Hi there, great to meet you! I’m Alison Andrews and I’m the voice and cook behind Loving It Vegan.
My husband Jaye Lentin, does the photos and the videos.
We both do a bit of recipe creating, with Jaye more recently taking on a little more of that side of things – always the savory things, the baking and sweet side of things is all mine!
My love for vegan food goes back a long way. I first went vegetarian (and sometimes pescatarian) in 1999.
When Jaye and I met in 2004, (and married in 2007) we went on a food and life adventure together. Before I met Jaye I was quite boring and limited when it came to food. Jaye had a very adventurous palate which very quickly rubbed off on me.
So we got on the vegan (and sometimes vegetarian) train in 2005 and then took a detour via the raw vegan and then fruitarian trains (??) and then jumped back on the vegan train and had all kinds of culinary adventures along the way.
So we had many years of making cashew creams and ice cream from bananas and noodles from zucchini and brownies from nuts and dates and cocoa and all that good stuff long before we even started this blog. Not to mention the fancier stuff like cheesecakes! You know what I’m talking about. We were doing it before it was trendy. 😁 Though we are super thrilled it’s a little trendy now!
People were always saying to us that we should open a restaurant. But as people who had done a bit of work in hospitality in our 20’s, we were like no way! Way too much hard work!
Nonetheless it seemed like the most important piece of information people seemed to want from us most of the time was: what was that recipe for cashew cheese dip that you made for that party? Or please tell me how to make that soup with the coconut cream or how on earth did you make those vegan chocolate cookies?
So…even though being recipe creators for a food blog isn’t something we always wanted to be when we grew up (it wasn’t a job that even existed when we were growing up) it was quite a natural fit for both of us.
Having been around the vegan food movement for a long time now, we’ve been pretty clear from the start with what we wanted Loving It Vegan to be about.
What Loving It Vegan Is All About
It’s all about the food! We aim to make delicious foods that anyone will enjoy. So if we’re making a vegan chocolate cake, we’re not trying to make a ‘healthy’ chocolate cake, we’re aiming for a chocolate cake that no one will even know is vegan. We want it to be as good as any cake you could ever eat. We love opening up people’s minds to the fact that vegan foods can be just as delicious with no need to sacrifice flavor.
We’re not snobs about ingredients, we use whatever we think is the most tasty for that particular recipe. This means we are happy to use white sugar – and yes it is vegan, most definitely in our part of the world, and if it’s not in your part of the world, then we leave it in your hands to find one that is not filtered with bone char if this is important to you, no judgement here. We’re also happy to use maple syrup or coconut sugar if we think that will be most tasty for the recipe and we don’t think it’s morally superior to white sugar in the slightest! White flour is also totally good with us.
We don’t believe that there is any one ‘perfect’ way of eating. How you eat is your business and for you to decide with the right professional guidance where appropriate. We don’t have any dietary recommendations for you and don’t think that stuff has any place on a food blog – unless it’s run by registered dietitians and we most definitely are not.
We create vegan recipes for everyone, not just vegans, and you won’t find judgy attitudes here, everyone is welcome!
We are not into ‘veganer than thou’ attitudes, you know the type – when people try to shame other people for not being vegan enough. This is a silly game and we’re not playing.
We are also not into any kind of body shaming or health shaming. We think it’s a damn shame how veganism has been co-opted as a means to shame us for our bodies. We’re not into it, and it doesn’t happen here. People come in all shapes and sizes and this is wonderful.
All our recipes are vegan all the way! I think you gathered that from the above, or you know, from our name.
So I don’t think I need to say too much more about that!
Some recipes are gluten-free too, but by no means all of them. We are not a gluten-free blog. I like to experiment and my mom is sensitive to gluten so I definitely sprinkle in some gluten-free stuff here and there.
We try to keep things simple, but we go where the recipe takes us! So if it’s a ready in 30 minutes kind of deal that’s awesome, but if it’s a more complicated affair that might take a few hours but be totally worth it we’ll happily do that one too.
We decide what recipes to make based on what people ask for and what people are searching for. The recipes you find here are not a food diary and don’t necessarily represent what we’re eating on a regular basis. So if you see a lot of cakes, it’s not like we’re just eating cake all day. This site is about the recipes, not about us, the focus is on the food.
We test the ever-loving-heck out of every recipe. This is not just pretty pictures and a recipe that doesn’t turn out, I test every recipe rigorously before it goes up on the blog.
