All tagged Olive Oil

Creamy Mushroom Soup (Vegan, GF)

Creamy Mushroom Soup tastes like pure comfort food but is loaded with veggies and has no cream or half-and-half!  It’s as easy as cooking onion, mushrooms, and potatoes in broth and blending until smooth with nondairy milk.  The chanterelle mushrooms from @MushroomMikeLLC add both elegance and a peppery, earthy flavor. 

Serves: 4-6

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 25 minutes

What (your ingredients):

1 tablespoon avocado oil

½ yellow onion, diced

Pinch of salt

28 oz. white mushrooms, diced

1/8 teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon dried thyme

¼ cup dry white wine

3 russet potatoes, diced

3 cups vegetable broth

1 cup unsweetened nondairy milk (I used Ripple)

10 chanterelle mushrooms, roughly chopped

2 teaspoons butter (vegan)

Pinch of salt

Freshly ground pepper to taste

Optional: Drizzle of olive oil

How (your directions):

Heat avocado oil in a large saucepan over medium high heat. 

Add the diced yellow onion and a pinch of salt and sauté for 3-4 minutes, stirring frequently.

Add diced mushrooms, salt, and dried thyme.  Sauté, stirring frequently, until liquid from mushrooms evaporates, about 5 minutes.

Add white wine and stir for 30 seconds.

Add potatoes and vegetable broth.  Bring to a boil, then cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat vegan butter in a small pan over medium heat.  Add chanterelle mushrooms and sauté for 2-3 minutes.  Season with a pinch of salt.   

Turn the stove heat off and stir in nondairy milk into the soup.  Using an immersion blender or high-speed blender, blend the mushroom soup until smooth.

Serve soup with freshly ground pepper and a spoonful of chanterelle mushrooms on top.  Drizzle with good olive oil and enjoy hot!

Why (the science):  Fiber-rich potatoes and nondairy milk add a plant-based creaminess to the soup without the need for heavy cream or half-and-half!  Mushrooms are prebiotics, which feed the healthy bacteria in your gut to help reduce inflammation and boost your immune system.

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.

Hemp Dip with Dill and Parsley (Vegan, GF)

Hemp Dip with Dill and Parsley is the perfect meal prep dip that can last 3-4 days in the fridge.  It’s highly versatile, too!  Serve with your favorite veggies on a crudité platter, spread on a sandwich, or even dress a salad with it.  And what’s even better is that Hemp Dip with Dill and Parsley get whipped up in a blender or food processor in 30 seconds 😊

Serves: 6

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 0 minutes

What (your ingredients):

½ hemp seeds

¼ cup water

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 teaspoons fresh dill

2 tablespoons fresh parsley

¼ teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon white wine vinegar

How (your directions):

Add all ingredients to a blender or small food processor, and blend on high for about 30 seconds.

Serve with your favorite veggies, as a salad dressing, or even spread on your next sandwich!

Why (the science):  Hemp hearts are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which are a heart-healthy fat that can help relieve symptoms of depression and anxiety.  Omega-3’s are also important for healthy brain development!

Mexican Fiesta Quinoa Salad

This recipe is a crowd-pleaser! Colorful and delicious, Mexican Fiesta Quinoa Salad is the perfect recipe for healthy meal prepped lunches, quick weeknight dinners, or part of a festive summer BBQ!

Serves: 6-8

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 15 minutes

What (your ingredients):

1 cup quinoa

2 cups vegetable broth

1 15.5 oz can black beans

1 cup fire roasted corn

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon white wine vinegar

1 teaspoon cumin

1 teaspoon chili powder

1 teaspoon salt

2 spring onions, thinly sliced

How (your directions):

Add quinoa and vegetable broth to a saucepan.  Bring to a boil, then cover, lower heat to low, and simmer for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, add black beans, corn, olive oil, vinegar, cumin, chili powder, and salt to a large bowl.  Stir to combine.

Once quinoa has finished cooking, turn heat off and allow to sit, covered, for another 5 minutes. 

Add quinoa to the black bean and corn mixture.  Top with thinly sliced spring onions.

Enjoy warm, room temperature, or cold!  Store leftovers in an airtight container for 4-5 days.

Why (the science):  Quinoa and black beans are rich in protein, making this a satisfying lunch throughout the week!

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!

Quinoa Crusted Quiche with Roasted Tomatoes and Thyme | GF, Dairy-Free |

Quiche is typically not a healthy meal- it’s usually loaded with heavy cream, half and half, butter, cheese, and sometimes bacon or ham.  This Quinoa Crusted Quiche with Roasted Tomatoes and Thyme is super healthful and rich in protein and antioxidants!  The quinoa crust holds its form with the help of omega-3 rich flax meal, and the eggy center is dairy-free.  This quinoa crusted quiche can also be meal prepped for a week of healthy breakfasts that you can simply heat and eat 😊

Serves: 4-6

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 50 minutes

What (your ingredients):

1 cup quinoa

2 cups water

2 tablespoons flax meal

4 tablespoons water

1 pint cherry tomatoes

1 teaspoon olive oil

½ teaspoon dried thyme

6 eggs

½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon pepper

¾ cup unsweetened almond milk or Ripple (pea protein milk)

Cooking oil spray

How (your directions):

Preheat oven to 425 °F.

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

Meanwhile, add cherry tomatoes to a baking sheet.  Drizzle with olive oil and thyme.  Roast at 425 °F for 15 minutes.

Add flax meal and 4 tablespoons water to a large bowl.  Stir to combine and set aside.

To another large bowl, add eggs, salt, pepper, and dairy-free milk.  Whisk to combine.

