All tagged Dinner

Summer Tomatoes Two Ways!

Local tomatoes from QuintaMKE (@quintaMKE) taste like sweet summertime! Roasted Tomato Couscous Salad pairs perfectly with big slices of heirloom tomatoes, dressed with olive oil and fresh basil.  Serve for lunch, a light dinner, or as a stunning addition to brunch with family and friends!

Serves: 4-6

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 15 minutes

What (your ingredients):

Couscous:

1 1/3 cup Israeli couscous

1 tablespoon olive oil

¼ teaspoon salt

1 1/3 cup boiling water

Roasted Cherry Tomatoes:

1 pint cherry tomatoes

Drizzle of olive oil

Pinch of salt

Pinch of dried thyme

Dressing for Roasted Tomato Couscous Salad:

2 tablespoons olive oil

½ teaspoon white wine vinegar

10 basil leaves, thinly sliced

Pinch of pepper

Fresh Heirloom Tomatoes:

2 heirloom tomatoes

Sprinkle of seasoned salt (Crazy Jane’s Mixed Up Salt or Garlic Salt)

Pepper to taste

5 basil leaves, thinly sliced

How (your directions):

Preheat oven to 400 °F.

Meanwhile, in a large pan, sauté couscous and olive oil for 3-5 minutes over medium heat, stirring constantly.

When couscous is toasted and slightly brown, add salt and boiling water.

Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 12 minutes.

Add cherry tomatoes to a baking sheet with a drizzle of olive oil, and a pinch of salt and dried thyme. 

Toss to combine, then roast for 10 minutes.

Once the couscous is finished cooking, turn the heat off, and add the roasted cherry tomatoes (and juices from roasted tomatoes!).

Add the couscous dressing ingredients (olive oil, vinegar, basil leaves, pepper) and stir to combine.  Set aside.

Slice the heirloom tomatoes into large slices and place onto a large platter.

Season with salt and pepper to taste, drizzle with olive oil, and top with fresh basil.

Pour the Roasted Tomato Couscous to the platter next to the fresh heirloom tomato slices.

Enjoy warm, room temperature, or cold!

Why (the science):  Roasted tomatoes are high in lycopene, which helps reduce the risk of prostate cancer.

5-Ingredient Creamy Broccoli Soup (Vegan, GF)

This 5-Ingredient Creamy Broccoli Soup comes together in less than 30 minutes and couldn’t be easier to make!  It has a silky-smooth texture, made creamy from the red potatoes, and is the perfect meal prep recipe.  5-Minute Creamy Broccoli Soup is nutritious, freezer-friendly, and perfect for lunch or a light dinner.

Serves: 6

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 15 minutes

What (your ingredients):

1 tablespoons olive oil

1 yellow onion, diced

½ teaspoon salt

5 medium red potatoes, diced

6 cups veggie broth

8 cups broccoli florets

To serve: freshly cracked pepper

How (your directions):

In a large Dutch oven or soup pot, heat olive oil over medium heat.

Add diced yellow onion and salt.  Sauté for about 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until onion is translucent.

Add red potatoes, veggie broth, and broccoli.

Bring to a boil, then cover, turn heat to low, and simmer for 10 minutes.

Turn off heat.  Using an immersion blender, blend soup until smooth and creamy.

If you don’t have an immersion blender, transfer soup carefully to a blender and blend until smooth.

Enjoy hot with freshly cracked pepper!

Why (the science):  Broccoli is a cruciferous veggie, meaning it has powerful anticancer effects!

Strawberry Quinoa Salad with Fresh Mint and Creamy Goat Cheese | GF |

Who doesn’t want to make a recipe in under 30 minutes that can last all week in the fridge, and be enjoyed at any meal, be that breakfast or dinner!  This Strawberry Quinoa Salad with Fresh Mint and Creamy Goat Cheese is rich in antioxidants, as well as protein to keep you full and satisfied.  Make once, enjoy all week!  The perfect simple meal prep recipe 😊

Serves: 6

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes

What (your ingredients):

1 cup quinoa

2 cups water

3 tablespoons orange juice (juice from 1 blood orange)

1 ½ tablespoons olive oil

1/8 teaspoon salt

1 lb. strawberries

20 fresh mint leaves

2 oz. goat cheese

Walnuts to serve

How (your directions):

Add 1 cup quinoa and 2 cups water to a large sauté pan.  Bring to a boil, then cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, create an easy vinaigrette by adding orange juice, olive oil, and salt to a large bowl.  Whisk and set aside.

