Vegan & Gluten-free Yoga Retreat Menu

Last weekend I had a fully vegan & gluten-free yoga retreat. I am good to cook vegetarian meals all weekend with a fully-stocked kitchen and no recipes or planning, but with these extra dietary restrictions I had to do a little prep. I went to the grocery store to see what looked fresh and what was on sale then came home and put a menu together based on what I had. I typed it all up and printed it out so I could follow a plan and stay ahead of the retreat by always cooking a meal ahead… cooking lunch while they’re eating breakfast, making dinner while they’re eating lunch, and prepping ahead for breakfast while they enjoy their dinner. The menu did vary slightly as I saw that I had planned too many sides in a single meal or that I needed to use something up, etc. The menu included here is updated, however.

I post pictures a lot on Instagram and Facebook and friends are always asking for recipes. The following aren’t really recipes since I cook-by-feel, but I have included a mostly accurate picture of what’s included in most things. These meals are really like outlines that can be filled in with what’s available – use the herbs, veggies, fruit, beans, nuts, oils, spices – that you already have. You learn to cook by cooking. Delicious creations begin by experimenting. The keys to cooking for me are:

  • Everything is delicious (and easy) roasted
  • Almost always, add salt
  • It’s amazing what a quick squeeze of lemon juice will do for anything green
  • Meals should be colorful, filling, and have lots of fiber
  • Use your imagination to use up leftovers: rice from last night becomes rice pudding the next day, dressing becomes the base of a soup, beans become bean salad or soup or dip, old salad goes into kichari for a different flavor, left over veggies get chopped up and added to cabbage for a slaw…

Without further ado… 6 vegan, gluten-free meals served on this weekend’s retreat:

  1. Dinner

*Tacos (corn tortillas, Mexican spiced walnut meat, lettuce, pico de gallo, cashew cream, avocado, sriracha, cilantro, chive, avocado)
*Rice & Beans (pinto beans, garlic, olive oil, yellow onion, white rice, cumin, cayenne, salt, topped with jalapeno)
*Spinach Salad (spinach, tomato, sunflower seeds, roasted pepper, fresh mushrooms) topped with Green Goddess dressing (avocado, lemon juice, olive oil, apple cider vinegar, basil, cilantro, parsley, chive)
*Pico de gallo (tomato, onion, cilantro, salt, lime juice)
*Plantains roasted in coconut oil
*Tangerine Fizz (sparkling water, fresh-squeezed tangerine juice, a sprig of fresh mint, crushed ice, stirred)

2. Breakfast

*Turmeric & cinnamon steel cut oats with pan fried apples (with coconut oil, cinnamon & agave) + Almond Milk
*Fresh fruit salad (banana, apple, plum, grapes, raspberries, blackberries)
Rice cake with peanut butter, banana slices, raspberries, kiwi, chia seeds
*Ginger, lemon, agave tea
*Coffee & Tea + Almond Milk



3. Lunch

*Green Goddess Soup (spinach, zucchini, avocado, fresh herbs, chive, salt, pepper, yellow onion, garlic, the rest of the dressing from last night’s salad) topped with fried carrot bits
*Broccoli slaw (broccoli stems, carrot, cashews, red onion, olive oil, cilantro, lime juice, salt, pepper)
*Baked sweet potato loaded with wilted spinach, crispy spiced garbanzo beans, cashew cream
*Strawberry Juice
*Almond stuffed dates


4. Dinner (Definitely my favorite meal of the weekend)

*Slow roasted pineapple, onion, baby peppers, cabbage (all with olive oil and salt) topped with a ginger, peanut, tahini, lemon, garlic sauce (wow!)
*Mashed potato stuffed mushroom caps
*Aromatic green salad with lots of fresh herbs with tomato
*Quinoa (garlic, onion, salt, olive oil)
*Dark chocolate, ginger, and agave                                                    





5. Breakfast

*Kichari (lentils, rice, coconut oil, biryani masala, cumin seed, mustard seed – a complete protein!) with soaked nuts & dried fruit (chopped prune, raisin, almonds, peanuts, sunflower seeds). Hands-down one of my favorite meals, btw.
*Rice cake with avocado & tomato, salt
*Crispy fried potato carrot, onion, and garlic
*Blueberry banana shake
*Coffee & Tea, Almond Milk


6. Lunch

*Veggie chili (pintos, black beans, stewed tomatoes, cumin, sriracha, maple syrup) topped with avocado, cashew cream, and chive
*Left-over cold rice and beans turned into a salad with apple, red onion, basil, cilantro, salt, and black pepper
*Spinach wilted in the ginger tahini sauce from the night before, then tossed with lemon juice
*Tortilla chips & pico de gallo (from tacos the first night, though I did add to it)
*Left-over roasted pineapple
*Pink lemonade (crushed raspberries & blackberries, lemon juice, agave, water – all stirred and poured over ice)
*Almond joy bliss balls (coconut oil, cacao powder, chopped dates and almonds, coconut shreds – all combined and rolled into little balls with an extra roll in just coconut)… not pictured 🙁

And perhaps my favorite part of all of this was the sweet card these three ladies left for me… 

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