This bowl is a family favorite! I love the tofu cutlets, and the BBQ makes it sooooo good! Feel free to use whatever veggies you have on hand. The great thing about a bowl is that there is no wrong way to make it! I love the Southwest flair this dish has, and it makes a perfect weeknight dish!
You can make the cilantro lime rice ahead of time, and it helps when you have several things cooking at once. I used a smoky-sweet Kansas City-style BBQ sauce, but again, it’s your preference! This dish would also be great with coleslaw instead of rice! You could also go Korean style with some Gochujang, black rice, and baked cauliflower! The possibilities are endless!
1 (15 oz) can Pinto beans, drained and rinsed well
1/2 cup vegetable stock
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp salt and pepper
1 head of organic broccoli
3 Tbsp water
Pinch of red pepper flakes
Pinch of sea salt
Place the soy sauce, olive oil, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, and Montreal Seasoning in a blender.
Blend at high speed for 30 seconds until thoroughly mixed.
Preheat oven to 350° F.
When tofu is pressed, pat dry and lay flat. Cut tofu in half widthwise. Cut each piece in half again, and repeat once more until you have eight rectangles.
Place tofu in a non-reactive, preferably glass pan or bowl with a lid. Add marinade and coat well.
Allow tofu to marinate for at least 30 minutes, (up to 4 hours).
While tofu is marinating, make your Rice. * (See note)
When rice is done, warm a medium-size skillet over medium-high heat. When the pan is warm, add 2 tsp of olive oil.
When oil is shimming, add tofu and any marinade that is left over. Pan sear tofu until browned on each side. About 2-3 minutes per side.
When browned, remove the tofu and add to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Brush one side of the tofu with BBQ sauce and bake for 3-4 minutes. Remove from oven, flip tofu, brush the other side. Return to oven for 3-4 more minutes.
While tofu is in the oven, in a medium-size saucepan, add drained and rinsed pinto beans, 1/2 tsp salt and pepper each, 1/2 cup vegetable stock, and 1 tsp of cumin. Cook over medium heat until warmed through.
While beans are simmering, add broccoli to the same skillet you used to cook the tofu. Do not clean the pan first. You want the brown bits on the bottom of the pan. Cook broccoli with 3 Tbsp of water, a pinch of red pepper flakes, and sea salt, over medium-high heat for 4-5 minutes until bright and lightly browned.
Remove tofu from the oven and lightly brush each side with more BBQ Sauce.
Assemble bowl, Rice first, Broccoli, Beans, and add Tofu to Rice. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
I love this rice dish! It’s super simple to make and goes with just about everything! My daughter loves the cilantro rice at Qdoba, so I decided to make a homemade version just for her! I prefer brown basmati for general use, but for this dish, I opted for white basmati. With a high protein content and very low GI ranking, brown basmati rice can be a healthy option if you use grains. I have not tried this with cauliflower rice, but I would imagine it would be an easy swap!
I like to toast my rice before boiling it. Toasting grains before cooking can enhance the nutty depth of the grains, lending an extra layer of flavor to a final dish! This dish pairs well with my BBQ Tofu Bowl!
Cacio E Pepe translates into cheese and pepper, and it is my two girls’ favorite pasta on earth. It is a fancy mac-n-cheese. The pure simplicity of this recipe makes it almost sinful to change, so I didn’t change much. I added red pepper flakes in place of the traditional black pepper and used vegan cheeses, of course. I liked the addition of the roasted tomatoes a lot. They are like little cherry bombs that explode in your mouth! The kicker for me was the fennel pollen. I have recently discovered this culinary rock star and plan to use it wisely since it is a little expensive, but the good news is that it goes a long way.
The key to this simple pasta is using just enough pasta water for cooking the pasta noodles. Too much water and you will lose all of your starch, not enough water, and you will have to add a little hot water to make the sauce. When the pasta is al dente, you will drain and save the pasta water, ensuring that you have about 2 1/2 cups. This water is what we will use to make the sauce. Add a little butter to the pan, add your pepper flakes, and sauté for 1-2 minutes. Then add the pasta water to the butter/pepper mix, and then add the pasta and cheese. Stir until the cheese, add pasta to the pan, and Boom! Dinner is served!
