Tag Archives: breakfast

Raw Review: Root – Lancaster, PA

Root of LancasterLast weekend, I finally made it to Root, a semi-new vegan restaurant in Lancaster. I wanted to check it out as soon as it opened, but I kept putting it off, basically because it’s in Lancaster and I never really wanted to battle 5 o’clock traffic during the week into the city, and on the weekends I got busy doing everyday life things.  They are pretty lame excuses and I found out I was missing out on some awesome food.

I told my husband I wanted to go for brunch and we headed out a little after 11 on a Saturday. To my relief, there was a small parking lot for the restaurant (marked as Reserved for WOW) that was mostly empty. (Parking in Lancaster or Harrisburg *really* stresses me out.)

Root of Lancaster

The Menu
The best thing thing overall about Root is that it is completely vegan, right down to the alcohol menu. I love having an entire menu to order from. Speaking of the menu, it had a decent selection and was reasonably priced. I’m looking forward to going back to try the dinner menu because there is more on it, and there are a lot of things that sound delicious.

Root’s menu is great for vegans and non-vegans alike. The brunch menu has pancakes, french toast, a grilled pb&j, and (tofu) tacos. The lunch menu includes soups, salads, and sandwiches.

Root Lancaster Zucchini Sandwich
Grilled Zucchini Sandwich – Grilled zucchini, lemon aioli, lettuce & tomato on rustic Italian bread served with fries.

What We Ordered
First, we ordered the brunch special, a pumpkin ginger waffle. It was a flavorful Belgium waffle. This item was the only thing that I thought was a little pricey given that it was just one waffle for $7. It tasted great, but I think if it was served with some fruit or something on the side it would’ve been a more substantial meal.

My husband got the Hearts of Palm “Seafood” Salad. It’s blended hearts of palm, celery, mayo and seafood seasonings on rustic Italian bread with lettuce and tomato, served with fries. He said it was a little salty, but devoured it before I could try a bite so I’m going to say it was good.

I ordered the grilled zucchini sandwich – grilled zucchini, lemon aioli, lettuce, and tomato on rustic Italian bread served with fries. I really liked the sandwich. The bread was crusty on the outside and soft on the inside and the aioli was super tasty.

We were both full after our meals, but I wanted to try as much as possible, so we got the two desserts, the Caramelized Apple Spice Cake and Blueberry cake, to go. We ate them later at home and they were both really, really good.

I’m kind of kicking myself for putting off visiting the restaurant for so long. I can’t wait to go back for dinner and to bring my mom.

Farm Sanctuary Event
What’s even more exciting is that in a few weeks, Gene Baur will be celebrating 30 years of Farm Sanctuary’s work in helping animals at a dinner party held at Root! I had no idea that Farm Sanctuary has history in Lancaster, which makes it even more awesome. More info and tickets can be found here. Let me know if you’re going!

Root of Lancaster Parking
Root Parking

Root of Lancaster

Root of Lancaster - Brunch Menu
Brunch Menu
Root of Lancaster - Lunch Menu
Lunch Menu
Root of Lancaster Beer List
Beer List
Root of Lancaster Wine List
Wine List
Pumpkin Ginger Waffle
Pumpkin Ginger Waffle
Hearts of Palm “Seafood” Salad
Hearts of Palm “Seafood” Salad – Blended Hearts of Palm, celery, mayo and seafood seasonings on rustic Italian bread with lettuce, and tomato, served with fries.
Grilled Zucchini Sandwich
Grilled Zucchini Sandwich
Caramelized Apple Spice Cake
Caramelized Apple Spice Cake
Blueberry Cake
Blueberry Cake

NuZest Vegan Protein {Review}

NuZest Clean Lean Protein
I’m a bit of a sucker for vegan protein powders. I started with whey (yuck) before I was vegan because I thought I needed more protein and kind of fell for the “healthy” marketing. Now, I realize that I get enough protein in my regular diet, but I like to make shakes for breakfast because they’re delicious and keep me full for a while. I also like to add a few scoops of protein powder to homemade pancakes and waffles to bump up the protein we eat at breakfast. And of course it makes me feel like I’m being healthier when I make a mug cake and use protein in place of regular flour.

My usual go to protein was always Sun Warrior, but I’ve also branched out to Vega, Orgain Organic (gotta make sure you get the plant based one because they also have whey ones), and other hemp and soy powders that I don’t remember the brand names of.

