entrees

Cheezey Kale & Broccoli Casserole

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As the holidays approach, we begin to revisit some of our old time favorites! Right? I love looking back at recipes from my childhood and revisiting them. I always enjoy making some of my old favorites part of my new favorites list by switching a few ingredients to make it vegan and gluten free. I have always been a huge cheese and creaminess person. It was seriously the worst part of my transition, in my mind at least. Finding what my other options would be was so helpful. I really recommend taking some of your favorite recipes and creating them with new swaps you find.

Daiya came out with an awesome array of boxed macaroni cheese to make cooking and the transition even easier at home. I thought that it would be fun to create macaroni and cheese casserole with one of the boxes and it came out fantastic. I always love asking my non vegan friends to taste test so I can get a good read on it as well as share with them how good eating vegan can be. One of my friends who eats dairy free most of the time, due to allergy, took a bite and said it wad good but that he really could only have a few bites because he then reminded me he was dairy intolerant. I had to laugh, because that mean he thought what I had made was full of dairy and gluten. So I did really well this time, wahooo!!

I always have to find a way to get some greens in, so you bet that I was able to do it here. I thought that kale and broccoli would go great with the four cheese flavor. I also wanted to add a little protein and flavor so I grabbed some Beyond Meat chicken strips and cubed those up and threw them into the mix. It was really simple and took no time to prepare the mac and cheese and then add the other ingredients together and pop it into the oven to add some crispiness. You can use some Gluten Free bread crumbs or some crumbled up chips, for some extra crunch. It is always important to add texture to a dish. For example, when I am eating something soft and creamy like yogurt, a crunchy granola adds a nice touch to the experience. Here, you have a warm and gooey cheesy dish that would go great with a little crunch.

One recommendation, because the chicken comes in a frozen package. When you use the chicken strips, let them thaw for about 15-20 minutes so that you can chopped them a little easier, or you can run them under warm water really quickly. Get excited to create something really yummy and flavorful that everyone will love. You can’t make a mistake here, there is so much flavor and texture, you just have to take the time to make and try this recipe out. Also, adding your other favorite veggies would be absolutely fine as well. Have fun and be assured that bringing this to any party will work wonders on everyones tastebuds.

 

 

Cheesy Kale & Broccoli Casserole

Casserole Ingredients:

•1 box Macaroni cheese

•1/4 Large Onion finely chopped

•1 Tablespoon coconut oil

•1/2 bag Beyond Chicken strips (defrost out of the freezer for 20 minutes OR run under warm water quickly to defrost and chop into smaller cubes)

•5 Dino Kale stalks – de stemmed and chopped.

•1/2 Head large broccoli cut into small pieces.

•Salt and pepper to taste

•1 Cup Daiya mozzarella

Method:

-Pre heat oven to 400.

-Boil water and Make macaroni and cheese according to package.

-Steam kale and broccoli for 7 to 10 minutes, to soften.

-Cut onion into small pieces and sauté for 3-5 minutes with coconut oil then add chicken cubes to warm for another 5 minutes.

-Then add greens and sauté for another five minutes. (Salt & pepper to taste).

-Add 1/2 Cup mozzarella shreds. Let the cheese melt and then add the Daiya Mac and Cheese to mix thoroughly.

-Add remaining mozzarella on top and bake at 400 for 8 minutes, then broil for 5 minutes after adding bread crumbs or crumbled chips for the last 3 minutes.

-Let cool for 10 minutes and then serve immediately or let sit overnight and the warm up. The flavor gets even more yummy and cheesy!

 

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dessert

Pistachio Ice Cream

EAA295F1-F697-42DE-BA53-C13BE70C9E57I love ice cream!! Don’t hate, appreciate. I am sure you can even relate!!I was never really a sweets or ice cream person, but I have always had a love for ice cream. It was either strawberry or peanut butter flavors, that I would get st the shop. Actually, side story, this local place in my hometown would rotate flavors and I’d call each week to ask if strawberry was in the mix, of so, I’d be there! True story! I have always loved fresh fruit and the sugar from fruit. I grew up in a household where we didn’t really get a lot of sugary or artificially sweetened foods. I am so thankful now that I was taught at an early age to stay away from artificial ingredients. Though I’m sure you can imagine, I wasn’t too stoked back then about not having all the sugary sweets.

