World Vegan Day 🌼

Today is World Vegan Day, an annual event celebrated by Vegans all over the world. The event was established in 1994 by Louise Wallis, then Chair of The Vegan Society in the United Kingdom, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the founding of the organisation and the coining of the terms “vegan” and “veganism”.


In the beginning, The Muscle Bakery wasn’t a reaction to any culinary changes but more of a personal development in the way I saw food. However, as my clientele developed and my skills improved, the demand began evolving and I was catering to the needs of my customers as well as developing my own cooking/ baking style.

The request for Vegan food has grown incredibly over the past few years, and even more so in the last year. When I began, my Vegan customers were a very select amount. But now it seems to be the other way around which is actually surreal to see; the way our culinary culture has changed.

With the growth of knowledge, we are all becoming more conscious of the world around us and it’s up to us to change that. So in contrast to when we began, we have developed with these changes, becoming an exclusively veggie friendly bakery.

We have also completely removed plastic bags and looking into veggie friendly packaging and labels.

We also offer a discount to all customers when they return their plastic containers or bring their own bags.


Everyone’s little efforts, make a big difference.


DID YOU KNOW:


A person showering for 2 months uses up the same amount of water that it takes to produce enough livestock for one beef burger.

Broccoli has a higher protein content per calorie than beef.

Every minute, 7 million pounds of excrement are produced by animals raised for food in the US.

Plastic is the only existing material that CANNOT break down naturally.

There is officially so much plastic in the world that any fish we eat, by default also contains plastic.

If every human skipped just ONE meal of chicken per week, environmental effects would be like removing 500,000 cars off the road.

82% of starving children live in countries where food is grown to feed animals in the west.

Brad Pitt, Beyoncé, Ellen Degeneres, Liam Hemsworth, Alicia Silverstone, Jennifer Lopez, Pamela Anderson, Alec Baldwin and Bill Clinton are vegans.


To celebrate this day, we have put together a collection of our best Vegan recipes to inspire you guys; to show that eating Vegan (& veggie) is also super fun and tasty (and not just about eating leaves and carrot sticks).


VANILLA WAFFLES

Vanilla Pancakes


Say yes to waffles with this tasty vanilla flavour waffle, topped with soy yoghurt, cookies, fresh berries and zero syrup.


BLUEBERRY SLICES


Imagine if you married up a cookie, a scone and a cake… this is what our Blueberry Slices are like.


COFFEE COCONUT TRUFFLES


Coffee and coconut? imma go and say yes my friends. Soft truffle centre made w/ coconut flour, infused with instant coffee and coated in luxurious dark chocolate.


CHOC BROWNIES


Fudgey brownies to brighten the day. Using Soy yogurt as a secret ingredient, a recipe to make over and over again.


CHEESY NACHOS


Cheesy nachos without the cheese? C’est pas posible. Thanks to the use of nutritional yeast, make any tortilla your b**tch and make them into badass nachos.


FLAPJACKS


Flapjacks are usually laden with butter, not these tho. With added peanut butter… theres nothing to not love!


GOJI HOB NOBS

Goji Hob Nobs


Hob Nobs minus the gluten and the buttah + added health from the goji berries. Give them a whirl.


PROTEIN PANCAKES

protein pancakes


These pancakes are so tasty, it fooled all our non-vegan friends.


BBQ TOFU

bbq tofu


The easiest way to make tasty tofu, using bbq sauce and not much else! Pair it up in a salad or a spud for maximum taste bud party.


TOFU NUGGETS


Chicken nuggets is so last year, try these tofu nuggets instead.


VEGAN BANANA BREAD

vegan banana bread


Would you believe us if we said a can of pop can replace an egg? This recipe shows you how.


BASIC VEGAN PANCAKES


The simplest and tastiest pancakes you’re ever gonna make! A firm favourite amongst our followers.


We hope these recipes inspire you and remember: even if you swap ONE meal a day to a Vegan meal… you ARE making a difference.


Join us with your feedback #WorldVeganDay \ @themusclebakery \ @themusclebaker


For 20% off Bulkpowders use code: MUSCLEBAKERY20
For 5% off iHerb use code: JCB887


HAPPY VEGAN DAY 🌱

Treat or Treat? 👻

We made a post last year about Halloween, so this year we are gonna skip all that mumbo jumbo and head straight to the treats… no tricks. Its the best part of this holiday anyway, right?


Showcasing our favourite Halloween-ey treats that we’ve rustled up to date:


SPIDERWEB SMOOTHIE BOWL


Get in the Halloween mood with this easy to make smoothie bowl, decorated with yoghurt spiderweb!


FRANKENSTEIN PROTEIN POPS


These Frankenstein Pops are a firm favourite with the kiddos! Laced with peanut butter, decorated with chocolate and coloured in green… fun to make… and EAT!


VEGAN WITCH FINGERS


These Witch Fingers are made with all the healthiest ingredients, but full of all the scare!


FRANKENWEENY CUPCAKES


Try these Frankenweeny cupcakes…The cutest Halloween cupcakes you ever did see.


PROTEIN WORMS


Snack on these protein worms today. Lucky for you they are choc orange flavour!


WORMY MATCHA CAKE


Dont be spooked out by this Matcha cake, what you see ain’t really worms… but walnuts!


HOPE YOU ENJOYED OUR HALLOWEEN THEME RECIPES!


Don’t forget to tag us if you try any of these recipes, you can find us on all social media outlets @themusclebakery/ @themusclebaker


For 20% off Bulkpowders use code: MUSCLEBAKERY20
For 5% off iHerb use code: JCB887


HAPPY (HALLOWEENY) BAKING!

How to: Overnight Oats 🍨

Overnight oats became all the rage about 5 years ago, when all the health gurus were touting its awesomeness, flooding the blogosphere with grams of overflowing oat jar creations.

