Top 5 Plant-Based Products at Vitacost + How to Use Them

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Blogger Marina Yanay-Triner reveals her favorite whole-food, plant-based finds at Vitacost.

Vitacost is my favorite source of plant based products because they have such a wide range available – it’s always easy to find a product I will absolutely love and use.

The following five are truly staples on a whole-food, plant based lifestyle. Not only are they delicious – they are also incredibly nutritious. Each one has a particular function in the body, and also a particular function in the delicious recipes you can incorporate them into.

What is so wonderful about this way of eating is that you do not need to sacrifice flavor or nutrition – the meals you’ll eat on this lifestyle are a perfect combination of both! The following products will help you achieve just that: delicious, nutritious and filling meals.

1. NOW Foods Golden Flax Seeds

NOW Foods Real Food™ Certified Organic Golden Flax Seeds |

Flax seeds are amazing at reducing high blood pressure, and have been shown in studies to cut stroke and heart disease risk, as well as breast cancer risk. They’re also wonderful at extending the length of a woman’s menstrual cycle, which means having fewer periods throughout your life, less estrogen exposure, and thus lower breast cancer risk. In addition, flax seeds improve cholesterol, blood sugar, blood pressure, and even help control hot flashes and reduce enlarged prostates.

They’re the best source of omega 3’s on a plant-based diet, so eating a tablespoon every single day is highly recommended.

The brown and golden flax are comparable nutritionally, but I love the flavor of the golden and thus recommend those. To get the most nutrition out of these powerhouse seeds, make sure you grind them right before eating them, and store them in the fridge.

My favorite way to eat them is in a smoothie bowl, like the one featured in this meal plan. For this combo, there’s no need to pre-grind the seeds. Simply blend with your favorite smoothie bowl ingredients, spoon into a bowl and top with fruit.

2. Foods Alive Nutritional Yeast

Foods Alive Nutritional Yeast |

Nutritional yeast has a wide range of health benefits, such as lowering cholesterol and boosting immunity.  It’s a type of deactivated yeast that’s rich in B-vitamins, protein and trace minerals like zinc, selenium, manganese and molybdenum. It also contains antioxidants that help protect the body from the damage caused by free radicals.

This powder is perfect to use in savory dishes that have a slightly cheesy flavor, such as this incredibly easy baked tofu recipe.

3. Frontier Organic Onion & Herb Seasoning Blend

Frontier Natural Products Organic Onion & Herb Seasoning Blend |

Spices are key because they help create flavorful meals. Plus, they’re healthy! These concentrated herbs contain even more antioxidants than fresh herbs.

This blend in particular is my favorite. It contains a variety of delicious spices that can make any dish stand out. If you don’t want to put together your own spice mix of several spices, this will become your go to for almost every savory dish.

My favorite way to use this amazing seasoning is in this Easy “Cheezy” Raw Vegan Lasagna recipe.

4. Shirley Bar Living Ethiopian Tahini

Shirley Bar Living Ethiopian Tahini |

Tahini is a delicious paste of ground sesame seeds. This sesame seed butter is traditionally used in Middle Eastern cuisine and is rich in calcium, zinc, iron and selenium.

However, not every store-bought tahini is created the same. My favorite, the Shirley Bar Living brand, is absolutely delicious in every way: rich, creamy and very sweet.

The best way to use tahini is to make homemade salad dressings. Ready in minutes, this creamy dill salad dressing recipe will spruce up your fresh bowl of leafy greens!

5. Westsoy Organic Unsweetened Soymilk

Westsoy Organic Unsweetened Soymilk |

Many people struggle to replace dairy milk when transitioning to a plant-based diet. Soy milk is a great option because it is still rich and creamy, due to the healthy fat in soy. Being a phytoestrogen, soy facilitates the excretion of excess estrogen from the body, making it a powerful food in breast cancer prevention. It’s rich in iron, zinc, and protein.

Soy milk is extremely versatile. It is delicious in tea and smoothie bowls, and it is also a great addition to dessert recipes, such as these no-bake peanut butter bars.