Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Easy Lentil Meatballs

Preheat oven to 350
Line baking sheet with foil and spray with cooking spray
Set aside

In a large bowl, combine the following:


1 can black lentils, drained and rinsed
1 c oatmeal
1 c corn meal
1/2 c. spaghetti sauce

Spices:  Granulated garlic, salt, pepper, basil and oregano to taste
*Another option is to add in shredded mozzarella but I left this out this time


With clean hands or plastic gloves, squish all ingredients together into a "dough"

Roll into small balls

If you can, refrigerate the "dough" for a while, about an hour or so
Heat frying pan with olive oil and brown lentil balls on both sides
Transfer to oven to keep warm and finish baking, about 5-10 min.

Serve with a side of pasta and sauce
*Cover with sauce ONLY just before serving, so they don't get soggy

Easy and surprisingly yummy AND good for you!

These also freeze well (without sauce) in a ziploc and just microwave to defrost when ready to use again!  

Monday, November 12, 2012

Pumpkin Oatmeal "Muffin" Cookies

These cookies have the hearty texture of a muffin and are not too sweet, so they go well with a nice glass of soy milk or a cup of coffee.  I call them a "breakfast cookie".  You can also freeze them and pull them out one at a time to defrost in your diaper bag for on the go breakfasts/snacks.

I wasn't too sure about these because they are not overly sweet and seemed too healthy, but my 3 year old boy exclaimed "These are GOOD, Mommy!" and ate about 3 of them at snack time.  My 1 year old also had some without throwing them at me.  So I guess they're a keeper!

I used this original recipe

and added in 1/2 c. finely chopped kale and a handful of dark chocolate chips

I also cut the sugar.  Instead of the full amount of brown sugar I only used about 1 TBSP, plus 1 TBSP molasses

I subbed in ground flax mixed with hot water to equal the egg whites.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Perfectly "Cheesy" Crispy Tofu Scramble

There are lots of ways to prepare tofu scramble, some involving chopped various vegetables or adding in exotic spices.

Mine is simple, "cheesy" and perfectly crusty on the outside and chewy on the inside.

Does that sound delishish or disgusting...Depends on who you ask I guess, but for me and my family it is "Tofu Wa Bohu" - silly term courtesy of my husband's fantastic sense of humor  (a play on a nifty phrase picked up from one of our pastor's recent sermon references, 'tohu wa bohu' - - taking something formless and turning it into something wonderful.

Anyway, here is my method.  It does involve finding and investing in Nutritional Yeast, a type of Brewer's Yeast that makes vegan food very tasty and full of B vitamins.  You can find it easily at Whole Foods.


Extra Firm Tofu (1 or 2 blocks depending on how many you are serving) - preferably pressed of most of the water (I have a Tofu XPress but you can use heavy plates or gently squeeze the block by hand)

Nutritional Yeast

Garlic Powder, Salt, Pepper


Butter for frying (we use Earth Balance, which is vegan)


Heat the skillet, add butter
Add full block of tofu - fry until beginning to brown on both sides

At this point, begin to break of the tofu into chunks with your spatula

In a cup, combine about 4 TBSP Nutritional Yeast with 1/2 c. water

As you continue to fry the tofu, gradually add the yeasty liquid (mmm...right?  It is, trust me!)

Keep frying and as the tofu brown and the liquid begins to get crusty, scrape the pan and do this over and over, frying continually

You can just leave the tofu in the pan on the stove frying and checking it until you use up all of the liquid and the tofu is evenly browned and crunchy

By now it is perfect and ready to serve alongside toast, veggie sausage, pancakes, or whatever you usually eat for breakfast/brunch.

Pumpkin-y Chocolate Chip Waffles (with secret kale, carrot and apple!)

I made these, using this original recipe

Mine weren't so much pumpkin-tasting as they were filled with pumpkin nutrition and goodness.  They are more like chocolate chip waffles filled with good-for-you veggies and fruit.  :)

I blended a handful of kale into the milk and added in grated carrot and apple and added chocolate chips.  I prepared them in a waffle maker and cut off the messy edges with a pizza cutter to make them more square.

Makes about 10 waffles

Serving with roasted potatoes, tofu scramble and veggie sausage.

Mmmmmmm...Breakfast for dinner! 

