My Melrose Musts

Happy Monday! I visited Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles, California, for a fun girls’ day seeking out the best coffee and tea and healthy eats!

I listed my itinerary here as well as my recommendations for each place you must stop next time you go to Melrose Avenue–it is worth the trip!

Alfred Tea

This isn’t the first time I blogged about this adorable pink tearoom! It is way too cute not to mention again! I ordered the hot chocolate tea with almond milk. Instead of tasting like tea, it tasted like a rich, decadent, yet healthy dessert! PLEASE go try this!

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Alfred Coffee

Home of delicious coffee and cool vibes, Alfred Coffee is the perfect place to grab a drink and work on a project or meet with a friend (like I did!).

Urth Caffe

Deliciously healthy, I ordered a gluten-free chicken pesto sandwich! Urth is full of healthy options for vegans, gluten-free people, or even those with no dietary restrictions! Everyone can find something here.

Live Beaming

And for dessert…Live Beaming! I ordered an organic, gluten-free, and vegan chocolate chip cookie. It is truly rare that I can enjoy a dessert when I’m out of my house, so I was thrilled! Plus it was absolutely delicious and tasted like the real thing.

Carrera Cafe

Perhaps I saved the most unique destination for last! Carrera Cafe has a coffee printer–yes, you heard that correctly! You can select a pre-designed option or create your own design to be printed on any type of latte you choose! I created my own designs then sent them to Carrera’s coffee printer via their app! This was a highlight of my week. Plus Melrose’s infamous pink wall lives directly across the street, so you can grab a drink then head to the pink wall for some photos! See the middle picture below for the latte design of my Health and High Heels logo! 

And for final words of wisdom…

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Why We Should All Go to Van Leeuwen Ice Cream Right Now

About a week ago, I casually strolled along Abott Kinney Boulevard in Venice, California, on a warm, sunny Sunday afternoon. Nothing could have improved my day until….I discovered a Van Leeuwen Ice Cream Truck! Van Leeuwen sells infamously delicious vegan ice cream that I had been desperate to try. I happily ordered one dairy-free peanut butter and one chocolate scoop, and it did not disappoint!

Hands down, it was the most scrumptious vegan ice cream I have ordered to date. Seriously, please, everyone, go try this…..Van Leeuwen sells ice cream in pints in grocery stores and from LA and NYC locations. Consider this my public service announcement for all the dairy-free and vegan ice cream lovers of the world!

Not only was the ice cream great for me, but my family (who all enjoy regular ice cream), loved it too! We each devoured our scoops.

The vegan ice creams are made from house-made cashew milk, organic coconut milk, organic extra virgin coconut oil, organic cane sugar, pure cocoa butter, and organic carob bean.

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I love the emphasis on organic and whole ingredients, and I think this is the best type of treat!

Fun Foodie Fact: According to Britannica.com, Cashew nuts (used in Van Leeuwen’s vegan ice cream) actually grow attached to a fruit. Cashews also contain approximately one-fifth of the daily recommended value for magnesium. Magnesium provides the body with energy and promotes healthy bone structure.

How to Order Healthy at Starbucks

I love coffee.  It gets me up in the morning, energizes me for the day, and brings a smile to my face.  However, I don’t always have time to make my favorite organic coffee at home with almond milk and stevia. Somedays I am in a rush, away from home, and need a quick coffee or caffeine fix.  Stopping at Starbucks is easy, but it’s not always the healthiest option.  However, you can still be healthy at Starbucks if you follow my simple tips!

#1) Avoid added chemicals and sugars like syrups & flavorings. 

Your body will not recognize these ingredients as delicious as they may taste.  Avoiding these will also help you avoid a sugar high (followed by the inevitable crash).  Always check if your drink comes pre-sweetened.  Sneaky drinks like iced tea may be filled with sugar if you don’t specifically request to remove the flavored syrup.

#2) Flavor your drink with the available cinnamon powder or B.Y.O.S.

