2 medium eggplants, sliced length-wise
1 bunch kale leaves (or spinach)
4 cups sliced mushrooms
1 large onion, slicedBéchemel Ingredients:
3 cups nondairy milk
1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked in warm water for at least 20 minutes
3 heaping tablespoons arrowroot flour or cornstarch
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1 teaspoon saltParmesan Cheese Ingredients:
1/2 cup raw walnuts
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1/2 teaspoon salt
1. To make the béchemel sauce: Blend all the ingredients together. Add the mixture to a medium saucepan over high heat and whisk for 5-10 minutes until thickened.
2. To make the parmesan cheese: Add the ingredients to a blender and pulse until the walnuts are just ground. Be careful not to over blend into a paste.
3. Saute the onions and mushrooms for 5-7 minutes. Set aside.
4. In a large glass baking dished lined with parchment paper, layer in the following order: marinara sauce, eggplant, béchemel sauce, kale, mushrooms. Repeat until you run out.
5. Sprinkle half of the parmesan cheese on top. Bake for 1 hour covered with foil and 1 hour without foil. (I like my eggplant really soft, so feel free to lessen the time if you prefer your eggplant more chewy.)
6. Sprinkle with the remaining parmesan cheese and serve.
Need a dish that is guaranteed to impress? This is definitely the one.
I love this recipe because it includes everything we love about lasagna–the warmth, the comfort, and the heartiness. But, unlike traditional lasagna, my version is incredibly healthful. Not only does it leave out all animal products, it’s also made entirely of whole foods! Rather than using pasta noodles made with processed white flour, I instead use very thin slices of butternut squash. This makes the lasagna more healthful, more flavorful, and more colorful!
1/3 cup fresh basil
1 teaspoon black pepper
1. To make the sausage: Saute the carrot and onion for 10-15 minutes. Once browned, place vegetables into a food processor along with all the spices and flax. Add cooked quinoa and lentils and pulse just till ingredients begin to stick together (about 10-15 times). Place mixture in a pan and brown.
2. To make the ricotta: Place cashews, nondairy milk, lemon juice, garlic, and maple syrup in a food processor and blend till just smooth (remember, ricotta is somewhat grainy rather than completely whipped). Add in the basil, Italian herb blend, salt and pepper and pulse until blended in.
3. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
4. Spread a thin layer of marinara onto the bottom of a glass dish.
5. Layer the squash on top. Avoid overlapping pieces as much as possible.
6. Place a layer of ricotta on top.
7. Spread a layer of sausage crumbles on top.
8. Add another layer of squash and then another layer of marinara sauce.
9. Start again at step 6 and repeat until near the top of the dish. Top with any remaining ricotta.
10. Cover with tin foil and bake for 40 minutes or until a knife can be easily inserted all the way through.
Have you ever looked up the ingredients in traditional spinach dip? You’ll find things like butter, mayo, heavy cream, and dairy cheese. It’s not really fair to call it “spinach” dip. “Saturated fat” dip would be more accurate.
The really sad thing is that none of these unhealthful ingredients are necessary for making a fantastic dip. We just include them because we always have. But just because we always have done something doesn’t mean we always have to keep doing it. We need not be slaves to custom or tradition or habit. I think most people would agree that custom, tradition, or habit aren’t good enough reasons to continue causing harm to ourselves or others, ESPECIALLY when there are quick and easy alternatives out there.
My version of spinach dip takes the spinach seriously. And, in addition to using a whole package of thawed frozen spinach, I also use a whole head of kale. Like spinach, kale is loaded with vitamins A, C, K and folic acid, and it’s also a rich source of calcium and iron. Kale also contains carotenoids, which are potent antioxidants with natural inflammatory properties that help prevent some cancers.
16 oz. organic frozen spinach, thawed
1 bunch kale, chopped
1/2 cup raw parsley
1 cup raw cashews, soaked in warm water about 20 minutes
3 cloves of garlic
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tsp sea salt
5 Tbsp Nutritional Yeast Flakes
1-15 oz can white beans
(optional: Daiya cheese)
1. Add all your ingredients (except beans and cheese) to a food processor or blender. Blend until smooth.
2. Pulse in the beans.
3. Pour spinach dip into a heat-safe serving dish. Add the Daiya cheese on top if using and place in a 350 degree oven for 15 min.
