• Dairy Free,  Gluten Free,  Main Course,  Recipe,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Creamy Peanut Pad Thai Noodles (Vegan+GF)

    I don’t know about you but I really, really love noodle dishes and am always excited to add them to the menu for lunch or dinner. Of course, they can be pretty heavy sometimes so that’s why I love to freshen them up with lots of colorful veggies and, of course, plenty of flavors!

    In case you haven’t noticed I’ve been having a thing with both peanut butter and Asian foods recently. Wow, I never thought of myself as being one-track minded but maybe I was wrong. I can, however, admit to being a creature of habit and returning again and again to the same things when I find a favorite so this is one of those instances.

    It’s simple and quick which are two of the first things we love to hear about a recipe, am I right? In my current Asian food craze I went for a Thai peanut sauce that’s one of my personal faves (always and forever!). When I’m writing a recipe I try to think how I can make it as adaptable as possible to fit your preferences, and that’s what I tried to do here.

    You can easily replace any of the veggies with other ones you’d prefer. If you have a peanut allergy (I guess it’s very unlikely if you’ve made it this far but still) you can use any nut butter instead (almond, cashew…..). Oh, this is also really good with sunbutter or tahini. You can add tofu or tempeh…… Basically, don’t hesitate to change this up.

    I hope you enjoy and if you do try it I’d love to hear what you think!

    Creamy Peanut Pad Thai Noodles (Vegan+GF)

    A classic Asian dish that makes for a delightful lunch or dinner any day of the week. It comes together quickly and easily, plus it's gluten free with a vegan option!
    Prep Time 10 minutes
    Cook Time 35 minutes
    Total Time 35 minutes
    Servings 8 servings

    Ingredients

    • 8 ounces flat rice noodles cooked according to package instructions
    • 1 zucchini julienned
    • 1 red pepper thinly sliced
    • 2 medium carrots julienned
    • 1 cup sugar snap peas
    • 1 cup broccoli florets

    Sauce:

    • 2/3 cup natural creamy peanut butter
    • 1/4 cup reduced sodium soy sauce if gluten free use tamari or coconut aminos
    • 3 cloves garlic minced
    • 1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
    • 1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
    • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
    • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
    • 1 teaspoon Sriracha optional
    • cilantro and peanuts for garnish if desired

    Instructions

    1. In a medium bowl, whisk together peanut butter, soy sauce, garlic, hoisen, ginger, rice vinegar, sesame oil and Sriracha, if using; set aside.
    2. Add the carrots, bell pepper, broccoli, and snap peas to pan along with about 1/2 cup water. Cover and steam until water is nearly evaporated then add the zucchini and the prepared sauce and stir gently over heat for about 3 minutes. Toss in the noodles and stir well until everything is heated through, about 3 more minutes.

    3. Serve immediately, garnished with cilantro and peanuts, if desired.

  • Dairy Free,  Gluten Free,  Main Course,  Recipe,  Sides,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Vietnamese Bahn Mi Bowls (Vegan+GF)

    I’m trying to figure out why our Summer here seems to have gone on vacation. The weather forecast for this week is cold and rainy even though it’s freaking July. I guess it’s better than the alternative of scorching heat, but it’s kinda depressing. What’s not depressing though, is this recipe….

    Ok, before you say anything, I’m completely aware that this bowl doesn’t make a huge amount of sense. Bahn mi actually means “bread” in Vietnamese so not having bread is a kind of like missing the point and insulting this Vietnamese classic. In case you haven’t noticed, I don’t do well with rules and I just don’t feel like following any when it comes to my creations.

    I like to tailor recipes to what I, or whoever I’m cooking for, like. I have two small issues with a bahn mi. Firstly, I’m honestly not a huge fan of bread. I know, I know, you’re probably judging me so hard right now. Most people are obsessed with their bread and can’t imagine life without it. And believe me, it’s not because I have a problem with gluten or anything, I just much prefer rice or pasta for my carbs.

