Greek-American food blogger Mary Papadimos discusses all things vegan – Greek City Times
Mary is a Greek-American food blogger who turned her passion for veganism into a lifestyle of its own. I had the chance to chat with Mary as she discusses all about her food philosophy.
You can find Mary’s amazing vegan recipes and her vegan cookbook e-book on Instagram @upbeetandkaleingit.
Mary, can you introduce yourself to the Greek City Times community? Tell us about you.
Hi all! My name is Mary Papadimos and I am a 29 year old Greek American food blogger living in Tampa, Florida. I am married to my wonderful husband, Alex, who is a second year general surgery resident.
My passion for veganism and blogging started over six years ago. I started my blog and my Instagram account during my second year of graduate school. What started out as a hobby quickly grew into a lifestyle and a brand in its own right when I started working with food and wellness companies.
My heart and soul was dedicated to developing recipes and sharing the foods and products I loved throughout my graduate studies.
Eventually I got a double JD / MBA in May 2020 and knew exactly what I wanted to do next: turn my business into a full time job instead of practicing law. This is exactly what I did and I haven’t looked back since, I love what I do every day. Developing recipes and sharing veganism with my amazing community brings me the greatest joy.
What is your food philosophy?
I believe a hundred percent in feeding your body as much healthy, plant-based foods as possible, but I also believe in balance. While my husband and I eat very healthy everyday, we still enjoy my desserts and indulge in whatever we want on occasion. I certainly don’t believe in depriving myself, but I feel better when I focus on consuming a majority of whole foods.
How did you get started eating a plant-based diet?
During my last year of college, I saw a documentary that showed the horrific conditions in which factory-farmed animals are raised. It really shook me deep inside and I was disgusted by the lack of humanity, the disgusting conditions and the horrible treatment these animals endured. It made me want to never eat meat again, or even fish! I first became a vegetarian, but then made the final transition to veganism during my graduate studies. While I think a vegan diet, when done right, is the healthiest, I am one hundred percent vegan to my animal friends. The voiceless need a voice and I’m here to speak up and show people how easy and amazing it is to be vegan.
What challenges have you encountered?
If I had a dime for the number of times people laughed at veganism, I would be a very rich woman. At first, when people judged me or made negative comments about going vegan, I took it too personally. Now, I don’t mind at all because I fully live my truth and am strong in my beliefs. I never found it difficult to eat vegan other than going out to restaurants, which I only did occasionally anyway. I have always liked to prepare 95% of my meals at home.
If you could give one piece of advice to new vegans, what would it be?
You are doing an amazing thing, so don’t be discouraged if you mess up along the way. Additionally, use as many resources as possible such as blogs, websites, books, and any relevant information to make your transition to veganism comfortable and well-balanced.
I blog because it’s not only my job, but also my passion. Reaching hundreds of thousands of great people around the world brings me so much happiness. Watching people prepare my recipes and tag me in posts is very rewarding, and the support from my upbeetandkaleingit community is unmatched. Working with food brands is amazing and I’m constantly looking to develop my cooking and baking skills. Most of my work doesn’t look like work to me because it’s so much fun.
What makes your website / profile different from all the others?
While there are tons of vegan blogs out there, mine is hard to beat in terms of ease and convenience. I want people to see how accessible veganism is and for me that means not complicating recipes. My brand encompasses an easy style of cooking and cooking with real ingredients. Life is incredibly busy these days, but preparing food shouldn’t be stressful, so it’s something I really focus on.
What’s your next one for you? Goals and dreams?
I plan to continue to develop my brand, upbeetandkaleingit. It means expanding my blog, Instagram and tiktok to reach more people. I would love to continue working with amazing food brands and eventually create my own line of vegan desserts. Having my own tangible product is the end goal for sure.
Be sure to try some of Mary’s recipes. I have some and they taste divine !!
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