Monday, August 26, 2013

The Vegan Garden, Day 1

One of the biggest concerns I hear from new vegans or people considering going vegan is simply not having the time to cook. For some who live in vegan-friendly cities, dining out is the answer. But not everyone lives in a town with a vegan restaurant and certainly not everyone has expendable income.

I'm lucky to live in a vegan-friendly city, and I'm lucky to have enough free time to cook big meals a few nights a week that can stretch throughout the week. But for those who aren't, there are vegan meal delivery services like The Vegan Garden.

The Vegan Garden delivers homemade, frozen meals through FedEx, and you can pick how many breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and desserts you want through their meal deals. They sent me a three-day supply to review here, so that's what I'll be blogging about for the next couple of nights. They even included a meal plan that told me what to eat for what meal on what day. Here's my Monday offerings.

I'm not sure how everything was still frozen when it arrived at my office a couple weeks back. The dry ice in the shipping box had dissipated, but every package was completely frozen, even the baked goods. So you don't need to worry about things thawing during shipment.

For breakfast today, they sent me a Blueberry Muffin.

I know some folks are used to eating small morning meals on the go, but I'm a big breakfast kind of girl. So I added a banana and a glass of almond milk. The muffin tasted fresh, even after being frozen and thawed. And it was only 79 calories! All the calories and ingredients are listed on their website, by the way.

Lunch was this Quinoa Salad with green beans, chickpeas, and a cumin vinaigrette.

The instructions say to thaw and eat this cold. But I warmed mine up because I failed to read the directions, thinking it was supposed to be a hot meal. And it was actually amazing hot! I expected to have to add seasonings to these meals because I like strong flavors. But this was well-seasoned and didn't need any dressing up. I served this with a green side salad.

Dinner was Osaka Teriyaki Tofu.

I know it's only day one of three, but I'm pretty sure this will be my favorite dish out of all the ones they sent. The tofu was fried and very well-seasoned (but yes, I did add sriracha), and it was sauteed with broccoli, green beans, peppers, a sweet and savory teriyaki sauce, and sesame oil. Loved the chewy tofu, which probably only got better with freezing. I served this over some brown rice that I made to beef up my dishes over the week.

I was afraid the portions would be rather small when I saw the frozen packages, but once thawed, these are actually sizable portions that make a full meal when combined with rice or a salad.

Each day's shipment includes a dessert too. Today's dessert was this Banana Bar.

Now I know it doesn't look super-sexy. But this was actually like a soft slice of banana bread. It's made with bananas, oats, raisins, and brown sugar. At only 79 calories, it's practically a guilt-free dessert.

I loved today's meals. The tofu was definitely the highlight, but everything was delicious. And since I've got a busy week ahead of me, it's nice to know I don't have to cook.

Check back tomorrow for day two on The Vegan Garden meal plan.


Sheridan said...

How cool! And those meal items sound good - I would gladly eat all of that!

Dana Vickerson said...

oh wow! that looks really awesome. i think i will certainly have to try it!

Adriana Robles said...

Everything looks so delicious!

Trinityp333 said...

Do they offer gluten free?

Bianca said...

Trinity, they do!! Several of their items are labeled gluten-free. The quinoa salad I had was and I believe the tofu dish too.

Sarah said...

Very cool!! Looking forward to seeing the next two days!