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Interview with Lindsay Nixon! Part 2

If you didn’t catch part 1, you can check it out here.

The winner of “Every Day Happy Herbivore” is (by random drawing) Jill! She said “This is my first holiday season since being introduced to a plant-strong way of life by the healthy eating specialist at my local Whole Foods. Curtis showed us how to make a yummy raw apple pie with a date-nut crust, and I brought that to Thanksgiving. I’m looking forward to delving into both of your cookbooks!! Thanks for the recipes!”

Congrats to Jill, not just on winning, but on becoming plant-strong!

You can still enter to win a copy of Lindsay’s new cookbook by commenting on this post, just tell us your favorite plant-strong meal!

Now, on to the interview and more recipes!

Theresa asked: 2 questions: (1) does she have a great cream of mushroom soup (ala almond milk)? (2) From plant-based eater to cookbook goddess, what’s in her near future that we can look forward to?

Linsday: I have a Skillet Green Bean Casserole recipe on happyherbivore.com. Leave off the green beans and you have a cream of mushroom soup and second, you make me blush. I’m writing my third cookbook now. I’ll also be the celebrity chef at a McDougall immersion in Feb and co-hosting an E2 potluck in Austin with Rip (and hopefully Natala!) this March.
Libby asked: Favorite foods/dishes high in iron? (I’ve been plant strong for about 1 1/2 months and have had really dark bluish circles under my eyes a few days here and there… Any clues to what else I might be missing?)

Lindsay: Iron is tricky. According to whfoods.com, If you take your iron with vitamin C, your body will absorb it better. However, if you take your iron with calcium, some research suggests this impairs the absorption. This is further complicated because many iron-rich foods, naturally contain calcium also. Iron, however, should be taken seriously so talk to your Dr, get blood work and make sure you are not anemic or have another condition. My sister was anemic as an omni, and now is anemic being plant-strong. Diet alone has not been able to help my sister. That said iron-rich foods: soy beans (edamame), lentils, spinach, tofu, sesame seeds, chickpeas, lima beans, olives and many more. See whfoods.com for a complete list.
Cheri asked: I also love the cookbook, but I am having some trouble with the baked goods. For example, with the banana bread and pumpkin bread, I am leaving them in the oven until the skewer comes out clean (about 70 minutes in my oven), but they are still very (too) moist in the center. I could leave them in longer, but they are getting very, very brown on the outside, even with the foil tent. Any thoughts about what I am doing wrong or how I might modify the recipe? Actually, since there is not egg in the breads, I still enjoy eating them without concern about doneness, but my family is not as flexible as I am.

Lindsay: Do you have an oven thermometer to confirm the temp in your oven (my oven runs cool — which means even though I turn it to 350, it’s actually only 320 in the oven), sometimes that is the culprit. If your oven temp is fine, you could also try a lower temp for longer. Also make sure you’re using a metal pan, NOT glass.
Ginto asked: How does one get a burger or loaf to stick together and not crumple apart.

Lindsay: You can use vital wheat gluten, it’s a great binder, but often it’s in the prep and shaping. I have a video on happyherbivore.com for how to shape bean burgers so they don’t fall apart and with loaves, you really have to pack those suckers down in there tight pre-baking.
Keri  asked: I started a vegan lifestyle 2 months ago and I love it. But I’ve noticed that my fingernails are more brittle and I wonder if this is a correlation? And if so, how do I make sure I’m getting all my nutrients. My thyroid is fine according to recent blood work…which also showed high LDL, but I’m working on that.

Lindsay: Have Dr do a blood workup to see if you’re deficient in anything, or start taking a vegan multi-vitamin to be sure. You can also consult with a nutritionist or RD about what you’re eating, to make sure you’re getting all your nutrients — or do it yourself with an informative book like Julieanna Heaver’s Plant-Based Nutrition book. Interestingly,  I had the reverse happen — hair and nails got stronger. Hope yours get stronger soon!
Dawn asked: I am a vegan and sensitive to wheat (I am finding this is a common allergy), so I try not to eat too much of it. If a recipe calls for seitan, what could I substitute? Also, if a recipe calls for flour (e.g. pumpkin, zucchini bread or cupcakes, etc) what type of gluten free flour could I use as a substitute? Finally, please recommend a delicious gluten free tortilla or lavash for my burritos and wraps. PS: I would love it if gluten free substitutes were included in the recipes. Thanks!

