Quick and Easy Vegan Red Lentil Bolognese

Vegan Red Lentil Bolognese PinAfter my first attempt to make a Vegan Red Lentil Bolognese, Amelia improved upon it. While my version (featured in our Vegan What We Eat In A Day video on our VegansAbroad YouTube Channel) was a little easier and a one-pot bolognese, Amelia’s was more flavorful and closer to a conventional bolognese.

Some people recommend cooking the lentils in the same pot as the sauce, but we weren’t happy with how they turned out. We simmered the sauce with the lentils for about 45 minutes and felt like they still could have cooked longer. So in Amelia’s version, we cooked the lentils in a separate pot for about 30 minutes and that worked much better. We’re at high altitude here in Cuenca, Ecuador, so things take longer to cook here. Red lentils at sea level will probably cook in much less time.

We served our bolognese over regular linguine pasta, but it’s better if you use whole wheat pasta. Whole wheat vegan products can be difficult to find here, so sometimes we’re stuck with the regular pasta.

This recipe pairs well with our Easy Garden Salad.

If you make this recipe, please let us know your thoughts in the comments below. And please share with your friends to help spread the word about healthy plant-based eating.

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Kid-Friendly Tofu Fingers

Kid Friendly Tofu Fingers PinWhile we were visiting Amelia’s family in Atlanta, Amelia’s 9 year old niece  challenged us to make more kid-friendly vegan recipes and this Tofu Fingers recipe one of them. She really liked them, as did the whole family. She’s a VERY picky eater, so anything other than “I hate it” means she loved it. She dipped hers in ketchup, but her grandpa and I preferred BBQ sauce.

If you’re concerned about feeding organic soy to your children, rest assured it’s not only safe, but highly nutritious. Most of the myths about soy were created by the dairy industry when soy milk started eating away at their profits. The unbiased, legitimate science shows soy is actually protective against the very ailments that, ironically, dairy has been shown to cause.

One of the main concerns about soy is the phytoestrogen content that the myths claim can interfere with human hormones. Phytoestrogens are a type of plant estrogen that behaves much differently in the human body compared to mammal estrogen found in cow’s milk, which looks just like human estrogen inside our bodies.

In fact, one study found that soy was protective against early puberty in girls, whereas consumption of meat was strongly associated with early puberty in both girls and boys.

We strongly encourage you to buy only organic soy products, though. The unbiased science is far from settled on the health effects of GMO, but putting that aside, there are plenty of non-health reasons to avoid GMO products. GMO’s encourage monocrops, which are destroying the soil. They are leading to superbugs and superweeds that are resistant to even the strongest pesticides. They lead to more fertilizer and pesticide use, which contaminates water supplies. And they give corporations too much control of our food system. Please consider watching GMO OMG for an overview of the GMO industry.

Back to the recipe at hand… These Tofu Fingers are very tasty dipped in your favorite dipping sauce like ketchup, BBQ sauce, Vegan Ranch Dressing, salsa, Grandpa’s Vegan Dipping Hot Sauce, etc. They make a great afternoon snack or appetizer, or as a side dish with soup and salad.

Tofu Fingers 2

If you make this recipe, please let us know your thoughts in the comments below. And please share with your friends to help spread the word about healthy plant-based eating.

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Vegan Broccoli Soup

Vegan Broccoli Soup PinBroccoli is one of our favorite veggies, and we created this Vegan Broccoli Soup so we can eat more of it! At only 75 calories per serving with 5 grams of protein, 3 grams of fiber and 116% of your daily Vitamin C, it’s also a nutritional powerhouse!

You can make this recipe with 2 small heads of broccoli or one big head. Since you’re going to blend the ingredients, you can use the broccoli stalks, too. It’s a good use for them so they don’t go to waste. You can also save them for your homemade Easy Vegetable Broth from Scraps. Set aside 2 cups of the broccoli florets for garnish to give your soup a little more visual appeal and texture.

We used unsweetened almond milk, but feel free to use your favorite non-dairy milk. This gives the soup a creamier texture.

Our recipes are very flavorful…sometimes too flavorful for tender palettes. We used cayenne pepper to spice it up a little, but you can skip that if you want. You can also reduce or eliminate the salt if you’re avoiding it.

If you make this recipe, please let us know your thoughts in the comments below. And please share with your friends to help spread the word about healthy plant-based eating.

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Vegan Zucchini Bread

Vegan Zucchini Bread PinAmelia loves making dessert breads and I love eating them! And this Vegan Zucchini Bread is not exception!

We don’t make breads like this or our delicious Vegan Pumpkin Bread very often because we tend to eat them too quickly. But it’s a nice treat once in awhile, especially when we score some fresh organic zucchini.

Be sure to drain off as much moisture as you can from the zucchini. You can always add extra moisture with almond milk, but you don’t want the batter to be too runny.

This bread makes a nice dessert, but you can also eat it for breakfast with a little fruit or vegan yogurt.

