Vegan Diet at my Local Grocery

As some of you may know, I went vegan a couple of months ago! So far it’s been really good. I want to do a whole post about it, but I want to wait & keep at it for longer because although I have seen some improvements, I really want to make sure I know what I’m doing & talking about!

This post is basically going to be my shopping list since I’ve gone vegan. I wanted to show you guys that it’s possible to have a certain “high-maintenance” diet without spending a ton of money. One of the main reasons I went vegan was to try & save money! But I think sometimes people think that when you eat vegan, you can only shop at places like Sprouts or Whole Foods or all those other specialty grocery stores. I love those stores, but they are sooo expensive! And that is totally not the point of eating vegan! So I’m going to give you guys a break down of what I buy at Safeway & some of my favorite vegan brands that can be found there.

PRODUCE – Vegetables & fruit are the basis of my diet. I literally eat a salad for at least one meal a day, if not two. I don’t eat organic, so that saves me money, but I try to stick to the veggies that I eat on a regular basis in my salads or with hummus. (I would eat hummus for breakfast, lunch & dinner if I could.) My go-to’s are: peppers, cucumbers, lettuce, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, carrots, & apples. I also get frozen broccoli. I’m allergic to a lot of fruit unfortunately, so I rely on vegetables for my fresh food. I might get seasonal fruit if it’s not too expensive though!

DAIRY – So I don’t actually eat any dairy because that was another main reason I went vegan. I love cheese, but it’s so expensive & just really not healthy, at least for me. I also hate milk, so almond milk is not a problem for me. I usually get unsweetened vanilla. I can’t drink coffee without creamer though & I was so worried I was going to have to give that up or spend a ton on an alternative, but luckily my favorite brand is already dairy free! Coffeemate is my go-to & I think they are all dairy free, but I can’t be sure of that! I just know my favorite flavors are. (Hazelnut & vanilla in case you were wondering…)

CANNED GOODS – Canned goods are so cheap, but they can have a lot of added sugar & salt, which brings down the health factor. I always buy beans for my protein, & I recently discovered that pinto beans are the best. I will usually get tomato sauce because spaghetti is another quick easy meal I love that doesn’t necessarily need meat to be good. I’ll get non-creamy dressing to avoid dairy, & then mustard for the hummus wraps I live off of. I’m also totally digging beets these days – I am Dwight Schrute.

GRAINS – I just recently discovered that my favorite bread has milk & eggs :/ so I switched to Thomas’s Everything bagels, which are just as good if not better! I also get tortillas to make wraps & stuff.

SNACKS – The most important meal of the day if you ask me haha. I always get popcorn, & nuts are also a healthy choice.

FAVORITE VEGAN BRANDS –  Okay, so ever since going vegan I love finding new brands that are dairy free & meatless. Gardein makes the best meatless meat haha. I recently tried their “chicken sliders” for the Super Bowl & they were so good. I’m always skeptical of stuff that isn’t “real” meat, but these aren’t even that bad. But they are expensive. I also already mentioned Coffeemate, but their creamer is the best. I also already talked about my fave bagels, but Thomas’s Everything bagels are basically everything to me.

This post is longer than I thought it would be, but I eat a lot, okay! I really want to do a grocery hall or a what I eat in a day, but I think those would be better as videos. I figure if I talk enough about making a YouTube channel & making videos, I’ll get the bravery to do it. Speak it into existence.

I hope you guys liked this post because it was so much fun to write! Grocery shopping is one of my favorite chores, as you guys can probably tell! If you eat vegan or even vegetarian, what are some of your favorite brands? Let me know in the comments or DM me on social media!

P.S. Oreos are vegan, so if you weren’t already convinced…

with love,

jazz

Better than Reese’s

I’m back this week with another recipe to share! I also found this one on Pinterest. I feel like at this point they should just sponsor me if that’s even a thing because I use Pinterest for pretty much everything in my life.