Sprinkling cinnamon in your drink adds a spicy and yummy flavor without the artificial chemicals and sugar in syrups! And if you B.Y.O.S. (Bring Your Own Stevia) like me, you don’t need to consume sugar. I always carry organic stevia packets in my wallet, so that I can sweeten drinks like coffee or iced tea when I am out.

#3) Order a small size if you do decide to indulge.

Enjoy your treats in moderation!

#4) For snacks, choose nuts or a piece of whole fruit instead of pre-packaged snacks.

My typical Starbucks order is coffee with coconut milk.  I enjoy lattes, but I also love cold brew because it is less bitter than normal coffee, meaning it usually does not need much sweetening!  No matter which coffee I order, once I add cinnamon and stevia, I am good-to-go.

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Healthy Eating, Happy Living, & Beverly Hills

Last week, I turned 17! To celebrate, I stayed at the Beverly Hills Hotel (also known as The Pink Palace because of its adorable color)! The entire trip was a (very pink!) dream.  Can you guess my favorite color? 😉 While there, we both enjoyed the hotel’s yummy restaurants and tested some other great places around the city, all of which I am thrilled to share with you in this blog post.

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Breakfast: The Polo Lounge at The Beverly Hills Hotel 

What do I love more than almond milk lattes and beautiful flowers?  I don’t think anything is better! For breakfast I dined on scrambled egg whites, gluten-free toast, and avocado!

Lunch: The Cabana Cafe at The Beverly Hills Hotel

During my weekend in Beverly Hills, when I wasn’t eating, I was at the spa, by the pool, or shopping (although this blog post may cause you to think all I did was eat…haha!). The Cabana Cafe, located overlooking the pool, was the perfect lunchtime spot after a busy day of activities! 

Although July is hot and sunny, I could never pass up an opportunity to indulge in some of The Beverly Hills Hotel’s famous tortilla soup decadently topped with avocado and chicken.  For my entree, I enjoyed the Asian Chicken salad complete with lots of flavor and lots of different veggies! I left a happy girl with a full tummy! 🙂

Snack Time: Cupcakes! 

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A special surprise and an afternoon treat was delivered to my room–gluten and dairy-free cupcakes! Not only were they delicious, but I was also ecstatic because I usually cannot eat cake on my birthday due to my allergies!

Afternoon Pick-Me-Up: Alfred (Tea and Coffee)

Since I had the entire weekend to enjoy Beverly Hills and its surroundings, I decided to try both Alfred Coffee and Alfred Tea over the course of the trip!

Alfred Tea

Alfred Tea is probably the prettiest place ever because of its adorable pink decor! I ordered a matcha boba drink with almond milk.  It was my first time trying both boba and matcha, so I guess you could say I was a little late to the party–oops 😉

 

Alfred Coffee

As much as I love tea, there is nothing like the refreshing taste of freshly brewed coffee.  I tried the cold brew nitro at Alfred Coffee, which was outrageously delicious! I added almond milk and a sprinkle of stevia to top it off.

 

Dinner: Spago by Wolfgang Puck

I don’t have any pictures of my food from this dinner because it was too yummy to wait, so I ate it before taking a picture (oops)! I enjoyed a salad with a fresh lemon vinaigrette and date puree to start then Halibut with vegetables for my main course.

Overall, I was delighted with all of the spots mentioned in this blog post and absolutely recommend each of them because of the wonderful experiences I had on my birthday trip! If you’re ever in Beverly Hills and looking for fun, new places to try, I hope I can help!:)

 

 

 

 

Try This Tuesday: Karma Baker, LA

Karma Baker is the definition of my happiness because I honestly cannot think of anything better than a dedicated gluten-free and vegan bakery! Whether you want cupcakes, donuts, cake pops, cakes, cookies, or brownies, Karma has you covered! Karma Baker is my not-so-new obsession!

