Thursday, July 31, 2014

Vegan Lentil Baked "Beans"

Vegan Lentil Baked "Beans"
Baked Beans and summertime go hand and hand, making a perfect pair. But when I see baked beans, I don't usually think of lentils. This great side dish is a new way to think of a summer time side dish. With the replacement of lentils, you get an even better recipe to enjoy. These ingredients are simple but when combined, turn into a DELISH dish! This recipe shows you how to make a traditionally yummy and  perfect baked bean...but NEW and improved, plus they are vegan....BONUS! These "beans" continue to stew away during the day and fill your house with a mouth watering aroma that any family member will love. Great for any picnic, BBQ, party, or family night, you can't go wrong. You will have your family and friends asking for seconds and thirds, as well as the recipe. Perfect paired with your favorite main dishes as well as a great late night snack...yeah we all do it too. Serve hot or enjoy cold with your favorite main dish. And we won't tell if you sneak tastes out of the pot here and there, but make sure you leave enough for the family too! Enjoy!

Vegan Lentil Baked "Beans"


1/4 cup vegan bacon (any kind you like, I used the salad topping kind)
1 large yellow onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups lentils, thoroughly rinsed
6 to 7 cups water 
1/2 cup ketchup
1/4 cup yellow mustard
2 Tablespoons maple syrup
3 Tablespoons cider vinegar
1 Tablespoons vegan Worcestershire sauce
2 Tablespoons brown sugar sugar
2 Tablespoons mustard powder
1 large bay leaf
1 teaspoon liquid smoke 
2 Tablespoons molasses 
Salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste


Heat the oven to 350 degrees

In a large dutch oven (the kind that can go on the stove-top and in the oven). Add the lentils, water, and the remaining ingredients.

*TIP: You can  boil your lentils beforehand to lesson the cooking time OR you can also make these in a Crockpot for even more of a set and forget recipe.*

Stir well to incorporate everything.

Cover, place in oven, and bake for 1 to 2 hours, or until lentils are tender. Adjust water content if needed while they bake. They can dry out while cooking, if so, just add a little water and continue to cook. Once the lentils are cooked threw and tender, serve immediately or enjoy later at room temperature. Serve along side your other summer time favorites and enjoy!

Ready to Serve Lentils


Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Gluten-Free/Vegan Lemon & Blueberry Pancakes

Comfort doesn't stop just because its Gluten-Free! We all want to have those familiar meals that make us feel warm and fuzzy inside. When those cravings come around, we should all have those options. When it comes to breakfast, we all think of those familiar pancakes. I can't think of a better comfort food that we LOVE to indulge in, on a nice Sunday morning...or even the occasional dinner (Yes we all LOVE breakfast for dinner). This recipe shows you how to make not only a craveable pancake, but also a vegan & GF pancake. These pancakes are a fool proof recipe that will make you remember why we love and crave that mapley carb in the morning. But the difference is, everyone can enjoy them and no one will know they are any different from the original. You can switch up the flavors and toppings to any given day and they freeze great for future meals. Pair them with your other breakfast favorites and a big glass of vegan milk. You will wish every meal is breakfast, Enjoy! 

Gluten-Free/Vegan Lemon & Blueberry Pancakes


-1 1/2 cups GF Flour 
-1 heaping cup organic blueberries
-3 Tablespoon Sugar
-2 Tablespoons Baking Powder
-1/4 teaspoon Salt
-1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum
-1 1/2 cup vegan milk
-1 whole organic lemon, zested & then juiced (juice will vary, that's ok)
-2 Tablespoons oil or melted vegan butter  (your choice)
-1 1/2 teaspoons pure Vanilla extract


Combine the flour, sugar, xanthgum, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl and mix well. 

Mix in the vegan milk, juice, zest, extract,  and oil.

Whisk all of these ingredients together until the batter is blended together and smooth but don't over whip too long. 

Once it is mixed, fold in your blueberries.  Some lumps from the batter are okay. 

Let this pancake batter rest for 5 to 10 minutes until you see the mixture looking bubbley and frothy. 

Heat a griddle or frying man over medium high heat with enough vegan butter or oil to cover the surface. (1 to 2 tablespoons) 

Drop 1/4 cup of batter one at a time onto the hot oiled griddle. 

When bubbles appear on the surface of the pancake, approximately 3-4 minute, flip and cook the other side for another 3 to 4 minutes or until both sides are golden brown and firm to touch.

Reapply butter/oil to griddle if it gets dry. Serve with your favorite vegan butter, syrups, vegan whipped cream, or even jam. Enjoy!

INFO & Tip
*Makes around 10 pancakes, less if you do bigger. You will want make extra batches for the freezer! Microwave for 30-60 seconds and you have fresh homemade pancakes in the AM.*


Thursday, July 10, 2014

Vegan Lemonade Cupcakes

Vegan Lemonade Cupcakes
I love to change up the flavors of cupcakes, you don't want to get bored do you? ...Okay I don't think you can get bored with any kind of cupcake but its nice to change it up right?. This recipe will remind you of that familiar refreshing drink treat you loved to drink and cool off with on hot days. With that yummy aromatic lemon flavor, paired with that creamy and dreamy lemon buttercream frosting. This cupcake is different in all the right ways. I will guarantee you will not be disappointed. Pair the cupcake with a big glass of vegan milk and relax with this familiar drink flavored treat. Enjoy!