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Barley & Baked Bean "Meat Loaf"

 Barley & Baked Bean "Meat Loaf"

We pre-freeze portioned amounts of cooked barley, rice and quinoa and always have various canned beans and veggie burgers on hand so this was a relatively quick dish to throw together before baking.

This recipe was adapted from a Weight Watchers recipe that used turkey and barley to make a meat loaf.  You can find the original here


1 can (16 oz.) Baked Beans, drained and rinsed (vegetarian)
1 c. Cooked Pearl Barley
2 Veggie Burgers, chopped (Used Morningstar vegan patties)
1 TBSP Flax mixed with 3 TBSP Hot Water (to substitute for 1 egg)
1/4 c. Ketchup
1/2 small onion, diced and fried in oil until translucent


In a mixing bowl, mash beans with a potato masher
Add in barley, chopped veggie burger and ketchup, stir to combine
Add flax mixture and stir again

Spray a loaf pan with cooking spray
Press mixture into loaf pan with spoon
Top with more ketchup, if desired

Bake at 350 for 30-40 min. (Mine was done at 40 min.)

Let rest and then cut into slices.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Homemade "Tasty Things" Sesame Crackers

My 3 yr. old B. loves these sesame sticks he calls "tasty things" we get at Trader Joe's but we ran out and I can't seem to make my way over there so I improvised and found a recipe online.  Not exactly the same, but pretty close!  Close enough that I can add them to his snack mix and everyone's happy!  :)

I followed the recipe from this site

But, I changed the following:

Used regular whole wheat flour
1 tsp. salt instead of 1/2 tsp.
3 TBSP Sesame Oil with 2 TBSP Olive Oil, mixed
Added a sprinkle of garlic powder and nutritional yeast to the flour
Kneaded all in a KitchenAid and rolled out pretty thin, then sliced with pizza cutter into little sticks

Thursday, October 18, 2012

"Cheesy" Mexican Lasagna

2-3 Large Flour Tortillas
1 Can Beans of Choice (Pinto or Black), we used Pinto
1 Veggie Burger, chopped
Nacho "Cheese" Sauce (recipe below)
1 Can Tomato Soup, undiluted

Nacho "Cheese" Sauce

1 cup soy milk
1/3 cup nutritional yeast
2 tbsp whole-wheat flour
1/2 tsp granulated garlic powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp chili powder

Whisk ingredients together in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring often until thick.
Stir in beans and chopped veggie burger

Assemble Mexican Lasagna 

Set oven to 400

In a round glass pie plate layer flour tortilla, bean/burger/cheesy filling and flour tortilla
Top with Tomato Soup

Bake for 15-20 min.

Serve with chips, guacamole, sour cream

Monday, October 8, 2012

Crunchy Munchy Honey Cakes!

B.'s been listening to a lot of the Wiggles in movement class in preschool, so I thought it would be fun to make the cookie/cake they have a song about.  It's a rainy day...why not?

Anyway, I did my own twist on them and I don't know how they are *supposed* to look or taste, but they turned out yummy!  With the 2nd batch, I didn't form them into balls and instead just spread the mixture onto a baking sheet to make granola.  Both are great!


3 cups "muesli" - I used a mixture of oatmeal, chia seeds, quiona flakes, dried cranberries and some cinnamon with oatmeal being the main ingredient
1 cup self-rising flour, sifted
1/2 cup coconut
1/2 cup finely chopped carrots
1/2 cup sugar
9 Tbsp. coconut oil (or you can use butter)
3 Tbsp. soy milk
2 Tbsp. ground flax mixed with 3 Tbsp. water (just because, it's not an egg substitute in this recipe)
2 tsp. honey

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.

Combine muesli flakes, sifted flour, coconut, and sugar in a bowl and mix well.

Heat butter, milk, flax and water and honey. Pour over dry ingredients and mix well. Roll into balls the size of walnuts and place on a greased baking sheet.

Bake in a preheated oven at 325 degrees F for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Carrot Corn Muffins

This is a simple recipe using Bob's Red Mill Cornbread Mix - an easy way to sneak in extra veggies on the dinner table!