This recipe is literally heaven. They’re like super big, rich Reese’s & if you know me you know chocolate & peanut butter together are my weakness. They’re also super easy to make because I also don’t like anything really involved when it comes to the kitchen. When I’m hungry, I’m hungry.

Ingredients: 2 cups creamy peanut butter

3/4 cup salted butter (softened)

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

3 3/4 cup powdered sugar

2 packages (1 lb each) Chocolate Candy Coating

Prep time: 1 hour

Serves: 55(ish)

 

 

Mix the peanut butter, salted butter and vanilla together in a large bowl. Then add in

the powdered sugar, a little at a time. I know the recipe calls for a lot of powdered

sugar, but unfortunately, you’ll actually probably need all of it. I tried it with 2 cups &

then put it in the fridge to harden, but the dough wasn’t stiff enough so I ended up

using 3 cups & it was just right. Once you’ve added enough powdered sugar, make a

big ball of dough in the middle of the mixing bowl, cover & place it in the fridge to

harden for about 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, take out the ball of dough & make into

smaller balls & place on a wax paper lined baking sheet & then place in the refrigerator

again for another 15 minutes.

You will want to wait & make the chocolate as soon as you’re ready to cover the peanut

butter balls because the chocolate will harden quickly. I had to reheat mine multiple

times during the dipping process. I used actual chocolate candy coating, but I’m sure it

would work with melted chocolate chips too. So once you’re ready, melt the chocolate

in 15 second intervals in the microwave & stir it after every 15 seconds. Then take the

balls & place them on a fork & place into the bowl of chocolate. Cover fully & place

back on the baking sheet. Once they are all fully covered, place in the refrigerator to

harden.

P.S. I don’t know why the spacing is off in this post! :/ I think it has something to do with how I typed it…

What’s your favorite type of chocolate? I think you all know mine…

with love,

jazz

Pink Hot Chocolate

As you probably already guessed, this was a Pinterest idea 🙂 When I was home for Christmas I was looking for new things to try in the kitchen & this one actually turned out. It is super easy to make & aesthetically pleasing, which counts for a lot in my opinion. It would be perfect for Galentines day 😉

Ingredients: White chocolate hot cocoa mix

Red food coloring

Milk or water

Whip cream & sprinkles (optional)

Prep time: 5 min.

Serves: 1

In a mug, pour in 2 tablespoons of white hot cocoa mix. In a separate mug or bowl, heat up water or milk (depending on how creamy you want it) for about 2 1/2 minutes. Pour hot liquid into cocoa mix mug & stir. Put in about 2 drops or red food coloring to get the pink color. Finish off with whip cream & sprinkles.

I’m going to admit that it wasn’t as flavorful as regular hot chocolate, but it still tasted good & was super cute. If you can’t find white hot cocoa mix, you can make it from scratch following this recipe.

What is your go-to winter drink? Let me know in the comments or on social media!

xo,

jazz

Chocolate Powder Puff Cookies

I feel like the only thing I’ve done during break is bake… but I’m not complaining! With that being said, I have some new recipes to share with you guys.

I found this recipe on Pinterest (per usual) & it is super easy to make. I always pin these super fancy recipes, but when it comes down to it, I would rather just make cookies out of a box & not have to spend a ton on ingredients I’ll use maybe once. So for those of you who also have more motivation when you’re on the couch & not in the kitchen, this recipe is for you. It looks good & tastes good, but doesn’t require much.

Ingredients:  one sheet pie crust that makes a 9-inch pie, thawed

about 15 chocolate kisses

about 3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar, for dredging

Prep time: 45 minutes

Serves: 15

Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees. I always forget to do this & then my recipe is done, but I have to wait around for the oven, so I would suggest doing this first thing. Then spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.

On a floured surface, place the pie crust & roll it out. Using a pizza cutter, cut it into about 16 slices. (little triangles) Place a chocolate kiss in the center of each section. Then fold the pie crust over the kiss to cover it fully. Place all kisses on baking sheet & bake for 15 to 17 minutes, or until the crust is set. The bottoms may be a little brown, but that’s okay. Let them cool and then roll them in confectioners sugar. Eat right away or save for later!!

