Friday, July 29, 2016

VEGAN Organic Chocolate Hazelnut Spread and GIVEAWAY!

Remember Nutella? That chocolate hazelnut spread that literally every person I have ever met loved and ate like a million jars of in their lifetime? Well, for vegans, we haven't really had anything like that. Justin's brand has a nice chocolate hazelnut spread, but it is their own, does not taste like anything else, and definitely does not taste like Nutella.

Then I was approached by a company named Rigoni di Asiago, and had no idea what they were sending me in the mail until it arrived. See, I get a TON of emails every day from companies asking me to try their products (and if I were to say yes to every single email, all I'd be doing is writing reviews every second of my life), so when they are certified vegan and I'm pressed for time, I'm like sure send it and I kind of half-read the email about Nocciolata...woops! So I thought it was vegan jams (I'm like, oh that's cool - I'll give it a try; something different), then it arrived and I realized what it was and I was like...WHAAAAAT, SAY WHAAAAAT...this is VEGAN NUTELLA right here! Wake up, KATIE, wake up! They sent you the world's only vegan Nutella, to your knowledge, and it is ORGANIC and certified vegan and freaking AMAZING!!! Not only does Nocciolata taste exactly like that other non-vegan stuff that I already mentioned too many time than I should have, but it tastes BETTER! I cannot stress this enough. You all know me, you know when I dig something, when it is just okay, and when I'm like over-the-moon wanting to marry it...So here it is, Nocciolata, will you marry me and make me the happiest woman alive??

Here are the specs on the product, to be technical...

"Made with organic ingredients completely free of GMO's, preservatives, colors, additives, or artificial sweeteners, Rigoni di Asiago's Nocciolata Dairy Free combines hazelnuts, cocoa and cocoa butter, natural vanilla extract, and raw cane sugar for a chocolate-hazelnut spread with undeniably superior flavor. Nocciolata Dairy Free is like a vegan, organic, better-for-you Nutella, made with environmentally-responsible cold-pressed sunflower oil. It also contains far less sugar than other brands and is free from hydrogenated fats"

Rigoni di Asiago also makes amazing fruit spreads called Fiordifrutta. The company has confirmed that they are vegan - pectin is an ingredient, but I'm told it is vegan, so fruit pectin - and they taste fresh and just really delicious. This company has impressed me more than any food products company has, in a long time.

I have been eating copious amounts of this Nocciolata and haven't gained a pound, not one. It is rather amazing, but I know why. This is an organic product made with pure ingredients that my body can recognize...and my body is absorbing this nutrient rich treat and I'm smiling like a nut! I hope you noticed that pun because I work rather arduously trying to be funny.

Here's the fun...oh I'm no rub-it-in-your-face'r...I'm gonna GIVE one LUCKY reader TWO jars of Nocciolata and TWO jars of Fiordifrutta (for the two jars of fruit spreads, you pick the flavors you want - Apricot, Strawberry, Peach, Wild Berries, Wild Blueberry, Raspberry, Cranberry, Lingonberry, Lemon, Seville Orange, Cherry, Organic Fruit Spread Cherry, Blackberry, Black Currant, Fig, Pomegranate, Pink Grapefruit, or Pear)!

TO WIN the GIVEAWAY: all you have to do is RT my giveaway Tweet on Twitter that has the link to this blog post. You MUST be following me on Twitter. Winner will be chosen and announced on August 10th after Midnight, so RT and Like and Tweet about it until then! Rules: must be U.S. resident, must follow me on Twitter (@theDirtyVegan), must RT my tweet with the link to this blog post in it, to be eligible to win.

Let's tell the world about this amazing vegan Nocciolata!

Friday, June 24, 2016

Hellooooo, Ink Nurse!

Lots of us vegans have tattoos. It just is. So whether you are looking for aftercare directly after getting your fresh tattoo, a cream to keep it hydrated and nourished or just a daily moisturizing cream, I think I've found the product for you!

Cruelty-free (that's right, NEVER tested on animals, just on humans), vegan, organic and earth-friendly ingredients, Ink Nurse is a fantastic remedy cream for tattoos and for the skin in general...and I am mad that this was not available when I got my tattoos! Especially since it is only $20 for a 100ml jar! Sweeeet.

