a great way to boost your immune system.
  13. Learn to say “No.” Holidays can seem overwhelming so focus on activities and events that make the best use of your time and bring the most joy to your life.
  14. Give the gift of homemade vegan foods. Homemade granola, spiced nuts, prepackaged soup mixes and spice blends are always appreciated and easy on almost any budget.
  15. Ask for and give gifts such as healthy cooking classes, vegan cookbooks, or a session with a Vegan Lifestyle Coach. Coaches help many people get healthy and stay healthy and could be just what you need to help you get through something you may be struggling with. In fact, this is a great time to pre-order the delightful Main Street Vegan Cookbook written by my Vegan Lifestyle Coach colleagues to share with your loved ones!
  16. Instead of buying or making gifts, donate to vegan advocacy and animal welfare organizations.

    IMAGE 5- My family of rescued pets

    My family and our rescued pups

  17. Save a life by serving a vegan turkey or ham alternative at your holiday meal celebrations. There are several good commercial brands currently available, or make your own animal-free holiday roast. One of the best main dishes I’ve made and served at holiday events is Lynn’s Meatloaf from the Engine 2 Diet.

    Barley, a calf discarded by the dairy industry rescued by Broken Shovels

    Barley, a calf discarded by the dairy industry rescued by Broken Shovels

  18. Adopt an animal in need and encourage others to do the same. Animal are great for improving your overall mood and well-being, and please remember always adopt and never shop for a companion or other animal.
  19. Sponsor a farm animal at a local farm sanctuary. One of my favorite new sanctuaries is the Broken Shovels Farm Sanctuary in Colorado where the amazing Andrea Davis rescues and cares for numerous neglected and abandoned animals. You can sponsor a farm animal at Broken Shovels and at most farm sanctuaries throughout the United States and abroad.
  20. And above all; stay positive, happy, and have fun at all your events. As happy, healthy, vegans we must lead by example and show people the great things being a vegan can do for them too!

Peaceful Rebel Vegan Cheese!!

I’m delighted to tell you today all about a Colorado based vegan cheese company! Peaceful Rebel Vegan Cheese is made by Malina Farias, in Denver CO, and is just absolutely delicious!! It’s also super versatile and provides great options for those looking for a non-dairy / vegan cheese substitute that sometimes can be hard to find (feta, queso fresco, mozzarella, gouda). Peaceful Rebel Vegan Cheeses can be used in a variety of dishes, and is so good served either warmed or cold. Check out a few dishes I made below using it! And try it for yourself! You won’t be disappointed!

Find Peaceful Rebel on Facebook!

Peaceful Rebel Cheeses!

When cooking with the cheese I found that it melts pretty well (cook it on a lowish heat and don’t overcook), it doesn’t melt quite the way dairy cheese does but is has a very cool texture and is super yummy. It’s great melted on pizza, sandwiches, quesadillas and in cheese sticks and sauces, test it and let us know what you use it in! Peaceful Rebel Vegan Cheese is also very good served as a topping or cold with crackers. Like I mentioned previously, Peaceful Rebel, is a Colorado based business and for now, only available at Nooch Vegan Market in Denver.  It’s worth the trip, however, just for the cheese, if you don’t live in Denver 🙂

Chedda cheese

A little about Malina and why she started Peace Rebel Vegan Cheese: “I struggle, as do most vegans, with the almost casual, certainly unconcerned attitude of the plight of our beautiful oceans, forests, and fellow creatures. Creating Peaceful Rebel Cheese is my small way of addressing these issues in a positive way. Plus, I missed cheese and could not find any that I liked but could afford.”


Gouda, sprinkled with a little paprika and served with crackers


Malina makes many kinds of cheese, including aged blue, American, aged parmesan and more. But she is focusing on and selling 6 for the time being: Cheddar, Smoked Gouda, Swiss, Queso Fresco, Herbed Feta, and Mozzarella.

Arugula tempeh bacon feta salad

Arugula, strawberry, tempeh bacon & Feta Salad


The 6 cheeses are made from non-GMO tofu, organic soy milk and coconut oil. All the added “flavors” are natural or organic – no fillers, artificial ingredients or preservatives. They are Gluten Free too, although the Swiss does have gluten-removed beer.

Peaceful Rebel Pizza

PIZZA! Made with mushrooms, spinach & Peaceful Rebel Mozzarella


You can use the cheeses in anything you’d use their dairy counterparts in. Queso Fresco is great in anything Mexican. Swiss is wonderful melted on a Reuben. Use Herbed Feta on Greek salads or pita sandwiches. Cheddar is just great on, well, everything.

watermelon blueberry feta mint salad

Watermelon, blueberry, mint, & Peaceful Rebel Feta Fruit Salad


Malina’s mission statement is simple: “We make hand-crafted non-dairy cheese with pure ingredients and amazing taste”.

mushroom spinach enchiladas

Spinach & mushroom enchiladas made with Peaceful Rebel Queso Fresco!