After graduating college I traveled to Europe on a solo backpacking trip. Yep, SOLO! I’m crazy…. or cool, however you wanna look at it, and as you get to know me I’m sure you’ll understand. On this Euro trip, I had vegan gelato at some small cafe and it was pistachio flavor. My world was changed forever! FOREVERRRR. I now had a want and need for pistachio gelato in my life, though as some of you may know, gelato is definitely not vegan. After that if I ever got the chance to find a vegan pistachio gelato or ice cream, you bet your buns I got it!

Fast forward to now, well, I have been craving pistachio ice cream for a while now and have been meaning to make it. I finally had time and this is what I came up with. I have been making “nice cream,” as a healthy and non guilty treat, with bananas for a while now. It’s great! But this time, especially because I wanted the ice cream to be as green looking as possible, I decided to use avocado. Avocado has healthy fats, potassium, and other really great nutrients, so why not try it in an ice cream? It worked! It was fantastic and I can’t wait to make it again! I used setton farms pistachios and then chopped up one of their really yummy chewy bites and topped the ice cream with that for a little added sweetness and flavor.

I hope you enjoy the ice cream as much as I did. It’s pretty easy to make. The hardest part about this dang recipe is that you potentially have to wait over night for it. I know, so sad… OOOORR if you’re like me, you place it in the freezer for four hours and hope it’s mostly frozen and then dig in, haha. It’s your creation, you get to do whatever you want!

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Yummy Pistachio Ice Cream

2 1/2 Cups Oat milk (or any other non dairy milk)

1 large Avocado (or 2 small Avocados)

1 Cup pistachios – I used Setton Farms pistachios (get ready to peel them, or you can go find shelled ones too…)

1 Cup soft medjool dates

Optional for color and added nutrients: 1/4 teaspoon spirulina (highly recommended for color), and or a handful of spinach. You can also use 1/2 teaspoon matcha powder from navitas for more color and added nutrients.

*** As a sweet and yummy topping, I used Setton Farms Pistachio bites, which I chopped up and threw on top. Ok, Yum.

Method:

-First grind the pistachios into a powder, then set aside in a bowl.

-Then pour the milk into a blender and if your add any of the powders or spinach blend that together first. Then add the pitted dates and blend until they are all the way blended. It should be a very thick milky mixture now.

-Then blend in the avocado and once it’s become smooth, add in the pistachio powder.

-Pour the mixture in a container to place in the freezer for st least 6 hours, but preferably overnight.

-Take the ice cream out of the fridge and let it thaw for about 15-20 minutes. Then use and ice cream scoop to make perfect scoops. It will be slightly icy and may not scoop in all in one piece. That’s ok, I had to scratch the ice with my scoop a good few times and then pack it into the scoop to really get a nice ball formed, then repeat with as many scoops as you’d like. This makes enough for 3-4 people to have two scoops.

enjoy my loves!!

XoXo, Stephie

entrees

Stuffed Bell Peppers

39CF5BD5-16F0-4217-8F85-88F07F8C5309I am a strong believer in flavorful cooking. Yes I said it, I will not eat grass, I will not eat something that doesn’t make my tastebuds go wild! Ok, wait, I take that back… a little… I do eat things that are good for me nutritionally and that perhaps don’t taste the total best. Sometimes I am lucky enough to have a wheatgrass shot or some fresh algae, and that to most doesn’t seem tasty, but to me I’m so use to these wonderfully nutritious items I’ll take em down knowing the benefits. It takes time to get there, don’t worry, and meanwhile I still eat really yummy spiced up foods!! I recommend starting to work on your spice cabinet pronto! Try to Grab organic when you can. I know it’s a little more expensive but it’s worth it. Your health is worth it. Buying all the spices upfront can get pricey, but with each recipe, you might find one new spice you need to purchase and it won’t seem so crazy expensive buying one or two at a time.

So back to the recipe. I actually never had a stuffed bell pepper when I was a child. Is that crazy? Did you eat them a lot when you were growing up? Once I got older and I realized how much fun it was to put a bunch of ingredients together and stuff them in a vegetable, I did! The possibilities are endless! You can flavor and add ingredients basically however you’d like, this is just one of my versions.

