Happy Herbivore Visits Mindful Mending!

If you are not familiar with Lindsay Nixon of Happy Herbivore, it’s time to become familiar with her.

Mindful Mending has been given the privilege of being a stop on her blog tour while she promotes her latest book, Happy Herbivore Light & Lean.  She answered a few questions and provided me with a recipe from her new book.  She is not just a popular vegan cookbook author or even a popular vegetarian cookbook author, she’s a popular cookbook author period.

I can’t express how excited I am about this!  This is a dream come true for me.  I have been following her blog since the very beginning—which is the reason that I seem to have a creepy amount of knowledge about her life.  I was also allowed to choose among a handful of recipe’s to feature here.  I chose a recipe called Meatloaf Bites because I think it epitomizes a Happy Herbivore recipe.  It only has a few ingredients, none of which are obscure or crazy expensive, and it’s super fast and easy.  I have not tried this recipe, yet, but if history teaches us anything, it will be delicious.  Scroll down for my questions, her answers, and the recipe!  YAY!


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MINDFUL MENDING: You had a serious health scare several years ago which was a turning point for you. How do you define health now? What are your current health goals?

HAPPY HERBIVORE: I’ve found that in general, society tends to define health as an absence of something – an absence of sickness. You’re healthy if you don’t have XYZ health problems. I don’t care for that way of thinking. I define health in terms of abundance. Health isn’t just an absence of something, it’s also about what you’re adding. Health for me is about thriving and feeling good.

My goals at this point are to continue to live well and thrive. I think our health is a journey and one that never really ends. We can continue to improve. Make still another tiny tweak to our diet and lifestyle. Each day I strive to be better than I was the day before.

MINDFUL MENDING: Your business helps people live better lives and that wasn’t accidental. Do you have any spiritual beliefs or practices that influence the way you do business?

HAPPY HERBIVORE: I’ve always wanted to help people. It’s why I went to law school. I thought I could help people if I was a lawyer, and to be fair I did help my clients, but it just wasn’t enough for me. I wasn’t satisfied. Wanting to help others has always been my ultimate passion. I think it must be similar to what many doctors feel when they explain why they choose a career in medicine. They had this deep desire to be healers.

MINDFUL MENDING: To me, one of the running themes of your blog is one of forgiveness. For example, you often use the phrase, “progress, not perfection,” to emphasize the benefit that we all receive when we build each other up instead of tear each other down. Can you talk more about that?

HAPPY HERBIVORE: I can’t believe I’m about to quote a Will Ferrell movie, but, in one of his movies, the character is always saying “you’re first or you’re last,” and I think that statement sums up the pressure society puts on us. I think a lot of us feel like we have to be perfect. That if we’re not perfect, then it doesn’t even matter. We feel it’s 100% or 0… like all the numbers… 5…23..56…92… between 0-100 don’t matter. I want to change that—rage against that mentality. Progress matters more than perfection. I’m not sure perfection really exists anyway because there is always room for improvement. :)

MINDFUL MENDING: You are a trailblazer, not just for plant-based eaters, but for entrepreneurial women. During the tough early days of your business, what kept you going?

HAPPY HERBIVORE: Aww thank you! What I tell my students (I’m teaching a business class on entrepreneurship right now through exitstrategyschool.com) is that you have to have a clear motivation. Maybe it’s monetary, maybe it’s spiritual, maybe it’s a passion in your heart, maybe it’s achieving a certain lifestyle you want—but whatever it is, you have to keep it in your line of sight. It’s what will get you through the hard times and the hard days (which you will have), and it’ll be there to comfort you when you make hard calls. I’ve always had this overriding passion and desire to help people, and that kept me going. Even when it was hard and my situation felt hopeless, I would remember why I started in the first place. I would tell myself (I still tell myself) that every day is another day I get to help someone, no matter what else that day brings (good or bad). For me, it’s about the work. Doing good work I believe in.

A million thanks to Lindsay Nixon for having me on the blog tour and for putting so much thought into her answers to my questions.  I would also like to thank Lindsay M, her marketing person, for setting this all up.  Now for the recipe:

Meatloaf Bites
Makes 8
Gluten-free, Quick, Budget

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One afternoon I grabbed what I thought was corn from the freezer but later realized it was mixed vegetables. Once they thawed on the counter I knew they weren’t going back in, so I looked for a new, inventive way to use them. A can of kidney beans started calling, and before I knew it I had a vegetable-filled meatloaf in the oven. Since this meatloaf is baked in a muffin tin (great for serving sizes and portion control), I call it meatloaf “bites” and, yes, leftovers are great as a burger!

1 15-oz can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 tbsp onion powder
1 tbsp garlic powder
1 tbsp Italian seasoning
1 tbsp chili powder (add another 1 tsp if you like it spicy)
3 tbsp ketchup
2 tbsp mustard
1 tbsp Vegan Worcestershire Sauce (recipe in full cookbook)
1 c frozen mixed vegetables, thawed
6 tbsp instant oats

Preheat oven to 350˚F. Line a muffin tin with paper liners or use nonstick. Mash beans in a bowl with fork or potato masher until well mashed. Add remaining ingredients, except oats, and stir to combine.

Stir in oats. Spoon into muffin tin and pack down. Bake for 20 minutes until crisp on the outside and fairly firm to the touch (firms a bit as it cools). Serve with ketchup, Quick Gravy (pg. 188), etc.

Per Bite
Calories . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 101
Fat. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.7g
Carbs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16.9g
Fiber. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6.5g
Sugars. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3g
Protein. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5.8g
WW Points. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2