Here are some pictures of my favorite Karma Baker treats! 🙂

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The most delicious mini cupcakes ever! Clockwise from the top left: Cookies & Cream, Red Velvet, Chocolate, Vanilla, & Strawberry.  Yum!

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Last year’s custom birthday cake! Pink lemonade-flavored frosting and cake with frosting roses surrounding the sides. Healthy cake heaven! ❤

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Pretty-in-pink.  This is the most adorable donut I have ever had!

You may have noticed I have a slight (or maybe not-so-slight) obsession with the color pink.  These “Karma Cakes” combined three of my favorite things: The color pink, chocolate, & Karma Baker!

Karma Baker not only sells from a storefront, but they also offer their baked goods at many locations throughout LA! For a comprehensive list, click here! Or order online, and they will ship to you! Either way, you will LOVE everything Karma Baker has to offer!

Top 5 Los Angeles Smoothie Bowls

As many of you know, I love smoothie bowls.  And when I say “I love smoothie bowls,” I mean: “I wish I could eat them for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.”  However, I don’t always have time to make my own at home. 😦 So I rely on these 5 places to fulfill my cravings and hit the spot with their over-the-top delicious smoothie bowls!  These smoothie bowls are not rated in any order–I simply can’t choose a favorite!

  1. Bowl of Heaven

The name doesn’t lie–Bowl of Heaven’s smoothie bowls are literally bowls of heaven. There are so many smoothie bowl choices that picking which amazing one you will order is the hardest part.  My personal faves: the lime-a-licious (raspberries and dark chocolate-flavored with a zingy twist!) or the peanut butter bowl with berries (think chocolate and berries and peanut butter heaven). I add paleo granola, and bam! SO. YUMMY.

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2. Malibu Farm

This isn’t one you will want to take to-go.  Enjoy the beautiful view as you sit on the Malibu Pier and dine on this wonderful, organic smoothie bowl! Add some sunshine and a perfect day awaits you!

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3. Nekter Juice Bar

Nekter’s bowls are yummy and the best breakfast on a warm summer day! I love, love, love their peanut butter bowl. Whenever I go, I have a photoshoot (haha) of my bowl.

My car may be “mini,” but thank goodness Nekter’s smoothie bowls aren’t!

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4. Sunlife Organics

You can’t go wrong at Sunlife.  The first smoothie bowl I ever tried was from here, and I seriously love all the choices! Pictured here is their “samurai bowl” which is laden with superfoods and tastes delicious.

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5. Uba Tuba Acai

Uba Tuba’s bowls are pure acai with a plethora of toppings to choose from! Seriously this is the best place to meet a friend (like I did in the picture below!) because of it’s cool vibe and artsy acai bowls.

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If you live in Los Angeles or are visiting, these 5 places you won’t want to miss–I promise! 🙂

Xoxo,

Kendal

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Try This Tuesday: Pressed Juicery Freezes

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Gluten, Dairy, Soy, Refined-Sugar Free Soft Serve?!  Somebody pinch me.  This must be a dream.  But wait…it’s not!  I am absolutely obsessed with Pressed Juicery’s freezes right now!  They’re soft serves made with all natural ingredients…100% fruits, nuts, and veggies!  I have visited two southern California locations (in Santa Barbara and Fashion Island), and let me tell you, this is not something you want to pass up!

My go-to flavors are chocolate or vanilla.  Simple, but delicious.  Each is made with almonds, dates, sea salt, and either cacao or vanilla (depending on whether you order chocolate or vanilla 🙂 )! Plus, there are so many toppings it is hard to choose!!  I love the almond and peanut butter drizzles, hardening cacao sauce, and any fresh berries!

Bottom line: Pressed Juicery’s freezes are simply incredible.  I wish I lived closer to a location that served them.  If you are ever nearby a freeze-serving location, you NEED to go and try one!  Or even if you’re not, they are definitely worth the trip.  And when you do go, be sure to order the biggest size possible (like me!).  I promise you won’t regret it.