Slice strawberries and chiffonade the mint.  Add to bowl with the vinaigrette.

When the quinoa has cooked for 15 minutes, turn off the heat, but leave the quinoa in the covered pan for 5 minutes.

Fluff the quinoa with a fork, then add to the bowl.  Stir to combine.

Place in refrigerator for a few minutes to cool.  Once cooled, crumble the goat cheese into the quinoa salad.

Serve room temperature or cold, and top with walnuts.

Enjoy for lunch or dinner (or even breakfast!) throughout the week.

Why (the science):  Mint and other herbs are high in antioxidants, which helps reduce inflammation and boost your immune system, which helps you feel better in general!

Mushroom and Artichoke Pulled BBQ

Eating your vegetables has never been so easy!  Make pulled BBQ at home in 25 minutes using only a few easy, whole food ingredients.  Mushroom and Artichoke BBQ would be a delicious plant-based option at your outdoor picnic and summer BBQ parties 😊

Serves: 4

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes

What (your ingredients):

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 medium yellow onion, sliced

2 cloves garlic, minced

8 oz. white or baby bella mushrooms, diced

2 15-oz. cans baby artichokes in water, drained and diced

1 ¼ cup favorite BBQ sauce

Assembly: toasted whole wheat buns, coleslaw

How (your directions):

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add sliced onions and sauté for 3-4 minutes.

Add garlic, mushrooms, and diced artichokes.  Sauté for 5-7 minutes until golden brown.

Add favorite BBQ sauce and allow to simmer for 10-15 minutes, stirring only occasionally to allow for caramelization.

Serve immediately on a warm, toasted whole wheat bun with ¼ cup of coleslaw!

Why (the science):  Mushrooms are a rich source of selenium and glutathione, antioxidants that lower inflammation in the body.

Easiest Vegan Chili

Easiest Vegan Chili is so easy and quick, you can make it on a weekday in 30 minutes!  It requires 5-8 minutes of hands on dicing or stirring, but the rest of the cooking time is leaving the chili to simmer.  Leftovers are wonderful, so this Vegan Chili also makes a nutritious meal prep recipe for lunches or dinners.  Store it in the fridge in an airtight container for 4 days.

Serves: 4-6

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 25 minutes

What (your ingredients):

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 yellow onion, diced

½ teaspoon salt

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 teaspoon cumin

½ teaspoon paprika

1 tablespoon tomato paste

24-oz. can diced tomatoes

2 15-oz. cans black beans, drained and rinsed

1 15-oz. can white beans, drained and rinsed

1 cup water

How (your directions):

Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large Dutch oven.

Add yellow onion and salt, and cook until translucent, about 2 minutes.  Add the garlic and sauté for 30 seconds.

Add chili powder, cumin, paprika, and tomato paste.  Sauté for 1 minute.

Add black beans, white beans, and water.  Bring to a low boil, then cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 20 minutes.

Serve immediately with your favorite chili toppings!

Why (the science):  Beans are an excellent source of protein and fiber to keep you full and satisfied, while garlic and onion have antibacterial and antimicrobial properties to boost your immune system.

Apple, Brie & Arugula Open Sandwich

We all need a meal up our sleeves that takes 5 minutes to throw together (but doesn’t look like we did).  I make this Apple, Brie & Arugula Open Sandwich for lunches or dinners when I’m in a pinch.  But even if I had all the time in the world to cook, this would still be a classic worth coming back too 😊

Serves: 1

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 0 minutes

What (your ingredients):

2 slices artisan bread (I use a seeded multigrain)

1 ounce brie

1 handful arugula

½ apple

1 teaspoon good olive oil

Salt and pepper

How (your directions):

Lightly toast the slices of bread.

While the bread is toasting, slice the ½ apple into thin slices.

When bread is done toasting, spread brie cheese onto each slice.  Top with arugula and slices of apples.

Drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Voila!

