Mexi-Flare Mini Pizza

pizza2Pizza is such a versatile food & definitely not something you need to give up when you go vegan! I really enjoy making different plant based pizzas, and it’s amazing how great they taste even without non-dairy cheese! This one is loaded with refried beans, tomatoes, zucchini, and fresh peas – much of which came from my local CSA share****link What’s not to love?

*Please note the nutrition facts may change based on the crust you use.

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Mexi-Flare Mini Pizza

Yield: 3 servings (1/3 pizza each)

Ingredients:

  • 1 pre-made 9” vegan pizza crust
  • ½ cup refried beans
  • 1.5 cup chopped zucchini
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • ½ cup fresh shelled peas

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven as directed on pizza crust package – if you are using raw dough, you may need to pre-bake the dough for a while before adding toppings.
  2. Spread refried beans thickly over entire crust
  3. Sprinkle zucchini, tomatoes, and peas over bean “sauce”
  4. Bake as directed on pizza crust package, or until crust begins to brown and veggies are soft.

I enjoyed mine with a few dashes of hot sauce on top; yum! Let me know what you think of the recipe in the comments below! Positive or negative, your feedback is always appreciated!

One Pan Tex-Mex Pasta

IMG_0906If you have a computer & love to cook, Pinterest needs to be on your radar. There are so many good recipes to find there! This one is an update from: http://bakerbynature.com/skinny-one-pan-veggie-fajita-pasta/ . The changes I made were simply taking out the greek yogurt & swapping some ingredients for what I had on hand. I always love recipes like this that use just one pan because it means less cleanup!

As always I encourage you to play around with spices & veggies in this dish. Be sure to comment below & let me know how it turns out for you!

If you’re a plant-based eater, feel free to add a can of your favorite beans (black would work well) to this recipe for some added protein.

This recipe yields about 8 servings, so if you’re cooking for a smaller group, consider halving it. The nutritional facts are based on the ingredients listed here – without any beans added in.

One Pan Tex-Mex Pasta

Ingredients: IMG_0905_2

  • 16 ounces linguine
  • (1) 10 oz can diced tomatoes (I used Rotel diced tomatoes & green chiles)
  • (1) 8 oz container vegetable stock
  • (1) 15 oz can of corn
  • 2 Tbsp. hot sauce
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 Tbsp. garlic powder
  • 1 Tbsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp. ground oregano
  • 2 sprigs cilantro, plus extra for garnish
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • Freshly ground pepper & salt, to taste
  • 2 1/2 cups water

Directions:NL_texmexpasta

  1. In a VERY large pot or skillet, combine linguini, tomatoes, stock, hot sauce, onion, garlic, cilantro, oil, salt, cumin, chili powder, oregano, pepper, and water. Bring to a boil over high heat.
  2. Boil mixture, stirring and turning pasta frequently, until pasta is cooked and the sauce has nearly evaporated, about 11 minutes. (It may look like a lot of sauce when you remove the pan from heat, but it will soak into the pasta). Remove cilantro sprigs if visible.
  3. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Garnish with chopped cilantro & serve immediately.

Creamed Curried Kale & Chickpeas

IMG_0960Yet again, we have another Pinterest find! Original post – http://blog.fatfreevegan.com/2014/03/creamy-curried-kale-and-chickpeas.html . I am a huge, huge fan of Indian food & especially anything curried. I had the opportunity to travel to India for three weeks during the winter of my sophomore/junior year at St. Ben’s. My time there really opened my eyes to a whole new world of flavors & spices; my cooking has not been the same since!

This recipe calls for 8 cups of chopped kale with the stems removed, but I really hate just throwing out the stems. I decided to include them in my curry & mine still turned out great. The only advice I’d give is that you make sure your kale stems are thoroughly cooked & tender before blending the mixture in a food processor. Otherwise your curry may end up a bit lumpy & not as creamy.

I replaced a few of the spices with things I’d had on hand, so feel free to play around with them basedNL_chickpeacurrykale on the contents of your spice cabinet. Just continue to taste as you go & you’ll find flavors that are right for you. I also halved the amount of chickpeas because it seemed that one can was plenty for this size recipe.

