Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Strawberry Kale Quinoa Salad with Strawberry Vinaigrette

One of my suggestions when making a kale salad is to tear the kale into small pieces but rub it together and through your hands while you are ripping it apart. It breaks the kale down and makes it much less rough & bitter, it will make the kale brighter green too. I promise the coconut bacon on this just makes it THAT much better. You want to put it on there. Make some & have left overs! I don't put lots of dressing on the salad when it's in the large bowl, I kind of wait until I'm about to eat it and put it over the top then add the coconut bacon.

1/2 cup quinoa, cooked in 1 cup water
1 bunch kale, torn into small pieces
6-8 strawberries, chopped
1 tomato, chopped
1/2 cucumber, chopped
2 green onions including white part, sliced
1/2 avocado, diced
coconut bacon to taste (for topping)
1/2 red bell pepper, small dice (optional)

Strawberry Vinaigrette Dressing
1 1/2 cups strawberries (fresh)
1/4 cup coconut vinegar (not coconut flavored vinegar) can sub white wine vinegar or lemon juice
2 garlic cloves
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil or grapeseed oil
1/4 cup water
1/3 cup coconut sugar

Salad: In a large bowl, put the torn kale. After the quinoa is cooked and has cooled for at least 5 minutes, add it over the top of the kale and toss with 1/2 cup of the strawberry vinaigrette. Now add the rest of the salad ingredients over the top, except the coconut bacon (save that for when it is plated). Drizzle with a bit of the dressing.

Dressing: Throw it all in the blender and blend for 1 minute.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Banana Nut Bread (GF, Vegan)

Yes, I'm alive and still randomly posting recipes on here, promise!
I am always in the kitchen creating stuff, but for me, it's a matter 1st writing the recipe down and taking a picture of it. Once those 2 things happen THEN I have to actually log in and type it all out. Such a chore. :0 haha.

When I was a kid I LOOOOOOVED when my mom or grandma would make banana nut bread. Funny thing is, my grandma was always trying to make stuff healthier. She would sub out apple sauce for oil, put less sugar in things, etc. We would be excited to eat something then bite into it and pull a face, like "ewww what's wrong with this?". Wasn't ever the case with banana nut bread. My family finds it funny now that I am the healthy one trying to sub stuff out all the time and may have been one of the biggest complainers about her doing it. Interesting how things turn out.

So, don't mind my camera phone pictures! I lost my camera, yet again, so this is what we get to deal with. Don't let it ruin your idea of the recipe though, because it really is great!!

2014-07-11 17.37.54

banana bread loaf

Makes 1 loaf

4 medium bananas, mashed (leave a good amount of smallish chunks)
3 teaspoons egg replacer, in 4 tablespoons hot water (non-vegan can use 2 eggs)
1/4 cup unrefined coconut oil
1 1/4 cup coconut sugar
1 1/2 cup Gluten Free flour (I used Bob's Redmill)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup chocolate chips (optional)

Preheat oven to 350F

In a tiny bowl combine egg replacer and hot water, mix and allow to sit for about 5 min while you prepare the banana mixture.

In a large bowl, peel & add bananas. (You can mash them with a masher, a fork or do it like I did; with my fingers when I peeled the bananas) Next add the coconut oil, coconut sugar & vanilla. Stir until combined, mashing some as well. Add the egg substitute mixture.

Now add dry ingredients except for the nuts & chocolate chips. I make sure that the flour is the last ingredient measured out and added, then mix with a spoon by hand. After completely combined, then add in nuts & chocolate chips.

Grease a 9 inch bread/load pan & add batter. Cook for 45-55 min.

My oven tends to need to cook longer than others (gas oven, plus at sea level) and I baked mine at 55 min. (The batch I made & is in the pics, I prob should have taken out at 53 min)
You could easily make this into muffins, I don't know exactly how long the cook time would be though, I'm guessing somewhere around 25 min. 

amber chakras black

Monday, June 2, 2014

Vegan Smokey BBQ Soul Bowl (GF, Vegan, Soy free, Nut free)

I posted this recipe over on the other blog that I have going on LimitlessLifeGirls but thought that I would share it on here too. "I'll Take Some of That" could use some love. ENJOY!!

