Double Chocolate Vegan Brownies

Good evening friends,

These brownies are perfect for non-vegans and vegans alike! I think they are the best brownie recipe I have ever made. They are super easy and can be made with everyday ingredients!

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup of mashed avocado (about 1 small avocado)
  • 1/4 cup of unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 cup of white or whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup of maple syrup
  • 1 tsp of baking soda
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup of brewed coffee
  • 1/4 cup of water
  • 1 1/2 cups of chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees F). Grease an 8-inch square pan with cooking spray.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the pureed avocado and applesauce until smooth. Add in the flour, cocoa powder, maple syrup, baking soda, salt, coffee, and water.
  3. Stir until smooth. Fold in 1 cup of the chocolate chips.
  4. Pour into the prepared pan and spread the batter evenly throughout the pan. Sprinkle with an additional 1/2 cup of dark chocolate chips on top. Bake for 20-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out mostly clean. If you over-bake, the brownies will have a cake-like texture.
  5. Remove and let the brownies sit out for at least 20 minutes before serving. Cut and serve, or cover and store for up to 3 days.
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Fathers Day Carrot Cake

Hello, all!

Today I decided to bake this carrot cake for fathers day, my first time baking a carrot cake and I was so nervous! This cake turned out so good my grandma even asked for the recipe! Follow the recipe as you wish, you could reduce the sugar to 1/2 cup but its your call!

Ingreidents 

  • 1 3/4 cup of flour
  • 1/4 cup of ground flax seed or ground chia seed, or a mix
  • 1 tbsp of ground cinnamon
  • 2 tsp of baking soda
  • 1 tsp of baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp of ground nutmeg and ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp of salt
  • 1 cup of canned pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup of brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup of buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup of vegetable oil (I used avocado)
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp of vanilla
  • 2 cups of grated carrots
  • 1/2 cup of shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup of your choice of raisins, walnuts, sunflower seeds, or chocolate chips

Intructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F, grease the pan of your choice, two 9′ rounds or 1 large sheet pan.
  2. In a medium bowl mix together flour, ground flax seed, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, nutmeg and ginger, and salt.
  3. Beat together pumpkin, sugar, buttermilk, vanilla, oil, and eggs.
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until just combined.
  5. Fold the carrots, coconut and other ingredients of your choice.
  6. Pour the batter into the pan of your choice and bake for 30 minutes.
  7. Once a toothpick comes out clean, allow the cake to sit in the pan for 10 minutes to cool, once the 10 minutes is cool, transfer to a cooling rack.
  8. Cool completely before icing.

 

Twice Baked Potatoes

Good evening everyone!

The thunderstorms on my end of town have been crazy, the weather has been up and down. Hot in the morning, the storm rolls in and the temperature drops 10 degrees. My family scored a huge bunch of fresh chives from the farmers market this week and it inspired me to make these twice baked potatoes.

Ingredients (serves five)

  • 1/2 cup of chives
  • 1 cup of cheddar cheese
  • 2 tbsp of sour cream
  • 2 tbsp of butter
  • 1 tsp of pepper
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • five large sized potatoes

Instructions 

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F, pierce the potatoes with a fork and rub the potatoes with oil, bake for 45 minutes.
  2. Once the potatoes are cooked through, cut a slit through the center of the potatoes, scoop out the flesh of the potatoes and add to the rest of the ingredients.
  3. Mix the potato mixture and add bake into the flesh back into the shells.
  4. Bake the potatoes for 15 more minutes and enjoy!

 

Shakshuka

Holy cow!!

Sorry I have been MIA! I am starting a new job next week and I am been scrambling to prepare for it! Anyways, this recipe is a delicious Middle Eastern dish. It is surprisingly easy and has such a wonderful flavor. This recipe is great if you want to impress your guests with a “fancy” dish at a low cost with little cooking knowledge! The best part about this dish is that it can be served at brunch or at dinner!!

Ingredients (serves four)

  • ½ onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 3 tsp of chili powder
  • ½ cup of veggie broth
  • 1 28 ounces can of tomatoes
  • 4 Eggs
  • 2 cups of kale or spinach, finely chopped
  • ½ cup of feta

Note: The number of eggs can be adjusted depending on your crowd, I normally do 4 but you can fit up to 6 eggs with this recipe!

