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Ranch Chicken and Veg Skillet

20180111114019

20180111114019

Dinner time around house is after workout. Ideally workout would be done by 5:30 but needless to say that's not always the case. This means that by the time dinner is ready, we are hungry bears. To help in this effort, I try to find quick meals for the week nights.

Recently, I've been trying to prep any veggies, sauces or spice mixtures while I'm waiting on my Mr. to get home. This has helped tremendously! This recipe lends very well to that method of a little prep and then cook later

I chopped the veggies and chicken and made the ranch seasoning before workout and then all I had to do was basically throw it in the pan, let it cook for 10-15 mins and then eat. So easy.

The cheese pictured here is the cheddar variety of Daiya shreds.

The cheese pictured here is the cheddar variety of Daiya shreds.

If you serve this hot and mix it up the cheese melts into gooey yumminess.

Ingredients

Ranch Seasoning

  • 1 tsp Dill

  • 1 tsp garlic powder

  • 1 tsp onion powder

  • 1 tsp dried minced onions

  • 1 T parsley

  • 1/4 tsp black pepper

  • 1/2 tsp sea salt

Skillet

  • 2 tsp olive oil

  • 1 pound thin sliced chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces

  • 1/2 red onion, chopped

  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped

  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped

  • 1 large zucchini, chopped

  • 1/2 can black beans, drained and rinsed

  • 1/4 cup quinoa, rinsed (uncooked)

  • 1 can fire roasted diced tomatoes, undrained

  • 1/2 cup low sodium chicken broth

  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded

  • Fresh cilantro, for garnish

Directions

  1. In a large skillet, heat oil on medium high. Add chicken, onions and ranch seasoning blend. Saute and stir often for 2 minutes. Chicken should not be fully cooked.

  1. Stir in bell peppers, zucchini, beans, tomatoes, rice and chicken broth. Bring to a boil, then cover. Simmer on low for 15 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink in the center and quinoa is cooked.

  1. Divide among 4 bowls. Sprinkle cheese evenly over. Top with Cilantro and serve!

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Vegan Taco Lasagna

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I often have the urge to head out the door to my favorite Mexican restaurant, but unfortunately my Mr. isn't a big fan. Not sure why because he's quick to eat anything Mexican inspired that I cook. So I often make up for lack of restaurant access by cooking tex-mex dishes for our lunches and dinners.  In the past, I've made lots of slow cooker type recipes that are delicious. You can even find many of them here on the website. 

This time around, I threw together a plant based taco lasagna. As per my norm, I was tasting as I cooked to make sure it would have the right flavors and the right amount. It started out a little bland so I doctored it up right away and came out with a dish that is pretty tasty. 

Ingredients

1 14oz can black beans, drained

7 cloves of garlic, minced

2 bell peppers, I used one red and 1 green

8oz cherry or grape tomatoes

2 Tbsp olive oil

2 Tbsp tomato paste

Herbs of choice (think Italian seasoning, paprika, chili power, cumin, coriander)

Salt & Pepper to taste

1 medium onion, chopped

7oz Tempeh, cumbled

1 cup raw cashews

1 cup organic vegetable broth

1 Tbsp tahini sesame paste

12 whole wheat tortillas

Directions

1. Boil 1 1/2 cup of water in microwave. Add cashews and let sit for at least 15 minutes while you prepare the rest of the items.

2. Preheat oven to 390°F.

3a. Wash peppers and tomatoes. Add to foil lined baking sheet. Roast peppers and tomatoes for 45 minutes.

3b. If you have an air fryer, you can speed this process up by placing peppers and tomatoes in the basket, turning air fryer to 390, and roasting for 10 -15 minutes. Be sure to check in on them after a few minutes.

4. Open and drain black beans. Mix together with chopped garlic. Set aside.

5. Heat a pan over medium heat, add 1 tbsp olive oil.  Once oil is hot, add chopped onion and crumbled tempeh. Cook for 7-10 minutes or until tempeh is slightly brown.

6. Once vegetable are cooked, remove from oven or air fryer and let cool for 5-10 minutes (until you can handle them). Remove the skins and innards from the peppers. Add along with tomatoes to a blender or food processor.

7. To the blender add 1 tbsp olive oil, salt & pepper, tomato paste, and seasonings of choice. I used the following:

3/4 tsp pink Himalayan sea salt

1/2 tsp ground pepper

1/2 tbsp chili powder

1/2 tsp paprika

1  tsp cumin

1 tsp coriander

You could also add some Cayenne pepper but we don't like a lot of heat.

