Roasted Brussel Sprout, Beet, and Carrot Quinoa Salad

A big and healthy salad that’s PACKED with flavor and nutrition. This week I’m aiming to eat better, my body hasn’t been too thrilled with my latest food choices consisting of take-out… So here’s to a healthy week!

This was a spur of the moment recipe, all I knew was I wanted to have beets (the ones from Trader Joe’s oh my goodness), roasted carrots (colorful!), and roasted brussel sprouts… what better way to get that all together than over arugula and quinoa. I wish I had a few more ingredients, like clementines and balsamic glaze, but I made do.

IMG_3835

The dressing I used was a refrigerated green goddess dressing from Trader Joe’s, I thought it went pretty well with the salad, but another option I’m going to try out is balsamic glaze and freshly squeezed lemon juice.

IMG_3839

 

Ingredients

  • 6 carrots, peeled and sliced into ovals (instead of chopping straight down, cut at angle)
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • garlic powder to taste
  • 1 lb of brussel sprouts, stems cut and halved
  • 8 oz package of baby beets (from Trader Joe’s) OR 3-4 cooked beets, cut into 1/4 inch slices
  • 1 cup of uncooked quinoa
  • package of arugula
  • handful of walnut pieces (per serving)
  • 1 clementine, peeled and seperated (per serving)

optional choices for dressings

  • green goddess dressing from trader joes

OR

  • balsamic glaze
  • freshly squeezed lemon juice

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Line a baking sheet with tinfoil or parchment paper, and place your carrots. Drizzle with one tsp of olive oil, saving the other tsp for the brussel sprouts, and give the carrots a good mix. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, and a hefty dash of garlic powder. Place in the oven for 20 minutes, giving them a little shuffle half way through.
  3. While the carrots are in, line another baking sheet and place your brussel sprouts on with the other tsp of olive oil and mix. Then, make sure all brussel sprouts are face down, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and garlic powder. Make sure the lower rack isn’t on the bottom and when the carrots have 15 minutes left you can place these in there.
  4. While those cook, get your quinoa ready, and cook according to package.
  5. Remove the carrots and set aside in a bowl, they can cool while the brussel sprouts continue to cook for another 10 minutes after flipping cut-side up.
  6. Once those are done, and hopefully the quinoa is ready, you’ll place 1/3-1/2 cup of quinoa down, followed by a cup of arugula, and topped with brussel sprouts, carrots, and beets. I used about 1/2-3/4 cups of each. Top with a handful of walnuts, the clementine pieces, and your dressing of choice. It doesn’t need a lot!
  7. Enjoy.

Hearty Vegan Chili

Been slacking on staying consistent but I’m back and better! I’ve been so busy traveling, I went to Michigan and San Fran, it was so much fun, but I’m coming in hot with a killer new recipe. It has a special ingredient thanks to Healthy Midwestern Girl, I added and it made it one of my new favorite chili recipes… It gives it the perfect chili look and consistency that I’ve been missing as a vegan.

 

This recipe doesn’t take that long to throw together, you basically are going to saute the veggies and then bring everything to a boil, and bam! It’s chili time. I like to eat mine with chips or cornbread… I’ll make sure I get a post for that recipe soon.

I started off sauteing the onion and garlic for a couple of minutes, adding the bell pepper, and jalapenos if you like the extra spice! Followed by the diced tomatoes and giving it all a stir. I let it start to simmer before throwing in the secret ingredient…

Mushrooms!! Throw a package of these into your food processor/chopper and voila, you have that thick “meat” crumbly chili consistency that makes for AMAZING chili. You throw that in your pot and mix.

You’ll add all your spices at this point, making any adjustments you want, more spicy/less spicy (cut the cayenne), and two cans of beans — kidney and black beans. For mine, I poured in the black beans with the juice from the can and rinsed and drained the kidney beans. It gives the dish more liquid but doesn’t take in allll the sodium from two cans of beans, which can add up.

Lastly I added liquid smoke, just to add a bit more flavor, it’s totally optional though. But from here you’ll just let it simmer and cook for about 10 minutes, and then you can enjoy!

Ingredients 

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 small red onions OR 1 large red onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1-2 jalapenos, minced (optional)
  • 28 oz can diced tomatoes (or stewed, or crushed)
  • 8 oz package cremini mushrooms
  • 2-3 tbsp chili powder
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 14 oz can black beans, with juices
  • 14 oz can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/4 tsp liquid smoke (optional)

Instructions

  1. Start by heating up the olive oil on medium hot in a large pot. Once heated add your onion and garlic, sauteing for a few minutes, 2-3, until fragrant. Add the bell peppers and jalapeno, cooking for about 5 minutes until everything softens.
  2. Pour in the tomatoes with all the juices and give everything a stir and simmer for about 5 minutes.
  3. While the veggies simmer, throw in your package of mushrooms (rinse first) into your food chopper and process until the mushroom is very fine and crumbly looking. I did this in two separate batches, if you don’t have a food chopper, hand chop until the mushrooms are minced. You’ll transfer this into the pot and continue simmering.
  4. Add in your spices, black beans with juices from the can, and kidney beans rinsed and drained. Finally, add in your liquid smoke, give everything a big stir and let cook for another 5-10 minutes to combine ingredients and spices, stirring occasionally.
  5. Enjoy over cornbread or chips!