We created an amazing product called ‘Simple Vegan Dinner Recipes‘. So you’ll never again ask the question: ‘What’s for Dinner?’ At least not without already smugly knowing the answer! That – you definitely want to check out (it’s even gluten-free!)
Vegan Food Blogger Awards 2019
We were extremely honoured to win in two categories in the 2019 Vegan Food Blogger Awards! We’re especially honored because the awards were voted for by readers.
We won in the categories of ‘Best Vegan Baking and Sweets’ and ‘Best Vegan Food Videos’.
Loving It Vegan Featured In!
We have also had our recipes featured and our blog mentioned in lots of amazing places online. Here are a few of them.
Random Facts About Us
I’m a scorpio with an aquarius moon and aquarius rising though I don’t really believe in any of that stuff. Jaye is a scorpio with a leo moon and cancer rising.
We’re both INFJ’s…and don’t really believe in that stuff either. 😉
We have two fur babies that we adore. More about them below, they get their own section! We don’t have any human children and no plans to make any. We are happy pet parents (and proud Aunt and Uncle to my sisters gorgeous two) and that’s enough for us.
I’m a singer/songwriter and Jaye is an amazing guitarist/songwriter and we released an album together called ‘Love’s A Cure’. Doing more music stuff is something that we’re always planning on doing. But right now it’s on the back burner a little bit.
We LOVE reading! I read like crazy and then keep adding to the ‘to read’ pile of books on Jaye’s bedside table until it gets crazy high. He reads only the best stuff because I’ve already filtered the ‘meh’ stuff out.
We love comedy and love to laugh.
I have a bachelors degree in English and History from the University of Cape Town.
Jaye studied film. Very handy since he spent years as a video director – and won several awards and created viral video campaigns featured on CNN. So now he can use all that knowledge and experience to make amazing recipe videos! I mean! Can it be more perfect?
Jaye is a surfer and skateboarder and gives me heart failure doing it. I do wish for safer hobbies!
We both love stand up paddleboarding (SUP) and are really pretty good at it!
We currently live in a small town in South Africa, though we have lived all over the world and all over South Africa too.
One night in 2011 when Alison and Jaye were living in Dubai, Alison walked past a bush, right outside their apartment and heard a little kittie voice calling to her. She sat down on the wall in front of the bush. Out came a little black and white kitten from the bush and sat down next to her, a small distance away, but quite companionably.
As other passers-by came past the kitten rushed back into the bush to hide (and didn’t make a peep), but when the coast was clear again he came out and sat down near Alison again. Soon, his little sister came back from wherever she had been and joined in the companionable sitting.
Alison knew she and these two kittens were destined to be great friends. She had a chat with a security guard working nearby to find out if the kittens had a mother he had seen, and was told that they had been living in the bushes there for a month (!) all alone, and there was no mother cat that had ever been seen.
Alison took them home with her and named them Frankie and Ernie. Jaye was soon on board as well (even though he had not been super keen on pets up to that point, he was soon a convert) and the adopted fur kids have been doted on ever since!
Alison is positive that Ernie recognized her as his future mother – even though she doesn’t really believe in that stuff – why else would he have called out to her from the bushes but stay totally silent with everyone else?
On their first visit to the vet a couple of days after going to live with Alison and Jaye, it was discovered that the kittens were two months old, so they had been living rough since they were one month old. Ernie had scratches all over his belly that the vet said would’ve come about from defending himself and his sister – the poor little guy!
Ernie is such a little scaredy cat now, Alison and Jaye think it’s because he used up all his bravery in his early months of life. And neither of the cats is very interested at all in ‘outside’ – they’ve been there done that, they want the safety of home, inside the home that is.
They still run and hide if the doorbell rings, think going to the vet is ‘the great betrayal’ and have a very strong opinion about ‘stranger danger’.
They bring enormous joy to their adoptive parents and everyone who gets to know them. They love South Africa after their relocation from Dubai and are thriving in their new environment. Here’s a look at the two cuties.
This is Ernie (short for Ernest) in his favorite sleeping/hiding place, in bed, under the duvet.
And this is Frankie – initially named ‘Frank’ because Alison didn’t know what was what! And then corrected to Frankie after her first vet visit and the clarifications were made, but what the heck, let’s say it’s short for Francesca, because that’s an awesome name!
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