Suja Juices: The Best Tasting Edible Rainbows You’ll Ever Have

I’m late to the whole juicing game. But about a year ago, I ponied up and began juicing on my own. My go-to is six carrots, two golden delicious apples, a handful of spinach, a lime and a bit of ginger. Yum times twelve, right? The downside of this, of course is 1) You have to drink it fairly quickly before it goes bad 2) You wind up with random amounts of leftover produce and either have to a) buy more to juice again or b) turn orange from roasting, sauteeing, salad-ing and blending carrots into just about everything possible to finish that five pound bag and 3) having to deal with a lot of kitchen clean up.

Simply put, juicing is great, and I love doing it on my own when I can, but if I want to make it a consistent part of my diet (which, after all, a green drink or two a day, should be the goal, not just to go on some overly-ambitious seven-day cleanse…), I have to find a more convenient way.

Lo and behold: Suja Juices. These stunningly fresh juices (available at Whole Foods) are cold-pressed using a special method that lets them last in your fridge for several weeks and makes sure they’re never “cooked” like many other juices on the market (learn more here).

Some of my notes in case you decide to indulge in a delicious sipper (You won’t regret it).

Glow: My favorite. Beyond refreshing. Also served it to myself in a wine glass, to make it feel more “special. I was a skeptic at first, but it totally quells hunger pangs for a serving of seconds after dinner (okay, thirds). You can add a few sprigs of mint to it to make it even more festive. (P.S. Who wants to “drink” alone? Pictured here with my roomie Natalie’s Fiji Suja)

Fuel: This carrot orange concoction is great for sweet tooths–the carrots lend it a natural sweetness coupled with the oranges and a sprinkle of cinnamon (okay, a tablespoon) helps keep insulin levels steady if you want to spritz it up. I’m confident your dessert cravings will go away if you gulp one down post-meal.

Vanilla Cloud: Like a “gateway drug” for those adverse to trying green juices. Its subtle sweetness is the perfect morning breakfast or nighttime treat. Is it bad that I first thought it would be great with a kahlua cocktail? Okay, maybe. But seriously, this one was good enough to get my totally non-sweet-toothed boyfriend to enjoy multiple ones in a twenty four hour span. So yes, it’s that good. And I even noticed a bottle of V8 in his fridge the next week.

Vegan Foods I Won’t Be Eating Anytime Soon

Recently, Huffington Post did a roundup of “12 Surprising Vegan Foods.” Among the shockers, Sara Lee Oven Fresh Apple Pie, Ritz Crackers,Betty Crocker Bac-o’s Bacon Flavor Bits and Doritos Spicy Sweet Chili (Sorry for ruining the surprise). PETA even has an awesome list of Accidentally Vegan foods. And while it’s great that I can know when I indulge in an Oreo (or seven…) that no animal products were involved in the process, it’s these kinds of additive-laden, salt-sugar-fat-so-full, products, that in my eyes, at least, somewhat defeat the principle of going vegan: being a conscious eater who makes food choices designed to preserve the health of animals, the environment and yourself. While unintentionally vegan products are certainly worth doing a happy dance over every now and then, if you’re making these processed foods staples of your diet, even if you’re “vegan,” you’re probably treating your body just as badly as any processed-food addicted carnivore.

New Vegan Snack Obsession: Emmy’s Organics

I can be pretty much the world’s most boring person when it comes to snacks: I’m a fan of the one-ingredient ones that health magazines applaud, but regularly people pass up for more enticing options (almonds, pistachios, bananas and pears are my go-tos). But having recently sampled some of Emmy’s Organics raw, vegan delights, I think I might have to be just a little more open-minded. Her perfectly chewy macaroons are low in sugar, high in antioxidants and give you that perfect mid-afternoon perk or post-dinner treat. They’ve got a variety of tantalizing flavors (mint chip, coconut vanilla, dark cacao) but my favorite are the lemon ginger, with their subtle hint of spice. At only 5g a sugar per macaroon and with an ingredient list that’s completely recognizable, it’s a guilt-free indulgence I might just have to start making more regularly

Mission: Vegan Bolognese with “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Parm” Sauce

A trip to my boyfriend’s family’s garden always reminds me of two things. 1) Basil is a girl’s best friend and 2) It really is a crime to pay gosh knows how many dollars a pound for mushy or overly-hard, flavor-less tomatoes. Their lack of smell should probably tip me off. Armed with the spoils of their garden, I set out to recreate one of my omnivore faves: Spaghetti with meat sauce and Parmesan cheese.

When you’ve got fresh, natural ingredients at hand, it’s really not that difficult to pull off a spectacular meal without even trying. Using tomatoes, eggplant, garlic, nutritional yeast, lemon zest and a little imagination, my friend Chef Emilie (No, really, she got her degree here.) created a quick and satisfying dinner. Best of all? No obscure, strange items to search for at the supermarket and none of that horrible why-did-i-eat-so-much-i-feel-horrible ache in your stomach as I so often suffered from when eating omni.

This simple recipe is easier than you think. To make it “meatier,” I simply tweaked this recipe from Food.com to omit all the herbs I didn’t have on hand and add the ones I did (fresh chives and rosemary), doubled the basil and swapped the vegetable protein for crumbly ground seitan (like this one). You can also skip the vegetarian protein (tofu, seitan, etc.) and just keep it easy with veggies, garlic, and herbs. Or get creative and throw in some falafel rounds as “meatballs.” 

For the “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Parm” sauce, we improvised with what we had on hand. A few tweaks later: 4 tablespoons nutritional yeast flakes, blended with half a cup slivered almonds, a teaspoon of salt and a tablespoon of lemon zest seemed to yield the best, tangy results. Hey, it even fooled the omnivore who dined with us. So you know it must be good. (Disclosure: Before this meal, I was a huge nutritional yeast skeptic myself and thought in no way, shape or form could it replicate a beloved hunk of shaved parm, but the consistency, taste and “mixability” factors were all stunningly spot-on.)