I always love to do Cajun or taco seasoning with my bell peppers, but I am also a huge Italian flavors fan!! So you could absolutely use Italian season and fresh basil and even a little tomato sauce to give those flavors. Though I might use garbanzo or white beans instead of black beans with an Italian version, which this recipe calls for. I also like to add a whole grain such as brown rice or quinoa to add nutrients and quinoa packs some protein. I also have a version of this recipe where I just used more beans and vegetable without the quinoa. Hit me up if you want that recipe.

I have made stuffed bell peppers a ton of times. They look fun and taste great. They are pretty dang hearty too. You can serve them with a side of salad or if there is something else you prefer, do that! Do what makes you feel good and what tastes good to you. Share these yummy suckers with your friends and family as well!! They’ll thank you for it.

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Stuffed Bell Peppers 

4 Bell peppers (top cut off, de-seeded and baked for 10 minutes at 400)

1 1/2 C Quinoa cooked (or rice )

1 small Onion

2 cloves of garlic

8 Mushrooms

1 Medium zucchini (chopped)

1/2  Package Taco Seasoning

1/2 Rounded Cup of Daiya cheese, any flavor your heart desires!   OR You can use half a cream cheese tub

1/2 can of Black Beans (BPA free can or box or soak and boiling your own is even better!)

Optional: instead of beans, you can grab a meat substitute like “ground meat” or another favorite. (I just try to stay away from processed as much as possible which is why beans are such a great low fat protein option).

Method:

-Cook the Quinoa according to package, make sure you rinse it properly before cooking. Set aside to cool until it is ready to mix with the other ingredients.

-If you want your bell peppers to stand, Cut the tops off and take the inner seeds out of the bell peppers. If you would like to lay them on their side, keep the tops on and cut the peppers in half lengthwise and take the seeds out, spray oil on the the bell peppers and bake them at 400 degrees for 10 minutes. Then take them out and let them cool to the touch before stuffing.

-Sauté the chopped onions and garlic (about 5 minutes), then add zucchini (cook 3-5 minutes, then add the mushrooms and sauté (for 3 more minutes).

-Once the veggies are sautéed and the quinoa is ready, place them and the black beans in a food processor and pulse a few times to mix together. Add the cheese and pulse one more time.                                 ——-If you’re adding cream cheese, you can spoon that in with these ingredients to the food processor as well. ——————-If you don’t have a food processor, cut the vegetables into very small pieces and just mix the cheese into the other ingredients in a bowl.

-Spoon the mixture into the bell peppers and place on the baking sheet. Bake at 400 for 20 minutes. If desired, at 15 minutes, place some vegan cheese on top.

-Then, please enjoy.

love, Stephie xoxo

 

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appetizers

7 Layer Bean Dip

374E99E3-0479-44B1-A91C-C8073EDB5079Ok, So I’m going to be real honest here. Growing up, dad wasn’t really around. So football parties and get togethers weren’t a huge thing around our house. BUTTT for whatever reason… Superbowl parties always took place at our house! If I had to work during the game I found myself so bummed! I realized shortly after this behavior that it wasn’t that I was bummed to miss the game, but I was bummed to miss the party and eat food. LOL. Yes, it bummed me out to miss the food. I want good food too ok?! I was always in charge of making the dips. Bean dip, Onion dip, and Ranch dip. Of course, as you can probably imagine, 7 layer bean dip isn’t traditionally made vegan. So naturally I had to veganise it.

I am pretty sure I ave said this to you all before. When you are first transitioning, find a few of your favorite dishes and make them vegan! When your comfortable making something its so much easier to make it healthier with different swaps. So that is exactly what I did. I think Tofutti Brand makes a nice “sour cream” and for the cheese on top, Earth Island, formerly known as Follow your heart, makes a good shredded cheese. You do need to check your refried beans and make sure that they are also vegan. I was actually surprised that many refried beans still contain lard or other animals fats in them. I get it, they make it taste better, i guess… But they have been time and time again been called out for being unhealthy. But whatever, not trying to call anyone out here right now. I am just saying, check your beans at every meal.

