One thing young Dreena Burton seldom had to worry about at dinnertime was being scolded for not eating her vegetables. Why?
Because at her house, dinnertime featured her mom’s home-cooked roasts, stews, mac ‘n’ cheese, fried bologna and fish sticks. She washed everything down with a glass of fresh milk.
When vegetables did show up, Dreena writes in Plant-Powered Families,”they were doused with gravy or mashed with butter and evaporated milk.”
What calories she wasn’t getting from vegetables, Dreena more than made up for by sneaking off to her grandfather’s corner store and trading her pocket change for a bagful of sweets.
That way of eating may sound like any kid’s dream. But as she entered her teens, Dreena gradually cut back on meat and dairy products.
At first, like so many girls her age, she did it to lose weight. But then, she writes:
“In those years, I read Fit for Life and Diet for a New America… I learned how meat and dairy promoted many of our most ravaging diseases, and how plant-based foods promoted wellness.”
She also fell in love with doing her own cooking:
“Enter cooking and baking with plant power… This new world of food was fresh, easy, beautiful and playful! It wasn’t about what we were eliminating, but instead how much our diet expanded — with delicious and nutritious plant foods.”
The very youthful middle-aged mother of three has now authored five cookbooks devoted to spreading the plant-based eating gospel.
Plant-Powered Families is her answer to other parents who ask, “Isn’t it hard to raise children on a vegan diet?” It’s packed with helpful tips on how she’s kept her daughters healthy and happy eating that way.
Dreena clearly wants to smooth the way for her readers to enjoy the same plant-based living she prioritizes!
She’s also created a treasure trove of over 100 new, whole-food vegan recipes. Each is supported by nutritionist-approved references and rated three thumbs up by her girls.
One of my favorites is her recipe for Ta-quinos. It replaces the greasy fried meat in traditional tacos with a fresh filling of vegan chili and cooked quinoa.
The quinoa lowers the chili’s heat to a kid-friendly temperature. The adults can compensate by adding their favorite hot sauce. It’s a win-win for the entire family!