But, they weren’t wrong about the awesome part. There is a huge benefit in eating overnight oats (aside from the time-saving). As the oats soak overnight, their starches break down which improves digestibility. The soaking acts like a long cooking, which you won’t get from just heating them in the microwave or in a saucepan. (You’ll find that most people who suffer from digestive problems, find overnight oats much easier to stomach for this reason).

So, we are re-visiting this old craze because it’s a gem that needs to be revived!

(Not to mention all the crazy combos you can make with it!)

Here is our how to:


CHOOSE YOUR LAYERS
You are going to need a milk, a ground seed like flax or chia (or both), 30-40g oats, a filling like nut butter or jam, and fruit of choice. Extras include protein powder, yoghurt, syrups, nuts, seeds, chocolate chips (whatever you may fancy).


UPCYCLE YOUR OLD JARS
Save used jars for these overnight oats, not only do they look cool in a jar but you’re helping the environment too.

I love making them in almost over peanut butter jars as it soaks in all the hard to get to peanut butter that always gets left behind (or thrown away).


MIX IT UP
Add milk and ground seeds to your jar and mix, follow it with oats, peanut butter, jam, fruit, seeds and whatever else you may or may not wanna add. Give it a good swirl so that the oats are all soaking in the milk, helping give it a swirly pattern too!


LET IT SOAK
Leave in the fridge to soak overnight and bam. Ready to eat oats!


PEANUT BUTTER CHERRY OVERNIGHT OATS 🍒



Ingredients:
3/4 Cup Coconut Milk made w/ a tiny bit of protein powder to thicken up. Use whichever one suits your diet best.
1 Tsp Chia Seeds
1 Tsp Flaxseed Meal
25g Pip And Nut Maple Peanut Butter
1 (generous 🙄) squeeze of Bulkpowders Zero Maple Syrup
Handful of Waitrose frozen cherries
1 Savia Soy Yoghurt
1 Pack Quaker Oats GF Oats (30-40g Oats)

Method:
1. Pour milk, chia, flax and oats in your jar and roughly mix.
2. Add peanut butter, cherries and yoghurt + whatever else you want in there and again mix roughly.
3. Close your jar and leave overnight.
4. Enjoy the next day with a hot cuppa!



The beauty of this recipe is that you can make as many different creations as you like, so long as you follow the basic how to.


Look forward to seeing what combos you guys come up with! Don’t forget to tag us if you make them, we love to see. Find us on all social outlets @themusclebakery/ @themusclebaker 🙂


Fancy some creamy oats? Check out our How to: Make Creamy Oats


For 20% discount on Bulkpowders use code: MUSCLEBAKERY20 | 10% discount on iHerb using code: JCB887

All recipes created by The Muscle Bakery and subject to copyright.

How to: Make Savoury Oats 🍅

There are actually people out there who dont like oats or porridge. We, of course, are not them.

We truly believe that oats is an anytime of the day kinda meal so, to prove this theory, decided to have a whack at creating a savoury oat combo. The outcome was even better than we imaged it to be, it was SO SO good and much more filling than toast would’ve been!

(Not to mention all the added vitamins and minerals this combo brings!)

Naturally, we couldn’t wait to share it with you…

Here is our how to:


HEAT UP MILK WITH FLAVOURED STOCK
Choose your favourite milk, you will need 3/4 cup per serving and 1/4 cup of stock (for every 33g of oats approx). Pour it into a saucepan and move to the next step…


ADD YOUR FAVE HERBS AND SPICES
You can choose your favourite herbs and spices for this, keep it simple or as crazy as you prefer. (Scroll to bottom for exact recipe).


LET IT GET SOME FLAVA
Bring the milk, stock and herb mix to a boil, then add oats and 1tbsp flaxseed meal/ ground flaxseed.

We use packs of 33g Gluten-Free Quaker Oats so it will be approximately that much oats you will need if not using single packs.

Let it all simmer until the oats have soaked up most of the liquid and has formed into porridge texture.


PIMP IT UP
Pour into a bowl and add your toppings. We chose some smashed avo, tomatoes, black olives, grated vegan cheese, toasted sesame seeds and sprouts. (What happens when you can’t choose between avo toast and oats).


SMASHED AV-OATS



Ingredients:
1 Pack Gluten-Free Quaker Oats
1 Tbsp Flaxseed Meal/ ground Flaxseed
3/4 Cup Non-Dairy Milk (we used Alpro Coconut Milk)
1/4 Cup Veggie Broth, made with 1 Tbsp Marigold Vegan Bouillon Powder
1 Tbsp Nutritional Yeast
1/4 Tsp Turmeric
1/4 Tsp Smoked Paprika
1/4 Tsp Garlic Powder
1/4 Tsp Onion Powder
1/8 Tsp Chilli Flakes
Pinch of sea salt

Toppings:
1/2 Avocado
1 Small Tomato
1/2 Small can sliced black olives
25g Violife grated cheese
Handful Alfalfa Sprouts
Sprinkle of toasted Sesame seeds

Method:
1. Add milk, veggie broth, nutritional yeast and salt/ spices into a pan and bring to the boil.
2. Add oats and flaxseed and reduce heat, leave simmering until oats soak up most of the liquid and you achieve a porridge consistency.
3. Pour into a bowl and set aside.
4. Mash avocado with a little salt, lemon juice and garlic powder and scoop on top of oats.
5. Add the rest of your toppings.
6. Grab a spoon and enjoy!



Yields: 1 serving

Nutritional Info:
519 Cals | 29.4F | 54.1C (14.3g fiber, 6.3g sugars) | 15.7P

Vitamin A: 18.1 | Vitamin C: 30.4 | Calcium: 224 | Iron: 21

Free from Gluten, Wheat, Dairy, Egg & Vegan


MAS BUENO QUE EL PAN 😛


Look forward to seeing what savoury oat combos you guys come up with! Don’t forget to tag us if you make them, we love to see. Find us on all social outlets @themusclebakery/ @themusclebaker 🙂


Fancy some sweet oats? Check out our How to: Make Creamy Oats


For 20% discount on Bulkpowders use code: MUSCLEBAKERY20 | 10% discount on iHerb using code: JCB887

All recipes created by The Muscle Bakery and subject to copyright.

