Garam Masala Baked Acorn Squash – Stuffed With Cranberry Rice

Vegan Stuffed Acorn Squash With Cranberry Rice & Garam Masala

Oh acorn squash – how I thought you were disgusting when I was a child, and, now I know what it takes to make you delicious!

Many adults aren’t squash fans, probably because their family didn’t serve it very well.  This recipe can change all that.

Healthy Vegan Baked Acorn Squash – No-Oil, Whole-Foods Plant-Based

Most people don’t know how to stuff vegetables, do they?   The ones I know anyways, are wowed when presented with a flavourful rice filled acorn squash.

No need to be impressed folks, because this stuffed acorn squash recipe is a dead easy meal to make.

Downright relaxing for the cook actually.

Jump to Recipe

Roasted With Wild Rice, Dried Cranberries, Garam Masala, Spinach and Black Beans

This whole-foods plant-based (wpb) oil-free roasted and stuffed acorn squash is extra deliciously complex, because the whole grain wild rice (any nice healthy whole grain rice should do) has extra scrumptious dried cranberry bits in it, plus the east Indian dessert pepper spice Garam Masala.

Nutrition Facts
Garam Masala Baked Acorn Squash - Stuffed With Cranberry Rice
Amount Per Serving (1 / 4th of recipe)
Calories 568 Calories from Fat 18
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 2g 3%
Sodium 727mg 30%
Potassium 1617mg 46%
Total Carbohydrates 125g 42%
Dietary Fiber 18g 72%
Sugars 21g
Protein 20g 40%
Vitamin A 86.5%
Vitamin C 44.8%
Calcium 17%
Iron 34.1%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

You can buy Garam Masala in the ethnic section of your grocery store.  I have a large bag of it, it goes nicely with fruit as well, like apple slices before bed, or on oatmeal.

Garam masala, cranberries, and acorn squash are a great combo.  Very romantic.

Plus, I’ve stirred some spinach ribbons, and optionally black beans, through this sticky sweet, spicy, rice, making things very much more interesting.

Can You Eat the Skin of Acorn Squash?

I looked it up and people said that the skin of acorn squash is edible if cooked long enough, so I announced this to my family, when serving them, they promptly all said “no thanks”.

Then I proceeded to try some of the skin on my squash, spit it out, and declared it was much too tough.

“Told you so” my husband said.

I would not encourage others to enjoy eating the skin.

Do enjoy the rest though. 🙂

FODMAP rating – without the black beans this recipe is Low FODMAP.  With the black beans, be sure to used canned, eat 1/4 cup or less of the canned beans and it is moderate FODMAP.

vegan garam masala cranberry rice stuffed acorn squash
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Garam Masala Baked Acorn Squash - Stuffed With Cranberry Rice

Course: Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: Indian, Western
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 568 kcal
Author: Jeanette Whitten

Stuffed acorn squash presents well at any family gathering or dinner party, such as Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter.  The warm, peppery and sweet seasonings pair perfectly with fall and winter weather.

I can't over-emphasize how easy this dish is to make, but makes you look like a fairly accomplished cook.  As long as you have time to cook rice, it will come together 5 minutes after the rice is done.

This vegan no-fat version has dried cranberries, rice, spinach and optionally black beans, so it can easily serve as your entire meal.  

Ingredients

  • 2 cups wild rice or other healthy whole grains, like short grain brown rice, brown basmati rice, or quinoa
  • 4 cups water or as per rice package instructions
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 tsp garam masala
  • 1 cup dried cranberries I use Craisins (sweetened)
  • 2 acorn squash small, or 1 large, washed and halved
  • 5 cups spinach finely chopped
  • 398 ml black beans, can small can, optional - if you are serving as a meal rather than a side dish

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400F

  2. Add rice, water, salt, garam masala and cranberries to a pot on high heat.  Bring to a boil, immediately reduce to low simmer, and cook for 45 minutes, or as per rice package instructions.  Check and stir often, to prevent the cranberries from burning.   If the rice is not soft once the water is gone, add more water and cook longer.  The dried cranberries can absorb liquid the rice needs.

  3. Break stem off acorn squashes (if there is one).  Cut in halves.  Scoop out the seeds and strings.  Sprinkle with pepper and salt, place cut side down on a baking sheet and bake for 30 - 45 minutes (timing will depend on the size of the squash).    

  4. Once the rice is done, turn off the heat.  Stir chopped spinach into the rice so it 'melts'.

  5. If using, drain and rinse black beans, add to rice mixture.  Let sit for a few minutes to warm the beans.

  6. Once done, remove acorn squash from the oven.  The squash should be soft all the way through.

  7. Spoon spinach, black bean, cranberry, rice mixture into squash, you should be able to pile it quite high, serve warm.

Recipe Notes

Omit the black beans to make this recipe a side dish. 

Goes well with lentil loaf at holidays.

Cut large squash into quarters before serving.

 

Nutrition Facts
Garam Masala Baked Acorn Squash - Stuffed With Cranberry Rice
Amount Per Serving (1 / 4th of recipe)
Calories 568 Calories from Fat 18
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 2g 3%
Sodium 727mg 30%
Potassium 1617mg 46%
Total Carbohydrates 125g 42%
Dietary Fiber 18g 72%
Sugars 21g
Protein 20g 40%
Vitamin A 86.5%
Vitamin C 44.8%
Calcium 17%
Iron 34.1%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

 

 

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Green Tomatoes Chickpea Avocado Edamame Rice Salad

Mix Avocado, Fresh Green Tomatoes, Chickpeas, and Edamame Beans for a Creamy Vegan Spread or Salad Bowl

Use up fresh green tomatoes in this creamy avocado, edamame, chickpea, whole-foods plant-based green goddess recipe.

Put it on rice, quinoa, or other grains with some greens, like a bed of spinach.  No-oil needed, it’s fat-free but full of natural omega fats to keep your body glowing.

Also try smashing this green spread on toast or as a filling in a lettuce wrap.

Hard to go wrong, and very easy to go right, with avocado and edamame, some frozen peas, and optionally green tomatoes.

Create yourself a super vegan creamy mixture and delight.

FODMAP rating – medium low amount of FODMAPS.  Monash recommends eating less than 1/4 cup of chickpeas, and less than 1/4 cup of thawed peas in a sitting.  If you proportion more grains and spinach and less of the filling, IBS sufferers should be able to enjoy this recipe.

Nutrition Facts
Chickpea Avocado Edamame Rice Salad
Amount Per Serving (1 / 6th of recipe including rice and red pepper)
Calories 530 Calories from Fat 99
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 11g 17%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Sodium 510mg 21%
Potassium 1119mg 32%
Total Carbohydrates 89g 30%
Dietary Fiber 16g 64%
Sugars 10g
Protein 20g 40%
Vitamin A 73.7%
Vitamin C 101.5%
Calcium 13.2%
Iron 34.5%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

 

chickpea avocado edamame rice bowl
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Chickpea Avocado Edamame Rice Salad

Course: dinner, lunch
Cuisine: Vegan, Western
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 530 kcal
Author: Jeanette Whitten

This has a green goddess appeal when you use green tomatoes fresh from your garden or local farmer's market.  Fresh and green, with creamy avocado, edamame, the tomatoes add a light citrus.

Red tomatoes also work, or omit the tomatoes.

On toast, on rice, in a lettuce wrap how else can we use this delicious filling, spread and smash?

Ingredients

  • 2 cups brown rice or a brown rice, quinoa blend
  • 1.5 cups edamame beans, frozen
  • 1 avocado
  • 540 ml chickpeas canned, drained and rinsed
  • 1.5 cups green tomatoes diced, optional
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp dijon mustard or more to taste
  • 1 cup peas frozen
  • 2 tbsp green onions as garnish, discard the white parts of the onions to make this recipe low FODMAP
  • hot sauce to taste
  • 4 cups spinach
  • 2 red peppers

Instructions

Cook Grains

  1. Cook grains, I used a rice quinoa mix.  Set aside to cool.

Prepare Edamame, Avocado, Chickpea Mix

  1. Microwave edamame in a microwave steamer to cook, as per package directions.  Usually 5 minutes. 

  2. Add avocado, drained chickpeas, green tomatoes, salt, and dijon mustard to a medium/large bowl.  Taste and adjust amount of mustard to your preference.

    vegan green tomato avocado chickpea salad
  3. Add edamame to the bowl.   Mine were in their shells still, so I microwaved them in their steamer bag and then shelled them into the bowl.