Instructions 

  1. SAUCE: Saute onions until translucent, add garlic until fragrant, 2 tsp of chili powder, veggie broth, and tomatoes, simmer for 10-15 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly, blend until smooth in a blender.
  2. POTATOES: Saute the potatoes in the same pan the sauce was in with 1 tsp of chili powder, until brown on the outside. Add the sauce to the pan (be careful of splatters) and simmer for 10-15 minutes.
  3. EGG/SPINACH: Stir in the greens, use a spoon to make little holes for the eggs on top of the sauce. Crack the eggs directly into the warm sauce and cover. With the heat on low (sauce barely bubbling) and the cover on, cook the eggs for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and keep the cover on for another 5 minutes. This should give you medium-soft yolks. Top with goat cheese and serve with crusty bread for sopping up that sauce.

Old Fashioned Soft & Buttery Oatmeal Cookies

Good evening,

I have been searching for a good oatmeal cookie recipe for so long! To hard, to crunchy, did not flatten, who knew a cookie would cause so much trouble? These were perfect and took some tweaky but I got it! Do not skip beating the egg and sugar together because it helps them stay light and fluffy!

Ingredients:

1 cup unsalted butter, softened, 1 cup granulated sugar, 1/2 cup packed brown sugar, 1 large egg, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, 1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 3/4 teaspoon baking soda, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/8 teaspoon baking powder, 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg, 1 1/2 cups quick cooking oats

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat butter and both sugars until fluffy. Mix in egg and vanilla until well blended. Combine flour, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, baking powder and nutmeg in a bowl. Stir into butter mixture. Gently stir in oats until well blended.
  3. Shape dough into rounded golfball-sized balls (about 2 Tbsp. each). Place on prepared bakingsheet (I fit 9 per sheet). Flatten with the bottom of a measuring cup dipped in sugar.
  4. Bake for 8-10 minutes. Let cool on baking sheet 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

 

Mexican Millet Salad with Chili Lime Tofu

Hello all, I tried this recipe yesterday on my family and it was such a hit I had to share it with all of you! Great for a BBQ as a side or a lunch for work. The tofu can be substituted for shrimp or chicken.

Millet salad with chili lime tofu (serves four)

  • ½ tsp of dried chile flakes
  • 2 tsp of grated lime zest
  • 3 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 cup of hulled millet
  • 20 slices of tofu
  • 2 large ears of sweet corn
  • 1 bunch of asparagus
  • 1 firm ripe avocado, peeled pit removed and diced
  • ½ cup cilantro leaves, coarsely chopped

Dressing

  • 3 tbsp lime juice
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • Chile flakes
  • ½ tsp of sugar
  1. Add the chile flakes, lime zest and 1 tbsp of olive oil in a shallow glass or ceramic bowl, add the tofu and stir to coat then cover and set aside.
  2. Heat a large saucepan over medium-high heat, add the millet and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes or until fragrant
  3. Add 2 cups of water to the millet and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the water is absorbed. Removed from the heat and set aside, covered, to steam for 10 minutes. Fluff the grains with a fork and transfer to a large bowl to cool completely.
  4. Heat a large skillet over high heat, drizzle the corn and asparagus with the remaining oil, cook the corn, turning 6-8 minutes, or until lightly charred and tender. Remove and set aside to cool slightly, then cut the kernels from the ears. Cook the asparagus and tofu for 2 minutes each side until tender crisp and to tofu is crisp. Add all but the tofu to the millet.
  5. Make the dressing, add to the salad and top with the tofu.

Blueberry Banana Muffins

Wow! How has a week gone by since I posted last?! I spent the week working and helping a friend prepare to leave for an opportunity of a lifetime. I decided to create the individual a “care package” encasing these muffins, and oatmeal cookies which will be posted tomorrow!

I always like to make recipes healthier, adding my own tweaks, I tried to make these as healthy as possible, my family loved them, they were very moist! If you do not like large quantities of sugar in your diet you can reduce the sugar within this recipe.

Ingredients (makes 15 muffins)

1 egg, 3 very ripe medium bananas, 1/2 cup of unsweetened applesauce, 1/2 cup of sour cream (fat content does not matter), 2 cups of flour (all-purpose or whole wheat), 1/2 cup of brown sugar, 1 tbsp of baking powder, 1/2 tsp of salt,  2 cups of fresh or frozen blueberries.

Instructions 

  1. Preheat the oven 350 F
  2. In a large bowl mash the bananas, add the egg, applesauce, and sour cream, blend well
  3. In a medium bowl mix all dry ingredients
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix well until all incorporated
  5. Add 1 tsp of flour to the blueberries, ensure that all the blueberries are coated in flour, add to the mix, fold in lightly
  6. Add the mixture to greased muffin tins or lined muffin tins, bake for 25 minutes, check and bake until a toothpick comes out clean and brown on top

Note: In step five, flour is added to the blueberries to stop them from sinking to the bottom of the muffins, it is very important you do this if you do not want your blueberries sitting in the bottom of the muffins!

