Palm oil free potato chips

Easy, breezy, beautiful…Palm oil free potato chips.

Once you scan the aisles in the grocery store, knowing what kind of destruction palm oil does to our rain forests, your heart will start to panic a bit because it truly is in almost everything. Then you'll remember all of the boxes of cereal you had that has contributed to the supply and demand of this conflict palm oil. Then you look at the potato chips and see that, it too, has palm oil  and you put the bag down and smile because potato chips are SO easy to make!! Yes saving the orangutans is THAT easy.
Check out my page Lower your foodprint to read more about it!

-2 big potatoes (or however many you want)
-Olive oil (or any oil you want)
-Seasonings (I used rosemary sea salt and garlic)
1. Preheat oven to 400 F. Use a silicon baking mat on your oven tray (to be trash free!)
Slice potato chips really thin, about 1/8 inch thick with either a mandolin or a evenly cut slices with regular knife (be careful please :D)
2.Take slices and put in big bowl and drizzle olive oil with seasonings over it (drizzle and sprinkle to preference)
3. Evenly distribute slices on mat. Pop in oven for about 30 minutes, and turn. If others are getting crispier take them out, and let the others continue.
4. YAY!!!!

Palm oil free hazelnut butter : homemade NUTELLA

Guys I kid you not, this was by far the easiest and best thing I have EVER made. The problem is, is that the pictures do not do this justice. This was just the right amount of sweet and so nutty and spreadable. I refused to put powdered sugar in it (No refined sugars please) that is supposed to give it a creaminess like the Nutella brand but the texture did not compromise the insanely delicious flavor.

-8 oz hazelnuts
-2 tablespoons coconut oil
-3/4 cup maple syrup (add more or less to preference)
-1/3 cup cocoa powder
-dash of salt
-1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Preheat oven to 375 F. Place all your hazelnuts evenly on your (trash-free!) non stick silicone baking mat.
2. Roast until golden for 10-15 minutes or until fragrant. Let cool then place in food processor (blender works)
3. Grind in processor for a couple of minutes. The hazelnuts will slowly start to release yummy oils that form a nice paste. Process nuts and scrape sides down every now and then.
4. Add in everything else! Food process more until you get a nice paste. 
5. YAY!! 

What can you do with hazelnut butter?!!? Put it in smoothies, spread on bread, put in oatmeal, on bananas. The list goes on!

Palm oil free Ritz peanut butter crackers



DAY 1: These "Ritz" peanut butter crackers are better, if not tasting entirely similar, to the branded one! It has a perfect twist of sweet and salty for that perfect snack. Best part, and the reason why I recreated this recipe, is that they are palm oil free! If you are curious as to why I have a 7 day recipe challenge all about keeping palm oil out of my food (amongst keeping it out of everything else in my life), then check out #2 on my "Lower your footprint" page. This pesky ingredient is contributing to massive deforestation in the Sumatran rainforest and its causing our fragile ecosystem to collapse, driving animals out of their homes and to the brink of extinction.

This snack is super simple to make and you can find these ingredients in sustainable bulk to make this trash free, organic, and cheap! The only thing I didn't buy in bulk was the gluten free flour which I bought in a huge bag that I will reuse for my bulk brown rice flour hauls in the future. It was the first purchase I made since being trash free/plastic free that had any packaging and I'm so happy I found a reuse for the bag. In the future I don't think I will do it again but it was nice to put my brain to the test for alternative uses after it ran out.  I adapted the recipe for the crackers from Gluten Free on a shoe string! It was a perfect recipe, and Im so happy with it.

- 1 cup of Pamelas gluten free pancake/baking flour (you can use regular flour which is easier to find in bulk!)
-4 tablespoons of butter or coconut oil (+2 tablespoons melted oil for brushing crackers before oven)
-1 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
-1 1/2 teaspoon maple syrup
-1 teaspoon paprika
-pinch of salt
-1 tablespoon of olive oil
-1/2 cup water with ice in it (don't include ice in measurement
-Organic and palm oil free peanut butter! 