So I wanted to try this cream out for a while before writing about it, and I'm glad that I did because it has been proving great on my skin. Here I chose to photograph one of my tattoos. This one is the oldest and my first tattoo and is located on my ankle. This one could appear the most faded, that's why I chose to use the cream on this one for test purposes.

There's a funny little story about this tattoo. I was 13 years old and my older cousin had gotten a bottle of India Ink. He gave it to me, and I did a homemade tattoo on myself...of a boy's initials who I was seeing at the time. Yes, I know...DUMB, DUMB, DUMB. So, when my mom finally found out, she flipped out and was mad about it every single day. Then when I was 15 years old, we went on vacation to a beach town in Maine. There was this really cool tattoo parlor and I had convinced my mom that if she signed for me for a tattoo to cover this boy's initials (who I was now no longer seeing), that she wouldn't be so mad anymore. She agreed. I got this rose tattoo with my name, "Katie" on it and it is still my favorite. The tattoo artist was awesome, this cool old guy, he reminded me of Steven Tyler, and knew everything there was about tattoos.

Here is the "before" putting Ink Nurse on my rose tattoo...

Here is the "after" and as you can see, visible difference and improvement. It doesn't look brand new, because it is like a 20 year old ink, but it looks pretty decent right? Imagine what this cream can do on a fresh tat.

And I love the philosophy over at Ink Nurse. This is how they describe their company and brand:

"Anti-authoritarian, untamed and reckless, we exist to disrupt the industry that has been plagued by products without integrity and quality. Besides, we love animals, human beings (most of them) and Mother Nature. So we put it all together and created Ink Nurse. A badass, ethical, cruelty-free, product that no one else compares to when it comes to tattoo skin care. Our core ingredients are special because they revitalize and rejuvenate existing faded ink pigmentation, eliminate itching, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, free radical reduction, rich source of vitamins A, C & D, softens skin and restores elasticity and has wonderful healing properties for just about any skin irritation under the sun! Our brand and product are second-to-none. It's not cool to harm your bodies, Mother Nature and its inhabitants. Now you have a choice of a high-end product with a positive ethos!"

Very cool! So check them out at

And for now, the Dirty Vegan is signing off. I hope your day smells like roses...just NOT 20 year old roses, those wouldn't smell nice at all after all that time! Byeeee!

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Fab Glasses: Get the Designer Look NOT the High Price Tag!

Sometimes when I see celebrities and famous people wearing cool eyewear, I wonder to myself, how can I do that without breaking the bank? I especially like the recent trend of the Great Gatsby era style sunglasses. I noticed that celebrities like Leonardo DiCaprio and others were wearing these super cool looking shades, so I looked them up online. 

photo courtesy of Christian Roth

photo courtesy of Pinterest

The designers that celebrities are wearing were going to cost me at least 100 bucks and the really costly designers were closer to $500 per pair! I can't do that sort of thing, not many of us can. Then I discovered GlassesShop, a way to order all sorts of glasses online, both sunglasses and prescription glasses, in the specific styles that I crave, the ones that all the celebs are rocking, for such a reasonable price that I cannot even believe it myself!

Get the look I'm wearing! Sans round in tortoise/black style: 

Thanks to GlassesShop, I got these glasses in the Great Gatsby style that I wanted that is similar to the ones that I spied online that cost over $200! And let me tell you, I am someone who has the costly designer brands as well, and these rival those pairs, in quality and style. They arrived neatly wrapped in a cleaning cloth, inside of a sturdy and slim eyeglasses case. I really like the case too. These are some NICE sunnies! I love them!

If you visit and use this code at checkout (GSHOT50), my readers will receive 50% off ... even prescription sunglasses! That's eyeglasses and sunglasses with free frames, but it does exclude frames already on sale. 

So, if you are in need of a new pair, check out GlassesShop! And for now, the Dirty Vegan is signing off. I hope your day is Leonardo DiCaprio cool.