Thai Vegan Pizza

Oh myyyy pizza. Love it. Love everything about it. This week I’ve been feeling exhausted from work and needed some carb-filled food to pick me up haha. The only thing with pizza is that you have to make the dough and let it rise. If the dough was pre-made the process of making a pizza wouldn’t take that long, but since I didn’t pre-make it, the whole process took about an hour and a half. I had the time so I guess it didn’t matter.

I’ve never made this kind of pizza and I was pleasantly surprised. It turned out super delicious and I ate more than I’d care to admit.

Ingredients

Pizza dough

  • 1 1/2 c warm water
  • 2 packets (1/4 ounce each) active dry yeast
  • 2 tsps granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp basil
  • 1/4 c olive oil, plus more for drizzling and bowl
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 c all purpose (or whole wheat) flour, plus more for work surface
  • 1 tbsp cornmeal

Veggie Toppings

  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 zucchini, cut in half long ways and sliced into half moons
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 jalapeno, thinly sliced into full circles
  • 1 tomato, sliced
  • 1 green bell pepper, halved and sliced
  • 1 bunch of cilantro, chopped
  • 1/4 -1/2 c Thai red sauce/Thai curry sauce, anything close to this will work
  • spicy peanut sauce
  • sriracha

Instructions

Pizza dough

  1. Pour the water into a large bowl; sprinkle with yeast and let stand until foamy, about five minutes. Whisk in sugar, spices, oil, and salt. Add flour and stir until a sticky dough forms.
  2. Lightly brush the inside of the bowl with olive oil. Place dough inside and drizzle a little olive oil on top. Cover with a plastic wrap and set aside in a warm, draft-free place until dough has doubled in size, about 1 hour. (start with veggie prep at this time)
  3. Turn out onto a lightly floured work surface and gently knead 1 or 2 times, forming into a round.
  4. Divide into two medium sized pizzas, three small pizzas or leave as one large pizza, rolling it out to your desired thickness.
  5. Get a sheet pan and cover the bottom with cornmeal and place pizza(s) on one or multiple sheet pans, in preparation for topping.

Veggie Toppings

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Heat up the olive oil in a medium sized pan, and add your zucchini and onion over medium heat for about five-seven minutes, just to soften them up.
  3. Have the rest of your veggies prepared and ready to top.

Making the Pizza

  1. Optional: brush the edges of your dough with olive oil.
  2. With your dough and toppings ready, you will cover the base with the Thai sauce you chose, about 3/4 in. from the edge cover it generously.
  3. Top it with the zucchini and onions, bell pepper, tomato, jalapeno, and garlic, place in the oven and cook for 11-13 minutes.
  4. Once removed from the oven, you will top with cilantro, peanut sauce, and sriracha if you like the extra spice. Cut it up and enjoy it hot!

Buffalo Cauliflower “Wings”

I think I have a cauliflower addiction. I eat so much of it, but it’s just so versatile! This is a new recipe I got from mealz.com and let me tell you, sooooo good. I ate way too much. I always get scared using batter because sometimes I really mess those recipes up, but this one was really simple and turned out great.

This recipe does take some time to put together, so planning ahead and making sure you have about an hour to put it together and then cook is important! Trust me though, it’s so worth it.

IMG_2888

Ingredients

Cauliflower wings

  • 1 large cauliflower head
  • 1.5 c almond/soy milk
  • 1 c flour
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tbsp olive oil/grapeseed oil
  • 3/4 c vegan buffalo sauce

Vegan Buffalo Sauce

  • 3/4 c hot sauce
  • 2 tbsp olive oil/grapeseed oil
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Cut cauliflower into big bite-size florets (see more pics on my blog). Set aside.
  2. Mix 1 cup flour, 1.5 cups milk (2% dairy milk or unsweetened non-dairy milk), 1 teaspoon each salt and garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon each paprika and pepper, and 1 tablespoon coconut oil.
  3. Dip florets into batter, gently shake off excess. Place on baking sheet in a single layer with as much space between florets as possible.
  4. Bake at 450 degrees for 18-20 minutes. Gently flip. Cook for another 12-15 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, make the buffalo sauce (if using). Combine 2 tablespoons coconut oil, 3/4 cup hot sauce and 1/4 tsp garlic powder in a small sauce pan. Heat over low heat for 3-5 minutes.
  6. When cauliflower is finished, allow to cool slightly then add to a mixing bowl. Pour sauce (in this case buffalo) over the “wings” and gently toss to coat. Bake for another 10 minutes.

