Vegan Emergency Snack Kit

snacks | July 21, 2017 | By

How to build your own on the go vegan emergency snack kit!

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Vegan Savory Spinach and Artichoke Rolls

entrees, snacks | July 4, 2017 | By

These savory rolls are bubbly hot amazingness! Like an adorable, portable spinach and artichoke dip!

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Vegan Everything Bagel Cheese Ball

snacks | March 19, 2017 | By

Everything bagels are my favorite bagels. That is all I used to eat, and I didn’t branch out until I got a little older. I love the flavor combination, it is so delicious. It is comforting and perfect. I have been wanting to make my own everything bagel spice blend for a while, and use it in an imaginative way! When I finally realized that the best thing to go with this particular spice blend, is cheese. A cheese ball with everything bagel spice mixed in, and then crusted in the spice was what I decided, and it is so G.D good. 

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Vegan Ricotta and Roasted Grape Crostini

entrees, snacks | December 10, 2016 | By

A fairly new tradition my family has started is to have a cheese, wine and appetizer party on Christmas eve. We have been doing this for about 5 or 6 years, and I love it. I also love trying new vegan options to have, that not only I fall in love with, but that also keeps the omnivores coming back for more. I love making different cheese balls with various nuts, coming up with flatbread pizza, tiny skewers of delicious bite sized appetizers, and last year, my husband made vegan carrot and tomato soup shooters with vegan grilled cheese dippers. This year though, I may have developed something that will top all other years. A crispy baguette sliced and perfectly toasted, topped with outstanding cashew ricotta, roasted grapes and fresh thyme.

Literally a flavor explosion, I don’t think I have tasted much better. This year, these beauties will be placed alongside regular cheese and bread and crackers, and I promise it will hold it’s own. Crispy, creamy, chewy, sweet, and salty. The ultimate handheld food.  I like to peruse old Southern Living magazines and cookbooks, and a while ago I came across something similar, of course with regular ricotta. I though what a great appetizer to try to veganize, and what a perfect time to try. This would be great for any holiday party, and I am convinced it would be perfect for New Years Eve paired with crisp, bubbly champagne! 

What are your beloved holiday family traditions? Or do you love to spend the holidays with friends? Either way, give this a try. Just casually incorporate it into any holiday potluck, and be the biggest hit at the party. For real. 

This is a really easy recipe, it is just sightly time consuming and a bit involved. Just the cheese making process, the roasting of the grapes is a very quick and easy thing that you can do right before serving. The cheese though, I suggest making in the morning, or it would be very easy to make a day or two ahead of time and be kept in the fridge. Then you can just toast the bread, roast the grapes and take the cheese out when it is assembly time! The cashews also need to soak for at least 8 hours, but overnight would be better. So also something you can do a few days in advance. After the cashews soak though, all you have to do is throw everything in a blender. Easy peasy. Place in a cheesecloth and let drain. Ready to go!

I love bites of food I can have ready before guests arrive, so that I don’t have to spend time in the kitchen once friends and family are there. To me, the holidays are about remembering what and who are important to me. Make the best of my time with loved ones is the most important thing, and being ready at party time is a perfect way to do just that. These can be served room temperature, so you can do this when the time is best for you! I want a cocktail in my hand and my favorite people by my side! 

I hope you enjoy! Happy holiday parties to you, and here’s to showing everyone you can happily make it through the holidays living an all plant based life.

 

 

Tools I used:
Pure Acres Farm 100% Unbleached Cheese Cloth, 18 Sq Feet
Ninja Professional Blender (BL610)
Lodge L8SGP3 Cast Iron Square Grill Pan, Pre-Seasoned, 10.5-inch