    Chickpeas, avocado, edamame smash
  4. Mash with potato masher until desired consistency.

    Edamame, Avocado, Chickpea Filling
  5. Stir in frozen peas, still frozen, they will cool it down and then you don't need to refrigerate.

Recipe Notes

To Assemble Salad:

Line a bowl or plate with fresh baby spinach or romaine lettuce.

Add rice/grains, and then the edamame, avocado, chickpea mix.  

Top with sliced red peppers, use scissors to cut green onions on top.

Add hot sauce.

Nutrition Facts
Chickpea Avocado Edamame Rice Salad
Amount Per Serving (1 / 6th of recipe including rice and red pepper)
Calories 530 Calories from Fat 99
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 11g 17%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Sodium 510mg 21%
Potassium 1119mg 32%
Total Carbohydrates 89g 30%
Dietary Fiber 16g 64%
Sugars 10g
Protein 20g 40%
Vitamin A 73.7%
Vitamin C 101.5%
Calcium 13.2%
Iron 34.5%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
 
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Green Bean Casserole

Green Beans and Lentil Casserole with Homemade Toasted Bread Croutons

I asked my mother the other day, what is the best way to cook green beans?  They can be tough and chewy if you try to steam them in the microwave, but can be limp, soggy, and watery if you boil them on the stove.  She agreed.  We weren’t sure.

How about baked green beans in a vegan casserole?  Sounds like a great dinner idea.

Apparently green bean casserole is a thing.  I needed to try it, and after testing it out, green beans in a casserole is my favourite way to cook green and yellow beans.

First you blanch the beans in salted boiling water for 5 minutes, then bake them in the casserole for 20-25 minutes in a rich savoury bubbling lentil gravy sauce.  The result?  Tender, flavourful green beans, really nicely done.  Sprinkle them with toasted croutons and almonds before baking, and you get a combo of crunchy, soft, and creamy textures, plus flavours of a holiday meal like Christmas or Thanksgiving.  Quite a delight.

Because of the homemade toasted bread croutons, and the rich lentil gravy base, this classic Thanksgiving side dish could be a light main course on a regular night, lots of protein here.  But, if you are like us, you probably will crave more carbs, so consider serving it with mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce, or my tomato parsley quinoa salad.

I think you should try making a warm and nicely textured green bean casserole too, the beans will be not too tough, and not too soggy, they will be just right.

Hopefully you choose this whole-foods plant-based green bean casserole recipe to try first. 🙂

FODMAP recipe rating – this is a low FODMAP recipe except for the croutons – use wheat free bread to make low FODMAP croutons.

Nutrition Facts
Fat-free Vegan Lentil Gravy in 10 minutes
Amount Per Serving (1 / 7th of recipe)
Calories 194
% Daily Value*
Sodium 172mg 7%
Potassium 598mg 17%
Total Carbohydrates 34g 11%
Dietary Fiber 12g 48%
Sugars 2g
Protein 14g 28%
Vitamin A 0.3%
Vitamin C 2.9%
Calcium 3.2%
Iron 29.7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Nutrition Facts
Green Bean Casserole With Croutons
Amount Per Serving (1 / 7th of recipe (no gravy))
Calories 135 Calories from Fat 27
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 3g 5%
Sodium 300mg 13%
Potassium 314mg 9%
Total Carbohydrates 21g 7%
Dietary Fiber 5g 20%
Sugars 5g
Protein 6g 12%
Vitamin A 13.6%
Vitamin C 14.8%
Calcium 8.5%
Iron 11.2%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

 

Whole-foods plant-based Green Bean Casserole
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Green Bean Casserole With Croutons

Course: Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: Vegan, Western
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 7 servings
Calories: 135 kcal
Author: Jeanette Whitten

Turn a classic Thanksgiving side dish, into a wfpb main dish, with lentil gravy, crispy croutons and no heavy cream.  The sauce is my 10 minute gorgeous vegan gravy.

This recipe is easily adjusted to be low FODMAP by using gluten free bread.

Ingredients

  • 24 oz green beans fresh or frozen
  • 4 cups Brown Lentil Gravy prepared, see recipe
  • 8 slices wheat bread or gluten free bread
  • 1 tbsp green onions chopped fresh or chives
  • 1 tsp sage chopped, or dried
  • 1 tsp thyme leaves chopped, or dried
  • 1 tsp rosemary chopped, or dried
  • 3 tbsp almond flour or blended or crushed almonds
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp black pepper freshly ground

Instructions

  1. Heat the oven to 375 degrees F.  Take out a large sized casserole dish, no lid required.

  2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil with a large pinch of salt to season the beans nicely; add the green beans. Cook for about 5 minutes, the beans should still be crisp, they will be cooked more in the oven. 

    Blanched Green Beans
  3. Prepare a batch of my 10 minute lentil Gorgeous Vegan Gravy.

    Low FODMAP Lentil Vegan Gravy
  4. Drain and put the green beans into the baking dish, pour the lentil gravy over top and stir to cover the beans.  

  5. Prepare topping: in a small bowl, combine chives, sage, thyme, rosemary, almond flour, pepper, and salt. 

  6. Prepare croutons: Toast whole grain bread, pile on a cutting board, and cut into medium sized squares, with a long bread knife.   Bread with seeds or crunchy bits in it adds another lovely texture element if you have any.  Use wheat free (low FODMAP) or gluten free bread if desired.

    Homemade Croutons
  7. Top beans with the croutons, and sprinkle the herb mix overtop. 

  8. Bake uncovered, until everything is hot and bubbling, about 20 to 25 minutes.

    Vegan Green Bean Casserole Topping

Recipe Notes

Fresh herbs add amazing flavour, but dried herbs work also!

Adapted from Tyler Florence.

Nutrition Facts
Green Bean Casserole With Croutons
Amount Per Serving (1 / 7th of recipe (no gravy))
Calories 135 Calories from Fat 27
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 3g 5%
Sodium 300mg 13%
Potassium 314mg 9%
Total Carbohydrates 21g 7%
Dietary Fiber 5g 20%
Sugars 5g
Protein 6g 12%
Vitamin A 13.6%
Vitamin C 14.8%
Calcium 8.5%
Iron 11.2%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
 
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Super Summer-Time Pasta Salad

Healthy Vegan Black Bean Pasta Salad

We eat this salad on days I have waited too long to start supper.  If I want to feed my family food in 15 minutes, this will do!  My kids favourite food is pasta, so they love it.

Try this great no-oil whole-foods plant-based meal salad for a pot-luck, party, or BBQ. Get your plant-based protein from beans and whole grain pasta.  People will ask you about the dressing, surprise them by saying “it’s only dried herbs and lemon!”.

With frozen peas, cucumber, canned or frozen corn, green onions, tomatoes, whole grain pasta and black olives this simple vegan dinner salad is fast, fresh, and easy to put together.

Jump to Recipe

Nutrition Facts
Super Summer-Time Pasta Salad
Amount Per Serving (1 / 10th of recipe)
Calories 351 Calories from Fat 63
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 7g 11%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Sodium 1275mg 53%
Potassium 719mg 21%
Total Carbohydrates 60g 20%
Dietary Fiber 11g 44%
Sugars 4g
Protein 15g 30%
Vitamin A 16%
Vitamin C 31.3%
Calcium 10.3%
Iron 25.7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Hot pasta thaws the peas, activates the seasonings

While the pasta cooks, gather the vegetables, stir them together, still frozen.  Add the drained pasta and the heat cooks the peas a touch, the pasta cools, things get juicy, the dried herbs release flavour, and your meal is ready to serve in minutes.

Why whole grain pasta?  Read How To Judge the Healthiness of Grain Products to learn more about why whole grain pasta is going to help your gut microbiome, prevent cancer, and help you lose weight.

Olives make this salad so satisfying

Olives are better for you than olive oil – filled with a small amount of healthy unsaturated fat – the way nature intended us to eat fat, packaged with fibre and phytonutrients.

Canada’s food guide is being revamped, I just gave my input, and was pleased to see they recommend we limit saturated fats and instead choose unsaturated fats.  Good news!

Olives cause your brain to signal “yup, we are satisfied and full here!”  You get that mouth oil feeling, olives curb cravings.

