Winter Mountain Retreat in Canmore, Alberta

Winter Mountain Retreat

Hey Everyone; okay so I know I’ve been super MIA from my blog lately and apologize, but, I have been super busy working on so many exciting projects!  This is not a traditional recipe blog post but I really wanted to share this wonderful experience with you.  The beautiful Tracy Stafford from Integration Pilates in Edmonton, Alberta organized an amazing yoga/mediation retreat weekend in Canmore, Alberta in the rocky mountains and I was offered the opportunity to prepare a raw vegan menu during the weekend which turned out to be such a rewarding experience.

This was my first time preparing meals for a group and I was nervous but excited at the same time.  I knew I would succeed because I am super organized and I had learned how to write and execute a menu while completing the Level 1 Fundamentals of Raw Cuisine course through Matthew Kenney Culinary.

I wasn’t sure if the guests had much experience with raw vegan food so I chose to create familiar dishes raw vegan style ๐Ÿ™‚ Everyone loves tacos and I love making them, so we had taco Saturday where everyone had the opportunity to assemble their own and the response was amazing!  Tacos included walnut nut meat, pico de gallo, guacamole and cashew sour cream served in Romaine shells.  The recipe for these are actually posted here on my blog.

Mornings started off with a healthy energizing smoothie, meditation, yoga/pilates then brunch.  The first morning we had buckwheat porridge parfaits; one of my favorite go-to protein packed breakfasts.  The second morning we had carob chia pudding, and hemp seed yogurt with coconut, fruit, pecans, and walnuts which were also a huge hit!

You can’t forget about dessert! That’s right; dessert at a raw food yoga retreat! Of course this is healthy dessert; I decided to show everyone how to make chocolate and caramel.  Everyone could not believe how easy this was!  You can find my recipe for chocolate and caramel here.

I had so much fun teaching everyone how to prepare easy, fun nutritious food.  I even had the opportunity to show everyone how easy it is to make your own nut milk!  Once you have tried homemade nut milk you will never buy store-bought nut milk again, the taste and creamy texture of homemade nut milk does not even compare!  Here is a basic almond milk recipe:


1 cup almonds, soaked for 12 hours

3 – 4 cups filtered water


  1. Drain and rinse almonds very well.
  2. Place sprouted almonds with filtered water in a blender and blend for 30 seconds.
  3. Strain in a bowl through a nutmilk bag or cheesecloth.
  4. Place in a mason jar or sealed glass container. Will keep in the refrigerator for 3 โ€“ 5 days.

Tracy took the guests on a guided hike through the grassy lakes area and even though it was snowing it was so beautiful and everyone had a great time!  There is something so magical and peaceful about being in the mountains around all that lush green and breathing in the fresh mountain air. 

Even though it was a lot of work preparing and prepping for this, I left the retreat feeling relaxed, rejuvenated and with more passion than ever about raw vegan food.  I like to keep educating myself and improving my skills so as soon as I got home I signed up for a Plant Based Desserts course through the Matthew Kenney Culinary School which I have now completed and will post my experience soon ๐Ÿ™‚ 

This retreat was so successful we are planning the second one!  If you live in the area and are interested, send me an email and I will keep you posted ๐Ÿ™‚ rawrevive@gmail.com

Thank you for reading!

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Crystal Bonnet is an International Raw Food Chef, Instructor and Cookbook Author. Her culinary passion started with living, plant-based food in her own kitchen which led her to train at industry leading culinary schools. Read more.

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