Vegetarian Italian Meatballs Recipe

Hello, folks! Happy long weekend to all of those celebrating, for the long weekend a family gets together with a delicious dinner is always on schedule, and for this dinner, an abundance of meatball subs and vegan peanut butter pie was enjoyed!

This recipe is super easy and can be doubled which will allow you to freeze the meatballs for later to have with pasta! Vegetarian meatballs can get expensive so making your own is a great way to save money and to be honest, these are better than any store bought vegetarian meatball!

Ingredients (serves 8-10) 

2 lbs of vegetarian ground beef substitute (I use Yves original ground round), 2 eggs, 2/3 cup of Italian breadcrumbs (I use panko breadcrumbs with Italian seasoning), 1/2 cup of parmesan cheese, 1/3 cup of fresh minced parsley, 1/3 of cooked chopped spinach, 1/3 cup of minced onions, 3 cloves of minced garlic, 1 tsp of Italian seasoning, 1/4 tsp of pepper, 1/2 tsp of salt

Note: You need just enough milk to moisten the breadcrumbs, moistening the bread crumbs with milk allows the meatballs to stay moist

Instructions 

  1. Moisten the breadcrumbs with the milk
  2. Whisk the eggs and mix with the ground round, add all the other ingredients, I noticed that the recipe was quite salty if you are sensitive to salt like me, omit the tsp of salt, mix well so all of the ingredients are well incorporated
  3. Shape all of the meat balls into the size of your choice, for pasta, larger meatballs are better, for subs smaller meatballs are preferred
  4. Bake the meatballs on a cookie sheet at 350 for 25 minutes
  5. While the meatballs are cooking prepare a large baking pan 9×13 with sauce at the bottom, once the meatballs are done cooking, place in the sauced pan, add a very small amount of sauce on top of each meatball
  6. Baked covered for 20 minutes, bake uncovered for 10 minutes, and enjoy

Note: If you plan on freezing the meatballs omit steps 5 and 6, this leaves the meatballs par-baked, bake for another 30 minutes at 350 from frozen

Super Easy Veggie Stir Fry

It’s Monday?! That’s how I feel every week because I’m lucky enough to work weekends. Today was such a gorgeous day and I spent it inside at work, that’s when I decided to make this veggie stir fry so I could enjoy the beautiful gifts of the Earth inside! I love to make this with rice or noodles, but my favourite is quinoa! Did you know quinoa has 10g of protein for just a 50g (1/4 cup) serving size, this is a great alternative to animal products (chicken 12.5g/50g, beef 18g/50g, pork 15g/50g) and is filled with vitamins and minerals so you can enjoy your meatless Monday without sacrificing nutrition!

Another reason why I love this recipe is that you can use really any set of vegetables you have in your fridge and are not limited to what is listed below, when in season I also love to use zucchini, eggplant, and cauliflower!

Ingredients (serving size: 6 people)

1 bell pepper chopped, 1 onion diced, 2 cups of sliced mushrooms, 1 cup of sliced cabbage, 1 cup of chopped carrots, 2 cups of chopped broccoli, 1 cup of snap peas, 2 cups of fresh spinach, 2 cups of a grain of your choice (quinoa, rice, noodles, etc.), 1 tbsp of oil

Sweet Garlic Sauce: 1/2 soy sauce, 2 cloves of mined garlic, 1 tbsp of minced ginger, 1 tbsp of honey (maple syrup if vegan)

Note: This recipe can be made with or without an added protein, I like to enjoy it with stirfried tofu, for non vegans/vegetarians chicken, fish, beef, etc. would all go well with this vibrant dish

Steps 

  1. Prepare all vegetables as stated above, heat a large skillet on medium heat and add oil, at the same time, prepare grain of your choice to package specifications
  2. Add onions to pan, cook for 5 minutes until translucent, add mushrooms, cook for another 5 minutes, add all the other vegetables except the spinach and cook for 10 minutes, until vegetables soften and brown slightly
  3. While vegetables are cooking add soy sauce and honey/maple syrup to a small sauce pan, bring to a gentle boil stirring often, add garlic and ginger, simmer for 10 minutes, taste sauce adjust sweetness by adding more honey/maple syrup
  4. Once the vegetables are cooked, add the spinach, cook for 2 minutes until wilted, add the desired amount of prepared sauce ontop of the vegetables, simmer the vegetables in the sauce for two minutes
  5. If desired add grain to the vegetable mixture, serve ontop of the grain, or serve along side the grain

Note: Omit step 3 if you are using your own store bought sauce, if this sauce does not appeal to you, plain soy sauce works great as well.