Vegan Banana Bread Pt.2

We mentioned not long ago that Banana Bread is possibly one of the most re-created recipes amongst the foodie realms… it is after all, where all over-ripened bananas are laid to rest. RIP spotty bananas. We created not one, but TWO awesome banana bread recipes back then, check that blogpost out here.


Now, months later and with some overly spotty bananas in hand, we decided to make some more. Except this time with a recipe upgrade:



VEGAN BANANA BREAD


Author: The Muscle Bakery.

Banana bread made with sparkling water?!! YUP!! We wondered if the recipe would work with sparkling water as we originally tried it with Coke Zero and it worked perfectly. Our curious selves had to try it out, and we are SO glad we did!

Ingredients

    3 Cups (Gluten-Free) Ground Rolled Oats
    0.5 Cup Granulated Sweetener of choice
    1 Tbsp Xanthan
    1 Cup Soya/ Coconut Yoghurt*
    1 Scoop Pea Protein Isolate**
    1 Scoop Vanilla Soy Protein
    2 Mashed Bananas
    1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
    1 Tbsp Agave Nectar (add more if you prefer a little sweeter)
    400ml Sparkling Water
    1 Tbsp Cinnamon (optional)
    1 Tsp Baking Powder
    1 Tsp Baking Soda
    1 Tsp Cider Vinegar
    Handful Dairy-Free Choc Chips (optional)
  • If you don’t have this, substitute with applesauce.
  • If you want to omit this or don’t have this ingredient, try adding a little bit more flour instead.
  • You will also need a metal loaf pan, not the silicone one.


Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 170 Degrees C.
  2. In a bowl mix together all your dry ingredients until combined. Then, fold in your wet ingredients until you get a thick batter.
  3. Prepare a greaseproof baking sheet in your loaf pan then pour mix into it.
  4. Bake for 30-40mins (until knife comes out clean when piercing it).
  5. Leave to cool completely before slicing.
  6. Then slice up and enjoy solo or with your fave nut butter!

Nutritional Info (per slice of 16): 121 Cals | 1.9F | 20.4C | 6.3P

Free from Gluten, Wheat, Sugar, Dairy, & Egg.


Don’t forget to tag us if you try any of these recipes, you can find us on all social media outlets @themusclebakery

For 15% discount on Bulkpowders use code: MUSCLEBAKERY15


HAPPY (BANANA BREAD) BAKING!

<3

Everyday, should be Pancake Day.

Pancake day is the equivalent of Valentine’s Day for us food fiends, a day where you are OFFICIALLY allowed to eat pancakes pretty much all day (not that we wouldn’t anyway).

Now, what is a pancake?

Quite simply, it’s a cake that you cook in a pan. What makes it so awesome? … IT’S A CAKE YOU COOK IN A PAN. DUH.

We trawled the internet to see what it had to say about pancakes and found this:

PANCAKE / Something you eat for breakfast. I had pancakes this morning.

However, not to be confused with:

PANCAKES / A life changing miracle of fluffy happiness man. So i had some pancakes today, it was so great, i gave my pants to a hobo.

 

Anyway, to celebrate such a phenomenal day we scoured our recipe archives and dug out our tastiest pancake creations AND made a new recipe (scroll to end for that one):


Vegan Pancakes

Vegan Pancakes_main

The pancakes are everything you want pancakes to be; soft, scrumptious, moist, tasty and filling. Top it with rich Vanilla Agave nectar and you have an absolute winner! Perfect for Vegans and Non-Vegans alike.


Easy Lemon Pancakes

Lemon Pancakes

This is our basic staple protein pancake recipe, easy to make with only a few key ingredients. No culinary skills required.


Spinach & Blueberry Pancakes

SpinachPancakes

Looking for something a little more adventurous? Try these Spinach pancakes topped with blueberries! Don’t be put off by their green colour, they are super delicious and extra nutritious. Eating pancakes and getting your greens in at the same time, whats not to love?


Simple Pancakes with Choc Sauce (Dairy-Free)

Simple Pancakes MAIN

Anyone looking for a Dairy-Free pancake option, look no further. These delicious pancakes with a rich choc sauce topping will hit the spot! (Sharing will be the only problem).


Chocolate Pancakes (Low-Carb)

LowCarbPancakes

Similar to our basic protein pancake recipe, except using ground almonds instead of oats making them perfect for those on lower carb diets. Have them simple or topped with your fave sauces or nut butters.


Protein Waffles (i.e. pancakes with abs)

Waffles Header

What happens when your pancakes go to the gym? They become waffles. (Just like these damn fine Strawberry Vanilla Waffles.)


Banoffee Pancakes

banoffeepancakes

Pancakes, Banana and Toffee rolled into one epic stack of pancake porn with a whopping protein content of almost 50g. *Gym buffs rejoice*


Cookie Protein Waffles (more pancakes with abs)

waffleoreo

These pancakes also went to the gym to get its pump on, and met sexy oreo there… and well… Oreo Cookie Protein Waffle was born…


Pancake Cake

PancakeCake

PANCAKE CAKE!!! Layers of chocolate pancake, with protein frosting with more protein frosting and then a protein choc drizzle. 50g protein per slice of 4… WADDUP!


AND OUR LATEST RECIPE:


Vegan Spinach & Banana Pancakes

Ingredients:
Handful Spinach Leaves
1 Cup Ground Oats
1 Banana
1.5 Cup Milk of Choice
1 Scoop Soy Protein Isolate (or sub with preferred protein powder)
1 Tbsp Maple Zero Syrup (or agave/ honey)
1 Tbsp Chia Seeds
1 Tbsp Water
1 Tsp Baking Powder

Method:
Add all the ingredients into a high speed blender ( we used a Nutri Bullet)  and set aside for about 5 minutes. You need to let it set so that the chia seeds get to work and soak up some of the moisture.

