A view from the road. Driving through Eucalyptus Trees. Heavenly.
Lake Tahoe, blanketed in a layer of smoke from the Yosemite fire.
We just got back from a successful (vegan, mostly raw) trip up to Lake Tahoe. I’m surprised at how easy it was to stay 100% vegan (not an option for me to nudge that one) and at least 75% raw. All it required was a little pre-planning and packing a few tools.
The big challenge for this trip was having very little packing space. We were driving in a small two-seater that has a trunk about the size of a suitcase. It’s amazing how many clothes you can leave behind when healthy food is a priority. A small insulated lunch box in the car filled with energy bars, bananas, sliced apples and water did the trick while we were on the road.
In anticipation for this trip, I bought a Nutri Bullet. I have been dying to try one out to see if it lived up to the hype. The Magic Bullet has let me down a bit for green drinks. I liked it so much, I am going to get another one and do a give away for you! Stay tuned.
I was impressed by the Nutri Bullet. You can pick one up for about 100.00 and it’s worth every penny. It does a decent job with greens, makes great smoothies (although small batches), good cashew creams, and if you just need to grind some oats into flour, or grind up some flax seeds, it is fantastic. I am finding that for some small jobs in the kitchen, I grab the Nutri Bullet instead of my Vitamix. (That said, I could not live without my Vitamix. )
I am eating almost all gluten free these days which can be even harder than vegan when traveling. I try to stay away from processed foods and the gluten free choices in the store frighten me with their extended lists of non-nutritious ingredients. I do like Rudis Gluten Free Spinach Tortillas because they don’t have a laundry list of ingredients. I can stuff them with a ton of raw ingredients when I want something more than a salad.
One of the keys to our success was doing a little advance research. I found quite a few restaurants that served vegan and even raw food! Simple Bliss Cafe turned out to be a favorite in South Tahoe. When ordering vegan food out, we found that we still had to be really careful about making sure it was healthy vegan food. My sweetie ordered a lentil loaf that was supposed to mimic meatloaf and they deep fried each piece. Really? Was that necessary?
All in all, we had a wonderful trip, sans the smoke from the Yosemite fire, and were able to eat healthy the whole time. It didn’t take much effort and it was wonderful having the extra energy that eating this way gives us!
10 Travel Tips
1. Do some advance planning. Happy Cow.net is a great place to start. You can plug in a city and they will come up with a good selection of restaurants where you can find vegan food. I would also do a search for vegan and raw food in the city where you are going. That simple step gave us a list of restaurants in South Tahoe and we were not disappointed.
2. Prepare some of your favorite, easy travel foods. Some of my favorites are linked at the end of this post.
3. Plan to make the grocery store one of your first stops.
4. See if your room has a fridge. If not, a small ice chest will do in a pinch.
5. If you have a gathering to go to, eat before you go. It helps, believe me.
6. I love taking healthy tortillas. It is so easy to load a wrap with fresh, raw food. An easy way to make a meal.
7. Make sure you are drinking a lot water. Very important, especially when traveling.
8. If you can’t find restaurants that do serve vegan, call ahead and see if a restaurant you choose can accommodate. Sometimes just an advanced call will do wonders!
9. Look for menus on-line. It is a great way to see if you can “create” a vegan / raw meal in a non-vegan restaurant.
10. If you are flying, pre-pack some food in your carry-on. It comes in very handy when those snack carts are going by.
Some of my favorite travel recipes: