Holiday Gift Guide: Vegan Edition

It’s that time of year and I LOVEEEEEE it! Today I’m bringing you a VEGAN Holiday Gift Guide. You may not know what to buy your plant-based aunt or cousin, so here I am to help! These gifts would also be great for anyone that eats healthy or loves to cook! I’m bringing you a ton of must-haves for the VEGANS + a few of my personal favorite products they might love also! Let me know what your favorites are!

This article may contain affiliate links, all opinions are my own. See my full disclosure policy here.

*Click on the picture for prices and more product info

  1. Asking around in some of my Facebook groups and pages…BY FAR, the number one thing they all said was a must have item is A NINJA MEGA KITCHEN SYSTEM! It does it alllllllllll. NUMBER ONE MUST HAVE!

2. Air Fryer. This one comes with a recipe book, which I would need since I don’t have one! This is going on my list though seeing as EVERYONE said they were dying for one and I’m just over here clueless. Apparently I’m missing out!

3. An all-in-one sushi making kit. We spend a lot of money on sushi at our house because we really love it!! This kit gives you everything you need to EASILY make it at home! if you just really want to up your present, go ahead and buy the sushi rice and the seaweed for them!

4. Veggie Bullet. I can’t say enough about these! I use mine all the time and it has saved me SO much time and stress when it comes to chopping and spiralizing veggies! It’s a GOTTA have for the kitchen. This product also comes with a hardcover recipe book!

5. A good set of knives. I spend so much time each week CHOPPING. My veggie bullet helps a ton but there are some things that just can’t go in there and you need to slice them yourself! A good set of knives is so important! Here’s a good link for a chef’s knife and a set of knives…

6. Instant Pot. I’m being honest, if you don’t have one of these, I feel bad for you. You’re just missing out in life. I use mine all the time and there are ENTIRE Facebook groups dedicated to recipes for these things. They are BY FAR a necessary item for your kitchen! (also, this link is a really good deal!)

7. Vitamix Blender. Imma be straight…we don’t have one of these…yet. But it’s on my list!! This one is for the fancy gift givers lol. In our family we do big, medium and small presents for each other. This would make a great “big” gift for the plant-based person in your life. We use our blender MULTIPLE times a day sometimes and it does leave little chunks (which is not good for the baby ugh) so I end up blending my soup, smoothie or whatever like 5-6 times to get all of the chunks out. This would solve that problem! If you are buying for someone who uses their blender multiple times a day. GET THEM THIS! (also, a REALLY good deal on these in the link)

8. Hand Immersion Blender. This is RIDICULOUSLY useful I can’t even get started. From the wise words in Toy Story “If you don’t have one, get one!” lol!

9. Coconut bowls. We make smoothie bowls most days for breakfast and these are the COOLEST bowls for smoothie bowls!

10. Disposable salad bowls with lid. We eat salads ALLLLL the time. When my husband takes them to work, sometimes they come home, sometimes they don’t. These are perfect (and cheap) for taking a salad with you on the go!

Here are some of my other favorite products that I love. All of these you can get on Amazon! When I start to run out, I just jump on and buy more. E-Z. P-Z. Any of these would make great stocking stuffers!

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Holiday Gift Guide: Vegan Edition

 

Vegan Recipes to check out: 

Delicious Plant-Based Vegan Nachos

Smoothie Bowl

Easy Crockpot Pumpkin Chili

The Perfect Smoothie

The Best Crockpot Vegan Chili

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Delicious Plant-Based/Vegan Nachos

This recipe is another one of our family favorites and I’m always getting positive comments on my Instagram stories when we make it! So I hope you guys enjoy!