1. Preheat to 375 F. Prepare your baking sheet with non-stick silicone mat (making this trash free!)
2.Chop the 4 tablespoons of butter or coconut oil in bowl and after place in freezer.
3. Mix dry ingredients in bowl. Take chopped oil oil out of freezer and mix in with dry ingredients cutting with two knives to form pebbles.
4. Add in olive oil and slowly, bit by bit, add in water (discard ice, maybe throw it in a flower pot <3).
5. Stir until complete dough forms. Make into ball and put in refrigerator for about 10-15 minutes (just to firm)
6. After allotted time, take out and put on clean, floured surface and roll out dough to thickness you desire (about 1/8th inch thick). Get circular shape cutter to cut out cracker sized circles from dough. (I got very creative and found a stainless steel lid)
7. Pop in oven for about 8-10 minutes. Take out and brush with melted oil. 
8. Lay out and let crackers cool.
9. Put desired amount on one side of cracker and squish with another! BOOM! YAY!

What did my morning look like for Earth Day?

Earth Day morning was a blast for me! Took a train to Long Island City with my good friend Alex and went to an amazing warehouse called The Materials for the Arts. I have never heard of this center before and was introduced to it by a wonderful activist and model, Cameron Russell. She hosted a small meet but the message was huge. 

The fashion industry is one of the dirtiest industries in the world next to factory farming and oil. When I used to think of pollution I would think of sewage pipes leaking into oceans, or power plants billowing with smoke into the ozone, but one of the biggest contributors to global warming is actually as close as your closet. With damagingly water intensive practices, toxic chemicals being leached into the environment, and the demand for more of earth resources once your clothes are quickly "out of season"; it is inevitable that change must happen for us to sustain existence.

 PHOTO BY MEI TAO. If you can spot me, I have the amazing repurposed bright red yarn hat.

If you can spot me, I have the amazing repurposed bright red yarn hat.

On this day Cameron promotes a new wave of consciousness for sustainability in the fashion world, and sheds light on this amazing center that has been changing the sustainability game for 30 years now. The Material for the Arts Center saved 1.5 million pounds of fashions fabrics and supplies that were headed to the trash last year. They provide a way for companies and individuals to donate unneeded supplies to thousands of non profit organizations with arts programming and public schools.

Cameron states " We need every single person, in the area that they know (their community, their school, their jobs) to push for sustainability because innovation needs to come from all over. So the real choice we have isn't whether or not we are going to change, but are we going to lead change?

So after her inspiring speech, we took a grand tour of the this amazing center. I was mind blown with the things that they had. Textiles, fabrics, old paintings and frames, a whole tub full of brand new phone cases. Leather bags, perfect jewelry rejected by big companies, aisles upon aisles of amazing goods that were near perfect.
If you have time you have to go to their website to learn more!  Click HERE!!! Better yet, go to an event, class, or workshop where you can experience and learn about creative reuse hands on!

After the tour my friend and I got a little too excited about the repurposed clothes and creations so we found a pretty cool chicken head and thought we would make the most of it. Check out the video below!!!! Thank you Alex Todaro for your creative direction in the video and for allowing me to dance to my hearts desire…with a heavy chicken head on.

Happy Earth Day everyone! 

If you want to read another article on this day check out Glamour's article by clicking HERE!!!!

Ethiopian Mesir Wat & Tikel Gomen

Mesir Wat lentil stew and Tikel Gomen cabbage dish! My all time favorite dishes to make and to eat. Both of these are vegan and gluten free and has so much flavor!

MESIR WAT lentil stew

2 cups lentils
1 yellow onion (minced or finely chopped)
4 garlic cloves (minced)
2 tbspns olive oil
4 cups water
3 tbspns Berbere spice mix (I got in bulk)
1 tbspn fresh or powdered ginger
1/2 cup tomato puree ( I didn't use this but authentically it can be added)


1. In big pot put olive oil, minced garlic and minced onion on medium til aromas release and onions become lightly transparent.
2. Add spices and stir well and let simmer for a couple minutes. (If using tomato puree add that)
3. Add water and let boil.
4. Add lentils and let simmer til ready; about 40 minutes until soft.