Vegan Lemonade Cupcakes

1 Tablespoon vinegar
1 cup vegan milk
1/2 cup lemon juice
Zest from 1 lemon
2 1/4 cups flour
2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup oil
1 1/4 teaspoon lemon extract
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

*Pre-cut Straws & Vegan Sprinkles to Decorate (Optional)

Vegan Lemon Buttercream (Recipe Below)


Heat the oven to 350 Degrees.

Line your cupcake tin with paper cupcake liners and set aside.

Place the vinegar in the bottom of a 2 cup measuring cup and fill the cup with the vegan milk and lemon juice to equal 1 ½ cups. Stir well and set aside (the mixture will curdle).

In a large mixing bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. 

Once you are ready to make the batter, place your mixing bowl in your stand mixer. In the mixing bowl fitted with a paddle attachment, mix together the vegan milk mixture, oil, vanilla, zest, and lemon extract. Add in the dry ingredients to the wet and beat until smooth using a hand-held mixer, stopping once to scrape down the sides of the bowl.

Once the cupcake batter is done, let it rest for 10 to 15 minutes. This mixture will become airy and light. Once you have your batter ready to use, fill each cupcake liner with ¼ cup of batter (if using flower cupcake liners, only fill half way up).

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until a cake tester or toothpick inserted in the middle of a cupcake comes out clean.

Let the cupcakes cool in the pans for 3 to 5 minutes, then remove cupcakes from the pan and place on a wire cooling rack. Let the cupcakes cool completely before frosting. Once they are frosted and decorated, pair the cupcakes with a big glass of vegan milk and relax with this familiar drink flavored treat. Enjoy!

Ready to Frost Cupcakes

Vegan Lemon Buttercream

1 cup vegan butter or shortening
2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon extract
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest


In the stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the vegan butter or shortening and the exacts on medium-high speed until fluffy, about 2 minutes, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Once the vegan shortening mixture is creamed you can move on to the next step.

Add in your powdered sugar and switch the mixer to low, slowly adding in the lemon juice. Beat the frosting until incorporated, and then beat on medium high until the frosting is airy and thoroughly mixed, about 1 to 2 minute, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl.

Ready to use Frosting

When the cupcakes are ready to handle and are cooled, using a piping bag (or with a spatula) frost the top of the cupcakes with the homemade vegan frosting. Decorate each cupcake with edible vegan sprinkles (optional) and a small straw. Serve and Enjoy!

*I took regular sized straws and cut them to fit each cupcake & topped each with vegan sprinkles.


Vegan Penne Alla Vodka

Vegan Penne Alla Vodka 

I can't think of anything more comforting than a big plate of pasta. Now if you make that tomato sauce a vegan sauce & add can you say no?? Men or women, vegan or non-vegan...we love pasta and nothing satisfies your tummy on a late night more than pasta. Its great to serve to crowds, for a quick dinner for you or the family, and great for dates. This recipe will show you how to make an ultimate Classic in the pasta world. One that's a staple on every Italian menu. It will have you satisfied if you are serving it for a party of one or a crowd, great for any date served with a garden salad and garlic bread. Your sure to snag anyone's heart with this classic recipe, just remember two garlic eaters make a right. Enjoy!

Vegan Penne Alla Vodka


-1lb Organic Penne Pasta

-2 Tablespoons Vegan Butter

-2 Tablespoons Organic Olive Oil
-1 whole Medium Organic Onion, Chopped Finely
-2 Large Cloves (to 3 Cloves) Organic Garlic, finely chopped
-1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
-1/2 to 1 Cup Vegan Vodka, to taste (if you like a strong taste, add a full cup)
-2/3 cup full fat organic coconut milk 
-1 cup vegan cheese (Daiya Jack Style)
-2-3 Tablespoons Nutritional Yeast, or to taste
-1/4 teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper Flakes 
-1 Tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
-1 Tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped


Cook pasta according to package directions, being careful not to overcook.
In a large skillet over medium heat, add olive oil and vegan butter. 
When vegan butter is melted, add in chopped onion, garlic, red repper flakes
Stir and allow to cook for two minutes. Pour in vodka. Stir and cook for three minutes. Add in tomato puree and herbs, then stir to combine.

Reduce heat to low and stir in coconut milk and vegan cheeses. Allow to simmer and adjust for seasoning. 
Once your pasta has cooked to desired tenderness, Drain the pasta, reserving 1/2 cup of pasta water in case sauce is too thick. Add cooked pasta to the sauce, tossing to combine. Splash in a 
little water if it needs it. The starch in the pasta water helps bind the sauce and pasta and make it even more luscious. It's an old Italian trick...shhhh.

Pour mixture into large serving bowl. Garnish with more Vegan Parmesan Cheese and basil or parsley. Eat it out of the serving bowl...(or a plate sheesh don't judge)...Then faint from yumminess overload...Repeat as needed. Enjoy!