I simply made it vegan by substituting flax for eggs and soy milk for cow's milk and then added 1 can each canned carrots and canned corn (drained)

Makes 16 muffins


1 package Bob’s Red Mill Cornbread mix
2 TBSP Ground Flax mixed with 6 TBSP hot water in a bowl to equal 2 eggs
1 1/2 c Silk Soy Milk
1/3 c Coconut Oil (or you can use canola)
1 Can Canned Corn, drained
1 Can Canned Carrots, drained (the mixer will break up the carrot slices into small chunks)

Prepare according to package directions in KitchenAid
Pour into muffin tins sprayed with cooking spray and bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes
(test with toothpick after 20 min., if it comes out clean and they are slightly browned on the bottom, they are done)

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Sweet Pea Chocolate Pudding

Simple and deceptively delicious, easy chocolate pudding recipe that even my 3 year old loves! 

1 can Baby Peas, drained
1/2 can Black Beans, drained and rinsed
1 Banana
1/2 tsp. Vanilla Extract
1 TBSP Cocoa Powder
4 TBSP Brown Sugar
1 TBSP Cinnamon
Soy Milk

Combine all in a powerful blender (we have Vita-Mix)
Add soy milk as needed to thin

Once blended, transfer to a sauce pan on low heat

In a measuring cup, combine 1/4 c. soy milk with 3-4 TBSP cornstarch

Whisk into sauce pan of pudding and heat through

Chill and serve.

Yummy and good for you too!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Waffles (with secret lentils...shhh!)

*Using Arrowhead Mills Organic Kamut Pancake & Waffle Mix
(doubled recipe)

Made these as a thank you to my fantastic husband, who is also a great father to our 2 boys!  And it's a "secret ingredient" healthy recipe so my kids get in some extra nutrients  :)

Original Recipe (doubled):

2 c. Mix
Flax with water to equal 2 Eggs (2 TBSP flax and 6 TBSP hot water)
2 TBSP Oil (I used Coconut Oil, melted)
2 TBSP Brown Sugar (instead of honey)
1 1/2  c. Soy Milk

*Then I added in:
1 c. pureed pumpkin
Handful of dark chocolate chips
3-4 TBSP canned, rinsed and drained black lentils 

Heat in waffle maker until they are cooked.  If they are runny and sticking/burning, add more pancake mix to batter and try again (I had to do that...the first batch was a mess!)

Monday, September 10, 2012

Sneaky Scrambled Eggs

I don't like eggs but my son does.  Since I'll leave it up to him whether or not to be vegan, I'm finding ways to be creative with eggs to make them "veggier" since eggs are not vegetables!

This is a simple recipe that even my toddler likes.  You can add a little cheese when cooking to make them even more "undetectable" if you'd like.

2 eggs
1 TBSP half & half or soy milk (plain)
1 tsp melted butter
1 ice cube of pureed white beans
1 ice cube of pureed cauliflower

In a bowl, whisk all above ingredients with a little salt

Fry in a frying pan with a little more melted butter

That's it!  Sneaky veggies and a full belly for the boy! 

Monday, August 20, 2012

(Secret Squash) Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

 These "cookies" are more muffin-like in texture and density, and are good with morning coffee or a glass of milk.  Hearty enough to be a substantial snack on their own!

I've been trying to use up old baby food cubes the little one will no longer eat due to his distaste of purees!  He only wants "finger foods" so this was my solution to get him to eat his pumpkin and squash! (although I left out the chocolate chips for him and made some with chocolate chips for my older son).

In this recipe, you can sub in any combination of pumpkin/butternut squash that you like, as long as it equals 1 c. total - so you can make it all pumpkin, all butternut squash or a combination of both, which I did since I had both in the freezer.

My 3 yr. old helped me bake these and so the pumpkin/squash was no actual secret, but he was excited and didn't mind.  He even ate the pumpkin puree out of the mixing bowl when we were done!  That's my Veggie Boy!

Set oven to 350

Line 3 cookie sheets with aluminum foil sprayed with cooking spray or parchment paper

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 c. oatmeal
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 c. Earth Balance (butter alternative, or use butter)
  • 1/2 c. Coconut Oil 
  • *You can just use 1 c. butter instead of using coconut oil AND butter, but I like the taste 
  • 1 c packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 banana, mashed (*used as an egg replacer in this recipe and also in place of added sugar)
  • 1/2 c. Pureed Butternut Squash (use canned if you have it)
  • 1/2 c. Pureed Pumpkin (use canned if you have it)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 c. dark chocolate chips
Combine dry ingredients in a bowl

In a KitchenAid mixer, combine wet ingredients

Pour dry ingredients into wet and mix

Spoon onto cookie sheet lined with foil and sprayed with cooking spray and bake for 14 min. at 350

Let cool 2 min. on cookie sheet then transfer cookies to wire cooling racks

Freeze any leftovers in a Ziploc bag, and pull out some when needed, defrost in the microwave or let thaw "on the go" in your diaper bag, lunch bag or purse!

