Marinated Portobello & Broccoli Over Rice

Marinated Portobello and Broccoli

Marinated Portobello and Broccoli

Cooking vegan dinners can be so simple, and only a few ingredients are needed to have a well-rounded nutritious meal. A lot of people ask me “So what do you eat?” and there’s so much I do it that it takes a while to answer that question. I focus on all I can eat that is fueling my body instead of focusing on the things I’m not eating, and I’m not eating them for a reason so it’s not hard. I eat whole grains (brown rice, sprouted bread, tortillas, quinoa, whole grain or rice pasta, potatoes, etc.), vegetables, fruit, lentils, beans, dark chocolate, and so much more that I rarely eat the same thing in a month (as you see on my blog, because there are countless ways to incorporate these ingredients.) Pizza, sushi, tacos, buddha bowls, desserts, salads, soups, and so much more!

In this case, a healthy dinner can be made in a few minutes and it’s all you need to keep you satisfied. I made rice in my rice cooker with veggie stock and then marinated the portobellos, broccoli, zucchini, and tomatoes in balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, italian seasoning, pepper, vegan worcestershire, and minced garlic. That takes about 5 minutes to prepare, then you let it marinate for a few minutes and throw it into the oven to bake. I had some sliced apple with it and it’s so filling. Having these simple ideas for busy days will take the dread out of preparing a fancy meal.

For leftovers the next day, I added some leftover tofu to this mix and drizzled with oil free BBQ sauce.

Marinated Portobello and Broccoli Over Rice

3 portobello caps, cleaned and cut into a large dice

2 handfuls of grape tomatoes

2 crowns of broccoli, chopped

1 large zucchini, halved and sliced

2 tbsp low sodium soy sauce

3 tbsp balsamic vinegar

1 tbsp vegan worcestershire sauce

1 tbsp minced garlic

1 tsp italian seasoning

salt and pepper to taste

serve over brown rice

  1. Preheat oven to 400* and dice all of your veggies (except tomatoes) and place in a large bowl.
  2. Add all of the sauces and spices to the vegetables and toss to coat.
  3. Spread them on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 35-45 minutes until tender and broccoli is slightly crispy. Add the tomatoes onto the baking sheet for the last 15 minutes of cooking until they are soft and juicy.
  4. Serve over brown rice and enjoy the simplicity!

Balsamic Roasted Veggie Pasta

Roasted Veggie Pasta

Balsamic Roasted Veggie Pasta

Well you would think this would be a super easy throw together meal that would be really hard to mess up, right? Apparently I found a way to do that! I think this could have definitely been great with whole wheat pasta instead of using the brown rice and quinoa pasta that I used. When using brown rice pasta, it’s SUPER important to rinse it off really well after draining and to make sure you don’t overcook it or it gets mushy. Usually you don’t rinse pasta because the starch helps the pasta sauce stick to the noodle, so I didn’t rinse it off and it made it taste gummy. It thickened it and just had a layer of mush involved. I tried to cut the thickness with balsamic vinegar and veggie stock, yet it could only do so much. I will revive this dish by adding marinara sauce to it and it might be okay for leftovers. Next time I will use different noodles and add the nutritional yeast on top of mine instead in the sauce because Josh isn’t a fan.

Here’s the recipe if you want to give it a try. I’m going to write it as though I’m making it again and learning from my mistakes, so maybe you’ll have better luck!

Balsamic Roasted Veggie Pasta

1 lb whole wheat penne pasta

10 oz baby bella mushrooms, chopped

1 large zucchini, halved and sliced

1 yellow onion, halved and sliced

1 cup grape tomatoes, halved

1 bag baby spinach

2 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp italian seasoning

salt and pepper to taste

1/2 cup veggie stock

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

Nutritional yeast or red pepper flakes for topping

  1. Preheat oven to 400* and lay all veggies except tomatoes and spinach on a parchment lined baking dish and sprinkle with garlic powder, italian seasoning, salt and pepper, and a drizzle of balsamic.
  2. Bake for 30 minutes and then add in tomatoes to bake for another 10 minutes.
  3. While vegetables are roasting, boil pasta to al dente then stir in spinach while the noodles are still hot until all is wilted and set aside.
  4. Add roasted vegetables to pasta and then add vegetable stock, balsamic vinegar, and salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Combine and then serve with nutritional yeast or red pepper flakes, and one more drizzle of balsamic.

