Vegan Challenge – Day 5 & 6 – Lentil Chili and Corn Muffins!

Can I start off with a mini-rant? I am somewhat annoyed and offended at people who assume that eating vegan means being deprived, or eating bland unsatisfying foods. This is not the case, even when I was eating eggs and bacon every weekend, some of the best foods I had ever tasted have been vegan and/or raw.  Ok, I’m done.

Monday was a rough day for me because for some reason I could not sleep Sunday night.  But still, without enough sleep, I went to the 9am boot camp class at my gym then headed down to Melissa’s for a lesson on website building and maintenance (I’m doing better now! Thanks Melissa).

When I got home after my “classes” I made a lentil chili and vegan gluten-free corn muffins.  Both recipes come from the Forks Over Knives website, but I altered them to my liking. I will link to their recipes and put my version below.

Gluten-Free Vegan Corn Muffins

Lentil Chili and Gluten-free, Vegan Corn Muffin

1 1/2 TB. chia seeds (easier than flaxseed because you don’t have to ground it!)
1 cup unsweetened plain coconut milk
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/2 cup 100% pure maple syrup
1 cup corn meal
1 cup Jeanne’s Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flour Mix (from *I love this baking mix! It makes the best “normal” tasting/textured gluten-free foods!
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup frozen corn kernels, thawed

1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
2. In a small bowl, combine chia with coconut milk and set aside to allow it to gel for 5 minutes.
3. In a large mixing bowl, stir applesauce and maple syrup together and add in chia/coconut milk mixture. Then in a separate smaller bowl mix all dry ingredients together thoroughly (corm meal, baking mix, baking powder, baking soda, salt). Then sift in the dry mixture with the wet mixture. Stir until well-combined, but avoid over-mixing. Add in the corn kernels.
4. Either using a silicone 12-cup muffin pan or a 12-cup muffin pan lined with paper, spoon out equal portions of batter into the cups.
5. Bake for 20 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the center. Serve warm.

Lentil Chili

1 1/2 cups yellow onion, chopped
1 cup carrots, shredded
1 cup bell pepper, chopped
1 large zucchini, chopped
1 cup mushrooms, quartered
1-2 garlic cloves, minced
6 cups vegetable broth
2 cups water
1  TB. chili or chipolte powder
1 TB. cumin
1 tsp. paprika
Dash cayenne powder
2 cups green lentils, rinsed
1 (28-oz.) can crushed tomatoes
1 (15-oz.) can kidney beans

1. In a large soup pot over medium-high heat, sauté onion, celery, carrots, bell pepper, and garlic in 1 cup of the vegetable broth. Stir occasionally and
cook until vegetables soften, approximately 5-7 minutes.
2. Add chili powder, cumin, paprika, and cayenne pepper and cook for an additional minute, stirring well.
3. Add lentils, crushed tomatoes, kidney beans, and remaining vegetable broth and 2 cups water into the soup pot. Cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat and simmer until lentils are soft, approximately 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.
4. Taste and add spice according to preference.
**Get creative! Soups and stews are a fun way to add in veggies you have on hand that you don’t know what to do with, or that are close to expiring. I think adding fresh organic chopped parsley, leeks, black beans, green bell pepper, celery or any other item you love will make it even more enjoyable!


Dirty Details

I did not sleep Monday night either, so I am calling it quits for the night  and letting myself get a long night of sleep (hopefully) tonight!  I am not sure if the veganism has to do with my inability to sleep or if it’s just the excitement of getting my website up and running and all the new things on my “to-do” list.  Either way, I do not feel bad,  light-headed, or protein deprived, which is what so many people have warned me about. I think I am doing vegan right, getting plenty of plant-based protein, and loads of vegetables!

What I ate

Tofu scramble with potatoes and black beans from New Leaf’s  hot bar, after the gym
An apple Pure Bar
Columbia Gorge Organic Blueberry Smoothie Drink
Lentil chili and one corn muffin

My usual morning smoothie. 1 cup liquid (coconut milk, almond milk, juice, or combo of those) 2-3 frozen strawberries, less than 1/4 cup frozen raspberries, about 1/8 cup frozen blueberries, and a table spoon of gelatinized maca root powder, and my absolute favorite protein powder by Lifetime called Life’s Basics plant based protein, only I use the one with a black lid, it is unsweetened, the sweetened uses stevia and is super sweet.

Some of a basil pesto potato salad I made before starting my 30 Day Vegan Challenge. Use the same recipe for the pesto as I used on the  pasta from my day 2-3 post and put over steamed potatoes.

A raw, vegan, gluten-free cookie that I got from a friend at work, called Kookie Karma - SO FLIPPIN’ GOOD!  You have to try them if you get a chance, I am particular to the ChocoLot one, which is like a chocolate chocolate chip cookie.

Dinner will be leftover lentil chili and a corn muffin – yum!



  1. Miriam Diaz says:

    Hi Sara! thanks for all the gf recipes. I look forward to trying my hand at some. So would you say that the Jeanne’s mix is the best? Is there anything similar that is sold here locally?


  1. [...] My usual smoothie, which I describe here. [...]

  2. [...] but something about it doesn’t make me want to eat it again and again, like I did with the Lentil Chili. So my husband is going to stop by a local taqueria on his way home from work and pick up dinner [...]

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