I used bucatini, but you can really use any type of pasta you want.
This recipe is an excellent substitution for Romano cheese. And it’s a lot cheaper than buying some of the pre-made vegan cheeses in the store. Not that I’m opposed to those cheeses. Some of them are great! It’s hard for me to find the ones that I prefer here locally, so I buy a favorite vegan parmesan through Thrive Market.
It can be stored in an air-tight container for up to 6 months in the refrigerator, too! The texture of this “cheese” is a lot like a grated romano cheese, and we always keep a jar of it on hand! It works well as a topping on pasta, popcorn, salads. You name it. I love it on top of my potatoes au gratin and use it in my Cacio E Pepe.
When I decided to write a burger recipe, I wanted to make sure that it was recipe-worthy. And when it comes to burgers, the best burger is a simple burger. I’m a sucker for onions and knew they would be a great addition. I started with a pack of Impossible Meat and some brioche buns. I sautéed red onion and red cabbage, which I seasoned with garlic and red pepper flakes!
I finished the burger by lightly toasting the brioche and slathering it with spicy mayo. It was divine. You can add slow roasted peppers, pickled vegetables, guacamole, or add coconut bacon. The truth is there is no wrong way to make a burger!
You can use whatever protein you want. Whether it’s made out of beets and quinoa, or a Beyond meat, follow these easy steps to build a better burger!
This is an easy step-by-step guide to building a delicious burger!
1 package of Impossible Meat or other plant-based burger
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
1/4 head red cabbage, shredded
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1/2 cup vegan mayonaise
Prep brioche by lightly brushing the inside of the buns with olive oil. Set aside.
Form burgers into the size patties you want, and season each side with salt and pepper.
Warm a medium-sized skillet over medium-low heat. When heated, add oil. When oil begins to shimmer, add onions to the pan. The key to caramelizing is cooking low and slow. When onions start to soften after 4-5 minutes, add cabbage, garlic, red pepper flakes, and salt. Cook until onions and cabbage have caramelized, about 8-10 minutes. Remove from the pan. Set aside.
In the same pan, increase heat to medium-high. When warmed, add burgers to the pan. Using a spatula, immediately begin to move the meat around in the pan. Moving them around helps the burgers form a crust and keeps them from sticking to the pan. Cook each side for about 3-4 minutes. If using vegan cheese, add it when you flip the burger.
If using cheese, turn heat to medium-low and cover the pan; this will help melt the cheese. Check after 2-3 minutes.
Place buns in toaster or oven and toast until lightly crisp. Add mayonnaise to the inside of both the top and bottom bun.
Using tongs, top burgers with onions and cabbage.
When brioche is toasted, add the burger and other toppings.
If you’ve been around me for a while, you know that I love Mexican food. It is hands down my greatest joy and my greatest weakness. We were in Colorado on vacation a few years ago, and we had Mexican food 9 out of 11 days! These enchiladas are an homage to my grandma, whose enchiladas were (next to her biscuits and gravy) my most favorite meal.
Grandma’s enchiladas were pretty basic—ground beef, diced onion, and tomato sauce with cheese. They were simple but divine. These are a little bit more complex but equally delicious. These are a staple in our house and one of my daughter’s favorite foods! I like to dice a little extra sweet onion and use it as a garnish and avocado, sour cream, and salsa. I’m getting hungry just thinking about them.
You can use a store-bought enchilada sauce if you’re in a hurry or don’t want to make it. But I have to warn you it will not be as good! I like to double it and then refrigerate the remainder. It’s good on tofu eggs, burritos, tacos, nachos, and of course, these enchiladas! I like the addition of the Impossible Meat because it reminds me of my Grandma’s recipe. You can easily skip it if you are avoiding plant-based meats. I would, however, add another can of beans. These enchiladas also freeze well. Just assemble them and then freeze. Enjoy!
