© Unsplash/Brooke Lark
It’s always nice when a win in one area of your life leads to another win—and that’s precisely what happens when you make eco-friendly food choices. Your body benefits from more nutritious meal ingredients, while the impact to the planet is minimized thanks to sustainable growing and production processes. The start of a new season is a great time to re-evaluate our lifestyle habits, including assessing the food we eat to make sure that we’re nourishing our bodies. Here are some tips to help you get started:
It can be tempting to hop on the dieting bandwagon and try out whatever is trendy (but not necessarily better for us). While you may see fast results, studies show people who go on restrictive diets usually end up gaining more weight back than they lost over the long run. Instead, focus on making better choices every day, like choosing whole-grain bread versus muffins or having fruit for your midday snack.
Grow Your Own Produce Garden
Long shipping distances contribute to higher carbon emissions, so the closer to home your food is grown, the better for the environment. And what could be closer than your own backyard? Spinach, strawberries, and bell peppers are some of the easier things to grow. If you lack space, even growing your herbs on a small windowsill can make a difference. Or check out a community garden.
Cook More Meals at Home
Many of us grew tired of our own cooking during the pandemic, and with much of the world reopening it’s been tempting to rely on takeout and restaurants more. But research shows that cooking at home is an effective way to improve diet quality, lose weight and prevent diabetes. So, search for some new nutrient-dense recipes you can cook yourself and get back in the kitchen.
Choose Sustainable Ingredients
As you’re reassessing the impact of your food on your body, take some time to think about the planet too. Look for food from local sources and companies with brands that have strong sustainability practices, like Bimbo Canada, which offers high-quality yet affordable foods made with the simplest ingredients. The company behind bakery favourites like Dempster’s is committed to using 100 percent sustainable packaging and reducing food waste by 50 percent by 2025.
Incorporate More Whole Grains
While many of us grew up eating white bread at home, whole grains are the more nutritious alternative. In fact, whole and multi-grains are better sources of fibre and nutrients like iron, folate and selenium. Look for bagels, English muffins, and sliced breads in tasty whole-grain varieties.
Choose Sustainable Wines
It can be easy to focus on sustainable local produce and forget about the other items that go into a meal, like condiments and even wine. Many Canadian wineries lead the way with green processes, like using energy-efficient lighting and capturing rainwater for reuse. Whether for drinking or cooking, do some digging to find a sustainable local vineyard for your wine.
Get In Your Greens With Greenhouse
Kickstart your health and wellness journey with these mouth-watering recipes from Canadian organic beverage company Greenhouse, made from sustainable and
Recipes by Elena Mari and Nathan Legiehn For Greenhouse
Zesty Za’atar Tahini Latkes
With a crispy exterior and a pillowy centre, there’s nothing quite like a perfectly pan-fried latke… especially with a touch of zesty Za’atar to take them up a notch.
These latkes are the perfect bites to warm you up on a cold end-of-winter night. Serve with a small dish of coconut yogurt or plant-based sour cream for dipping, or top individually.
- 2 russet potatoes, shredded
- ¼ onion, thinly sliced
- 1 chia egg, or other egg alternative
- 2 tbsp gluten-free flour or matzo meal
- 1 tbsp za’atar
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Coconut oil for frying
- Plain coconut yogurt, or plant-based sour cream
- Roughly chopped dill
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Begin by thinly slicing your onions and shredding the potatoes, using a grater or a mandolin.
- Next, take the shredded potatoes, place onto a tea towel, and squeeze hard to drain any excess liquid. This will help the latkes to crisp up nicely when frying.
- Add all the shreddings and remaining latke ingredients to a large bowl and mix well.
- Heat the coconut oil in a pan over medium heat.
- As the oil warms, begin creating individual latkes by forming the mixture into smallish balls and giving one last squeeze to eliminate any remaining moisture. Carefully place these into the pan, taking care not to overcrowd it.
- Fry the latkes until golden brown (around two to three minutes on each side), then transfer onto a paper towel to drain any excess oil.
- Serve with a dish of coconut yogurt (or sour cream), with a generous helping of za’atar, a squeeze of lemon, some roughly chopped dill, a spoonful of tahini, and salt and pepper. Alternatively, you can top latkes individually and serve.
Fluffy Blender Pancakes (V, GF)
The only thing better than breakfast in bed? Pancakes in bed!
This fluffy plant-based variety is sure to keep you cozy on even the snowiest of mornings. What’s more, you can whip up the batter in a high-powered blender, so no fancy standing mixer—or gruelling arm workout—necessary.
The flapjacks are also incredibly versatile, meaning you can smother, sprinkle, or drizzle with snowfalls of whatever toppings your heart desires. Get flippin’!
- 2 cups gluten-free oats
- 2 ripe bananas
- 1 ½ tsp baking powder
- 1 chia egg (1 tbsp chia seeds + 2.5 tbsp water, whisked and refrigerated for 15 minutes; or egg alternative of your choice)
- 1 ½ cups ALMONDMILK
- Combine all ingredients in your blender.
- Blend until your pancake batter reaches a consistency smoother than freshly fallen snow.
- Gently heat a generous dollop of coconut oil in a frying pan, and slowly ladle in the batter for one flapjack from your blender until you reach your desired pancake size.
- Cook until bubbles begin to form, then flip the pancake and cook the other side for about two minutes, or until golden. Once cooked, remove from heat and pile on to a plate. Repeat until your batter is finished.
- Decorate your pancake mountain with your favourite toppings. If you need a little inspiration, give one of our recommendations below a try.
- Smother your stack with warm almond butter, then sprinkle smashed frozen raspberries, sliced strawberries, and chopped almonds over the top for added sweetness and crunch.
- Melt your favourite dairy-free chocolate and drizzle over the pancakes. Next, add a handful of sliced bananas, a pour of maple syrup, and more shavings of chocolate. Finish with a Greenhouse Hangry Bites atop the stack.
- Sprinkle a few melted frozen blueberries onto your pancakes. Next, spoon a dollop of cardamom lemon yogurt onto the pile (simply stir together 2 tbsp of plain plant-based yogurt with a pinch of ground cardamom, the juice of half a lemon, and half a teaspoon of maple syrup), and add lemon zest for garnish.
Greenhouse is a Canadian organic beverage company that’s making it easier to get your daily dose of healthy greens. With a wide range of cold-pressed juices, plant milks, lemonades, kombuchas, and more, all packaged in sustainable glass bottles, Greenhouse ensures healthy products of the highest quality.
Drinking a big bottle of fruits and vegetables is an easy and efficient way to soak up nutritious, plant-based energy. Much of the produce used in Greenhouse juices are purchased directly from local, organic farms. They also prioritize “seconds,” which are the misshapen fruits and vegetables that often end up in landfills. Greenhouse sends the fibrous byproducts of their fruit and vegetable juices back to local farms, where it is used as compost to help new crops grow.
Studies have also shown that chemicals used in plastic bottles (even the safest ones) can break down and filter into whatever liquid is being carried—especially when the bottle is exposed to heat or sunlight. That’s why Greenhouse chooses to bottle their delicious drinks in sustainable glass bottles over plastic ones. When producing drinks filled with healthy greens, as Greenhouse does, it just makes sense to package them in the healthiest way possible.
Greenhouse now ships to Vancouver!