Lindsay: There is a great GF substitute for vital wheat gluten here. 

As for baking, just use a GF all purpose flour blend (I have a recipe for GF flour blend in my new cookbook) or try oat flour. My friend that is Celiacs uses brown rice tortillas. I think she gets them at Trader Joes. Also, both books are more than 60% GF, and most recipes have suggestions for making it GF.
Katie asked: Lindsay, how did you find vegan restaurants when you travelled through Europe this summer? Many vegan restaurants use oil in their foods, what suggestions do you have for finding foods without oil when traveling?

Lindsay: I did some online research before hand to find any veg restaurants in the cities I was going to, I also asked the tourist information office when I got there, or just browsed menus and asked about ingredients (I speak French and Spanish, and a little German in addition to English. I also had a pocket translator to assist with food words). I always tell them no oil, but I find they don’t love their oil as much over there. Even in Italy, most foods didn’t seem to have oil on them. It was on the table, like salt is in America, but the food didn’t come swimming in oil. I was constantly impressed.

How about some new recipes?

Quick Burgers | makes 4

I developed these burgers in a hotel room: they’re quick, easy and require very few ingredients. (In fact, except for the beans and a seasoning packet, I sourced all the ingredients from the complimentary “breakfast bar”). I make these burgers any time I need a super fast meal or I’m really low on ingredients.

15-oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
2 tbsp ketchup
1 tbsp yellow mustard
1 tsp onion powder (granulated)
1 tsp garlic powder (granulated)
1/3 c instant oats

Preheat oven to 400F. Grease a cookie sheet or line with parchment paper and set aside. In a mixing bowl, mash black beans with a fork until mostly pureed but still some half beans and bean parts are left. Stir in condiments and spices until well combined. Then mix in oats. Divide into 4 equal portions and shape into thin patties with your hands. Bake for 7 minutes, carefully flip over and bake for another 7 minutes, or until crusty on the outside. Slap into a bun with extra condiments and eat!

Chef’s note: If you only have rolled oats, chop them up in a food processor or blender so they are smaller and more like instant oats. Rolled oats left whole tend to make the burgers fall apart.

Per Burger: 109 Calories, 0.5g Fat, 17.6g Carbohydrates, 3g Fiber, 2.2g Sugars, 5g Protein


Spicy Orange Greens | serves 2

The slightly spicy orange sauce in this dish is one of my favorites. You can serve it with any greens you like or have on hand, but collard greens are my favorite to use. For a complete meal, serve over or tossed with noodles.

1/3 cup water
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp minced fresh ginger
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tbsp orange marmalade or jam
4 cups greens (any)

Pour water, soy sauce, ginger and red pepper flakes into a skillet. Turn heat to high and saute until the ginger is fragrant, about 1 minute. Whisk in marmalade and then add chopped greens. Reduce heat to medium and using tongs, turn greens into the sauce. This will help cook the greens down; stop when your greens are bright green and have softened. Serve.

Chef’s Note: Cooked broccoli florets may be substituted for the greens. Toss cooked broccoli with the sauce once it’s been warmed and serve.

Per Serving: 156 Calories, 1.5g Fat, 32g Carbohydrates, 8.8g Fiber, 11.6g Sugars, 10.1g Protein


Sage Gravy | makes 1 1/2 cups

Good over greens, mashed potatoes, faux chicken—anything really. This is my latest go-to gravy.