If you wanted to keep it super wholesome and real, you could make a sour cream out of nuts, homemade, and you could take some black beans and spices and blend them into a dip to make “refried” beans. That is totally fine with me and I actually encourage it, I just know not everyone has the time to do that or learn it, at least perhaps not at this present moment.

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7 Layer Bean Dip

-1 can refried beans

-1/2 package taco seasoning

-1/2 package of sour cream (I like Tofutti)

-Home made or store bought guacamole 

-1/2 package of vegan cheese (I like Earth Island or Daiya)

-6oz Can of sliced olives 

-3 tomatoes chopped 

-4 scallions finely chopped

Method:

-Mix almost the entire half package of taco seasoning, save a little to sprinkle over the sour cream later, then save the other half package for next time you make this. 

-It’s a pretty easy layering game. Put the ingredients into a square Pyrex dish in the order the list goes. 

-Serve immediately, or cover and place in the fridge to set for a few hours. You can keep this dip up to 3-5 days. Bring this to a party and don’t say it’s dairy free, see if anyone says anything…

entrees

Creamy Alfredo Sauce

39A6CA8F-130B-4AEB-BFB6-52975BA9AD27I am a sucker for anything creamy! Cheese, dips, sauces, anything. Unfortunately so many options today have dairy in them. I love Italian food and when I first started eating plant based, the easiest things for me to create and cook were things I was use to eating and making . I suggest any of you looking for healthier plant based options, to just find a few dishes you really love and then veganize them! Stick to what you know and are somewhat comfortable with! I think my first few recipes I learned how to make over and over again we’re Caesar salad, pasta recipes, taco salad, and tacos! There are so many possibilities.

Nuts are really the star in cheesy and creamy recipes. Cashews and macadamia nuts are the creamiest, but almonds, sunflower seeds, Brazil nuts, etc., work just as well. As you dive into using different nuts to make different meals, you’ll start to get use to which ones work best for you and the many recipes you’ll be making. You’ll notice which ones have certain consistencies that end up working better for different recipes as well…. In this recipe, cashews take the win. If you or a loved one have a nut allergy, you can try raw and soaked sunflower seeds in place of cashews!

As much as I tell you about what brands have great dairy free options, I like to try eating as close to the source and as homemade, if possible. Even though plants are healthier, by over processing we sort of miss the point as well. So eventually, after you find your swaps and get comfortable with what you can use instead of actual dairy, I urge you to try getting even closer to Whole Foods like using nuts for creaminess and using beans or lentils instead of fake meats. But that is for another time, for now let’s just make some really yummy Alfredo sauce!

So as I said, there are so many options that you can exactly swap for another, especially in the dairy department. For example, to make a traditional Alfredo sauce that uses butter, cream, and Parmesan cheese as the main ingredients, you can find the vegan versions of those and be fine. I took it a step further to make it from unprocessed and whole food ingredients to bring you an even healthier version. Let’s get cooking towards some yummy and creamy goodness, shall we????

Creamy Alfredo Pasta

-1 package of Store bought Zoodles or spiralize 2 large zucchini. (You can spiralize other squash 94 sweet potato too)

-1/2 medium onion (chopped)

-1 Garlic Clove (minced, I put mine through a garlic press)

– 12-14oz package of Brussels sprouts or 1 head of broccoli, or really any veggie you would like to add (chopped)

Creamy Decadent Alfredo Sauce

-1/2 C Cashews (soaked for 2-4 hours)

-1-2 Cloves Garlic (I used my garlic press)

-1/2 C Water

-1/3 C nutritional yeast

-1 teaspoon Pink Himalayan salt

-1 teaspoon lemon juice

-1/4 teaspoon pepper

Method:

– Place chopped onions in a pan and heat on medium for about 3 minutes with a pinch of salt. Then add the minced garlic and stir for 2 minutes.

-Add your veggies and sautée them until tender, about 8 minutes. Add the zoodles and let them warm with the veggies for about 4 minutes.

-While stirring and sautéing the veggies, you can make the Alfredo sauce by placing all the ingredients in a high speed blender or if you don’t have a good blender, a food processor should work just as well. The consistency should be somewhat thick. If you like your Alfredo a little more runny, add a little more water.