8. Mix sauce with onion and tempeh mixture in pan. Allow to cook on low until you finish making the cheese sauce.

9. Cheese sauce: Drain soaking cashews, add to blender with tahini paste and vegetable stock. Taste for flavor and add salt, pepper, or other seasonings as needed.

10. Assemble the lasagna starting with a thin layer of cheese sauce, then tortilla, tempeh mixture, beans and then cheese sauce again. Finish with a later of tortillas topped with cheese sauce.

11. Bake at 360°F for 25-30 minutes. Serve and enjoy!

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Quinoa Pizza Bites

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I spend a good chunk of my Sunday in the kitchen running a cooking marathon. These little guys were the result of the most recent success. 

I received an Air Fryer as a gift from my Mr. a few months back and put it to the test as often as I can. The original recipe I found called to make these in the oven but using the air fryer cut the cooking time down significantly and allowed me to use the oven for several batches of apple chips. 

After cooling, I packed 6 of these in a small container for our lunches this week. The recipe made enough for 6 servings ( 2 servings on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.) 

I can also imagine making these for a pitch-in or party. Simple ingredients, plant based, and flavorful. 

Makes 6 servings, Serving Size: 6 bites

Ingredients

1 cup cooked and cooled Quinoa (make sure to rinse it well before you cook it)

2 cups of cooked cauliflower, pureed in a blender

1 flax egg (or you can use a regular egg)

1/4 cup rice flour (I used brown rice flour)

2 Tbsp coconut flour

2 Tbsp pizza sauce

2 tsp onion powder

1 1/2 tsp garlic powder

2 tsp Italian seasoning

1 tsp pink Himalayan sea salt

1/2 tsp ground black pepper

Pizza Sauce for dipping

Directions

1.  If using the oven, preheat to 400° F. If using Air Fryer, make sure your basket is clean and preheat if you'd like. It's not necessary.

2. Mix all ingredients other than dipping sauce in a medium sized bowl using a wooden spoon. If you're up to some fun, use your hands. (But make sure to remove any rings and wash up!)

3. Using a small cookie scoop, scoop onto plate or parchment lined baking tray (if baking in oven).

4. Smooth out balls between your hands gently.

5. If baking, bake for 30 minutes. If air frying, gently place into basket, turn temp to 400 and allow to cook for 10-12 minutes. 

6. Allow to cool for a few minutes before serving with a side of pizza sauce for dunking. 

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Pizza Spaghetti Squash Bowls

My MR. is a huge pizza lover, but really who isn't? By huge, I mean he could eat it everyday if I wasn't on the ball to keep healthy foods in the house. I'm always looking for ways to make sure we get those veggies in and satisfy the pizza craving. This one was a recent winner in our house. All the taste goods of pizza, without the carbs and cals! Read on for the recipe.

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IMG_20170423_221114_133

Serves 4 (or 2 really hungry adults)

Ingredients

1 Spaghetti Squash, cut in half lengthwise

Salt & Pepper, for seasoning

Extra Virgin Olive Oil - about a 1/2 tsp

1 cup of your favorite pizza sauce

30 slices of turkey pepperoni

1/2 cup 2% mozzarella cheese

Garlic Powder - to taste

Italian Seasoning - to taste

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350º F. Line a baking sheet with foil. Wash the outside of the spaghetti squash to remove any dirt or residue. Using a sharp knife, cut it in half lengthwise. Scoop out all of the seeds and discard. The inside should be smooth.

  2. Spray or use a brush to apply olive oil to inside of squash. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place inside down on baking sheet and bake for 1 hour.

  3. Remove from oven and allow squash to cool for 5 minutes. Gather the rest of your ingredients while you wait.

  4. Using a fork, scrape the "noodles" into the center of the squash. Leave the noodles inside the skin.

  5. Mix noodles with 1/2 cup of pizza sauce. Add garlic and italian seasoning to your liking. (I like to jazz up sauce because it never seems to have enough flavor.)

  6. Add 7 pepperonis to the top of the noodles.

  7. Top the pepperonis with cheese. Add 7-8 more pepperonis to the top of the cheese.

  8. Move top rack of oven to the highest position in your oven and turn broiler on high. Place pan with squash under the broiler for 4-6 minutes. Make sure to watch it so that the cheese doesn't burn.

My MR. and I shared a half of a squash and were pleasantly full. So, grab two forks and dig in! Make sure to blow on it a bit in case it's too hot.

Nutrition Info:

Pepperoni Pizza Spaghetti Squash Boats MyFitnessPal.com.png

Pepperoni Pizza Spaghetti Squash Boats MyFitnessPal.com.png

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