Healthy Vegan Friday Recipes & Vega Giveaway

Good morning and hi there. This is the last Friday of January, how did that happen? I know many of you live in places where the weather is truly awful right now (I can’t complain, the mild winters in California are one of the million reasons why I live here). Do you have any fun plans to get your through until spring? I’m planning a visit to San Francisco at the end of March and then I’ll be going to Portland in May and San Diego in June. I am looking forward to those adventures.

In the meantime, Fridays are something special and I love our weekly recipe link-up party, Healthy Vegan Fridays. We got a great response this week, we had over 50 entries (you can see them all here)!

As determined by the number of clicks on each recipe, the top three were:

1. Why I Stopped Drinking Green Smoothies from Katherine @ Green Thickies:

Why I Stopped Drinking Green Smoothies by Green Thickies

2. Quinoa Brownies with Peanut Butter Frosting from Corinne @ RI Nutritional House Calls:

Quinoa Brownies with Peanut Butter Frosting from RI Housecalls

3. Donut Muffins from Erin @ Sift, Stir & Devour:

Donut Muffins from Sift, Stir & Savor

Congrats, ladies, on posting these fantastic entries.

Here are some of my fave recipes from last week. I am so hungry now!

1. Most Tempting DessertMint Chocolate Chip Trifle from Almonds & Avocados:

Mint Chocolate Chip Trifle from Almonds & Avocados

2. Easiest Healthy Dinner – Three Bean Tomato & Spinach Stew from Cooking with Siri:

Three Bean Tomato & Spinach Stew from Cooking with Siri

3. Most Inspiring SmoothieSpirulina Blueberry Smoothie from Eat to the Beet:

Spirulina Blueberry Smoothie from Eat to the Beet

Thank you to everyone who participated, I loved seeing all of these healthy, vegan options; you inspire me with your creativity.

If you are a blogger who wants to join our party, here are the rules. You’ll find the link-up button at the end of this post.

Recipe Link-Up Submission Guidelines:

  • Maximum of 2 submissions per week
  • You do not have to be a vegan food blogger to link up, but all recipes must be 100% vegan.
  • All recipe submissions should focus on the most whole, unprocessed and unrefined ingredients as much as possible, although we will still accept recipes that make use of some processed/refined ingredients.
  • You may submit current or past recipes, just make sure they are not ones that you have shared previously on this blog hop.
  • Besides recipes, feel free to submit informative posts that are aimed at promoting vegan, plant-based diets.
  • You must provide a link back to this blog party on your submitted post. You can either grab our badge to display or a clickable link back somewhere on the post you are submitting.
  • When linking up, please make sure to link back to the post you are submitting, not the homepage of your blog.

You may recall that Gabby and I are searching for a new co-host for Healthy Vegan Fridays and we’re currently reviewing the applications that were submitted. We are so blown away by the quality of the bloggers who want to join us and we hope to make a decision this weekend and make an announcement next Friday.

Before I wrap up today’s post, I am doing an awesome, awesome giveaway from one of my favorite companies, Vega. I rarely do product giveaways anymore since it’s hard to find packaged foods with healthful ingredients, but the Vega products are among my favorites.

The impetus for this review and giveaway is the new program coming from Vega and Brendan Brazier called Thrive Forward. The program is a free educational series of videos, lessons, recipes and challenges. As you guys know, I’m committed to Dr. Fuhrman’s Eat to Live program because I find it to be the most scientific and powerful for disease prevention and reversal, but I love taking information from other players like Brendan, Kris Carr, Michael Greger, M.D. and Neal Barnard, M.D., just to name a few.

Vega sent me this prize pack to sample and they’re offering to send one of you lucky readers one, too!

Thrive Forward Giveaway Pack

Vega Giveaway requirements:

1. Visit the Thrive Forward website here and watch the introductory video.

2. Then, sign up to receive e-mails from the program and leave me a comment on this post saying you did so (we’ll be on the honor system).

I’ll select the winner on Wednesday, January 30th, U.S. and Canadian residents only, please.
(Editor’s note: this giveaway is now closed).