If you make them, please tag me on Instagram and let me know how you like them!
3 tablespoons flour (I used brown rice flour for a GF sauce)
16 oz vegetable broth
1 (6oz) can tomato paste
3 Tbsp cilantro, finely chopped
3 Tbsp chili powder
1 Tbsp cumin
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp oregano
1 ½ tsp salt
½ tsp black pepper
pinch of cinnamon
1 lime juiced
Daiya Cheddar Cheese block, grated
Vegan Sour Cream
Preheat oven to 350° F.
In a small bowl, mix flour, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, smoked paprika, oregano, salt & pepper, and cinnamon.
In a medium saucepan over medium heat, bring 1/2 cup vegetable stock to a boil. Slowly, add dry spice and constantly whisk until the mixture is smooth and fragrant for about one minute. Add tomato paste and stir well until combined. Slowly add broth and whisk until smooth. Add lime juice and cilantro. Stir to combine. Remove from heat and set aside.
Warm a large skillet over medium heat. When warm, add onion and sauté until translucent—about 7 minutes. (If the onions begin to stick, add 2 tablespoons of water and stir).
Add garlic and jalapeño and cook until fragrant, 1-2 minutes.
Add plant-based meat if using: Cook for about 5 minutes or until lightly browned.
Add black beans and stir well to incorporate.
Add canned tomatoes, spices, and add 1/2 cup of enchilada sauce. Stir well and cook for 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat.
Wrap tortillas in a wet cloth or paper towel. Put on a microwave-safe plate and warm in the microwave for one minute. Keep tortillas wrapped while assembling.
Add ranchero sauce to a pie pan or other deep bottomed plate.
Add one cup of ranchero sauce to the bottom of a 9 x 12 pan, coating the pan evenly.
Remove one tortilla and dip it in the ranchero sauce. Place tortilla in 9 x 12 pan.
Add about 1/4-1/3 cup of filling (depending on your shells’ size, you may want to add more or less).
Add 2 tablespoons of Daiya cheese.
Carefully roll the tortilla and place seam side down.
Repeat with remaining tortillas if you run out of space using another pan. I fit 8 to a pan (6 side by side and then two end to end at the bottom of the pan). I used a smaller 8×8 pan to fit the rest. I covered them with wrap and froze them for later.
When you have finished assembling the enchiladas, pour the rest of the ranchero sauce over them and sprinkle with shredded cheese.
Cover with foil and bake for 25 minutes.
Carefully remove foil. Turn oven to broil and cook for 2 minutes or until cheese is bubbling. DO NOT WALK AWAY!
Remove from oven and serve with avocado, salsa, cilantro, and sour cream!
*I like Daiya block style cheddar and grate it myself. I NEVER use pre-shredded vegan cheese because they add an anti-caking ingredient that simply ruins the taste of the cheese.
**I used Impossible Meat because it has a great texture and flavor. You can also use Gardein beef crumbles, or Hungry Planet beef. You can also skip the meat if you’re not a fan of meat substitutes, but you may want to add an additional can of beans. I would add a can of pinto beans with my black beans for variety.
These freeze well. When I know I’m going to use them I remove them from the freezer and refrigerate overnight. Always be careful putting a frozen, or super cold glass pan in the oven. They can break.
It’s nice to be back in the kitchen! I’ve been super busy the last couple of weeks, and I am excited to be working on a few new recipes. Before I became a vegan, one of my favorite things to eat was fish at the local VFW hall on Fridays during the Lenten season. Though I’m not a Catholic, there are a few of their traditions that I really enjoyed! I tried using hearts of palm and other substitutes for fish. However, using banana blossoms has proved to be hands-down the best option! I like to add a bit of ground seaweed to the beer batter, which gives it a nice fishy flavor. I also love the minty mushy peas as a side! And last we cannot forget the chips! Large russet potatoes cut into thick batons and lightly fried make this girl super happy! 😋
Banana blossom, also known as a “banana heart,” is a fleshy, purple-skinned flower, shaped like a tear, which grows at the end of a banana fruit cluster. They are very flakey, making them a perfect substitute for fish. The family to whom banana belongs is called Musaceae as banana blossom, represent a valuable source of potassium, vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, minerals, fatty acid content, flavonoids, saponin, essential and non-essential amino acid, tannins, glycoside, and steroid. Banana flower is also a good antioxidant source.