TIKEL GOMEN cabbage and potato dish


1/3 cup olive oil
1 onion thinly sliced
1 head of cabbage ( I used purple cabbage)
5 potatoes (small cubes)
1 tsp tumeric
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tspn ground ginger
Salt/pepper to taste


1. In big pot add olive oil and onion. Caramelize onion slightly.
2. Add spices, cabbage, potatoes. Stir until all well combined.
3. Turn on low and let all cook together with lid on for 30 minutes or until all soft.

4. Should melt in your mouth. Soooo good. ENJOY!

Rosemary parsnip and white bean soup

Another easy and earth sustainable recipe! So yummy and perfect as a side soup or filling enough as a main course. A dense, warm, and perfectly balanced recipe. I got this recipe and tweaked only slightly from Yummybeet!

4-5 Parsnips cut into 1 inch pieces
1 medium sized onion (cut into large pieces pieces)
5 garlic cloves
2 cups of cooked white beans
1 tbspn of rosemary (dried or fresh)
salt/pepper/lemon to taste
6 cups vegetable stock or water
1/4 cup pepitas to garnish (toast on pan with balsamic, olive oil and salt til golden brown and crispy for about 5 minutes on medium)

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Spread your cut parsnips, onions and garlic on a baking pan and season/toss with olive oil, rosemary, 
salt and pepper.
3. Roast for about an hour until golden and soft, occasionally turning them all. Take out of oven and let cool.
4. In two batches take cooled down roasted items and mix in blender or food processor with lemon juice, white beans, and veggie stock til smooth.
5. Transfer to big pot and let simmer til warm and ready.
6. Serve and garnish with roasted pepitas, olive oil and grape balsamic. YUM!

Roasted Trio veggies with cilantro lime rice

Easiest recipe of all! So satisfying and flavorful and you don't need unnecessary packaged condiments! The veggies are local and/or organic and I got the rice and spices in bulk!

Ingredients for TRIO:
1 sweet potato (cubes)
2 beets or 5 baby beets (cubes)
2 big carrots
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. After making carrots, sweet potatoes, and beets into equal sized cubes; toss in olive oil, rosemary, salt and pepper or any spices you like (cumin, paprika etc…)
3. Put on baking sheet and roast in oven for 40-45 minutes or until golden and soft.

Ingredients for cilantro-lime rice:

1 cup rice (or amount to your liking)

small handful of chopped cilantro
1-2 tblspns of olive oil or butter
2 cups water
1 lime wedge
1 garlic clove (minced)
salt to taste
1. Put olive oil, jalapeño slices and minced garlic cloves on pan on medium heat and let aromas release

2. When garlic slightly browns, throw in rice and toss every now and then for 5 minutes until rice is golden and semi transparent. Add salt and any spice you want while rice is cooking (cumin, etc…)
3. Stir in water and bring to boil.
4. Reduce heat to low and cover for 20-25 minutes.
5. When rice is done, stir in chopped cilantro and squeeze lime wedge.

Prepare simultaneously and when both done, serve on plate and season if need be, garnish with fresh jalapeño slices and cilantro. YUM, Enjoy!


Black Bean brownies

This recipe is directly from Minimalist Baker with a few tweaks. I've used this recipe way before I was trash free and realized I do not need to change a thing except where I source these ingredients. The best brownie recipe I have ever used. So yummy!


1 3/4 cup cooked black beans
2  farmers market eggs (or flax eggs if vegan)
3 tbspns coconut oil
3/4 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt
1/2 cup maple syrup/coconut sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup chocolate chips
Optional but preferred: walnuts, dried cherry etc…
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2. Food process or blend all ingredients together except chocolate chips (if too thick add a little milk or water, but should semi thick)
3. Put chocolate chips in and stir

4. Pour in greased muffin pan 3/4 full in each one
5. Bake 20-30 minutes (check middle, should be fudgy)
6. YUM!

Make sure to compost all your food scraps!