Recipe: Gluten-Free Lasagna – Veggies and so much more


One of my favorite foods that I knew I would miss when I had to go gluten-free was lasagna. I love it! So I set about trying to find a recipe and not really finding any that would work for me, so I started to piece together ideas and came up with this one! I love it so much I can’t even begin to tell you. Β Try it – let me know what you think.

Yum..yum

Yum..yum

Ingredients:

  • Half a medium onion – chopped
  • Half a green pepper – chopped
  • 1 pound of protein (I use grass fed, local beef but vegan crumbles would work too might just need a little more italian seasoning)
  • 1 spicy italian sausage (local) or vegan sausage as long as you can squeeze it out of the case
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1.5 Tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • Ingredients
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh black pepper
  • 1 package of chopped up fresh mushrooms
  • 2-4 total Zucchini and yellow squash (depending on size)
  • 1 small eggplant
  • 12 asparagus
  • 1.5 cups of mozzarella cheese
  • 6 ounces of part-skim ricotta cheese (you can also use the tofutti vegan ricotta if you like. I did try to use it in a subsequent version of this and it turned out decently!)
  • 1 jar of favorite marinara sauce

Prep:

  • Chop up the onion and green pepper
  • Slice up the zucchini, yellow squash and half eggplant
  • Wash asparagus

What you need:

  • 12×6 lasagna pan
  • Parchment paper

Directions:

  1. In a 12 inch skillet (seasoned cast iron preferably) brown the protein (pound of meat/meat substitute and the sausage which you need to squeeze out of the casing)
  2. Drain once browned
  3. Add in garlic and stir
  4. Add in onion, garlic and green pepper, allow to cook for a few minutes until it starts to soften
  5. Add mushrooms and cover for 3-5 minutes until the mushrooms reduce
  6. Add one jar of favorite marinara or tomato sauce and 1 Tablespoon of italian seasoning
  7. Add crushed red pepper and black pepper
  8. Stir and cover to simmer for 5-10 minutes
  9. Line the pan with the parchment paper and put a little sauce in the bottom
  10. Then start layering the raw vegetables and cheese
  11. Start with zucchini and cover the bottom; put a half Tablespoon of ricotta on each slice of Zucchini/Squash; sprinkle italian seasoning on the ricotta; spoon and spread sauce to cover the layer; sprinkle mozzarella to taste; layer eggplant, asparagus and layer of zucchini; put a half Tablespoon of ricotta on each slice of Zucchini/Squash; sprinkle italian seasoning on the ricotta; spoon and spread sauce to cover the layer; sprinkle mozzarella to taste. Repeat until you reach the top and then cover with mozzarella.

Bake in over on middle rack for 40-45 minutes at 350-375 depending on your oven. Allow to cool for 10-15 minutes once cooked.

Recipe: Vegan Ranch Dressing


Ok so there are a lot of vegan ranch dressing recipes out there – but none of them worked for me. Very sad! I’m a HUGE lover of ranch. So I decided tonight that I would make my own – I’ve pulled from around what I’m finding…As close to vegan buttermilk ranch as a Vegan is likely to get IMO – see what you think!

What you’ll need:

  • 1 cup vegananese (I use the grapeseed one)
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened soy milk
  • 1 Tbsp dried chives – grind a little (use fresh if you’d prefer but you’ll need more)
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder (might want a little more – to taste)
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powderΒ (might want a little more – to taste)
  • 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 to 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper (it makes all the diff for it to be fresh!)
  • Pinch of kosher salt
  • Optional: if you have avocado on hand squash 1/2 a large avocado and mix it in! If you do this might be good to add a little lemon to preserve. πŸ™‚

Mix it all together – voila! SO GOOD!!! πŸ™‚

Recipe: Vegan Banana & Chocolate Chip Muffins


Preface: until last week when I made these for the first time, I had NEVER made muffins before. I wasn’t even sure I had a muffin tin…turns out mom had given me one forever ago so I did :). Thank God for that – these are fabulous!! You can adapt the recipe to fit what you like, but these are mine.
This recipe is adapted from a fabulous blueberry one in the Vegetarian Times – as is my custom, I just used it as my base – added and changed things, making it quite a bit different, and more mine. πŸ™‚
What you will need:Β 