When the quinoa has finished cooking, add quinoa to the bowl with the flax meal.  Stir to combine.

Spritz a tart pan or pie dish with avocado oil to prevent quinoa crust from sticking.  Add quinoa and flax mixture to the pie dish, then press evenly into dish and up the sides to create a crust.

When the tomatoes have finished roasting, place them evenly on top of quinoa crust. 

Reduce the oven temperature to 375°F.

Pour egg mixture over the tomatoes.

Bake the quiche for 35 minutes.

Serve hot or warm!

Why (the science):  Roasted tomatoes are high in lycopene, which is especially healthful for men in helping reduce the risk of prostate cancer.

 

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!

Grilled Romaine & Corn Salad with Basil Aioli Dressing (Vegan, GF)

If you’re bored with the same meals and are looking for the simplest and quickest way to switch it up, then you’re going to love this Grilled Romaine and Corn Salad with Basil Aioli Dressing.  The dressing and salad come together in 15 minutes flat! The Basil Aioli Dressing is creamy, dreamy and just happens to be super healthy and vegan (but don’t tell your spouse and children that...)  Whip up this showstopper salad in both winter for some needed brightness and color, and in summer to impress your BBQ party guests. 

Serves: 2-4 (2 meals, 4 sides)

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 5 minutes

What (your ingredients):

Basil Aioli Dressing:

1 cup raw cashew halves

½ cup boiling water

¼ teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons lemon juice (1 lemon)

1 garlic clove

1 20-gram package basil

For the Salad:

½ tablespoon olive oil

1 head romaine, rinsed and dried

½ sweet corn, frozen

How (your directions):

To make the Basil Aioli Dressing, start by placing cashews in a small bowl and covering them with ½ cup boiling water.  Let stand 5 minutes.

While cashews are soaking, heat grill pan over medium heat.  Slice the head of romaine in half.  Tip: do not remove the tough bottom that holds romaine head together.

Once heated, add the olive oil to the grill pan.  Place each romaine half, cut side down, onto grill pan.  Next to the romaine, add the frozen corn.  Cook romaine halves and corn 3-4 minutes.

While grilling, add cashews and their soaking water, salt, lemon juice, garlic clove, and basil to a blender. 

Blend until smooth.

Plate by placing grilled romaine halves onto a large serving platter, then evenly distribute grilled corn on top.  Drizzle liberally with the Basil Aioli Dressing.

Why (the science):  Creamy dressings from the store are loaded with processed ingredients, preservatives, and unhealthy fats.  This Basil Aioli Dressing is super nutritious, between the heart-healthy and protein-filled cashews and the anticarcinogenic garlic.  This creamy dressing is something to feel good about 😊

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.

Zucchini Tea Sandwiches

I love tea sandwiches- small, bite-size, dainty and perfect for tea…As a play on an old favorite (cucumber tea sandwiches), I love the idea of creating full size Zucchini Tea Sandwiches! It couldn’t be easier or quicker to cut zucchini into thin ribbons, layer them on toasty bread with cream cheese, and drizzle them with really good olive oil.  These are great for a very quick lunch, but would be beautiful to serve to a crowd on a wooden cutting board 😊

Serves: 1

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 0 minutes

What (your ingredients):

2 pieces whole wheat oat bread (or your favorite bread)

2 tablespoons cream cheese

1 small zucchini

Salt and pepper to taste

Olive oil, to serve

How (your directions):

Toast bread to desired doneness.  Meanwhile, using a vegetable peeler, slice zucchini into long, thin ribbons.

Once bread is toasted, spread one tablespoon of cream cheese (regular or vegan) onto each slice.

Layer the zucchini ribbons lengthwise across each slice.  Trim off crust (and eat!), then serve Zucchini Tea Sandwiches on a wooden cutting board.

Season with salt, pepper, and a drizzle of olive oil.

Enjoy!

Why (the science):  Zucchini is rich in flavonoids, which means it can help slow down aging processes by neutralizing the damaging effects of free radicals.

 

 

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

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. 

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.

 

Acai Bowl with Vanilla Bean Granola |+Video|

Acai bowls can be expensive, unless you make them at home!  This recipe is inspired by one of my favorites in Charlottesville, VA but costs significantly less.  The vanilla bean granola is special- slightly chewy, but rich in flavor from the vanilla bean and cashews.  This recipe makes a lot of granola, which stores beautifully in an airtight container for a week.  What are your favorite acai bowl toppings?

Serves: 1 acai bowl, 10 servings granola

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 15 minutes

What (your ingredients):

Vanilla Bean Granola:

3 cups rolled oats

3 tablespoons water

1 tablespoon coconut oil

1 tablespoon avocado oil or olive oil

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/3 cup maple syrup

1/3 cup sunflower seeds

1/3 cup cashews

pinch of pink Himalaya sea salt

½ vanilla bean

Acai Bowl:

Handful of spinach

1 frozen banana

2 handfuls frozen mango

½ cup plant-based milk

2 tablespoons hemp protein powder

1 scoop greens powder with probiotics

How (your directions):

Preheat oven to 350°F. 

For the vanilla bean granola, add all ingredients to a large bowl and stir until evenly distributed.

Pour mixture onto lined baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes.

Remove granola from oven and allow to cool.

For the acai bowl, place all ingredients in a highspeed blender and blend until smooth.

Pour into bowl and top with favorite toppings (frozen blueberries, coconut flakes, chia seeds) and the vanilla bean granola!

Why (the science):  Acai is a trending “superfood,” but for good reason.  Rich in antioxidants to reduce inflammation, acai also contains heart-healthy fats.