    Secondly, mayo is disgusting, ok? Change my mind of you want but even in my many years of eating “normally” I hated it. That’s why I decided to make a simple spicy tahini “mayo” to go with this instead. It takes all of a minute to stir together and you can use it on everything.

    Obviously you can switch out the rice with some bread and build a delicious, more traditional, bahn mi sandwich but I think you should definitely give this a try.

    Vietnamese Bahn Mi Bowls (Vegan+GF)

    These bowls are inspired by a classic Vietnamese favorite and are perfect for lunches to go or meal prep dinners.

    Prep Time 15 minutes
    Cook Time 30 minutes
    Pickling Time 4 hours
    Servings 4 servings

    Ingredients

    Pickled Veggies:

    • 1 cup carrots, julienned
    • 1 large cucumber, seeded and julienned
    • 1 cup radishes, thinly sliced
    • 1 cup shredded red cabbage
    • 2 teaspoons salt
    • 1/4 cup sugar
    • 1 cup water
    • 1 cup rice wine vinegar

    Tahini Mayo:

    • 1/4 cup tahini
    • 1/4 cup water
    • 2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar
    • 1 teaspoon sriracha
    • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt

    Marinated Tofu:

    • 1 16 ounce block extra firm tofu, cubed
    • 1 teaspoon ginger, finely minced
    • 1 teaspoon fresh garlic, minced
    • 1/4 cup soy sauce (use coconut aminos or tamari if gf)
    • 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
    • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
    • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
    • 1 teaspoon chili flakes
    • 2 tablespoons corn starch

    Bowls:

    • 4 cups cooked white or brown rice
    • 1 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped
    • 2 Serrano peppers, thinly sliced (optional)
    • 1 tablespoon black or white sesame seeds

    Instructions

    Pickled Veggies:

    1. Stir together the water, vinegar, sugar, and salt in a medium bowl. Add all the veggies and stir to coat. Store in an airtight container for at least 4 hours before servings.

    Tahini Mayo:

    1. Stir together the ingredients for the tahini mayo. It might seem thin at first but as you stir it will begin to thicken. Set aside until ready to make up the bowls.

    Marinated Tofu:

    1. Whisk together the ingredients for the marinade and toss the tofu to coat. Set aside to marinade for at least 20 minutes. Heat a non-stick skillet over medium-mow heat. Add the tofu and cook for 10 - 15 minutes, turning to brown all sides.

    Bowls:

    1. To make the bowls warm your rice (or serve cold if you prefer) and scoop desired amounts into bowls along with the pickled veggies, fresh cilantro, and tofu. Drizzle tahini mayo over bowls as desired or serve along side. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and enjoy.

    Recipe Notes

    The pickled veggies can be made as little as 4 hours before you finish this recipe but I highly recommend trying to give them at least 24 hours for the best results.

  • Dairy Free,  Gluten Free,  Main Course,  Recipe,  Sides,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Un-fried Veggie Stir-Fry Rice (Vegan+GF)

    Is it finally almost over, the craziness? This year has been anything but expected and I’m sure we’re all eager to return to whatever “normal” we left behind a few months ago.

    On the upside, I’ve definitely been able to spend more time on the blog than I could’ve imagined. I haven’t created so many recipes in a long time. I’ve actually been trying to look at this situation in the best, most positive light. I feel very fortunate to be in a position where I can work from home during all of this. Yes, I’ve missed socializing with friends and I’ll be very happy to get that back, but this time has been pretty good for me. What about you? Are you ready for “normal” back?

    Ok, so I can definitely get down with some real deal fried rice every now and then. Let’s be honest though, it’s not exactly the healthiest side dish for regular consumption. If I had to choose my favorite type of food it would probably be Chinese. My favorite is actually any authentic Asian food, but sometimes we have to settle for our faux American versions (that are really far from real Asian cuisine, lol).

    Rice is basically the best whole grain there is. Obviously that’s my personal opinion, but seriously, why is it so good??? I love this dish because it’s really quick and easy. It’s also full of veggies and there’s space for even more if you want to get in some extra health.