Pour 

Vegan Ricotta and Roasted Grape Crostini
Serves 20
Crispy bread, creamy cashew ricotta and sweet roasted grapes make the perfect appetizer.
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Prep Time
10 hr
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
10 hr 15 min
Prep Time
10 hr
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
10 hr 15 min
Cashew cheese
  1. 2 C. Cashews, raw (soaked for 8-24 hours)
  2. 4 Tbsp. Apple cider vinegar
  3. 2 Tbsp. Lemon juice
  4. 4 Tbsp. Almond milk
  5. 3 tsp. Salt
  6. 2 tsp. Pepper
  7. 2 tsp. Garlic powder
Roasted Grapes
  1. 2 C. Purple grapes
  2. 2 tsp. Olive oil or grape oil
  3. 1 tsp. Salt
For serving
  1. 2 Baguettes (make sure they are vegan, there are also some good gluten free baguette options of you want)
  2. 2 Tbsp. Fresh thyme
Instructions
  1. Soak the cashews in water for at least 8 hours, I like to just leave mine over night.
  2. When the cashews are ready, drain and place in a blender with the remaining cheese ingredients.
  3. Blend on high for a few minutes until it starts to become creamy. You still want a little texture, so stop when it looks like there are no more cashew chunks, but not so creamy that it looks like sauce. This should only take a couple minutes.
  4. Pour into a cheesecloth and tighten, tie off and place in a colander over a bowl. Let drain at least three hours, but this can be done overnight as well.
  5. When the cheese has drained, you can squeeze a bit of liquid out yourself as well, it should look like a ricotta texture, place in the fridge.
  6. When you are ready to serve, preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Place the grapes on a baking sheet and toss evenly with oil and salt.
  7. Bake for 7-9 minutes.
  8. Slice and toast the baguette while the grapes are roasting.
  9. When grapes are ready, they will burst a bit.
  10. To assemble, spread cashew ricotta on toast, place a few grapes on top and top that with thyme, serve when ready!
Notes
  1. Want this to be gluten free as well? There are some really great gluten free baguette options as well!
Rabbit and Wolves http://www.rabbitandwolves.com/

 

 

Vegan Baked Sour Cream and Onion Potato Chips

snacks | November 3, 2016 | By

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Were you ever a super sweaty kid, running around outside in the summer, waiting for a lunch of peanut butter sandwiches and a bag of chips to be brought outside? Well, I was. My favorite really unhealthy snack? Sour cream and onion potato chips! I would kill a whole bag after burning so many calories playing all day that it really didn’t matter. Well, that is totally not the case anymore, what I eat definitely matters now. For so many reasons. Not only do the gazillions of chemicals in processed food effect me negatively, but the grease that comes off of fried foods makes me sick to my stomach for days. I have a very sensitive tummy!

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Since I was a teenager and I decided to start checking out the ingredients on the back of packages,  since then, I have had a hard time downing chips in good conscience. Check it out, regular potato chips have like a thousand ingredients. Why? Why I ask you? Not only do they have ingredients that are terrible for you, flavors you think should be vegan are not. I have found many salt and pepper and salt and vinegar chips that contain milk. Why? Why I ask you?

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I decided to take on the this world of very unhealthy chips, and try to make something that reminds me of my childhood favorite, that I can feel good about eating, and I can feel good about giving to my daughter. I found some recipes for homemade sour cream and onion chips that were not vegan, and were still fried. So I adapted several of these recipes I found and made something so totally addictive, so crispy and crunchy and salty, that tastes so much like regular sour cream and onion chips it is scary!

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This recipe is so insanely easy, you are just slicing, tossing in some spices and baking. It really doesn’t get any easier than that! I used a mandoline to slice the potatoes super thin so they get extra awesomely crispy! However, if you don’t own one, you can slice them really thin with a knife, it is just a little more work.  I also definitely recommend not skipping the step of processing the spices together in the food processor, it makes it much easier to coat the potatoes evenly. I hope you love these as much as I do! Adapted from The Food Network.

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Tools I used:
OXO Good Grips Adjustable HandHeld Mandoline Slicer
Hamilton Beach 10-Cup Food Processor, with Bowl Scraper (70730)
Good Cook Set Of 3 Non-Stick Cookie Sheet

 

Vegan Baked Sour Cream and Onion Potato Chips

  • Prep Time: 15m
  • Cook Time: 45m
  • Total Time: 1h
  • Serves: 4
  • Category:

Ingredients

  • 4 c Potatoes, sliced very thin
  • 2 tbsp. Vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • 3 tbsp. Nutritional yeast
  • 2 tbsp. Onion powder
  • 1 tbsp. Garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. Sugar
  • 3 tbsp. Fresh chives

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Using a mandoline if possible, or a knife if you don’t have a mandoline, slice potatoes super thin. About 1/16th of an inch thick. I used about 5 small potatoes to get 4 cups.
  3. Place potatoes in a large bowl and pour oil on top, toss to coat all of the potatoes in oil.
  4. In a food processor, place all the spices except the chives. Pulse until the nutritional yeast is nice an fine. Pour seasoning mix on top of potatoes and stir to coat all of the potatoes thoroughly.
  5. Chop chives very fine and sprinkle on top, stirring once more to make sure chives are on all the potatoes.
  6. On a prepared baking sheet, place the chips in a single layer, do not overlap them. Bake at 350 for 35-45 minutes, until crispy and brown. They will burn fast, so watch them towards the end!
  7. Enjoy!