Note: If you like your pancakes thick and chunky, the recipe as above will make them like that, however if you prefer thinner ones, just add more water or milk.

Prepare a non-stick pan with a dab of coconut oil or coconut oil spray (We used the latter) and turn hob heat onto medium, which is approximately 4 (of 6) on ours.

Start by pouring a spoonful of batter with a tablespoon and cook for several minutes. Then, flip over gently using a spatula and let cook for another several minutes.

Then, drizzle your favourite sauce, fruit or even nut butter and enjoy these delicately moist and delicious pancakes!

Yields 2 servings.

Nutritional Info (per serving of two):

411 Cals | 8.3F | 61.4C | 22.6P

 


Or you could even go for the easy option and buy yourself some Protein Pancake Mix! Our favourite flavour is the Maple!


Note: Please make sure your pan is non-stick or else you are going to have a BAD TIME making pancakes! Read our How: To Pancakes for more help!

Hope this post gives you all some pancake inspo.

Don’t forget to tag us in your creations, you can find us on all social media platforms @themusclebakery.

Lots of love & Pancakes
The Muscle Baker <3

 

 

 

Veganuary Week Deux ✌🏼

Week Deux, still craving pizza, not missing meat, haven’t watched Earthling’s yet, the oven man farted in my kitchen and still eating loads Kale & Quinoa Salad. Check out Week Deux of Veganuary…

Wanna read our first week? Link here.

DAY 8: CRAVINGS 🙄

I was hoping I’d wake up today the most refreshed of all. It was after all, the 8th day of Veganuary and my body was (finally) getting to grips with the whole thing. Or so I thought?

However, the bathroom leak had returned and a 3am, 6am, 8am alarm (to check that we hadn’t flooded) meant I felt like death reincarnate.

The ‘Im going to get up early and be so productive’ mental plans were now ruined and I opted for slothing it out in the confines of my warm fluffy bed for an extra couple of hours. I lay drifting in and out of consciousness until the 7th alarm ‘OMG you are such a fatty’ went off. Best sign as any.

I swirl up my daily dose of Amazing Grass Lemongrass, pop on some running gear and head out into the world for a quick sweat on. Instantly I feel better, running is so therapeutical, so easy to get lost in thought; thoughts about brunch.

Best thing about a morning sweat sesh? The refuelling brunch part. The part that usually consists of creamy oats and peanut butter.

While inhaling my oats, an orchestra of ‘oohs’ and ‘aahs’ ensue. How do people not like this? How can they not like oats. Honestly.

The rest of the day was pretty mundane. Prep invoices for Monday’s re-stocking. Wrap a few bars. Browse ASOS. Go for a massage. Crave pizza. Eat a crisps sandwich. You know. The usual.

I find myself craving foods, not because I particularly want to eat this or that, but because I miss the ‘full’ feeling or feeling of satiety. I understand that this must be a normal feeling, after all the body must still be getting used to the change.

A leftover Christmas chocolate in the form of a strawberry and cream Lindt ball stares at me from the back of the cupboard. It’s pink glistening wrapper, yearning to be touched.

NO!

Instead, I eat a Lenny and Larries cookie which has 4x more calories. Sigh. I see it. I’m gonna get fat by the end of this.

I go to bed hungry. And fat.


DAY 9: BUSY BEE 🐝 

Monday’s are always so overwhelming, the busiest day of the week for us, with approximately 500+ bars getting delivered across all stockists.

So, what does this mean? Less time for making food and/ or eating food cold. (Something I have become accustomed to over the past year.)

I attempt to re-create oats again, I had done them the day before so it was going to be a quick thing. A ‘piece of piss’ you could say. Unfortunately they didn’t turn out so well, I forgot they were on the hob heating up and then I forgot I had poured them in the bowl.

I eat it cold. Obvs.

I realise that Monday’s are not my thing. Or maybe multi-tasking? Maybe both? I’ll go with both.

I spend the rest of the day busy and simultaneously scheming up meals in my mind.

End up eating a quinoa and kale salad for the umpteenth time.

Monday. Goodnight.


DAY 10: FAT 🐷

I wake up feeling fat.

Not bloated.

Fat.

It dawns on me that MAYBE it’s not the change to veganism that is making me feel like this, but the overconsumption of Yorkshire puds, roast potatoes and Lindt balls during xmas that in fact have contributed to my demise.

I see a meme that says ‘it’s been 12 years, maybe am not bloated, just fat’ ~ I relate to it.

(Shoutout to memes though, it’s great knowing that no matter how shitty you feel… someone else has felt the same way too.)

Lunch comes along and I watch my bf consume a large pizza AND burger while I nibble on some leaves (because it’s the only Vegan thing on the menu). I drown my hunger sorrow’s in 3 baskets of freshly baked spelt bread.

Sorry wheat intolerance. Please forgive me, for I was hungry.

8:30pm arrives and i’ve consumed only 20g of 140g protein, I give up on life.

Damn you delicious bread.


DAY 11: REGRET 😪
The bloat continues, except now it’s a mixture of wheat poisoning and Xmas fat.

If momma thought me anything, it’s that when you’re feeling poorly, a good ol toast and a bottle of Lucozade fixes everything. Except my mum was no where to be seen and an avo toast + smoothie is the best I can rustle up. Earning those hipster points the best way I can.

I choose to not eat much all day, par some leftover Hazelnut cookies which I forgot I had made.

This tends to happen often due to the daily baking at MB HQ. Other people find loose change in their pockets, not me. I find cookies. Who’s the real winner huh?