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Try This Tuesday: Erewhon

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An all-organic grocery store with lots of gluten-free and vegan options?  It sounds too good to be true, but guess what?! Erewhon, with two California locations, is this magical grocery store I can’t wait to tell you about!  Erewhon is not only my favorite grocery store, but also one of my favorite places to grab dinner with friends or family because of its truly ah-mazing hot (and cold) deli sections and salad bar!!! I am not used to having so many healthy options, but I love it!! ❤

I recently went with a few friends for dinner and ordered some of their sushi rolls, which I highly recommend by the way!  And to drink?  Alkaline water, of course! I absolutely had to get a side of their roasted kabocha squash as well because it is incredible! My friends ordered salads, veggie wraps, and smoothies for dinner!  Everyone agreed that not only does Erewhon’s food taste great, but it makes your body feel great after eating it too! For dessert we all split a few items because there were so many yummy-looking options it was difficult to choose just one!  We bought a raw chocolate brownie, a raw ooey gooey chocolate coconut brownie, a chocolate almond butter tart, and mango sorbet!  Everything was so decadent and delicious.

Overall,  I give Erewhon 5 stars and a big thumbs up!  Next time you’re ever in California (or maybe you live here like me!), be sure to check out Erewhon! Once you go, you’ll be hooked like me!

Try This Tuesday: My Favorite Ice Cream in LA

Hello!  I’m sorry it’s been a couple weeks since I’ve blogged!  Since I last wrote to you, I went on vacation, turned 16, and passed my driver’s test!  Needless to say, it’s been a busy past couple weeks.  Anyways, today I want to share with you 3 of my favorite ice cream stops in LA! First, there’s Grom in Malibu, then there’s Kippy’s in Venice, and finally there’s Ice Cream Lab with a few different locations in LA! Each offers delicious dairy-free ice cream you won’t want to miss 🙂

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1) Grom: Malibu, California Made with organic ingredients, this gelato is the perfect treat after a day at the beach!  I love that they are so conscious of different food intolerances and that I have so many options whenever I visit!  My favorites are the melon sorbet and the dairy-free chocolate, so of course I have to get half and half!

2) Kippy’s: Venice, California

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Kippy’s is amazing!  All their ice cream is organic, dairy-free, vegan, sweetened with raw honey, and coconut based! They have so many delicious flavors such as chocolate, cinnamon, peach, and much, much more!  Plus they have fresh organic fruit, bee pollen, goji berries, date caramel, cacao sauce, and even coconut whipped cream to top your sundae off with!  I ordered the chocolate and vanilla chocolate chip ice creams with hardening cacao sauce.  No matter what you order, you really cannot go wrong!

3) Ice Cream Lab: Beverly Hills/Pasadena/Little Tokyo LA/Westlake Village, California

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I love Ice Cream Lab!  It is so fun to choose my flavor then watch the liquid nitrogen transform my ice cream into this soft, creamy, overall wonderful treat!! My favorites are the vegan chocolate (pictured above) or vanilla (both made with coconut milk and sweetened with agave) topped with sliced almonds!

Try This Tuesday: Juice Crafters

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Last week my mom and I stopped at the Juice Crafters in Brentwood, CA for quick pick-me-up!  We each ordered smoothies and ginger-lemon-cayenne shots!  I love following the spiciness of the shot with the sweetness of the smoothie.  I ordered the “Pacific Love” smoothie which was AMAZING!  It has maca, raw cacao nibs, banana, almond butter, dates, coconut butter, almond milk, bee pollen, and royal jelly!  Together these ingredients made the perfect combination!  My mom ordered the “East West” smoothie which had bananas, strawberries, and apple!  Her smoothie was much simpler in terms of the ingredients, but the flavor was still out of this world!  I definitely recommend stopping by Juice Crafters in one of their locations in either Beverly Hills, Brentwood, or Downtown LA!