Do ya'll remember Bugles? You know those tiny little crunchy cornucopias that were pretty darn tasty and extremely addictive? Now imagine that you want a natural and vegan option. Well, look no further! Here I present to you... Laiki rice crackers!

These light and delicious crispy crackers are ONLY 3 ingredients! Rice, oil, salt - that's it! These scrumptious snacks are also 100 percent whole grain, gluten-free, non-GMO, all natural and vegan of course!

Hoda Kotb raved on the Today Show, about how she's eating these snacks by the bagful. I can totally see why! These are so yummy and it is really hard to stop at just a handful of these, yet I feel completely guilt-free after eating them. Plus, they remind me of healthy Bugles soooo... see there is nothing that us vegans can't have!

And for now, the Dirty Vegan is signing off. I hope you all have a crunchy day... you know I will!

Friday, May 27, 2016

Road Trip Snacks...but Actually Healthy!

I want to talk about road trip snacks. I love going on road trips. The fun car ride, the new sights and stops in different places, listening to great tunes (say hello to my themed playlists!), it is all really exciting to me. Except for one tiny thing... I always feel bogged down by the snacks. No matter how healthy you try to be, you are doomed with too much processed junk and salt. These munchies are yummy to eat, but often leave my body craving real, whole foods, which are hard to pack, store and eat on the road.

I was wishing that I could find something healthy and portable for all of my summer road trips... besides the obvious choice of bananas. Sometimes a girl craves some broccoli and kale, but how do you bring that on a road trip?

Here is the answer! Brad's Raw! I've always loved their kale chips, but they recently sent me their latest flavors PLUS their super scrumptious Broccoli Poppers... and I am so impressed and also relieved that I now have a way to eat my favorite veggies and superfoods while on the road!

Let's talk about what is going on over at Brad's these days...

Brad's Raw has new flavors now, making their kale chips variety one of the biggest and most interesting. Their kale chips come in the following flavors: Naked, Frank Sriracha, Nasty Hot, Vampire Killer and Nacho. They offer all sorts of raw chips as well as their latest addition to the product line, the Broccoli Poppers.

Before I get into the Broccoli Poppers, I just want to talk about the flavors of Brad's Raw kale chips that were newest to me. I have always loved Vampire Killer and the name explains it all - garlic, garlic, and more garlic - but if you are going on a road trip with Johhny Depp, I'd suggest skipping this flavor. Nacho is cheesy and delicious, almost everyone loves it. I tried Nasty Hot and Frank Sriracha for the first time...and they were really good, but know that Frank is a lot hotter than Nasty, which I had initially guessed would have been the other way around. Very yummy.

As you can see, wholesome and simple ingredients in this portable snack food!

Broccoli Poppers were surprising to me, and I will tell you why. I didn't think that I would find snacking on broccoli as enjoyable as popping potato chips, but I definitely did! I felt zero guilt after indulging in them and actually felt energized, proving that you can eat healthy on a road trip. Both of the flavors were great, the cheesy one and the spicy one, and I would recommend giving it a try if you are looking for an alternative to the more junky snack that are on the market.

And for now, the Dirty Vegan is signing off. I hope you have a broccoli poppin' day!

Thursday, May 26, 2016

The New and Improved Zevia!

I didn't think it was possible to get any better than Zevia has always been, but they managed to outdo even themselves, now making them arguably the best soda on the market...period.

No GMO! They are officially Non-GMO Project Verified!

No caramel color! They are clear in fact!

Stevia and monk fruit sweetened, making Zevia a healthy soda that is also waistline-friendly!

Wearing my Zevia tank top! Had it for a while now and it is still my favorite.

I have always adored Zevia, but began to love them even more when I found out that they were also fans of mine! These days, with their new formula and look, I am quite smitten in deed, some would say head over heels even.

