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Easy Low Effort Vegan Meals (PLUS 3 handy tools for counting calories)

In today’s newest ‘What I Ate in a Day’ video, I shared how many calories I usually eat in a day. Head over to the video to get some tips on how I keep my calories tracked and don’t forget to scroll down if you want to try making the recipes I featured!

Is it important to count calories, even as a vegan? My answer to that is: it depends on your goals!

As you might recall from a previous video I shared, I started counting my calories earlier this year because I wanted to maximize all the free time I had during quarantine. I do understand that keeping a close track on your calories can be a handful at times and counting calories definitely is not necessary, especially if you are a busy person. However, it can be a huge help especially if you have specific fitness goals that you want to achieve. 

Just to give you an idea of how I manage to make my calorie tracking easier, here are three handy tips!

Tip #1: Use a weighing scale

When it comes to counting calories, a digital weighing scale might just be your best friend because you’ll be watching your serving portions and sizes. Even if you’re not counting calories, it’s a really handy tool to have for cooking in general.

Tip #2: Have some other measuring things

Another tip is to use measuring cups and spoons nearby! Seriously, this is a no-brainer especially if you like making your own food and if you like following recipes!

Tip #3: Use a digital calorie tracking app

Technology is wonderful because it continuously evolves to make our life easier. Keeping track of calories is now made manageable by simply going on your phone and scanning barcodes (at least that’s what I can do with the app I use!).

As I have mentioned before, I use an app called My Fitness Pal to help me keep better track of my calorie intake as well as my macros! There are tons of other calorie tracking apps available and most of them are free. I recommend testing out several trackers so you’ll know which one you’d be most comfortable using. 

Hopefully these three tips can help if you want to start tracking your calories, too! Remember, it doesn’t have to be tedious if you are setting the right goals and adopting the right mindset.

Also, don’t forget to watch the video if you want to see what I eat and how many calories I typically eat in a day.

Now, on to the food part — scroll down to see the recipes for the Breakfast Bowl and Savoury Oatmeal! (For lunch, I simply had to make a quick instant noodle dish because I was so hectic!)

Breakfast Bowl

(I would normally have just tofu and broccoli in my Breakfast Bowl but this time, I decided to add in some delicious king oyster mushrooms! That’s the beauty of this recipe; you can simply just add in your favourite veggies and it’ll still be as delicious!)

Ingredients: 

  • ½ tsp oil
  • 130g medium-firm tofu, cut into squares
  • 1 King oyster mushroom, chopped
  • 1 cup Broccoli, chopped
  • 1 cup of brown rice
  • 1 tsp tamari or soy sauce
  • ½ tsp toasted sesame oil
  • Garlic salt
  • Kala namak aka black salt (optional, only if you want the tofu to taste eggy)
  • Vegan kimchi (optional but highly recommended)

Instructions:

  1. Heat oil in a frying pan and add in the tofu, king oyster mushrooms, and king oyster mushrooms. Allow the tofu to cook for 3-5 minutes on each side. 
  2. While the tofu and veggies are cooking, prepare the rice by adding it to a bowl and mixing with tamari and sesame oil. Set aside.
  3. Season tofu, mushrooms, and broccoli with garlic salt. (Optional: If you want your tofu to taste egg-like, add some black salt or kala namak.)
  4. Once cooked, it’s time to assemble your breakfast bowl by adding in the cooked tofu, mushrooms, and broccoli. 
  5. Top with green onions and serve with a side of kimchi if desired. Enjoy!

Savoury Oatmeal with Soy Curls

(Honestly speaking, I couldn’t wrap my head around it yet when I first heard about the idea of a savoury oatmeal! I know a lot of people would be weirded out at first because most of us grew up seeing oatmeal mixed with fruits or anything sweet. But you know what? I loved it! 

If you like rice congee, this one gives a similar experience but is the perfect recipe to make if you’re short on time!)

Ingredients:

  • ¼ onion, diced
  • ½ tsp oil
  • ½ tbsp minced garlic
  • ¼ cup rolled oats
  • ½ cup water
  • Soy sauce
  • Black pepper
  • Toasted sesame oil
  • Chopped green onions
  • Soy curls

Instructions:

  1. In a small pot, heat oil and cook onions and minced garlic.  
  2. Add in rolled oats and water, mix, and let it come to a boil (add more water as needed). 
  3. Add in desired amount of  soy sauce, black pepper, and toasted sesame oil. Mix well.
  4. Add in chopped green onions and let the oats cook a little more.
  5. While the oats are cooking, cook up some rehydrated soy curls in a separate pan until they turn start to brown. 
  6. Add flavour to the soy curls by using your seasoning of choice (I used lemon and herb seasoning). Set aside.
  7. Once oats have cooked, transfer to a bowl and add in the cooked soy curls. 
  8. Top with green onions and enjoy!

If you liked these easy recipes, here are some more ‘What I Ate…’ videos that I think you’d like!

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