This has a few different components to the meal. None of them are real complicated, and really none of them are a MUST for the meal. Its very flexible and I've made it a bunch of times, each slightly different. But I've had requests for the recipes, so, here we go!
BBQ Pulled jackfruit! I make it into a bowl, but like i said, the different components of this can be used to make whatever you like. Sandwich, taco, burrito, bowl, salad...
I am posting pictures from a few different times that I've made it, each different. I keep consistent on the jackfruit, butternut squash, coconut bacon & kale, but that's about it. Sometimes I have a dressing on it, sometimes not. (See below pics)
Little FYI on the jackfruit, you can find it at Asian markets/grocery stores in the canned fruit section. Get the kind IN WATER, not in syrup. It doesn't have much of a flavor, so it lends itself to being marinated very easily!
This is the pre-marinade. You can see the hard parts of the jackfruit in the upper right.
This is the pre-marinade. You can see the hard parts of the jackfruit in the upper right.
butternut squash
butternut squash mid way though
BBQ Jackfruit
individual parts of the meal
2014-01-09 20.43.40
One way I've had it, more a salad type and drizzle a lemon tahini dressing over the top with pickled onions & avocado.
Little fyi on the jackfruit, you can find it at asian markets/grocery stores in the canned fruit section. Get the kind IN WATER, not in syrup. It doesn't have much of a flavor, so it lends itself to being marinated very easily!

▶▶BBQ Jackfruit
2 cans jackfruit in water
1/2 bottle of favorite vegan BBQ sauce. (I used Annie's)
Open the cans, drain & rinse the jackfruit. Pull the jackfruit apart and put into a medium discarding hard end pieces. Then pour in 1/2 the bottle of BBQ sauce and mix. I suggest letting it sit for at least an hour to marinate. However you can do it all crockpot style & just dump it in & leave it to slow cook for a while.
After marinating, put in pot & cook, covered, on medium stirring every few minutes. Cook for 20 minutes.

▶▶Roasted Butternut Squash
1 medium-large butternut squash, peeled then cubed.
3 TBS nutritional yeast
1 TBS coconut sugar (or sweetener of choice, I like coconut sugar for this because I don't like the extra liquid from liquid sweeteners)
1 TBS oil (i use coconut or grapeseed generally)
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1-2 cloves garlic minced
1/2 onion chopped
Black pepper to taste
Few shakes of dried oregano
Few shakes of dried rosemary
Heat oven to 375° F. I peel the squash with a vegetable peeler, like peeling a potato. You have to make several passes on one section, its peel is thicker & harder than a potato's skin is.  Cube the squash into 1 inch cubes, or smaller & put in an ungreased casserole dish (i line mine with foil) with garlic & onions, then sprinkle ingredients over the squash as evenly as you can, no need to be perfect. Drizzle oil over squash and cover with foil.
Bake for 15 min, pull out and mix it then put back in the oven for another 15 min uncovered.

Bring 2 cups water to boil and add 1 cup quinoa. Turn down heat to low & cover. Let cook covered for about 17 min, until all the liquid has been absorbed. For additional flavor, cook in vegetable broth.

I use either lacinato kale or regular curly green kale. Pull the cleaned kale from the stem and rip into medium pieces and put in a large bowl. If i am making the bowl immediately after the quinoa and vegetables are cooked, so they are really hot, i just put the kale down & the quinoa & vegetables over the top. It wilts the kale slightly making it softer, less bitter & easier to eat.

▶▶Coconut Bacon (put over the top)
If you haven't had coconut bacon, you should invest in the time to make it. So good! Recipe here

▶▶Options to have it with:
●Roasted Brussels Sprouts (i roast them with garlic & onions)
●Steamed cauliflower & broccoli
●Roasted sweet potatoes (sometimes combined with the vegetables below)
●Sauteed vegetables (I've done shallot, onion, bell peppers & zucchini w/garlic)

Orange Creme Protein Smoothie (GF, Vegan, Soy free)

This is a real simple smoothie and it doesn’t use nut milk. I’ve been reading up on the effects of carrageenan in our food. Just a quick explanation; it’s used to make creamy things hold together & not separate… dairy & nondairy alike, unfortunately. There are several almond and coconut milks that use it. If you want to read more about carrageenan here is an article on it.

