Category Archives: Wheat-Free

Sun Dried Tomato Basil Lentil Burgers

Happy Monday! How was your weekend?

Mine was (not surprisingly) busy, but this time it was filled with outings rather than mounds of homework… and that’s just how I like it. However, being out so much didn’t leave much time for food preparation for the week. When this happens, I usually try to make the simplest recipe that I know will keep me adequately fueled.

It’s times like these that I revert to old favorites that I can practically make in my sleep. Don’t let the time simplicity fool you; these sun-dried tomato basil lentil burgers are full of flavor! I love eating them on a big romaine lettuce salad filled to the brim with fresh veggies and topped with a drizzle of dijon mustard. Yum!

Sun Dried Tomato Basil Lentil Burgers 

Makes 4 burgers 

  • 8 oz precooked lentils (i.e. from Trader Joe’s; you can make your own if you have more time, but the flavor will be different)
  • 1/3 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves
  • 2 tsp vegan worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tsp Braggs Liquid Aminos (or soy sauce/tamari)
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  1. In a food processor, pulse all ingredients until just combined. Be careful not to process too much or the mixture will become paste-like. Leave a little texture instead!
  2. Divide mixture into 4 equal pieces. Shape into patties/burgers using your hands.
  3. Cook on a medium high heat in a non-stick skilled for ~3 minutes on each side, or until a gold-brown crust is achieved.
  4. Enjoy on a bun, salad, or as is! They’re even lovely cold.
Do you make your own homemade veggie burgers? What’s your favorite flavor combination? 
Have a lovely day!
Mandiee
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Vegan Apple Streusel Muffins with Oatmeal Crumb Topping

These muffins speak for themselves.

Fluffy muffins filled with sweet cinnamon-coated apples and topped with a beautiful brown-sugar oatmeal streusel.

 

Why? Because let’s be honest: it’s really all about that beautiful crumb. It’s perfect for delicately picking apart piece by piece with your fingers, savoring every bite or just grabbing for an afternoon on the go. With bakery-style muffins, this time vegan and just a little bit healthier, it’s good that muffins can be enjoyed all day long… not that that ever stopped anyone before.

Vegan Apple Streusel Muffins with Oatmeal Crumb Topping

Makes 12 muffins 

Streusel Topping: 

  • 1/4 cup flour (can use AP Gluten-free)
  • 1/3 cup oats (use certified-GF if you have a sensitivity)
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 4 TBS Earth Balance

Batter: 

  • 1-1/4 cup flour (can use AP Gluten-free)
  • 1 cup rolled oats (use certified-GF if you have a sensitivity)
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 3 TBS oil
  • 1.5 tsp egg replacer + 2 TBS warm water (prepared) OR 1 TBS flax meal + 3 TBS warm water (prepared)
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 large apple, chopped
  1. Preheat oven to 350*F. Grease or line a muffin tin.
  2. To make streusel topping: Combine flour, oats, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Cut Earth Balance into mixture using two knifes. The texture should be crumbly.
  3. To make batter: In a large bowl, stir together flour, oats, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. In a separate bowl, mix almond milk, oil, prepared egg replacer mixture, and vanilla extract. Pour wet mixture into dry and mix to combine. Stir in chopped apples.
  4. Evenly distribute muffin batter into 12 muffin cups. Top with a generous tablespoon or two of streusel topping.
  5. Bake for 20-22 minutes, or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Remove muffins from oven and let cool in muffin tin for 10 minutes before transferring to a cooling wrack.
  6. Enjoy warm or cold.

What’s your favorite kind of muffin? Do you like sweet, bakery-style muffins or more hearty ones? 

 

Have a lovely day!

Mandiee

Au Naturale

Some things are just better left au naturale.

Case in point: since making my college decision, my mom and I keep joking about the Californification process. I’m already apart of USC’s Class of 2016 Facebook page (900 members strong so far!), so I have an idea of the personality of my class. One thing I’ve noticed: at least 80% of the girls are blond. My mom half-teases me that I’ll join that number soon enough.

While I can’t say I’m not curious about what I’d look like as a blonde, I really do love my natural hair color and would hate to lose it. Who knows, maybe as  a brunette, I’ll stand out in the crowd (for better or for worse).

What I do know, however, is that I am happy with who I am. If I feel like changing my hair color (or anything else for that matter), it will be for fun, not because I feel like I have to in order to fit in.

blonde? brunette? who knows!