1/2 cup vegetable broth
1/2 cup nondairy milk
1 tbsp rubbed sage (not powdered)
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
2 tbsp white whole wheat flour
1/4 tsp garlic powder (granulated)
1/4 tsp onion powder (granulated)
1/4 tsp liquid smoke
dash paprika
1 lemon wedge (juice of)
pinch salt
black or white pepper

Whisk all ingredients together in a medium pot, taking care to rub the sage between your fingers to break it down into smaller bits, especially if your brand is a little rustic with bigger leaves and stick pieces (pull out those sticks if you can). Squeeze the juice out of your lemon wedge completely, and discard the rind. Bring gravy to near boil over high heat but just before it boils, immediately turn off the heat and remove the pot to a non-hot burner, stirring it. Taste, adding black or white pepper and salt as desired.

Chef’s Note: Brown rice flour may be substituted for a gluten-free option.

Per Serving (1/4 cup): 29 Calories, 0.3g Fat, 4.7g Carbohydrates, 1.2g Fiber, 1.2g Sugar, 2.6g Protein

We want to thank Lindsay for taking the time to answer so many of your questions! We hope that everyone picks up “Every Day Happy Herbivore“!

And lastly,  for those of you on twitter, join us Wednesday December 21st for a plant-strong Holiday party on twitter! Your hosts will be Engine 2, Lindsay Nixon from Happy Herbivore and Julieanna Hever, “The Plant Based Dietitian”!

We will get the party started at 7pm EST. Be sure to follow all of  us @engine2diet , @happyherbivore and @PlantDietitian on twitter. We will be answering your questions, giving tips and having a whole lot of plant-strong fun! We might even do a few giveaways!

About the author

Engine 2 Team
The Engine 2 Team is dedicated to helping you become plant-strong! Each of us are on the plant-strong journey right along side of you!

60 Responses to “Interview with Lindsay Nixon! Part 2”

  1. The holiday party sounds like a blast.

    And on the travel tips – such a good question – we are finding ourselves all over the globe several times a year and it’s been easy to find what we need in markets and throw some beautiful simple meals together in the house where we are staying. There is access to incredible produce in Italy – open markets are not hard to find. Easy to get pasta (even whole grain) and brown rice along with oatmeal. Great balsamic is easy to find, and marinara sauce as well. So if you have access to even a simple kitchen, you can easily manage your plant-strong eats!

    Here’s some thing I threw together at the farmhouse in Tuscany where we were for a week last spring:

    Savory Summer vegetables La Spinosa:
    http://www.lanimuelrath.com/recipes/savory-summer-veggies-la-spinosa-recipe/

    Lani

  2. Sonya says:

    My husband and I (in our late 50′s and early 60′s) recently adopted a wee baby – a family member. That spurred us on to find all the ways we could ensure that we’d be healthy enough to raise her to adulthood. Your cookbook was the first one we bought and the first fat-free vegan recipes we tried. They were such a hit we felt that this way of living was something we could indeed do, and maybe even enjoy it! Thank you Lindsay!

  3. Amanda says:

    I have recently transitioned to a plant strong diet, and my favorite recipe is a Kale, sweet potato, and black bean dish. There is some lime juice and coconut added to the dish at the end, which makes the flavors something you want to savor in your mouth. Whenever I eat this, I am so proud of myself for eating something that is so delicious and also uses so many whole plant based foods.
    http://healthygirlskitchen.blogspot.com/2011/11/quinnys-sri-lankan-kale-with-black.html

  4. Jill says:

    I love Lindsey and Happy Herbivore! She has made my husband’s and my transitions to low-fat, plant-based eating so much easier and enjoyable. Thanks!!!

  5. Liana says:

    I can’t wait to try the burgers! Simple is what it’s all about during this busy holiday season!

  6. Amy says:

    I’ve been struggling with plant strong for over a year, but recently committed to it 100%. I’m really trying to get my family on board with it too. My biggest struggle is recipes and so I am really hoping I get your cook book for Christmas!! Thanks for your inspiration!