<a title="Carrageenan Article" href="">Carrageenan Article</a>


So, l have a renewed focus on making my own nut milk (and not just being lazy). I didn’t have any made today, but happened to have some coconut water in the fridge. Coconut water is great for you, some people aren’t crazy about the taste though. Why not use it to make a nice creamy smoothie? Hydrating and gives you protein plus orange cream is a great flavor. Fabulous for a lighter breakfast or a post workout drink.

<a href=""><img class="aligncenter size-large wp-image-358" src="" alt="Vegan Orange Creme Coconut Water Protein Smoothie" width="652" height="790" /></a>
<strong><em>Makes about 30 oz</em></strong>

<strong>8 oz coconut water</strong>
<strong> ½ banana</strong>
<strong> 1 orange, peeled</strong>
<strong> 1 scoop vanilla protein powder (I used Vega’s <a title="Viva Vanilla" href="">Viva Vanilla</a>, love that stuff!!)</strong>
<strong> ½ TBS Maca powder (<em>optional</em>)</strong>
<strong> 8 ice cubes</strong>

Throw it all in the blender and blend until smooth. My personal recommendation is: start with the coconut water and end with the ice cubes, it’ll make things blend better.

Much love!!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Chocolate White Chocolate Chip Cookies with Coconut & Almonds (GF, Vegan)

These cookies are low sugar/glycemic and are flexible in several of the ingredients. If you don’t have the white chocolate chips, you can put in regular chocolate chips, or even some dried cranberries. If you don’t want to put in the flaked coconut, you can put all almonds, or replace the almonds for a different nut. I’ve made this before with chocolate chips, coconut and crushed pecans. Quite delish!! Use the sweeteners listed to make the cookies low glycemic, but if you don’t have some of them or don’t care I listed some subs on the ingredient list. Hope you enjoy!!
chocolate coconut almond cookies ready to go into the oven 

yummy vegan gluten free chocolate cookies with white chocolate chips and almonds low GI too!!

Vegan Gluten Free Chocolate Cookies with white chocolate chips coconut flakes and almonds. Low GI
Makes 12-14 cookies

1 cup gluten free flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill)
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/4 cup coconut sugar (can sub brown sugar, no longer low GI)
3 tbsp coconut nectar (can sub maple syrup, agave or honey, no longer low GI)
3 tbsp brown rice syrup
3 tbsp almond butter
3 tbsp unrefined coconut oil
2 tbsp hot water
1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

1/3 cup vegan white chocolate chips (can switch for chocolate chips if you don’t have white)
3 tbsp almonds (sliced, silvered, chopped, your pref)
3 tbsp coconut flakes

Preheat the oven to 350F. In a medium baking bowl mix all of the ingredients in italics (coconut sugar to vanilla). Once they are all smoothly mixed together, add in the rest of the ingredients and mix by hand all at once.
On a parchment lined baking sheet, spoon the batter into round shapes. The cookies will spread but only slightly, so have the shapes close to the way you want them.
Bake for 11 min (12 min if you have a gas oven). Remove from the oven & let the cookies sit on the sheet for 1 min, then slide the parchment paper along with the cookies off the baking sheet & allow to cool.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Happy Heart Juice (Alkaline, GF, Raw, Paleo)

Pretty simple and straight to the point from the picture. If you are looking for an interesting & pleasant twist, add 1 green onion to the list of veggies that get juiced. I drink this for breakfast often!

1 Red Bell Pepper
3 Carrots
4 Celery Stocks
1 Cup Spinach
1 Cup Parsley
1/2 Lemon

Juice em all!!