4. Serve warm with veggie sticks, bread squares and rice crackers.
I don’t like to do taste tests while I’m cooking when I follow a recipe for the first time. I prefer to wait till the dish is complete to assess and then make notes in my cookbook if necessary. The first time I was cooking this dish, though, I took a little spoonful of the filling just before I put it in the oven and was totally impressed. (To think I had only picked this dish out because I like eggplant!) The tahini makes the filling so deliciously rich and creamy. The finished result is even better with a sauce that has just the right amount of sweetness and tang. The ingredients are so clean and simple but they come together in a way that truly surprised me. The only note I made for this was to double it for next time!
3 cups cooked lentils
1 tbsp miso paste
3 tbsp tahini
2 tbsp fresh minced oregano
2 tbsp fresh minced basil
2 tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup sundried tomatoes, soaked in warm water for 20 minutes
1 can diced tomatoes
1 small can tomato paste
1/4 tsp salt
2 garlic cloves
2 tbsp chopped fresh basil
2 tbsp shallot, minced
1. Cut off the ends of the eggplants. With flat end down on the cutting board, slice into 1/4-inch strips.
2. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Lay the eggplant strips flat on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes and then set aside until cool enough to handle.
3. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, mix together all the remaining filling ingredients. Set aside.
4. Blend all the sauce ingredients together in a blender until fully combined.
5. Spread 1 cup of the sauce on a baking dish. On a separate work surface lay each eggplant strip flat and spread 1 heaping tablespoon of filling (though if you like your rollatini thick there’s no need to hold back!). Roll up into a cylinder and and place atop of the bed of sauce.
6. Pour the remaining sauce on top and cover with aluminum foil. Bake for 30 minutes, until heated through and the sauce is bubbly.
Source: Thrive Foods by Brendan Brazier
This “pizza” has become a staple in our home because it’s really tasty and makes enough leftovers for several lunches. The recipe comes from Thrive by Brendan Brazier, the professional Ironman triathlete (and a vegan, of course). Brazier’s recipes are based on the concept of “high net-gain nutrition,” meaning eating foods that leave you with more energy, not less. According to Brazier, most foods in the average North American’s diet require almost as much energy to digest and process as they contain, therefore the net gain is extremely low. As a result, people feel weaker and hungrier, and their bodies are less resilient and their health more compromised. However, nutrient-dense whole foods–those foods that have not been refined and stripped of their value during processing–eliminate excess work for the body thereby leaving us with more energy, more physical resilience, and more mental clarity. It’s a simple concept that makes a lot of sense. I’d highly recommend this book to anyone interested in fitness, or health in general. Plus, the recipes are great.
3 cups cooked brown rice
3 cups cooked lentils
4 tsp curry powder
2 tsp dried basil
Sea salt to taste
2 yellow or orange tomatoes, chopped
2 yellow or orange bell peppers, sliced
1 medium sweet potato or 3 large carrots, thinly sliced
1 cup green onions, chopped
2 tsp oregano
2 tsp thyme
1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
2. In a food processor or by hand, combine all crust ingredients until mixture starts to ball up.
3. Lightly oil an 11-by-15-inch baking tray. Spread crust mixture evenly on tray.
4. Sprinkle nutritional yeast on top of the crust. Use as much or as little as desired (we use a lot!). Add toppings.
5. Bake for approximately 1 hour (this may vary slightly depending on the moisture content of the vegetables).
Ingredients (Serves 4):
4 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
3/4 cup vegetable broth
2 teaspoon arrowroot dissolved in 1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon tamarind concentrate
3 tablespoons agave or maple syrup
2 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
1 teaspoon liquid smoke
1/8 teaspoon cayenne (optional)
1 1/2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced into chunks or rounds
12 ounces tempeh, cut into 1/2-inch slices
1. Spray a casserole pan (preferably not glass) with nonstick cooking spray.
2. In a medium-size mixing bowl, whisk together all the ingredients (except the sweet potatoes and tempeh). Make sure to get the tamarind dissolved.
3. Place the sweet potatoes and tempeh in the prepared pan. Pour the sauce over them. Be sure everything is coated well, using your hands if necessary. You can bake immediately or let marinate for at least an hour to get more flavor into the tempeh.
4. When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Cover the pan with tinfoil and bake for about 25 minutes.
5. Remove from the oven and toss out the tinfoil. Flip the tempeh and sweet potatoes, making sure to scrape the bottom with a spatula in case anything is sticking.
6. Bake for another 30 minutes, flipping everything once. The sweet potatoes should be tender but not mushy, and the sauce should be thickened and coating everything. Give thanks and enjoy!
Source: Appetite for Reduction by Isa Chandra Moskowitz