Breakfast “Egg” Muffins, Two Ways

Today we’re sharing an easy breakfast recipe that is perfect for busy mornings and full of nutrients. Jess will show you how to make a vegan version, tofu egg cups, while Nikki shares a healthy, yet carnivore-friendly, turkey bacon and kale egg muffin. Both are quick and easy to make and everyone in your household is sure to love them. Check out both recipes by clicking on the link below. Enjoy!

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Loaded Chopped Salad with Vegan Dressing

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Keeping up our healthy diet through January has been a challenge. But, let’s not give up just yet! After all, we are only three weeks into 2016! Today we’re sharing a super easy, loaded chopped salad. I don’t know about you, but I totally think lettuce tastes a little better with lots and lots of crunchy toppings. This salad couldn’t be easier to make, and better yet, it is LOADED with nutrients. We topped it off with a 5 minute vegan mustard vinaigrette that we’re sure you will continue to use over and over again for other salads. As we’ve mentioned before, from-scratch salad dressings are easier than you might expect and so much better for you! Ditch all the preservatives and added sugars and start making your own dressings and vinaigrettes today, we promise it’s simple! This one is kid-tested and mom and dad approved. Pick and choose your toppings and get creative! The salad we are showing has hard boiled eggs and turkey bacon on it, so leave those out if you are vegan (obviously!). You can also add cheese if your diet is dairy-friendly. The options are endless!

Ingredients:

Salad:

  • 1/2 red bell pepper, diced
  • 4-6 strips turkey bacon, cooked and cut into bite size pieces
  • 1 bag fresh green beans or haricot vests, chopped
  • 1 cucumber, chopped
  • 1 bunch green onions, chopped
  • 1 bunch radishes, chopped
  • 4 hard-boiled eggs, roughly chopped
  • 1 container cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 head romaine lettuce, chopped

Dressing:

  • 2 Tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Agave syrup
  • 6-8 Tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Simply wash and chop/dice all of the salad ingredients as listed above. Arrange them in a large salad bowl with the lettuce on the bottom and other ingredients on top.

To make the dressing, add the mustard, vinegar and Agave to a medium size bowl. Whisk together with a fork until well combined. Slowly drizzle in olive oil, a little at a time, continuing to whisk. When the olive oil is evenly incorporated, season with salt and pepper as needed. Drizzle dressing over salad and serve immediately. Check out the video below for step-by-step instructions!

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Buffalo Chicken Salad, Two Ways

Happy New Year! Our New Year’s Resolutions are in full effect and whether you’ve vowed to eat healthier, eat at home more often, try new foods, or eat your greens, these salads have you covered. We’re sharing a traditional and vegan take on Buffalo Chicken Salad, a tried and true favorite for most everyone, and to take it a step further, we’re sharing homemade ranch recipes. Both recipes are super easy and nutritious and we even venture to say you’ll never eat store-bought ranch dressing again!

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Chilly Weather/Chili Weather


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Today we’re sharing the perfect meal for blustery winter nights- chili! Hopefully by now you have cleared out the Thanksgiving leftovers and are ready to take on the next rush of holidays! Winter nights mean cooler temperatures and less time for dinner prep! I don’t know about you, but we definitely don’t feel like coming home after a long day of holiday shopping and trimming the tree to prep a super-involved dinner! Chili is one of our favorite go-to easy and hearty meals. Today Nikki shows you how to make a tomatillo and white bean chicken chili while Jess shares a classic vegan chili recipe full of protein and veggies.

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Follow along as we show you, step-by-step, how to make a simple and substantial winter-time meal. Click the link below to see the recipes!

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Thanksgiving Series: Cranberry Sauce with Fresh Orange and Cinnamon

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Hi readers! Today we continue our Thanksgiving Series. As we work our way through the meal, having already shared our Pomegranate Mule and Twice Baked Potato Casserole, it is almost time for the star of the show- the turkey! While we won’t be sharing a turkey recipe with you this year (who has time for that?!?), we are sharing our favorite homemade cranberry sauce that is sure to be a most-loved accompaniment to your main dish- turkey or tofurkey! Personally, I love this sauce so much that I even use it as a spread for biscuits, why not? So ditch that sketchy can of cranberry “relish” and whip up this super easy sauce that uses fresh oranges and a touch of cinnamon. I cannot tell you enough how easy this is, and best of all, it can be made several days ahead of time- yay! That leaves more time for enjoying the company of your guests on Thanksgiving rather than slaving over the stove the whole day!