Monday, January 13, 2014

Creamy Oregano Hemp Dressing (alkaline, gf, nut free, raw, vegan, paleo)

I have fresh oregano growing in my pots outside, and there havent been too many good uses for it for me. Seems like most recipes that use fresh oregano include meat. Here is a recipe I've come up with that goes really well over all sorts of salads! I just throw all the ingredients into my blender and blend for about a minute. Pretty simple. Hope you enjoy!

1/4 C hemp seeds
1/3 C water
2 lemons, juiced
3-4 cloves garlic
1/4 C fresh oregano
2 TBS extra virgin olive oil
1/2 TBS apple cider vinegar
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp black pepper

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Italian Quinoa Sprouted Lentil Balls (GF, Nut Free, Soy Free, Vegan)

I'm excited to share this recipe for a couple of reasons. First off, it's fabulous. Secondly, I don't often see burgers, patties, balls or any of the like using fresh sprouted lentils, and I have looked! So I took the Italian Lentil Sliders from The Tolerant Vegan and made them gluten free as well as put my own twists on it. I didn't want sliders. They look cool, but dealing with GF buns just isn't my thing. But I think making this as an "Italian meatball sub" would be pretty cool. But, I really wanted to have these meatball style over noodles. I spiralized some zucchini (made it into noodles) and then boiled it for about 3 minutes and strained. My parents are in love with spaghetti squash, and will make these again and put them over spaghetti squash for sure. Of course, regular pasta is lovely too.
These balls hold together well so long as you make sure to pack them when you make the ball before they bake. Also, if you don't feel like going through all the hassle of making the sauce to go with it, just use your favorite marinara sauce. Simple as that!
When I made these, I sprinkled some homemade raw parmesan over the top of it, and it was an amazing addition. For my fiance (non-vegan) I put some mozzarella over it and let it melt as well as the raw parmesan. I would maybe sprinkle some daiya over it for myself next time, didn't have any on hand, but it certainly wasn't lacking because of it.

right before the balls hit the oven

sauce after being processed
spiralized zucchini

Makes 15 balls

Quinoa Lentil Ball Ingredients:
1/3 of a red onion
3 garlic cloves
1 1/3 C cooked quinoa
2/3 C sprouted lentils (fresh/raw)
1/4 C gluten free oats
1/2 TBS ground flaxseed (flax meal)
1/4 C + 2 TBS oat bran
2 TBS coconut aminos (or braggs/tamari/soy sauce)
1 TBS olive oil
1/2 lemon, juiced
1/4 c buckwheat flour
1/2 tsp real salt
1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
1/2 tsp liquid smoke
1/4 tsp smoked paprika
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp chili powder
2 tsp yellow mustard powder
2 tsp molasses

Sauce Ingredients:
1/2 TBS grapeseed or coconut oil (or other cooking oil of choice)
1/2 onion, chopped
1 medium shallot, chopped
1 small carrot, finely chopped
3 celery ribs, finely chopped
3 springs (fresh) Italian parsley (can use regular parsley), finely chopped
3 clove garlics, minced
1/2 TBS coconut aminos (or preferred soy sauce)
1 15 ounce can diced tomatoes (I used fire roasted tomatoes)
1 TBS capers (can omit if you don't have any on hand)
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/4 tsp italian seasoning
1 TBS sundried tomato
Sea salt, to taste
Fresh ground black pepper, to taste
1 TBS nutritional yeast (optional)

QL Balls... In a food processor with an S blade, put in the onion & garlic, pulse until it's chopped small. Scrape down the sides and add all of the other ingredients to the food processor bowl. Pulse until combined. I did about 20, 1/2 second pulses *Make sure to pulse it because you don't want it to become a puree which will happen if you just turn it on.

**If you don't have a food processor, or it's a small one, don't fret! This is really easy to just finely chop the onion & garlic, then put it into a medium-large bowl and add the other ingredients and stir together. It won't combine quite as well, but still will turn out just lovely. I promise.   I'm kinda lazy and if I am going to be using my food processor for one thing in the meal I will use it as much as I can to save me time.

Heat your oven to 300 degrees F.
On a baking sheet, lay out parchment paper (if you don't have any, you can grease up some foil).
I used a 2 TBS Cookie Scoop packed tightly. Then put them out on the baking sheet.
Cook for 12 min, pull out, flip all the balls over and return to oven for an additional 15 minutes.