Good luck and have a wonderful weekend, friends. 🙂


  1. says

    Hi! I started following your blog simply because of the name and how I wish I’d thought of it! 🙂

    I’ve been doing Thrive Forward all month and have gotten some of Brendan’s books as well and I love how good I’m feeling. Winning that prize pack would be amazing!

    • Ryan says

      So excited! Been on nutribiotic rice protein for awhile. Bought some sample packs of vega last week at whole foods and I’m loving it. I hope I win!

  2. Ceil Hook says

    I am actually following the Thrive program, so I’ve watched the video and signed up for the emails. Lots of good information about nutrition and exercise. Even if you aren’t an athlete 🙂 Would love to win the prize package!

    Also, awesome post today. A ton of great information and sites. I always enjoy reading your blog. Wish you would make your app for Android too!

  3. says

    I LOVE Vega but can rarely afford them – so this prize pack would be incredible! I find that their products really agree with my system. I’m still working on balancing hormones and such, and I’m making sure to get more-than-adequate protein each day in the process – this would help SO much.

    I signed up for the Thrive Forward program!

  4. says

    Hi Carrie! First of all, I’m happy that my smoothie was inspiring. I’ve had one every morning this week, including today 🙂

    I was looking into the Dr. Fuhrman get away in June. Seems like it would be a lot of fun! I really liked San Diego when I was there in August.

    My HVF entry this week is Balsamic Shiitakes & Kale. It includes the G-BOM portion of the G-BOMBS. I’ve been having fun getting as many of those into my meals as possible. Pretty easy since I love every category 🙂

    Brendan’s video made me want to go for a trail run! It also made me think about warm places to live. It’s so cold and rainy here in Portland right now. Anyways, I signed up for Thrive Forward emails. I enjoy Brendan’s books and like his products, too. His smoothie packets kept me nourished during a trip to rural Kentucky last year where I didn’t have access to a kitchen.

  5. says

    I am already part of Thrive Forward – does that count? 🙂 I would love to try some more Vega products, I’m a big fan of what I’ve had so far.

  6. says

    I signed up earliest but have yet to watch the videos. I used to really like Vega but the new formulations have a fair amount of salt (the chocolate sport one, for sure) and I found the vanilla Vega one too artificial tasting. I am curious how you find them.

  7. bee says

    I’ve always heard such amazing things abt Vega, but can’t afford it. I signed up and would love to win the package!

  8. Angela Pinto says

    I’ve been meaning to try out Vega products 🙂 I would LOVE to win this sample so “test it out” before making the leap 🙂 Fingers crossed! Hope you’re well 🙂

  9. says

    Ahhh Healthy Vegan Fridays. My favourite day of the week! It gives me my recipe ideas for the weekly meal menu =)

    I don’t know what the plan is when you are in San Francisco, but you have time for lunch, I would love to meet you there =)

  10. says

    Woohoo! I love Vega! I have a protein powder cabinet (oh yes I do!) and Vega makes a frequent appearance in it. It’s the best one out there! I signed up for their list and I watched the video. I wanna win!!

  11. Angela says

    I’m so sad that the giveaway is only for US residents! I love your blog and am a huge Vega fan! Is it because you are based in the US or because the Vega warehouse is? I thought that since the head office is in Canada it would be open to both. Just curious!

    • says

      Great question, Angela. Let me check with my contact there and see if I can open the giveaway to my Canadian readers. If so, you’ll be entered for sure!

      • Angela says

        Thanks so much for looking into that, Carrie! I know how busy you must be!
        (And thanks for all you are always doing for the blog/community! I love knowing that there others out there following EtL and am always looking for new ideas! I don’t think you get thanked enough for all the support you give us all!)

        *So* glad to see that it’s been opened to Canadians!

  12. Erin says

    I watched and signed up!

    As a new vegan, I’m always looking for healthly products to try, I’d LOVE to sample some of the Vega products!

  13. says

    Hi! I have been drinking Vega One Vanilla Chai for a while now, and I love it! I would really enjoy trying some of the other stuff that Vega has to offer!
    I’m signed up to get emails from Thrive Forward and I watched the video.
    Fingers crossed… I hope I win 🙂

  14. Milly says

    I watched the video, and signed up for the program & emails. I am actually looking forward to it. I thought this was another one of those gimmicks, but there is actually very valuable information on there. Thank you 🙂

  15. Melissa R says

    Hi Carrie! I actually watched the video and signed up for the program and emails a week or so ago. I love the inspiration. I’m always hoping to try some of their products, they sound delish!