There is a little bit of prep that needs to be done ahead of time. So be sure to read through the whole recipe first. You can make the peas and tartar sauce as early as much as a day ahead. This is a perfect meat-free meal that even your fish-eating friends will love! Enjoy!
There is some prep for this recipe. You will want to rinse the banana blossoms and get them in the freezer while you make the other ingredients. Make the peas and tartar sauce first. And then make potatoes and the fish last.
1 cup rice flour (used as pre-coat; can use regular flour if needed)
1 teaspoon kelp powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup beer (I used an IPA)
3/4 cup seltzer or sparkling water
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Malt vinegar, for serving
4 russet potatoes, sliced each into 8 wedges
1/4 cup olive oil
3 teaspoons garlic powder)
2 teaspoon onion powder
2 teaspoons salt, (adjust to your tastes)
1/2 teaspoon black cracked pepper
2 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley (garnish)
Vegan Tartar Sauce:
¼ cup (58 g) vegan mayo
1 tbsp (10 g) minced cornichons (small pickles)
2 tsp (20 g) caper, roughly chopped
1 tsp (5 ml) white vinegar
½ tsp dijon
1 tsp (2 g) fresh dill, chopped
Pinch salt and pepper
Mix all ingredients in a small bowl and refrigerate immediately.
Bring 6 cups of generously salted water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add the frozen peas and mint and cook for 4 minutes—Reserve 3 tablespoons of the hot cooking water. Drain the peas and mint and return to the pan. Immediately add butter, lemon zest, and cooking water—season with salt and pepper. Roughly mash the peas with a potato masher or food processor. Cover and set aside. You can use the peas in rough purée form, but if you want a very fine, smooth purée, push the mixture through a fine sieve. (I like to save about 1/4 cup of whole peas to add to puree).
Preheat oven to 400°. Wash the potatoes (I did not peel mine) with cold water to remove some of the surface dirt and dry well. Slice potatoes in half lengthwise, slice each half in half again and then slice each half in half again. You should have a total of 8 slices per potato. Blanch the potatoes in hot (not boiling) water for 10-12 minutes to release their starches. You can skip this step, but your potatoes will not be as crisp.
Drain potatoes, shaking well to remove excess water. Lightly pat them dry and add potatoes to a medium-size bowl. Add olive oil and toss well. Combine spices in a small bowl and sprinkle over potatoes. Toss well to coat. Place potatoes cut side down on a parchment-lined baking sheet or in an *air fryer. (Depending on the size of your pan, you may have to use two baking sheets. If so, rotate pans when you pull them to flip the potatoes at the halfway baking point, about 30 minutes)
Bake for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and, using a spatula, carefully flip the potatoes. Rotate pans if you used more than one.
Return to oven and bake for an additional 25-30 minutes. (You can reduce the oven to 200° and keep potatoes warm while fillets cook).
Sprinkle with parsley and serve hot.
Heat oil in a dutch oven or wok to 345° F. Turn oven down to 200° F. Whisk together flour, baking soda, kelp powder, and 1 teaspoon salt. Pour in the beer, sparkling water, and lemon juice and mix just until combined (do not over-mix). Keep the batter refrigerated until ready to use.
Drain the banana blossoms, then shape them into filets. Wrap the blossoms in clean kitchen towels and squeeze out all of the brine.
Cover and place in the freezer for 1 hour.
Remove from the freezer and sprinkle the blossoms with salt and pepper. Coat the blossoms in rice flour and then dip into the batter to completely coat. Carefully swish the blossoms partway into the oil for a few seconds before completely releasing. Once the coating starts to set on the first fillet, you can add another battered fillet into the oil. Fry until the blossom is puffed, golden brown, and cooked through, 5 minutes for thin fillets or 7 minutes for thick fillets, and then transfer to a paper towel-lined plate. Cook the remaining fillets and sprinkle with salt.