    So the key is to use cooked, cooled rice to get the best result. Otherwise you’ll end up with kinda mushy rice and nobody wants that. I used brown rice for this recipe but white rice would also be good. Go with what you feelin! 😉

    Un-fried Stir-Fry Rice (Vegan+GF)

    Skip the take-out tonight and make your own healthier version at home tonight.

    Prep Time 15 minutes
    Cook Time 30 minutes
    Servings 6 - 8 servings

    Ingredients

    • 4 cups brown rice, steamed and cooled
    • 1 cup celery, diced
    • 2 cups carrots, chopped
    • 1 cup onion, diced
    • 1 cup cauliflower, riced
    • 1 cup corn
    • 1 cup sweet peas
    • 2 cans water chestnuts, drained
    • 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
    • 1/3 cup coconut aminos you can sub soy sauce or tamari
    • 1 teaspoon sea salt optional
    • 2 cups vegetable broth
    • 1 - 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil optional (but yummy)
    • 1 - 2 teaspoons Trader Joe's Everything but the bagel seasoning you can sub sesame seeds or simply skip this

    Instructions

    1. In a large saucepan, over medium heat, add the celery, onion, carrots, cauliflower, and a cup of vegetable broth. Saute for 7-8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions are translucent. Most of the broth should have evaporated as well.

    2. Add the garlic and cook a few more minutes until softened. Now add the sesame oil, coconut aminos, peas, corn, and water chestnuts and cook for 2-3 minutes until warmed. Add in the rice and remaining cup of broth and stir over heat for 5-7 minutes, or until the rice has absorbed all the liquid and is hot throughout.

    3. Season to taste with salt and pepper and top with everything but the bagel seasoning or with toasted sesame seeds.

  • Dairy Free,  Main Course,  Recipe,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Vegan Roasted Garlic & Mushroom Farfalle Pasta

    Pasta is such a quick and easy weeknight meal. This vegan roasted garlic and mushroom farfalle pasta is sure to be a crowd-pleaser! It’s a must try pasta recipe!
    mushroom and roasted garlic paste recipe

    This post is all about Roasted Garlic & Mushroom Farfalle Pasta

    So let’s talk about this vegan roasted garlic & mushroom pasta! Please tell me that you have all had the chance to eat at The Cheesecake Factory at least once??? Not exactly one of the healthiest places but it has it’s merits. It’s also not very vegan friendly, but I haven’t always been vegan. When I was a kid it was one of my family’s favorite restaurants.

    roasted garlic mushroom pasta

    We don’t have one near us now so I haven’t been in years, but when we used to eat there my mom and I both loved this one dish they had. Their bowtie pasta with this yummy roasted garlic cream sauce that leaves you wanting to keep going back in for more even when you’re stuffed to your limit. It also doesn’t help that the portion sizes they serve at CF are enough for about four people (not that I’m complaining, hello leftovers!). Obviously it’s nowhere close to being a vegan dish, but that doesn’t mean it can converted at home. ;P

    roasted mushroom pasta

    Roasted garlic is sort of the star component to this sauce and it’s so, so easy to do. If you aren’t already going to be using your oven for another purpose though, it does seem a bit wasteful to heat the whole thing just for a head or two of garlic and that’s why I love using a toaster oven that heats a much smaller space.

    garlic bowtie mushroom pasta

    Every time I use roasted garlic I have one of those hand-to-forehead moments wondering why I don’t do it more. Then there is something about combining it with all of these flavors that makes the finished dish irresistible. Pasta would definitely be near the top of my weakness list and this is one of my all time faves!

    FAQs for How to make Vegan Roasted Garlic & Mushroom Farfalle Pasta:

    Can I use a different kind or shape of pasta noodles?

    Yes, you can use any different shape of basic pasta noodles or even trade out the noodles with some gluten free pasta like Banza or Red Lentil Pasta.

    Can I skip or substitute the mushrooms and peas?

    Yes. You can trade them out for any veggies. I love using broccoli or zucchini in this recipe.

