Holiday Recipes

Holiday Recipes

The holiday season is the perfect time to indulge! Forget about the turkey and try this incredible vegan pot pie alternative. These festive recipes will provide all the flavor with none of the guilt. Our favorites on the list include the no bake/ no flour lemon tart, latkes, and of course the eggnog. We would love to see all your vegan creations.. share them to our Facebook page!



Yorkshire Pudding 

Potato Corn Latkes  




White Bean Asparagus Soup

Beetroot Soup 

Squash and Beetroot with Cranberry Walnut and Watercress Salad 

Holiday Cranberry Apple Orange Vinaigrette Salad 



Vegan Pot Pie

Sweet Potato and Onion Tart 

Garlic Mashed Cauliflower 

Stuffed Mushrooms


Lemon Tarts 


Gingerbread Men




Gluten Free Vegan Banana Bread Recipe

Gluten Free Vegan Banana Bread Recipe

This is a super moist banana bread recipe and is perfect for those who are on a gluten-free diet

2/3 cup sorghum flour

2/3 cup brown rice flour

2/3 cup tapioca flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

4 flax eggs (1 egg = 1 tbsp of ground flax seeds mixed with 3 tbsp of water, let it sit for 10 minutes in the fridge)


2 cups mashed ripe bananas

1 cup sugar

1 cup unsweetened applesauce

1/3 cup olive oil

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

(optional) semisweet chocolate chips

(optional) toasted walnuts


In a large bowl, combine the 3 flours, baking soda and salt. In a small bowl, whisk the flax eggs, bananas, sugar, applesauce, oil and vanilla. Stir into dry ingredients just until moistened.

Transfer to two 8-in. x 4-in. loaf pans lined with parchment paper. Bake at 350° for 45-55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks. Makes 2 loaves.

The Top Plant-Based Recipes

The Top Plant-Based Recipes

Adopting a vegan, plant-based diet has been one of the biggest life-changing events in my life. Not only has it greatly improved my health, it has enhanced by creativity and opened up a whole new world of cooking and baking for me. One of my favorite hobbies these days has been recreating my favorite meals and I’ve had a lot of help with some wonderful chefs who have been generously sharing their recipes online. Here are some of my favorite sites that I reference frequently.




Vegan Gluten Free Waffles

Vegan Gluten Free Waffles

Waffles are one of my favorite breakfast items and I have been searching for a very long time for a good vegan, gluten free waffle. I was very pleasantly surprised by this recipe from Minimalist Baker, it completely satisfied my waffle craving! It’s crispy on the outside and it tastes almost indistinguishable from a traditional waffle.


Prep time: 15 minutes Cook Time: 15 minutes Total Time: 30 minutes Author: Minimalist Baker Serves 5-6


1 1/4 cups of unsweetened almond milk + 1 tsp apple cidar vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil, canola or melted coconut oil
1/4 cup agave nectar or maple syrup (or honey if not vegan)
1/2 heaping cup of gluten-free rolled oats
1 3/4 cups of gluten free flour
1 1/2 tsp of baking powder
pinch of sea salt

Optional Add-Ins:

1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp flax meal
1/4 cup dairy free chocolate chips
1/4 cup chopped bananas or fresh fruit


  1. Combine the almond milk and vinegar in a small mixing bowl and let it set for a few minutes to curdle/active. Then add the olive oil, agave nectar or maple syrup and set aside.
  2. Add dry ingredients to a large mixing bowl and whisk until well combined
  3. Add wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix well until incorporated.
  4. Let the batter set for 5-10 minutes while your waffle maker preheats. For a crispier waffle, set the waffle maker to 4-5
  5. Once the waffle iron is ready, generously coat with non-stick oil spray and pour about 1/2 cup of batter. Cook according to manufacturer instructions and then remove and place on a baking rack in a 200 degree oven to keep warm. Try not to stack the waffles and keep them in single layers to ensure crispiness.
  6. Serve immediately with your favorite toppings! Store leftovers in a freezer safe bag and reheat in a toaster oven for best results. Waffles will keep in the freezer for up to a couple of months, but they are best consumed within a few weeks.
Creamy (vegan!) Butternut Squash Linguine with Fried Sage

Creamy (vegan!) Butternut Squash Linguine with Fried Sage

Plant based diets are much more common today than ever before and the research is astounding in support of plant-based diets to help support optimal health and prevention of chronic diseases. There are different types of plant-based diets such as vegan diets which are completely devoid of any animal products such as meat, dairy, seafood, eggs, and honey. There are also vegetarian, flexitarian, and pescatarian diets that include some animal products. 

At Liberty Wellness Clinic, we help many families who are plant-based and wish to continue this during their pregnancy and post-partum period. Plant-based diets can also be safely adopted throughout all life stages, from infancy to adulthood.  