Vegan meal salad that kids love

Simplicity means kid friendly, and most kids really enjoy pasta.  I call this pasta salad, and focus on the pasta when serving it to my kids, more than the vegetables.  Once they taste a few bites, they gobble it all up, making us all happy.  🙂

Vegan Meal Proportions

See my article, How to Eat Vegan For Energy and Weight Loss I talk about the proportions of beans, greens, veggies and starches to eat to keep up your energy and lose weight!  Tip: eat this salad on a bed of spinach or other dark greens, if you want to feel extra energy.

 

Vegan Healthy Pasta Salad Fat-free Italian
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Super Summer-Time Pasta Salad

Course: Main Course, Pasta, Salad
Cuisine: Italian, Western
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 10 servings
Calories: 351 kcal
Author: Jeanette Whitten

This salad is a meal, a 15 minute vegan fat-free plant-based protein pasta salad dinner!  Black olives, cucumber, whole grain rotini pasta, frozen peas, corn, tomatoes, green onions plus Italian seasonings and lemon juice make an extraordinary delicious high fibre FRESH healthy pasta salad.  

Assemble the vegetables - including the frozen ones - add the drained pasta, stir and the temperature will become perfect to serve.  The peas will melt, even cook a bit, the pasta will cool, it's awesomely fast.

We are always surprised by how tasty this simple combination is.  It's just perfect.  Kids love the sweet peas, salty seasonings, and the pasta!

Ingredients

Pasta

Vegetables

  • 3 cups cucumber diced, 1 large is about 3 cups
  • 2 cups tomatoes cherry quartered, or large diced whole tomatoes
  • 4 green onions sliced
  • 1 1/2 cups corn frozen, or canned
  • 398 ml black olives pitted canned, whole, no-oil, add a splash of olive juice to the salad, then drain the rest.
  • 1080 ml black beans can drained
  • 2 cups peas frozen

Dressing

  • 1 tbsp onion powder
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tbsp basil dried
  • 1 tbsp oregano dried
  • 1 tsp salt depending on how salty your canned items already are
  • 6 tbsp lemon juice fresh squeezed for vitamin C if you can!

Instructions

  1. Heat water for pasta.  We like whole grain rotini for this, the rotini shape holds the seasoning well and doesn't get soggy as leftovers.  Once water is boiling, add the pasta, stir.  Cook to be firm - al dente, following package directions, don't overcook.

  2. While the water heats, dice the cucumber, tomatoes, green onions and add to an extra large bowl.

  3. Open the cans of black beans, corn (if using canned) and black olives.

    Add corn with it's juice (max 1/3 cup) to the bowl, I like to splash some of the black olive juice into the salad bowl too.  If you are using frozen corn it will create some juice when it hits the hot pasta, so don't worry.

  4. Add the drained black beans and olives. 

  5. Add frozen peas - it is important that they are frozen at this point because they cool the pasta.

  6. Add seasonings and lemon juice to a small bowl or measuring cup, stir to combine, taste test and adjust to your preference, pour over salad, and stir  through.

    Easy Healthy WFPB Bean Tomato Cucumber Pasta Salad
  7. Once pasta is done, drain pasta well, while it is still hot add the pasta to the vegetables and dressing.

  8. Stir to combine. Wait a couple minutes for the herbs to release their flavours, and serve!

Recipe Notes

 

Variations: 

Sub herbs for a dried Italian seasoning purchased mix.  Store mixes usually contain salt, so don't add any extra salt.  Read the label, choose a mix that doesn't contain added oils.

Sub cucumber for orange and yellow peppers, zucchini, or romaine lettuce.  As long as you keep the peas, corn, tomatoes and olives other vegetables work well.

Omit the Pasta: This tastes great without the pasta as well, as a bean salad, serve with toast, pitas, or rice, or just with spinach.

Vinegar: I'm curious if a vinegar would make this even nicer.  Afraid to try, because my kids aren't into vinegar much yet and we've got something here that works.

If anyone tries adding vinegar, please let me know!!  Personally, I'd use a balsamic.

 

Nutrition Facts
Super Summer-Time Pasta Salad
Amount Per Serving (1 / 10th of recipe)
Calories 351 Calories from Fat 63
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 7g 11%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Sodium 1275mg 53%
Potassium 719mg 21%
Total Carbohydrates 60g 20%
Dietary Fiber 11g 44%
Sugars 4g
Protein 15g 30%
Vitamin A 16%
Vitamin C 31.3%
Calcium 10.3%
Iron 25.7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

 

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Deliciously complex, tasty, healthy baked, stuffed acorn squash. Cranberry rice and spinach stuffing, Garam Masala East Indian dessert peppery spice. UNIQUE!

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Brussels Sprouts, Quinoa and Lentil Pilaf – Orange Cranberry Apple Sauce

Easy Vegan Quinoa and Lentil Pilaf with Brussels Sprouts and Orange Apple Cranberry Thyme Sauce

This whole-foods plant-based, fat-free, no-oil healthy brussels sprouts with lentils and quinoa recipe is crazy easy.

The quinoa and lentil pilaf in one pot is a delicious staple that can serve as a vegan starch and protein base for many of your meals.

Here, I’ve added my orange thyme dressing, but other vegetables and sauces will work well too.

Jump to Recipe

 

Lentils and Quinoa in Only 20 Minutes

Cook dry sprouted lentils and dry quinoa together, in the same pot, they take the same amount of time – and in 15 – 20 minutes you’ll have a pilaf of lentils and quinoa that is fluffy and ready for a vegetable and a sauce.

You can dress the quinoa and lentils up in so many ways.

Boil, Steam or Microwave Brussel Sprouts

Cook a huge batch of brussels sprouts for this, they go perfectly.

Add Orange Thyme Cranberry Tahini Dressing

The lentils and quinoa are going to be pretty boring on their own, but look through the sauces/dressings on this site and pick one and it becomes a different dish each time.

I recommend my Sweet Zing Orange Thyme Dressing.

You can click on the “sauce” tag in the sidebar to view a list of sauces.  Or use the search feature on the site and search for “sauce” or “dressing”.

Mmmm, just looking at these pictures again now, I remember how good this was!

The sauce has a lot of tasty ingredients – orange juice, diced apple, sesame paste (tahini), green onions, chia seeds, dried cranberries… it’s great.  Very quick, easy and simple to make too.

My kids liked the pilaf and brussels sprouts without the sauce, instead of the dressing, one added lemon juice, the other  loads of cranberry sauce from a can.

When I eat beans and rice, or lentils with quinoa I feel like I am living harmoniously with our planet, and usually surprised at how great they taste, and how satisfied I feel after.

I hope at least someone else can relate to what I am talking about.

Bringing peace through plants…  🙂

 

Brussels sprouts quinoa lentils with orange vegan sauce
Print

Brussels Sprouts, Quinoa, and Lentil Pilaf

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Western
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 243 kcal
Author: Jeanette Whitten

Cook sprouted lentils and quinoa in the same pot in 15 minutes, add brussels sprouts, a sweet tangy orange, apple, cranberry sauce and it's a beautiful meal.

My husband and I aim to eat at least 1/2 - 1 cup of beans/legumes a day each and between 1/4 cup and 1/2 cup for each of our kids.  This recipe will produce more lentils than quinoa so that your meal can be bean strong.  

Beans are an excellent carb - because they contain both carbs and protein and so many important nutrients.  Feel confident eating beans - they are going to make you so strong and give you energy!

Ingredients

  • 5 cups water
  • 1 1/2 cups dried lentils sprouted lentils because they cook fastest, read the packages, select the fast cooking lentils.
  • 1 cup quinoa dried
  • 8 cups brussels sprouts
  • Orange Thyme Dressing recipe prepared, consider doubling the recipe to have enough for leftovers. One recipe makes 4 servings.

Instructions

  1. Heat water in a medium sized pot, on high.

  2. Add quinoa and sprouted lentils, stir.  Usually the water doesn't need to be boiling, check your instructions.  Follow package directions about rinsing, some brands require rinsing to remove bitterness or dirt or pesticides.  I often forget, hoping a reminder here helps you remember.  

    Here are the brands I used - both were available at Costco, other brands will work, check that the cooking time on the lentils is similar to the quinoa - about 15 minutes.  It seems that sprouted lentils usually cook faster than non-sprouted lentils.  