  7. Jennae hunter says:

    Thanks so much E2 for introducing me to HH!! We switched to a vegan / plant strong diet in september. I get a little “stuck” sometimes and am looking forward to trying some new recipes!!! I have 4 kids and a husband, and they have been great about adapting this new lifestyle … Though some of my fishes have been complete flops! Haha. Thanks again !!!

  8. Cathey says:

    I love Happy Herbivore teaming up with E2! My two favorites.

  9. Diana says:

    I can’t wait to try the spicy orange greens! Thanks again for great tips in interview part 2!

  10. The Kale Kids says:

    We LOVE the Happy Herbivore website. One of our favortie recipies is “Pumpkin Pie Smoothie”. It’s so filling! We have the “Happy Herbivore Cookbook” already, it’s great! Hoping to get “Everyday Happy Herbivore” soon!

  11. Dina says:

    I have both Happy Herbivore and recently picked up EHH – love them both and really enjoy all the recipes we’ve tried – the molasses cookies in EHH are AWESOME and we can’t get enough of your Hippie Loaf (ate it last night again!)
    What I really enjoy are the sauces and gravies you create – they taste incredible especially the Cheesy Cheddar Sauce, I toss it with whole wheat pasta and veggies. My hubby commented on how much it tastes like a real cheese sauce.
    Thanks for making our transition to a plant based diet so easy and delicious!

  12. Stephanie says:

    I just love the simplicity of Lindsay’s recipes. Easy. Healthy. Delicious. That’s a winning combination in my book. And those burgers! On the menu for tonight! Thanks E2 for all you do for us.

  13. Bev says:

    My favorite plant-strong meal is whatever it takes to look like the girl in the picture! :-)

  14. Aaron! says:

    I could say more about Lindsay but probably said enough yesterday. Great interview segments. So, on to the point, my favorite ‘meal’…hippie loaf (p.144 HHC), plain mashed potatoes, skillet green beans (but with baked onion rings p.176 HHC), broiled carrots, ‘easy, fabulous corn salad’ (p.144 P&RHD). It’s a lot of food but great combination and colors. HH and E2 is a match made in kitchen!

  15. Marsha Koepp says:

    I got a lot of good information and suggestions from this interview! My favorite plant strong meal is a recipe I created for Green Chile Spinach and Mushroom Enchiladas. Everyone to whom I serve this dish says “This is my new favorite meal!” We have never enjoyed cooking and eating more in our lives than we do on our plant strong diet! We appreciate all of you who are involved in providing us with more delicious recipes.

  16. Can the quick burgers be made ahead of time and frozen before cooking?

  17. MW says:

    Still learning my way around the plant strong diet but experiencing great effects in just 2 months!!!

  18. Lynnette says:

    Watching FOK this summer at our little independent theater in little ole Muskegon led me to you and Happy Herbivore. It is a wonderful and delicious journey. There are so many wonderful flavors it is hard to choose. Those black bean burgers are awesome!!!

  19. Cathy says:

    My favorite meal is bean tacos.

  20. Monique says:

    Favorite plant strong meal by far is portabello mushroom burgers!

  21. Lauren says:

    Favorite plant-strong breakfast: oatmeal with fresh cranberries cooked into it!
    Lunch: a Japanese sweet potato, held and eaten “burrito style” with hot sauce dripped on before each bite
    Dinner: my own creation, a lentil and veggie curry over brown rice.

  22. Andrea says:

    Love the Happy Herbivore cookbook and would love to get my hands on her new cookbook. My favorite plant-strong recipe is lasagna made with zuchini and quinoa.

  23. I am just starting this plant strong journey and I am SO happy to have such wonderful mentors. Thanks to Lindsay and the folks at E2 for constantly educating and sharing ! I made Happy Herbivore Enchilada Bake last night…… BOY do I love how quick, easy and delicious Lindsay’s recipes are! As a former Weight Watcher, her calorie count keeps me on track as well. Would LOVE the cookbook so I can keep cooking new and wonderful meals! :)

  24. Teresa says:

    My favorite is the chana masala that I got from Lindsey’s web site. I would so love to own her cookbook. Thanks!

