• Breakfast,  Dairy Free,  Gluten Free,  Holiday,  Recipe,  Snacks,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Pumpkin Spice Granola (Vegan+GF)

     

    Guys, guys, omg I’m just really excited Autumn is here!

    So this year hasn’t exactly given us much to look forward to but over my dead body is 2020 going to ruin the Holiday season for me. You feel me?

    Okay, this granola is probably my new favorite and that’s saying something because I make granola pretty often. Baking anything and everything with pumpkin and spices is always the quickest way to get into the Autumn mood.

    The only thing I’m slightly disappointed that I didn’t do with this recipe is add some pecans or walnuts. I just didn’t have any on hand because I’d already used them all. I mean, it’s still killer delicious without them, but you can never go wrong adding some nuts to granola. Definitely add some if you decide to make this. I don’t think most people realize how many possible combinations there are for granola. You can add just about anything in your baking cabinet and it’ll probably still turn out amazing. (Lol, please don’t take that too literally. I’m thinking like chocolate chips here, not like a cup of salt. ;P)

    Another perk with this recipe is that it’s gluten free, dairy free, and pretty low in fat. It’s not like, low low fat, but it’s oil free and pretty much the only fat is in the coconut and pepitas. And if you couldn’t care less about any of that, then great! It’s just a really good granola that tastes like Autumn and is delicious to eat in so many different ways.

    Pumpkin Spice Granola (Vegan+GF)

    Skip buying the overpriced granola at the store and make this delicious one at home. Add some chocolate chips and you'll have a snack to put Reese's puffs to shame.

    Prep Time 10 minutes
    Cook Time 1 hour
    Servings 12 servings

    Ingredients

    • 3 cups old-fashioned oats
    • 1 cup pumpkin puree
    • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
    • 2/3 cup coconut palm sugar (you can also use raw cane sugar or brown sugar but only use 1/2 cup if substituting)
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt, optional
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla
    • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
    • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice or more if you like it extra spiced
    • 1/2 cup unsweeted, dried coconut flakes
    • 2/3 cup pepitas (pumpkin seeds)

    Instructions

    1. In a small bowl, mix pumpkin, syrup, sugar, salt, vanilla, and spices. Add in the oats, coconut, and pepitas and stir until evenly mixed.

    2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (180C) and line a baking tray with parchment or non-stick liners. Spread the final mixture out onto your tray and place in the oven to bake for 45 minutes to an hour, stirring in 15 minutes intervals until crunchy and golden.
    3. Allow the granola to cool off completely then serve however you like to enjoy granola!

    4. Store in an air-tight container.

     

  • 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.

  • Breakfast,  Dairy Free,  Dessert,  Gluten Free,  Recipe,  Snacks,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    PB&J Granola Parfaits (Vegan+GF)

    Tell me if you can relate to this. I love to cook for people and I love to make huge, elaborate meals for big groups and I’ll spend hours in the kitchen. When I’m cooking for just me though, I’m not even willing to get a bowl out of the cabinet to put food in sometimes. I’ll literally just eat random stuff out of a box or grab something that requires zero prep.

    My roomies make fun of me and say I eat like a savage sometimes and they’re not wrong. Haha, I think years of food blogging has ruined my civilized kitchen habits. But again, the moment I have someone to cook for I get so excited to put in all the effort. It literally makes no sense.

    So for any of you OG followers that have been around for a good minute (you’re my favorite btw ;p ), you’ll know I was 17 and still living with my family when I started this blog. Obviously things have changed so much since then. I definitely miss having so many people around to eat all my extras and new creations. I mean, I still have plenty of friends and family willing to help when I offer, but it’s a little different than when they live with you.

    Anyway, I used to make parfaits for my brothers all the time. They loved them and it was a really good sneaky way to help use up all the scraps from whatever I was concocting at the moment. I personally love parfaits also, but, lol, rarely take the time to make them for myself. I recently shared a recipe for peanut butter granola though and made way too much in the testing process. Hence the need to make something creative with it.

    Enter these super simple “PB+J parfaits”! The peanut butter granola with the fresh berries and simple yogurt layer make these the perfect summer treat. Now if you’re wanting a truly peanut butter jelly time snack, definitely add in some spoons of creamy peanut butter also. I thought of that after the fact and wished I’d done it for the photos because it’s the ultimate finishing touch.