  16. Marilyn Ramos says

    Just signed up! Love the Thrive website. Always wanted to try Vega products just got a bit overwhelmed at what they offer and what I should start out with. Thanks for all you do Carrie.

  17. Renee says

    My daughter and I have a Vega shake every morning. We would love to win this pack. We have been receiving the Thrive Forward emails and love them!

  18. says

    Hi Carrie,
    thanks so much for this opportunity to try this Thrive program. Sounds like we are all on the same page of whole food living!! I love Dr Furhman and have read Eat to Live!!
    Thank you,

  19. says

    I signed up! I’m excited about the videos- I love to learn. I feel like knowledge is my armor against disease promoting but tempting foods.

  20. Sarah Wojda says

    Wow! Watched the video- I’ve been vegan for almost four years and I haven’t educated myself in the vegan fitness (protein supplements) area. I am really glad I looked at this giveaway just to learn about Thrive. My 2013 resolution is to gain a more muscular body, so I could kick the skinny vegan stereotype! Being a college student, winning this giveaway would really help !!! ((:

  21. Jeannette Miranda says

    I’m new to the Vegan world. Only a month in. I’m loving it and discovering tons of fun new things with all your yummy recipies. please choose me!!!

  22. Emily says

    I already get emails from Vega and LOVE the Thrive Program! Brendan’s videos are so helpful! This is an awesome prize pack!

  23. says

    I love the Thrive concept!! I am totally into holistic wellness and strive to offer that to all of my patients!! The video was awesome and I signed up!

  24. Carla Moschetti says

    I just signed up for emails from Thrive Forward. I’m looking forward to learning more about it! Thanks!

  25. Brittany Haight says

    I signed up for the Thrive program. I am super excited because plant-based foods are something i’ve been interested in! I love your blog, and love all the updates via twitter!

  26. Alison says


    It’s so great that you’re doing this giveaway as I just signed up for the Thrive Forward e-mail series on Wednesday. I bought some of the Vega products a year or so ago, but have not had a chance to try the newer formulations/flavors. I would love to know what you think of them and how you plan to incorporate them into your daily meals. Thanks!

  27. Tink says

    Signed up with Vega. Excited to try their protein drinks among other products. Great to find there products since I am an endurance athlete too!

  28. says

    Hi Carrie,
    I’m not in North America myself as you know, but I would love if I could enter this for my parents who do live there. I am working hard to get them on the Nutritarian path and I think they’d love the convenience of the Vega Products. We’re all signed up at Thrive!

  29. Jennifer Arent says

    I watched the intro video and signed up…now I’m having a hard time taking a break from my Plan! Thanks so much – I wasn’t aware of the Thrive Program and it’s great! Thanks for all you do, Carrie!

  30. Carrie says

    I was already signed up with Vega :). Hope that counts! Thanks for the giveaway! And for giving access to so many amazing recipes each week!!!

  31. Carrie says

    I was already signed up with Vega/Thrive! Thanks for the giveaway! And for giving access to so many amazing recipes each week!!!

  32. Karen Rooney says

    Hi Carrie!
    I love, love LOVE Vega (and always bring a tub of it with me when I travel!! This giveaway would be perfect for an upcoming trip to Turkey in April…). Thanks for introducing me to the Thrive Forward plan!! And thanks for opening the contest up to us Canucks!

  33. Candace says

    Hello! I completed the Vega Giveaway requirements and watched the Thrive Forward introductory video (as well as quite a few others in the Thrive program), and then I signed up for the e-mails as well! This was a great suggestion; thank you! VegaOne French Vanilla is amazing!

  34. says

    Great videos. Even though I already eat a plant-based diet (vegan) — and have for 20 years — I found good information and reminders in the video lessons. Haven’t had the budget to try Vega products; so, would love the giveaway sample pack.

  35. Jessica says

    Just signed up on the Thrive Forward website. I’ve tried a couple of their products but would love to try some more!