If there’s any doubt that a vegan diet can be healthy during pregnancy, I want to share my own personal story as both my husband and I were fully plant-based when we conceived our son. I continued to follow a healthy vegan diet during my entire pregnancy. Given I had pre-existing health conditions, I was considered a high risk pregnancy from the start and was under the meticulous and attentive care of the high-risk unit at Sunnybrook Hospital. They did not once question us about our dietary choices as our son was so healthy at every checkup. We truly believe following a vegan diet helped us through this pregnancy and we delivered our son full-term, healthy and he weighed a hefty 8lb at birth. I continued a vegan diet postpartum and we decided to raise our son completely plant-based. He is now 2.5 and he has consistently been above average for both his weight and height. A well thought-out plant-based diet can be very healthy during pregnancy.  

The benefits go beyond pregnancy as adopting a plant based lifestyle has been linked with having lower cholesterol, lower blood pressure, better blood glucose control and decreased chances of developing cardiovascular disease. There are also lower incidences of obesity, kidney disease, inflammatory conditions, constipation and digestive issues. New research shows a plant-based diet can improve brain health and reduce the onset of Alzheimer’s disease. A plant-based diet is even associated with much lower odds of developing moderate to severe Covid.

If you decide to choose a plant based pregnancy, it is no different than planning for a healthy pregnancy. You always want to ensure you are  getting the macronutrients and micronutrients that you and your  baby require to help support healthy development and body system maintenance.

Here are the most important nutrients vegan mums-to-be should include in her diet:


Your body uses iron to make extra blood and helps move oxygen from your lungs to the rest of your body — and to your baby’s. Roughly 30mg of elemental iron is required every day and good sources include lentils, soybeans, tofu, tempeh, navy beans, black beans, chickpeas, dark green vegetables, fortified breakfast cereals (with added iron), dried fruit, such as apricots, quinoa, brown rice, pumpkin seeds, cashews, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, pine nuts, black strap molasses, prunes.


Vitamin B12 is important for maintaining the health of your nervous system, but it’s also believed that when combined with folic acid during pregnancy, B12 supplements can help to prevent spina bifida and other spinal and central nervous system birth defects in your baby. During pregnancy, 2.2-2.6mcg daily is recommended which can be easily found in prenatal vitamins as well as fortified foods. Food sources include fortified breakfast cereals (choose lower sugar options where possible) , fortified unsweetened soya drinks, yeast extract, such as Marmite.


Because vitamin D is found only in a small number of foods, so all adults, including pregnant and breastfeeding women, should consider taking a daily supplement containing 10 micrograms of vitamin D, particularly during the winter months (October until the end of March). Vegans will need to read the label to ensure that the vitamin D used in a product isn’t of animal origin. From late March/early April until the end of September, most people should be able to get enough vitamin D from sunlight.


Folic acid is essential for the neural tube development for babies. Great news is that the best way to get folic acid into your body is by increasing vegetable intake. Orange juice, lentils, leafy greens and whole grains are all wonderful sources of folic acid. 600mcg per day is recommended.


Omega-3s have been found to be essential for both neurological and early visual development of the baby. Expecting mothers who are plant-based require 4-5g of omega-fatty acids every single day. Good sources are:   seaweed and algae, chia seeds, hemp seeds, flaxseeds, walnuts, edamame, kidney beans and algae oil as a supplementation. 


When you’re pregnant, your developing baby needs calcium to build strong bones and teeth. Calcium also helps your baby grow a healthy heart, nerves, and muscles as well as develop a normal heart rhythm and blood-clotting abilities. 1200-1500mg of calcium is recommended daily. Good sources are:  dark green leafy vegetables, pulses, fortified unsweetened soya, rice and oat drinks, brown and white bread, calcium-set tofu, sesame seeds and tahini, dried fruit.


Iodine is required for intellectual development and thyroid function. Seaweed, fortified breads and iodized salts all contain iodine. People following a plant-based lifestyle should consume about 150mcg per day.


11mg/day of zinc is required for expecting mothers. The growth and development of children starts with a good foundation of zinc from Mom. Whole grains, legumes and nuts are really great sources of zinc.


Choline is a micronutrient that is essential for liver health, memory, muscle control, brain and nervous system function and so much more. Choline helps develop the brain of the baby as well as helping Mom during pregnancy and after with things like breastfeeding. During pregnancy, women should be consuming about 550mg of choline every day. Soybeans, wheat germ and kidney beans are all wonderful plant based sources to add to your diet.


Taurine is an amino acid that is very important for fetal growth. Taurine deficiency  can increase the risk of developing gestational diabetes. However, taurine deficiency is rare as our body can make taurine in the liver from other amino acids and it can be easily supplemented if needed.