-Then add the Alfredo sauce and coat all the zoodles and veggies and let it warm together for about 3-5 minutes and Viola!!! Now please don’t burn your mouth as you hurriedly scoop the pasta onto your plate and devour!!

***Optional: You can use gluten-free pasta noodles or any other zoodle pasta instead of zucchini, such as sweet potato or carrots, etc…too. And you can use any variation of veggies or no veggies at all if you want to keep to just a simple Alfredo pasta.

***Remember, my recipes are just a guideline to the magic you can create in the kitchen. 😍😍😍😍

 

 

 

 

 

 

appetizers

Spicy Roasted Cauliflower

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I love cauliflower! It is so healthy and so versatile in cooking. So many people have gotten crazy creative with how to use it in cooking and baking. It is so great!!! You can steam it and then throw it in a blender in order to add creaminess to a non dairy soup. You can also make rice or mashed potatoes out of it. Some people are using cauliflower as a pizza crust and many vegan restaurants are making buffalo cauliflower appetizers, which is probably one of my top favorites out there! If you haven’t tried buffalo cauliflower bites, that is a total must!

Cauliflower yields some great nutrients and antioxidants! It is very high in vitamin C! One medium size head is more than your daily intake of Vitamin C needed and is about 11g of protein! It is also high in Vitamin B-6, Potassium, Magnesium, and calcium. Cauliflower contains a good amount of fiber. Fiber is important for digestive health and can even reduce the risk of several chronic diseases, especially those relating to your bowels. It is also high in fiber and antioxidants which are great in helping your body and cells combat disease, such as cancer.

To be completely honest, growing up, I did not care much about cauliflower. I thought it smelled bad and when I grew up it took me a while to get around to cooking it. I had memories from childhood and was slightly scared of it because I didn’t even know where to start in trying to cook this awkwardly hard and  rough plant. Once I got over the hump and cooked it once, I decided it wasn’t so bad. Moral of the story, if you’re like me, and have never cooked with it and are a little frightened, just try making it once or twice and you’ll get the hang of it. The first time I attempted to cook it, I steamed in for about 9 minutes and then threw it into my high speed blender to make a creamy soup. Now, I also enjoy baking it in the oven or chopping it up small and sautéing it. The other night, I finally tried the cauliflower pizza from Trader Joe’s, AND IT CAME OUT BOMB!!! Anyways, we’re talking about baking it, so shall we get to that portion??

Recently, I went to this really great Italian restaurant with some friends. The Cauliflower appetizer, minus the butter it normally would be cooked in, was one of the things I could eat on the menu. Normally it’s made drizzled in butter so I asked the waiter if he’d mind asking the chef to use oliv oil instead. He said, “YES!!!” So the way they prepped it was with chili, oil, and capers. Myself and my non plantbased friends thoroughly enjoyed it. My friends even said they thought it was the best thing out of everything on the table they had eaten! Win! Well… Naturally, I had to make this at home, IMMEDIATELY!! And I did. It’s pretty simple. Here’s the recipe. Enjoy my beautiful friends!!

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Spicy Roasted Cauliflower: 
-1 Head Cauliflower
-3 Tablespoons olive oil
-1 Tablespoon Chili Sauce (I used sambal) you can also use 2 Tablespoons for you spicy lovers!!
-1 teaspoon Pink Himalayan Salt
-1 teaspoon Black Pepper
Method:
-Preheat oven to 425.
– While oven preheats, wash and cut the cauliflower. The way I do it, is by sticking a knife slightly slanted at the base where the root is, almost as if to cut a hole in the bottom. You’re basically trying to take the root out. Once you’ve done that, you can break the pieces off and cut the big pieces into smaller pieces.
-Throw all the pieces into a bowl adding all the ingredients and mix it well to evenly coat the cauliflower. Sometimes adding half the ingredients and mixing, and then adding the rest works a little easier for coating!
-Once the cauliflower is coated, oil a baking pan or dish and put in the oven. Roast for 25 minutes.
-Cauliflower should feel a bit softer. If you like it crunchier, check it at 15-20 minutes.
-Take it out and let it cool. Then top it with capers for an added flavor burst.
-Enjoy.
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appetizers, entrees

Pasta Salad

97C40395-84C4-4B85-9858-3EA2C9596699Im going to be quite frank with you… I LOVE PASTA!! I could eat it with an oil based sauce, such as vegan butter or olive oil, I could do red sauce, pink sauce, cheezy sauce, pesto sauce, etc… So which genius decided to make it cold and add vegetables and serve as a lunch or side??!! I’m going to say, probably a wonderful Italian woman! Maybe I’m wrong, correct me, contact and tell me!!