Why (the science):  This sandwich might be the easiest way to eat your fruits and vegetables 😊

Red Lentil Stew

Red Lentil Stew is the ultimate cozy comfort food that is incredible for your immune system- between the garlic, ginger, leek, and lemon, Red Lentil Stew has several health boosting vitamins and antimicrobial properties!  It also makes a great meal prep recipe, as it stores well in the fridge for 3-4 days.  Inspired by my favorite food blogger’s (Sarah Britton’s) Four Corners Soup, this Red Lentil Stew is something to look forward to after a long day’s work 😊

Serves: 4-6

Prep time: 5-10 minutes

Cooking time: 40 minutes

What (your ingredients):

1 tablespoon coconut oil

1 leek, sliced into half-moons and rinsed

Pinch of salt

5 garlic cloves, minced

1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced

1 tablespoon cumin

¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 28-oz can crushed tomatoes

1 cup red lentils, rinsed

3 cups veggie broth

½ lemon, sliced into thin rounds

1 tablespoon maple syrup

4 cups spinach

To serve: slices of avocado or grated parmesan cheese and good olive oil

How (your directions):

Heat a large soup pot or Dutch oven over medium heat.  Add coconut oil, sliced leek, and pinch of salt to the pot and sauté for 3-4 minutes.

Add minced garlic, ginger, cumin, and cayenne pepper, sautéing for 1 minute.

Add crushed tomatoes, lentils, veggie broth, and lemon slices to the leek mixture.  Bring to a boil, then cover, lower heat to low, and simmer for 30-40 minutes until lentils reach desired texture.

Add maple syrup and taste for seasoning.  With the heat turned off, stir spinach into stew until wilted.

Serve hot with either sliced avocado, or a grating of parmesan cheese and drizzle of good olive oil.

Why (the science):  Lentils are a plant-based protein powerhouse, with 20 grams of protein per 1 cup!  That’s equivalent to about 3 oz of chicken breast.

10-Minute Healthy Stir Fry | Vegan and GF |

If you’re short on time, this 10-Minute Healthy Stir Fry is the perfect thing to enjoy on a hectic weeknight.  Simply boil brown rice ramen noodles, slice up whatever veggies you have on hand, and whip up the delicious and incredibly easy Ginger Almond Stir Fry Sauce!  Plant-based and fiber-rich with a creamy sauce, my 10-Minute Healthy Stir Fry is a nutritious time-saver.

Serves: 2

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 5 minutes

What (your ingredients):

2 squares brown rice ramen noodles

1/8 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon sesame oil

8 oz. package mushrooms, sliced thinly

6 oz. package snap peas

1 yellow pepper, sliced thinly

Ginger Almond Stir Fry Sauce:

1 tablespoon arrowroot starch or corn starch

1 tablespoon almond butter

1 tablespoon coconut aminos or soy sauce

1 teaspoon maple syrup

½ teaspoon ground ginger

¼ cup water

How (your directions):

Fill a large pot with water and bring to a boil.  Once water is boiling, add salt and ramen squares.  Cook according to package instructions, about 4 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat sesame oil in a wok over high heat.  Add mushrooms, snap peas, and yellow pepper.  Cook on high for 3 minutes.

Once noodles are finished cooking, drain and rinse.  Set aside.

Add all sauce ingredients to a bowl and whisk with a fork.  Add sauce and noodle to vegetable mixture and stir to combine for 30-60 seconds.

Serve immediately!  Salt and pepper to taste.

Why (the science):  Mushrooms are high in antioxidants, specifically selenium and glutathione, which lower inflammation and reduce cell damage.

Hemp, Avocado, and Tomato Salad (For One!)

This salad is so yummy and refreshing, and full of heart healthy fats to keep you full!  And it only takes 5 minutes and 7 easily accessible ingredients to quickly slice, assemble, and drizzle 😊

Serves: 1

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 0 minutes

What (your ingredients):

2 cups butter lettuce and radicchio (I use a prewashed mix from Trader Joe’s)

10 cherry tomatoes

½ small ripe avocado

1 tablespoon hemp seeds

1 tablespoon aged balsamic vinegar (the older, the sweeter)

1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil

Pinch of Crazy Jane’s Mixed Up Salt (or any seasoned salt- this one is a blend of garlic, onion, salt, and spices)

How (your directions):

Onto a large plate, place the 2 cups of butter lettuce and radicchio blend.

Slice cherry tomatoes in half lengthwise, then distribute evenly on top of the lettuce.

Slice a small, ripe avocado in half.  Using the half without the pit (save the half with the pit, covered, in the fridge for another time), remove the skin.  Place halved avocado cut-side down onto cutting board, then slice thinly.  Fan the avocado slices and place in the center of the salad.

