February 2, 2015

Is Being Vegan Expensive?

I am frequently asked, "Is being vegan expensive?". Short answer, "No way!". Vegans eat a relatively affordable lifestyle consisting of lots of fruit and veggies, beans, seeds, nuts, grains, wholefoods etc... You can purchase all of these staples at your local supermarket. Think about how expensive meat is! Now replace this with tofu and beans for example... it will be much cheaper! Just think, most people will buy a range of vegan food. I am sure that you will see the average non-vegan person throwing some rice, pasta, fruit and veggies in their trolley. What is the difference? You just won't be adding meat, dairy or eggs to your trolley... some of the most expensive products ever! Also, the great thing about our eating habits is that it is so nourishing, satisfying and amazing for your body so one grocery visit should last you quite a while! Oh and don't forget, just because you are vegan doesn't mean you now have to eat your weight in organic, sun-dried, picked at sunset by a virgin, bag of activated, spirulina covered chia seeds. Have a look below for some tips on keeping your vegan grocery list to a minimum:

  • Shop at your local supermarket as prices will be a lot more affordable compared to a specialised healthfood store... especially for your organic groceries!
  • Check out any local fruit and veggie markets or stores that may sell cheaper fresh produce.
  • Buy in bulk!
  • One bag of beans, lentils etc... will yield a few meals! Cheap as!
  • Check out your discount grocery stores such as Aldi. They sell really cheap nuts and seeds!
  • Don't go crazy on the mock-meats and faux-cheeses... they are so expensive and aren't too healthy. But by all means, have them as a treat once in a while if you feel like it!
  • Try making your own veggie burgers and marinating your own tofu. This will save you loads of money!
  • Grow your own herbs! I cannot stress this enough. I hate buying those tiny bunches of herbs from the supermarket which only have about 5 usable leaves. Grow your own and go crazy with the herbs!
  • Check out our vegan grocery lists. There are so many things you wouldn't know are vegan... and cheap too!
  • I find that Indian and Mexican are the cheapest cuisines to make... and the yummiest!
  • You don't have to splurge on recipes that use a billion raw organic cashews and your weight in unrefined, pressed at sunset, jar of coconut oil if you cannot afford it.
  • There are so many websites for vegan recipes on a budget! 
  • Plan your recipes for the week out. This way you can cook on a budget.
  • Plan your recipes out and use recipes that call for similar ingredients.
  • Check out your grocery shop brochures to see which fruit and veggies are cheap this week... then stock up, make a big pot of soup and freeze it!

Just think, eating well is the best thing for your health and will save you on lots of medical costs later on in life! 

Feel free to share your tips below :)

January 29, 2015

Vegan Chocolate and Peanut Butter Cheesecake Slice Recipe

This is my favourite cheesecake ever. I know that I am on a vegan no-bake cheesecake binge at the moment but this one is the BEST!

This recipe is a trustworthy medical cure for the following:
  • break-ups
  • I-want-to-stay-in-my-pjs-all-day type of days
  • sweet cravings
  • midnight munchies
  • those days where you just need to stuff your face with chocolate

When I create a recipe, I already have an idea in mind of how I want it to taste, how easy I want it to be, what I want others reactions to be when they eat it, what I want it to look like and how easily it can be stored/saved. I really wanted to ensure that this chocolate cheesecake slice would tick a few boxes... and oh my gosh it did! I wanted it to be:
  1. Be amazingly delicious. tick!
  2. Be incredibly easy to make. tick!
  3. Have lots of crazily mouth-watering layers. tick!
  4. Look impressive. tick!
  5. Taste incredibly decadent. tick!
  6. No-bake. tick!
  7. Melt in your mouth chocolatey goodness. tick!
  8. Creamy, dreamy cheesecakey layer. tick!
  9. Be devoured in one sitting by my family. tick!
  10. Store in the freezer for a few weeks. tick!

If I could post you a piece in the mail, I would. Enjoy!

serves 20

Base Layer:
   3/4 cup dried dates
   2 tablespoons peanut butter
   1 cup oats
   2 tablespoons cocoa
   1 tablespoon maple syrup
   1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cheesecake Layer:
   3 cups raw cashews, soaked overnight
   3/4 cup maple syrup
   1 cup refined coconut oil
   3/4 cup fresh lemon juice
   2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Chocolate Layer:
   1/4 cup refined coconut oil
   1/4 cup cocoa
   1/4 cup maple syrup

Peanut Drizzle Layer:
   2 tablespoons peanut butter, melted

  1. Make the base layer: Add all base ingredients to a processor and blend until combined. Push evenly into a 20cm diameter square cake tin. Place in the freezer.
  2. Make the cheesecake layer: Add all cheesecake layer ingredients to a processor and blend until smooth and creamy. Pour over the base in the cake tin. Place back in the freezer for 3 hours or so until hardened.
  3. Make the chocolate layer: In the meantime, whisk all chocolate layer ingredients together until smooth. If there are lumps, heat the mixture and stir until the lumps have dissolved. Pour the chocolate layer evenly over the cheesecake layer and place back in the freezer.
  4. Make the peanut drizzle layer: Melt the peanut butter. Pour into a piping bag or just use a spoon to drizzle over the chocolate layer. Place back in the freezer until set.
  5. When you are ready to devour the deliciousness, remove from the freezer for 30 minutes to 1 hour until it has softened. I wish I could I come over and eat some! Enjoy.

