Vegan Vigilante | Episode 3: Eatin' Vegan from the 99 Cents Only Store

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Welcome to the third episode of the Vegan Vigilante. This week, Sunwarrior challenged our good friend Jason Wrobel to up his game even more. We sent him to a 99 cent store to find all his ingredients. That’s right; we didn’t even allow him the extra cent of a dollar store.

Jason still has to make something delicious, healthy, and plant-based after his less expensive shopping trip. Unusual? You bet! Difficult? Oh yeah! Possible? We’ll have to wait and see what our celebrity chef can manage. At least we let him use his own equipment this time.

Jason finds himself walking the aisles, surprised to discover that there are some decently healthy options anywhere if you look hard enough. Did you know some 99 cent stores and dollar stores carry fresh produce? High-end grocery stores often reject food that is too ugly to display, like bananas that are too curvy or too short, apples that aren’t quite as red, or celery that is too green. Discount stores snatch these up. Same quality food at lower prices. They also buy regular produce in season. There are even organic options. We may have made this too easy on the Vegan Vigilante.

Jason easily bags fresh tomatoes, garlic, avocado, spaghetti squash, asparagus, bell peppers, and so much more. Sixteen dollars later, he has the ingredients to make a fantastic summer salad that could satisfy a group of foodies at a fancy dinner party. We’ll have to make next week harder.

Spaghetti Squash Summer Salad


  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 1 whole Spaghetti squash
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • 4 celery hearts, chopped
  • 2 radishes, chopped
  • 2 cups asparagus cut into smaller pieces
  • 1 orange bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 can organic kidney beans
  • Ground chia seeds
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • Black pepper to taste
  • A dash of chili powder
  • A drizzle of olive oil
  • A splash of red wine vinegar
  • Pistachios, roasted
Total Time

Prep Time

15 min

  1. Split spaghetti squash in half and deseed it. Poke holes in the squash so it can cook evenly. Put one clove of crushed garlic in each half. Bake spaghetti squash in over on 400 degrees for 25 minutes. Steam your asparagus for eight minutes.
  2. Combine chopped celery, tomato, radishes, pepper, and kidney beans in a large bowl
  3. Use a fork to scrape out the spaghetti squash from the shell.
  4. Add asparagus and spaghetti squash to chopped vegetables
  5. Add seasonings, oil, and vinegar
  6. Mix all together.
  7. Plate and top with diced avocado, pistachio, and a sprinkle of chia seeds

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