Vegan PopTarts

breakfast, snacks | August 18, 2016 | By

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I used to DESTROY Poptarts when I was a kid. I was a super picky eater. My parents struggled constantly to get me to eat anything. I ate bagel bites, eggo waffles, mac n’ cheese, peanut butter sandwiches(no jelly, under any circumstances), plain pasta and poptarts. As you can see, these are not the healthiest choices, but I would barely eat any of these things anyways, resulting in me being a small child. However, as you can probably guess, eventually this caught up with me. At the time, I think my parents were just happy if I ate anything. The only vegetables I liked were broccoli and carrots, and I really like watermelon, but not much else in the fruit department.

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Eventually realizing I couldn’t live like that, and beginning to try new things, finding all of the different types of food I liked really helped. Then becoming very aware that I didn’t like meat( which was part of why I wouldn’t eat anything my parents cooked) and finding out others were the same, and there was a whole group of people and diet based around this concept, was very exciting. I didn’t want to lose everything I loved in my childhood, I just didn’t want to eat the processed crap version of all of these things.

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Using my super awesome and easy vegan pie crust, I turned ordinary dough into extraordinary Poptarts. You can fill them with anything you want, I used various jam fillings. Blueberry and raspberry to be specific, just because that is what I had lying around. They were so delicious and flaking and had rainbow sprinkles on top which always makes my heart happy! Please enjoy! (my daughter had one for breakfast this morning!)

Ingredients:

Crust:

1 1/2 C. All purpose flour

1 tsp. Salt

1 tsp. Sugar

1/2 C. Vegan butter ( I use Earth Balance)

1/3 C. Almond milk

Filling:

1 1/2 Tbsp. Jam or Jelly of choice

or

1 tsp. Vegan butter+1 Tbsp. Brown sugar+1/2 tsp. cinnamon

Glaze:

1 C. Powdered sugar

2 Tbsp. Almond milk

Topping:

Rainbow sprinkles

Directions:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, salt and sugar.
  2. Cut in vegan butter with a pastry cutter or fork. Cut until vegan butter is pea sized.
  3. Add almond milk and combine to form a ball. Make sure it isn’t sticky , you can add a little more milk or a little more flour if you need it.
  4. Place dough ball in the fridge for at least in hour.
  5. Preheat oven to 450 when the dough is ready.
  6. Roll dough out on a floured surface to about an 1/8th of an inch thick.
  7. Cut dough into rectangles, place one side on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  8. Poke holes with a fork in the rectangles that will be the bottom.
  9. Place filling of choice in center of dough and spread out leaving a border around the edge.
  10. Place another rectangle on top and seal edges with a fork and poke more holes in top rectangle.
  11. Bake at 450 for about 15 minutes or until browned.
  12. Let cool, combine powdered sugar and almond milk. pour on top of cooled tarts and top with sprinkles(if you want)

Super easy, and fun!

Tools I used:

Winco 5 Blade Pastry Blender, Stainless Steel
Fox Run Marble Rolling Pin with Wood Base, White
Wilton Recipe Right 3 Piece Cookie Pan Set

If you make this recipe or any of my others, please leave me a comment with some feedback! I want to make sure I am doing a good job! Thanks!!

Vegan Cheddar and Chive Biscuits

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One of my favorite flavor combinations happens to be cheddar and chive. So when I sit down and think about what I miss eating and what I think others would really have a craving for, I think about a cheddar and onion type flavor. A big thing for me is proving that anyone can be vegan, I think if I hone in on all the reasons people come up with for why they CAN’T be vegan, and create alternatives, no one will have an excuse. I hear a lot of, “I need more protein”, “I love cheese too much!”, “What about baked goods and butter?” I have got you covered.

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Working with this theory, I also thought a lot about when I was a kid and my dad would take us for a “fancy” dinner at The Red Lobster. I don’t remember what I ate there, except for their biscuits. From what I remember, these biscuits taste very similar! That is the only thing I can think of that I miss about eating at chain seafood restaurants. These biscuits are super flaky and buttery, and they were eaten in my house in a matter of minutes. I can not think of a regular non vegan biscuit I have eaten anywhere that I liked better than these.

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I put quite a bit of vegan cheddar and chives into my biscuit mixture, and I think it was the perfect amount. There is a bit of cheese and chives dotted in every part of the biscuit. I ate one warm with a bit of vegan butter, my husband made a breakfast sandwich( that looked insane), so many options. I think a biscuits and gravy situation would be fantastic!