Just like with these vegan banana donuts, some things are better just left au naturale. You can dress them up with a simple glaze, dip them in chocolate, or just leave them as is. No matter what, they will still be the same wonderfully delicious donuts inside. And that’s what counts.

Vegan Banana Donuts 

Makes 6 donuts 

  • 1/2 cup + 2 TBS flour (can use All-Purpose Gluten-free)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1.5 bananas, mashed (should yield a little more than 1/2 cup)
  • 1/4 cup oil (coconut is lovely here, but canola will work)
  • 1 TBS Ener-G Egg Replacer + 4 TBS water, prepared according to directions on box
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 350*F. Coat donut pan with cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt.
  3. In a small bowl, combine mashed bannas, oil, prepared egg replacer, vanilla extract, and sugar with a fork until evenly incorporated.
  4. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients. Mix until just combined.
  5. Evenly distribute batter among 6 donut cavities. (I recommend using a small ice cream scooper for this.)
  6. Bake for 15 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the donut comes out clean.
  7. Let donuts rest in pan for ~5 minutes before removing. Place on wire rack to cool.
Have you ever changed something about your appearance? What was it? And do you think I would look good blonde? Haha.
Have a lovely day!
Mandiee

Breakfast Salad with Fruit and Chocolate Protein Dressing

Hiya! How was your holiday? Whether you celebrated Passover, Easter, or just a lovely weekend, I hope your days were filled with good food, loving family and friends, and lots of laugher.

 

I had originally planned to (finally) post my recipe for vegan butternut squash mac and cheese, but I thought a detoxifying recipe was more appropriate after what might have been an indulgent weekend. So what better to get back on the healthy train than a salad first thing in the morning?

I prefer sweet breakfasts over savory ones, but lately my usual breakfast options have been feeling a little too sweet. Rather than craving oat bakes or green monster fruit smoothies, I’ve found myself wanting  salads…but ones with crisp fruit and crunchy romaine. So what’s a girl to do? Essentially, make a refreshing, protein-rich, deconstructed green smoothie in salad form, that’s what!

 

Cheers to healthy balance, including indulgent holiday desserts and nutrient-packed breakfast salads to get back on track deliciously.

Breakfast Salad with Fruit and Chocolate Protein Dressing 

  • 3 cups romaine lettuce, chopped
  • 1/2 apple, chopped
  • 1/4 banana, chopped
  • 1/2 cup strawberries, chopped
  • 1/2 cup blueberries, chopped
  • chopped almonds (optional)

For the salad: place romaine on the bottom of a pretty bowl or to-go container. Carefully arrange apple, banana, strawberries, and blueberries on top. Add almonds, if desired.

  • 2 TBS hemp protein powder (or 1 serving of your favorite powder)
  • 1 TBS cocoa powder
  • 2 TBS pumpkin or applesauce
  • dash cinnamon
  • stevia, to taste
  • almond milk, to thin

For the dressing: using a fork, combine all ingredients until well mixed, adding enough almond milk to thin the dressing to desired consistency.  Drizzle liberally over salad or pack up in a little container to-go.

 

Do you prefer sweet or savory breakfasts? Would you be open to eating a salad for breakfast? 

 

Have a lovely day!

Mandiee

Caramelized Banana-Stuffed Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting

My world has been completely flipped upside down in the past 48 hours. All I can say is that I’m more excited than ever to start my college life! I am still working out the details, but I can’t wait to share the good news with you all soon.

In celebration, I would like to share a recipe for Caramelized Banana-Stuffed Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting with you.

As usual, this recipe grew out of necessity. I scored a large bunch of slightly spotty bananas on sale for 19 cents, but didn’t know what to do with them. After making banana soft serve, roasting/sauteeing bananas is my favorite way to eat the sweet fruit, so I developed the idea into a full-fledged dessert.

Stuffing the bananas in the center of the cupcake definitely amps up the traditional vanilla cupcake and is a delicious suprise to bite into. Naturally peanut butter frosting completes the flavor profile. Peanut butter and bananas were just meant for each other! (Add a chocolate drizzle to the mix, and I guarantee your taste buds will thank you.)

Even though this recipe has a few steps (cupcakes, filling, frosting), it’s actually quite easy to make! I suppose if you were crunched on time, you could also make a boxed mix for the cupcakes and just use the filling + frosting to dress them up. However, with a cupcake recipe as easy as this, you’ll never need another boxed mix again!

So whether you’re celebrating a big announcement like me or just another beautiful day in the life of you, I hope these cupcakes will make your life just a little bit sweeter.