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CRANBERRY SAUCE WITH FRESH ORANGE AND CINNAMON

(VEGAN)

Ingredients:

  • 1 bag (12 oz) of fresh cranberries
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (about 6-7 medium oranges)
  • zest of one orange

Directions:

First, juice the oranges until you have 1 cup of juice. Pour the orange juice and 1 cup of sugar in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil. Stir occasionally until sugar is dissolved. Then, reduce the heat  and let simmer for 5 minutes.

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Next, stir in the cranberries. How gorgeous are those!?!

Simmer the cranberries over medium-low heat until the cranberries start to pop. They will first look like this…

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Continue to stir the cranberries to avoid burning. They will keep popping and the sauce will thicken.

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Once the sauce looks like this (above), add the zest of one orange and the cinnamon.

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Once most of the cranberries are popped and it has a sauce-like consistency, remove from heat and transfer to a bowl. I like to leave a few whole cranberries for texture so don’t worry if all of them have not popped and reduced. Transfer the sauce to a bowl and refrigerate until you are ready to eat. The sauce will thicken as it cools.

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Garnish with fresh orange zest (optional). Enjoy!

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Almond Pulp Granola

Earlier this week we made easy, creamy almond milk, which left us with some almond pulp, perfect for making gluten-free, paleo granola.  Granola is definitely one of my guilty pleasures, and this version is one of my favorites, as it feels much less like a guilty pleasure and more like a healthy breakfast food. Feel free to get creative with this recipe, adding and substituting your favorite granola ingredients!

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Almond Pulp Granola

(VEGAN)

Ingredients:

  • Almond pulp from a batch of almond milk
  • 2 tablespoons melted cooconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon agave or maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup shredded coconut
  • 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spread the almond pulp evenly over the sheet.

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Bake at 350 for about 15-20 minutes, until the pulp begins to turn golden.

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Remove from the oven and pour the pulp into a mixing bowl. Add all other ingredients and mix well.

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Pour the granola back onto the sheet and bake for another 15-20 minutes, until brown. Enjoy with your almond milk, over yogurt, or gift it with a jar of almond milk!

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Easy Homemade Almond Milk

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I think everyone has asked themselves at least once (or googled!), while enjoying a delicious glass of creamy almond milk, “How do you milk an almond?” All of your questions will be answered with this recipe (hint: you don’t milk an almond, you blend it). Making homemade almond milk sounds a lot more intense and consuming than it really is. Once you’ve soaked your almonds the whole process takes about 10 minutes, and even less to drink it! I love making almond milk from scratch because I can control how sweet I make it, and it is free from extra preservatives and additives that the store-bought variety contain. Because this milk is preservative free, you should enjoy it within the first three days of making it. A jar of almond milk and a box of homemade cookies make a great gift! Plus, check back later this week and I’ll share a tasty, gluten free recipe using the almond pulp you’ll yield from the almond milk.

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Ingredients:

  • 1 cup raw almonds, soaked overnight
  • 3 1/2 cups water
  • 3 medjool dates, pitted
  • sprinkle of cinnamon
  • sprinkle of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)
  • nut milk bag or cheese cloth (you can find these at some grocery stores, Whole Foods, or online.)

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If this is your first time soaking nuts to make milk or cheese, (welcome!) place the nuts in a jar or container and fill with water until the nuts are covered. Place in a cool, dry place, and forget about them for at least four hours, but I usually choose to leave them overnight.
After the nuts are soaked, drain and rinse and plop them in the blender with all of the other ingredients and blend for about 1 minute.

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I highly recommend using a nut milk bag for the straining portion of this recipe, as it is a lot easier than a cheese cloth. If you are using a cheese cloth (as shown here), I recommend using a shallow bowl so the cloth is easier to manage. Slowly pour the blended mixture through the bag, (do this in small batches if using the cloth) and allow to drain in a mixing bowl. Squeeze the excess milk out of the bag.

