Thursday, March 31, 2011

Lentil "Beef" Stew


1 Packet Lipton Beefy Onion Recipe Secrets (yes, this IS vegan!)
1 Can Diced Tomatoes, not drained
1 Can Lentils, not drained
1 Can Butternut Squash or Pumpkin
10 New Potatoes, Diced and Boiled (about 10 min., until tender)
1 cup finely chopped Kale (optional)

1/2 Bag Each (Frozen, Thawed in Microwave):
Mirepoix (Celery, Carrot, Onion)
Baby Lima Beans

1 1/2 cups Water
2-4 TBSP chopped Garlic
1 TBSP Olive Oil
Cornstarch for thickening, if necessary (1 tsp. mixed with a few TBSP cold water)


In a large soup pot heat oil, then add garlic, fry a few minutes
Pour in diced tomatoes, lentils, Lipton packet and butternut squash
Add diced potatoes once cooked
Add Kale, if using
Add in microwaved frozen vegetables, 1 1/2 cups water
Simmer and add salt and pepper to taste

Serve with salad and bread

Sweet Potato Burritos & Roasted Mexican Potatoes

This post is entered in Chez Cayenne's House Favorites: Vegan event.

Yes, it IS a double potato, extra starchy night, but I was craving both so I went with it   :)

And I know the combo of sweet potato and beans seems strange, but it is really actually good!

Sweet Potato Burritos - I cut it in half so you could see the inside bean/sweet potato mixture

Serves 4
(these freeze well in individual Tupperware containers - just microwave to reheat)


2 Sweet Potatoes - Microwave until soft and remove skin, then mash
2 Cans Refried Beans
4 Large Burrito Tortillas
1 Can Tomato Soup


Mix sweet potato mash with refried beans
Spoon mixture evenly between 4 tortillas and fold into burritos
In a large measuring cup or bowl, mix can of tomato soup with salsa (enough to make approx.  3 cups)

Cover the bottom of a 9x13 Pyrex with a light layer of the salsa/soup mixture
Place the 4 burritos in the Pyrex
Cover the burritos with the remaining salsa/soup mixture

Bake at 350 for 20 min., until bubbling
Top with whatever you like: green onions, guacamole or sour cream
Serve on a salad bed and top with dressing (I mix vegan sour cream with taco seasoning)

Mexican Potatoes

Serves 2

2 handfuls Small New Potatoes, quartered
3 TBSP. Butter (I use Earth Balance) melted and mixed with 2 TBSP Taco Seasoning
Bake at 400 for 20 min. in a small Pyrex
Add a handful of sliced white onion
Bake 10 more min.
Top with sour cream or green onions, or both!

Soba Noodle Salad

I had a bag of cole slaw mix and some left over tofu and had to get creative for dinner -


1 bag coleslaw mix

Tofu, cubed and fried with a little oil and seasoned with soy sauce

2 bunches of soba noodles cooked and cooled (found in Asian markets - Japanese buckwheat noodles) or you can use spaghetti

Asian Dressing (I made my own using Trader Joe's Soyaki mixed with some vegan mayo to make it creamy)

Toppings - I used diced clementines, avocado, slivered almonds, crunchy noodles, sesame seeds, chopped green and red onion


Mix coleslaw with the cooled noodles in a big pot or bowl

Add tofu and dressing to coleslaw/noodle mixture and stir

Arrange toppings of choice on top

Serve with dumplings, egg rolls or miso soup

Easy!  :)

Baked Penne - Sneaky Vegetable Recipe

*This is another meal you can make ahead - just make up to the point where you put it in the Pyrex and then refrigerate instead of baking.  You can leave it overnight and bake the next day if serving to company.  Or you can bake all the way and just reheat portions in the microwave if you are just serving for yourself or an informal gathering.

I made up this recipe for dinner tonight - it includes a cup of finely chopped broccoli which would be good for those who have kids who don't like vegetables and are picky, it is so finely chopped it blends into the sauce.  You could also add finely chopped spinach or mushrooms for extra nutrients.

The fresh basil is key to this recipe's flavor!

