How to Lower Your Laundry Impact

Being sustainable and green in all parts of your life is how to really make a difference. Recycling and re-using is a start, but there is so much more you can do!

There is a product I’ve recently come across that I love! It’s called berryplus, and it’s a wonderfully natural laundry detergent that not only does not use harsh chemicals, but the packaging is also very “green”. Your normal laundry detergent comes in a big plastic bottle, and you choose the amount you put in. Whenever I did laundry, depending on how dirty it was I would just pour an amount in. For really dirty stuff, I’d put in a lot. Berryplus has little capsules that have the right amount of detergent all ready to go. I didn’t even think about how much I was using, and what kind of chemicals were in the detergent. Now I buy all my body wash, shampoo, and face care stuff natural and free of chemicals and parabens. For some reason I never really made a laundry change until I saw this product. I did think about it sometimes, but I never acted on it. At the moment, I still live in my parents house so I just use whatever detergent they would buy for the convenience. Here is an article that where berryplus was tested and compared to other detergents.

Other steps you can take are to consolidate your laundry, air dry clothes when possible, and use cold water when washing. By consolidating your laundry, you are saving time and also making washing clothes more efficient and easy. Organize what you need to wash into undergarments, whites, etc.  Berryplus works well with cold water, and encourages you to use cold water. Cold water washing saves energy, and “According to the US Department of Energy, as much as 90% of the energy used to wash clothes in a conventional machine is used for heating the water” (*). Air drying clothes obviously cuts down on dryer usage and overall water and electricity usage!

Overall I really like it! I tend to have a lot of laundry and being able to cut down on plastic, chemicals and my overall footprint is a good feeling. Vegan cuts even has a deal for berryplus on their website along with a bunch of other wonderful vegan products!

Raw Peanut Butter Carob Oatmeal Cookies

I suddenly had an urge to make something sweet and something chocolately. I made two batches of these, one with actual peanut butter and one with almond butter. The almond butter actually turned out even better in my opinion, but either way it’s delicious! I’ve seen a lot of recipes for oatmeal cookies like this where the batter is heated on the stove before being chilled. I decided to go all raw and just mix everything together and chill them and see how it went. It turned out great, they make awesome little cookies.

Ingredients:

1 cup organic raw oats

dash of salt

1 tsp flax seed

1/3 cup coconut milk

2 tbsp maple syrup

1/4 cup liquid coconut oil

1/4 cup almond or peanut butter

1/3 cup carob powder

1/4 cup chopped dried cherries or pited dates

Put the salt and oats and flax in one bowl. Put the coconut milk, maple syrup, almond or peanut butter and carob powder all in another bowl and mix well. Add the wet to the dry and mix everything together until the oats are all well coated and everything is incorporated. Take the cherries and / or dates and put them in a food processor to chop them up small and then mix them into the whole thing. Cover a tray with plastic wrap and place about a tbsp of batter down and flatten it to make cookies. You can of course make these as big or small as you like. Put them in the freezer for one to two hours and you can keep them in there and eat them or transfer them to your fridge and eat them. You could add chopped nuts to these or coconut flakes and they’d be even better! Goji berries would also be awesome in these in place of cherries.

If you want these to be really peanut buttery add another 1/4 cup! With this recipe it’s just a subtle amount of peanut buttery flavor

Raw Foods

A tart I’m working on and chocolate cashew cream

I’ve been feeling so inspired by raw foods lately. I first heard about raw foods when browsing through vegan blogs on tumblr and the like. Then I found a couple of raw foodists on youtube and checked out some of their testimonies and other videos. My first thought was, “this is crazy. Completely raw?” I, of course, was totally unaware of the vast world of raw food. All I could think of was a world without pasta and cooked veggies. I did a little research, I didn’t dig too deeply into thought because I just really didn’t know what it was all about. I thought it was kind of crazy to be honest. Months later, my mom being the nice lady that she is was doing some research on vegan restaurants in the area and found a particular cafe only about 20 minutes from our house. Not only was this cafe vegan, but it was raw vegan. They offer monthly cooking classes there and the one they were having that month sounded too good to resist to me. We signed up for a class.

After that class, I’ve never felt the same about cooked food. Always in the back of my mind, I think, “I could be eating raw.” I just don’t enjoy grains or baked goods they way I used to. I’ve learned so much about the world of raw foods, I feel so enlightened. There was this whole other world of food I was totally missing! I’ve taken two other classes since then at the same place and I plan to take another. I’ve gotten some incredible recipes. I was also inspired to go to the library to pick up some cook books by Ani Phyo (who is awesome, by the way). Now experimenting with raw foods is an entirely new adventure.

I honestly do feel the difference between energizing, living foods and cooked, overly starchy foods. Raw foods emphasizes raw vegetables and fruits, nuts and seeds, pickled and fermented vegetables, and fresh herbs and spices. I’m going to feature a lot more raw recipes on my blog so anyone can experience the benefits of raw food! I’m going to experiment with salad dressings, desserts, dehydrated goods, breads, etc. I’ve already made a pretty delicious raw fruit dip made of cashews, coconut oil, dates and some other delicious and nutrient dense foods.

I’m not ready to give up all cooked foods yet, but raw foods is definitely going to take over the majority of my diet!

Let me know how you feel about raw foods. Have you experienced any benefits? Have you never heard of raw foods? What do you think about raw foods? Do you prefer cooked over raw, raw over cooked? Tell me anything, or ask me anything!

vegan carob peanut butter waffle sandwhich

This recipe is soo simple. It makes an awesome breakfast and it’s something a little different from traditional waffles. I used to love making peanut butter waffle sandwiches with frozen waffles and this is a great alternative with a healthy (and chocolate!) vegan alternative with organic peanut butter and bananas.

Recipe:
1 cup whole wheat flour (I used buckwheat)
1 tsp baking powder
3 tablespoons carob powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp maple syrup or agave
1 cup coconut milk or other milk of choice (almond, rice, soy, etc)
2 tbsp oil (I used liquid coconut oil)
3 tbsp cacao nibs
organic peanut butter
1 banana
more cacao nibs
you’re also gonna need a waffle maker
Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl and then pour in the coconut milk, the oil, and maple syrup or agave and stir. Add in the cacao nibs and stir until it all comes together into a batter. Spray your waffle maker and drop about 2/3 cup of batter on the waffle maker (may vary depending on how big your waffle maker is). After you get a nice beautiful waffle, cut it in half and spread the desired amount of peanut butter on one side and add banana slices and cacao nibs.
Chocolate and peanut butter are two of my favorite things. You can really do a lot with this recipe. You could add vegan chocolate chips instead of nibs. You can use almond butter or cashew butter and you can even just eat the waffles with a little syrup or whatever!
I know the pictures aren’t great and there aren’t a lot but these are just pictures I already had on my phone and the one was from instagram! If people are actually interested in any of the recipes in the future I will definitely take more time and effort into photographing them.

Yummy green smoothie

This is a recipe for a great green smoothie to jumpstart your morning. I like to have smoothies like this for breakfast or sometimes as a snack after a workout.

Recipe:

1/2 cup coconut water

1 cup water

1 loosely packed cup of organic spinach

1 loosely packed cup of lettuce of your choice

1 banana

1/2 pineapple

1 tsp of agave or maple syrup

1/2 tbsp of hemp powder

1 tsp of flax seeds

Just add all this to your blender, blend until smooth and enjoy! You can add more or less of any of the ingredients listed or add in other fruits or vegetables to really make it your own ❤