    My sprouted lentils say simmer for 8 minutes then let sit for 4 minutes.  My quinoa says simmer for 15 minutes.  I like lentils soft rather than chewy so I am happy to cook the lentils a little longer.

    Image of Quinoa and Sprouted Lentils in Packages truRoots
  3. Once boiling, stir, reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 15 minutes or according to package directions.  If your lentils are going to take longer, then start them first and add the quinoa when there is 15 minutes cooking time left.

    How to Cook Lentils With Quinoa
  4. Meanwhile, steam brussels sprouts in a steamer pot on the stove (makes them so juicy and tender, mmmm my favourite way) or in a microwave steamer like this large Epicure silicone steamer.    You could also boil them in water, which is what I did this time.  Any of these methods takes about 15 minutes.

  5. Now prepare the sauce - the fat-free no-oil Orange Thyme Dressing for example.  It's going to take you 10 minutes.

    Tahini green onions and craisins in a vegan fat-free sauce.
  6. Once the pilaf is done, stir it to combine, it should be fluffy with no moisture.  If there is water left, keep it on low for 5 minutes at a time until it is dried out, and reduce the water amount in the future.  The lentils spread around the edge with the quinoa in the centre during cooking.

    Cooked Quinoa and Lentils in One Pot
  7. The pilaf should look like this once done.

    Image of cooked Quinoa lentil pilaf vegan recipe
  8. Serve the pilaf, with brussels sprouts and a generous portion of sauce.

    Brussels sprouts quinoa lentils with orange vegan sauce

Recipe Notes

Enjoy!!

Sometimes my pilaf takes longer to cook - closer to 25 minutes, even though the bags said 15. I probably use a slightly different temperature, or measuring cups.  I just keep cooking it until it is dry, and it always comes out fine.

Nutrition Facts
Brussels Sprouts, Quinoa, and Lentil Pilaf
Amount Per Serving (1 / 8th of recipe)
Calories 243 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 1g 2%
Sodium 33mg 1%
Potassium 805mg 23%
Total Carbohydrates 43g 14%
Dietary Fiber 15g 60%
Sugars 2g
Protein 15g 30%
Vitamin A 13.6%
Vitamin C 92.6%
Calcium 7.2%
Iron 27.3%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

What's Special About VeganEnvy Recipes?  

VeganEnvy recipes are easy, low-fat, whole-foods, plant-based and nutrition rich.  Real food my family eats, and techniques we use to cook.

I choose ingredients that are proven to prevent and reverse disease, based on scientific studies, such as those reviewed on nutritionfacts.org and findings published by whole-foods plant-based (WFPB) experts featured in the Forks Over Knives (FOK) and What the Health documentaries FOK trailer.

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Meatless Marinara Sauce With Protein

Vegan Italian Tomato Pasta Sauce with Whole-Foods Plant-Based Protein and No-Oil

Cover your Spaghetti and other favourite pastas with my family’s best healthy vegan fat-free marinara sauce.  Lentils and chickpeas make it thick, and full of iron, fibre and phytonutrients.  Add some spinach (fresh or frozen) to get a darker color, and more nutrition.

Oregano, basil, garlic and onion, are a beautiful Italian combination that has lasted centuries.  Modernize your greasy sauces of the past with this oil-free, meatless version of a marinara sauce, and fill your belly with fibre and taste at the same time.

Jump to Recipe

School is out here, and I just fed this sauce as leftovers for lunch to my daughters and their friend.  The friend made a point of complementing me about how tasty the sauce is.  Thanks for the feedback kid!  Now I share it with the internet…

This is a great whole-foods plant-based wfpb recipe for kids!

Please enjoy!

 
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Vegan Healthy Marinara Sauce on Spaghetti
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Meatless Marinara With Protein - No-Oil, Vegan, Tomato Sauce and Pasta

Course: Main Course, Pasta
Cuisine: Italian
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 354 kcal
Author: Jeanette Whitten

With lentils and chickpeas this no-oil vegan Italian tomato based spaghetti sauce recipe replaces a traditional meat based pasta sauce, with bold flavour!   I've tested it on many non-vegans and they don't even realize, except wonder why it is so fat-free and lean.  

Use this simple recipe as a dependable base and add additional items if you like, such as mushrooms or green peppers.

Ingredients

  • 375 g whole grain pasta whole wheat spaghetti is our favourite for this sauce
  • 540 ml can chickpeas drained
  • 540 ml can lentils drained
  • 2 garlic cloves medium
  • 796 ml can diced tomatoes with juice, or whole fresh tomatoes
  • 1 tsp oregano dried
  • 2 tsp basil dried
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 sweet onion white, medium, in chunks
  • 130 g frozen spinach thawed, nuggets work great
  • 156 ml tomato paste can

Instructions

  1. Put a large pot of pasta water on to boil.  No salt or oil are necessary.  No oil cooking, go!  Read more here about why we cook with no-oil.

  2. Drain canned lentils and chickpeas.  Consider reserving the juice (called aqua faba) in the fridge as an egg replacement for future baking - like for my VeganEnvy.com amazing chocolate birthday cake recipe.

  3. In a food processor - add drained chickpeas, drained lentils, garlic cloves, canned diced tomatoes (with juice), oregano, basil, onion powder, salt, onion chunks, and thawed spinach nuggets.  Blend on high until beans are no longer recognizable.

  4. I like to use frozen spinach nuggets, so I can easily portion out a little if I want - I always have some on hand in my freezer, like these ones.  I got them a Wal-mart.

    Frozen Spinach Nuggets
  5. Empty sauce into a medium sized pot on medium heat.  This sauce will splatter once it starts to bubble, so be prepared to cover it to protect your stove and yourself.  

    Blended lentils and chickpeas in vegan no-oil tomato sauce.
  6. Once the sauce is bubbling, reduce heat to low, stir, cover and let simmer for 5 more minutes so that the onion is cooked through.  

  7. In the meantime, add whole grain spaghetti to the boiling pasta water.  Set timer to cook according to directions, usually about 10 minutes.

  8. Once the the 5 min on the sauce is up, while the pasta is cooking, stir the tomato paste into the sauce.  The tomato paste makes the sauce thicker, so there is no excess liquid.  It also adds a lovely rich red color and taste.  Simmer a few more minutes or until pasta is ready.  

  9. Drain pasta and serve piled with generous portions of this delicious sauce!

    Plates of spaghetti with meatless vegan healthy tomato sauce.

Recipe Notes

Serving Ideas

Sprinkle with vegan parmesan cheese.

Vegetable side suggestions: steamed frozen peas and corn, broccoli, or Brussels sprouts.
Salad suggestion: spinach salad and balsamic dressing.

Bon Appetit!

 

Nutrition Facts
Meatless Marinara With Protein - No-Oil, Vegan, Tomato Sauce and Pasta
Amount Per Serving (1 / 8th of recipe with whole grain pasta)
Calories 354 Calories from Fat 18
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 2g 3%
Sodium 650mg 27%
Potassium 941mg 27%
Total Carbohydrates 69g 23%
Dietary Fiber 11g 44%
Sugars 8g
Protein 18g 36%
Vitamin A 46.6%
Vitamin C 21.4%
Calcium 13%
Iron 38.6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

 

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Satisfying Split-Pea Soup

Vegan Smoky Split-Pea Soup, No-Oil

Get energized from one tasty bowl, with easy and delicious vegan fat-free dried green pea soup.  Potatoes, barley, and carrots, create a cozy, comfy, cheerful soup.  Like pea soup you may have eaten as a meat-eating child – but better!

Powered by healthy dried peas and potatoes, lots of iron, energy, fibre, and vitamin A, get ready to feel and look fantastic.

Veganized food usually tastes better than non-vegan, doesn’t it?  We vegans spend time to figure out which spices and vegetables make a meal delicious, and don’t rely on animal fat for taste.

Two special ingredients in this recipe, if you can find them: imitation bacon bits, and smoked paprika.  Both make the vegan pea soup taste smoky, and like you used a ham bone (I hope it is not offensive to any vegans for me to say that).

The imitation bacon bits swell up like pink meat crumbs, so be ready for that!  It was a little shocking for us, as non-meat-eaters. If you don’t like soy bacon bits, the soup will still taste great without them.  I didn’t figure out to add them until recently.

This fast, easy, and simple, best, split-pea soup, will be ready in just over an hour, rather than the more traditional two.