I recently got a few free samples of NuZest, a new (to the US) soy free, dairy free, GMO free, and gluten free protein powder. I was really excited to try these, and I wanted to try them in the different ways I usually use protein powder.



I mixed the strawberry and cappuccino in a shaker cup (on two different days, not together), and they are by far the smoothest powders I’ve ever had. Actually, I’ve never had a protein powder that I could just shake and drink, usually I shake it and then whisk it to get the clumps out. This was totally smooth. I made the chocolate in a blender with peanut butter and frozen bananas and obviously had no issues with clumping or it being gritty.

I used the vanilla in a mug cake and it wasn’t gritty at all. It fluffed up just like normal flour would.




The strawberry tasted like strawberry milk but without the overly sweet, fake strawberry flavor. I was both nervous and excited for that one and purposely tried it with just almond milk in a shaker. I was pleasantly surprised.

I was really looking forward to the cappuccino one because I haven’t had coffee at all this year, and I kind of miss the flavor. It was good but not as strong as I was hoping for. I did dilute it more than the directions said though, so that was probably my own fault. I used 16oz of cashew milk instead of 12oz.

The vanilla was also good. It kind of had a super sweet vanilla flavor (but not bad) similar to other vanilla protein powders. It was awesome in a mug cake with chocolate chips.

I made the chocolate in a blender with peanut butter and frozen bananas. Somehow I missed taking a picture (probably because it was so good and I just wanted to drink it all), and it was delicious.

Ingredients and Nutrition

The ingredients are probably the most important part (along with taste) and they all seem to check out. There aren’t any weird ingredients, artificial colors, or flavors. There’s barely any measured sugar (0g in the plain, and 0.17g in the chocolate).and it gets it’s sweetness from Thaumatin, a protein from an African fruit. (I only looked it up because they were definitely sweet, but no sugar is listed in the ingredients anywhere.)


There are between 90-100 calories in a serving and between 20-22 grams of protein, which is pretty good for a vegan protein. There are less than 2 carbs in a serving, and a very small amount of  fat less than .5g. Sodium is a little higher than similar proteins, but nothing too crazy.

amino profile

I don’t know a lot about Amino Acid profiles, but I know that it can be difficult to make sure you get the right combination. This protein has all 9 Essential Amino Acids , plus 9 others.


It’s definitely one of the higher end vegan protein powders available, but it’s about the same price ($45 for 500g) that  I started buying Sun Warrior when I first found it. Hopefully, after it’s been out for a while, the price will come down a bit. It’s definitely a good buy for the ingredients (and lack of crappy ingredients), the taste, and the texture.

Peanut Butter Protein Cookies

Recipe: Peanut Butter Protein Cookies

Peanut Butter Protein CookiesThese cookies are really delicious and they’re healthy! They’re a cross between an oatmeal raisin cookie and a peanut butter cookie. You can add in raisins and chocolate chips if you like, or leave them out if you don’t.

There’s no added sugar in these. The sweetness comes from the banana. I prefer to use unsweetened vanilla almond milk, and natural chunky peanut butter (no sugar added).

This recipe makes about 12 cookies, and you could totally eat all of them in one sitting with no guilt. Okay, with minimal guilt. Make these in advance and they are great for a quick breakfast to grab while running out the door.

Peanut Butter Protein Cookies
Peanut Butter Protein CookiesPeanut Butter Protein Cookies

Peanut Butter Protein Cookies
Recipe type: Cookies, dessert, breakfast
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
  • 1 cup oats or oat flour
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 2 Tbsp peanut butter (or almond, cashew, sunflower, etc)
  • 1 Tbsp almond milk (or other non-dairy milk)
  • 1 Tbsp chia seeds (optional)
  • 1 Tbsp raisins (optional)
  • 1 Tbsp mini chocolate chips (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 350º F.
  2. Lightly spray cookie sheet with cooking spray.
  3. Grind oats in food processor.
  4. Add in protein powder and chia seeds. Blend both until well mixed.
  5. Add peanut butter, banana, and almond milk and blend on low until a dough forms. Add more milk if needed.
  6. Stir in raisins and/or chocolate chips.
  7. Form into tablespoon size cookies and bake for 8-10 minutes.

Peanut Butter Protein CookiesPeanut Butter Protein Cookies