  25. John says:

    my daily lunch is my favorite meal :pb&j (smuckers natural pb and smuckers fruit spread) sandwich on ezekiel bread and a banana.

  26. Debbie says:

    My favorite plant strong meal is Mushroom Stroganoff yummy. It just so happens that also have loved everything I have made from the Happy Herbivore website, especially the Apple Crisp Muffins which were a huge hit at a reason family Christmas Party. My husband’s cousin demanded the recipe b/c her 1 year old loved them so much :-)

  27. Connie says:

    LOVE the eggless salad Lindsay has! We eat it all the time for lunches. YUM! My husband never liked egg salad (before we went plant-strong) but he loves this, and asks me to make it often. Thanks to Lindsay, for being so down-to-earth, and for such easy meals!

  28. Nancy Goodman says:

    would love to win one although I already have your book, but want to send one to my daughter! Love the “Crab” cakes! and so did everyone that sampled them. Making more tomorrow! Didn’t have any left but can you freeze them? Just curious….

  29. SherriFL says:

    I started my plant based diet in Feb and have been going strong and totally reversed my terrible blood work! I am SOLD and love the food.

    My favorite plant based meal is something I call Swiss Chard Melody. I saute onions and garlic then add chopped zucchini, stems of swiss chard, carrots (any other veggie I have on hand). Stir fry it until done to your liking. At very end I add torn swiss chard and balsamic vinegar and toss until wilted but not soggy. Put over veggie pasta, rice, or quinoa! Oh sooo yummy!

  30. Abby says:

    I rarely ate beans before I went vegan 2+ months ago, and already they are a daily staple in my diet. I actually crave black beans and garbanzo beans now, which I never would have believed. In fact, I eat a way bigger variety of foods now then in the last 3 years of being a vegetarian. Mexican lasagna is a healthy favorite now.

    Tangent / weak simile: Cheese is like that kid in school who is charismatic but comes from a bad home so they want you all to themself. Glad to have made new friends who have my best interest at heart!

  31. Janet M says:

    Keep those great blogs and recipes coming our way! Hugs and Merry Christmas.

  32. Denise Welsh says:

    Again, it is simple. It is all good.

  33. Dan says:

    Gluten-free cheese-less pizza or chickpea burgers.

  34. karen says:

    I love Happy Herbivore. We’re giving at least 3 as Christmas gifts this year. I’m looking forward to seeing what’s inside the Everyday Happy Herbivore.

  35. Mary Kate says:

    Like the other winner Jill, this is also my first holiday season on a plant-based diet and I am so looking forward to finding out new recipes for the holiday season (and hopefully show my family how amazing a plant based diet can be!)… my favorite plant-strong meal is the meal I made for thanksgiving: HH hippie loaf, roasted butternut squash and sweet potatoes with cinnamon, and the HH apple biscuits!

  36. Xanthe says:

    My favorite meal is just a simple create-my-own veggie/grain bowl. Depending on what I have on hand, I just throw a little of everything in there and add my favorite seasonings: brown rice, sweet potato/yam, brussel sprouts, tomato, green onion, kale or lettuce, various peppers, squash, zucchini, etc are some of my favorites, topped with Braggs, hot sauce, red wine vinegar, or something like that.

  37. Aaron says:

    As a new vegan, I went from bacon smothered in cheese, to whole foods and plant based eating. Lindsay and E2 are making the transition easy. I am realizing I don’t have to settle with pasta and veggies for every meal. Thanks to all of you!

  38. Andrea says:

    I LOVE veggie stir-fry with tofu! I can switch it up or throw in whatever I have in the fridge.

  39. dorothy mora says:

    it always comes back to the most basic of meals- tofu with well prepared brown rice and sauteed veggies. sounds too simple, but brings me back to when i adopted this diet..1980!

  40. Anne Casagrande says:

    I’m pretty new at this so almost every time I try a new recipe I have a new favorite. I really like the Pad Thai in the E2 Book. I really liked the Apple Crisp Muffin on HH site. I don’t own the cookbooks yet but hope to soon.