(As always, my Ninja chopper is my best friend in these recipes and makes prep so much faster and less work)

3-4 cloves garlic - chopped
1/2 white onion - finely chopped
1 red pepper - chopped
2 cans diced tomatoes, with juice
1/2 block of firm tofu pureed in blender with 1/2 cup water to make a white sauce (I have a Vitamix blender I can't live without)
1 large bunch of basil finely chopped
1 c. of broccoli florets pulsed in chopper until finely chopped
1 box of whole wheat pasta of choice (penne, rotini etc.)
Breadcrumbs (I use Edward & Sons Italian blend, which is vegan and found at Whole Foods)

Salt - 1 tsp.
Black Pepper - 1 tsp.
Balsamic Vinegar - 1 Tablespoon
Fennel Seeds - light sprinkle (gives the taste of sausage without extra fat or calories)

Heat 1 TBSP olive oil in large soup pot
When hot, fry garlic, onion and red pepper a few minutes
Add tomatoes
Stir in tofu puree sauce, basil and broccoli
Stir in Spices

Cook over medium heat a few minutes
Stir in cooked pasta

Transfer mixture to a round Pyrex baking dish

Bake covered with foil for 30 minutes at 350 degrees
Uncover and sprinkle breadcrumbs over the top
Turn off the oven and turn it to Broil
Broil the pasta covered with breadcrumbs until just brown (watch closely)

Serve with big salad and a nice crusty loaf of bread and veggie meatballs (Trader Joe's is the brand we love)

Homemade Graham Cracker Style Cookies

I got creative today and made B. some homemade graham crackers.  Not something I'd do all the time, but it was a fun project - I hope he likes them!  (recipe from Parents magazine, subbing in Earth Balance for the butter, agave & molasses for the honey and soy milk for the milk -

  • 2-1/2  cups all-purpose flour
  • 1  cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 3  Tbs.toasted wheat germ
  • 1  tsp.baking soda
  • 1/2  tsp.salt
  • 1/2  tsp.ground cinnamon
  • 1/2  cup (1 stick) cold butter, cut up
  • 1/4  cup honey
  • 2  Tbs.milk
  • 1  tsp.vanilla
  • 2  Tbs.granulated sugar
Heat oven to 350°F.
In a large food processor fitted with a metal blade or by hand, mix flour, brown sugar, wheat germ, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
Cover and process until well combined.
Add butter (use the tines of a fork if mixing by hand).
Cover and process until fine crumbs form. Add honey, milk, and vanilla.
Cover and process until mixture starts to hold together. If necessary, place in a bowl and work with your hands until dough is smooth.
Divide in half and flatten each half to a disk.

On a lightly floured work surface, roll each half of dough to a 9 x 8-inch rectangle.
Use cookie cutter to cut into shapes. 
Sprinkle each lightly with granulated sugar.
Bake about 8 minutes or until lightly browned.
Transfer cookies to wire racks and let cool completely.

Original Recipe:

Almond Cookies - What to do with Almond Pulp (after making almond milk)

This recipe is not raw, but it's a "healthy" cookie to make with left over almond pulp

I made this in the Kitchen Aid Mixer

Cream together: 1 cup sugar 1 cup butter(vegan version is Earth Balance and can be found at Whole Foods etc.)

Add and mix well: 2 tsp vanilla 1 tsp cinnamon (optional) 1 cup almond pulp

Add, 2 1/2 cups flour(I used White Whole Wheat flour)

Roll dough into balls

Press each dough ball into a mixture of cinnamon sugar and then into a bowl of slivered toasted almonds (got mine at Trader Joe's)

Bake 10 minutes at 350 degrees and cool on cookie rack.

Not too sweet and makes a good cookie to go with coffee!

Fresh Almond Milk - All nutrients, no additivies!

B. (my little one) has been enjoying having cold cereal for breakfast so I wanted to give him an alternative to commercial sugary Soy Milk.

Most commercial milk alternatives have lots of additives, so I took a shot at making my own raw almond milk and it turned out great!  It has a natural sweetness to it, but you could add some sweetener if you choose, but I'd wait until you try it plain first, especially if you're using it on cereal.  B.'s cereal is sweet enough that it sweetens the milk (he LOVES Shredded Spoonfuls cereal)

B. had some with no complaint, and I guess that says a lot coming from toddler who is used to Vanilla Soy Milk!

Raw Almond Milk
  • 1 cup soaked almonds (Soak in a bowl in the refrigerator overnight and rinse before using, this step is essential for it to turn out right - it makes the almonds plump and softer) - I got my raw almonds at Trader Joe's
  • 3 cups water
  • Blender - We have a high speed Vitamix blender, which is awesome
To make raw almond milk blend the soaked almonds with the water until smooth.
Then strain the mixture through strainer into a big bowl.