Easy Work/School Lunches

I know I just did a post about an easy school morning breakfast, so I decided to go along the same lines & give you guys some easy lunches you can pack for work or school!

Monday

  • Salad, hummus & crackers

Tuesday

  • Sandwich, fruit

Wednesday

  • Pasta salad, protein bar

Thursday

  • Wrap, homemade fries

Friday

  • Rice with grilled chicken &/or veggies

I usually just switch between all of these combos. I prep my lunch the night before so I can just run out the door. I also save a lot of money by not eating out all the time. Some weeks I have salad most days, others I’ll eat leftovers, but for the most part, this is what you can expect to see in my lunch bag!

What do you guys like to eat for lunch? Let me know in the comments or on social media! 

xo,

jazz

Quick & Easy Breakfast

Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day, hands down. I have a sweet tooth, so part of it could be I just love all the sweet options. But I love the classic eggs & bacon too. Basically, I try not to skip breakfast for multiple reasons; it’s also the most important meal of the day! If I don’t have a filling breakfast, I end up snacking way more than I should & choosing unhealthy options.

The only problem is, I usually don’t have a lot of time in the mornings to make a big, fancy breakfast. (Weekends are another story… brunch is my favorite part.) On days when I have class or somewhere I need to be, this is my favorite breakfast! I usually try to have a variety so I don’t get bored, but this combo is soooo good & filling & it’s literally 3 ingredients!

  • Wheat toast
  • Creamy peanut butter
  • Honey

It’s that simple! I’ll usually pair it with fruit or yogurt & granola. And always, always a cup of coffee. 😉

What is your favorite breakfast recipe! Let me know in the comments or DM me on social media! 

xo,

jazz

Grad Party Cupcakes

It is officially graduation season! I love this time of year because everyone is so nervous & excited about the future. But the best part of it all (along with getting a degree!) is the parties. My brother graduates this month so I’ve been busy planning a party for family & friends.

My signature party dish is cupcakes, so of course I had to go with a graduation theme. These are super easy to make & look almost too good to eat!

To make this adorable yet edible dessert, start with your favorite cake mix & make cupcakes. Choose either vanilla or chocolate frosting & then you can add sprinkles that represent school colors. To make the graduation caps, I followed a stencil outline & then cut them out & colored them in. It is time consuming, but they turned out great! Once the caps are cut & colored, use Scotch tape to adhere a toothpick to the back of the hat. Stick it in the decorated cupcake & you’re set!

If you don’t have a grad hat stencil, you can make a different version here.

Balsamic Strawberries & Cream Croissantwiches

This sweet recipe is perfect for brunch or an after dinner treat. I found this recipe while scrolling through Pinterest & decided to give it a try. It was super easy to make & turned out just like the picture I pinned, so that’s a good sign.

Ingredients: 6 croissants

1 cup sliced strawberries

1/2 cup cream cheese

1 tbsp sugar (or more if you like really sweet stuff)

1/2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

chocolate syrup or hot fudge

1 tsp butter

Prep time: 20 minutes

Serves: 6

Start by toasting your croissants. While they’re toasting, melt the butter on medium heat. Add the strawberries, vinegar, & sugar & stir for approximately 5 minutes or until the strawberries look dark red. Remove the strawberry mixture from the heat & let cool. Spread cream cheese on one side of the toasted croissant & then add the cooled strawberries & sauce. Add the other side of the croissant on top & drizzle your choice of chocolate. Refrigerate until ready to eat or chow down immediately!

P.S. I didn’t have balsamic vinegar so I used a substitute of 1/2 tsp of honey & 1 tbsp of apple cider vinegar & it was fine. Also, if you want to serve a larger crowd, slice the croissant in half & serve 10-12.