Sprinkle hemps seeds over the salad, then drizzle with balsamic vinegar and olive oil.  Season to taste with a pinch of salt or seasoned salt.

Enjoy immediately!

Why (the science):  Hemp seeds are a rich source of heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids.  You can sprinkle hemp seeds on savory dishes (from salads to pastas to soups) and sweet dishes (top a smoothie or bowl of oatmeal for added crunch).

 

 

Sweet and Spicy Carrot Ginger Soup

This luxuriously smooth Sweet and Spicy Carrot Ginger Soup is everything I want in a soup- incredible depth of flavor, bursting with nutrition, comforting.  I once had a soup at a restaurant like this, and fell in love with the sweetness of the soup that was also somewhat savory.  I hadn’t been able to recreate that balance of sweet and savory…until NOW!  This recipe is easy, quick, and can be made in advance.  Great meal prep option that lasts 3 days in the fridge 😊

Serves: 4-6

Prep time: 5 minutes (30 minutes soaking cashews)

Cooking time: 20 minutes

What (your ingredients):

1 tablespoon olive oil

¼ red onion, chopped roughly

1 lb. carrots, chopped roughly

1 Gala apple, chopped roughly

½ granny smith apple, chopped roughly

Pinch of salt

1 garlic clove, minced

1 thumb size knob ginger, peeled and sliced

¼ teaspoon cinnamon

Dash of cayenne pepper

4 cups vegetable broth

To serve: Greek style almond yogurt, maple syrup, granola

How (your directions):

In a large Dutch oven over medium heat, heat olive oil.  Add red onion, carrots, Gala and Granny Smith apples, and a pinch of salt.  Saute for 3-4 minutes.

Add garlic, ginger, cinnamon, and a dash of cayenne pepper.  Sauté for 1-2 minutes.

Add vegetable broth and bring to a boil.  Cover, lower heat to low, and simmer for 20 minutes, or until the carrots are fork tender.

Transfer mixture to a high-speed blender, and blend until smooth (start blender on low speed and gradually increase speed to medium-high.  Always hold the lid of the blender secure and be careful of steam).

Enjoy hot!

Serve with a swirl or dollop of almond yogurt, a drizzle of maple syrup, and a spoonful of granola.

Why (the science):  Ginger is a powerful anti-inflammatory

 

Cauliflower Chickpea Curry

When I think curry, I think anti-inflammatory, filling, comforting, scrumptious- and you’ll love this Cauliflower Chickpea version for all of those reasons.  Don’t be afraid of the list of ingredients, because you probably have most of them in your pantry already.  I like reserving a few spoonsful of the coconut cream from the top of the can of coconut milk, then dolloping on top of the hot curry and brown rice.  Or even better, a drizzle of protein-packed tahini adds creaminess and richness.  Yum!

Serves: 6

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 40 minutes

What (your ingredients):

1 tablespoon olive oil

½ red onion, diced finely

¼ teaspoon salt

Pinch of pepper

3 cloves garlic, minced or sliced finely

1 teaspoon coconut oil

1 tablespoon curry powder

1 teaspoon turmeric

1 teaspoon paprika

1-2 dashes cayenne pepper (optional)

1 tablespoon tomato paste

1 yellow pepper, diced

1 head of cauliflower, chopped or sliced into small florets

1 cup vegetable broth

1 28-oz can diced tomatoes (San Marzano is best!)

1 15-oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

1 15-oz can full fat coconut milk

How (your directions):

In a large Dutch oven or large Wok, heat olive oil over medium heat.  Add diced red onion, salt, and pepper, sautéing for about 3 minutes, until translucent. 

Add garlic and sauté for 30 seconds.  Push onion and garlic mixture to one side of the Dutch oven or Wok, then add the coconut oil to the pan to melt.  Add curry, turmeric, paprika, and cayenne pepper (optional) to the oil to release the fragrance of the spices and toast slightly. 

Add tomato paste, yellow pepper, cauliflower, broth, diced tomatoes, chickpeas, and coconut milk (reserving a little coconut cream if desired for serving) and stir to combine.

Simmer on medium-low heat for 30-40 minutes.

Serve with brown rice and a drizzle of tahini.  Salt and pepper to taste and enjoy hot!

