Thursday, June 26, 2014

Food: West Coast Road Trip

I think it's about time I brought back food posts, don't you think?  You may not know this but I became a certified personal trainer a few months ago and am current a student with Institute for Integrative Nutrition where I am studying to be a certified health coach.  By no means do I plan on turning this blog into all about my business but I would live for the two do sorta compliment one another! My business is called Lifting Lettuce. To read a bit more about it you can click the "Lifting Lettuce" link above! You can also use the links to the right to visit my Tumblr, Pinterest, Facebook etc  I really appreciate any support and love I receive!

Anyway. As I've mentioned before I recently took a West Coast road trip with my husband (and pup!) from San Diego, CA to Vancouver Island, BC, Canada...and back. On this trip, we ate a lot of awesome veg-friendly food (since I'm vegan, my husband is vegetarian...and our dog is mostly vegan haha). For me, traveling is a great time to try new foods and new restaurants!

I definitely allowed myself to indulge a fair bit on this trip but tried to get a lot of healthy meals in too.

I always bring a few grocery items on road trips so here I had bread, almond butter and musli from home which I used to make breakfast at our motel (which had a free breakfast, it just wasn't vegan friendly/very healthy).
This was such a good meal! It's Jack Sprats in Cottage Grove, OR. This place was great! It seemed very laid back, you could see into the kitchen, extra seating upstairs. They even had a kids area set up where they could play quietly and we thought that was a great idea. I had a quinoa salad that had the BEST fried coconut crusted tofu. I also had their freshly made kombucha which was delicious.

We visited Slappy Cakes in Portland, OR with my BIL at his suggestion. What a cool place! You can have the kitchen made your pancakes or DIY! There's a grill right on the table. I had them make mine because she told me the vegan pancakes work better on some grills than others (and not so well on the one we had) and they were SO good. You pick your batter and what to add to it, toppings etc They also serve some other breakfast meals and sides. I'd go here again! Fun place to bring guests for sure.

I'm a huge craft beer fan. I really enjoyed Deschutes Brewery in Portland, OR. They had so many tasty beers!

Spicy guacamole on toast at my brother in laws place.

This was a vegan Chinese restaurant called Vegetarian House located in Chinatown Portland. It was rated as the best Chinese restaurant in the US, I believe? So on a whim my husband and I decided to try it. I got the buffet and while it was good, it wasn't as good as I'd hoped for (for really good vegan Chinese food, I recommend in Seattle, WA!). It was super oily, I didn't like the fake beef and yeah... bit disappointing. 

Because you can't go to Portland and not get (vegan) VooDoo Doughnuts! I was so looking forward to having these again but they kind of disappointed. I mean, they were good but we made the mistake of not getting coffee with them so it was just sugar overload. That's nothing against VooDoo though!

I was craving vegan pizza and had noticed this place, Sizzle Pie, had high reviews on Yelp (I use Yelp a TON on road trips) so we paid it a visit. The service wasn't very good... there are no waiters but the guy ringing us up was not friendly whatsoever. Still, they have lots of vegan options and the pizza was SO good so I would still go back, haha.

Another Portland favourite is Rogue Brewery. I ordered some happy hour apps which happened to be vegan and they were very good! 

Husband and I picked up groceries at Trader Joes when we left Portland and brought them to my inlaws place in WA. I was craving veggies big time!

Vegan burrito at Blue Agave Mexican Grill. It's no Chipotle but it was really tasty. ;)

I tried Field Roast sausages for the first time... yum!! This was a meal I grilled at my inlaws place.

Borrowed my MIL's Ninja blender to make a smoothie and paired it with another salad.

This restaurant, Lele, has pretty bad reviews on Yelp but we decided to try it anyway. I believe it's Thai Vietnamese so the foods weren't what I was used to. For example, their curries contained cows milk instead of coconut milk. Our server was very friendly and they were very accommodating for vegans! My meal was really delicious but my husband said his (pineapple fried rice) wasn't very good. I was also given a bad glass of coconut juice... I had a sip and it tasted way off so I let the server know and they brought me a new one. I didn't notice if they still charged me for it or not. I think I would eat here again. It's located right next to the movie theater so it's convenient! 

We picked up more groceries at Fred Meyers while in WA. They have a lot of vegan foods! Here I made a tofu scramble wrap.

I don't see Coconut Bliss in stores much here so I couldn't resist it when I spotted it in Fred Meyers! Mmmm. 

This is from the Duncan Garage Cafe in Duncan, BC, Canada. It didn't exist when I lived there but I make sure to go now whenever I visit! The cafe is veg-friendly and very healthy...everything I've had there has been delicious. They have a small menu and then lots of bakery stuff and some pre-made meals. Inside Duncan Garage there is also a great health foods grocery and a used bookstore. How awesome is that? Oh and this wrap was amazing.

I really wish I could remember what this brand of chicken patties was because it was so yummy. I got them at Fred Meyers. My mom had one and said she forgot it wasn't real chicken, haha.

One thing I love about Vancouver Island, BC, Canada is all of the support for local business' including farms. This was a a tea farm...called Tea Farm hehe in Cowichan Valley, BC, Canada. We tried their sample of the day and each bought some fresh tea. They have over 100 to choose from! They were so knowledgeable and friendly, we chatted with one of the owners for quite a while. They also do sit down tea time featuring their tea and baked goods made from teas. 

Tofu scramble with Tofurkey sausage and toast topped with Tofuti cream cheese. I definitely consumed quite a few processed vegan products on this trip... to the point where when I got home I did a "cleanse" and am cutting way back. Delicious but just not as healthy IMO.

This coffee was SO good. I got it at Barkley Cafe in Ucluelet, BC, Canada. They sell their coffee beans and now I wish I'd bought some!

Another local farm we visited in Cowichan Valley, BC, Canada was Silverside Winery where they make their own berry wines! I wasn't too familiar with berry wine but fell in love with this blackberry once. It was quite strong at 18.5% but still sweet.

Grilled food!

Used blueberries from my mom's garden to make my go to pancake recipe.

Rhubarb grows in abundance back home unlike here in SoCal so I was very excited to make a strawberry rhubarb pie! My favourite! The strawberries were out of my moms garden! I used this recipe and it was so good! The crust was homemade too, I just forget what recipe I used.

Tim Hortons coffee and bagel. I used my own Tofutti cream cheese. hehe

We stopped at Native Foods Cafe in Portland OR. We have one at home but this is actually the location that we first discovered it at. Delicious, as always. It's probably my favourite chain restaurant. I had the macro salad and got the zucchini date bread for later. I'd had both before but they are so yummy.

Pizza! This was at Cafe New Day in Port Angeles, WA. We took the ferry from Victoria BC to Port Angeles and this was close by. Everything had that home cooked feel to it which was nice. Nothing fancy but tasty!

Blondie's Bistro in Grants Pass was very veg friendly (labelled things on their menu), good service and a full bar. I'd definitely go back here. My food was sooo good!  

This was The Plum Bakery in Sacramento, CA. All vegan. I got the tuna melt which was made with jackfruit and it was a bit heavy on the vegan cheese but still soo good. And the pb mint brownie was amazing! The ambience of the place was a bit dingy but we got takeout and I ate back at our hotel so it was fine. I'd definitely order from here again!

I grabbed these on our long drive home at who knows where haha


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