Vegan Recipes from Sakara Life

Classic Banana Bread with Vanilla-Tahini Butter

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Ingredients (Makes 12 slices):

For the banana bread

  • 1 tablespoon flaxseed meal
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin coconut oil, melted, plus more for the pan
  • 3 medium-ripe bananas, mashed (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup coconut palm sugar
  • 3 tablespoons raw honey
  • 3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/4 cups almond meal
  • 1 1/2 cups oat flour
  • 1 1/2 cups gluten-free oats
  • 3/4 cup almonds, finely chopped
  • 1 cup hazelnuts, finely chopped

For the vanilla-tahini butter

  • 1 cup store-bought organic pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup tahini
  • 2 tablespoons wildflower honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Himalayan salt, to taste


  1. Make the banana bread: In a small bowl, stir together the flaxseed meal with 2 tablespoons of water. Allow the mixture to sit for 2 minutes to thicken slightly.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Lightly grease an 8 by 4 1/2 inch loaf pan with oil and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together the bananas, vanilla, oil, sugar, honey, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and flaxseed meal-water mixture. Add the almond meal, flour, and oats. Stir until combined. Fold in the almonds and hazelnuts.
  4. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake for 1 hour, or until the bread feels firm and the top has turned golden brown and is slightly cracked. If the bread starts to brown too quickly, cover with foil and continue baking. 
  5. Make the vanilla-tahini butter: In a food processor or blender, combine the pumpkin, tahini, honey, and vanilla with a pinch of salt and blend until smooth.
  6. Enjoy the bread warm, slathered with the tahini butter and a tiny sprinkle of salt. Store leftovers in the fridge—the bread for up to 3 days, the tahini for up to 5. This bread also freezes well. Wrap the loaf in foil and a freezer-safe plastic bag and store in the freezer for up to 2 months.


Taco Salad with Walnut “Chorizo”

taco_saladFrom Eat Clean Play Dirty: Recipes for a Body and Life You Love (Sakara Life)

We make our taco salad with classic flavors, including homemade pico de gallo (though you could also buy a fresh version from the grocery store), but the star is the spicy walnut “chorizo” that’s flavorful and satisfying. Walnuts are a source of omega-3 fatty acids, which nourishes the brain and keeps hormones vibrant and in balance. Plus, with fiber-rich black beans and liver-detoxifying cilantro, this dinner is a delicious way to support the microbiome. You can serve this dish as is or add a stack of warm corn tortillas and reimagine as tacos. 

Ingredients (Serves 4):

Pico de Gallo

4 Roma Tomatoes, diced

1 large shallot, minced

2 scallions (white and green parts), thinly sliced

2 cloves garlic, minced

¼ to ½ jalapeno (depending on how much heat you like), seeded and minced

4 sprigs fresh cilantro, eaves chopped

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

Juice of 1 lime

Himalayan salt

Walnut “Chorizo”:

1 cup raw walnuts

1 teaspoon chili powder

1 teaspoon smoked paprika 

½ teaspoon ground cumin

2 teaspoons tamari soy sauce

2 teaspoons fresh lime juice

1 teaspoon wildflower honey

Himalayan salt

Salad Base:

2 avocados, pitted and peeled

Himalayan salt

1 cup, cooked and canned black beans, rinsed and drained

Juice of 1 lemon

12 cups mixed greens

2 cups shredded cabbage

8 sprigs fresh cilantro, leaves picked

¼ cup pumpkin seeds

Lime wedges, for serving


Make the pico de gallo: In a medium bowl, combine the tomatoes, shallot, scallions, garlic, jalapeño, and cilantro and toss with the oil, lime juice, and a pinch of salt. Let the mixture marinate while you make the “chorizo” and the salad.

Make the “chorizo”: In a food processor, combine all the ingredients with a pinch of salt and process until the mixture begins to stick to itself but isn’t totally smooth. Set aside. 

