American Greetings

Yes, veganism is hitting mainstream! Sprinkles Cupcakes in Beverly Hills on Little Santa Monica has a vegan cupcake. The red velvet is absolutely out of this vegan world, and marked with a red “V”. If you are local, you must visit and try one for yourself!

The Freegan Vegan
Eat Smart…
Eat Green

     

 I’m always looking for great vegan restaurants in my local area. My daughter’s piano teacher told me about the Golden Mean Cafe’ in Santa Monica, CA. I dragged my husband with me, as he is my partner in crime when it comes to new finds. Actually, I like to try what he orders, and vice versa.

Our server spouted off several specials, all sounding delicious. I was told prior to going to order the Lean Mean Veggie Burger with the works (added tempeh bacon, vegan cheese and avocado). The burger is made from beans, grains and veggies. My dish came with a side salad of spinach, black beans and yams dressed in a cilantro lime vinaigrette. Absolutely delicious and I would return just for this dish alone.

My husband ordered one of the specials, which was a sweet corn tamale cake garnished with a red sauce and soy cheese accompanied with a couscous side salad that was light and fresh tasting. I loved his too and would go back for this dish as well.

We decided to take home a slice of the top 3 cakes in the  picture. I love chocolate, and as this cake was delicious, I found myself loving the coconut iced cake even more. How could that be?! All 3 desserts were to die for! There are gluten-free desserts too!

Golden Mean Cafe serves up soup, salads, sandwiches, wraps, pizza, shakes, pastries and several appetizers and entrees. The cafe  is quaint and has a very comfortable and eco-friendly atmosphere using warm tones and cozy cushions.

Check out their website for location and hours and plan your visit this week.

The Freegan Vegan
Eat Smart…
Eat Green

What a fabulous fast-food restaurant chain that offers animal-free cuisine. I have been to the Santa Monica, CA location several times and have been impressed with each visit. The crowd of patrons was quite interesting. I was astonished with the sheer number of people walking in to order food. The ages ranged from kids to elderly. I am thrilled the veggie/vegan movement is hitting the masses and people are opening their minds to try new foods which are better for them, better tasting, and harmless to the animals and the environment. The veggie burger is mouth-watering delicious. They serve up great desserts too! Try the Chill Out Wings and the Sweet Potato Fries pictured below.

 

You and your kids will love them equally!

Visit their site for more information and locations. It’s worth a visit!

The Freegan Vegan
Eat Smart…
Eat Green

Another pizza joint that makes delicious vegan pizza is Z Pizza. They have many locations in 17 states, so check for one in your area. Order the Vegan Tuscan Pizza, just be sure to say no dairy-no cheese, but add Daiya. I’m craving more! You can also try the Berkley Veggie and California, both veganized, just be sure to mention it!

The Freegan Vegan
Eat Smart…
Eat Green

Being vegan, ordering pizza to be delivered has always been something I never thought I would be able to do again. After all, what pizza joint makes dairy-free pizza? On my search for one that did, I was thrilled to discover Pizza Fusion, an organic pizzeria. Aside from regular pizzas, they have a few vegan choices. I have ordered pizza to be delivered on many occasions from the Santa Monica Ocean Park store, and have dined at the Hollywood Sunset Blvd location. Consistency is a good thing, and this place delivers the best tasting vegan pizzas. I opt for the Very Vegan with crimini mushrooms, roasted garlic, tomato sauce and soy cheese. I actually have them make half with soy cheese and the other half with Daiya (soy-free and gluten-free). I had this on both crusts, the organic white and the multi-grain gluten-free. I love them equally.

I always get the Fusion Salad with Goddess dressing, since these are dairy-free. My family loves the food and anyone would be happy with a place where you can order from both sides of the menu and please everyone. They even have a vegan dessert, a homemade brownie that is gluten-free and highly delicious.

The Hollywood store has dine-in specials, from free pizza Monday, wine and dine Tuesday, draft beer Wednesday, gluten-free Thursday, and a daily happy hour from 4-7p. Check them out today!

Visit their website for locations and hours.

The Freegan Vegan
Eat Smart…
Eat Green

I scream, you scream, we all scream for KindKreme!

I was thrilled to hear there was an ice cream shop that offered raw and vegan ice cream. KindKreme serves up gourmet and organic dairy-free delights in many flavors. They also serve cold-pressed coffee, fresh juice, smoothies and shakes.

I took my husband to the Studio City, CA location where we sampled many unique flavor combinations. It was such a difficult choice deciding what to get since everything tasted fresh and delicious. I was thinking strongly about getting the ginger basil, which is to die for.  However, since I am a chocoholic, I opted for the salted carmel chocolate. It was the perfect balance of goodness! My husband decided to go with a shake made with coconut KindKreme and topped it off with a refreshing passion fruit flavor.

Owner Mimi Moss and Reid served up some delicious delights that is worth the trip. Easy access off the 101 freeway. Check out the refrigerator section. They sell vegan nacho cheese dip. Go there today!

KindKreme is easy to find. It’s on Cahuenga Blvd at Regal in the corner strip mall by Poquito Mas and The Good Neighbors Restaurant. If you can’t find a parking spot in the lot, then drive up Regal and park on the street and walk down while enjoying the stroll to vegan heaven.

The Freegan Vegan
Eat Smart…
Eat Green

If you’re in the Costa Mesa, CA area, visit 118 Degrees for fresh gourmet living cuisine. The restaurant  has as extensive menu, so there is something for everyone. When I visited, I started with the fried avocado mini tostado, a buckwheat shell with spicy peppita cheese, chopped spinach, cilantro, corn, and topped with fried avocado. It was absolutely delicious! I sampled the tortilla soup which was also outstanding! But I couldn’t wait to try my main course, which was the lemon pesto pasta. Imagine thin strips of zucchini (the pasta) with lemon pesto sauce, marinated portobello mushrooms, grape tomatoes topped off with fresh basil. Delicious! I took my sister there for her birthday, and she had the mole enchiladas, which she raved about. To end our visit, we had a trio sampler for dessert, which were small bites and all highly delicious.

The restaurant serves up cuisine made entirely from plant-based ingredients, such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and sprouted grains. The nut cheese is made by blending fresh herbs with sprouted nuts and seeds. The restaurant can accommodate nut-free dishes and is dairy-free, soy-free, wheat-free and high in enzymes, vitamins and minerals!

The name, 118 Degrees, refers to the commonly accepted temperature at which the natural enzyme value and nutritional contents of raw plant foods begin to break down and become useless for the body. One benefit of eating raw food is the energy derived from the enzymes and phyto nutrients available in foods that are still living.

The prices are reasonable and the experience was wonderful.  Menu and location can be found at
http://shop118degrees.com/118.html

The Freegan Vegan
Eat Smart…
Eat Green