For dinner I opted safe, but was also inspired, mainly due to hunger (after eating basic all day) and tried to re-create Wagamama’s Warm Chilli Salad coz it’s my fave. [Emphasis on tried].

I had a bottle of generic supermarket brand sweet chilli sauce, which I assumed wasn’t TOO spicy. Pan-fried Tofu in it, added more to the salad then an extra drizzle you know, in case I wanted to take a picture of it like the true insta hoe that I am.

‘Assumption is the mother of all fuck ups.’

Do you know the quote, ‘Assumption is the mother of all fuck ups.’ ?

Yeah.

My mouth resembled the fiery pits of hell, and so after several attempts of eating the chilli with a side of salad, I gave up.

I soothed my burning mouth with a high protein Yoghurt mix (Alpro Coconut Yog + Now Foods Vanilla Soy Protein) and I was well and truly DONE.


DAY 12: OVEN MAN 🙋🏽‍♂️
After several days sans oven, (it had suddenly died on me) the man finally came to fix it. I offer him some water as i see him sweat profusely while disecting my oven to pieces.

He became so enthralled in the fixing of my oven that he let one rip.

Yeah. He farted.

Awkward level – Infinite.

I pretended not to hear it, I think he did too, it took a few seconds of silence until he applogised.

‘Its alright’ i laughed.

‘Spinach wouldnt have done that,’ I think to myself.

HOLD UP.

My first veggie joke!

Ok ok. First *lame veggie joke.

I pay him £160, and tip him a Muscle Malt.


DAY 13: MUNDANE 💤

Fridays are usually fairly busy, making sure all bars are ready to roll out on the following Monday.

So, in true busy bee fashion the day was pretty mundane.

Except maybe, the part I had a BBQ tofu Burrito Bowl which was INSANELY good.

Ok and maybe the part I attempted to try a YouTube Hair Tutorial. (It was all fun and games until I was 2 hrs in, an hour late and nowhere near looking like Kendall Jenner.)

I realise that it’s the end if the week and i legit don’t miss meat. Like mentioned before, i miss the satiety feels but the thought of meat is now is slightly off-putting.

I celebrate with a glass of vodka, lime and sparkling water. (Because I’m trying to get my summer body back.)

Note to self: Pluck up the courage to watch Earthlings.


DAY 14: RUNNERS HIGH 🏆

All week I had been mentally preparing myself for today, for tackling a Round the Rock run. For any of you reading this who are not from Gibraltar, it means running the circumference of Gibraltar (an approximate 10+km’s).

I woke up, downed my powdered greens and waited patiently for them to settle. You see, I can’t run until I go to the ‘ladies room’ or else the run itself makes me wanna. Nothing I hate more than having to stop and walk because I’m bursting or having to barge into a restaurant/ bar ‘Can I use your toilet please?’ Embarrassing. So I wait.

Eventually i set off, found a good pace and in the same way as Brian Griffin in Family Guy, I get the incredible runners high. (Watch linked video to see what a runner’s high is because it is such an accurate depiction.) I beat my time from two weeks prior. I reward myself with a Lenny & Larries Snickerdoodle Cookie.

Lunch plans were at my sisters, and however supportive she is of me taking part in Veganuary the stress of cooking for the family got the better of her: ‘Bring something for yourself I don’t know what to make.’ Wagamama take away it is.

‘All the Edamame beans please.’

In usual post-lunch tradition, my sister (who must be a distant relative of Charlie from the chocolate factory) whips out trays upon trays of chocolates. Hey Twix. Hey Wispa. Hey Twirl. All my old homies staring at me, pleading me to unwrap them. But, I resist. I ain’t a quitter. I also happen to be REALLY stuffed from all of the 3 bowl’s of Edamame beans.

After resisting the chocolates, I got home craving something sweet. Does this happen to you? When you resist certain foods, you crave them? It does to me anyway. So, I made a giant pancake with loads of Choc Hazelnut butter and sliced strawberries. Honestly it was so good! Who said veganism is hard?

I immerse myself in sorting out accounts and emails. I tackle the longest email first: start typing and realise 3 paragraphs in that I haven’t even typed anything at all. Damn keyboard batteries have gone.

Technology.

Omg…

Are Apple products vegan?
I type this into the crystal ball that is the Google search bar…

I was NOT mentally prepared for the sudden wave of information that followed. To find out all the items that are in fact not Vegan.

Tampons, condoms, sugar, toothpaste… the list went on! This can’t be real surely?

Atleast I learn that Apple products are in fact Vegan. Thank f**k for that. Who cares about smelly teeth when you’re using your shiny 27inch 4K Retina iMac anyway? Pft. 


We hope you enjoyed our week two Veganuary. It has been slightly easier than week one, due to learning what foods we like and don’t like. Hope we are proving it is not as hard as you may believe it to be! You may feel that it is impossible to do it and give up *insert favourite animal based food here* (most people say cheese)  BUT, eating LESS also makes a positive change on our environment! Try it  😄


This text is based on the experiences of @themusclebaker.


Check out our Vegan Recipes for inspo.


Much love,

The Muscle Baker ❤️

How to: Make Creamy Oats ✨ 

Apparently there are people out there who still manage to cook their oats wrong or refrain from eating porridge because they don’t like its taste or texture. WUUUUUUUT? 

These people (also known as stupid people) CLEARLY don’t know what they are missing out on! When done right they can be super creamy and delicious. Not to mention how filling they are, packed with all the right nutrients to keep you fuelled all day. Whether you choose to have them for breakfast, for tea or post-workout, you really can’t go wrong with a good bowl ‘o’ oats! 😋


Here is our how to:


HEAT UP MILK
Choose your favourite milk, you will need 200ml per serving. Pour it into a saucepan and bring to the boil.


ADD THE OATS
You can choose to buy sachets of Quaker Oats if you like, we saw some on offer and bought some but they are the same as regular rolled oats which are a lot cheaper. Make sure to go for a Gluten-Free option if you have an intolerance.