     

    creamy garlic mushroom pasta

    Here are some other posts you may enjoy:

    Broccoli & Cashew Pesto Pasta (Vegan+GF)

    Vegan Roasted Red Pepper Orzo Pasta Skillet

    Creamy Zucchini Penne Pasta (Vegan+GF)

    Roasted Garlic & Mushroom Farfalle Pasta (Vegan)

    Pasta is such a quick and easy weeknight meal. This one especially will always be a crowd-pleaser.

    Prep Time 5 minutes
    Cook Time 20 minutes
    Servings 4 - 6 servings

    Ingredients

    • 1 tablespoon olive oil
    • 1 head garlic
    • 1 small onion diced
    • 1/4 cup dry white wine
    • 1/4 cup coconut milk
    • 1 cup plain cashew yogurt you can sub any plant-based yogurt
    • 4 cups Portobello mushrooms, sliced
    • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
    • 1 cup shelled spring peas
    • 12 ounces farfalle bow tie pasta, cooked according to package
    • Sea salt and cracked black pepper to taste

    Instructions

    1. Preheat the oven [a toaster oven is best if you've got it] to 400 degrees F (200 C). Take the head of garlic and use a serrated edge knife to slice off the top just enough that you're exposing the garlic cloves a bit. Place the garlic on a piece of foil and drizzle with olive oil (about a tablespoon), then wrap foil around the head and place it on a small baking tray. Roast it in the oven for 30 to 35 minutes until the garlic feels really soft. when you press on the outside. 2. Let it cool, then gently squeeze the bulb and the cloves of garlic should pop right out. Place the cloves in a small bowl and mash with a fork, then set aside.
    2. In a large, high-sided skillet cook the onion for 4 to 5 minutes until translucent. Now add the roasted garlic and pour in the white wine to deglaze the pan. Stir to loosen anything stuck to the pan and allow the wine to mostly evaporate, then reduce heat to lowest setting.

    3. Add in the mushrooms and coconut milk and continue stirring until the sauce begins to thicken slightly and mushrooms start to cook, then add in the cashew yogurt, nutritional yeast and stir until evenly mixed. Season sauce to taste with salt and pepper.

    4. Add the peas and stir over medium high until heated through. Lastly, add the pasta and stir well to coat in sauce. Simmer over low heat for about 5 minutes until hot. Serve and enjoy.

    This post was all about Roasted Garlic & Mushroom Farfalle Pasta

    Roasted Garlic & Mushroom Farfalle Pasta

  • Dairy Free,  Main Course,  Recipe,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Cheesy Broccoli “Cheddar” Pizza (Vegan+GF)

    Happy whatever today is. Is this mess of a month over yet?

    Okay, well maybe some homemade pizza will help us get through.

    Ever since I’ve been plant-based I’ve discovered that there are a few standard questions to expect when talking about it with others. Numero uno; “Where do you get your protein?”. Second; “Don’t you miss cheese? I mean bacon tho!?!?”. Third; “Is your whole family vegan?”  All of which send me into a fit of laughter, especially three. Let’s just say that I’m the only one in my family who eats this way and they all basically think I’m crazy even though I’m very happy about it.

    So I was informed by pretty much everyone in my family that putting broccoli on a pizza is a blasphemous act. Oh, but it gets better. When they found out that it didn’t even have dairy cheese they nearly disowned me. If you’re with them on these opinions, feel free to find another recipe because today we’re making a vegan pizza.

    Maybe if I called it a flatbread it would be less offensive? Whatever, we’re sticking with “pizza” and I personally loved how this turned out. It’s a really quick and easy recipe and it’s perfect for any season. I love that it is a sneaky way to make broccoli exciting. Maybe you’ve got kiddos that would dig this or maybe you just need some help getting in more green in your own diet.

    If you do try this please share your results! I’d love nothing more than to prove that there are other crazies like me who agree this is, in fact, allowed to be called “pizza”.

    Cheesy Broccoli "Cheddar" Pizza (Vegan+GF)

    Peppers and mushrooms aren't the only veggies that get to star on a pizza. Here's a fun way to add more veggies to your life.