Adventist Health Study. (2022, March 17). Retrieved April 2, 2022, from 

Advice for vegan mothers-to-be – nine months of proper nutrition. Today’s Dietitian. (n.d.). Retrieved April 2, 2022, from 

Berry, R. (2017, December 18). Important nutrients for a vegan pregnancy. NaturalPath. Retrieved April 2, 2022, from 

Juniors, P.-B., says, J. M., Murillo, J., Says, A., Alexwhitney, says, K., Kay, says, K., Kathy, says, M., Marie, says, J., & Joe. (2021, March 4). Choline for plant-based diets. Plant Based Juniors. Retrieved April 2, 2022, from,diet%20to%20meet%20their%20needs

Kesary, Y., Avital, K., & Hiersch, L. (2020, August 10). Maternal plant-based diet during gestation and pregnancy outcomes – archives of Gynecology and Obstetrics. SpringerLink. Retrieved April 2, 2022, from 

Kim, H., Rebholz, C. M., Hegde, S., LaFiura, C., Raghavan, M., Lloyd, J. F., Cheng, S., & Seidelmann, S. B. (2021, May 18). Plant-based diets, pescatarian diets and COVID-19 severity: A population-based case–control study in six countries. BMJ Nutrition, Prevention & Health. Retrieved April 2, 2022, from 

LH;, A. (n.d.). Vitamin B12 metabolism and status during pregnancy, lactation and infancy. Advances in experimental medicine and biology. Retrieved April 2, 2022, from,secretion%20and%20forms%20in%20milk.

Pregnancy. Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. (n.d.). Retrieved April 2, 2022, from 

Sebastiani, G., Herranz Barbero, A., Borrás-Novell, C., Alsina Casanova, M., Aldecoa-Bilbao, V., Andreu-Fernández, V., Pascual Tutusaus, M., Ferrero Martínez, S., Gómez Roig, M. D., & García-Algar, O. (2019, March 6). The effects of vegetarian and vegan diet during pregnancy on the health of mothers and offspring. Nutrients. Retrieved April 2, 2022, from,a%20strong%20awareness%20for%20a 

Understanding Cooking Oils

Understanding Cooking Oils

Finding the best oil to use can often be a confusing one and this is one of the most frequently asked questions I get in my practice. The main determinants of a good oil depends on what type of oil it is and the level of antioxidants it has. Antioxidants are health benefiting substances that are found in foods, and they protect our body’s cells from damage.


There are 4 basic types of oils: saturated, polyunsaturated, monounsaturated and trans fats. In general, saturated fats are made with glycerol and three fatty acids and they are found most commonly in meat fat, dairy products and coconut oil. They tend to be more stable, making them the most suitable for high heat cooking.

Some people are confused about saturated fats because they have long been associated with heart disease because it can raise cholesterol levels but depending on the source of saturated fats, it may be raising good cholesterol HDL and not bad cholesterol like LDL and triglycerides. This is the case with coconut oil. Unrefined coconut oil contains the highest amount of saturated fat amongst all the oils but it is extremely stable, and although it raises cholesterol, it is attributed to its ability to increase good cholesterol rather than bad cholesterol making it one of the best choices for cooking. Good oils also have high amounts of antioxidants which protect the body, while bad oils that can cause heart disease contain large amounts of free radicals which damage the body.

Polyunsaturated fats are less stable when extracted and they tend to produce more free radicals when heated. Oils with higher than 20% polyunsaturated fats shouldn’t be used for cooking because they tend to produce significant amounts of free radicals when exposed to heat. Many vegetable oils have high amounts of polyunsaturated fats but it has a high smoke point, which leads people to thinking they are good cooking oils. Having a high smoke point and stability during cooking are two different things. Many oils that have high smoke points are highly unstable during cooking, releasing damaging free radicals into the foods. This is the case with most vegetable based oils.

Monounsaturated fats are relatively stable when exposed to heat and is a fair choice for cooking. They are found most commonly in olive oil and avocado oil.

Trans fats can be found naturally in small quantities in some foods such as meat and milk products, and it can also be found in many processed foods. The trans fats found in processed foods are usually artificially made by an industrial process. Trans fats are damaging to the body because it not only raises bad cholesterol LDL, it also lowers good cholesterol HDL. Trans fats should be strictly avoided because it increases the risk of diabetes, stroke and heart disease.

Trans fats can be found in fried foods like doughnuts, cakes, pie crusts, biscuits, frozen pizza, cookies, crackers, and stick margarines and other spreads. You can determine the amount of trans fats in a particular packaged food by looking at the Nutrition Facts panel. However, products can be listed as “0 grams of trans fats” if they contain less than 0.5 grams of trans fat per serving. You can also detect trans fats by reading the ingredients list and looking for the ingredients referred to as “partially hydrogenated oils.”

Let’s now take a look at all the different types of cooking oils: 

As you can see, coconut oil comes out by far as the best cooking oil. Having the high amount of saturated fat makes it the most stable cooking oil. It also contains a high level of health-benefiting antioxidants.

Animals fats like butter and lard also contain a high amount of saturated fats making it a stable cooking oil, however, animal fats are often low in antioxidants and full of environmental toxins. Animal and fatty foods contain the highest levels of DDT and PCBs because they are stored in fat and increase in concentration as they move up the food chain. Environmental pollutants are toxic to the immune system, reproductive organs, neurological system and many of our glands and should be avoided.