Caramelized Banana-Stuffed Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting 

(makes 6 cupcakes)

  • 1 recipe vanilla cupcakes (see below)
  • 1 recipe caramelized banana filling (see below)
  • 1 recipe peanut butter frosting (see below)
  • melted chocolate, for drizzling (optional)
  • chopped bananas, for garnish (optional)
  1. Prepare all recipes.
  2. Cut a circle out of each cooled cupcake. This should make a little cone-shaped well big enough for you to stuff Banana filling into.
  3. Place a dollop of banana filling into each well. It can come a little over the top of the well, but it should not be too much.
  4. Once banana filling has set a bit inside the cupcake, frost cupcakes with peanut butter frosting.
  5. Using a fork, drizzle each cupcake with melted chocolate, if desired. Garnish with chopped bananas.

 

Easy Vegan Vanilla Cupcakes

(makes 6 cupcakes)

  • 1/2 cup non-dairy milk (I used almond)
  • 1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup + 2 TBS flour
  • 1 TBS arrowroot (or cornstarch)
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • dash cinnamon (optional)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3 TBS oil
  • 1/4 cup + 2TBS NuNaturals Stevia Baking Blend or organic sugar
  • 1-1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  1. Preheat oven to 350*F. Line a small muffin tin with cupcake holders.
  2. In a liquid measuring cup, combine non-dairy milk and apple cider vinegar. Let sit for a few minutes to curdle. (This creates vegan buttermilk.)
  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, arrowroot/cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. (*For best results, sift them together.)
  4. In another bowl, use a fork to combine oil, stevia baking blend/sugar, and vanilla extract. Add in almond milk mixture from step 2. Mix until no clumps remain.
  5. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients. Mix until well-combined.
  6. Evenly distribute batter between 6 muffin cups, filling them up about 2/3 way full. (I use an ice cream scooper or measuring cup for this.)
  7. Bake for 20-22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out clean.
  8. Cool on a cooling rack.

**

Caramelized Banana Filling 

  • 1TBS earth balance or coconut oil
  • 2 ripe bananas, chopped
  • 1 TBS maple syrup, or more to taste
  • pinch of cinnamon and salt (optional)
  1. Heat a non-stick pan over medium-low heat.
  2. Add earth balance. Once hot, add bananas.
  3. Cook for about 5-7 minutes, stirring often to prevent burning. The bananas should start to reduce and become saucy.
  4. Add in maple syrup. Cook for ~2 more minutes, caramelizing the bananas further with the sugar from the syrup.
  5. Remove from heat to cool + thicken a little bit.
**
Simple Vegan Peanut Butter Frosting 
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter
  • 3 TBS Earth Balance or coconut oil, at room temperature
  •  1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • ~1-2 TBS non-dairy milk, to thin (if needed)
  1. In a large bowl or stand-mixer, beat peanut butter and earth balance until light and fluffy. Add in vanilla extract and mix until combined.
  2. Slowly beat in confectioners’ sugar until frosting becomes thick. Add in a little non-dairy milk at a time, if needed, to thin the frosting to desired consistency.
Note: this recipe is naturally vegan, but it can also be gluten-free, fat-free, sugar-free, and relatively healthy depending on what ingredients you use. Email me at kabochavore [at] me [dot] com if you need ideas on how to do this. Cupcakes for all!

What are you celebrating today? Are you a pb + banana fan?

Have a lovely day!

Mandiee

Raspberry White Chocolate Chip Scones

Hey there, beautiful people! How was your weekend? I hope you enjoyed some yummy treats!

I had a pretty relaxing but busy weekend. My favorite part was definitely hanging out with my mom! I often don’t get to see her very much—she works a lot—so quality time is always a treat.

I also babysat a 10-year-old girl. We always have a great time together! This time we took to the kitchen and made chocolate-covered pretzels with carmel twists. (More info to come; I have lots of photos to sort through since she was my little photography helper.)

It was so much fun! I also brought raspberry white chocolate chip scones for her family to enjoy. Bringing a treat with me is definitely becoming a tradition. I’ve already brought donuts and cookies, so this time I wanted to try something a little bit different.

Well, these were exactly what I was looking for. I often forget about scones since they’re not the usual cookie-brownie-cupcake-donut thing, but they’re always a crowd pleaser regardless. My family is especially in love with them because of our British roots.

Since these scones are vegan and refined-sugar free, they’re not exactly traditional, but I think my British great-grandmother would be proud anyway. On the scone spectrum, these are more doughy and moist rather than hard and dry. Perfect for serving with afternoon tea!