    Don’t forget to tell me in the comments if you can relate to being an absolute sloth when cooking for yourself while you love cooking for other people. šŸ˜‰

    PB&J Granola Parfaits (Vegan+GF)

    Parfaits make such a quick and easy breakfast or snack and these take only about 5 minutes.

    Prep Time 5 minutes
    Servings 4 servings

    Ingredients

    Berry Yogurt:

    • 1 cup fresh mixed berries
    • 2-4 tablespoons maple syrup (or sweetener of choice)
    • 2 cups plain unsweetened coconut yogurt you can use any plant-based yogurt here

    Parfaits:

    • 1 1/2 cups peanut butter granola Recipe in notes
    • 1 1/2 cups fresh mixed berries

    Instructions

    Berry Yogurt:

    1. In a blander or food processor, puree the berries and maple syrup. Pour mixture into a bowl and stir in the coconut yogurt.

    Parfaits:

    1. Layer the yogurt, granola, and berries in a jar or glass and serve.

     

  • Breakfast,  Dairy Free,  Recipe,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Cinnamon Oat Vegan Banana Bread Waffles (Gluten Free)

    Is there anything more beautiful than a huge plate of vegan banana bread waffles? Nothing is coming to mind so we’re just gonna go with no.

    This post is all about the best vegan banana bread waffles

    healthy banana waffles

    I have this problem where I always buy way too many bananas at once and they all ripen at the same time. I think a lot of people have the same problem which is probably how banana bread got invented. Before making these I had I thought about making banana bread but then realized I hadn’t used my Mini Waffle Maker in a long time.

    vegan banana oat waffles

    To be honest, it’s not the most convenient thing if you’re making waffles for more than one person because it takes foreeeeeeeever to make them all individually. But come on, they’re so cute though so it’s kinda worth it. If you actually want to get them done for a group then definitely use a normal sized waffle maker. I talk about how many you’ll get out of this recipe below.

    crispy banana waffles

    What? Vegan Banana Bread Waffles with Only 3 Ingredients??

    This recipe includes a few ingredients that you use tiny amounts of, but essentially it’s only 3 main ingredients. Basically it’s bananas and oats and plant-based milk with some extras. I love oats but I think we can all agree they can get a little boring from time to time. This is kind of a fun way to make them more interesting.

    healthy banana bread waffles

    These are honestly like the easiest thing to whip up and they are so good with any topping. In the photos I topped them with caramelized bananas and some vanilla coconut yogurt, but also love putting some nut butter on top and piling on some any fresh fruit. Let me know what you think if you try them!

    3 ingredient banana waffles veganOkay, let’s go over some FAQs for how to make Vegan Banana Bread Waffles:

    Can I use regular flour?

    Absolutely. I love making these with pastry flour actually. They turn out super light and fluffy. Maybe not quite as healthy but so, so delicious. If you use all purpose flour or pastry flour you won’t need the starch in the recipe. Also, it obviously won’t be gluten free.

    Can I make this recipe into pancakes?

    Yes! This recipe makes really great pancakes. Just use a non-stick griddle or grease any other type of frying pan with something like coconut oil. They are extra delicious with some nut butter on top.

    How many waffles does this recipe make?

    If you’re using a large Belgian waffle style maker you’ll probably only get about 4 but if you use a normal size waffle maker you should get about 8. And if you’re using what I used, a Mini Waffle Maker, you should get about 16. Now I honestly have no idea how many you’ll end up with if you use any of these crazy waffle makers but they all look fun.



    Cinnamon Oat Vegan Banana Bread Waffles (Gluten Free)

    This recipe is basically just a way more fun version of eating your morning oatmeal.

    Prep Time 5 minutes
    Cook Time 15 minutes
    Servings 4 servings

    Ingredients

    Waffles:

    • 2 cups quick or old-fashioned oats
    • 1 small-medium banana, very ripe
    • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
    • 1 /8 teaspoon salt
    • 1 teaspoon baking powder
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract optional
    • 2 teaspoons arrowroot starch you can sub tapioca or corn starch
    • 1/2 cup unsweetened plant-based milk (or water)

    Topping Ideas:

    • caramelized bananas
    • vanilla yogurt
    • cinnamon
    • maple syrup
    • nut butter!