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These biscuits are also one of the easiest recipes I have made. I am pretty confident, that even if you have very little cooking or baking experience, you could manage to make them. You are literally throwing everything in a bowl, mixing, kneading a bit, cutting and baking. They are pretty fool proof. I know many people say they can’t cook or bake and that is why they can’t be vegan. Yes, when you are vegan you have to make a lot of your own food, but it’s popularity is on such a rise, that I can find pretty much everything I need at any grocery store! However, for the things that are not mass produced at this point, I’ve got you covered! Please enjoy! Adapted from my own biscuit recipe for Cinnamon Pecan Biscuits

Ingredients:

1 C. Almond milk

1 Tbsp. Apple cider vinegar

1/2 C. Chives(chopped)

1 C. Daiya Cheddar Style Shreds

2 C. All purpose flour + more for kneading

1 Tbsp. Baking powder

1 tsp. Baking soda

1 1/2 tsp. Salt

5 Tbsp.  Cold vegan butter ( I use Earth Balance)

Directions:

  1. Make vegan buttermilk by mixing the milk and apple cider vinegar together and set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 450.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, add 2 cups of flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Stir just to combine.
  4. In a small mixing bowl, mix Daiya cheddar and chives with 1 Tbsp. of flour. Toss to coat.
  5. Using a fork or a pastry cutter, cut the vegan butter into the dry mixture. Make sure your vegan butter is very cold. Cut in until the butter is small pea size.
  6. Add the cheddar and chive mixture into the dough and stir.
  7. Pour the vegan buttermilk into the flour mixture and stir to combine. It will still be a little sticky.
  8. Turn dough out onto floured surface, and add a little more flour, kneading and adding until it is no longer sticky.
  9. Pat dough down in a large circle until it is about an inch thick. Using a large circle cutter or a cup, cut out your biscuits.
  10. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, and bake at 450 for about 15-20 minutes. I topped with a little more vegan butter half way through baking to help them brown.
  11. Eat them all!

Tools I used:

Winco 5 Blade Pastry Blender, Stainless Steel
ChefLand Mixing Bowls Standard Weight Stainless Steel, Mirror Finish, 3/4, 11/2, 3, 4, 5, and 8 Qt. (Set of 6)
Wilton Recipe Right 3 Piece Cookie Pan Set
Baker’s Secret 1067738 3-Piece Biscuit Cutter Set

Vegan Gluten Free Nutella Cookie Truffles

desserts, snacks | August 8, 2016 | By

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Many of you may have noticed my previous post, I dove head first into the dream that is vegan, refined sugar free nutella. I have been using this on everything. Also, I now have a million ideas about how to incorporate this into my favorite recipes. Look forward to a lot of delicious breakfast items and desserts in the very near future. This idea came about by just thinking of some healthier desserts items that I think are fool proof and anyone who says they would be vegan, but they don’t know how to cook, this ones for you. This is a no bake, one bowl recipe, with very few ingredients. You do have to make the nutella first, but then you can just use the food processor without cleaning it, and save the rest of the nutella for your morning toast!

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My daughter was super pumped to help, this is so easy she probably could have done it herself, and she did do all of the sprinkle topping! Please enjoy! I love what I create, and I hope you will love these as well!

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Ingredients:

2/3 C. Vegan Nutella

20 Gluten free chocolate sandwich cookies( I used Trader Joe’s Gluten Free Joe Joe’s) (You can also use regular oreos or whatever you like)

2 Tbsp. Almond milk

1 C. Dark chocolate

Rainbow sprinkles

Directions:

  1. Put the vegan nutella, cookies and almond milk in a food processor. Process until it forms a semi wet ball.
  2. Scoop about a tablespoon of the mixture and form a ball and place on a baking sheet that is lined with parchment paper.
  3. Freeze for at least an hour.
  4. Melt dark chocolate in the microwave for 30 second intervals, stirring after each interval until completely melted.
  5. Dip or top balls with chocolate and top with sprinkles. Freeze again for 30 minutes or so, and enjoy!
  6. You can keep them in the fridge after that and pop one in your mouth whenever it strikes your fancy!