Jump to Recipe

 

Beauty

The dried parsley gives it a nice green colour, but this vegan split-pea soup’s beauty, is not from the way it looks, but, from the satisfying taste, and chewy texture.

Like your body on whole-foods plant-based no-oil recipes – beautiful on the healthy inside.  Oh, wait, you will be gorgeous on the outside too… and you are being beautiful to living creatures. That’s gorgeous too.

Barley

My nutrition calculator classified barley as a health food – health food? – barley was a staple of european diets, why did people stop eating it?  I don’t have time to research that now (got more recipes to publish)… I’m curious though.

Barley bread apparently was common in the British Isles dating back to the Iron Age, that’s over 3000 years ago.  Barley is a natural, unprocessed, whole grain.

Barley contains gluten, so if you’ve had a positive gluten blood test result, then swap it for long grain brown rice (cooks faster than short grain), or more potatoes.

If the blood test was negative (like mine was) consider that you might just be gluten sensitive because you eat too many low fibre and inflammatory animal products.  That’s what happened to me; before going vegan cured my IBS and gluten sensitivity.  Try increasing your fruit and veggies, skip the animal and processed foods, and when your gut is healthy the gluten sensitivity disappears.

Back to Basics

I always think of that nursery rhyme/song when I cook this:-

Pease porridge hot, pease porridge cold,

Pease porridge in the pot, nine days old;

Some like it hot, some like it cold,

Some like it in the pot, nine days old.

and I think, yes!  Soup made from dried peas, potatoes, and barley, what people lived on for centuries!

We are getting back to healthy basics here.

In our house this soup never lasts nine days though, it has disappeared sooner than that. 🙂

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Image of vegan no-oil split-pea soup close up in a bowl.
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Satisfying Split-Pea Soup

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Western
Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 306 kcal
Author: Jeanette Whitten

This soup is a favourite in our family, and we have been eating it for years.  Pot barley is such a chewy, tasty addition, but the soup is still great if you don't have any.  

This recipe allows you to cook the soup as you chop and add the ingredients in the order specified. Make sure it is bubbling the entire time, and you will be finished in 1 hour and 15 min instead of 2 hours. 

If it gets too thick, add hot water, a cup at a time.

Ingredients

  • 4 cups vegetable broth store bought cartons work great
  • 8 cups water
  • 2 cups green split peas dried
  • 1/2 cup barley dried, pot (hulled) barley is less processed than pearl barley. Substitute long grain brown rice if you want.
  • 1/4 tsp celery seed
  • 1/4 tsp thyme or 2 bay leaves, discard before eating
  • 4 cups potatoes cubed, skin on, 1 1/2" diced
  • 1 onion sweet chopped
  • 2 cups carrots chopped
  • 2 celery stalk thinly sliced
  • 2 tbsp parsley flakes
  • 1 tbsp basil
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika use smoked! Replaces the taste of smoked ham.
  • 1/4 cup imitation bacon bits vegan, ours are made of soy and paprika
  • salt to taste
  • pepper fresh ground, to taste

Instructions

  1. Bring broth, water, celery seed, bay leaves, rinsed peas and barley to a boil in a LARGE soup pot. Reduce to a simmer. 

  2. Dice and add potatoes, raise heat to high, once bubbling, lower heat again.

    Image of chopped red potatoes on a cutting board.
  3. Chop onions and carrots, add to soup and raise heat to high, once boiling, lower heat again. Tip: I like to food process the onion alone into small pieces, then add carrots, and slowly process until the carrots are in larger pieces than the onion. Takes 45 seconds this way. 

    Image of chopped onion and carrots in a food processor.
  4. Add the sliced celery, parsley, basil, smoked paprika, vegan bacon bits and salt.

    Image of vegan split-pea soup ingredients in pot before cooking.
  5. Cover and simmer on low for 15 more minutes.  Total time since the peas started boiling should be at least 75 minutes.  

  6. Taste test, and if the peas are soft, serve in bowls, with salt, whole grain crackers, and freshly ground pepper.

    Image of vegan no-oil split-pea soup close up in a bowl.
Nutrition Facts
Satisfying Split-Pea Soup
Amount Per Serving (1 / 8th of recipe)
Calories 306 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 1g 2%
Sodium 537mg 22%
Potassium 1168mg 33%
Total Carbohydrates 59g 20%
Dietary Fiber 18g 72%
Sugars 8g
Protein 17g 34%
Vitamin A 119.7%
Vitamin C 21.3%
Calcium 9.7%
Iron 35.7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Wonderful White Bean and Walnut Sauce with Linguine and Asparagus

Oil-Free Vegan Pesto White Sauce for Linguine and Asparagus

It is really easy to go dairy-free these days.  Us vegans are inventing more and more new ways to use healthy plant-based foods in traditional recipes.  Recently found out you are lactose intolerant?  This website is for you!  Look around…

For example, if you would like to have a milk-free sauce for your pasta, or maybe you are trying to lose weight and avoid fat – here is a vegan, creamy fat-free white sauce recipe to add to your bag of tricks.

It has pesto ingredients like basil, garlic, and lemon, but is no-oil, with healthy walnuts instead.   Did you know walnuts slowed the growth of cancer tumours in studies?  White kidney beans make it thick, you don’t need any flour – so it is gluten-free.

Forget about taking time stirring on the stove, this sauce is easier than that, blend the ingredients, and DONE.

This vegan white sauce recipe is better than alfredo sauce, I think you will find it very delicious and satisfying.

Jump to Recipe

 
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If you are in Canada – I recommend these products for your lemon and pepper, from Epicure.  Click image to view information.

Bring together the wonderful flavours of basil and garlic in a creamy pesto sauce, with fresh linguine, and crispy asparagus, for a healthy taste of Italy!

Image of creamy vegan white sauce with linguine pasta and asparagus on a plate.
Print

Wonderful White Bean and Walnut Sauce with Asparagus and Linguine

Course: Sauce
Cuisine: Italian
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 340 kcal
Author: Jeanette Whitten

This sauce has a pesto flavour and is simply delicious with basil, garlic, lemon and healthy walnuts instead of processed oil. 

It is so easy to make, and clean up, this vegan white pasta sauce takes only 5 minutes in a blender.

Linguine has more surface area than spaghetti, and will hold more sauce, so works very well and asparagus complements the lemon and pesto ingredients.

Ingredients

  • 375 g whole grain pasta linguine
  • 2.25 pounds asparagus
  • 540 ml white kidney beans
  • 1/2 cup soy milk or other unsweetened non-dairy milk
  • 1 tbsp basil
  • 2 garlic cloves cut in half
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 3 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup water hot, from pasta cooking

Epicure Items

  • steamer Available in Canada only. There are many sizes, made from a durable silicone, these steamers are awesome.

Instructions

  1. Boil water and cook pasta according to package instructions.

    Image of linguini pasta boiling in a pot of water on the stove.
  2. Wash, cut off ends, and cut asparagus into 2 inch lengths.

  3. Microwave asparagus in a microwave steamer.  If you are in Canada, I recommend the Epicure steamers. See link in ingredients.

    Image of cut asparagus in a microwave steamer.
  4. In a high speed blender, blend white kidney beans with soy milk, basil, garlic cloves, oregano, salt, walnuts, nutritional yeast, lemon juice. 

    Image of vegan white pesto sauce ingredients in blender, before blending.
  5. Add hot pasta cooking water to warm and thin to desired consistency.

    Image of blended oil free vegan pesto white sauce made from white kidney beans.
  6. Drain pasta, plate with asparagus, and immediately spoon creamy pesto sauce over steaming pasta.  Or, if the pasta has cooled, microwave the sauce first in a small dish, to warm it, then spoon over and serve.

    Image of two plates of vegan creamy pesto linguine with asparagus

Recipe Notes

Serving Suggestions: fresh ground pepper and additional lemon juice.

Nutrition Facts
Wonderful White Bean and Walnut Sauce with Asparagus and Linguine
Amount Per Serving (1 / 8th of recipe)
Calories 340 Calories from Fat 54
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 6g 9%
Sodium 305mg 13%
Potassium 739mg 21%
Total Carbohydrates 58g 19%
Dietary Fiber 8g 32%
Sugars 3g
Protein 18g 36%
Vitamin A 20.3%
Vitamin C 10.8%
Calcium 10.2%
Iron 35.7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

 

JOIN the VeganEnvy.com Community 

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Lovely Lentil and Brown Rice Soup

Vegan Lentil and Brown Rice Soup With Tomatoes and Zucchini

Brown rice and lentils make for a chewy and filling base in this delicious soup, without any of the cholesterol or fat that meat has, and plant power means no acid reflux or indigestion either.

