Vegan Coleslaw

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Coleslaw is a total potluck staple and barbecue necessity and I spent a good portion of my life thinking that I hated it (as I’m sure plenty of others can relate). Well, turns out….I realized I just hate the heavy mayonnaise drowning the coleslaw. Cabbage and carrots are delicious, but that soggy, nasty mayo really doesn’t do it any favors.

I was looking for a lighter, vegan version of the old classic that brings out the flavors of the veggies instead of drowning them, so I came up with this recipe.

Bring this to your next BBQ and I promise your friends will like you more for it. Especially your vegan friends, because they can totally enjoy this recipe too. This is the absolute best when served with my Jackfruit Pulled Pork (look for that recipe on the blog next week!)

Ingredients
First, the slaw:
1 small head green cabbage, finely shredded
1/2 small head red cabbage, finely shredded
3 whole carrots, finely shredded
(These are very easy to shred w/ the shredder attachments on a food processor…but if you don’t have one, you can save yourself a lot of misery by buying it bagged and pre-shredded.)

For the dressing:
1/2 cup vegan mayonnaise (Vegenaise is a good one)
1/3 cup unsweetened coconut yogurt
3 tbsp white or apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp white onion
2 tbsp honey
2 tsp of dry mustard (or the yellow kind works too)
1/2 tsp celery salt
Salt & pepper, to taste

Instructions:
1. Shred all cabbage and carrots in a food processor, or skip this step entirely by purchasing the pre-shredded coleslaw mixes.
2. Using your food processor (or a separate bowl for mixing with a whisk), combine all dressing ingredients and blend until very smooth. (Be sure to grate the onion before adding it to the dressing if you’re not using a food processor)
3. Pour over shredded cabbage and carrot mixture and stir well until all cabbage is evenly coated
4. Taste & add salt and pepper as needed
5. Store in the fridge for at least an hour before serving, so all the flavors can really combine. It tastes even better the next day and will store well for several days!

One of my favorite variations on this recipe is to add about 4-5 shredded broccoli stocks to my slaw. When buying whole broccoli, don’t just use the florets and toss their stocks in the trash! These stocks are still packed full of vitamins and fiber and can easily be saved in the fridge for several days. Run ’em through the shredder in your food processor or chop them up into little matchsticks for some extra boost to your salads and slaw.

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Quinoa Tabouli Salad

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Here’s a fresh and easy lunch that’s all sorts of delicious. It gets bonus points in my house for making great use of leftover quinoa from the previous night’s dinner, and this can be thrown together in less than 5 minutes. Here’s a quick recipe for one serving, but multiply it as needed (it stores great all week if you want to make a huge batch ahead of time):

Ingredients:
1/2 cup white quinoa, cooked
1/2 cup parsley, finely chopped
1 roma tomato, diced
1 tbsp green onion, chopped
1 tsp olive oil
1 tbsp lemon (or more, to taste)
Salt & pepper, to taste

Directions:
Cook the white quinoa and allow to cool. Finely chop parsley and green onion and dice the tomato. Combine the quinoa and veggies. Drizzle in the olive oil & lemon juice, add salt and pepper, and mix well.

 

Chocolate Chip Cashew Cookie Balls

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I don’t about you guys, but I’m a big fan of eating constantly…meaning I basically don’t leave the house without lots of snacks on me. These chocolate chip cookie dough balls are one of my go-to snacks when running out the door or for throwing in a backpack.

Ingredients:
1 cup raw cashews (soaked 1 hour-overnight)
1 cup dates, pitted
1/3 cup dark chocolate chips

Directions:
Soak 1 cup of dates in warm water for 1/2 hour & 1 cup of cashews for at least an hour (but overnight is most ideal for easy blending). Drain the dates and the cashews & blend in a food processor until it forms a sticky, even consistency and holds together well. The mixture should start to form a big ball in your food processor when it is ready.

Stir in chocolate chips (optional, or you could add dried fruit, coconut, more nuts, really whatever you want)  & roll into balls. Let refrigerate for an hour before eating or packing for best results!

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Hummus

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Hummus

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Growing up with a Lebanese grandmother, hummus was always a family favorite and could never be store bought if you didn’t want to face her wrath. After years of making hummus from scratch and experimenting with numerous “savory” versions (hello,  jalapeño cilantro, avocado lime, and roasted red pepper garlic) it was time for a “sweet” variation. I replaced the traditional tahini (sesame seed paste) with another seed/nut butter (peanut butter) and added some other sweet touches, and I must say…holy chickpeas this stuff turned out DELICIOUS!

Not to mention, it’s gluten free, vegan, and packed with fiber and protein. I did the nutritional analysis on this recipe, and for something so sweet it’s much less sinful than you might think. In a 3 tbsp serving (though, let’s be real…I usually eat the whole bowl) this dip provides 22% of your recommended daily fiber, 7.3 grams of protein, and 12% of your daily iron at only 176 calories. Feel free to indulge, my friends.

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cup garbanzo beans (or 1 can, rinsed and drained)
3 tbsp peanut butter
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 tbsp honey
1/3 cup dark chocolate chips
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ tsp cinnamon

Directions:
▪   Combine your rinsed garbanzo beans, peanut butter, coconut oil, honey, vanilla extract, and cinnamon and process them in a food processor until smooth.
▪   Remove from food processor and stir in chocolate chips by hand.
▪   Pour into serving dish

Really easy and super delicious! I like to serve this cookie dough dip with apple and pear slices, but it could also be really awesome as a dip for graham crackers. If you don’t do peanuts, you could easily replace the peanut butter with almond butter, sunflower seed butter, or whatever else you like. 🙂

This recipe makes about 8-10 servings of around 3 tbsp each.