Assemble the salad: In a small bowl, mash the avocados with a pinch of salt.

In another small bowl, toss the black beans with the lemon juice and a pinch of salt. 

Divide the greens and cabbage among 4-large plates. Top with the pico de gallo (juices and all), black beans (make sure to include some of the lemon juice), crumbles of the walnut “chorizo,” and the avocado smash. Garnish with the cilantro leaves and pumpkin seeds and serve with lime wedges. 


Summer BBQ Recipes

Check out some amazing recipes to try this Summer from a few of our HealthKick partners, from main dishes, delicious sides to dessert! Let us know in the comments below which ones you’re going to try!

Greek Bison Burger

Screen Shot 2020-06-22 at 10.15.17 AMImage and Recipe from ButcherBox

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3 Nutrition Tips for Social Distancing

By Beth Lipton, Health Coach

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You don’t need me to tell you how stressful the situation we’re in now is. We’re all living with it and coping as best we can. What we eat has the power to ease or exacerbate our stress, so here are a few strategies to help keep you well and calm.

Watch out for stress eating: I’ve seen a lot of talk around social media about stress eating, and it’s completely understandable why this is happening—especially if you’re bored, which can make it even worse. If you’ve been stress eating, no judgment. We’re just at the beginning of this quarantine, so it’s the best time to get yourself set up with healthy habits. The best defense against stress eating is noticing when you’re doing it (or, ideally, when you’re about to do it). Every time you go to eat something outside of meal times, ask yourself, “Am I hungry?” Check in with how your body is feeling. If you are hungry, note the sensations in your body, how your stomach feels (and if you’re truly hungry, have a snack—something with vegetables, protein and healthy fat, like sliced vegetables with a hard-boiled egg). If you’re not sure, or you find you aren’t actually hungry, engage yourself in an activity that isn’t eating. I recommend making a list of tasks you’ve been wanting to accomplish for a while and referring to it in these moments, instead of turning to TV or social media, which invite snacking. Clean out a closet, FaceTime a friend or loved one, organize some area of your home. Engage in something that requires your brain and ideally your hands, too. 

Eat nourishing foods. You know that to stay well, you need foods that are good for you, with plenty of nutrients. Eat plenty of vegetables, healthy fats and protein—grass-fed beef, pastured poultry and eggs, wild-caught fish. If you don’t eat animal protein, whole grains and beans in combination are fine. Avoid snack foods like chips and puffs (even organic ones, and ones that say they have a serving of vegetables), and really watch out for sweets. A little something is fine, like a piece of dark chocolate. But sugar is an enemy to your immune system, and none of us needs that right now. If you’re “corona baking,” stick to recipes that sweeten with fruit like bananas, apples and dates, or that rely on just a touch of natural sweetener like maple syrup or honey. Utilize recipes that are lower in empty carbs like white flour. (Shameless plug: I post recipes like this free all the time on my Instagram.) Not only will sticking to whole, nourishing foods help you stay well, you’ll also feel so. Much. Better. 

Order in sometimes… but have it steamed. I’m in favor of supporting restaurants by ordering in some meals right now. Your best bet is to order your food steamed and add your own seasonings/sauces. Restaurants often use low-quality vegetable oils, because they’re less expensive—but those oils are highly inflammatory to the body and can leave you feeling sluggish and bloated. It’s not as sexy getting food delivered that’s steamed, but it can make a real difference in how you feel—plus, you want to avoid unnecessary inflammation as much as possible while we’re all vulnerable. We all know to avoid processed foods—you’ll be hard-pressed to find one more processed than vegetable oils. Avoid them whenever you can, starting with takeout.

I hope these tips are helpful to you, and that you stay well and safe throughout the crisis.

– Beth Lipton, Health Coach


Make Your January Reset Fun


There are so many “New Year, new you” articles and offers out there at this time of year. The message: Your New Year’s resolution should be some kind of drastic change to your life.

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