Raw Vegan Food

Raw Vegan MealI love summer. There is such an abundance of wonderful, fresh food to eat. Shopping at the farmers market is a joy at this time of year. We often have to restrain ourselves from buying more food than we can possibly eat in a week. And the fruit...

We've had a few people write and ask us if we eat raw. For the most part, the answer to that question is no. From what we've read, there are nutritional reasons to eat both raw and cooked foods. And I don't think I'd want to give up lentil stew and freshly baked bread, and the many other yummy things Jane cooks for dinner. But we do eat raw sometimes too, especially in the summer when Jane makes all kind of delicious salads.

For dinner tonight we did have a raw meal. Jane made her hummus with carrots and persian cucumbers, red cabbage slaw, and our usual green salad. We also had sliced tomatoes from our garden. And for dessert, we had blueberries, strawberries, and white nectarines. Overall, a really delicious meal, and raw to boot.


Note:  Thanks to Sparrow, who pointed out that our hummus isn't raw (who knew?).  Well,  I googled “raw hummus” and found that raw hummus recipes seem to include sprouted chickpeas, as opposed to canned chickpeas (which we assumed were simply picked, processed and put in a can with some water and salt (and preservatives in some).  But it appears that many raw vegans shoot for 75% raw, so if you go by that criteria, we still had a "raw" vegan meal.  Anyway, sorry for any confusion this may have caused!  Hopefully this clears up any confusion. -- Lane


  1. Technically not a raw meal unless Jane made raw, sprouted hummus. But, oh man!!! What a spread! I am drooling, just looking at the photo! You guys eat like royalty!

    (And I haven’t looked at the link yet, but I do agree with you. There are some foods that are more nutritious cooked. But it’s good to get a high percentage of raw fruits and vegetables in your diet, that’s for sure!)

    Thanks for another great blog post. I feel inspired to go by the Farmer’s Market tomorrow and put together my own raw feast now!

  2. Hi Sparrow,
    You learn something new every day. I googled “raw hummus” and found that raw hummus recipes seem to include sprouted chickpeas, as opposed to canned chickpeas (which we assumed were simply picked, processed and put in a can with some water and salt (and preservatives in some).
    Jane’s very happy with your comment that we eat like royalty, and she’s been telling me how well she takes care of me, and how lucky I am!
    Did you go to the farmers market? Did you pick up anything yummy?

  3. You should totally listen to Jane. She treats you so well; never take that for granted!

    Yeah, pretty much anything canned is cooked because that’s part of the canning process.

    The farmer’s market doesn’t open until 4:30 p.m. so I haven’t been over there yet. I’m pretty stoked to go since it will be the first day since the market opened that I actually have some money to go over there and buy anything. (Financial aid check just came in. It’s been a very dry year living just on disability checks without that extra money. I’m so glad to be back in school again!)

  4. I’m intrigued by the raw lifestyle. I think it’s a very healthy way to go and I aim to eat something raw everyday. I don’t always succeed, but I try 🙂

    One of the cool things about raw recipes is that they’re virtually always vegan and they’re also something new and different. I get tired of the same, old thing over and over. So getting creative with nutrient-dense, raw foods is fun.

    The easiest way to add raw foods to your diet is simply to have a veggie salad at every dinner. Another easy way is to include fresh fruit smoothies to your diet.

  5. I only wish it were as cheap as it is easy to increase the amount of raw food in one’s diet! I’m getting a lot more raw food right now because I have a little extra money for a while but when that runs out it’s back to food-as-usual which is heavy on the cooked beans and grains (because they’re cheap) and most fruits and veggies from the freezer section (the best compromise between cost and health) with a little bit from fresh, depending on what’s been put on sale.

    Last week I got three entire cantaloupes for $1. That was amazing! I wish there were always sales that great.

  6. Hi Elaine,
    Thanks for the suggestions.
    Agreed… There are few raw recipes taht aren’t vegan (steak tartare and sashimi come to mind). We always eat a large green salad with dinner at home and often when we eat out. But the main components of our meals are usually cooked… grains, beans, steamed veggies…
    As for variety, Jane has remarked that she cannot keep up with the recipes she’s finding, either in all the new cookbooks that we come across and the recipes she finds on the internet.

    Hi Sparrow,
    That’s part of why we love our farmers market. We find some things are much less expensive (not all though, you have to know your prices). For example, the head of red cabbage cost us $1. It runs around $0.79/pound in the grocery store and it was over 4 pounds!

  7. Lucky you; it’s the opposite here. I just spent $15 for vegetables I could have gotten for half that at the grocery store. But at least these were local vegetables and freshly picked today. Still, that was a real luxury and I probably won’t be going back to the farmer’s market again this year.

    I was spoiled by the farmer’s market where I grew up. The one out here bites.

  8. Hi Sparrow,
    I guess, being that we’re so close to many farms keeps our prices more modest. Although when the supermarket has things on sale, they are usually significantly less expensive than
    Sorry that your farmers market bites, but I have read that frozen produce is very good nutritionally. So if you don’t mind the non-local thing…

  9. Southern California farmer’s markets are unlike most farmer’s markets in the rest of the country because of the proximity to Mexico. It tends to be more of a peso-to-dollar thing than a close-to-many-farms thing.

    It could be worse: I could live in rural Alaska.

  10. Hi Sparrow,
    I’m not really sure what the proximity to Mexico has to do with the price of produce. The farmers at our farmers market are all based locally in California. But I do agree with you that we have it better than most of the rest of the country. (Spoiled, I know!)

  11. “it appears that many raw vegans shoot for 75% raw”

    Do you have any names or URLs to pass along? All I’ve seen is the “cooked food is poison” stuff and would love to read some articles and/or essays from a more moderate viewpoint.

    When they aim for 75% raw, is that 75% by food weight or by calories or by some other measure? Thanks!

  12. Hi Sparrow,
    Since we’re not “raw” vegans, we haven’t spent much time researching the topic… however here are a few links that appear to be more moderate.

    The first, Living and Raw Foods provided us with this definition:
    “What is a Living Foodist or Raw Foodist?
    A person who eats 75% or more living/raw food.. The more, the better. Optimally one should eat 100% raw and living foods if it feels right for them.”
    Vegan Society
    Raw Veg Info.

    As for how the food is measured… I’m not sure how the 75% is quantified by most people, but when I looked around last time, it was percentage of calories.

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