This recipe feeds our family of 5. Before I jump in, I want to say that nachos are a personal food choice lol. There are so many things you can add, substitute or eliminate so I want to see how you guys change this up to your family’s taste buds! Please tag me on social media @brittanyeastham!  I also run the account @easyplantbasedrecipes on Instagram and Facebook! Give me a follow and tag me with your plant-based nacho recipe variations. Also, for this particular recipe there may be a few things that I can’t give you an exact amount on, but I’ll do my best. Some times I just kind of sprinkle stuff around until it looks like enough. It’s something all the professional cooks call “eyeballing it” lol.

This article may contain affiliate links, all opinions are my own. See my full disclosure policy here.

Plant-Based Nachos ingredients 

-2 bags of Yellow Corn Tortilla Chips (this is something I eyeball…I end up using about a bag and a half and we use the rest for chips and salsa)

-1 can of black beans (drained)

-1/2 bunch of cilantro (chopped)

-Green onions chopped (I eyeball this…but I probably use half a bag)

-1/2 of each- Red, Yellow, Orange Peppers chopped (save the other half to dip in garlic hummus!! mmmmm…)

-1 avocado (sliced and chopped into squares…I’ll have to do a video on this soon!)

-1 tomato sliced and chopped

-Taco Seasoning- to sprinkle on the top

-Salsa (any kind you like or have on hand!)

*Not Pictured: We also love to add corn and bbq sauce sometimes

Directions:

  1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Get a large casserole dish (or 2 or 3) and start laying out the yellow corn tortilla chips. This one LARGELY depends on how many people you’re feeding and how hungry they are! My family can PUT DOWN some nachos so I end up making 3 casserole dishes of these. Lay the chips out randomly a few layers thick. Once they are stacked 2-3 chips high I start the rest.
  3. Start “decorating” the chips. I ALWAYS have the kids help me with this. I think it’s so important to raise independent little mama’s that can cook healthy food, so I never miss an opportunity! Start evenly sprinkling on the black beans, cilantro, tomatoes, green onions, peppers, avocado, corn (if you are using) and whatever else sounds good!
  4. Sprinkle taco seasoning to taste all over the top. We love taco seasoning so I’m not shy with ours…. we like them heavily seasoned.
  5. Evenly spread a few tablespoons of salsa and/or BBQ sauce on the top. Too much of this will make the chips soggy (ask me how I know lol), but it’s a nice addition to add extra flavor! Otherwise the nachos are a little dry.
  6. Stick these in the oven on 350 for about 8-10 minutes to heat everything up a little bit.
  7. CHOW DOWN! These don’t save too great (the chips get soggy) so it took me making them a few times to get our portions right so we didn’t waste too much of it.

We make these so much and I’m always looking for variations, can’t wait to see what you guys come up with! Don’t forget to follow and tag us (@brittanyeastham + @easyplantbasedrecipes !

Save this to your Pinterest Board for a quick, easy, HEALTHY meal on your way out the door to soccer practice! (click on the icon in the upper left corner of the graphic)

Atlantic Salmon are usually farmed, and coloring agentsto turn the flesh pink.

 

Easy Crockpot Pumpkin Chili

That’s right folks. PUMPKIN chili. You’re welcome. I thought that my last veggie chili was good but this. This is where it’s at. My family BEGSSSSS for this and we’ve gotten in this awful habit (well not so awful) where we eat it at least once a week. Before “pumpkin everything” season leaves us for Thanksgiving and Christmas, save this to your Pinterest board and add it to you’re weekly menu. You literally THROW everything in a crockpot and let it sit on low all day until dinner time! I serve with vegan “garlic toast” aka toasted whole grain break with garlic hummus on top. To. Die. For. This recipe feeds our family of 5 with a small bowl of leftovers for lunch the next day!

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This article may contain affiliate links, all opinions are my own. See my full disclosure policy here.