  41. Jude says:

    I need HH’s cookbook! Spent too much of today eating crap food at my class’s school party….ugh!

  42. Jill says:

    Thank you! I’m so excited to have won your cookbook!! Even though I’m eating better than my former fast food junkie self, I’m still relying too much on processed foods. I have one other cookbook with plant-strong recipes, the recipes from the Engine 2 book, access to recipes on the Whole Foods website, and — now — EHH (if it’s too late to ask for your 1st book for my birthday or Christmas, I’ll definitely buy it myself). I have NO excuses for lazing out and relying on what other people/companies make.

    • Jill says:

      P.S. I meant asking my family about the gift of the 1st book. I didn’t want you to think I was being greedy. We always wait until the last minute to check in with each other, so it’s nice to actually have something to tell them I’d love to have.

  43. Mirkat says:

    My husband makes an awesome chana masala that I am semi-obsessed with. :)

  44. Julia Silka says:

    In 1991 I gave up pork and red meat as my New Years resolution. It was easier than I thought, so in 1992 I gave up all poultry (partly because I couldn’t be trusted to eat it responsibly — aka KFC). That makes me a fish-a-terian (also lacto-ovo) for 2o years now.
    I read The China Study this past October. Then I read the E2Diet and the 30-Day Vegan Challenge. I quit the animal products cold turkey. What’s nuts is I lost 5 pounds in three weeks! My New Years resolution is to officially go Vegan in 2012.

  45. Katharina says:

    What I love most to eat is any kind of soup or stew. I really find them comforting in the winter and make 2 pots most weeks!

  46. Lora Loring says:

    I just read the China Study and have committed to plant-strong eating. I love the blog recipes I’ve tried thus far… Sweet potato dal has been my fave. I love that eating this way haas felt so fresh and healthy. And it tastes so good too. Thanks for all that all if you so to bring this info to us.

  47. Linda says:

    Thanks for all the wonderful info you have shared here and through FB. I’m excited to try your recipes!

  48. Jackie Smith says:

    I have so many favorite meals…one favorite lately is The Healthy Librarian’s cheezy savory oats. The slight spice really wakes up my tastebuds on these cold mornings.

  49. Roxanne says:

    Cookbook goddess. Perfect description!

  50. jean says:

    Thanks for an easy burger recipe!
    I make a big batch of whole wheat couscous with vegetable broth, chopped onions, celery, carrots, peppers, mushrooms and pinenuts. It’s a great cold salad to have on hand for meals or between meal snacks.

  51. Martha says:

    Can’t wait to try the quick burger recipe! Love those black beans! Today listened to you (Lindsay) on the Vegcast podcast – really sympathize w/you on the militant vegan issue….

    • Martha says:

      Tried the burgers last nite – very good! My husband liked them too. I think the ketchup makes them a bit salty and sweet – do you think using tomato paste would work? (Not that you can find that at a breakfast bar…!) Yummy – I will definitely have them again- nice and quick besides great.

  52. Suzanne says:

    My favorite meal is black bean soup.

  53. Heather McFarland says:

    I am going to try the Quick Burgers. YUM! I’m looking for recipes that are vegan and very cheap to make.

  54. Teslaca says:

    I love big salads with all sorts of veggies on top of greens. Sometimes with beans or tofu as well. Definitely my favorite plant-based meal and one I have almost every day.

  55. Sheri Rettig says:

    Thanks for the great interview. I make something from HH or EHH every day. Big thanks to Engine 2 for all the recipes available. We loved our first plant strong turkey day.

  56. Jill says:

    I know everyone’s busy with the holidays, but I just wanted to check in about the copy of Lindsay’s book that I won. I don’t want to be a pest, but I wanted to make sure you weren’t waiting on any info from me. I’m the Jill who made the raw apple pie for Thanksgiving (not the Jill who’s transitioning to a plant-strong lifestyle with her husband). Thanks, and Happy New Year!!

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