  • ΒΌ cup soy garden earth balance butter (really any soy butter but this is my fav)
  • Β½ cup unsweetened applesauce (although you can use sweetened, this recipe just doesn’t think we need the extra πŸ™‚ )
  • Β½ tsp. salt
  • 1 cup Vegan Cane Sugar (white, in a bag @ Whole Foods)
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour (I use stone-ground whole wheat)
  • 1 Tbs. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract (i put a touch more)
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened soymilk
  • 2 cups vegan chocolate chips
  • 1-2 large a little over-ripe banana (I mash this up with a fork before stirring in)
  • Optional: 1 cup walnuts (just a thought – i’m allergic so I don’t include these)
Directions:
  • You will need a hand held electronic mixer and a muffin tin
  • Preheat oven to 350F.
  • Line a muffin tin with paper muffin liners.
  • Mix all ingredients (save the chocolate chips and banana) together in mixing bowl.
  • Once everything is combined, mash up the banana with a fork and whip using electronic mixer.
  • Add in chocolate chips – stir (don’t use mixer).
  • Spoon into muffin cups, filling three-quarters full. (I use a small ice cream scooper)
  • Bake 35 minutes, or until tops are firm.
  • Serving Size: Makes 24

This is the texture of the batter…


For me – these are best when completely cooled. I freeze more than half of them and take them out as needed. πŸ™‚ Enjoy!

Recipe: Vegan Avocado “Alfredo” Sauce


Avocado “Alfredo” over Linguine

As I was starting to write this post I began thinking…what the heck does Alfredo mean anyway? Can I really call this dish that? Hmm… Wikipedia tells me that Alfredo means “A sauce for pasta incorporating butter, cream, garlic, and Parmesan cheese.” Happy to say this is actually a vegan version πŸ™‚ Only I must admit I DO like this one better. When I started thinking about what I wanted to make I did a lot of research – there are alot of this kind of recipe out there…but like most one’s I find, it’s not perfect for me yet πŸ™‚ Here is my take!

What you will need:

  • Whole wheat pasta (I use linguine, because it is my favorite :))
  • 1 Tablespoon parmesan substitute
  • 2 large avocados
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt
  • 3-4 fresh basil leaves
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened soy milk
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil

This is the easiest recipe…really.

Directions:

  • Boil water for the noodles – you’ll want them done by the time the below is completed…takes about 10-15 minutes.
  • You will need a food processor.
  • Start out by shelling and cutting the garlic clove in quarters – put it in the food processor and mince it
  • Add 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil and 1 Tablespoon lemon juice – process it on high in short bursts for a minute until it becomes creamy in texture
  • Add the four halves of the two avocados – blend on high, pulsing as needed
  • Open the feeder and pour in the soy milk – keep blending on low until combined
  • Add additional Tablespoon of Olive Oil and another Tablespoon of Lemon juice – blend on low, pulsing
  • Add 3-4 basil leaves and pulse on high
  • Add salt and vegan parm substitue- pulse on low til combined
  • Cut up the tomato

Linguine noodles – Avocado Alfredo Sauce – Tomato – tiny bit of salt on top – add on more parm sub if you want! Enjoy SOOOO GOOD!!!

Recipe: Vegan Taco Salad


SO last night as I was thinking what to pack for lunch (I’ve not gone out for lunch in weeks – it feels good! πŸ™‚ ) I came across what has turned out to be a brilliant solution to the left overs from my burrito extravaganza last week! Here it is πŸ™‚

The completed, mixed yummy salad πŸ™‚

Ingredients:

  • about 3 tablespoons of my Nacho Cheese
  • 1 cup of cut up romaine lettuce
  • 1/2 cup of left over Spanish rice (Zatarains)
  • 3 Tablespoons your favorite salsa
  • 2 Tablespoons Vegan sour cream
  • 1/3 cup Vegan refried black beans
  • 1/2 cup tomato
  • 1/2 cup tortilla chips
  • 1 small avocado

Layers from the bottom up:

  • Lettuce
  • Crushed up tortilla chips
  • Rice
  • Beans
  • Cheese
  • Tomato
  • Avocado
  • Mix together the salsa and Vegan sour cream – use this as “dressing”…only use what you want πŸ™‚

VOILA! YUMMMMM….