Why (the science):  Curcumin from turmeric may help prevent cognitive decline!  Check out this guide to boosting brain health here: https://onmilwaukee.com/living/articles/milwaukeean-brain-health.html

Raw Vegan Pad Thai

This might be one of my absolute favorite ways to eat vegetables!  The Miso Pad Thai sauce alone is worth making- drizzle over greens or roasted vegetables- yum! Perfect for hot weather, this Raw Vegan Pad Thai will satisfy you for lunch or dinner while making you feel light and energized. 

Serves: 2

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 0 minutes

What (your ingredients):

Miso Pad Thai Sauce:

1 tsp ginger

1 tsp coconut aminos or soy sauce

1 tsp miso paste

¼ cup almond butter

3 medjool dates

Juice of ½ lemon

1 clove garlic

¼ cup warm water

Pad Thai:

2 large carrots

1 red bell pepper

2 medium zucchini, julienned

2 small English cucumbers, julienned

1 spring onion, sliced thinly

Toppings: sesame seeds, alfalfa sprouts, pinch of salt

How (your directions):

For the Miso Pad Thai Sauce, add all ingredients to a high-speed blender.  Blend on high for 1 minute until smooth.  Set aside while you prepare the Pad Thai ingredients.

Grate 2 large carrots and add to a large bowl.  Thinly slice 1 red bell pepper and add to the carrots. 

Using a vegetable peeler, julienne 2 zucchini.  When it becomes difficult to julienne the zucchini, dice the remaining zucchini into small pieces.   Add zucchini to the bowl.  

Repeat the julienne process with 2 English cucumbers.  Add cucumbers to the bowl.

Thinly slice 1 spring onion and add to the bowl. 

Pour the Miso Pad Thai Sauce over the prepared vegetables.  Toss gently until all ingredients are evenly coated in the sauce.

Serve immediately by diving the Pad Thai salad onto two plates.  Top with sesame seeds, alfalfa sprouts, and a pinch of salt. 

Tip: if preparing the Raw Vegan Pad Thai in advance, do not add the dressing, as the salt will pull out the water from the vegetables and make the salad soupy and watery.  Dress salad with the Miso Pad Thai Sauce when ready to serve.

Enjoy!

Why (the science):  Every vegetable has a different combination of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, so you’ll benefit from the array of colors in this salad!

Cheesy Mexican Squash Casserole

Perfect for summer entertaining, Cheesy Mexican Squash Casserole serves 4-6 as a main course, or 8 as a side dish.  You can make this casserole in advance, then bake in oven right before serving.  The Cheesy Vegan Sauce is scrumptious, and your non-vegetarian friends will never know that there’s no cheese 😉

Serves: 6

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 40 minutes

What (your ingredients):

Vegan Cheese Sauce:

1 yellow onion, quartered

10 mini sweet peppers

¼ cup raw cashews

½ cup nutritional yeast

¼ cup water

½ teaspoon salt

Squash Casserole:

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 shallot, sliced thinly

3 cloves garlic, sliced thinly

Pinch of salt

½ teaspoon cumin

½ teaspoon chili powder

1 large yellow squash, sliced into half-moons

2 cups sweet corn

1 15-oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed

1 15-oz. can pinto beans, drained and rinsed

2 cups cooked brown rice

Parsley or cilantro for serving

How (your directions):

Preheat oven to 350°F. 

Make Vegan Cheesy Sauce by adding all ingredients to a high-speed blender.  Blend on high for 60 seconds until smooth.

In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat.  Add shallots and sauté for 1-2 minutes.  add garlic and a pinch of salt, sautéing for 30 seconds.

Add cumin and chili powder to the oil. Hint: This allows the spices to “bloom” and become fragrant.

Add sliced squash and sauté for 5 minutes.  add corn, black beans, pinto beans, stirring for 2 minutes until warmed through.

Add rice and Vegan Cheesy Sauce and stir to combine.

Pour casserole mixture into a 2-qt. baking dish.

Bake for 25 minutes.

Garnish with snipped parsley or cilantro.  Salt and pepper to taste.

Enjoy hot! 

Why (the science):  Dairy can be inflammatory in the body, causing bloating, gas, acne, and many other symptoms.  This Vegan Cheesy Sauce incorporates vitamin C rich peppers and anti-inflammatory onion!  The nutritional yeast provides B12 and that signature cheesy flavor. 