Sauce... put the onions & shallots in a medium size pot with oil. Saute for about 5 min on medium heat. While onion mix is cooking, throw the celery, carrot & parsley in the food processor and process to a fine chop. Add to onion mixture, mix, cover and let cook for 5 min
Now add the rest of the ingredients and bring to simmer. Cover and let simmer for 10 min. Remove from heat and let it cool off for about 2 min. Pour back into food processor (or blender) and blend for about 30 seconds. Then return to pot.
Once you are ready to eat, heat sauce on low heat. Prepare preferred pasta. I spiralized zucchini and blanched it. Another great option would be spaghetti squash, or of course regular pasta. When you drain your pasta from the water, go ahead and bring the sauce to a simmer put the balls that you will be using for the meal into the sauce for 2 min. 

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Vegan Coconut Bacon (Soy-free, GF, Vegan)

So here is my take on the oh so wonderful coconut bacon. There are a decent amount of recipes out there. I used coconut aminos so as to avoid the mass amount of sodium in soy sauce, and to avoid unfermented soy that is Braggs liquid aminos. Personal preference really. But coconut aminos don't have as deep of a salty profile as soy sauce does, so salt gets added to the recipe.
I used 2 different flavors of liquid smoke to give it a bit more depth. I used Colgin brand of liquid smoke, they have both hickory flavor and mesquite flavor, and are vegan. I hear that there are some liquid smokes on the market that aren't vegan.

2 1/2 cups flaked coconut, unsweetened
2 TBS liquid smoke (I used 1 TBS Hickory flavor & 1 TBS Mesquite flavor)
1 1/2 TBS coconut aminos (or braggs or soy sauce)
1 TBS maple syrup
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp smoked paprkia
1/4 tsp granulated garlic
1/4 tsp salt of choice  <--- omit if using soy sauce

In a medium bowl, mix together all ingredients, except for coconut.
Combine coconut flakes with wet mixture. Stir the coconut around to get it entirely coated. Let sit and soak in for 30 minutes or more, I did it for about an hour.
Heat the oven to 325 F.
Grease a foil lined baking sheet and pour everything from the bowl onto it. Spread the coconut out in a thin layer. Bake for about 18-20 min, pull out every 5-6 min and mix the coconut then slide together in a pile, then spread back out into a thin layer.  This will prevent burning as well as make sure all of the coconut bacon is equally cooked.
You will see the coconut start to darken considerably on the 3rd time you pull it out, make sure the darker coconut is closer to the center than the edge. Coconut bacon is done when they've all browned a medium amount.
When you take it out of the oven, the coconut will still be somewhat soft/pliable but will quickly harden up as it cools down. Shouldn't take but a few minutes until you can enjoy the crunchy goodness!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Caramel Millet

 After quite some time and many requests, I am finally posting my yummy caramel millet recipe. I'm posting the healthier version, but also the more pricey and a bit more rare ingredients recipe. But, if you go with that I put in parenthesizes, it will turn out just fine and cheaper. Coconut oil acts like vegan butter, and coconut sugar acts like brown sugar in this recipe. So, easily switched. Also, it doesn't have to be puffed millet, it can be puffed rice, puffed kamut, puffed wheat, or even a rice krispie type cereal.

 Caramel Puffed Millet Treats

1/4 c coconut oil (can use vegan butter sub)
1/2 c coconut sugar (can use brown sugar)
1/2 c brown rice syrup
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla extract
5 cups puffed millet (or any other puffed 'cereal')

In a small pot over med-low heat add the oil and sugar. Mix well, and add in brown rice syrup. Keep stirring, it will come to a boil, turn heat to low as you are still stirring. Let it boil for 4 min, stirring randomly so it doesn't stick to the bottom or burn.
Cut the heat & mix in the soda. There will be a chemical reaction when it mixes, so it will bubble up and become a lighter brown. Then mix in the vanilla.
In a brownie pan, pour the puffed millet. Follow up with the caramel sauce and mix it all together. Once the caramel has coated the millet, press it into the pan.