Anyways, pasta salad… It is a great side dish or even served as lunch! I had it for lunch today and it was super satisfying. It’s been really hot in Southern California and I am not seeing the fun in cooking and baking during the day, so most of my dishes during the day are left overs from the night before, salads, or smoothies and nice cream, hehe.

I made this pasta salad last night and let it sit in the fridge to develop all of the flavors. Sitting overnight with any food is truly my favorite, it soaks up the flavor more and it’s always so easy to place out to eat or warm up, in this case, just get it out of the fridge, it’s suppose to be cold.

The flavors of the Italian dressing and crispy raw vegetables go together so great! The slight tang from the vinegar and flavor from the Italian seasoning is wonderful! I suggest you try this recipe and if you’d like to add anything you’re more than welcome. I mean, at the end of the day, this is a salad and who is to yell you exactly what you can or can’t put in it…???

I love olives and I messed around with a few different kinds. I think my favorite combo was black olives and kalmata olives. Either or would be fine too! If you’d like to add a little vegan cheese or some garbanzo beans for extra protein, GO RIGHT AHEAD! Create that shizzzz!

 

Pasta Salad

-1/2 package Spiral pasta

-3 Green onions or 1/4 white onion

-1 small can Black olives or 1/2 jar Kalmata olives

-1/2 Bell pepper (any color you want)

-5 Tablespoons Italian dressing

-Salt & pepper to taste

*Optional: vegan cheese, kidney beans or garbanzo beans.

Method:

-Cook pasta to package directions, then let it cool down or run it under cold water. 

-While the pasta cooks, chop all the ingredients and place in a bowl and toss with the dressing.

-Once your pasta is cold, toss it with the other ingredients and if you can’t wait, then serve it right away, ORRR for better results, let it sit for 4 hours or overnight.

***If you decide to add the other options I listed, make sure you add those as well! Beans add healthy nutrients and protein!

AND remember: Tag me with your creations, I LOOOOOVE seeing your recipe creations! Peace and Love my friends. ❤️💜🌱🥦💋

 

 

Smoothies // Smoothie bowls

Homemade Almond Mylk

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I have always heard of making dairy free milks but it just seems like such a process…  Right???? It does, util you actually do it. Then you actually realize, other than having to plan a tiny bit, it isn’t that hard after all. By planning, I mean, soaking the almonds 6-8 hours before. The blending and everything else takes like 10 minutes…

What is really amazing about making anything homemade, especially milk, you know what is going into it. You know that there aren’t any chemicals or harsh additives being put in. I also always feel so align and so good about pouring my time, love, and energy into my homemade goods! there are so many additives and sweeteners and preservatives now a days, that I just wish we could stop and get back to our grounding roots, which is why I try harder each and every day to make most of my meals. It isn’t as time consuming as you think, ONCE YOU GET THE HANG OF IT!

So here we go…… Almond milk!! Unsweetened without refined sugars, lightly flavored with vanilla, and VIOLA!! It is easy and it will last a few days fresh and honestly, thats all it would last in the household anyways… I mean if you like smoothies, lattes, and oatmeal…

Almond Milk (Vanilla)

-4 Cups water

-1 Cup Almonds (soaked for 6-8 hours)

-3 Dates (soaked if possible)

-1 Tablespoon Coconut oil

-1 teaspoon Vanilla
-Pinch os sea salt
Method
-Allow Almonds to soak overnight or for at least 6-8 hours. Place almonds in high speed blender with water and blend on high. For about 2 minutes.
-Strain milk in a mesh nut milk bag. Throw the milk back in the blender with coconut oil, salt, vanilla, and dates, and blend for about a minute.
-Place in an airtight container for up to 5 days in the refrigerator.

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appetizers, entrees

Indian Nachos!!