  36. Amy says

    Signed up for the Thrive site, and have made similar smoothies before (need to get back in the habit)! Have never added any powders because at the price it’s hard to decide to try not knowing how it will affect taste/texture. Would love to sample Vega!

  37. Jennie says

    I have signed up for Thrive Forward. Love Vega products! Just finished my first half marathon and wouldn’t have made it through the training without them!

  38. Terri Cole says

    I’m on the Thrive Forward email list! As someone who has been vegan less than a year, I really appreciate the info I get from them.

  39. Lisa says

    I, too, have been following Dr. Fuhrman’s nutritarian lifestyle and have been a big fan of you as well. I’m glad I visited the Thrive Forward website and signed up to receive e-mails. Brendan’s videos reaffirm and reinforce what I’ve learned and have developed such a passion for. I’m grateful to the community of bloggers who provide and support — and am especially happy that I found you, Carrie, because I love reading your blog. You pour your heart into helping others. Thanks!!

  40. says

    Yay!! So exciting about this giveaway! We are on week four of a whole foods plant based vegan diet. After growing up big meat eaters we are learning how to cook and eat all over again. It’s been a big learning experience! The Thrive website is a great new addition to our arsenal especially since we don’t know anyone personally who has adopted the lifestyle change we are doing. I signed us up for emails and watched the introduction video.

  41. Rachel says

    I signed up for the thrive emails! I am so thankful for your blog and all the healthy vegan recipes that you and other bloggers post! Thanks for all you do!
    P.S. I highly recommend the Thrive book! It is amazing!

  42. Kristine says

    I signed up! I didn’t know about the Thrive Forward program, so thanks for the heads-up and the giveaway! I have been wanting to try the Vega products for a long time!

  43. Shiny Happy Vegan says

    Oh I would LOVE to win the Vega stuff. Those protein bars are my fave for after long runs and I just started training for my 2nd marathon yesterday. Will go to the Thrive site now to sign up for the emails!

  44. Clara says

    I just signed up for Thrive – what a great website full of great info! I would love to win Vega products and get some more motivation for a healthy lifestyle!

  45. Nicole says

    I viewed the video and was surprised to be so impressed. I like that guy, and now I want to check out the books. Good info. I signed up to get ebook, etc. Thanks for this resource!

  46. Heather says

    I love your blog. Thanks for all the time you put in to create it and share your stories! I live in Juneau, Alaska and EVERYTHING is more expensive here because of shipping. But that’s the price to live in paradise! I watched the video and would love to win the Vega to try it out!

  47. Sarah G says

    I am going on 6 months of Dr. Fuhrman’s plan. I am thrilled with your site. It has helped reinforce my vegan – nutritarian lifestyle. Thank you!

  48. Dana W says

    Hi Carrie,

    I did it! I signed up to get emails from the program. I randomly stumbled across your website while I was searching for vegetable based salad dressings a few weeks ago and I love reading everything on your site and on facebook! I recently started a plant based diet and I am glad that I found you 🙂

    I was thinking of ordering Shakeology until I saw this post. Please pick me so I can try Vega One products!!! <3

  49. Kerry says

    I watched the video and signed up for the Thrive Forward program! I’ve always wanted to try the Vega products, and I’ve heard nothing but great things about them. I would LOVE to win this!

  50. says

    Just joined the Thrive Forward program and love the videos and supplemental materials on the site! Hoping to keep up with it and make my eating even healthier (already been a vegan for 3 years).

  51. Evolve3 says

    Watched and signed up!

    When I was abroad in Korea for 6 months I needed to make sure I was getting enough protein. I picked up Vega and my god, it was amazing! Since South Korea is predominantly a meat consuming country, I was left to fend for myself in the kitchen. Having Vega when I was there was a lifesaver.

    Now that I’m back in the States (temporarily 😉 ) I hope I can get more Vega!!

  52. cindy johnson says


    Thanks for sharing about Thrive Forward! I have signed up and look forward to reading more. Please enter me into the contest….the items look awesome!!!

    Thanks again,


  53. Crissy says

    Hi! I signed up! I love your blog and I would love to win this prize pack! This is my year to get my body in order so that I can become a MOM!


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