**Sometimes I mix other things into it, like nuts, coconut and or dried fruit. I have mixed in chocolate chips a few times as well, but you have to know they won't really stay chips, it will turn into more of chocolate streaks, the caramel melts the chocolate. It goes very well being melted on top though, like chocolate frosting!


Friday, June 28, 2013

Virgin Bloody Mary Juice (Alkaline, GF, Raw, Vegan)

Sorry for no picture, but I liked how this turned out so much that I almost just want to have it documented for myself because I know I will come back to it. This can be drank as juice, or had as a smoothie, or what I did 3/4 juice and 1/4 smoothie mixed together.

Makes 32 oz w/fiber

2-3 tomatoes (I used 2 BIG ones, if you use Roma, will need 3 possibly 4)
1 red bell pepper
2 celery ribs
1 carrot
1/2 zucchini
1/2 lime
1 clove garlic
Large handful of fresh herbs (oregano, basil, cilantro & parsley are what I used, but use what you have all else fails add in some dried herbs)

Salt to taste (I used Real Salt)
1 TBS optional Vegan Worcestershire sauce (nonvegan ones have anchovies in them)
1/2 tsp black pepper

Juice all ingredients together in first section and add the salt, pepper & vegan Worcestershire sauce after you have juiced it, and pour it over ice.

If you have a juicer, run em all through that. If you are using a high power blender like I do, I used the 'whole juice' mode on my Blendtec. It tastes great just to have it as a smoothie, but removing some of the pulp gives you a stronger taste and it's more like the Bloody Mary feel. So I strained 3/4 of the liquid through my nut milk bag and then added it back to the remaining 1/4, added 4 ice cubes, the salt, pepper & vegan Worcestershire sauce. After that I poured it into a BIG cup that had 4 ice cubes in it. So good, so good!

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Kale Salad with Creamy Mango Vinigrette Dessing (GF, Vegan)

I know I am a slacker and never post anything on here lately. I wish I could say it was because I am so busy with work that I just don't have time, but that's not the case. It's basically that I'm lazy and get caught up doing other stuff. At any rate, this mango dressing is soooo amazingly good. I find myself just trying to eat IT! I use it in other salads as well, hopefully I will post another one somewhat soon.

Serves 4 as entree salads

1.5 cup quinoa, cooked in 3 cups water
4-5 cups kale torn (I also used baby greens mixed in)
1 cup tomato, chopped
1 cup cucumber, quartered and sliced
1 large mango, diced
1 red onion, sliced thin
1 avocado, diced
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped (or herb of choice, I've done it with basil & it's great)
1 tbs lemon juice
1/4 cup currants, cranberries or raisins
1/4 cup pepitas (can sub slivered almonds, or cashews)

 Cook quinoa first and allow it to cool down some before putting it with the salad. In a medium-large bowl combine all salad ingredients except quinoa, kale, currants & pepitas.
To serve, place greens on 4 seperate plates (or bowls) top with 1/4 the amount of cooked quinoa. Top with salad ingredients from the med-large bowl, then put desired amout of dressing on top, it is creamy and somewhat thick. Then sprinkle with currants and pepitas. I usually sprinkle on some salt, black pepper & cayenne pepper as well, but it depends who I'm serving it to.

 *If you are making this as a large salad for individuals to dish themselves, put kale in a large serving bowl first, then add the quinoa & ingredients from the bowl, mix. Then add in a little more than half of the dressing and toss, if it seems somewhat dry, add in more, I like mine drenched in the stuff, but some people may not. Sprinkle currants & pepitas on top of the salad.

Creamy Mango Vinigrette 
1 VERY FULL cup mango
1/3 cup olive oil
1/4 cup sweetener of choice (I've used maple syrup, coconut sugar, stevia & agave all in different amounts or individually, just needs to be equal to 1/4 cup)
1/3 cup orange juice
2 Tbsp rice vinegar
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 large clove garlic
1/2 inch knob fresh ginger
pinch cayenne pepper (optional)

Put all the ingredients into the blender and blend until smooth.