Loreta Ruiz is changing things up! The chef and owner of ‘La Vegana Mexicana’ in Santa Ana, California, is offering plant-based options for people who love delicious Mexican dishes, but are restricted to a gluten-free and vegan diet.
The innovative chef credits her daughter for helping her transform her diet and lifestyle, and while she was not sure if she would get all the nutrients she needed, she realized there was a whole world to explore within vegan cuisine and ingredients.
“My 85 year-old parents are strong and healthy as a result of investing in their bodies and eating a predominantly plant-based diet,” Loreta explained. “When my daughter turned 18 and adopted a vegan lifestyle due to a sudden onset of autoimmune disease, I began to suspect that there was a vegan gene in our DNA.”
She continued. “As I removed meat from my diet, I realized that I felt healthier and consequently converted to a vegan lifestyle thereafter.”
Offering a variety of traditional dishes with vegan ingredients, Loreta has had a meaningful impact in Orange County. The businesswoman explained that creating her dishes was “challenging” at first, but she persevered until achieving the perfect recipe for her customers.
“Eventually I discovered that many Mexican dishes are plant-based by nature or have no animal products, and for those that do, I could make some modifications to achieve a culturally appropriate dish with a vegan twist,” Loreta revealed.
Sharing many of her recipes with the vegan community on social media, Loreta has gained a loyal following, as her delectable creations proved to be a total success. Even declared as having the “best vegan tamales.”