I hope you enjoy this one as much as I did!

The Most Flavorful Cauliflower Tacos

I probably cook this recipe three times a month, I am borderline obsessed. These tacos are so flavorful, filling, and a hit with any of the lucky people I’ve cooked them for. (;

Since this weekend was a holiday, I figured why not cook for the house!

cauli tacos post pic2

To make it a quicker recipe to put together, when you’re battering your tacos, feel free to throw the coconut milk mixture in one bag, and the dry ingredients in another ziploc bag. Dump your florets into the wet mixture, covering well, and then move from there to the dry bag and give it a good shake to coat everything. I found this to shorten the prep time for the cauli’s by about 10-15 minutes.

cauli tacos post pic1

These tacos are always the talk of the table, I recommend wowing some non-vegans with these baby’s and they will let you know vegan food “is actually really good!” I love hearing it haha because any food can be good! Labels or no labels.

cauli tacos post pic3

The coleslaw is super simple, it’s only three ingredients and adds a nice freshness to the taco. And the sauce is my favorite part, I’m probably too generous on portion sizes but you know, how can I help myself when it’s so bomb?! I finally top it with sriracha, and barely make it to my seat before devouring.

Ingredients

For the cauliflower

  • 1 head of cauliflower, florets
  • 1 14oz can of coconut milk
  • 1 lime
    Dry ingredients
  • 1/2 – 3/4 c cornmeal*
  • 1/2-3/4 c breadcrumbs* (I used panko)
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne powder
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/8 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • tortillas

For the coleslaw

  • 1/2 head of cabbage, finely shredded
  • 2 large carrots, finely shredded
  • 1 lime
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup

For the sriracha sauce

  • 1/4 c vegan mayonaise
  • 1-2 tbsp sriracha
  • 1 lime

Optional

  • Sriracha
  • Fresh lime

Instructions

  1. Set your oven to 375 degrees, and line a baking sheet with parchment or tinfoil. If you have the time, and can hand dip each cauliflower, you will get two medium/large bowls out. If you are on a time crunch, two large ziploc bags will be needed.
  2. In one of the bowls/ziploc you will pour the can (make sure to shake well) of coconut milk and juice of one lime, mixing well. In the other bowl/ziploc you will add all of the dry ingredients and mix well.
  3. With your florets, you will generously coat each one in the coconut milk bowl or ziploc (for the bowl you can usually do a couple at a time, and for the ziploc dumb all of the florets in and shake the bag) and then transfer to the dry ingredient bowl or bag (same with the wet bowl, you will only coat a couple at a time, and for the ziploc, transfer only the cauliflower florets, leaving as much excess coconut milk behind as you can) and completely coat. The coated florets will be placed on the baking sheet and placed in the over for 12-15 minutes.
  4. While the cauliflower is cooking, you’ll get your coleslaw and sauce together, in a medium sized bowl, put all ingredients together and stir, place in the fridge until the cauliflower is ready.
  5. For the sauce, you will place all ingredients in a small bowl, mixing well and placing in the fridge until the cauliflower is ready.
  6. When the cauliflower is done, turn each floret, and place back in the oven for another 12-15 minutes.
  7. Once the cauliflower is ready, heat up your tortillas, and build to your liking!

*Depends on how big your cauliflower is, I usually use more, I just like to make sure I have enough to properly cover the florets!

Get ready to wow yourself or anyone who tries these, they are so good, I wish I didn’t eat them all already!

Vegan Nachos

Everybody loves nachos, topped a mile high, and full of flavor. Here’s a good vegan version that’s perfect for group events, or solo dolo, either way, they’re going to taste bomb af.

nacho photo enhanced

I used a vegan queso recipe from thug kitchen, I started with this first.

Then I threw together my guac, pan-fried the corn to throw in the guac, and finally heated up the “meat” crumbles. The salsa I had store bought, any of you over-achievers can take it a step further and make that sh*t at home for extra tastiness… I, on the other hand, decided to go the lazy route.

When everything was prepped I got a large plate, threw some bomb chips from Aldi on there, and piled high. My order was salsa, guac, queso, meat crumbles, and a lil bit more salsa, the order doesn’t matter so put it together however you want!