The nutrition information above is an approximate guideline.

January 25, 2015

Vegan Birthday Sponge Cake Recipe


I really didn't know what to call it. I was so excited that I made a list with a few options:
  1. Vegan Birthday Sponge Cake
  2. Vegan TRIFLE Cake (It seriously tastes like a trifle)
  3. Vegan Victorian Sponge Cake
  4. Vegan Strawberries and Custard Cream Cake
  5. The Best Damn Cake In The Whole World
If you follow us regularly, you would know that I always guarantee that you will love our recipe and urge you to make it. However, I really really really mean this now. This cake is the epitome of delicious cakey amazing goodness. It is:
  • fluffy? tick!
  • decadent? tick!
  • sponge-cakey? tick!
  • creamy? tick!
  • sweet but not too sweet? tick!
  • easy? tick!

This recipe truly ticks every box. I think it is perfect for a birthday cake. Try it and thank me later!

serves 12

   1 cup caster sugar
   1/2 cup margarine
   1 teaspoon vanilla extract
   2 cups self-raising flour
   1 cup plant milk (such as Soy Milky Lite)
   1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

Custard cream:
   2 cups plant milk (such as Soy Milky Lite)
   4 tablespoons corn flour
   6 tablespoons caster sugar
   2 teaspoons vanilla extract
   2 tablespoons margarine

   icing sugar, to dust
   fresh strawberries, sliced
   strawberry jam

These are Australian measurements, so 1 cup = 250ml and 1 tablespoon = 20ml.

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius and spray a 20cm diameter spring form tin with oil (I use spray coconut oil).
  2. Make the cake: In a large bowl, beat the caster sugar, margarine and vanilla until creamy. Add all other 'cake' ingredients and beat until smooth.
  3. Pour the cake mixture into the tin and place in the oven.
  4. Bake for 30 minutes or so until lightly brown on top, risen and a skewer comes out clean when poked in the centre. If you have a hot-ass oven like mine, you may need to lower the temperature half way through to avoid the top burning.
  5. Remove from the oven and allow the cake to cool. Remove from the tin.
  6. In the meantime, make the custard cream. Mix the corn flour with a dash of plant milk first until the lumps have dissolved. Add this and the rest of the 'custard cream' ingredients to a pot on medium heat and whisk until combined. Bring to the boil and then take off the heat and allow to cool. Set aside.
  7. Once the cake has cooled, carefully cut it in half.
  8. Lightly spread some strawberry jam on the bottom half.
  9. Pour the custard over the strawberry jam and spread evenly.
  10. Cover the custard with sliced fresh strawberries.
  11. Place the top of the cake back on.
  12. Dust with icing sugar.
  13. DEVOUR!

January 24, 2015

Vegan Lamingtons Recipe

When I was little, I loved lamingtons. I remember you could buy them either plain or filled with jam. There is nothing yummier than a fluffy mouthful of sponge cake, coated in decadent chocolate and rolled in luscious coconut. I really do believe that coconut makes EVERY dessert better... don't you? Anywho, when I was a wee-little-lady (being 5ft2" I am probably still classed as a wee-little-lady), every weekend I would go to my best-friend's house for a sleepover. Her mum always bought the pre-packaged supermarket lamingtons and sat them in a dish under a dome on their kitchen bench. It is a fond memory. It didn't matter what time of year it was, she always had a bunch ready to be eaten... and a few emergency packets kept away just in case hungry-sweet-obsessed-ladies like myself came over and ate them all. She was like a machine! As soon as the last lamington had slightly lifted off the dish, another packet was poured in and 'VOILA!', it was round 2. Now personally, I believe our vegan lamington balls are MUCH yummier than the packaged kind. This is in no way trying to offend my friend's mum who I personally believe did such a great job of filling my belly every time I visited. These balls are fluffy, slightly sweet, coconutty, delicious, decadent, incredibly easy to make and VEGAN. A perfect recipe for a vegan Australia Day! There is no way you will wish to buy the packaged sort when you can make these little babies. Have a go. I promise you will love them!

makes 24

   1 cup self-raising flour
   1/2 cup white sugar
   1/4 cup plain-flavoured oil
   3/4 cup plant milk (such as Soy Milky Lite)
   1 teaspoon vanilla extract
   1/2 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

Chocolate Icing:
   2 tablespoons cocoa
   1/2 cup icing sugar
   1/3 cup plant milk (such as Soy Milky Lite)
   2 tablespoons margarine, melted
   desiccated coconut, to roll 

These are Australian measurements, so 1 cup = 250ml and 1 tablespoon = 20ml.

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius and spray a 24 hole mini cupcake tray with oil (I use spray coconut oil).
  2. Beat all 'ball' ingredients until smooth.
  3. Pour the batter into the mini cupcake tray in about 1 tablespoon portions.
  4. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes until lightly browned on top.
  5. Allow the balls to cool.
  6. In the meantime, mix together all chocolate icing ingredients until smooth. 
  7. When the balls have cooled, dip each one in chocolate icing and roll in coconut. Do this with all balls.
  8. Serve immediately or keep in an airtight jar until devoured. Enjoy!