The tomatoes, basil, oregano, and thyme will fill your kitchen with comforting and inviting aromas.  If you don’t have zucchini, carrots also work well.

This vegan lentil rice soup is so easy to make, with only a single pot to clean up, yet looks and tastes complex and divine.

 
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Image of a close up of vegan lentil and brown rice soup in a large pot.
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Lovely Lentil and Brown Rice Soup

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Western
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 297 kcal
Author: Jeanette Whitten

Soup can definitely be a meal, and this soup will nourish and delight with it's deliciousness.  

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Add vegetable broth and water to a large soup pot on medium high heat.

  2. Add ingredients in order listed: lentils, brown rice, undrained can of diced tomatoes, chopped onion, diced celery stalk, minced garlic cloves, basil, oregano, thyme, bay leaf, parsley, salt and zucchini.

    Reducing heat to medium once bubbling.

  3. Once all ingredients are added, reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for 20 more minutes or until the lentils and rice are both tender.  Remove and discard the bay leaf.

  4. If necessary, thin the soup with additional hot broth or water or ice cubes when serving.

    Serve with fresh ground black pepper, salt to taste, and optionally whole grain crackers.

Recipe Notes

If you don't have zucchini, carrots also work well.

Nutrition Facts
Lovely Lentil and Brown Rice Soup
Amount Per Serving (1 / 8th of recipe)
Calories 297 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 1g 2%
Sodium 782mg 33%
Potassium 901mg 26%
Total Carbohydrates 56g 19%
Dietary Fiber 17g 68%
Sugars 6g
Protein 16g 32%
Vitamin A 10.6%
Vitamin C 29.4%
Calcium 9%
Iron 29.9%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

 

 

 

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Butternut Squash Apple Galette – Whole-Foods Plant-Based

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Creamy Coleslaw Vinaigrette Salad Dressing

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DELICIOUS VEGANSAUCE. SPICY CHIPOTLE OIL-FREE VEGAN MAYO! Spicy, smoky, dairy-free, eggless, egg-free, chipotle, HEALTHY, fat-free vegan mayo recipe.

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Great Tofu Recipe Ideas For Dinner

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What's Special About VeganEnvy Recipes?  

VeganEnvy recipes are easy, low-fat, whole-foods, plant-based and nutrition rich.  Real food my family eats, and techniques we use to cook.

I choose ingredients that are proven to prevent and reverse disease, based on scientific studies, such as those reviewed on nutritionfacts.org and findings published by whole-foods plant-based (WFPB) experts featured in the Forks Over Knives (FOK) and What the Health documentaries FOK trailer.

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Fiery Maple Sweet Potato Bowl, No Oil

Colorful sweet potatoes, maple flavoured chipotle chickpeas, earthy mushrooms, vibrant greens, creamy avocado and a fiery vegan mayo makes for a spicy and healthful vegan meal.  Use tofu cubes instead of chickpeas, for an equally spicy protein option.

Jump to Fiery Maple Sweet Potato Vegan Bowls Recipe

 

Jump to Fiery Vegan Mayo Recipe

How to make a colourful vegan sweet potato bowl

Start by putting peeled sweet potatoes on to boil.

I recommend you cut them in half, to speed cooking time – I didn’t, and they were a little undercooked.

Second, prepare your mushrooms – dried or fresh.

You can use dried mushrooms, or fresh.  I like to have dried mushrooms in my pantry, they don’t spoil, and I always have some on hand.

Dried mushrooms are so amazingly excellent for flavoring soups.

They tasted great rehydrated in this recipe as well, a bit chewier than fresh though.  The broth you get from rehydrating mushrooms is so flavorful, save it if you can!

I bought this huge container of gourmet dried mushrooms from Costco, and followed the instructions for rehydrating, first in hot water, then boiling.  I used the microwave, thinking it would be faster and easier.  If you use a microwave too, be careful the water doesn’t boil over.  Next time, I think I will use a pot on the stove instead, so I can boil the mushrooms longer and make them less chewy.

If you are using fresh mushrooms,

even better!

See the recipe notes for instructions.

Saute them, with some diced white onions if you have any, in a large skillet.  Remove to a separate dish and use the same skillet for the chickpeas and/or tofu.

Third, make the chickpeas and tofu.

Either / both taste excellent in this recipe, separately or together.

Chop some green onions, add to a large skillet with soy sauce and fresh ground black pepper and add the drained chickpeas or tofu.

Add in the spices, and mushroom broth.  This is where you might use tofu instead.

Here, I am making chickpeas for my husband and I, and plain tofu for the kids – because one of my daughters doesn’t like chickpeas (we think she is crazy for this, but love her anyways).

These spices are going to fire it up whether you use chickpeas, tofu, or both.

 

While my chickpeas saute, I heated up the kids tofu for 3 – 4 minutes in the pot of boiling water for the sweet potatoes.

I could also have done this in the mushroom water, didn’t think of that until later, that would be even better, yum!

First, reserve about 5 cubes of cold tofu for the Fiery Vegan Mayo Sauce, throw them in a small blender instead of the boiling water.

Prepare the fiery vegan mayo sauce.

With tofu, cashews, a touch of lemon juice, chipotle powder or hot sauce, smoked paprika, soy sauce and some non-dairy unsweetened milk.

I use soy milk, cause it’s my fave.

Lastly put the bowls together!

First set down a bed of energy boosting greens, like baby spinach.  I used romaine lettuce for my girls.

Then, create rows of the vibrant orange sweet potatoes, spicy maple chickpeas and/or tofu, dark flavourful mushrooms, bright green sliced avocados and drizzle generously with the fiery creamy sauce.

It’s a fat free sauce after all, and so spicy good, use a generous amount!

 

Each color in the bowl, provides different antioxidants that you need.

With a vegan bowl recipe like this, eating a rainbow of foods is easy and you are going to feel great after this medly of nutritious foods.

A spicy, sweet, beautiful bowl of taste, and health!

 

Image of two fiery chipotle maple sweet potato tofu chickpea mushrooms vegan healthy bowls.
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Fiery Maple Sweet Potato Chickpea / Tofu Bowl

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Western, Whole Foods
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 361 kcal
Author: Jeanette Whitten

Spicy and sweet, a satisfying bowl with chickpeas or tofu, avocado, sweet potato and mushrooms on a bed of greens.  

Serve with Fiery Vegan Mayo sauce.


Ingredients

  • 3 sweet potatoes medium, peeled and boiled
  • 2 tsp soy sauce
  • 4 tbsp green onions diced, about 4
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper fresh ground
  • 3 cups mushrooms dried or fresh, shiitake, portabella
  • 350 g extra firm tofu or skip and double the chickpeas
  • 540 ml chickpeas drained, or skip and double the tofu
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp chipotle powder smoked jalapeno powder, or hot sauce
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1 avocado thinly sliced
  • 8 cups spinach or other dark greens

Instructions

Sweet Potato

  1. Put a pot of water on to boil.  Peel the sweet potatoes and cut in half (to speed cooking time).  Add to the boiling water.  They should take about 10 - 15 minutes to cook.  Test with a fork and when soft, remove them to a cutting board, slice into rounds just before adding to bowls.

Dried Mushrooms (Fresh Mushrooms? - see recipe notes for instructions)

  1. Follow instructions for re-hydrating the dried mushrooms.  I use the microwave.   Add mushrooms to the bowls when you plate them.  No need to saute dried mushrooms, they are flavourful on their own.  Use the broth to cook the tofu / chickpeas.  Reserve extra delicious broth for future cooking.

Chickpeas / Tofu

  1. While the sweet potatoes cook, drain the chickpeas / cube the tofu.

    Reserve some tofu cubes for the sauce.

  2. Add green onions, soy sauce, and fresh pepper to a large skillet on medium heat.

  3. Add chickpeas / tofu, paprika, chipotle powder, and cumin,  and stir to combine.  Saute for 2 - 3 minutes, stir and flip.  Add 1/4 cup mushroom broth to keep from sticking and add flavour.  