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Transfer the milk to a jar and-look at that! You’ve successfully milked an almond. What’s left in the bag is called almond pulp or meal. Store it in a ziploc bag or tupperware in your freezer; I’ll be sharing a recipe later this week using the almond pulp! Zero waste recipe right there.

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Meatless Mondays: Fried Rice

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Meatless Mondays are back again this week! Incase you missed it, last week we shared Hearts of Palm Tacos, and today, another favorite, fried rice two ways. Fried rice is the perfect Monday meal, fast, filling, and there’s usually plenty leftover for lunch the next day. Fried rice is such a versatile dish, you can throw almost anything in and be guaranteed to have delicious results. This week we put together a pescetarian Portobello Fried Rice with shrimp, and a vegan Kimchi Fried Rice. Both meatless, both savory and delicious for any diet, and both can be used as side dishes or your main course. Hit the link below to get cooking!

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Meatless Mondays: Hearts of Palm Tacos

Happy New Year! Apologies for us being M.I.A. the past few weeks, the busy holiday season sure got the best of us! We hope all of you had a wonderful holiday full of love and lots of delicious food!

Now, back to business, today we are starting a new weekly feature here on the blog: Meatless Mondays! Every Monday we will feature a vegan or vegetarian dish tasty enough for both our omnivorous and vegan readers. If you’re like us, you probably over-indulged a bit during the holidays (by a bit we mean three-too many Christmas sugar cookies and ten-too-many glasses of champagne, but you know, who’s counting?). It can be difficult to get back into a healthy eating routine and Meatless Mondays are an effortless way to cut calories and add some more plant-based nutrition back into your diet. For us omnivores this might seem scary (my carnivorous boyfriend wasn’t exactly thrilled at the idea), but incorporating a meat-free night into your weekly dinner plans is both healthy and good for the environment, and can be delicious, too!

This week, we are sharing a healthy, vegan and gluten-free take on tacos! Instead of meat we are using hearts of palm. If you’re unfamiliar with this fibrous vegetable, it is the edible inner portion of a cabbage Palm tree. You can buy them at most grocery stores and they come in a can. Their taste is very similar to that of an artichoke heart. This simple recipe requires shredding the hearts of palm, which can be a bit tedious. However, the rest of the recipe is a piece of cake (vegan, gluten-free cake, of course)! The shredded hearts are marinated in a mixture of chile in adobo sauce as well as a chipotle cooking sauce that can be found at most grocery stores. Not a lot of work here, which is ideal for a Monday night. Let’s get started.

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HEARTS OF PALM TACOS

Ingredients:

  • 1 can (14 oz.) hearts of palm
  • 1/4 cup chipotle pepper in adobo sauce with chipotle chopped
  • 1/2 cup Herdez cooking sauce available at most grocery stores
  • 1/2 of a yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 medium garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • tortillas
  • avocado and pico de gallo for topping (optional)

The prep for this recipe requires chopping the onions and garlic as well as shredding the hearts of palm.

Here is the star of the show: the hearts of palm!

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Typically, about four hearts come in a can which is enough to fill about 6 tacos. Here is where the tedious shredding comes into play. If possible, I recommend doing this the night before to save yourself some time after a tiring workday. To shred the hearts of palm, pull back the layers of the hearts and shred like you would a cheese stick. It takes some practice but you’ll get the hang of it after the first one, and of course it doesn’t have to be perfect. It should look something like this when you’re done shredding:

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After shredding, sautée the onions until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add in the garlic and cook for an additional 2 minutes or so.

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Next add the shredded hearts of palm to the onion and garlic mixture and cook for a few minutes so the onion flavor can be absorbed.

Now add the adobo sauce and Herdez cooking sauce and stir. Also add the salt and cumin here.

Let the hearts of palm and onion and garlic mixture cook for about 5-7 minutes, just until everything is nice and hot.Spoon the mixture into your favorite taco shells (these are my favorites right now, I also like to fry them in a pan with a bit of oil for some extra crispiness) and top with fresh pico de gallo and avocado! Time for a Monday night fiesta, enjoy!

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