Crunchy Curry Salad with Farro

Crunchy Curry Salad with Farro is filling salad, heart enough to be a meal on its own, but light and crunchy and crisp.  Refreshing for a hot, summer day!

Serves: 4-6

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes

What (your ingredients):

½ cup farro

¼ teaspoon curry powder

¼ teaspoon cumin

¼ teaspoon paprika

Juice of 1 lime

Juice of 1 lemon

1 head of kale

5-7 radishes

½ large seedless cucumber

1 orange bell pepper

1 shallot

How (your directions):

Heat 5 cups of water in a large pot with 2 teaspoons salt.  Once boiling, add the farro and cook for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, to a large bowl, add curry powder, cumin, paprika, lime juice, and lemon juice.  Stir to combine.

Finely chop kale and add to the bowl with spices.  Massage 2 minutes to soften kale.

Dice radishes, cucumber, and bell pepper and add to kale. 

Mince 1 shallot and add to kale salad.

Once farro is cooked, drain farro, then add to kale salad.  Mix to combine.

Enjoy immediately or store in refrigerator for the next day’s lunch or dinner!

Why (the science):  Spices have anti-inflammatory powers, so combine spices to flavor your meals in replace of adding salt.  If the salad needs salt, add a pinch, but you won’t need a lot with the flavors of curry and cumin 😊 

Kale and Quinoa Salad with Fig and Walnuts

Full disclosure: I’m always intimidated to make salads, because I worry that they won’t be near as good as what I can order from a nice restaurant.  But THIS is the recipe that changes everything! Easy? Check! Café-quality? Check! Elegant but fast to throw together? Check! Kale and Quinoa Salad with Fig and Walnuts will be your go-to “I’ll bring the salad” dish to show off to all your friends 😊

Serves: 1

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 0 minutes

What (your ingredients):

1 bunch kale, torn into pieces

1 tablespoon pomegranate balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons walnut pieces

2 dried figs, cut into small pieces

1 oz. goat cheese

1/3 cup quinoa, cooked

How (your directions):

Place kale pieces into a large bowl.  Drizzle with balsamic vinegar and olive oil.  Massage the kale for 2-3 minutes.  Tip: Massaging kale allows it to become more tender and slightly sweeter!

Transfer salad to a plate, then top with walnuts, figs, crumbled goat cheese, and quinoa.

Enjoy immediately or the next day!

Why (the science):  Quinoa is a complete protein, making it a great replacement for brown rice and other starches!

Pasta Primavera

Pasta Primavera is a smart dish to encourage more vegetable intake, without feeling like you’re eating a bunch of vegetables😉 It’s a scrumptious sauce with lots and lots of fresh veggies, and I encourage you to use whatever you may have on hand.  Lentil pasta and cannellini beans up the protein significantly.  I serve this Pasta Primavera over fresh zucchini noodles to add even more vegetables and bulk to my pasta portion.

Serves: 4-6

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 10 minutes

What (your ingredients):

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 red onion, finely diced

1 orange bell pepper, diced

1 head broccolette, diced

¼ teaspoon Italian seasoning

Pinch of paprika

Pinch of salt

2 handfuls kale, chopped

1 15-oz. can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed

1 jar marinara sauce (I used a rich tomato sauce with Barolo wine)

12 oz. lentil Sedanini pasta (or any short pasta shape)

3 zucchini, spiralized

How (your directions):

In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat.  Add red onion, bell pepper, broccolette, Italian seasoning, paprika, and salt.  Stir and sauté for 5 minutes.

Add chopped kale and sauté for 2 minutes.

Stir in cannellini beans and marinara sauce.  Heat through while pasta cooks, about 5-6 minutes.

Drain pasta and add to primavera sauce.

In each pasta bowl, place several curls of spiralized zucchini.  Ladle pasta and primavera sauce over fresh zucchini noodles.

Enjoy!

Why (the science):  Lentil pasta is high in protein (13 grams protein per serving!) which makes it a nutritious way to enjoy pasta and reach satiety sooner than you would with a white pasta.

 

Anti-inflammatory Curry

When I’m feeling the aches of the flu or a bad cold, I crave a meal that can fight the inflammation in my body.  This Anti-Inflammatory Curry is quick and easy enough to make when you’re sick (yes, I know from experience) but is light and easy on the stomach, since it’s not spicy.  So often curries are heavy and fatty, but this curry is more like a broth.  Pairs perfectly with a side of brown rice!

