I have come to love some really awesome products, and vegan or not, you should love them too.
Brown rice syrup. This is a sweetner derived from cooking brown rice with enzymes. The result is a syrup the consistency of honey, with an almost caramel like flavor. My favorite part is looking at the nutrition label: Ingredients: Brown rice. It's awesome. Plus, it's not very pricey like some other special products have proven to be. So far I have mostly used this for making granola (recipe to come soon). It adds a perfect amount of sweetness, and it's just lovely knowing you aren't eating sugar, but instead, a complex carbohydrate! cool, right? I know.
Daikon. A natural diuretic. enough said. ha! But really, this little root is great for you! Its flavor is really mild so I just chop it up and put it in most things that I make. "Daikon cleanses the blood, promotes energy circulation and increases the metabolic rate. Regular use of daikon helps prevent the common cold, flu and respiratory infections. Daikon treats hangovers, sore throats, colds and edema, and it helps cleanse the kidneys and decongest the lungs." (from satyacenter.com) In macrobiotics, they believe it melts internal body fat, and there is a drink you can make each day to promote this. If you google "daikon weight loss tea" you'll see a handful of recipes for this.
Earth Balance butter. yum. I used to use SmartBalance butter (same maker, btw), and it just didn't melt really and tasted like futter, but this EB butter really tastes like the real thing. It's been a really pleasant surprise.
Lentils. If you've read my previous posts, you know that I used to foster a fear and unwarranted dislike for lentils, but now I love them. They are so filling! Plus, they're little, so they are nice introductory bean to have a crush on. Oh, and double bonus, they don't take hours upon hours to cook (unlike YOU, black beans! yeah, you. you too pinto!). Anytime I'm making soup, I throw lentils in. On the nutritional front, 26% of a lentil is protein, and are one of the best veggie sources for iron.
Tofutti cream cheese. The label says it's "Better Than Cream Cheese." I agree. It is. If anything, it's just as good as. I was never a big cream cheese eater, but I like it on a bagel on occasion, and I am never one to turn down a piece of carrot cake with cream cheese frosting (making vegan ones this week! woo woo!) There are also flavored versions, including Garlic & Herb. I know this because I bought it on accident, not knowing I should be checking the container for the word "plain." woops! I'm sure it'll be yummy though. Two thumbs, up, Tofutti! They also make a sour cream (good, but not as good as regular sour cream), and while I have not tried them myself (get with the program, someone other than Whole Foods!), I have heard good things about Tofutti Cuties, which are ice cream sandwiches.
That's all for now!