by Natasha Wolff | September 5, 2018 11:00 am
Sakara Life’s secret to successfully drawing me in lies in a very basic fact that I quickly learned upon embarking on my three-day food journey with them. Beyond the brand’s pretty aesthetic, even prettier fans (including queen of all queens Issa Rae) and of course, their beautifully curated Instagram feed, you’ll arrive at the intersection between people’s severe distrust in today’s confusing food industry and Sakara Life’s mission to resolve that relationship with vegan plant-based food.
As a meal delivery service alone, their customer service is friendly and approachable. And that’s pretty much expected, given the company’s overall ethos aims to assume the tone of your love-and-light BFF who went away on a yogi retreat to Bhutan and returned with a wealth of knowledge and well-meaning advice. Granted, the professionals at Sakara Life have years on your friend, and that’s why you’re paying them to restart your healthy lifestyle. Take it from someone who has interviewed countless professionals about how to commit to a well-balanced lifestyle, the answer never changes: forget the grueling workouts you’re bound to counterbalance with a congratulatory trip to Milk Bar. You start with your gut.
So, at 8:30PM on a Sunday night, just days away from a beach trip I definitely did not prepare enough for, I received my meals for the next three days. It felt super comforting to not only receive my meals in pre-packaged, ‘dummy-proof’ containers, but also to receive “The Ultimate Guide to The Sakara Life,” a pamphlet detailing what I was about to get myself into and the benefits I would enjoy. Not only was I pumped to learn that this would “heal your gut, reduce inflammation, balance your blood sugar and hormones, and regulate your digestive system,” but to me, the proof is in the taste test.
Follow along on three days of breakfast, lunch and dinner with the one and only Sakara Life. Where a normal, hungry human (yes, me) attempts the diet of the healthiest, most zen people out there.
Breakfast: The Superfood Sweet Potato Bowl
Lunch: The Indian Summer Salad
Dinner: Sakara Burger with Chili Cashew Creme + “Bacon”
For breakfast, I’ll admit that the Superfood Sweet Potato Bowl was delicious, although not terribly filling. So, naturally, I freaked out about the fact that I might be hungry for the next 72 hours. But, in the trusty “The Ultimate Guide to The Sakara Life” lies a list of Sakara-approved snacks that are off-menu. Beauty Water (Sakara’s rose and silica concentrate) and raw walnuts held me over until lunch’s Indian Summer Salad. It came with Coconut Collagen Dressing which was delightful, and the heavy portion of cauliflower (known for its detoxifying benefits and plant protein). As for my dinner, the famed Sakara Burger was as delicious as anticipated—by this point in my day I had completed a post-work workout at Hit House and was in desperate need of sustenance. The black bean burger was delicious and filling, and the Shitake Mushroom “bacon” added the perfect taste. Was it just me or was I all of a sudden convinced to go vegan?
All in all, day one proved to be delicious and also revealing: every meal showed off Sakara’s core science—the menu was freckled with everything from plant protein and leafy greens to superfoods and sulfur-rich vegetables. So much so that it actually makes you wonder how much of it you’re missing in a non-Sakara day (hint: most likely a lot).
Breakfast: Hummingbird Chia Bowl with Rhubarb Compote
Lunch: Beauty Blend Salad
Dinner: DIY Pulled Jackfruit Tacos
Upon waking up on day two, it’s unclear whether I’m feeling lighter than usual because my body is now running on a plant-based diet, or if I’m just giddy about the fact alone. Regardless, it feels good to wake up with less bloat!
The Hummingbird Chia Bowl with Rhubarb Compote is small-yet-delicious again, but this time I’m armed and ready with my snacks for later on in the day. I also did a morning workout and rushed to work, so having the breakfast pre-packed and ready to eat saved valuable time.
I savored my snacks after breakfast, but this time instead of Beauty Water I drank Sakara Life’s Detox Tea. The tea is a great (sweeter) detox alternative to green tea which can tend to be a bit bitter, and makes you feel instantly refreshed without the caffeine crash. This was also the moment I became “a tea person.” It tastes great and I learned that its key ingredient rooibos can help with asthma—so what’s not to love!
Lunch’s Beauty Blend Salad was yet another salad that I secretly dreaded eating (let’s be real here: salads). But it was delicious. The fact that this particular recipe included a generous portion of fresh avocado covered in hemp seeds (full of amino acids and heart-healthy omegas) was great. By this point I’m feeling light as a feather, and if you saw me, you would never know I had only just started Sakara the day before—it’s a full-on lifestyle and I’m embracing it. I’m a changed woman.
Since I did my workout in the morning, I get to actually eat dinner when my stomach tells me to—so tonight, that means 5:30PM. And boy am I glad because I’ve been waiting all day for the DIY Pulled Jackfruit Tacos. Coming from a Mexican and avid taco-lover, if someone tells me they have found the secret to plant-based tacos that are 100 percent guilt-free, I will hold them to it. I reveled in the combination of Jackfruit-Mushroom “Carnitas,” Chili-Lime Salsa, Cassava Tortilla, and Sauteed Baby Spinach. I was genuinely full from this one and also satisfied to know the answer to the impossible question: can tacos be delicious and plant-based? Yes, yes they can. Although my absolute favorite meals came tomorrow, this would definitely be my third-favorite overall.
Breakfast: Banana Protein Bread with Macerated Berries
Lunch: Sichuan Noodle with Sesame-Roasted Carrots
Dinner: Rustic Tomato Soup + Sakara “Grilled Cheese”
Day three really opened my eyes to the possibilities of happily living on a plant-based diet for much longer than three days, and it started with the Banana Protein Bread with Macerated Berries. This breakfast was so tasty I forgot it was good for me. I guess that’s a luxury I started to really appreciate by the third day—it takes the thinking out of fueling my body with all this goodness. The serving was small, again, but this time around no snacks were necessary. I just drank my Detox Tea and went on with my morning… with small daydreams here and there about the banana bread smothered in sweet, fresh macerated berries. This was just my second favorite meal of the three days.
It’s difficult to not get emotional about the Sichuan Noodles with Sesame-Roasted Carrots I had for lunch, if only because it’s so good that it makes you wonder why we even bother filling our bodies with anything but this healthy fuel. Everything about this meal was on point—the brown rice noodles, sesame-roasted carrots, and kale and protein-packed white beans.
My last supper, the Rustic Tomato Soup + Sakara “Grilled Cheese” was definitely an interesting meal that I had also anticipated throughout the three days. Generally, I’m always intrigued by (and feel a little trepidation about) the concept of “cheese-less cheese.” I’d recently gone dairy-free (for the most part) so it was only a matter of time I try a plant-based grilled cheese. The “cheese” was made from roasted cauliflower so once again, I was getting the protein I needed. The soup was also surprising, super fresh and tangy in flavor.
This was another meal that reminded me of the convenience of living the Sakara Life—I quickly ate the grilled cheese and soup in my office and then went off to attend back-to-back, post-work events. Usually they’re the scene of the crime when it comes to where my worst dietary decisions are made—catered finger foods are an indulgence I cannot deny—but that night, I didn’t touch one mini taco or short rib skewer. I told you: I’m a changed woman.
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