Carmelized Roasted Cauliflower (*or Broccoli)

This is a VERY yummy AND easy way to prepare either cauliflower or broccoli - even my 3 year old and 1 year olds both love it!  "Company Worthy" and good enough to serve to guests!  Goes with anything and it's ready in under 15 minutes!

The "secret ingredient" is...SUGAR.  That is what caramelizes them and makes them extra delicious.

Set oven to 500 (yes, 500)
Line a large metal cookie sheet with foil and spray with cooking spray
Set aside


I head Cauliflower or Broccoli, cup up into large florets
1-2 TBSP Olive Oil
1/2 tsp. Granulated Garlic
1/2 tsp. Sugar
1/2 tsp. Salt
1-2 TBSP *Nutritional Yeast (Optional, but does make the dish that much tastier - worth it if you have it!)


In a large bowl stir together all ingredients
Pour onto cookie sheet and put in hot oven

Roast, stirring every 5-10 min. until cauliflower/broccoli slightly browned on edges and soft to a knife pierce


Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Valentine Oatmeal Cookies (vegan)

 Baking day with my Big Boy B.  He's home from school on Valentine's Day so why not!  :)

Set Oven to 375

In Kitchenaid bowl, combine:

3/4 c. Earth Balance vegan butter, softened (or butter)
3/4 c. Sugar
2 TBSP Milk (Soy, Almond, etc.)
1 TBSP Ground Flax mixed with 3 TBSP hot water, let sit 5 min (or use 1 egg)
1 tsp vanilla

Beat these ingredients together until creamy.  Then add:

2 1/2 c. Whole Wheat flour
1 tsp. Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Salt

1 c. Oatmeal

Mix all together in Kitchenaid Mixer until it forms a stiff dough (don't refrigerate)

Roll out and cut into shapes with cookie cutters, top with candy, sprinkles etc.

Bake at 375 for 10 min., watching carefully until they are just starting to brown.

I liked the ones that were rolled thinnest and were crispy.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Chocolate Chip Raisin Oatmeal Cookies

Not exactly "health" food, but they do have oatmeal, whole wheat flour, raisins and flax in them!  And dark chocolate IS a health food!  ;-)

(Makes 2 Dozen)

Chocolate Chip Raisin Oatmeal Cookies

  • 1  cup Earth Balance vegan spread (or butter), softened
  • 3/4  cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/2  cup granulated sugar
  • 2 TBSP Ground Flax mixed with 6 TBSP hot water - I get my flax at BJ's, pre-ground in a bag (or 2  eggs)
  • 1-1/2  cups whole wheat flour
  • 1  teaspoon baking soda
  • 1  teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2  teaspoon salt (optional)
  • 3  cups Quaker® Oats (quick or old fashioned, uncooked)
  • 1/2  cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips (My go-to brand that is dairy free is Ghirardelli  semi-sweet)

Heat oven to 350°F. In Kitchen Aid mixer, beat butter and sugars on medium speed of electric mixer until creamy. Add flax mixture; beat well. Add combined flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt; mix well. Add oats, raisins and chocolate chips; mix well.
Drop dough by rounded tablespoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets.
Bake 11 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool 1 minute on cookie sheets; remove to wire rack. Cool completely. Store tightly covered.

Mexican Night! Burritos filled with mashed sweet potato, black beans and kale - topped with mole sauce

Burritos filled with mashed sweet potato, black beans and kale - topped with mole sauce.

Side of Mexican rice, chips and guacamole.

(Mexican rice is just brown rice mixed with 1 can diced tomatoes, garlic, cumin and corn)

Mole Sauce - combines chocolate and spice to make a tasty, smoky sauce

*The original recipe called for 1 c. almond butter but I scaled it to 4 TBSP and it still turned out great with less fat!

1/2 white or yellow onion finely chopped (I used my Ninja)
4-6 cloves garlic finely diced

Saute for 5 minutes the onion, garlic, 1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp ground cloves, 1/4 tsp ground black pepper (add some cayenne if you want to make spicier, I left it out so Ben could have some too)

Add 4 TBSP smooth almond butter until blended with seasonings.