Vegan Singapore Noodles

I’ve ordered Singapore noodles a couple of times from Asian restaurants and have mixed feelings. I usually like thicker rice noodles and sometimes their amount of curry is off. It’s good if you can’t decide between curry or noodles, but it’s the canned yellow curry powder taste. I found a recipe on Pinterest for vegan Singapore noodles and tried it out tonight. I changed it up by not using cabbage, and using baby Bella mushrooms, red pepper, onion, scallion, carrots, and snow peas. I omitted the oil from the recipe and didn’t measure the sauce ingredients so I drizzled the noodles with soy, rice vinegar, garlic, curry powder, red pepper flakes, lime juice, and thinned it out with vegetable stock. I liked the right amount of flavor and spice, and being able to control the amount of curry powder with the veggies I prefer. You can add tofu or chickpeas if you want extra protein, but I enjoyed the veggie version.

I’ve made this mistake twice this week- when making rice noodles you HAVE to rinse them off really well or else they’ll be gummy and make the sauce thick and gooey. Nope. Not good. I made the mistake last night ( which I’ll post later, fail) and I can’t believe I put half of the pasta in the veggies without rinsing first. Next time I’d use regular vermicelli rice noodles or lo mein noodles instead of the brown rice spaghetti I used.

Original recipe – https://www.thecuriouschickpea.com/vegan-singapore-noodles/

Tofu and Veggie Scramble and Breakfast Potatoes

Tofu and Veggie Scramble and Breakfast Potatoes

Tofu and Veggie Scramble and Breakfast Potatoes

“Is that scrambled eggs?!” you ask. No! Can you believe that it’s crumbed tofu and it mimics the texture of scrambled eggs? It’s true, try and see!

This is a meal that I usually don’t think to make on weekends when I actually have time, so it’s a great breakfast for dinner meal. Who doesn’t love breakfast for dinner? It’s packed with protein, veggies, and you can have potatoes, toast, or fruit on the side. It’s a savory breakfast like an omelette, and if you miss eating eggs then this is the meal for you.

It’s all of the protein minus all of the cholesterol, because eggs are one of the highest cholesterol filled foods. The yolk is meant to give enough energy to grow a chick for 21 days, so consuming a few for breakfast is a lot of saturated fat. Also egg hatcheries kill male chicks that will not help their business, and they just drop them through a grinder at 1 day old. It’s a horrible business, so if you think tofu is gross, just think about that! The more I hear these horror stories the better I feel about eating a diet that doesn’t cause harm to anything because some people think “well it’s not meat, so it’s not hurting the animal.” They don’t know the processes in the factories and it’s horrific! I know people don’t like to read facts or see videos about that topic, but if it makes you feel so guilty or grossed out it’s probably for a reason.

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This only takes a few minutes to make and it’s really filling, plus you can use whatever vegetables you’d like. I’ve heard using black salt in this dish is common because it give it the sulfury flavor that eggs have, but I pass on that and just use a few other spices to give it the flavor I like.

Tofu and Veggie Scramble

1 16oz block extra firm organic tofu, drained and cubed

5 oz baby Bella mushrooms, diced

1 cup kale, chopped

5 oz asparagus, chopped

1/2 yellow onion, diced

handful of grape tomatoes, halved

1 tbsp garlic, minced

1 tsp turmeric

1/2 tsp paprika

salt and pepper to taste

3 tbsp nutritional yeast

  1. In a large skillet, saute onions, mushrooms, and asparagus until tender. ( 5-8 minutes)
  2. Add minced garlic and crumble tofu with your hands into the pan.
  3. Add kale and tomatoes then sprinkle with turmeric, paprika, salt, pepper, and nutritional yeast.

Breakfast Potatoes

1/2 yellow onion, diced

7-10 mini gold potatoes, diced small

sprinkle of garlic powder, salt, paprika, and pepper

  1. In a large skillet, saute onion and potatoes and add spices.
  2. Add 1/4 cup of water and cover so the potatoes cook though.
  3. When water is evaporated, sauté potatoes and onions until tender and serve with ketchup or your favorite sauce.

Empty the Fridge Buddha Bowl

Empty the Fridge Buddha Bowl

Empty the Fridge Buddha Bowl

After a week of cooking, there’s odds and ends of extra produce and I just want to make something to use everything up and not waste it. “Waste not, want not” as Granny used to say! This buddha bowl is the perfect way to use all of the food in your fridge and turn it into something delicious and with a drizzle of dressing on top it will all come together as one. You can use whatever you have left in your fridge to make your one version of a buddha bowl, but it’s usually some form of protein, starch, vegetables, and a sauce in one bowl. I love the combination of sweet potatoes, chickpeas, and green veggies with a maple mustard based dressing so as long as I have those things it’s pretty delicious. You just have to roast everything up in the oven and arrange it in a bowl and it’s a crowd pleaser.