This makes a large batch, so if you’re only cooking for yourself or two, consider halving it or using the leftovers in creative ways! It’s delicious over rice or served with naan. I also used our leftovers in a vegan quesadilla & on vegan pizza – sooooooo good. This recipe yield about 6 servings. Let me know if you try it out!

Creamed Curried Kale & Chickpeas

Ingredients:

  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 tsp. powdered ginger
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1 Tbsp. curry powder
  • 1 tsp. turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp. chili powder
  • 8 cups chopped kale (stems included!), packed
  • 1/2 cup low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk
  • 1/4 cup raw cashews
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast, optional
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 15-ounce cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed well
  • salt to taste

Directions:

  1. Heat a large, non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook until softened and beginning to brown, 4-5 minutes, adding water by the tablespoon if needed to prevent sticking.
  2. Add the garlic, ginger, and cumin –  cook for 1 minute. Add the remaining spices and cook for another minute, stirring constantly to prevent burning.
  3. Reduce heat to medium. Stir in the kale and vegetable broth. Cover and cook until the kale is bright green and tender, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. While the kale is cooking, put the milk, cashews, nutritional yeast, and tomato paste in the blender/food processor and puree until smooth. When the kale is done, add it to the blender/processor and blend until smooth.
  5. Transfer blended mixture back to the skillet and bring to a simmer.
  6. Check seasonings and add more to taste. Stir in chickpeas and continue simmering about 10 minutes.
  7. Add salt to taste

Spicy Ginger Pasta w/ Veggies

Before
Before

This is a great recipe for when you have leftover pasta & want to kick it up a notch. I have recently been on a mei fun kick & order it whenever we get Chinese takeout. But as is common with takeout, I end up with a TON of leftovers & get sick of eating the same thing over & over again. So here is my self-made recipe to bring boring noodles back to a delicious entree.

This recipe makes about (5) one-cup servings & is packed with almost all of your recommended daily amount of vitamin A which is great for your vision & immune system!

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Ingredients:

  • 4 cups of leftover cooked pasta
  • 1 Tbsp. oil
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1 cup chopped carrots
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 jalapeno
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp. ground ginger
After!
After!

Directions: 

  1. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat, then add oil
  2. Once oil has heated, add mushrooms, carrots, onion & garlic, cooking 3-4 mins or until onions become translucent
  3. Add in jalapeño, ginger & peas cooking an additional 2-3 minutes
  4. Reduce to medium heat & add pasta and 1/2 cup of water to pan. Simmer for about 4 minutes to infuse pasta with the flavors in the pan.

Be sure to comment & let me know what you think!

Tofu “Egg” Salad

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This recipe came out of one of my very favorite cookbooks: “A Good Cook… Ten Talents: Natural Foods – A Diet from the Garden of Eden” This is a classic vegetarian cookbook- well, actually it’s really a vegan cookbook. I have the 48th edition from 2012, but the original was printed in the late 60s’ before the term “vegan” was even coined. Regardless, it is entirely plant based and very instructive for anyone new to cooking. It is definitely my #1 cookbook recommendation for anyone cooking vegan meals regularly!

I used this salad to top my salad greens, in sandwiches, by itself- you name it! It is a very simple recipe & packs GREAT flavor. If you try it out be sure to leave a comment & let me know how it turned out!

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This recipe makes about four 1/2 cup servings. Without further adieu, here is my version of tofu “egg” salad:

Tofu “Egg” Salad

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb firm tofu
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped celery
  • 2 Tbsp. diced pimento
  • 2 Tbsp. finely chopped red onion
  • 1 Tbsp. nutritional yeast flakes
  • 1/2 tsp. each of salt & onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp. each of garlic powder, turmeric, & celery seed
  • Soy mayonnaise & lemon juice to taste

Directions:

  1. Cut drained tofu into small cubes
  2. In a medium bowl, add celery, pimento, onion, nutritional yeast, salt & onion powder to tofu pieces
  3. Add soy mayonnaise & lemon juice to desired taste
  4. Stick bowl, covered, in refrigerator to blend flavors