Hi! I'm Lori. I do the writing, recipe development, and photography here at My Quiet Kitchen. I've always loved food and cooking, and going vegan only intensified that love! I've been vegan since 2011 and have passionately explored everything from oil-free, whole-food recipes to homemade vegan cheeses and decadent desserts. I want to help others feel comfortable and empowered in the kitchen, discovering that same excitement and joy for cooking with plants.
I live in beautiful Western North Carolina with my husband Mark (who is also vegan) and our two feline friends Sissy and Millie. I'm a yoga instructor and also worked in the craft beer industry for a while. Before that, I worked in the fitness industry for a decade. You can read more about my background and why I became vegan in Our Vegan Story.
I'm so glad you're here!
About the Recipes:
The recipes you'll find here are always vegan and made mostly from whole, unprocessed foods, with the occasional indulgent exception.
My Food Philosophy:
First, a little clarification for anyone new to this whole vegan thing! Veganism is not simply a diet (more on this another day). So it's important to remember that when we say someone "follows a vegan diet," really, what we're describing is what they DON'T eat (anything from an animal). But these words don't tell us much about what they do eat. Their days might be filled with fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds, big salads, whole grains, bean dishes, etc, or they may be chowing down on cereal, chips, cookies, candy, fast food, and frozen dinners. I don't say this to demonize any of those foods, but simply to provide a reminder that a vegan diet comes in many, many forms.
On the best days, I focus on eating for nutrient density (if this term is new to you, the book Eat to Live by Dr. Joel Fuhrman explains it well). This translates to a focus on vegetables, fruits, beans, whole grains, nuts and seeds. These foods support health by giving you the most nutrient bang for your caloric buck, so to speak.
While I'm passionate about nutrition, first and foremost I became vegan for ethical reasons. My main concern is in eliminating the unnecessary suffering we inflict upon animals. As luck would have it, this also reduces the negative environmental impacts from agriculture related to growing animals for food (which gives ALL of us a healthier world to live in). I recognize that someone eating a typical American diet may not care much about their own nutrition (just yet). They just want food that tastes good! This is why in addition to sharing healthy, nutrient-dense recipes, I also enjoy veganizing classic dishes and sharing slightly more indulgent recipes perfect for special occasions.
I want to meet people where they are.
Like a lot of people, I don't respond well to rules and restrictions (more on this in my vegan story). Rules just make me want to rebel! For so many of us, strictly following certain diets can lead to feelings of guilt over "failing" while on vacation or because we consumed an "off-limits" food while out with friends. Nothing about that is healthy. This is why I aim for a whole-food, unprocessed version of a vegan diet MOST of the time, not necessarily all of the time.
After going vegan in 2011, it took a while to find my dietary groove. I experimented with raw foods, read every vegan/vegetarian book I could get my hands on, binge-watched documentaries on food, nutrition and the environment (check out the Vegan Resources page for a few of my favorites), and completed the plant-based nutrition certificate through the T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies. All of that seeking, experimentation, and observation shaped the way I approach food today.
Cooking doesn't just sustain us, it's also a creative outlet.
I love baking for special occasions, and if I'm at a restaurant that offers vegan desserts, you can bet I'm saving room! Food is such an exciting, beautiful part of life, and I want to eat in a way that feels sustainable on multiple levels. For me this means eating simple, whole foods most of the time, while avoiding the pitfall of guilt that often accompanies "diets" if I do choose to eat something oily, sugary, or processed. This nutrient-focused but unrestricted philosophy is reflected in the recipes I share.
A few other notes about the food:
One of the awesome things about veganism is that even our processed foods and most decadent recipes tend to be healthier than the non-vegan versions (just a little perk to keep in mind).
To make it easier for you to find what you're looking for, recipe posts are always tagged with applicable categories, such as oil-free, gluten-free, refined sugar-free, etc. Again, all recipes are completely free of animal products - no meat, dairy, eggs or honey. If it came from someone who had eyes, I choose not to eat or use it.
All eaters are welcome here!
Wondering about the blog name? Visit Why Quiet to learn a little more about my path to blogging and my desires for this blog.