Ingredients

Butternut squash queso(ish) dip

1 ½ cups butternut squash puree*

½ cup diced yellow onion

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin

1 teaspoon chili powder

1 teaspoon smoked paprika

3 tablespoons olive oil

½ cup vegetable broth or water

1 cup diced tomatoes with their juices**

¼ cup nutritional yeast

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1-2 jalapenos, minced

1 tablespoon lime juice

½ teaspoon salt

Guacamole

2 avocados

salt to taste

1 lime, juiced

1/2 tomato, diced

1/2 c corn

1 tsp oil

1/4 onion, diced

1/4 c cilantro, chopped

1/4 tsp paprika

1/4 tsp chili powder

Other ingredients

1 bag of your favorite tortilla chips

1 container of your favorite salsa, or homemade

1 package of Lightlife smart ground meatless crumbles or another meatless alternative of choice

Optional toppings

chopped cilantro

sliced jalapenos

black beans

Butternut Squash Instructions 

  1. Throw the butternut squash puree and onion in a blender and run until it looks smooth. In a small bowl, mix together the flour, cumin, chili powder, and smoked paprika and set it aside.
  2. Grab a medium-sized soup pot and warm the olive oil over medium heat. Throw in the flour and spice mixture and keep stirring until it starts to thicken up and smell kinda toasty. You’ll be making a roux. Grab a small whisk and slowly add the vegetable broth while you whisk. It will start to look like little lumps of playdough.  Add the diced tomatoes and all their juices and keep stirring, it should be a lot smoother looking now with the only chunks being those tasty as hell tomatoes.
  3. Now pour in the butternut squash mix, the nutritional yeast, garlic, jalapenos, lime juice, and salt. Stir well so there aren’t any chunks, and turn down the heat to low. Let everything simmer together for 3-5 minutes so that the flavors get all mixed up and the sauce thickens. Serve warm and right away.

* Yeah you can use a can but it’s easy to make. Skin and chop up a butternut squash into chunks about the size of a dime until you get about 3 cups. Throw it in a pot with a steamer basket and some water, cover, and simmer for about 15 minutes until the squash is tender. Throw it in a blender or food processor and boom, puree.

** Canned is cool here.

Makes 2 ½ cups total, enough for 6 hungry motherfuckers

Recipe used from the Thug Kitchen page.

Guacamole Instructions

  1. Get a small/medium bowl, halve the avocados, remove the pit, and place in your bowl. Mash with a fork to reach your desired guac consistency, I get mine to be pretty smooth.
  2. Add in the salt, lime juice, and tomato, mix well.
  3. In a small frying pan, heat your olive oil and cook up the corn for about 3 minutes or until the kernels are starting to brown and pop. Remove and place in your guac bowl, mixing well. Save the pan if you’re going to heat up “meat” crumbles or some faux alternative meat topping.
  4. Add the onion, cilantro and spices, giving it a final mix, taste and see if you’re missing any spices or salt and adjust accordingly.

Meat crumbles

  1. In the same pan you pan-fried the corn, heat up the crumbles here for about 5 minutes or until you can hear it cooking and steaming. Remove from heat and get ready to scoop from the pan when you’re prepping the nachos.

Putting it together

  1. Grab a big plate, or small, your choice, and throw on your chips. From there top with all the toppings, your queso, the guacamole, the meat crumbles, and salsa. You can also top with freshly chopped cilantro, black beans and sliced jalapenos.
  2. Enjoy tf out of it!!!

I personally made myself a fat serving of this and didn’t share… I know, I’m a monster. But, this could potentially serve 6 or more, just throw it on a huge plate and enjoy during a game or any gathering, it’s a guaranteed hit! Who doesn’t love nachos?!

 

 

Banana, Blueberry & Spinach Smoothie

This recipe is super simple and quick. It’s sooo good, all my friends love it so why not share the bomb-ness… hopefully you like peanut butter, if not you can omit it and it’ll still taste great, just a slightly different taste.

IMG_2771

Ingredients

  • 1 c blueberries, frozen
  • 1 c spinach
  • 1/2 c almond milk
  • 1 banana, frozen
  • 1 tbsp ground flax seeds
  • 1 tbsp peanut butter

*if the blueberries and banana aren’t frozen, just add a half cup of ice

Instructions

  1. Combine all ingredients and blend until smooth.
Nutrition Facts
Servings 1.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 369
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 14 g 22 %
Saturated Fat 2 g 10 %
Monounsaturated Fat 1 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 3 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 0 mg 0 %
Sodium 115 mg 5 %
Potassium 910 mg 26 %
Total Carbohydrate 56 g 19 %
Dietary Fiber 11 g 45 %
Sugars 31 g
Protein 12 g 24 %
Vitamin A 66 %
Vitamin C 55 %
Calcium 21 %
Iron 17 %
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

I hope you enjoy this one as much as I do, after a hard day at the gym you can throw in some protein powder also!