However, I admit I’m a little bit early with the berry inspiration; the warm weather is upon us but the fresh raspberry crop is not. Fortunately, you can easily use frozen raspberries (which is what I did) to enjoy these berry-filled treats all year round.

As my official taste-tester, my uncle, would say, “These should go on the ‘If you own a bakery someday’ list.” Maybe I should start considering this possibility more seriously? Who knows!

Raspberry White Chocolate Chip Scones 

Makes about 11-12 scones

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 TBS baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup oil
  • 1/3 cup  agave
  • 1 TBS vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup hot water
  • 1/3 cup white chocolate chips
  • 1 cup raspberries (fresh or frozen)
  • For the glaze: 1/2 cup white chocolate chips + 1/2 tsp coconut oil (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 350*F. Grease cookie sheet or line with parchment paper/silicon baking mat.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, and salt.
  3. Add in oil, agave, and vanilla extract. Mix until a thick, dry batter starts to form.
  4. Stir in hot water until wetter batter comes together.
  5. Gently stir in white chocolate chips and raspberries. Mix until evenly distributed.
  6. Use an ice-cream scoop with a spring (or just a measuring cup) to drop ~1/3 cup of the batter on the cookie sheet. Lightly brush the tops of the scones with a little extra oil, if desired.
  7. Bake for 14-16 minutes, flipping the cookie sheet half-way through.
  8. Remove scones from the oven and let stand on cookie sheet for at least 10-15 minutes to set.
  9. Drizzle with white chocolate chip glaze. To make: melt 1/2 cup white chocolate chips in the microwave or on a double boiler. Stir in coconut oil, if using. Use a fork to drizzle over scones.

~~~~~~

Notes: this recipe is completely adaptable. For the flour, you can make it gluten-free by using Bob’s Red Mill AP gluten-free flour, or simply make the scones a little more nutritious with whole wheat pastry or spelt flour. For the oil, use canola oil or another light oil (like safflower), or add an extra depth of flavor with coconut oil. For the agave, you can also try honey or maple syrup (though it will change the flavor). And, finally, you can use commercial or vegan white chocolate chips (which you can order online). The vegan white chocolate chips are hard to find, so just make sure to check the ingredients of the ones you use if remaining completely dairy-free is a concern.

~~~~~~

What nationality is your family? What are your favorite traditional ethnic desserts? 

 

Have a lovely day!

Mandiee

 

Healthy Red Velvet Pudding

Hey there! How are you doing today? I hope it’s a beautiful Thursday where you are.

Fortunately, the countdown to the weekend is on!

Source

As one of my friends said today, “After this test, my brain is officially taking a vacation for 2 weeks.” Whether you have fun weekend plans or are gearing up for 2 weeks of spring break like me, we can all use a little relaxation. Now that I don’t have to take another test until April, I’m ready to give myself brain a little break. Lots of baking is on the agenda… after sleeping, of course. I have to make up for all the lost time!

Speaking of baking, here’s a quick recipe I came up with this week due to my busy schedule. I was craving something chocolatey but also wanted something with a little sustenance to keep my brain alert. As a breakfast experiment, I decided to create a healthy red velvet pudding. It’s brimming with ruby red beets, dark chocolate cocoa powder, and dash of cinnamon. For staying powder, I also added a scoop of protein powder. I don’t know what it is lately, but my body is craving easily-digested protein.

Ask and you shall receive.

Healthy Red Velvet Pudding

Serves 1

  • 3 small steamed beets (130 g – about 3/4 cup chopped)
  • 1-1/2 TBS cocoa powder (dark chocolate preferred)
  • 4-6 TBS almond milk
  • dash cinnamon
  • stevia, to taste (I used ~1/2 packet NuNaturals Stevia)
  • 1 serving protein powder (I used Natural Sun Warrior; adjust sweetness if yours is sweetened)
  1. Add beets, cocoa powder, 4 TBS almond milk, cinnamon, stevia, and protein powder (if using) to a blender or food processor. (*Use a high-powered blender, like a Vita-Mix, for smoothest results.)
  2. Puree until smooth, adding more almond milk to get things going and achieve desired consistency.
  3. Enjoy chilled for best results.
What’s your favorite way to relax? Are you a beet fan? 
I used to be afraid of beets; something about the bright red color and strange sight of canned beets freaked me out. Now that I’ve tried the wonders of roasted beets, I love them. They’re sweet like candy!
Have a lovely day!
Mandiee