Some of my favorite flavors that are pictured at the top of the page, are:

ginger root beer - so good, you'll never want another root beer again unless it is a Zevia!

caffeine-free cola - when you've had WAY too much caffeine for one day, but would really enjoy the taste of a nice cold cola.

ginger ale - my go-to whenever my tummy is not feeling great... and it always does the trick!

cola - you will become addicted to this cola... plus it has just enough caffeine zip to give me a kick in the ass, but without the jitters.

grape - finally a grape soda that I don't have to feel guilty about after drinking it! No harmful dyes and sans a week's worth of sugar. Love it!

cream soda - tastes like it is straight from the 1950's soda pop shop... if I were actually alive in the 50's and had ever been to a pop shop. However, this is what I imagine it tasted like. Perfect for vegan ice cream floats!

dr. zevia - just call the good doctor... he or she will fix ya!

lemon lime twist - love this refreshing flavor.

cherry cola - this flavor makes it possible for vegan and natural foodies to enjoy a cherry cola that is NOT full of crapola!

black cherry - love it. Enough said.

strawberry - thank you Zevia for making it possible to enjoy a delicious a strawberry soda without junky ingredients and red dye!


i heart...

you! <3

Definitely liking all of the changes Zevia has made and just a huge fan of their products in general. Whether you are craving an ice cold fizzy beverage, hankering for an ice cream float, or want a natural and diet-friendly soda to use in recipes, Zevia is my go-to choice for sure! Be sure to follow the fun Zevia folks on Twitter, and also keep an eye out for my Zevia tweets! I love to show off my culinary creations in which I utilize Zevia... especially ginger root beer floats! 

And for now, the Dirty Vegan is signing off. Wishing you a sunshine in your pocket kind of day! 

Friday, May 6, 2016

Vegan Road Trip!

Hello from the road!

This is day two of my vegan road trip. I am also living proof that you CAN survive on just Veggie Straws and almond butter. Haha, just kidding. Sorta.

Here is my view RIGHT NOW...

Not that glamorous. But it helps to see the beauty in everything, which I do.

Last night we saw a DOUBLE RAINBOW...which was an especially awesome sight! It was directly over our hotel and I posted a picture of that on Twitter.

Stay tuned for more posts from me. When we get to our destination, there will be LOTS of vegan food pics and other things that I find cool to share, and hope that you find interesting as well.

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Vegan Cream Cheese Singles! Say Whaaaat???

Anyone who follows me on Twitter knows that I am a huge fan of the Go Veggie brand. They have evolved over the years to include so many vegan options and they are GOOD ones. I've always loved their vegan cream cheese, and have especially enjoyed them since they added Strawberry and Chive & Garlic to their product line.

Something particularly exciting has occurred over at Go Veggie, and I'm happy to share the news with you. They have made single serving cream cheeses! Oh yes, you hear this right. Long gone are the days of bringing our entire tub of cream cheese to Panera, or taking our own giant containers with us to breakfast. Now we can just bring a little single serving portion of Chive & Garlic along with us, or pack them in our lunch boxes, then they can be thrown in the recycle; easy!

These cute boxes contain 4 single serving minis that are 1.3 oz each!

Adorable, am I right???

The bagel shot. Yum!

Keep an eye out for this exciting new product from the fabulous Go Veggie brand and let me know what you think! Tweet me! 

And for now, the Dirty Vegan is signing off. Hope your day is extra cheesy!

Monday, May 2, 2016

Picture of me in my underwear!

I knew that would get your attention. Perv.

Here...a picture of me, and I am wearing underwear underneath my clothing. Ha!

And these are a photo of my actual underwear (by Too brand)

But while you are here, I wanted to talk to you about a worthy cause.

We all wear underwear right? Right. Well, most of us. I've known people who brag about going commando, but for the most part, underwear is a huge industry and we all buy it. point here is, you need to buy it, why not order from a brand where your purchase makes a direct positive impact on the lives of others?

Let me tell you what the brand Too does. Too will donate one pair of women's underwear to non-profit organizations, like Women's and Children's Shelters, for every pair purchased. So when you buy your underwear (which let me stress this again, you need to purchase anyhow), the Too brand will donate a pair of women's underwear to domestic violence shelters, rape crisis centers and women's addiction recovery centers for every pair purchased.  