Empty the Fridge Buddha Bowl

2-4 bowls

1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

sprinkle of garlic powder, onion powder, smoked paprika

two sweet potatoes, diced

1/2 lb of asparagus, chopped in 1” pieces

3 cups kale, chopped

3 small zucchini, halved and sliced

10 oz baby Bella mushrooms, halved

1-2 small avocados sliced

1 tbsp nutritional yeast

1 cup short grain brown rice

Maple Mustard BBQ Dressing

1/4 cup BBQ sauce

1 tsp dijon mustard

1 tsp yellow mustard

1 tsp maple syrup

Splash of coconut aminos

enough water to thin

1. Preheat oven to 400* and put sweet potatoes on one parchment lined baking sheet and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

2. On another baking sheet add chickpeas and sprinkle with garlic powder, onion powder and smoked paprika. Put both in the oven and roast for 45 minutes.

3. While those are cooking, dice other vegetables and once you take the potatoes out, you can add the asparagus, mushrooms, and zucchini to a parchment lined pan and roast for 15-20 minutes.

4. Take the chickpeas out and then use that pan to roast the kale for the last 5-7 minutes with nutritional yeast, salt and pepper.

5. Heat up rice in the microwave and then combine everything in a bowl and drizzle with bbq dressing.

Balsamic Portobello and Quinoa Wraps

Believe me. These were a lot better than they look! I couldn’t get a good picture without the wrap unraveling, but they were packed with so much goodness they just couldn’t stay put. I’ve never had a wrap with quinoa inside and it was really tasty. Did you know quinoa is a complete protein? I should use it a lot more than I should, especially because it’s as easy as boiling pasta and a lot better for you. You could add whatever grain or vegetable blend you’d like in these wraps and I’m sure they would still be a filling and simply delicious meal. I decided to use a burrito size whole wheat tortilla instead of using a pita because I thought it would be neater and easier to fill, but you can use whatever you’d like to use.

Balsamic Portobello and Quinoa Wraps

1 cup quinoa, 2 cups water

1 tsp Vegetarian Better than Bouillon Beef

3 Portobello caps, cleaned and sliced thin

1 yellow bell pepper, sliced

1 green bell pepper, sliced

1 yellow onion, halved and sliced

1 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp Italian seasoning

1 tsp Herbs de Provence

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

1 tbsp low sodium soy

1 tsp vegan Worcestershire sauce

Pepper to taste

Whole wheat tortillas, burrito size

Spring mix

1. Heat oven on 400* and add portobellos, peppers, and onions to a mixing bowl and mix with spices and soy, balsamic, and Worcestershire.

2. Add to a parchment lined pan and bake for 20-30 minutes until tender.

3. In a sauce pan, add quinoa and water and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and add bouillon and cook until water is absorbed, about 15 minutes.

4. Warm tortillas, I did in the toaster oven, and then add quinoa, vegetables, and spring mix lettuce to the wrap and roll up. Don’t overstuff or it will break.

Weekly Sushi Love

We’re used to weekly sushi because we used to go to our favorite sushi spot every weekend, but we got busy and it got too expensive for that extravagance. I’ve always wanted to make sushi, but it always worried me that the fish wouldn’t be fresh enough and I didn’t know where to buy it.

Since going vegan, veggie sushi sounded like a much more manageable option. Since making it for the first time a month or so ago, I’ve been making it weekly. I’ve made it for family, friends, and tonight was just to make Wednesday a little bit better. I had leftover nori, leftover veggies and mango in my fridge, and all I had to do was cook the rice and roll it up! If you have all of the ingredients prepped this is a healthy meal that feels fancy and comes together really quickly. I love practicing the craft of sushi rolling and trying different combinations to try and find the best. I bought a bamboo mat and rice paddle to feel professional but I’m pretty sure I don’t use them correctly… but it’s fun! I place a nori sheet shiny side down and spread my sticky brown rice on evenly with a rice paddle. I leave the far end empty to ensure enough space to close. I use a fork to mash a 1/4 of an avocado onto a strip of rice, then top with julienned cucumber, mango, carrot, or spring mix. Wet your finger and trace the far end of the nori, the roll tightly away from you and it will stick and close. Set aside to set before using a sharp serrated knife to slice. I use short grain brown rice from Whole Foods and cook it in my rice cooker, then combine each cup of brown rice with 2 tbsp of seasoned rice vinegar so it becomes stickier. This time I made 3 combinations. First I made avocado, cucumber, carrot, and spring mix. Second was avocado, cucumber and mango. Third was avocado, cucumber, mango, and spring mix. You can pretty much make whatever you think sounds good! I sprinkle with sesame seeds and serve with low sodium soy and grated ginger. The best part is it’s a fraction of the cost and you can eat it in your sweatpants. I love at home sushi!