My name is Marissa Bronfman, and I am a proud two-time entrepreneur, Canadian living in India, big animal lover, vegan, hungry in every way. I am the Founder and CEO of Moxie Media, a boutique digital media agency and Bowl Bar, a vegan food and beverage company. 

I truly believe in the #futureisgreen and it’s up to all of us to make it so. Yoso is creating delicious dairy-free products that are accessible and taste amazing, not to mention, saving animals, the planet and our health. I’m thrilled to be a part of this vegan community. 

We asked a few questions about her dairy-free lifestyle as part of this series, Living Dairy Free:

Why are you dairy-free?

I’ve been vegetarian most of my life because I love animals and do not believe in any aspect of factory farming – it’s terrible for animals, the planet and human health. That being said, I used to be a cheese addict! Breakfast, lunch and dinner. When I moved to Bombay I was getting sick more often and decided to heal myself through foods. I started slowly cutting out dairy and very quickly lost my taste for it. I am so much healthier being dairy-free and I feel better about not supporting the cruel dairy industry. About a year ago I launched my own vegan food and beverage company in India called Bowl Bar. We are proudly dairy-free and love to offer people delicious and nutritious alternatives. 

Top five favourite dairy-free products?

  1. Bowl Bar raw, vegan chia seed pudding with banana and pomegranate (A Bollywood celeb favorite in Bombay).
  2. Bowl Bar nut mylk with almond, cashew, cinnamon, dates and pink Himalayan sea salt. It’s divine but only available on special occasions. 
  3. Yoso unsweetened coconut yogurt. I love this in everything! Subtle and creamy.
  4. My homemade vegan caesar dressing, it’s even creamier than the original and coming soon to Bowl Bar.
  5. Manitoba Harvest vegan hemp protein for energizing smoothie bowls. 

Favourite local spot to eat that accommodates dairy-free?

I’ve been a huge fan of Fresh restaurants for many, many years and it’s always the first place I run to when I’m back in Toronto. I met the founder Ruth Tal recently and made her some Bowl Bar chia seed pudding, she loved it and I was hugely flattered! At Fresh I usually order the Green Goddess bowl on brown rice, order a large green juice and sometimes indulge in the genius quinoa onion rings with vegan garlic mayo. 

In India I would say Bowl Bar, of course! And Eat Thai in Bandra. They have so many gorgeous, delicious dishes that use coconut cream instead of dairy. 

Favourite place to shop for groceries?

I was a Whole Foods devotee when I lived in Nolita (New York) and Yorkville (Toronto.) I love Noah’s on Bloor at Spadina (they’re next to Fresh, so it’s easy to have a great meal and then pick up everything you need for your pantry.) I recently discovered Nature’s Emporium in Newmarket because my mother’s animal sanctuary Wishing Well Sanctuary is nearby. They are hands-down the best organic, healthy destination I’ve ever been to!

In India I shop at local markets for fruits and veggies, buy my organic pulses and grains from Conscious Food and have a couple people who import specialty health products for me. I also bring at least a suitcase full of ingredients and fun new health finds with me when I fly back.