Sarah Danna, the creator of Sarah & Spices is a healthy vegan food creator on a mission – she wants to show you that eating well and filling up on veggies is super simple and incredibly affordable. Did I mention that she’s only 16 years old? How freaking impressive is that?!
Sarah’s passion and enthusiasm shows us that healthy eating is truly enjoyable and achievable for people of all ages. Her passion for cooking is truly contagious. And I know you’re going to adore her creativity (the recipe she’s sharing with us here is pretty bonkers amazing).
So without further ado, I’d love to introduce you to Sarah:
Meet Sarah – Vegan Food Creator and the mastermind behind Sarah & Spices:
Tell us about your health philosophy.
I believe that eating plant based is the healthiest way to live. Not only are plant foods richer in fiber and nutrients, they are proven to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, heart conditions, and certain cancers. I’m passionate about sharing how easy and delicious the vegan lifestyle can be.
What’s your favourite part of your health-esteem journey so far?
My favorite part is finding a delicious, healthy way to live. I love that vegan food leaves you feeling satisfied, while providing the nutrients you need.
Why do you think self-love is an important aspect of someone’s health?
You need to be able to love yourself to fully love others. Believing that you are deserving of love is part of a holistic philosophy of being physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually balanced. It’s so important!
What changes were necessary in order to achieve your state of self-love?
I had to notice that it doesn’t matter what others think about you, as long as you are happy.
What inspired you to become the Healthy Foodie you are today?
I can’t really recall a specific time when I decided to become a healthy foodie. I started to become interested in food and cooking when I was about nine and my food allergies inspired me to be creative and discover new foods and recipes.
Why did you choose to switch to a plant based diet?
At the end of April, my sister came home from college and told me she was transitioning into veganism. I was totally against it! I tried to come up with a million reasons why she shouldn’t. “It’s not healthy.” “It’s expensive.” “vegan food tastes horrible.” Yes, I was one of the “vegan haters”?
She begged and begged me to watch a vegan documentary and I finally agreed to watch Cowspiracy. It was 1 in the morning when I knew I wanted to go vegan. I had only watched 45min of the documentary, but my mind was set. It was shocking to learn the truth of the meat industry. I had this fantasy idea of animals living happy lives on farms. And I assumed that when they died we ate them; no harm done. My little sweet dream world came to an end that night and I never ate meat, milk, eggs, or honey again.
Any tips for those wishing to add more plants to their plates?
Spice is life! I know that’s a little cliche, but it’s a cliche for a reason – it’s the truth. Add spices and herbs to your veggies, create dips and learn to make things more flavorful. It makes all the difference!
Describe a typical day on your foodie plate.
Pre-breakfast: I will normally have a piece of fruit before the gym.
Breakfast: In the winter I love oatmeal or baked sweet potatoes with cinnamon and berries. In the summer I’m more into fruit or smoothies.
Lunch: I normally bring a salad or quinoa bowl to school, but if I’m home I may have something different depending on what I’m craving.
Dinner: Everyday is different. Could be pasta, rice bowl, salad, baked potato wedges, sushi, curry, etc. I love to experiment!
What is a daily health ritual must?
Drinking a tall glass of water with lemon when I first wake up. Also, having at least a few handfuls of greens with lunch and dinner.
What advice would you give for someone wishing to make some health invoking changes?
Find your motivation. For example, if you’re thinking of switching to a vegan diet or adding more vegan food to your plate (we can all benefit from eating more plants) it may be for health reasons or for the animals or even the environment. Whatever you decide, find what reason speaks to you and keep it in your mind as you change your lifestyle. Change and detox take time, so try to stick it out for the first three weeks and then it should become easier.
What’s your biggest health misconception pet peeve?
That one needs animal products for protein. You can get enough protein and complete protein from plants.
What is your favourite health food staple?
Market plates are such an easy and affordable lunch or dinner option. Pick a base of grains or greens. Top with different veggies and starches. Add plant protein, like beans or tofu. Top with nuts or seeds for crunch and a creamy sauce or dressing. Yum!
What’s your go to healthy snack?
My go to snack is fruit. It’s super easy to prepare, but perfectly satisfying. If I’m feeling like I need more than just fruit, I’ll make apple nachos. You can treat yourself to the recipe right here.
What does Health-Esteem mean to you?
Health-Esteem is realizing that you are worthy of being healthy. Your body is a temple that you will live in for the rest of your life, so treat it well. Change takes time, so it’s important to still feel comfortable in your body as you make healthier choices.
Please share a favourite healthy recipe
Chickpea Flour Tofu
Lemon Herb Chickpea Flour Tofu
This amazing take on tofu is 100% soy free and simple to make. Enjoy it as a side dish, appetizer or in stir fries and salad bowls.
Chickpea Flour Tofu
- 1 Cup Chickpea Flour
- 3 Cups Water
Lemon Herb Seasoning
- 1 Lemon Juiced
- 4 Tbsp Coconut Aminos (Or a mix of soy sauce and maple syrup)
- 1 Tbsp Onion Powder
- 1.5 Tbsp Garlic Powder
- 1 Tbsp Basil
- 2 Tsp Oregano
- 2 Tsp Rosemary
- 1 Tsp Cracked Pepper
Chickpea Flour Tofu
Bring 1.5c of water to a boil.
Mix together 1c chickpea flour and 1.5c water until there are no lumps.
Add the chickpea flour mixture to the boiled water. Continue to mix the mixture for 8-10 minutes, or until you have a thick consistency.
Pour mixture into a glass dish and clill for 1hr.
Lemon Herb Seasoning
Slice the chickpea tofu.
Squeeze lemon and drizzle coconut aminos over the chickpea tofu.
Sprinkle the spices and herbs over the tofu.
Grill the tofu for 2-3 min aside (you can also bake or sautéed the tofu).