You will need 35g of oats. Add them in and reduce heat slightly, keep stirring for several minutes.


MAKE IT SPARKLE
You can add protein powder, we have been using Now Foods Non GMO Soy Protein and it works a treat! A similar substitution would be casein, if any of you can consume dairy this is the one we suggest. One scoop is enough. Maybe you don’t want to add protein, and add matcha powder, lucuma, maca instead… stir that in too and combine it with oats. Keep stirring several minutes until oats have soaked up the mixture and you have a thick and creamy (not clumpy) mix.


PIMP IT UP
Pour into a bowl and add your toppings. We do love nut butters on our oats so you’ll always see some on there when we make them. But, it is upto you (or your macros) what you’d like to add.


DONT FORGET THE SYRUP!
We adore the Zero syrups range by Bulkpowders because they are no calorie, sugar-free yet taste great! (Meaning we get to add loads of it tee hee) However, any syrup you prefer will taste great: agave, maple, coconut nectar, date nectar etc.



We hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we did! Don’t forget to tag us if you make them, we love to see. Find us on all social outlets @themusclebakery/ @themusclebaker 🙂


For 20% discount on Bulkpowders use code: MUSCLEBAKERY20 | 10% discount on iHerb using code: JCB887

All recipes created by The Muscle Bakery and subject to copyright.

Veganuary Week Uno 🌱

Let’s take part in Veganuary they said. It’ll be fun they said. No-one warned us about the cheese cravings, dangers of sudden fibre uptake and how easy it is to get fat. But, it aint all doom and gloom, have a read and find out what the experience has been like so far:

For those who don’t know what Veganuary is, we explained it in our previous blogpost: Top tips to tackle Veganuary.


DAY ONE: HANGOVER 💀

My first day as a vegan was quite uneventful, I skipped breakfast as usual (because bed minutes are worth more than breakfast minutes) and waking up on New Years Day still sporting the previous nights make-up (across face and pillow) to the realisation that it was now Veganuary and I couldn’t call up Mr Pizza Man for the usual fix was really tough. More so, with a hangover. But, I mustered up all my energy and rolled out of bed, first into the bathroom to turn myself from drug addict to relatively normal looking human and then into the kitchen to make some avo toast in true cliche Vegan style.

I hadn’t really given much thought to what being vegan implied, I just knew I didn’t want any other living being to suffer unnecessarily on my account, and no I have not watched Earthlings yet.

The hangover had claimed all my energy and nothing was gonna culminate in a greasy cheesy pizza.

The rest of the day was spent opening the cupboards in a majorly uninspired fashion, the hangover had claimed all my energy and nothing was gonna culminate in a greasy cheesy pizza. The night before the change, I spoke to my only vegan friend, and he advised me to throw out all non vegan products. I said I would, but I didn’t. Ingrained in my very being is my father’s voice saying “waste not, want not” or “starving children in Africa would fight over that plate”,every time I attempt to throw food away. So, when the temptation to whip out the cheese and crackers came along, I knew they had to go.

Sorry dad. Was there no one I could offload my brie on?

Humus and carrot sticks for dinner it is.

And with that, day one finito.

*Pats self on back*


DAY TWO: INSPIRED ✨

Woke up late (earning extra bed minutes) and in a huff decided to be pro-active in a bid to make up for those wasted hours. Chopped up all the veggies possible, laid them in a tray and popped them in oven to grill. +5pts to me.

Determined to stick to my plan, I spent a considerable amount of my lunch hour in the health shop along with most of my life savings; stocking up on organic fruits, vegetables, beans, pulses and vegan alternatives.

Then it hit me,Chocolate!

What the hell vegans? Why would you do this to yourselves, and more importantly, me.

Chocolate is my thing. I eat it every day.

Now, for any of you thinking about going vegan, let me tell you this; your chocolate will never taste the same again. Say goodbye to Green & Blacks Butterscotch bars *sad face*. This does not mean vegans cannot eat chocolate, we can, just not the deliciously smooth milk variety.

I’m a fan of all kinds of chocolate, so after a frantic Google search, I found that some of my favourites were in fact vegan. Lindt Excellence, as from 70% cocoa, awesome! It also helps if you (or in Lisanka’s case, your best friend) is a wizard in the ‘free from’ kitchen. *insert Hazelnut truffles here*

Anyhow, whilst on my splurge at the health shop, I discovered something much better than chocolate anyway, dried pineapple. My absolute favourite fruit ever. There are many versions of dried pineapple on the market, most of them heavily laced with preservatives and sugars. Sulfur dioxide is not something I want to be consuming thank you very much. I’ve become an additive snob along with my vegan-ism. Tropical Wholefoods ‘sun dried pineapple’ is 100% pineapple and is organic to boot. I may have eaten the whole bag in sheer excitement.

Lunch was a bit of everything. I went to the only vegetarian place I could think of close by and ordered enough food to feed a small country. Avocado and tomato salad, roast sweet potato and beetroot salad, 3 bean soup, falafel and humus. I must stress, I did not eat this all. The falafel and humus was enough and I saved the rest for later. I guess I tried to over compensate for the lack of obvious protein on my plate.

I spent most of my afternoon engrossed in vegan literature, i.e. Google, Pinterest and Instagram.

Inspired by the colourful offerings I held in the palm of my hand, I set to work on writing up an endless list of ‘to-do’ recipes. The first on my list? Bean burgers. What i ended up with? Lentil & Quinoa patties. Ah well, its only my second day, ill get this.

I know most vegans and vegetarians say this when they make a meat free alternative, but seriously, I did not miss the meat at all. My bean patty was divine and my mother agreed. Although, I’m going to be honest, I missed the slice (or two) of cheese.

For dessert? The remaining Hazelnut Truffles of course.