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Say what??!! Indian inspired nachos. Yes, I said what you read, Indian Inspired nachos!! As some of you may have noticed by now, I WILL do whatever I can for an excuse to make and enjoy nachos! I also like to be different, and I like a challenge. So of course, why not take so many of our favorite dish, nachos, and use different flavors? I recently found this fantastic company Maya Kaimal, who I will be doing a product review in more depth shortly on another post, and I thought, “I am going to use one of their wonderful simmer sauces and flavor some yummy veggies, then throw them onto chickpea chips with vegan cheese!!! Whoo hoo!!

The first year of becoming vegan, I was holding onto some of my favorite meals pretty strong. So you can bet that Plant based nachos, caesar salad, pizza, burgers, and mac & cheese were constantly in the mix. Of course, all of these things are still highly processed. So once I got use to being plant based and I felt more knowledgable, I felt more comfortable to branch out and try less processed meals. I started using more whole foods and beans or lentils to substitute for “meat.” Beans and mushrooms have a meaty like texture, or at least the firmness some of us crave in a meal. I find when it looks and feels similar with colors & texture and it has a great seasoning and flavor, it makes it easier to be satisfied with meals we are use to eating.

I took some vegetables that I am use to eating with Indian food, like cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, and garbanzos and sautéed them with Maya Kaimal’s Simmer Sauce! It is so easy because the flavor is already all there in the sauce, SO DELICIOUS! All you have to do is chop the vegetables, add the simmer sauce, cook, and then plate over the chips and cheese. It is just a fun spin on your usual Indian dish with just rice or potatoes.

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Indian Nachos

Ingredients:

-1/2 Medium Onion

– 2 Cloves Garlic

-1 Tablespoon Coconut oil

-1/2 Cauliflower Head

-1/2 Broccoli

-1/2 Bell Pepper

-1 Yellow Zucchini

-1 Can Garbanzo beans

-1 Jar of Maya Kaimal’s Madras Curry Simmer Sauce (or if you find another flavor of their many flavors, use that)

-Shredded Mozzerella (Or any other dairy free cheese you like)

-1 Bag of chickpea chips

Method:

-Chop all the veggies in smaller portions so they fall over the chips better. Start to sauté the Onions until translucent (about 3-5 minutes on medium heat). Then add the garlic to the onions and sauté for 2 more minutes. Add the broccoli and cauliflower and sauté for another 8 minutes.

-Add Zucchini, Simmer sauce,  bell pepper, beans and sauté for another 10 minutes.

-While the vegetables and sauce are simmering, in between stirring every 2 minutes, start plating them chips. Get a nice pile of chips and either sprinkle the cheese on top of the chips, so that when you put the hot topping on it melts, or just add it to the mix of vegetables. Either way is fine and up to you. Own it! Enjoy it. Be proud you made something new and fun!

Love, Always, Stephie <3

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appetizers

Coleslaw

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With the Fourth of July coming up, I thought it would be appropriate to post a healthy recipe of Coleslaw. It is pretty straight forward. Coleslaw is great alone, with your BBQ items, on sandwiches, and even a topper on some yummy tacos. Traditionally coleslaw uses mayo and sometimes buttercream as well. This is still a creamy version but it leaves out the cholesterol and other unhealthy features. Instead of using sugar, I used date Syrup! Dates are full of antioxidants, they’re  less sugar than honey, they’re vegan, gluten free, and rich in potassium and minerals. I really enjoy D’vash brand

I recently made some pulled jackfruit sandwiches and I added the coleslaw on top. It added a nice, light, creaminess to the sandwiches and just all around flavor. Let me know when you try this and how you like it, I am interested to know what you use it on or eat it with. -Happy eating!! And Happy Fourth Loves!!

-XoXo, Stephie

 

ColeSlaw

-14 Oz Package of Cabbage

-1 Carrot Shredded

– 1/2 C. Vegan Mayo

– 1 Tablespoon Date Syrup (d’vash)

– 1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice

– 1 Tablespoon White Wine Vinegar

– 1/4 teaspoon Salt

– 1/2 teaspoon Black Pepper

Method:

Combine all ingredients in a bowl, except the cabbage. Once you’ve made a dressing, add the cabbage and toss well, about 2-5 minutes. Then set aside and let marinate in the fridge for at least 3-4 hours, OR BETTER YET, overnight!