(Save the almond pulp in a container and put in the refrigerator for later use in baking cookies, adding to pancakes, etc.)

This milk will last in the refrigerator for about 3-5 days. Shake well before using.

This recipe makes enough almond milk for about 3 full bowls of cereal
(The glass is unused milk we had left over after both B. and I had enough almond milk for a bowl of cereal each)

Creamy Avocado & Banana "Pudding"

Something I make for my little one, but make sure I have enough for me too!  Great source of healthy fats and fiber!

1 Banana
1 Ripe Avocado, out of skin with seed out
Cinnamon to taste

Put it all in a mini food processor (I love my Ninja processor) and blend until creamy - less than a minute!

*For a variation, add cocoa powder or other fruit, like strawberry

This recipe is 100% natural - no high fructose corn syrup, added fat or artificial ingredients

Also a good source of fiber, potassium, good fat, Vitamin E, Magnesium, Folate and several others

Older kids will think the green is fun!

Potato Cauliflower Chickpea Curry

Potato Cauliflower Chickpea Curry
1 Jar Trader Joe's Curry Simmer Sauce
1 Can Lite Coconut Milk (got at Trader Joe's)
1 Can Chickpeas, Drained
1 Can Diced Tomatoes, Drained

1 Head Cauliflower, Cut up and steamed in microwave until tender
4 Russet poatoes, Peeled, Cut into cubes and boiled until tender
Grated Ginger to taste
1/2 Yellow Onion, Diced
1 TBSP Garlic, Chopped

Mix all ingredients together in large pot and simmer until warmed through.

Serve with rice, quinoa or couscous - and if you're feeling extra "carby", naan or roti (bread)

Super easy and SO yummy!  :)

Unstuffed Cabbage Roll Casserole

Unstuffed Cabbage Roll Casserole

• Veggie Ground Beef
• 1 large onion, chopped
• 3 garlic cloves, minced
• Spaghetti Sauce (1 jar or as much as needed)
• 2 cups cooked brown rice
• 1 medium head cabbage, cut into thin strips

1. Spray large skillet with cooking spray, cook the veggie ground beef, onion and garlic over medium heat, adding water as needed.
2. Stir in tomato sauce. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat: Stir in rice; heat through. Remove from the heat.
3. Spray 9x13 Pyrex with cooking spray. Layer 1/2 of the cabbage on bottom of pan. Top with the veggie meat/rice/tomato sauce mixture.
4. Top with remaining cabbage and tomato sauce.
5. Cover and bake at 375 degrees F for 1 hour. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving.

Indian Inspired Burritos

Indian Inspired Burritos

I made up a kid-friendly vegan, "Indian Burrito" recipe.  It's fast, easy, freezable and healthy!

1 Jar of Trader Joe’s Curry Simmer Sauce
1 14.5 oz. cans of Chickpeas
1 cup of Couscous
1 15.5 oz. can of Diced Tomatoes
Large Burrito Tortillas
Tofutti Sour Cream (optional)
Cilantro (optional)

*Makes 7 burritos

Nutritional Info Per Burrito: 380 calories, 5 fat (without sour cream)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees

Prepare couscous – microwave 1 cup of water with 1 cup of couscous, fluff with fork

In a bowl, mix the prepared couscous with the chickpeas and can of diced tomatoes and a few tablespoons of the Curry Simmer Sauce

Coat the bottom of a Pyrex 9x13 baking dish with some of the Curry Simmer Sauce so the burritos don’t stick

Spoon the mixture into the tortillas and wrap

Place the burritos in the Pyrex and coat each with more Curry Simmer Sauce

Bake at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes just to warm the burritos through

Top with Tofutti Sour Cream and chopped cilantro (optional) on a bed of mixed greens


This is a blog of various veggie meals I that create for my family, including toddler. 

My hope is to share quick, creative and interesting recipes for people who would like to incorporate more vegetarian meals and pack more nutrition into their diet without sacrificing taste or satisfaction.

I hope you enjoy it!