DAY 3: HELLO FIBRE 🙃

O.K, so none of these vegan blogs warned me about the side effects of upping your fibre intake dramatically. In hindsight I should have seen it coming. I won’t go into the technicalities, but I am under the mercy of my digestive system, and she’s not being very gracious.

To be safe, my breakfast choice was a Coconut Milk smoothie laced with flaxseed, oats and a generous dollop of Hazelnut butter. Somehow, it felt sensible to keep to liquids, or at least it seemed logical to me.

I’ve started slowly telling people that I am cutting out meat, dairy and any other animal products from my diet and for the most part everyone is surprisingly supportive. Vegans tend to get a bad reputation for being pushy, preachy, holier-than-thou know-it-alls, so the common response when you tell someone you’re vegan is a defensive one. I know, because I used to get that way.

I once tweeted something quite awful about a vegan, and how I wanted to slap her in the face with a steak. In jest, of course. It’s not that she was vegan, she was just an ass hole; an ass hole who happened to be a vegan.

I don’t want to be one of those people who sneers at your life choices at the dinner table, or aggressively pushes their beliefs on others.

Lunch was leftover bean patties paired with homemade sprout crispies; an idea that was inspired by one of many Vegan Insta-foodie accounts I have began to follow since starting Veganuary. My judgement clouded by excitement, but my fibre intake jeopardised. A decision I would come to regret.

I feel a constant need to eat and to be nourished, and as a result I’m eating copious amounts of nuts, nut butter, seeds and dried fruit, namely cashews, peanut butter and dried pineapple. I may be eating too much, but how can something so small be so calorific?

*sigh*

Dinner comes along and in usual post-workout fashion, am really tired, cranky and hungry. I only have enough macros left to eat protein and not much else and with that, for the first time since starting, i wish for some chicken. I give myself a few imaginary slaps and proceed to whip up some Satay Tofu. (Honestly… it was horrible, but i ate it anyway.)

Tomorrow will be better, surely.


DAY 4: BLOATED 💩

Not loving myself at the moment if I’m totally honest. I feel like a blow up doll. I’m swollen, uncomfortable and fat.

The thought of a lean scrambled egg breakfast was plaguing my mind. I banish the little yellow clouds of protein goodness from my thoughts and again opt for a liquid breakfast. Paired with a bowl of oats. Girl logic.

Getting ready for work was a chore, everything feels too tight and I was in no mood for the confines of hosiery. I look in the mirror and liken myself to a dairy cow who’s been pumped full of hormones. Even my face looks distorted. What’s happening to me?

Google will know.

“Is veganism making me fat and ugly?”

The short answer is yes, the long one is no.

There is a common misconception, that there are certain things one can do to “detoxify”

When you starve your body of all animal products, a lot of weird stuff happens. You might feel overly emotional and sensitive,experience unexplained aches and pains, tension headaches,flu-like symptoms bloating, constipation, diarrhea (or both), vomiting (or all three). You may start thinking your body is punishing you for deviating from what we all believe is our God given right, eating animals. I likened it to going cold turkey on Heroin, not that I’ve ever been a heroin addict, but if Eastenders taught me anything, it’s that addicts go through hell when they give up the goods.

Hang in there. It will get better, you will get better. Much better.

Your face wont always resemble a big hunk of celeriac (organic of course), I promise.

I will say this though, the withdrawal symptoms are real. It will happen to you. Just think of it as a good spring clean. The body is ridding itself of mercury, pesticides, bacteria and hormones along with a whole host of other nasties found in animal based foods.

Thankfully, i didn’t have to worry about lunch today. Wagamama had my back. All the Edamame beans please.

Note to self: Stop buying dried pineapple.


DAY 5: STILL BLOATED 💩💩

The ugly continues.

I stare at my reflection in the mirror… how is this bloat even normal? I look like I’m in my third trimester, ready to pop triplets and my partner has already begun mocking me. ‘Stop sticking your belly out.’ he says … I wasn’t even. I start to think of all the moments in my life i wasnt bloated and took for granted.

F**K you sprouts.

I proceed to rummage through all my clothes, finding all and any baggy items, telling myself, ‘Today, i will refrain from eating fiber. I can do this.’

Breakfast was again a liquid option. With toast, toast is always a good idea, and 100% vegan.

In a bid to avoid any extra fibre, I steered away from all the cans of neatly stacked beans which I had impulse bought in my pre- veganuary excitement. My next best bet for getting some high protein foods in my belly? Tofu. I remembered a chicken nugget recipe i used to make, so applied the same ingredients and methods to the tofu instead. Thankfully, it was a success and possibly the best Vegan recipe ive made so far. #VegansOfIG rejoice. Tofu nuggets was born.

I start feeling a little bit better come afternoon and the bloat subdued after several toilet visits. (Gotta thank the extra dosages of lemongrass tea for that).

Then much to my surprise, an asos delivery came a knocking at my door, inside? Some new training gear! I popped it straight on, and pranced around feeling as light as a pringle. What a contrast to this morning!

Eager to test out the new gear, i opened up my NTC app and set off for a run. I started running and couldnt stop. I felt alive. For the first time in all of Veganuary i was PUMPED! Was it being Vegan that had made me able to run for so long? Maybe it was, who knows. Either way, i was loving it.

 


DAY 6: OK, I GOT THIS 🙅🏼

Fresh from the previous days motivation i woke up feeling great, not only had it been a while since i was capable of running 10k but for the first time all week… no bloat! YASSSSS! Guess this Veganism is kinda alright!!? With a smile on my face, i swirl up my daily dosage of super greens and hot lemon water before seizing the day ahead.

It was a busy day prepping bars for the week ahead, and even when my oven broke and toilet started leaking… my positivity levels were still high. After all, what is a broken oven in the grand scheme of things? Im alive, i’m healthy and have a fluffy gown that warms me up at night. It could be worse.