    Prep Time 30 minutes
    Cook Time 20 minutes
    Servings 4 - 6 servings

    Ingredients

    • 1 pizza crust *see note
    • 3 cups fresh broccoli florets, chopped
    • 2 teaspoons olive oil
    • 4 cloves garlic, mined
    • 1 onion, diced
    • 3/4 cup nutritional yeast
    • 1 cup unflavored plant-based milk
    • 2 tablespoons cashew butter
    • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
    • sea salt & pepper to taste
    • shelled hemp hearts optional

    Instructions

    1. Preheat oven to 400 F (200 C). Line a pizza pan with parchment or lightly grease with oil.

    2. In a medium non-stick pan, cook the onion, garlic, and broccoli with olive oil until the broccoli begins to soften and garlic is browned. Pour in the milk, lemon juice, cashew butter, and nutritional yeast and stir over heat until it begins to thicken.

    3. Add salt and pepper to taste. Roll out the prepared pizza crust dough into a large circle as thin as you'd like (I usually do about a 12-inch circle). Spread the mixture over the pizza and sprinkle the top with hemp hearts. Bake for 15 - 18 minutes or until edges are golden brown.

    4. Remove from oven and allow it to cool for 5 to 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

    Recipe Notes

    Recipe HERE or you can use your own (or try my fave "everything bagel" crust!) For this pizza I actually used a pre-made pizza dough from Trader Joe's. You can find pre-made dough from most grocery stores. If you're gluten free you can buy or make the crust gluten free.

  • Dairy Free,  Gluten Free,  Main Course,  Recipe,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Indian Red Lentil Dahl (Vegan+GF)

    I’ve got a new one today, something I’ve actually never made before.

    I know it’s kind of a love it or hate it type of food, but I love pretty much any Indian dish. When I was a younger my family never really liked it so I didn’t make it much. Of course, now it’s like a staple when I’m batch cooking for just me or me and my roomies. This dish is great to make ahead because it almost gets better next day.

    Curries are something that I make all the time but I’ve never made a dahl (also spelled dal or daal). If you’ve never tried it either you might be wondering what it is. It’s basically just a thick lentil stew with lots of spices. I love it because it’s quick, easy, very filling, and super nutritious. You can serve it with rice or naan bread/pitas.

    Personally, I’m a rice girl. It’s not that I’m afraid of gluten or anything though, I just LOVE rice! If you’re more of a bread lover than you can use store-bought or homemade pitas. Hey, and who says you can’t do both? I’m down with that I just didn’t feel like making pitas for this particular recipe. #feelinglazy

    Okay, so if you do try this please let me know here on the blog or tag me in a photo on one of your socials!

    Indian Red Lentil Dahl (Vegan+GF)

    This quick and easy Indian dish is the perfect weeknight dinner or make ahead lunch!

    Prep Time 15 minutes
    Cook Time 30 minutes
    Servings 4 - 5 servings

    Ingredients

    • 1 cup dry red lentils rinsed
    • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
    • 1 small yellow onion, peeled and diced
    • 1 jalapeno pepper stemmed, seeded, and minced
    • 3 garlic cloves, minced
    • 1 tablespoon ginger root, finely minced
    • 1 whole cinnamon stick
    • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
    • 1 teaspoon black pepper
    • 1 teaspoon cumin
    • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
    • 1 cup vegetable broth
    • 4 Roma tomatoes, diced
    • 2 cups fresh spinach

    For Serving

    • Sliced avocado and cilantro leaves for garnish (optional)
    • rice or pita bread

    Instructions

    1. Pour the lentils into a fine mesh sieve and rinse well until the water runs clear. Place lentils in a medium saucepan along with 3 cups of water. Place over medium low heat and allow the lentils to cook for 20 minutes, halfway covered.

    2. Meanwhile, heat the sesame oil in a medium non-stick skillet set over medium heat. Add the onion, green chili pepper, garlic, and ginger. cook for 4 to 5 minutes, until the onions begin to soften. Add the cinnamon stick and other spices, along with the tomatoes. Cook for 5 to 6 minutes until the tomatoes are softened, then remove the cinnamon stick.