Tools I Used:

Conair Cuisinart DLC-2ABC Mini Prep Plus Food Processor Brushed Chrome and Nickel

OXO Good Grips Small Cookie Scoop

Chef’s Quality Rainbow Sprinkles, 7 lb

Vegan Copy Cat Nacho Cheese Doritos

snacks | August 1, 2016 | By

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I friggin’ love Doritos, they are something I still crave, nacho cheese, cool ranch, all the 90’s goodness. They were my jam in the 90’s! Pop open a bottle of soda and a bag o’ Doritos, oh man! So, I was pondering this craving the other day, and wondering how many other vegans(or just people who try not to eat crap) have this craving? My dad is a pretty healthy guy, eats mostly whole foods, and cooks a lot! He is also super active, and is on an outdoor adventure most days. However, when I was a kid, I don’t think he knew a lot about nutrition. He came from an era where there were no processed foods, so when everything became processed, I think he just accepted it and didn’t look into all the processed junk in foods. So, when I was little he would get us some junk foods, chips, mac n’ cheese, pop tarts, all kinds of stuff. So, as I have said before, part of my mission is to update all my childhood favorite non vegan processed foods, as well as things people don’t think can be veganized. I will be trying my hand at a cool ranch flavor as well, but for now these are the sh#%@t!

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Chris and I have been talking a lot about nostalgic foods, what they mean to us, and how to update them. We talk about are dream food truck(that may happen one day) and how we would love to give people adult versions of kid foods. So, as I got to thinkin’, what if we bagged up delicious, baked not fried, whole food Doritos? Thus this recipe was born, I hope you enjoy as much as I did. To all the kids and kids at heart, you can now savor these guilt free chips!

 

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Ingredients:

6-8 6 in. Tortillas ( I used Trader Joes Habanero Lime, they were already orange, however you can use plain, the seasoning will turn them orange)

4 Tbsp. Vegetable oil

3 Tbsp. Vegan Parmesan

2 tsp. Chili powder

2 tsp. Smoked paprika

1 tsp. Salt

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Brush all the tortillas on both sides with veggie oil.
  2. Cut each tortilla into 8 equal triangles using a pizza cutter.
  3. Pour all the seasoning into a large plastic ziploc bag and shake to combine.
  4. Place all of the tortilla triangles into the bag and shake to coat fully with seasoning.
  5. Place tortillas in a single layer on to a parchment lined baking sheet.
  6. Bake at 350 for 10-15 minutes. They will get super crispy and amazing!
  7. Devour!

Tools I used:

KitchenAid Pizza Wheel, Black
Wilton Recipe Right 3 Piece Cookie Pan Set

Vegan Pineapple Coconut Bread

So, we had a potluck to go to yesterday, a welcoming back party for some of my best friends! Saturday, I knew I wanted to bake for the occasion, but something simple and easy to transport. Every time I make a cake or cupcakes for an order or a party where I have to take it to a different location, I freak out the whole drive. I usually make Chris drive, and hold whatever it is, as if it is an infant. So, I decided this was not how I wanted to play it for this party. I just wanted to relax with friends! I also thought tropical flavors would be appropriate, as it was around 100 degrees outside yesterday.

I had everything I thought I would need to make pineapple coconut bread. It would be easy, and incredibly simple to transport. I just let it cool all the way and wrapped it in tin foil, it was a great success and delicious and everyone loved it!

I could not stop eating this. It is super light, sweet, but not too sweet and was a fabulous pretty fool proof, insanely easy potluck dish! Please enjoy!

Ingredients:

3 Tbsp. Vegan butter ( I use Earth Balance )

3 Tbsp. Vegetable oil

3/4 C. Sugar

2 Flax eggs ( 2 Tbsp. Flax meal + 3 Tbsp. Water=1 egg )

2 1/4 C. All purpose flour

1 tsp. Baking powder

1 tsp. Salt

3/4 C. Coconut cream ( I use Trader Joes )

1/3 C. Pineapple Juice

Glaze:

2 1/2 C. Powdered sugar

1/4 C. Pineapple Juice

Topping:

3/4 C. Toasted coconut

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350. Make your flax eggs.

2. Cream together vegan butter, oil and sugar.

3. Add in flax eggs.

4. Mix dry ingredients in a medium sized bowl. Then combine the coconut cream and pineapple juice in another bowl.

5. Start adding the flour mixture and coconut and pineapple mixture, alternating until everything is incorporated.

6. Pour into a prepared loaf pan, and bake for 60 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean.

7. Make the glaze: Mix powdered sugar and Pineapple Juice. Wait until the bread is cool, and pour over.

8. Toast your coconut, sprinkle on top of glaze.

Tools I used:

Wilton Recipe Right Medium Loaf Pan
KitchenAid KSM150PSER Artisan Tilt-Head Stand Mixer with Pouring Shield, 5-Quart, Empire Red

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