21-Day Vegan Kickstart






Nutrition Resources for Healthy Families

New Parents | Childhood and Adolescence | College-Aged



Nina Gonzalez is a freshman in college this year—where she will make sure there are healthful, plant-based options on the menu. She recently appeared on ABC News to discuss how in high school she successfully worked with her school system to make a vegetarian option available every day at public schools in her county. Here are a few of her favorite dorm room snacks, dining hall requests, and recipes:




  • Dr. McDougall’s instant cup of soups
  • Instant oatmeal
  • Soy and rice yogurt
  • Dried fruit
  • Trail mix with nuts, raisins, vegan chocolate chips, and pretzels
  • Dry-roasted edamame
  • Lara, Clif, or Luna bars
  • Rice cakes

Dining Hall

Make sure you confirm items are prepared vegan.

  • Minestrone soup
  • Portobello mushroom burger
  • Mexican-style fajitas with rice and beans, salsa, and guacamole
  • Salad
  • Baked potato loaded with veggies and beans
  • Pasta marinara or pasta primavera
  • Pizza, hold the cheese, load up on veggies
  • Hummus and pita

Stuffed Bell Peppers

Simple steps to a yummy meal: Cut your bell peppers open and place chickpeas, wild rice, sautéed onions, sautéed mushrooms, sautéed garlic, carrots and any other veggies available. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes or until heated through.

Vegan Cake

2 cups sugar
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup Hershey's cocoa
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
Egg Replacer for 2 eggs
1/4 cup nondairy milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup boiling water

Heat oven to 350 F. Combine dry ingredients. Add egg replacer, milk, oil and vanilla, beat on medium speed 2 minutes. Remove from mixer and stir in boiling water. The batter should be thin. Bake in oven for 30-40 minutes.


Panini bread or bread of choice
Vegan cheese
mustard, pickles, or other favorite sandwich toppings

Cut eggplant thinly and place cut tomatoes on panini and vegan cheese. Put on grill (like a George Foreman) then top with favorite toppings like, mustard and pickles. Cook until veggies are heated through and vegan cheese is melted.

Learn more about Nina >


The Dorm Room DietIn The Dorm Room Diet, author Daphne Oz helps college students figure out how to eat right and stay healthy without packing on the proverbial “freshman 15.” She has tips on how to introduce healthier eating habits, within the time, money, and space constraints of college life. She also promotes “conscious eating”—or understanding how food is processed and delivered, and how food choices can have an effect on food production and the environment. Daphne is the daughter of The New York Times best-selling authors Dr. Mehmet Oz and Lisa Oz. Here are a few of her favorite recipes:

Miso Soup

I love to make this ahead of time and it keeps well in the fridge for three days, so you can warm it up for soup on the go. It’s a delicious snack or part of a meal that is loaded with nutrients, enzymes, and minerals. Seaweed is nature’s superfood.

Makes 1 cup

1/4 cup dried wakame (Japanese seaweed), if desired
1/4 cup chopped firm tofu, if desired
1 cup hot water (not boiling—boiling water kills the good enzymes in miso)
1 tablespoon miso paste

Mix the wakame and tofu into hot water, and then add the miso paste last, and voilà!

Kale Chips

Makes 6 servings

1 head of kale
olive oil
2 tablespoons salt, sea salt preferred
seasonings to taste, optional

Cut off bite-sized pieces of kale after washing and drying thoroughly. Using your fingertips, lightly brush all pieces front and back with some olive oil, and lay in a single layer on a cookie sheet. Sprinkle with salt and any other seasonings you like. I sometimes use garlic salt, or add flavorings like cumin or curry for some added zest. Bake for 8 minutes at 315 F—crunchy goodness!

Vegan Tofu Dog Sandwich

This sandwich is so easy to make, cruelty-free, and packs a ton of fiber and vegetarian protein!

Makes 1 serving

1 tofu dog (vegetarian hot dog substitute)
1 slice whole wheat, whole grain, or millet (gluten-free) bread
yellow mustard
ketchup (non-high fructose corn syrup!)

Put the tofu dog, which comes frozen, in a bowl with just enough water to cover it in the microwave for 1 minute. Test if the dog is hot. If not, another minute in the microwave is needed. The tofu dog should be hot in the center before eating. Toast the bread and slice in half lengthwise, so you get two equally sized, thinner slices. Slice the tofu dog lengthwise, and lay across bread. Spread as much mustard as you’d like and 1 tablespoon ketchup on the other half of the bread (or you can squirt ketchup and mustard over the hot dog itself).

Fruit Compote

Makes 1 serving

This sure beats eating a bag of candy when you get a craving for something sweet and sour.

1 cup mixed berries, frozen
1 teaspoon sugar
1 lemon, juiced

Microwave berries for 15 seconds, then sprinkle with sugar and lemon to taste. If you’re feeling extra adventurous, skip the lemon and try some balsamic vinegar instead—it’s an incredible flavor pairing.

Excerpted from The Dorm Room Diet by Daphne Oz Copyright © 2010 by Daphne Oz. All rights reserved. Reprinted by permission of Newmarket Press, 18 East 48 St., New York, NY 10017, www.newmarketpress.com.

Learn more about Daphne >






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