Like I mentioned previously, Peaceful Rebel is hand-made in Denver, CO. It is a small, woman-owned and operated local company. We love that! 🙂

Kale Pumpkin Cranberry Feta Salad

Kale, butternut squash, dried cranberry, tempeh bacon and Peaceful Rebel Feta Salad


Malina is so very grateful to live and work in this community, which is so supportive of her values as a vegan! And we are very thankful that she’s making such delicious vegan cheese! 🙂


Tostadas made with Peaceful Rebel Queso Fresco


For the time being Peaceful Rebel Cheeses are available at Nooch Vegan Market (Although Malina is working on bringing the cheeses to other cities and markets, you can  contact Malina via Facebook or the email below if you’d like to connect with her) and we are giving away a gift basket to one lucky local winner – you must be able to pick up the package from Nooch in Denver to enter! Please enter below and check out this super yummy fall inspired recipe for Vegan Calabacitas! It’s really delicious 🙂


Vegan Calabacitas made with Peaceful Rebel Queso Fresco


Vegan Calabacitas!

Serves 4 as a side dish

My wonderful mother cooked such delicious Mexican food and used to make me Calabacitas all the time. I’ve made this recipe for Calabacitas without cheese before and it just didn’t work. I was delighted when I found Peaceful Rebel and cooked make Calabacitas the way I remember them. The Queso Fresco is absolutely the perfect touch!


  • 1 medium sized yellow squash (cut into quarter)
  • 1 medium sized zucchini (cut into quarters)
  • 1 cup frozen or fresh sweet corn
  • 1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
  • 3.5 ounces or 1/2 package Peaceful Rebel Vegan Cheese Queso Fresco (you can add more, if desired)
  • 1 or 2 cloves finely chopped garlic
  • 1/4 cup chopped and cleaned roasted green chili
  • Water
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Prepare squash and zucchini by quartering it lengthwise and then chop into 1/4 chunks. Set aside.

Saute chopped onion, garlic (in a few tablespoons of water or oil, if you prefer) until onions just caramelize (turn brownish), then add chopped squash and zucchini and cook until they are about half done. Add corn and move to a 1 quart casserole dish, break up the cheese by hand into small pieces and mix it in along with green chili.

Bake uncovered for 35 minutes (don’t overcook).

Serve with beans and warm tortillas and your favorite condiments.


How to contact Malina if you’d like to special order her delicious cheese or request it at your store:

Here’s the link for the giveaway!! Good luck!







Looking for a beautiful vegan jacket this winter? Check out Hoodlab!

I recently stopped by the coolest pop up shop in downtown Denver. Cici Dunn owns and operates HoodLAB and distributes Hoodlamb jackets which are some of the most beautiful and elegant jackets I’ve ever seen. Not only does HoodLAB sell jackets, they also sell the coolest hats, caps, puffy earmuffs, scarves, mittens, t shirts and faux fur accessories. The best part about HoodLAB is that all the products are sustainable & ethical; made with hemp, recycled products, vegan and cruelty free. Hoodlamb jackets are some of the warmest you will find, are super high quality and last a really long time too!


Courtesy of HoodLamb CO. Photo by Kim Sidwell


HoodLamb CO aka HoodLAB is a family owned and operated HoodLamb Concept Store & World Agent for Amsterdam clothing label HoodLamb Hemp Tailors. They operate a  wholesale showroom and e-store They also work with companies that want to create branded sustainable merchandise for their crew and following.


Courtesy of HoodLamb CO. Photo by Kim Sidwell


HoodLAB’s signature clothing line, HoodLamb Hemp Tailors, contains design t-shirts, hoodies, furry hoodies, heavy-duty winter coats, knitwear and accessories’, all made from hemp, organic cotton and other recycled materials. Wonderful news for the conscious shopper is that HoodLamb since this season officially is PETA-approved!

HoodLamb Men's

Courtesy of HoodLamb CO. Photo by Kim Sidwell


HoodLAB also carries THTC (The Hemp Trading Company), THTC is multiple award-winning ethical and fair brand from London/UK with a broad range of organic t-shirts designs that will make you think.

Hoodlab Catalog Women's

Courtesy of HoodLamb


What does HoodLAB carry for winter? A full winter line! Hemp is extra warm! Developed in Amsterdam for the harsh winters, HoodLamb has always focused on functional utilitarian wear to protect against rain and cold. Since 2009 they also dress the Sea Shepherd crew on their campaigns around Antarctica and worldwide in the most extreme weather conditions. The Mens’ and Ladies’ jacket line contains key features such as 100% recycled insulation, thumbholes and oversized hoods for extra warmth, vegan faux-fur, hand-warmer pockets to name a few design details.

Hoodlab Catalog Men's

Courtesy of HoodLamb

HoodLAB operates a Colorado based E-store ( and also has a Rino District Showroom Store, anyone can make an appointment to come try on jackets and gear. Give them a call at 720-669-3369 if you’d like to visit to the Showroom.


Hoodlamb Sea Shepard

Courtesy of HoodLamb


Cici’s tips for surviving winter in the Mountains: “Colorado has many microclimates and we got 300 days of sun here so it can be deceivingly beautiful and things can change rapidly due to the mountain landscape. Make sure you have good gear to help you stay warm and comfortable. Dressing in layers is always a good idea.” And don’t forget to shop HoodLAB! 🙂

You can find HoodLAB at:

Hoodlamb Colorado

3049 Lawrence Street

Denver CO 80205 USA

PH: 720-669-3369

Please use the discount code on; ‘HL4LIFE’ which will give you 20% off all purchases!