Ingredients:

1 can of pumpkin

3 cans of chili beans (do not drain)

1 1/2 cups of cooked lentils

3 cans of fire roasted diced tomatoes (do not drain)

1 1/2 cups of frozen corn

1 medium onion, chopped

2 tablespoons of liquid smoke (more if you like a smokey taste)

1 tsp of oregano seasoning

1 tsp of dried basil leaves

1 tsp of cumin

1 tsp of cinnamon

2 tablespoons of brown sugar

2 teaspoons of worcestershire sauce

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Directions:

  1. Cook lentils, drain.
  2. Combine all ingredients in the crockpot
  3. Cook in crockpot on high for 4 hours or low for 6-8 hours, stir occasionally.

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Brown Cookies Recipe Pinterest Graphic

 
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Smoothie Bowls

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If you follow me on Instagram then you know we make smoothie bowls…pretttyyyyyy much every single day. I love that you can switch them up! Right now, seeing as it’s pumpkin everything, we have been using this Pumpkin Granola by Nature’s Path and it’s so good! Anyways…We love them, the kids love them (they feel like they are eating ice cream for breakfast everyday) and we are filling their bodies up with insane amounts of vitamins and antioxidants to help prevent sickness and disease, so it’s a win-win!

This article may contain affiliate links, all opinions are my own. See my full disclosure policy here.

I get a ton of questions about these so I wanted to give you a quick step-by-step on how to make these and what to put in them!

  1. Start by making your favorite smoothie! The best part about this, is you can not only change up your toppings on your smoothie bowl, you can change up your smoothie to your liking! Our family loves a really basic berry smoothie ad we have perfected it so we keep it pretty much the same since it’s easy for me to add to the shopping list each week. You can find our smoothie recipe here. It’s pretty perfect, not gonna lie!
  2. Once you’ve made your smoothie, pour it into your bowl. I found some really cool smoothie bowls you should check out here if you don’t have some already!
  3. Then start my adding your toppings! I like to get fancy with my placement, but you can just dump it all i there if you like! My fav toppings are: granola, shredded coconut, sliced almonds, chia seeds and whatever fruit I have that week! Blueberries are quick and easy but mangos and pears bring out the tropical flavor in a berry smoothie!

So basically you are making a healthy, delicious, sickness and disease fighting cereal!

 

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Smoothie Bowls

The Best Crockpot Vegan Chili

This is the easiest – most delicious – plant based crockpot chili I’ve ever made. Recipes like this don’t make me miss the meat one single bit. Plus, I feel good knowing my family is eating a meal full of veggies! This is so easy to do. Enjoy!

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This article may contain affiliate links, all opinions are my own. See my full disclosure policy here.

Ingredients:

2 – 15 oz cans of black beans (drained)

1 1/2 cups of cooked lentils

3- 14.5oz cans of fire roasted diced tomatoes (don’t drain)

1 1/2 cups of frozen corn

1/3 cup of uncooked quinoa

1 medium onion, chopped

red, yellow, orange peppers. 1/2 of each, chopped

3 tablespoons of chili powder

1 tablespoon of liquid smoke (more if you like a smokey taste)

1 tsp of oregano seasoning

1 tsp of dried basil leaves

1 tsp of cumin

1 tsp of cinnamon

1 tsp of garlic powder

vegetable stock or water (amount varies to desired consistency)

*optional: top with chives + cilantro

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  1. Cook lentils, drain.
  2. Chop peppers and use 1/2 of each color in the crockpot.
  3. Combine all ingredients in the crockpot and add vegetable stock or water 2 inches above ingredients.
  4. Cook in crockpot on high for 4 hours or low for 6-8 hours, stir occasionally. *Watch the water/vegetable stock level. The quinoa will soak up a lot of it, you may have to add more so it doesn’t get too dry.

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The Best Crockpot Vegan Chili- SO EASY!

Trusting God

Trust in the Lord with all of your heart and lean not on your own understanding, in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path. Proverbs 3:5

 

These have been very dear words to my soul as Jeff and I have navigated these last few months in our life. We have had some unexpected bumps in our road that have caused us to take a step back and evaluate our life and how we are doing it.