So now lets talk about the drawers! These are AMAZING QUALITY undies! They make my butt feel cozy but look cute as hell. And they RIVAL the expensive brands (*cough, cough* Hanky Panky brand *cough, cough* sorry, not sorry) that I have purchased at Neiman Marcus and Nordstrom...and at a fraction of the cost. There is no reason to buy any other underwear as far as I'm concerned...and in my humble opinion.

The folks at Too are amazing for what they are doing, seriously. So check them out! You can visit their website at and follow them on Twitter (@tooapparelUSA). They are really cool and their panties are freaking awesome!!!

And for now, the Dirty Vegan is signing off. I hope you do something kind today...gotta keep adding to that good karma y'all!

Vegan Wine, Y'all!

"I cook with wine, sometimes I even add it to the food." - W. C. Fields

Whether you are a seasoned vegan looking for some new cruelty-free wine options, or a new vegan who is confused on how wine can even be non-vegan, I have some great news for you! Mezzacorona wine is vegan-friendly!

I love Mezzacorona and I will tell you why. They are vegan, they are green, they are hip, and they are inexpensive! Imagine a vegan wine that tastes so fancy that you'd swear it cost $300 per bottle, but is as affordable as buying a 6-pack of beer and obviously more elegant. If you are looking for all of those things, Mezzacorona's delicious wines are  for you!

When Mezzacorona contacted me and wanted to send me wine, my first thought was, "sure!", but then I immediately thought of the fact that they might not be vegan and might contain added sulfates... so I had to do the research first. I was pleasantly surprised to learn that they are not just vegan but also focused on preserving our natural environment; you know I love this!

My friends over at Barnivore have confirmed that their wines are suitable for us Dirty Vegans; I'm happy!

"I confirm that all Mezzacorona Wines are suitable for vegans.
We do not use fining agents such as egg albumin, casein, gelatin or isinglass to clarify the wine. The only fining agent, which is used, is Bentonite."

So here is what we sampled from Mezzacorona...

Mezzacorona Pinot Noir - a fantastic wine with characteristics of bright red cherry, blackberry and brown spice, you'll enjoy this wine paired with vegan roasts like Tofurky or Fieldroast.

Mezzacorona Pinot Grigio - I loved this wine and it was my favorite for its aromatic crisp green apple, mineral and honeysuckle notes. This light and refreshing wine pairs awesome with appetizers, soups and pasta.

Mezzacorona Rose - my second favorite, this wine has a rather complex aroma profile of wild red berries with floral notes of roses and geranium. I'd pair this with practically anything, but vegan stuffed mushrooms would be perfection!

Cliffhanger Pinot Grigio - in this amazing wine you'll enjoy ripe stone fruit with ripe pear surrounded by a white melon and fresh peach flavor, with light and elegant floral notes. Embodying a rich, smooth body and acidity, with a fresh, mineral finish, it is another great wine to pair with pasta and appetizers.

Such beautiful wine!

These were really yummy wines and I recommend this vegan and eco-friendly brand to anyone who enjoys a good quality at that. Big thanks to Mezzacorona for your generosity, I definitely savored these. Saluti!

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Baby It's Cold Outside...Beefless and Tomato Stew

Brrrr! It. Is. Cold. Outside.

When the meteorologist said that the wind chill was 1 degree, I didn't believe her. It was just in the 40's a few days ago. But yes, I report that when the wind blew today, it was mighty chilly...right to the bones.

What do you need to soothe your soul (and stomach!) after a long, winter day? Oh, just this super comforting but also simple and easy stew. Trust me, after you try this dish, you will be wondering how you got by with this recipe in your life. Especially on these uber-cool January nights.

Cozy up with this 'Beefless and Tomato Stew' Recipe

What you'll need:

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1.5 cups butternut squash, cubed
1 can (28 ounces) crushed tomatoes
1 cup vegetable broth or stock
3 garlic gloves, minced
1 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
2 tbsp dried parsley

What you'll need to do:

So easy...put all of the ingredients in a large pot. Bring to a boil, then simmer on low for 1 hour. Stir occasionally.

You can serve this delicious stew over brown rice or with hearty bread; your choice. I served mine over brown rice and it was a fantastic dinnertime experience. Enjoy! And stay warm as well.