Red Quinoa Salad with Spiced Roasted Squash, Black Beans, Maple Toasted Pepitas and a Chipotle Dressing

This post is half recipe, half product review. I must admit, I was never a fan of mayo or miracle whip growing up. However, after transitioning to a plant based diet, I fell in love with Vegenaise (a vegan version of miracle whip). Recently a new company, Just Mayo, released a vegan mayo. We brought some into the deli and I played around with it, but wasn’t in love with it. Two new products from Just Mayo happened to catch my eye – Chipotle and Garlic infused. I am a fan of spice, so I gave the Chipotle a try. Turns out, it’s pretty great. I had it on a veggie sandwich yesterday and today I made a fabulous quinoa salad. The flavored mayos are definitely versatile and can be utilized in different ways. It would be fun making a pasta salad or mashed chickpea (faux chicken) salad as well!!

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Ingredients

– 1/2 kabocha squash, seeded, peeled and diced
– Arizona spice mix from Penzey’s
– 2 c cooked quinoa
– 1 c cooked black beans
– a handful of maple toasted pepitas (recipe follows)
– 2 Tbls Maple Syrup
– 1 Tbls melted coconut oil
– Cayenne
– Cinnamon
– salt
– olive oil
– Just Mayo Chipotle style
– Apple cider vinegar

1. First, preheat the oven to 400F. Coat the squash in olive oil and toss with Arizona spice mix and salt. Roast until soft
2. Next, make the dressing by mixing together Just Mayo chipotle, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, chipotle, olive oil and salt
3. For the pepitas, I only use a handful – but I make a large batch because they’re fun to snack on and always disappear quickly. I toss 2 c of raw pepitas with maple syrup, olive oil, cayenne, cinnamon and salt. I roast at 400F for a few minutes then set outside to cool
4. Assemble the salad by adding quinoa, beans, squash, pepitas and dressing. Salt and pepper to taste

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Fajita Salad

Some days we just need a go-to meal and this is one of those meals. If I ever open a restaurant, my fajita salad will definitely go on the menu. It’s full of flavor and incredibly satisfying. It was so good, I really didn’t even need a dressing!

Ingredients

  • 1/2 red pepper, sliced
  • 1/2 green pepper, sliced
  • 1/2 yellow onion, sliced
  • chili seasoning (about 1-2 tsps)
  • oil (I used a chipotle infused oil)
  • black beans, about 1/3 c
  • avocado, about 1/3 sliced
  • brown rice, about 1/3 c cooked
  • lettuce
  • balsamic vinegar (I used garlic infused)
  • Parma raw vegan cheese (chipotle cayenne)

First, saute the peppers and onion in a little oil. As they become tender, sprinkle the chili powder in. Once soft, remove from heat.

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Now, you’re ready for plating! Put down some lettuce, then add the rice, corn, fajita veggies, black beans and avocado. Top with some garlic infused balsamic vinegar and cayenne chipotle parma. Enjoy!!

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Tofu, Black Bean, and Roasted Corn Tacos

I’ve chosen to initiate a new food club on the snowiest day of 2013. Oh well. Adds to the excitement, I suppose. The dish I made has been in my queue forever. It couldn’t be easier. Seriously, a 4 year-old could make this. I found the recipe on Whole Foods website. I modified a few things. Enjoy!

Tofu, Black Bean, and Roasted Corn Tacos

  • 1 package extra-firm tofu, drained
  • 1/2  tsp chili powder (I used Penzey’s Arizona spice, somehow I didn’t have a drop of chili powder on hand, whoops)
  • 1/2  tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2  tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2  tsp ground coriander
  • 1/2  tsp salt
  • Enough lime juice to make a paste, about 1-2 tsps
  • olive oil
  • 3  cloves garlic, chopped
  • 3  green onions, hopped
  • 1  can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 12  corn tortillas, warmed

Directions

  1. Combine spices and lime juice, crumble in tofu, use your hands to get the spice slurry all over the tofu. The longer you can let it marinate, the better
  2. Saute the garlic and most of the green onion until fragrant

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3.  Add the tofu mixture. Cook for about 10 minutes

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4.  Add the frozen fire roasted corn to the heating tofu mixture. Cook for several minutes. Then add the black beans and remaining green onion. Cook until there is no liquid left in the pan (which accumulates from tofu/marinade/frozen corn/rinsed beans)

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5.  Serve over tacos and top with whatever you desire!

 

 

Vegan Enchilada Casserole

Coming from Minnesota, it’s really hard calling a dish a casserole. Normally we would refer to a dish such as this as a hot dish. However, I wanted to make it more recognizable. After much searching, I found a perfect recipe. It was delicious and between my roommates and I, we have plenty of leftovers!

Overall, I loved this dish for many reasons: simplicity, relatively healthy, and full of flavor. Definitely try this one out.

Vegan Tofu Enchilada Casserole by Epicurious

  • 1 package extra firm tofu
  • 1/4 c of  nutritional yeast
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1 tsp of  salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp hot sauce
  • 1/2 c of diced green chiles
  •  1 Tbls olive oil
  • 1 red bell pepper diced
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 1 tsp of cumin
  • 2 big bunches of spinach, chopped
  • 1 can of black beans rinsed and drained
  • 1 c of corn (frozen)
  • 1 32  oz can of red enchilada sauce
  • 16 small corn tortillas
  • Daiya cheddar cheese shreds
  1. Press tofu to let excess water out. Crumble tofu and mix in nutritional yeast, garlic, green chiles, salt and hot sauce into a bowl and set aside
  2. Saute onion and red pepper in oil. When soft, add in cumin and spinach. Then add corn and beans

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3. In a separate pan, heat up the tofu mixture

4. Preheat oven to 375 F. In a 13 x 9 pan, spray with cooking spray. Pour 1/2-3/4 c enchilada sauce on bottom. Layer with tortillas with veggie mix, tofu mix, and Daiya cheese. Cover with tortillas and repeat. End with a layer of tortillas and cheese. Empty remaining enchilada sauce (I had about 1/4 c left over that I did not use)

veggie mix

veggie mix

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veggie and tofu, topped with Daiya

Final layer, ready for the oven!

Final layer, ready for the oven!

Final product

Final product