 

I’ll give you the short version (if I can) . I’ve been having stomach problems for almost a year and I’ve seen several doctors to try to figure out what’s going on. I had some scans done a few months back and they showed that my gallbladder was only working 14%. So they knew we needed to get it taken out. Now I recognize that this is not a major situation, really I do. But anytime you have to go in and have a surgery, there is plenty of anxiety to go around wanting to make sure the procedure goes well, recovery has no complications, the financial aspect of everything, dealing with the kids and making sure they weren’t scared….figuring out how I was NOT going to pick up Gia for X amount of days, Jeff missing work and missing out on fun Summer plans, and the list goes on. There was a lot of planning and sacrificing that was going to have to be done. But obviously I REALLY wanted to feel better.

 

Right before my gallbladder surgery, I had to get a routine ultrasound on a thyroid nodule I’ve known about for a few years now. When the test results came back, it had doubled in size this past year and my doctors were concerned and wanted to get it taken out.

 

I went from a fun Summer full of plans to 2 surgeries within 3 weeks. None of this was even on my radar a month earlier. I was frustrated and a little disappointed to say the least.

 

During this same few weeks we got devastating news that Jeff’s mom has been diagnosed with breast cancer and is facing surgery and treatments in the next few weeks.

 

I am very blessed that none of my health issues turned out to be serious (my thyroid nodule was benign!), but Peggy’s news just had us floored. She takes great care of herself, so it was a complete shock to everyone.

 

During all of this, I was really overwhelmed if you want to know the truth. I held it together pretty well, but it was a lot to take in, in a few short weeks.

 

This is the part where Jeff and I started evaluating our life. How much time we spend with each other, how much we do and don’t workout, how much sleep we get, our diet, the chemicals we bring into our house. All of it. We all know that these things DO make a difference in our health and we have made a commitment to the best of our ability, sanity and budget to try to give each other and our baby girls, the healthiest life we know how.

 

We are committing to try to sleep more, laugh harder, play outside more, love hard, eat a plant-based diet, make more memories, teach our kids the importance of food and exercise, and more than anything to love God, life and each other with everything inside of them! We know that we aren’t perfect and we will have days where we splurge, and I already have things I don’t plan on switching that some people might think I should. I’m gonna mess up some recipes and have lazy days where I don’t go on my daily walk, but we are re-committing our entire family to God and taking care of our bodies and most importantly, trusting Him with the things we cannot control.

 

I’m trusting God with my weaknesses and asking Him to help me when I have bad days or don’t feel like it. I’m trusting God to help me be creative and make this journey fun for my family. I’m trusting God that He will fill in the gaps of my life as I continue to educate myself on a better way to live. I’m trusting God as I add new things into my life that weren’t there before that He will make them MORE fulfilling than the things we are taking out of our life.

 

Maybe more than anything I’m just reminding myself through all of this to simply trust Him. He knows what’s best for us. I know in my heart that I haven’t fulfilled some of the things in my life that I’m meant to do and I believe this is His nudge to help me get ready and prepared for them. God has reminded me through all of this that He has His best for us, now maybe it’s time for me to do the same. Treat myself good!

 

I don’t know what this journey looks like or how long some of my eating/workout trends will last, but I know that God is calling our family to be better and stronger than before, mentally, physically, spiritually and emotionally.

 

When sickness and disease comes to your house, followed by the anxiety of the unknown, the questions of why and a ton of other emotions…don’t forget that you have a choice! You can let it overtake you or you can take action and grow and allow God to show you HIS path for your life. So cheers to the unknown, figuring it all out one day at a time and finding all the cool vegan restaurants in town lol! We’ve been eating vegan for a few weeks now and we are surprisingly are loving it so far! I’m sure there will be plenty of recipes to share in the near future! Make sure you follow along over at my Instagram account for all the fun!

 

Here’s to raising my own bar…and for myself!