To serve, reheat the mushy peas if necessary. Serve the fish with chips, mushy peas, and malt vinegar on the side.
*If using air fryer bake at 390°F for 12-15 minutes. You will have to do this in batches so whey they’ve cooked you will need to place them in a low (200°F oven) to keep warm.
I have an obsession with tacos, and my love for them is deep. Before I became a vegan, my absolute favorite taco was a simple Carne Asada taco with cilantro and white onion. A traditional Asada is made with flank steak. But alas, with those meat-eating days behind me, I’ve searched long and hard for a reasonable substitute. Enter the mighty portobello mushroom.
Mushrooms work great in this Asada because they love to soak up the flavor of a marinade. And flavor they shall have! My first version of this recipe used a whole chipotle pepper that I minced and added to the marinade. As a girl who likes her food spicy, I have to say the heat overshadows the mushrooms’ delicious umami flavor. So I cut back on the heat and kept it simple. This recipe goes down as one of my all-time favorite taco recipes using fresh cilantro leaves, freshly squeezed orange and lime juice, cumin, and chili powder.
If you don’t like cilantro, no worries, you can use epazote, another aromatic herb with notes of oregano, anise, citrus, and mint. You can find it at most Hispanic grocery stores or, of course, on Amazon! You can use a steak portobello mushrooms or I just used some sliced Cremini mushrooms that I already had. I will make these again when the weather warms up and throw some marinated portobellos on the grill! Enjoy!
Yummy Mushroom Asada tacos! I used a pineapple jalapeño salsa as a topper and it was divine!
16 oz sliced portobello mushroom caps, or cremini mushrooms, stemmed and cleaned
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves, or epazote
1/3 cup olive oil
1/4 cup Tamari, or liquid aminos
Juice of 1 orange
Juice of 1 lime
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon oregano
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Whisk cilantro, orange juice, lime juice, aminos, olive oil, garlic, chili powder, cumin, oregano, salt, and pepper in a large bowl or shallow dish to combine.
Add the mushrooms and gently toss until they’re fully coated. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes to an hour. (These can be made up to 24 hours ahead). Give the mushrooms a good toss every 10 to 15 minutes.
With a slotted spoon, remove mushrooms and reserve 1 cup of the marinade.
Heat a cast-iron or other large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. When the pan is heated, add olive oil. Once the oil is shimmering, place the mushrooms in an even layer and cook, making sure not to touch them until most of the moisture has cooked out of them, about 10 minutes.
While the mushrooms are sautéing, warm the tortillas on a comal or other small non-stick skillet on the stovetop. Once tortillas are warmed and slightly browned, cover with a paper towel and place on a baking sheet in a low oven, or use the “warm hold” feature on the microwave.
When most of the moisture has evaporated, add 1/2 cup of the marinade and stir. Continue to cook and repeat with remaining marinade, stirring often for another 5 to 10 minutes. The mushrooms should be caramelized and slightly crisped around the edges.
Serve on warm tortillas and top with salsa, cilantro.
This dish is a perfect accompaniment to my Ropa Vieja, or it’s an easy meal served by itself! I used canned beans to make it a quick weeknight meal-It can be ready in 25 minutes or less! But if you have the time you can slow cook your beans for an extra layer of flavor.
Black beans are legumes. Also known as turtle beans because of their formidable, shell-like appearance, black beans are, in fact, the edible seeds of the plant. Black beans are rich in carbohydrates, and they are also an excellent source of fiber (both soluble and insoluble). Black beans also do not contain sugar. So depending on how they’re cooked, they can have a low glycemic index. Black beans are also protein powerhouses, with 7 grams of protein in a 1/2 cup serving!
If you want a little heat feel free to add a jalapeño, or your favorite hot sauce! I like to serve this with a long grain white rice. Enjoy!