    3. After the 20 minutes, drain any excess water from the lentils. Add the broth, spinach, and lentils to the skillet with everything else and stir well. Simmer, stirring occasionally for about 10 minutes until the spinach is cooked and the everything has thickened. Season to taste with additional salt,

    4. Garnish with cilantro and avocado if desired and serve with rice and naan/pitas.

  • organic black rice ramen
    Dairy Free,  Gluten Free,  Main Course,  Recipe,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Vegan Black Rice Ramen with Miso & Tofu (Gluten Free)

    Make dinner easy tonight with this ramen upgrade. Forbidden black rice ramen combined with tofu and vegetables makes this a healthy, easy meal.

    black rice ramen miso soup

    This post is all about vegan black rice ramen

    Ramen, it’s comfort food beloved worldwide by college students, struggling creatives, and everyone who hates cooking.

    black rice ramen recipe

    It’s quick, easy, salty, and so comforting, but I think we can all agree it’s not exactly the healthiest option. In a time like this though, when the world is a little bizarre, ramen is probably acting as a staple for more than a few. Besides, today we’re talking about a pretty healthy upgrade from your standard nineteen cent bowl of noodle soup.

    black rice ramen noodle

    I’m always surprised to realize how few people enjoy cooking in today’s day and age. It’s probably because I enjoy it so much that I can’t understand others not wanting to even cook simple things. I will admit though, that I even have times when I’d prefer to take some short-cuts. This is one of those times that I think a short-cut doesn’t seem like a bad idea. Besides, we’re going to upgrade this meal and add extra health.

    lotus foods black rice ramen

    So you might be wondering what black rice (also called “forbidden rice”) is and why it’s any better than other rice. Well, the answer is in its rich, dark color full of antioxidants. In Chinese culture it was once so highly prized for its health benefits that it was “forbidden” to anyone but the emperor, giving it the name. It’s contains higher amounts of protein and iron than other rice varieties as well. You can buy the black rice ramen I used in this recipe on Amazon.

    how to cook black rice ramen

    Vegan Black Rice Ramen with Miso & Tofu (Gluten Free)

    Take a few extra minutes to give your favorite comfort food a health makeover.

    Servings 4 servings

    Ingredients

    Miso Paste:

    Ramen

    Instructions

    Miso Paste:

    1. Combine all the ingredients for the miso paste together in a blender or food processor until a smooth, thick paste forms. You'll only need half for this recipe so you can refrigerate or freeze the extra for later use.

    Baked Tofu:

    1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190C) and line a baking tray with parchment. Use paper towels or a tofu press to get out as much liquid from the tofu as you can. Cut into cubes and gently toss in a large bowl with the sesame oil. Place on tray and bake for 20 - 25 minutes or until browned on the edges. Once the tofu has browned, remove pan from oven and allow to cool.

    Soup Base:

    1. In a non-stick skillet add the mushrooms and cook for 2 - 3 minutes until mostly cooked. Add about a tablespoon of miso paste stir until warmed. Add the stock and lime juice then bring to a simmer. Take about 1/2 cup of the miso paste in a very fine sieve. Lower the sieve half-way into the simmering soup and use a spoon to slowly dissolve the paste into the soup. Throw away the pieces left in the sieve and simmer the soup for another 5 minutes. Add salt to taste (you can also use soy sauce or tamari).

    Ramen:

    1. Cook the ramen noodles according to package instructions and drain well. Divide the noodles into four large bowl and ladle the soup on top (you'll probably have extra). Top each bowl with the tofu, scallions, and sesame oil. Serve with additional limes.

    This post was all about vegan black rice ramen

    Here are some other posts you may enjoy:

    Spicy Thai Vegetable Tahini Stir-Fry Ramen (Vegan+GF)

    Crunchy Ramen Noodle Salad with Thai Red Curry Sauce + Sesame Caramelized Cashews

    Cozy Vegetable Sweet Pea Soup (Vegan+GF)

    organic black rice ramen