While many struggle when cutting dairy from their diets, I honestly haven’t missed it. Yes, I used to love dairy cheese, yogurt, and ice cream, but after going 100% plant-based following a breast cancer diagnosis at age thirty, I’ve never felt better. Within a few weeks following the diagnosis, and after much of my own research, I decided to remove all animal products from my diet. Raw fruits and veggies, primarily leafy greens, as well as nuts and seeds were my staple for over a year on my anti-cancer diet. I felt amazing on a whole foods based diet, especially during a time when I was undergoing multiple surgeries, chemotherapy and radiation. I have been vegan for close to nine years and have no intention of turning back. I feel better, I look better and it gives me great joy knowing that I am making positive changes in my body, for the planet and in the lives of animals every single day.
It’s so wonderful to be living at a time where there are so many amazing products, websites and books that support vegan/ plant-based diets and lifestyles. Once you learn the ropes of living dairy-free it’s quite easy. Swapping dairy cheese with nutritional yeast in many recipes is a perfect way to still have a cheesy taste and texture without enduring the negative impacts of dairy, for instance. You might find once you eliminate dairy products from your diet that you experience positive changes in digestion, sleep, mood, your skin and more.
I’ve enjoyed “veganizing” many of my favorite recipes since going vegan in 2008. One of my favorites that is both tasty and easy to make is vegan quiche. Though quiche is traditionally heavy on both eggs and cream, I’ve made some adaptations that make this dish better-for-you and still delicious. In fact, few people can actually tell the difference. Check out my egg-free and dairy-free veggie quiche recipe below.
Dairy-Free Mixed Vegetable Quiche ~ Makes 6 servings
Vegan/Nut Free/Soy Free
Prep time 30 minutes, total baking time: 1 hour
- 1 vegan-friendly pie crust (I used a pre-made whole wheat pie dough)
- Egg replacer – equivalent to 5 eggs (I used the Follow Your Heart VeganEgg)
- 1 cup dairy-free shredded cheese (I used cheddar)
- 1/3 cup So Delicious Culinary Lite Coconut Milk
- 2 red potatoes, chopped
- 1 small yellow onion, diced
- 1 medium zucchini, chopped
- 3-4 mushrooms, chopped
- 1/4 cup broccoli, chopped
- 1 medium-sized tomato or a few cherry tomatoes (for topping), chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
- 1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
- 1 bunch of fresh greens for topping such as parsley or rosemary (I used radish sprouts for added color)
*Feel free to use your favorite seasonal vegetables. Purchase local and organic whenever possible.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
- Press chilled pre-made pie crust into 9-inch glass pie pan
- Layer all veggies evenly into pie crust (except tomatoes)
- Sprinkle seasoned salt over all vegetables
- In a large bowl prepare VeganEgg according to directions on package. Mix in So Delicious Culinary Coconut Milk and pour over veggies
- Place quiche in oven for 45 minutes, set timer
- Remove from oven and sprinkle shredded vegan cheddar cheese evenly across the top
- Garnish with sliced tomatoes and dried parsley flakes
- Return to oven and bake for another 15 minutes
- Remove from oven once cheese is melted and crust is golden brown (insert toothpick into center & remove to test)
- Let cool for approximately 20 minutes
- Slice and serve warm & top with your favorite dairy-free sour cream, salsa and/or fresh greenery
If you’re curious and need a kickstart to help you go dairy-free, So Delicious Dairy Free has created a great resource to help! Take their free 21 Day Dairy Free Challenge starting January 23, 2017. Learn more by visiting their website. So Delicious Dairy Free will provide excellent resources such as recipes, tips from experts, giveaways and more! I hope you’ll consider taking the challenge. If you do, I’d love to hear about how your experience went and what positive changes you may have noticed.
Photography by Brian Kelly Denton