    Instructions

    1. Combine oats, starch, salt, cinnamon, and baking powder in a blender or food processor and pulse until powdered. Add the banana, vanilla and milk and pulse until it's a smooth batter.

    2. Heat a waffle iron and spray lightly with cooking spray if the non-stick surface isn't very good. Cook waffles to your desired level of crispiness. I love crispy waffles but you can definitely make them soft. Also, be sure not to open the iron too soon or you'll rip the waffle.

    Recipe Notes

    Depending on the size of waffle iron this recipe will make about 8 large waffles or 16 miniature ones like the ones in the photos. You can get the Mini Waffle Maker here.

    This post was all about how to make the best vegan banana bread waffles

    Here are some other recipes you might also enjoy:

    Coconut Cream Chocolate Chip Waffles (Vegan)

    Chocolate Oat Pancakes (V+GF)

    Peanut Butter Banana Protein Pancakes

    The Best Vegan Banana Waffles

     

  • easy protein brownies.
    Dairy Free,  Dessert,  Recipe,  Snacks,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Fudgy Peanut Butter Vegan Protein Brownies

    Who says you can’t have dessert with benefits? These vegan protein brownies are decadent for sure but they’re also made with some extra health. Enjoy these for dessert, afternoon snack, or even an indulgent breakfast.

    healthy protein brownies.

    One of the absolute best questions to ask someone who eats plant-based/vegan is where they get their protein. I’m being a little sarcastic here but I also have some pretty smartass answers to this question that are pretty fun to deliver on the right occasion. My favorite; “I get my protein the same place your protein gets its protein and skip the middle-man.”

    This post is all about vegan protein brownies

    Fudgy Peanut Butter Vegan Protein Brownies.

    Hey, for the most part I avoid being the stereotypical preachy vegan and I actually understand all the questions because I had them myself. I love to be inspiration to people to try something new or healthier but I don’t ever like to preach (unless asked, because come on you asked for it. ;p ). Under common circumstances though, you do you.

    vegan protein brownies no banana.

    Okay, but for anyone who is overly concerned about getting in their protein you might be happy to know that you can buy vegan protein powders. Most of them taste as good, if not better, than dairy-based protein powders. I won’t deny that I’ve tried some that straight up taste like soggy grass but most of them are good.

    Best Peanut Butter Vegan Protein Brownies.

    If I haven’t already given you enough reason to think I’m strange, I have a confession. I love the taste of protein baked goods. I know most people think it’s chalky or bitter but, I don’t know, I like it.

    gooey protein brownies.

    So these brownies are admittedly a little OTT but sometimes I just get carries away and have to add another layer of something unnecessary. In this case it was some extra chocolate. You can obviously skip the extra layers and just make the brownies themselves…..but where’s the fun in that?

    vegan protein brownies recipe.


    Fudgy Peanut Butter Vegan Protein Brownies

    Who says you can't have dessert with benefits? These brownies are decadent for sure but they're also made with some extra protein.

    Prep Time 30 minutes
    Servings 16 brownies

    Ingredients

    Brownie Batter:

    Peanut Butter Icing:

    Chocolate Top Layer:

    Instructions

    Brownie Batter:

    1. Preheat oven to 350 degree F (177C) and lightly grease an 8x8 inch square pan and line with parchment. Stir together the sugar, melted coconut oil, milk, peanut butter, and vanilla until smooth. Add in the remaining ingredients and stir until batter is evenly mixed. Pour batter into pan and bake for 18 - 25 minutes until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Allow them to cool completely before the next step.

    Peanut Butter Icing:

    1. Stir together all the ingredients for the icing and spread onto cooled brownies. Place the pan in a fridge or freezer to chill for at least 15 minutes to allow the top to thicken enough to add the topping.

    Chocolate Layer:

    1. Melt the chocolate and peanut butter together in a double boiler over medium low heat until melted and smooth. Pour over brownies and gently spread evenly with a spatula. Place the brownies back in the fridge or freezer until the topping sets (about 20 minutes). Cut into bars and enjoy!


    Here are some other posts you may enjoy:

    Chocolate & Coconut Pumpkin Brownies

    Plant-Powered Oat Protein Bars (Vegan+GF)

    Chocolate Dipped Peanut Butter Protein Bars (Vegan+GF)


    easy protein brownies.

    This post was all about vegan protein brownies

  • 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! šŸ˜‰

    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.