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Here are the nutrition facts, in case anyone was wondering. 🙂

cookie dough hummus

Chopped Kale Salad w/ Vegan Béchamel Sauce

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This salad is so decadent, I could seriously eat it every day. It’s hard to believe it’s totally vegan & gluten free. It’s almost like the salad equivalent to mac and cheese….that good.

Add to salad bowl:
-2 cups raw chopped kale, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, red & green cabbage (Trader Joe’s “Cruciferous Crunch” salad blend is awesome!)
-1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

Make the vegan béchamel sauce using the following ingredients:

-1 tbsp Earth Balance vegan margarine or olive oil
-1 tbsp ground cashews or cashew meal
-1 tbsp nutritional yeast
-1/2 cup vegetable broth
-Pinch of sea salt & cracked pepper

Add the above sauce ingredients to a saucepan, whisking constantly over low to medium heat. Make sure that it doesn’t boil, but rather melts and reduces. The sauce will become smooth, creamy, and thick.

Remove from heat, immediately pouring piping hot sauce over bed of greens, allowing them to wilt a bit.

Enjoy!

All-Veggie-Everythang Kale “Tacos”

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I am not a huge fan of heavy lunches when it’s the middle of the hundred plus degree summers, so this is one of my favorite light meals on super hot days here in AZ.

I’m going to call this recipe kale “tacos”. Okay, so they’re basically salad boats made of vegetables and filled with vegetables…but I promise you they’re addictive. And who doesn’t like food that serves as an edible container?

Serve whole, washed Lacinato kale leaves (this is also sometimes called dinosaur kale) topped with chopped broccoli, green, yellow, and red bell peppers, cucumber, strawberries, & cilantro.

Drizzle with tahini lime dressing (1/2 tbsp of tahini/sesame paste mixed with juice of 1/2 lime & a little water).

Cauliflower Pizza Crust

Cauliflower Pizza Crust
Serves: 2-4

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Highlights:

  • Gluten free
  • Low carb.
  • High in fiber
  • Super Easy!
  • Could easily be made vegan with the substitution of Daiya (or other brand) vegan cheese and replacing the egg with a flax or chia egg.

Pizza is definitely an all time favorite comfort food, but the kind you have delivered to your door has a reputation for being notoriously greasy, and full of carbs and fat. This cauliflower pizza crust is a fantastic way to replace the greasy bread with a mellow flavored, nutrient-packed vegetable instead.

Cauliflower is a cruciferous vegetable that is naturally low in fat and carbohydrates and an excellent source of vitamin C,  fiber, and folate. It is also a good source of choline, vitamin B6, vitamin K, potassium, manganese, vitamin B5, protein and iron. It possesses a high nutrient density, meaning that it contains a very high number of nutrients (vitamins and minerals) and a very low amount of energy (calories and fat).  Nutrient dense foods, such a fruits and veggies, pack the highest levels of nutrients for the least amount of calories, making them the opposite of “empty calorie” or energy-dense foods, such as processed or sugary snacks, which carry relatively low amounts of nutrients with an excessive amount of calories or fat.

I’ve spent some time perfecting this recipe before posting, as I initially was having some trouble with my cauliflower crust sticking to the pan. The secret I discovered through trial and error: the lightly coated parchment paper is a must! The crust stuck horribly to a coated pizza pan, stone, or tin foil, but slid effortlessly off the parchment paper. The result was a pizza crust that was crispy and golden brown on the outside, soft on the inside, and easy to slice, pick up, and eat with your hands.

Oh, and an added bonus…it’s naturally gluten free!

Ingredients:

  • 1 head of cauliflower
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 3 tbsp. Parmesan cheese
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • Olive Oil
  • ¼ cup homemade or store bought tomato sauce
  • ½ cup fresh mozzarella
  • ¼ cup fresh basil leaves
  • ¼ tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • Sun-dried tomatoes

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Directions:
1) Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees and line a pizza pan or baking sheet with parchment paper. Lightly coat parchment paper in olive oil.  (I highly recommend the use of parchment paper; I had a lot of trouble with the crust sticking to the pizza pan or aluminum foil the first couple of times I made this.)

2) Either grate the cauliflower using an old-fashioned cheese grater or place in the food processor until it’s a fine, grated consistency; A rice-like consistency will work just fine, but I’ve found that the finer the cauliflower is, the closer the texture in your mouth feels to real pizza crust.

3) Optional: Place the grated cauliflower in a microwave safe bowl and microwave for 3-5 minutes, until softened. Remove from the microwave and let cool for a few minutes. (For an even crispier crust, skip this microwaving step entirely and move on to Step #4.)

4) Add eggs (or flax egg), Parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, and minced garlic to the warm cauliflower and mix well. Form into a 12-inch circle on the prepared pizza pan. Lightly brush olive oil over the surface of the crust and bake for 12-18 minutes, or until nice and golden brown.

5) Remove pizza crust from oven and top pizza with sauce, mozzarella, and basil. Add sundried tomatoes, onion and crushed red pepper flakes, or choose whatever toppings you prefer. Place the pizza back into the oven and bake for another 10 minutes, or until cheese is bubbly and melted. Let cool for a few minutes before slicing up; the pizza should easily slide off the parchment paper and onto a serving plate.

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