Serves: 4

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 30 minutes

What (your ingredients):

1 teaspoon coconut oil

2 bell peppers, medium diced

1 block extra-firm tofu, cubed

1 head broccoli, cut into florets

2 large carrots, diced

1 teaspoon fresh ginger, minced

2 tablespoons red curry paste

1 15-oz. can coconut milk

Brown rice to serve

How (your directions):

In a large skillet, heat coconut oil over medium heat.  Add bell peppers and tofu, then sauté for 5 minutes.

Add broccoli florets, diced carrots, and minced ginger.  Sauté for 5 minutes.

Add red curry paste and coconut milk and stir to combine.  Bring to a simmer, then cover and cook on low heat for 20 minutes.

Serve over brown rice, and salt to taste.

Enjoy!

Why (the science):  Curries make powerful anti-inflammatory meals because they so often include foods to reduce oxidative stress in the body.  Coconut oil, broccoli, turmeric, and ginger are all found in this recipe, which means this curry battles oxidation and inflammation in a variety of ways.

Pear and Gorgonzola Salad with Dijon Vinaigrette

There’s a reason pear and blue cheese salads are a classic- these salads are rich flavor while incredibly easy to make.  In fact, in 5 minutes (or less, if you are a quick pear slicer!), you can create this Pear and Gorgonzola Salad with Dijon Vinaigrette.  This special salad is rich in heart-healthy omega-3’s and antioxidants.  Of course, the recipe can be extended for however many family members or guests you may be entertaining.  An elegant dish that any salad-hater will love 😊

Serves: 1

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 0 minutes

What (your ingredients):

Dijon Vinaigrette

¼ cup apple cider vinegar

Pinch of salt and pepper

½ cup olive oil

Pear and Gorgonzola Salad

2 handfuls spinach

½ ounce walnuts

½ pear, sliced paper thin

1-inch cube gorgonzola blue cheese, crumbled

Drizzle of Dijon Vinaigrette

How (your directions):

Prepare the Dijon Vinaigrette by whisking all ingredients together.  Vinaigrette can be stored in an airtight jar in the refrigerator for future use.

To prepare salad, place a few handfuls of spinach onto a plate.  Then place sliced pears onto spinach a drizzle with Dijon Vinaigrette.

Sprinkle salad with walnut pieces and gorgonzola crumbles.

Enjoy immediately!

Why (the science):  Pears are rich in flavanols, which have been shown to play an important role in improving insulin sensitivity (which means your insulin is more controlled)!

Cauliflower Alfredo with Peas

I served this “alfredo” to my husband without revealing the true ingredients of the sauce and he believed it was real (parmesan and cream laden) alfredo!  No sir, just a humble cauliflower cooked until tender and blended with garlic and onion powder 😊  Husbands and kids will be tricked alike with this wonderfully easy alfredo pasta!  A drizzle of good olive oil gilds the lily.

Serves: 4

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes

What (your ingredients):

I head cauliflower, roughly chopped

½ teaspoon garlic powder

½ teaspoon onion powder

½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes

4 oz. capellini pasta

¾ cup frozen peas

How (your directions):

Place cauliflower pieces into a large saucepan or pot and cover with water.  Bring to boil and cook for about 12 minutes, until the cauliflower is fork tender.  Tip: the cauliflower must be fork tender instead of al dente, so that it turns into a creamy sauce.

Meanwhile, boil salted water for pasta.

Ladle tender cauliflower into a high-speed mixer with about ¾ cup- 1 cup of cooking water.  Add garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and red pepper flakes.  Blend until smooth, about 30 seconds.

Add cauliflower alfredo to dried pan and heat on low.

Cook capellini in boiling salted water for 3 minutes.  Strain cooked pasta and add to cauliflower alfredo.  Mix to evenly distribute sauce.

Add frozen peas to pasta, cover with lid, and heat on low for 10-12 minutes.

Serve immediately with a drizzle of good extra virgin olive oil.

Enjoy!

Why (the science):  Cauliflower is a cruciferous vegetable, which means it provides powerful anticarcinogenic nutrients for our bodies.  What an incredibly versatile veggie, that it can pass as rice, pizza crust, and now alfredo sauce 😊