Add1 can diced tomatoes

2 cups broth or water, some salt, and 1 slice of soft bread

Once all is combined and heated through, put sauce in blender (I have Vita-Mix) and puree until smooth

Pour sauce over burritos and bake in oven for 20 minutes (reserve remaining sauce to pour over burritos before serving)

Quinoa Black Bean Pilaf with Kale Salad


3 cups pre-cooked quinoa (we cook ours and freeze it in containers so we have it ready to go and all we have to do is microwave it)

3-4 cloves of garlic, chopped

1 can cooked sliced carrots, drained

1 cup frozen or fresh broccoli, chopped and cooked

1 can of peas or green beans, drained

*Any other veggies you want - tomatoes, corn, peppers, onions etc. (We added in finely chopped kale)

Spices - Lime juice, cumin, salt, pepper


In a large pot heat a little oil and fry the garlic a few minutes
Add in thawed/cooked quinoa, veggies

Stir in 3-4 tsp lime juice (or more to taste)
Salt, pepper and cumin

Kale Salad

3-4 cups kale, stripped from stems and torn into bite sized pieces
1-2 ripe avocados
Handful of pine nuts
Chopped veggies (tomatoes, cucumber etc.)
1 TBSP lemon juice
Salt and pepper

*This is messy but worth it -

Wash your hands and take off any rings
Add avocado flesh to kale and squish with your hands until the avocado is completely mashed and the kale is a bit wilted and the avocado makes a "dressing" over all the kale
Add lemon juice, salt, pepper and squish more until well blended

Chop any veggie toppings you want - Tomatoes, cucumber, red onion etc.
Mix into salad/avocado mixture

Toast pine nuts in a frying pan (no oil needed) and sprinkle on top of salad

*We also had left over roasted, marinated beets and arranged those on the salad

Broccoli Potato "Secret Bean" Soup

Broccoli Potato "Secret Bean" Soup
(Makes 4 servings)


4 cups fresh or frozen broccoli, cooked
(microwave about 5 min. in a microwave safe container with a few tablespoons of water until cooked)

10-15 small new potatoes, unpeeled and diced into small cubes - boiled until tender about 10 min.

1 can of Great Northern Beans, drained
2 cups plain soy milk
1/2 white or yellow onion, diced
1/2 c. finely chopped Kale
Salt and pepper to taste
2-4 TBSP Garlic, chopped
1 TBSP Olive Oil
2 TBSP Nutritional Yeast (optional)


In a large soup pot, heat oil and garlic, onion and kale, fry a few minutes

In a blender (Vitamix) blend the 2 c. soymilk and can of beans
Blend until smooth and creamy

Add to soup pot of garlic/onion/kale mixture

Stir in broccoli and potatoes

If soup is too chunky, ladle out some soup back into the blender and blend, then add back to pot.

Ladle into bowls and top with Bacon Bits or Croutons just before serving.

Serve with a salad and a good crusty whole grain bread, like Italian or French loaf.

Super Easy and Cheap Black Bean Soup

Take 1 can of black beans, empty into microwavable container, heat
(If you want to get crazy, you can defrost and add a sprinkle of frozen corn)
Add salsa, a dab of sour cream, a small sprinkle of cheese and 1-2 crumbled tortilla chips to the top
Stir and eat

About 350 calories, 3-4 fat
A can of black beans is about 80 cents and the rest I had on hand
Total cost under $2

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

"Dairy and Egg Free" Sweet Potato Chocolate Pudding

Sweet potato makes it creamy, but you can't taste anything but chocolate!

Almond milk, as needed to thin
1 microwaved sweet potato with skin removed
Steam a handful of baby carrots in the microwave

Put it all in the Vitamix with a small handful of choc. chips and a little vanilla extract and blend. 

That's it! 

Then you just refrigerate it.

Sweet and Savory Pasta Sauce

A yummy pasta sauce in the Vitamix using:
1 cooked sweet potato (microwaved until soft, then remove skin)
1 can of carrots (drained)
1 bag of  cubed butternut squash (roasted first)
1 can of white Northern Beans (drained and rinsed)

Just blend (adding in almond milk and/or water as needed) and then added in salt and garlic powder.

Pour into soup pot to warm.

Served over penne.

Not exactly "mac n cheese" but very tasty and healthy!