Quick Fiesta Salad and Homemade Ice Cream for Dessert


Had this salad ready in about 15 minutes. First, I put some rice in the rice cooker. Then I made the guacamole (2 avocados mashed with 1/2 jar of Pepper Pete’s salsa). At this point, I started frying a black bean burger over medium heat. Next I shredded a carrot and chopped 4 leaves of romaine. After a flip of the burger and a check of the rice, it was ready to plate. I sprinkled it all with vegan cayenne Parma! and a smoky tomato vinaigrette.

And for dessert, I blended 1/2 frozen banana with about 1/2 c vanilla soy yogurt, 1/2 c soy milk and 2 tsps powdered peanut butter, then froze for an hour. Excuse my laziness of Instagram quality photos.



Spicy Thai Noodles with Tofu

After a day full of two jobs, multiple meetings, homework and spin class; needless to say I was in a hurry to eat tonight! I made a quick Thai noodle dish and the first step was putting an easy marinade together before leaving for the gym. A combination of garlic cloves, Bragg’s aminos, chinese ginger, rice vinegar, agave, and some water (it was really salty!).

Once I returned home I got a pot of water boiling, threw a bag of frozen veggies in a pan, and heated a skillet for the tofu. After the veggies thawed, I added a spicy Thai seasoning that my aunt got me from the Olive Branch Oil & Spice in White Bear; then I poured in a can of light coconut milk along with a teaspoon of brown rice miso. As that simmered, I browned my tofu. Then cooked a batch of wheat soba noodles. It was ready in under 30 minutes and I have to meals for the rest of the week!

step one: noodles

step one: noodles

step two: tofu

step two: tofu

step three: veggies

step three: veggies

step four:...eat!

step four:…eat!

Mixed Berry Surprise


Oh how I love smoothies. Unfortunately this love came to a screeching halt this winter. It’s been ungodly cold in Minnesota and the thought of eating a frozen treat makes my goosebumps grow goosebumps. However, I had the time and craving for one, so here it is!

Mixed Berry Surprise

  • a handful of frozen mixed berries, about 1/2 c
  • 1/2 c non-dairy yogurt (I used vanilla)
  • 3/4 c – 1 c non-dairy milk (I used almond)
  • 2 tsp chia seeds
  • 2 tsp Magma Powder

Blend well. Add milk as needed. (*note, I made this by just throwing things into my blender. The only thing I actually measured was the magma powder…) You really can’t go wrong with smoothies.

Baked Shells and Cheese

Tonight was a mac and cheese night. Rather than hitting up my go-to box brand, I made a batch from scratch. I made it on the fly, not following a recipe or measuring in exactness, but the details below are as close as it’ll get. Definitely give it a taste and see what you think. I for one was not disappointed.

Baked Shells and Cheese

  • 8 oz medium-sized shells
  • 1/2 block of Daiya cheddar cheese
  • 1 c plain, unsweetened non-dairy milk
  • 2 tsp butter
  • 1 Tbls nutritional yeast
  • dash of salt and pepper
  • 1/4 c of bread crumbs
  1. Cook shells according to package
  2. Make sauce by cubing the cheese and adding it to a pot along with the milk and butter. Bring to a simmer
  3. Once cheese is melting, add in nutritional yeast, salt and pepper. When  you see a melded consistency, add to the noodles, stir
  4. Now you can leave it here, or you can put the noodles in a greased 8 x 8 pan, sprinkle with bread crumbs and bake at 325F for about 15 minutes

This can serve one, if you are insanely hungry. I opted to split it up and served it with healthy grilled asparagus. Mmmm. Now, go eat!


Veggie Chickpea Soup

A good soup never fails to warm your soul. And soups are one of the easiest meals to throw together without following a recipe. When soup is on my mind, I first decide which type of base I want: brothy or creamy. Then I decide whether or not to make it acidic by adding tomatoes. Next comes the flavor profile (spices and herbs): cumin, curry, chili, chipotle, coriander, nutmeg, cinnamon, thyme, oregano, rosemary, broth powder, dill, turmeric, and so on. Finally texture: blended or chunky.

