hot for food faq

are Lauren and John a couple? yes! We've been dating since March 2013.

where did John go? he's around, don't worry! He just isn't actively working on hot for food anymore. He runs his own business which you can learn more about here. You might see his face pop up on my instagram stories or in vlogs on my other YouTube channel!

where do you live? we are based out of Toronto, Ontario Canada.

what blender do you use? I use a Vitamix and prefer the slender canister. You can purchase your very own here.

how long have you been vegan? Lauren has been vegan since Jan 1, 2010 and made a 2 month transition from an omnivores diet. She was also vegetarian from the age 12 to 19. John went vegan pretty much as soon as he started dating Lauren and did it cold faux turkey!

what camera equipment do you use to shoot your photos and videos? we shoot our YouTube videos on a Canon 70D with the Canon EF 24-70mm lens. We also have a Canon EF-S 60mm lens that we shoot some of the food photos and video broll on as well. We have 2 LEDGO Bi-color LED lights on Manfrotto stands in the kitchen for video and always use natural daylight for photos. Lauren does all the editing in Adobe Premiere Pro.

who shoots your YouTube videos? John was doing it from the start until Spring 2017. Now I work with a lovely and talented camera op named Alex Dale. 

why is there no nutritional information listed with your recipes? simply because this isn't something that concerns me. I'm not a registered nutritionist or dietician so I don't feel comfortable providing that information or spending the time doing those calculations. I believe in eating a balanced plant-based diet free from negative emotions and societal standards or perceptions of what a vegan is "supposed" to be! Sometimes I want to eat a hearty, healthy salad and other times a big 'ol burger. It's all about balance. I also believe in listening to your body when it comes to making food choices. I'm not concerned about calories and have certainly never counted them! I eat the food I make for the blog or channel and continue to have a healthy body image while remaining fit and healthy. So what does it matter?  

what advice do you have for anyone who is veg-curious or wants to go vegan? I always recommend a transition that is done at your own pace! No one expects you to go full level 10 vegan overnight. It would be impossible and if you attempted it you would probably fail. When transitioning to a vegan diet start with one meal a day and replace the animal products with plant-based alternatives such as veggie bacon, tofu, veggie burgers, non-dairy milk(s), yogurts, and vegan cheeses. There are lots of great products on the market and recipe ideas on this blog! From there work at replacing more of your favorite foods and meals with vegan options. You'll probably notice you won't crave cheese and meat as much over 2-3 weeks. And while you're transitioning if you slip up and eat a piece of birthday cake that's not vegan or say you felt compelled to eat a chicken wing... don't sweat it. There is no vegan police force! But you'll probably start to notice how your body reacts to eating animal products after making these changes to your diet and we're pretty sure you won't like it. 

Lauren has her own YouTube channel where she addresses a lot of vegan queries from hot for food fans and veg-curious humans! WATCH IT HERE.

what kinds of changes can I expect by adopting a plant-based diet? I can't make any promises, but you could experience clearer skin, weight loss, more energy and overall vibrancy, a clearer mind, better sleep, healthier nail and hair growth, better digestion, easier bowel movements, a feeling of connectedness to mother earth, and a better understanding of universal magic!

what are you favorite vegan restaurants? in our hometown of Toronto we have so many great restaurants! My most favorite include Tori's Bake Shop, Doug's Public Kitchen, Fresh RestaurantsApiecalypse Now!, Through Being Cool Vegan Baking Co., The Hogtown Vegan, BloomersHibiscus Cafe, Urban Herbivore, and Bunners Bakeshop. For a full listing of vegan friendly restaurants in the Greater Toronto Area, check out this list!

what vegan brands & products would you recommend? There are so many products on the market and only some of these are available in Canada where we live. Others we've tried while travelling throughout the USA. Keep in mind we haven't tried all there is to offer, but the products listed below are ones we have tried and enjoy! 

vegan mayos - Earth Island (Follow Your Heart), Wild Wood garlic aioli

vegan butter - Earth Balance buttery spread

vegan meats - Field Roast sausages, Field Roast deli slices, Field Roast celebration roastPC Blue Menu vegetarian chicken breasts (these are a Canadian only product that's currently off market), Gardein chipotle lime crispy fingers, Gardein gluten-free black bean burgers, Gardein beefless burgers, Gardein beefless ground, Yves veggie meatless ground.

vegan cheeses - Follow Your Heart cheese slices and shreds, Field Roast Chao cheese slices, Daiya cheese blocks, Kite Hill soft fresh truffle dill chive, Treeline Nut Cheese herb & garlic or scallion.

other favorites - Coconut Bliss dairy-free ice cream, Silk non-dairy beverages and coffee creamer (carrageenan free!), Yoso plain unsweetened coconut yogurt

what are some other essential kitchen appliances and tools that you use? In addition to the Vitamix high powered blender I recommend the following useful items:


You can check out this video for more info on these products, why we like them, and how we use them!

what resources do you recommend if I want more information on the vegan lifestyle?

documentaries: Cowspiracy, Forks Over Knives, Food Inc., Earthlings

books: Eating Animals (Jonathan Safran Foer), Skinny Bitch (Rory Freedman & Kim Barnouin), Living The Farm Sanctuary Life (Gene Baur), The Omnivores Dilemma (Michael Pollan), The Kind Diet (Alicia Silverstone)

* there are lots of blogs and great cook books as well that will be helpful. Just google "vegan" and so many options will come up! Honestly, we just haven't spent a whole lot of time on other people's blogs, nor do we use vegan cookbooks, since we're in the business of developing our own recipes!