  4. Add maple syrup.  Stir and flip tofu cubes until the liquid is gone.  Turn off heat.  

Build the Bowls and Serve!

  1. Place a bed of spinach in each bowl, make rows of sweet potato, sliced avocado, chickpeas / tofu and mushrooms and generously drizzle with Fiery Vegan Mayo sauce.

Recipe Notes

To use fresh mushrooms, slice and saute with 1 - 2 tsp of soy sauce or tamari, and some black pepper, then remove to a separate dish.

You may want to add a diced white onion - if you do: saute until the onion caramelizes and the mushrooms are tender and edges start to brown.

Once the mushrooms are done, use the same skillet to cook the tofu / chickpeas.

Nutrition Facts
Fiery Maple Sweet Potato Chickpea / Tofu Bowl
Amount Per Serving (1 / 6th)
Calories 361 Calories from Fat 81
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 9g 14%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Sodium 219mg 9%
Potassium 1250mg 36%
Total Carbohydrates 57g 19%
Dietary Fiber 14g 56%
Sugars 10g
Protein 16g 32%
Vitamin A 271.9%
Vitamin C 22.5%
Calcium 14%
Iron 32.7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

 

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Fiery Vegan Mayo Sauce

Course: Sauce
Cuisine: Vegan
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 42 kcal
Author: Jeanette Whitten

A fiery smoky sauce that looks and tastes awesome on vegan bowls!  A great sauce like this, changes boring to delicious.  Use tamari instead of soy sauce to make it gluten free.

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup extra firm tofu
  • 2 tbsp soy milk unsweetened
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 3 tbsp cashews
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce or tamari to make gluten free
  • 1/4 tsp chipotle powder or hot sauce
  • 3/4 tsp paprika smoked
  • 3/4 tsp onion powder

Instructions

  1. Add tofu, soy milk, lemon juice, cashews, soy sauce or tamari, chipotle powder or hot sauce, smoked paprika, and onion powder to a small high speed blender. 

  2. Blend until smooth. Drizzle generously over bowls before serving.

Nutrition Facts
Fiery Vegan Mayo Sauce
Amount Per Serving (1 / 6th)
Calories 42 Calories from Fat 18
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 2g 3%
Sodium 179mg 7%
Potassium 72mg 2%
Total Carbohydrates 2g 1%
Protein 2g 4%
Vitamin A 3.9%
Vitamin C 0.4%
Calcium 1.2%
Iron 3.5%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
 
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Please, help others, and our planet – share this content on social media!

BEST SLOW COOKER CHILI for a CROWD

Vegan Simple and Easy Slow Cooker Chili with a smoky, spicy taste.

Simple and easy vegan chili in a crock pot.  A smoky tasting vegetable chili, with kidney and black beans, lentils, green and red peppers, onion, corn, mushrooms, and diced tomatoes.

The best vegetarian chili you have ever had.

I have been creating whole foods plant based vegetarian chili recipe variations since 2013, and this is the current champion!

This vegetarian chili has a perfect mix of my custom chili spice blend with just the right mix of spices, heat, and chili powder.

Kids and adults both like it.

Make this chili for a party, or make it for yourself.  You can adjust the servings on this page and the recipe will recalculate for you.

Jump to Recipe

Nutrition Facts
Vegetarian Chili – the BEST SLOW COOKER CHILI for a CROWD
Amount Per Serving (1 / 12th of recipe)
Calories 245 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 1g 2%
Sodium 860mg 36%
Potassium 892mg 25%
Total Carbohydrates 45g 15%
Dietary Fiber 16g 64%
Sugars 5g
Protein 15g 30%
Vitamin A 30.3%
Vitamin C 39.5%
Calcium 8.9%
Iron 33.4%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Smoked paprika

This oil-free whole foods plant based (wfpb) chili recipe uses smoked paprika for the smoky flavour, so if you haven’t tried smoked paprika before, run out and get some!

We found our smoked paprika at Costco and use it all the time in many of our meals, most grocery stores and supermarkets carry it.

No fake food in this recipe.

Chili doesn’t need any fake vegan meat to taste awesome, I’m not dissing on fake meat here – I use it occasionally – but, this chili is pure wholesome whole foods.

It may be vegan chili, without oil, but it looks like it has meat in it.

The key is choosing dark lentils, darker lentils will look like ground beef.

We use a lentil trio from Costco – I will link to it in the recipe ingredients – it has nice dark coloured lentils in it.  I find canned lentils are usually too light in color.

These dried lentils only take 8 minutes to cook!  If they are a bit chewy when you put them in the slow cooker, that is good, because they will absorb liquid and make the chili thicker.

It is worth it to caramelize your onions before adding them to the crock pot.

Really, it doesn’t take much longer to saute the onions in a bit of water on the stove (no oil required), because you need to dice the peppers anyways.

Food processor, or chop your onions, put them in a frying or metal saute pan, then, at the same time as they cook, dice the peppers.

Be triple efficient – start your lentils cooking first!  Remember, these lentils only take 8 min to cook.

 

Here is the chili before being cooked.

 

 

The spice mix is perfection.

When we make this deluxe vegan chili for a crowd, we make extra spice and save it for smaller batches later 

 

Here is the chili after being cooked.

 

 
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Wherever you are feeding a large crowd, consider making this party food chili recipe.

Take this chili to work, pot-luck lunches, family events, functions, any gathering of hungry people is going to be well served by this vegan dish!

Everyone who likes chili, loves this delicious smoky bean filled chili, it is great for non-vegans.

A vegan party spread with this chili:

 

Serve your chili with some whole grain buns, and some dips and spreads:

like homemade guacamolehomemade salsa, and vegan onion dip, that I made here.

See my irresistible peanut butter cookies and no sugar chocolate bean brownies on this table too?  Try them too!

Get your party on!

How about taking this vegan chili to your next social gathering?

 

Greg, my husband, took this vegan chili to his office, for a work pot-luck lunch.

He had the chili in a slow cooker, people started commenting how good the chili was smelling at 10am!

 

By lunchtime those non-vegans couldn’t wait to dig in.

Greg is totally casual, so he doesn’t mention when something is vegan.

So people at his work are eating this chili and loving it, and someone comments how the chili is vegetarian (’cause some people know Greg is vegan).

Someone else is like “really, there is no meat in this?!”  just stunned, “like wow, how is that even a thing?”

Then of course, people ask “why no meat?” and Greg gets to explain how he is vegan, and he wants to avoid cancer, and heart disease, and he feels awesome, and blah, blah, and he usually ends up converting a man to eat more plant-based by the end of it.

 

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I’m simply going to post this recipe now, and you let me know in the comments whether you agree that it is the best!

 

Image of the Deluxe VeganEnvy three bean chili after being cooked, it looks like meat.
Print

Vegetarian Chili – the BEST SLOW COOKER CHILI for a CROWD

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 15 minutes
Servings: 12 people
Calories: 245 kcal
Author: Jeanette Whitten

This vegan chili, without oil, looks like it has meat in it. The key is choosing dark lentils, they will look like ground beef. We use a lentil trio from Costco – see the link to it.

Recipe yields a full 5 quart (4.7 litre) crock-pot / slow cooker. You can update the Servings number to recalculate the recipe if you want to make more or less.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup dried lentils prepared, slightly undercooked, choose dark coloured lentils like the ones in the link - these are the exact lentils we love. They only take 8 minutes to cook!
  • 1 green pepper diced
  • 1 red pepper diced
  • 1 onion sweet, white
  • 1080 ml diced tomatoes can drained
  • 341 ml corn kernels, canned
  • 284 ml mushrooms can
  • 540 ml black beans
  • 540 ml kidney beans

Chili Spice Mix

  • 4 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne powder
  • 1 tsp oregano dried
  • 2 tsp paprika smoked
  • 2 tbsp ground cumin
  • 3 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp pepper fresh ground, or double the amount of powdered pepper

Instructions

  1. Turn slow cooker to high.

  2. Cook lentils in a small pot following the package directions, until just undercooked. They will finish cooking and absorb liquid in the chili.  On the stove my lentils take 7 minutes of simmering in water, plus 4 min of sitting with the heat off, then I drain and add the lentils to the slow cooker.

  3. Meanwhile, add diced onions to a saute or frying pan and cook on medium heat 5 - 9 minutes to caramelize.  Add small amounts of water to prevent sticking.  No oil required.  Bits of brown are tasty.