The veggie chickpea soup I made today is inexpensive, simple and delicious. It’s brothy, non-acidic, and chunky. I kept the spice/herb profile to a minimum, just nutritional yeast and black pepper. I wanted the flavors of the veggies and stock to be the base of this soup. I hope you enjoy it!

Veggie Chickpea Soup

  • 1/2 large onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3-4 carrots, chopped
  • 1 Tbls nutritional yeast
  • 12 oz fresh spinach
  • 1 can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 3/4 c rice (I used short grain brown and pink)
  • 1 container of veggie broth and 1 c water
  1. Saute the onion and garlic in water or oil until soft and fragrant
  2. Add the carrots and spinach (*note, I’d recommend adding the spinach at the end, it didn’t hold up well during the simmering process)
  3. Cook for 5 minutes
  4. Add remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat. Simmer for 30 minutes or until the rice is cooked
  5. Season to taste


200th Blog: Chili with Black-Eyed Peas

Black-eyed peas are a neat little legume, and yet I hardly cook with them. These spotted treasures get a lot of hype around New Years as some believe they bring good luck. I thought this luck would be fitting for my 200th blog 🙂

They are loaded with nutrients such as calcium, folate, protein, fiber and vitamin A. I concocted a recipe that can be used all year round and kept it simple by using them for a satisfying chili. Next time you’re at the store, grab some dry or canned black-eyed peas to have on hand for this great meal. You won’t be disappointed.

Chili with Black-Eyed Peas

  • 1 c dry black-eyed peas, soaked in water overnight
  • 1/2 large onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp chipotle seasoning
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 bag of meatless crumbles
  • 1 28 oz can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 c veggie broth, or water
  1. Saute onion and garlic in a little oil or water
  2. Once soft, add seasonings and crumbles. Cook for about 5 minutes or until crumbles are well thawed
  3. Add beans, tomatoes and stock, bring to a boil, cover and simmer for at least an hour or until the beans are cooked
  4. Salt and pepper to taste


Soup and Brussels

Soup and salad is so boring. So, to mix it up, I did soup and brussels for dinner. The soup was pre-made and unfortunately much too sweet for me. I used Pacific brand Butternut Squash soup. I doctored it up the first night with roasted squash and rice, and it was good. But having it just plain I found to be barely edible. Maybe my taste buds are going through a phase.

The brussels sprouts were just dandy. I coated them in oil, pepper, garlic salt and nutritional yeast; and roasted at 450 F until tender and crisp.

To complete the meal, I had a slice of bread with a white bean spread.


Grilled Asparagus and Chik’n Salad


With all of the heavy winter foods, my body was craving something on the lighter side. I’ve been in the mood for asparagus so I grabbed some frozen grilled asparagus from Trader Joe’s last week. I sautéed chik’n strips along with the asparagus and cut up the romaine. The dressing I used was amazing. Trader Joe’s makes a hummus dressing that’s vegan and healthy; win-win! You can find it in the refrigerator section. I totally recommend you try it out.

Chili Verde

Not only did I make a homemade chili tonight, but I made a homemade salsa verde to go with it. Yeah, that’s right. I’ve never made salsa verde before, mostly because I was super intimidated by tomatillos. Fear no longer, I conquered the leafy, green tomato. The recipe came from the recent Vegetarian Times and I botched it a little. This is my spin on chili verde!

Salsa Verde

  • 6 larger tomatillos, outer skins removed
  • 1 jalapeno, stem removed
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • cumin and salt to taste
  1. Bring veggies to a boil and simmer for about 20 minutes or until the veggies start to split open
  2. Use a slotted spoon and transfer to a food processor (reserve some of the stock)
  3. Blend until everything is combined, add water for desired texture. Complete with your desired amount of salt and cumin




  • 1 c green onion, chopped
  • 1 c fire roasted corn
  • 1 can of black beans (original recipe called for 2 cans, whoops!)
  • salsa verde (above, or any 16 oz jar)
  • cumin and salt to taste
  1. Saute green onion in a little bit of the left over tomatillo stock (you can also use oil or water)
  2. When soft, add the corn, beans and salsa. Bring to a boil and simmer for 20 minutes
  3. Season to your liking

pre verde