Since the 4th of July is nearly a day away, I thought I would share appealing recipes I’ve found that would bode over well at a BBQ event (cuz, let’s face it – there’s nothing more American than roasting animal flesh over a grill lol (and oy!)). So, here are some vegan goodies you can bring along with you to convert the masses (*laughs maniacally*) & some great resources:
- VegWeb’s Fourth of July recipe compilation here.
- Oh She Glow’s long-weekend recipe compilation here. The asparagus potato salad and chocolate chip cookie dough balls sound particularly great!
- Chocolate Covered Katie’s Red, White & Blueberries recipe compilation here.
- Diet, Dessert ‘N Dogs’ Patriotic Eats compilation (sugar-free, gluten-free, vegan) here.
- Cilantro Lime Chickpea Salad via Oh She Glows here.
- Yukon Gold White Bean Burgers via Peas & Thank You here. These look amazing!
- Southern Macaroni Salad via VegWeb here. Sounds delicious and it’s vegan, but it will sure break your calorie-bank if you haven’t pre-planned (so plan…?).
- Macaroni Salad (more healthy than above) via 101 Cookbooks here. Ditch the cheese.
- Tempeh & Potato Salad via Vegetarian Times here.
- Ginger Lime Edamame Sweet Potato Burgers via Choosing Raw here.
- OMG Oven Baked Onion Rings via PPK here.
- Perfect Grilled Portobellos via PPK here.
- Falafel Patties via Green Food, Green Thumb, High Heels here
- Tempeh BBQ Baked Beans via VegNews here.
- Frankie’s Vegan Spare Ribs via VegNews here.
- Homemade vegan sausages via VegWeb here.
- My “Chicken” Chickpea Salad here.
- My Pasta Bake here.
- My Cheddar and Rosemary Cornbread here.
- For dessert, try: VegWeb’s Strawberry Shortcakes here; VegNews‘ Fresh Strawberry Pie here; Dreena’s Vegan Recipe’s Pecan Pie here; PPK’s Magical Coconut Cookie Bars here or my lemon poppy seed cake here.
- Check out my list of store-bought vegan burgers here.
And, because I love to be bossy, here are some general etiquette and mind-your-health rules to keep in mind:
- 4th of July is a celebration of America’s independence and while that means you are free to eat like a sumo wrestler wading in a pool of potato salad with his mouth open, you can also exercise your independence not to. p.s. If you’re watching calories, stay away from potato salad, macaroni salad, etc. unless you made it. Even if it’s vegan, it’s usually calorific.
- As much as I love big hunks of meat dangled in front of my face – don’t. It was funny the first few times when you did it while saying slyly “mmm meat,” but I was mostly laughing at you. Do it again and I’ll throw your ass on the BBQ and chant “meat! meat!” while beating my chest.
- If you’re hosting a vegan to your BBQ and insist on providing her with vegan options, make sure they are indeed vegan options. I can’t tell you how many times (okay, only 3x) that someone has been so kind as to insist on providing me with non-meat bbq alternatives only to put me in a really awkward sitch when I read the label and find eggs in the hot dog buns and egg whites in the veggie patties, or when I see that you’re grilling my vegan sausage alongside real meat. Don’t let the meats co-mingle with the meat alternatives, people! Treat veganism like an allergy if you have to – yes, I am allergic to meat. I will die if you let my non-meat co-mingle with the meat meat.
- Remember that even one hot dog can set you back 300+ calories, so try to fill up on clean, whole foods like raw veggies, fresh fruit, salads, etc. Or, skip the hot dog bun and use a slice of sprouted bread, a piece of whole-wheat lavash bread or a nice big romaine leaf.
If you’re like most people I know, you’re going to eat meat (maybe I need to join meetup.com to find some local vegan friends, eh?). Here are some things you can do to mind your health:
- Choose organic. Just say no to second-hand drugs.
- Choose humane. (I hear the Vegan Police scoffing and saying “humane meat is an oxymoron!” but I am ignoring them). I am actually not sure there are hot dogs out there with the 3rd-party-verified “humane” certification. A simple Google search did not yield much…
- Choose “Uncured” or “No added nitrates.” Unfortunately, even “no added nitrates” hot dogs have nitrates in them – they’re just naturally occurring. The New York Times has an excellent article on nitrates in hot dogs here. Basically, “natural” hot dogs tend to be better, but they still have nitrates in them even when they say “uncured” or “no added nitrates.” Why are nitrates bad? Most scientists believe that consumption of nitrates is linked to an increased incidence of colon cancer and diabetes. Good rule of thumb – the less processed the better. If it’s some weird amalgamation of animal fleshes and loads of unpronounceable ingredients occur in the label, just say no. Applegate & Boar’s Head are the brands I see many of my healthy-blogger peers use.
- Choose low-sodium options.
- Try a SmartDog. I get that hot dogs can tie into nostalgia, but if you’re open to trying a healthy, delicious, non-meat alternative, I suggest SmartDogs. You’ll need two per bun to get the fulfilling bite-full, but you’ll still only rake in 90 calories, 0g fat & 12% of your daily iron. Only sucky thing is that two of ‘em will = 26% of your daily sodium cap, but eat clean the rest of the day and you’re golden!
- Watch your buns. Heh, “buns” But, really – it’s very hard to find 100% whole-wheat hot dog buns. Nature’s Own offers 100% whole-wheat hot dog buns, but they, unfortunately, also have dough conditioners in them. That aside, they’re one of the best options aside from using Ezekiel sandwich bread, or whole-wheat pitas as buns. You’ll be surprised that seemingly healthy options, like Oroweat’s 100% whole wheat hot dog buns, have high fructose corn syrup!
and, I leave you with this
The Cranky One