 


DAY 7: HAPPY ONE WEEK! 🎉

I would love to say that I woke up this morning feeling rested and refreshed. The truth is I was kept up half the night by my upstairs neighbour. 1 am is as as good a time as any to grind cacao nibs in your antique heavyweight bronze pestle and mortar (So 2017).

I know because after half an hour of racking my brains I asked him what the hell that was.

“I’m making chocolate, darling, come up it’s fabulous. I’ve got cacao nibs on the grind.”

“No thanks, it’s late. I’m trying to sleep.”

“Save me some.Goodnight.”

If I wake up at 10 i’ll get a solid 8 hours.

6 hours later, a frantic mother charges in my room like a bull in a china shop, looking for her charger (why in my room I don’t know).

I’m up. I’m annoyed. Tea.

I love the ritual involved in making a pot of tea. i opted for my favourite: mint tea.

Soak some loose green tea leaves in about an inch of water in a tea pot. Drain after a couple of minutes, this reduces the bitterness in the tea. Add a bunch of fresh mint leaves and add just boiled water. Wait 3-5 minutes. Pour. Sit outside. Watch the ships go by. Relax.

After about 6 months, endless cancellations and several illness excuses, our attempt at a girl date was successful. I met Liz and we ventured up the Rock and onto the new suspension bridge. The day was still, the sun was warming. The apes were out in abundance.

On our way back down from our trek, Liz was telling a story about how she and her family had been chased by a pack of apes because her youngest brother had mimicked one and proclaimed “OOOH” in its face.

As she demonstrated what her little brother had done over a decade ago, an adolescent ape (who up until that point had been indifferent to our presence and totally engrossed in a fruit peelings), leapt from behind her and onto her back baring its teeth whilst grabbing her arm. Luckily, she’s well acquainted with a quick backhand, and she shook the ape off. It seemed like she’d done this before.

I thought animals were supposed to appreciate vegans?

Exhausted from our ordeal we head off for lunch. But first, a quick stop at the supermarket for some lettuce i needed.

Sixteen impulse buys and £50 later we made our way to Wagamamas for lunch. By the way, vegan bacon bits exist, as does “just add water” sausage mix (vegan of course) and Lotus biscuits are Vegan. You’re welcome.

Wagamama’s always delivers, those edamame beans are life. I have been tempted to hit it up everyday instead of cooking myself but, my bank account denies me this luxury. We engross ourselves in eating these little green pellets of protein goodness, sip on green tea and enjoy eachothers company.

One week Veganuary down, i celebrate by making a Veggie Paella and treat myself to a bag of crisps. Yolo.

Note to self: The stated amount of rice in mother’s recipe is correct. Do NOT add more rice. Repeat. DO NOT ADD MORE RICE.


We hope you enjoyed our week one Veganuary. It has been fun to do, (challenging somewhat) but exciting to try new recipes and foods and not as hard as you may believe it to be! You may feel that it is impossible to do it and give up *insert favourite animal based food here* (most people say cheese)  BUT, eating LESS also makes a positive change on our environment! Try it  😄


 

This text is based on the experiences of Elke Hurtado and Lisanka Trinidad. Written by them both. You can find Lisanka Trinidad and some of her blogposts on Just Weight and Tea.


Much love,

The Muscle Baker ❤️

How to: Smoothie Bowl 🍧

Over-indulgence during the holidays is a natural thing, however it can leave us feeling quite sluggish and uncomfortable. Whenever we feel like this, we get an undeniable desire to ingest nutrient dense food *cue smoothie bowl*

The wonderful thing about making smoothie bowls is that you can make it as simple as you like or really go crazy with it. You can add extra protein, powdered greens, superfoods and more!


Here is our how to basics:


CHOOSE A FRUIT
Your choice of fruit will be the main component of your smoothie bowl. We’ve tried it with all sorts, this includes bananas, raspberries, blueberries, apples, cherries & mango! Bananas and any berries work the best in our opinion, but dont be afraid to try one that you prefer.


FREEZE IT
Whatever fruit you choose, chop em up, add to freezer bags and pop in freezer till they are completely frozen over. Most supermarkets sell frozen fruit and berries anyway, so if you tend to be short of time or are plain lazy head to the frozen section and grab a few bags.

Waitrose has a great variety of frozen fruit including Bramley apples, Cherries, Tropical Fruit & more!


GET SOME MILK
No matter your choice, any milk will work. We have tried this with Coconut Milk, Almond Milk, Hazelnut Milk and recently have favoured Vanilla Soy Milk.

The reason you need a dash of milk is so that the blender can blitz your frozen fruit with ease.


ADD SOME SPARKLE
Not actual sparkles, but you know… ingredients that add some life to it. At this point it is up to you to use your imagination! We always add some form of protein powder and greens, we have even added nut butter before and it was GOOOOD.

Or if you don’t fancy adding anything, just keep it simple instead.


BLITZ IT
Blitz together in a blender and voila, done! We favour doing this in a NutriBullet or similar as larger blenders won’t mix this as successfully unless you do a larger batch.


Tip: If you want your smoothie bowl to be thicker just add more frozen fruit, or vice versa if you want it less!


See video below for example of texture, this is how we love it.



CHERRY SMOOTHIE BOWL

Ingredients:
1/2 Cup Milk of Choice
2 Cups Frozen Cherries
1 Scoop Vanilla Soy Protein
1 Tsp Powdered Kale
1 Tsp Vanilla Extract

Method:
All all ingredients into your NutriBullet and blitz!

Pour into a bowl, eat on its own or top with your favourite ingredients.




Nutritional Info: 290cals / 1.2F / 24C / 41.8P


Don’t forget to tag us if you try any of these recipes, you can find us on all social media outlets @themusclebakery

For 15% discount on Bulkpowders use code: MUSCLEBAKERY15


HAPPY SMOOTHIE MAKING!

<3