  4. While the onions are getting flavourful, drain your cans of diced tomatoes as much as possible, really get the liquid out, and add to the slow cooker.  

  5. Large dice the green and red peppers into bite sized pieces. Throw them into the slow cooker so they can start warming up.

  6. Mix up the spices in a separate dish, there will be extra - we aren't going to use it all. 

    Stir 4 heaping tablespoons of spice mix into the slow cooker now before it gets too full.  Reserve the rest of the spice mix for taste testing and adding later or to future chili.

  7. Add all remaining vegetables, lentils, and beans, to the slow-cooker / crock-pot, and stir well to combine.  

  8. Cook on high until bubbling (about 2 hours for my old, very full crock-pot).  It will be faster if your crock pot is less full (see notes).   You can serve the chili at this point, but if you reduce to low and continue cooking for a few hours longer, the chili is going to get tastier and more thick and more brown looking.

Recipe Notes

Cooking time will vary, depending on the size of your slow cooker and how much chili you are making.

Slow cooker manufacturers recommend filling the pot at least half full and no more than two-thirds full.

Your dish might cook more quickly and burn around the top if filled less than half full, and if over-filled, it will take longer to heat up to temperature and cook.

 

Nutrition Facts
Vegetarian Chili – the BEST SLOW COOKER CHILI for a CROWD
Amount Per Serving (1 / 12th of recipe)
Calories 245 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 1g 2%
Sodium 860mg 36%
Potassium 892mg 25%
Total Carbohydrates 45g 15%
Dietary Fiber 16g 64%
Sugars 5g
Protein 15g 30%
Vitamin A 30.3%
Vitamin C 39.5%
Calcium 8.9%
Iron 33.4%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

What's Special About VeganEnvy Recipes?  

VeganEnvy recipes are easy, low-fat, whole-foods, plant-based and nutrition rich.  Real food my family eats, and techniques we use to cook.

I choose ingredients that are proven to prevent and reverse disease, based on scientific studies, such as those reviewed on nutritionfacts.org and findings published by whole-foods plant-based (WFPB) experts featured in the Forks Over Knives (FOK) and What the Health documentaries FOK trailer.

Eating VeganEnvy recipes will make you lose weight, look better, feel better and live longer.  PLUS spend your money to cruelty free food systems, cut your environmental impact, and likely increase your compassion for, and awareness of, lives other than your own.

 

Healthy Vegan is Trending!

Please, help others, and our planet – share this content on social media!

Green Vegetable Medley Pasta Soup (Dad’s Soup)

Green pepper, zucchini, spinach, black beans and corn are some of the key ingredients in this vegan dinner soup recipe.

Plus basil, and oregano and a base of celery, carrots and onions.

Together with a whole grain pasta, this is a satisfying vegan supper, and a great easy vegan dinner idea.

Jump to Recipe

The sweet vegetables balance out the stronger tasting ones very nicely.

It is called Dad’s soup because my husband invented it.  We have a few variations of a vegetable medly soup, this one is the green one.

It is delicious, and as soon as we say “we are having Dad’s soup!” our kids go “yay!”.

This vegan vegetable and pasta soup can look a little intimidating at first,

it’s got a lot of green vegetables in it.  So to get our kids to eat this vegan meal we started by telling them we would eat it while watching a movie.

If they ate their soup, the movie kept playing, if they didn’t eat it we would pause the movie and wait for them to eat.

That worked, and they realized they really like this soup, now it is a meal we can count on them eating.

 

To get this soup started,

first chop an onion, and carrots, with garlic, in a food processor, or by hand.  Slice celery and add those ingredients to the pot.

Chop zucchini next.  Larger cubes work best.

 
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Image of white sweet onion and carrots chopped in food processor.
Image of sliced celery on a red cutting board.
Image of chopped zucchini on a red cutting board, ready to go into a vegan soup.

Add the seasonings, and continue adding the vegetables from my recipe, saute together.

Substitute whatever green vegetables you have in your fridge, they will taste good too.

Get your pasta going.

Add the black beans, and corn.

Hold off on the spinach, so that it doesn’t get over cooked and turn the soup too green.

Image of vegetables cooking in a pot, ready for the soup broth to be added.
Image of cooked whole grain rotini pasta in a strainer.

Add vegetable broth and water,

once the vegetable broth is boiling add the pasta and spinach and cook for 3 mintues more and you are done.

Really easy!

It takes about 35 minutes from start to finish to serve this rainbow of veggie dinner soup.

Sauteing before adding the broth makes sure the vegetables are cooked through.

I hope you decide to try making this unusual and practical soup,

and let me know in the comments below what you think.

We recommend whole wheat crackers crumbled in it and some freshly ground pepper and salt to taste.

It is great as lunch leftovers too. 🙂

Image of vegan vegetable medley soup with vegetable broth in pot.
Image of Dad's Vegan Green Vegetable Soup - with all ingredients including spinach in a big soup pot.
Image of Dad's Vegan Green Vegetable Soup in two bowls with crackers.

 

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Dad's Vegan Soup with Pasta
Print

Green Vegetable Medley Pasta Soup (Dad's Soup)

Course: Main Course, Soup
Cuisine: Low Fat, Whole Foods
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 10
Calories: 248 kcal
Author: Jeanette Whitten

If you have never made soup, this one is a no-fail way to start.  

With beans, and pasta, and spinach, and green vegetables, it is always gorgeous - and a hit with the kids.  

Ingredients

Base

  • 1 onion white
  • 3 cups carrots diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, medium, minced
  • 3 celery stalks stalks, diced

Spices

  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 2 tbsp basil dried

Assorted Vegetables

  • 2 zucchini medium, large dice
  • 1 green pepper chopped
  • 12 oz canned corn 341 mL corn, with juice
  • 19 oz black beans can 541 mL, drained but don't bother to rinse
  • 11 oz spinach frozen 300 g, chopped, thawed, not drained

Liquid

Pasta

  • 13 oz whole wheat fusili pasta 375g rotini or penne, or Gluten Free whole grain pasta

Epicure

Instructions

  1. If you are in a hurry, then the food processor is going to be your best friend for this soup recipe.

    Process onions, carrots and minced garlic in your food processor.  Slice some celery and add these all to a large soup pot on medium heat.  

  2. Add salt, basil and oregano and cook for 5-7 minutes until the onion is translucent. Add broth and water a splash at a time if they start to stick.

  3. Chop or process and add zucchini, green pepper to the pot.  Cook for 5-7 more min.

  4. In the meantime, start another medium pot with water for pasta.  When the water boils add the pasta to it and set the timer according to the pasta package directions for al dente - probably for 9 minutes.  Give a piece a cool down and a little chew test before draining.

  5. Add the rest of the broth and water and the can of corn with it's juices to the soup pot. Turn to high until it boils, then reduce to medium low.

  6. Add the drained beans.

  7. When pasta is done, drain and add the pasta to the large soup pot.  

  8. Stir spinach into the soup and cook for 3 minutes until warmed through.

  9. Serve immediately, hot, with whole grain crackers and ice cubes on the side (to cool and so people can get more liquid if they want!).

  10. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper to taste.

Nutrition Facts
Green Vegetable Medley Pasta Soup (Dad's Soup)
Amount Per Serving
Calories 248 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 1g 2%
Sodium 939mg 39%
Potassium 617mg 18%
Total Carbohydrates 46g 15%
Dietary Fiber 10g 40%
Sugars 5g
Protein 11g 22%
Vitamin A 209%
Vitamin C 29.1%
Calcium 10.2%
Iron 13.7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

 

What's Special About VeganEnvy Recipes?  

VeganEnvy recipes are easy, low-fat, whole-foods, plant-based and nutrition rich.  Real food my family eats, and techniques we use to cook.

I choose ingredients that are proven to prevent and reverse disease, based on scientific studies, such as those reviewed on nutritionfacts.org and findings published by whole-foods plant-based (WFPB) experts featured in the Forks Over Knives (FOK) and What the Health documentaries FOK trailer.

Eating VeganEnvy recipes will make you lose weight, look better, feel better and live longer.  PLUS spend your money to cruelty free food systems, cut your environmental impact, and likely increase your compassion for, and awareness of, lives other than your own.

 

Healthy Vegan is Trending!

Please, help others, and our planet – share this content on social media!

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