If you make this recipe, please let us know your thoughts in the comments below. And please share with your friends to help spread the word about healthy plant-based eating.
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Vegan Beet Brownies

Vegan Beet Brownies PinWe used to buy Vegan Beet Brownies far more than we should have at Beet Box Bakery & Cafe, a vegan bakery that used to be walking distance from us when we lived in Uptown. If you’re in Denver, you have to try this place. They have amazing bread, sandwiches and desserts.

One day, instead of walking to Beet Box, Amelia decided to make some Vegan Beet Brownies from scratch and boy were they delicious. These brownies are so moist and chocolatey that you might have to put them behind lock and key or they won’t last a day!

Beet puree makes a great binder so it’s a good egg replacer in baked desserts. It’s also naturally sweet, so combined with the maple syrup in this recipe, you get a very rich brownie.

If you don’t have a non-stick baking pan,  you may want to use a little cooking spray or oil to grease the pan. Just spray a tiny amount down the middle and use your fingers to spread it over the bottom and sides. Or, put a tiny amount on a paper towel as shown in the video and use it to lightly coat the baking dish.

Vegan Beet Brownies Cooking Video

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If you make this recipe, please let us know your thoughts in the comments below. And please share with your friends to help spread the word about healthy plant-based eating.
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Lemony Spring Peas and Zucchini

Lemony Spring Peas and Zucchini PinThis Lemony Spring Peas and Zucchini recipe is a fresh and delicious Amelia special. She concocted this recipe from all of our favorite ingredients: zucchini, garbanzo beans, peas, onion and mushrooms. Adding the Lemon Sauce recipe adapted from the Minimalist Baker makes it all lemony and flavorful.

We tried to spiralize our zucchini, but the spiralizer we bought doesn’t work very well. It works ok for slicing, but the spiralizing blade did a better job of cutting my thumb than the zucchini. As long as the zucchini is thinly sliced, it works just as well.

If you’re using frozen peas, be sure to thaw them first or they won’t cook at the same rate as everything else.

You can substitute spaghetti squash or quinoa for the brown rice. You can also serve it without the rice and pair it with some Balsamic Marinated Baked TofuHealthy Butternut Squash or BBQ Tempeh.

If you make this recipe, please let us know your thoughts in the comments below. And please share with your friends to help spread the word about healthy plant-based eating.
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Vegan Summer Peach Cobbler

Vegan Summer Peach Cobbler PinThis amazingly delicious Vegan Summer Peach Cobbler recipe comes to us from Kristie Middleton, Senior Director of Food Policy for the Humane Society of the United States. She’s also the author of the widely popular book, “MeatLess: Transform the Way You Eat and Live – One Meal at a Time.”

Amelia and I had the pleasure of meeting Kristie at a Humane League Gala here in Denver, and also at her book signing at the Tattered Cover. Her mission in life and with the Humane Society is to help people transition to a “meatless” diet.

With tons of recipes like this Vegan Summer Peach Cobbler in her book, she’s doing a great job of showing people how to eat a more humane diet without sacrificing any of the flavor they’re used to with more traditional, less humane ingredients.

 Follow Kristie on Facebook!

If you’re concerned about your oil and salt intake, you can reduce the vegan butter by half and eliminate the salt. We made it both ways and it was delicious both ways.

Note: This is not a health food recipe. It’s meant to be a rare, special occasion treat. If you’re trying to lose weight or lower your cholesterol, just eat the peaches and skip the cobbler.


MeatLess by Kristie Middleton

Kristie-Middleton-Meatless_cover_lo A great resource to have in every transitioning vegan kitchen!

This book is loaded with concrete rationale for reducing or eliminating meat from your diet, as well as showing you how to make the transition easier. Kristie provides substitutes for common animal ingredients and dozens of plant-based recipes that will tease the tastebuds of any standard American food eater.

You don't have to sacrifice flavor for compassion. You can have both!


Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding

Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding PinThis Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding is a delicious dessert or snack to satisfy your chocolate cravings. It’s also a good source of Omega 3’s from the chia seeds.

Most pudding has gelatin in it, which isn’t vegan. You can substitute gelatin with guar gum, but this recipe doesn’t need it. The chia seeds absorb the almond milk and form a gelatinous texture. It needs to sit for a least 3 hours for the absorption to happen so plan accordingly.

You can top it with some fresh raspberries or a dollop of vegan whipped cream, or just eat it plain like I do.

If you make this recipe, please let us know your thoughts in the comments below. And please share with your friends to help spread the word about healthy plant-based eating.

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Vegan Chia Seed Pancakes

Vegan Chia Seed PancakesThese Vegan Chia Seed Pancakes are both filling and delicious. The chia seeds give them extra volume, fiber and protein to keep you going all morning.

Chia seeds are a great source of protein, fiber, omega-3 fatty acids and calcium. Numerous studies show that chia seeds help with skin conditions, aging, digestive health, heart health, treatment of diabetes, stronger bones, muscle building, weight loss, cancer prevention and treatment, and dental health. These benefits surely put chia seeds in the super food category.

Because they expand in liquid, chia seeds make you feel fuller and therefore eat less. That’s why they help with weight loss. When prepared in meals like these pancakes, they’re hardly noticeable, but you still get their powerful nutrient punch.

We like to cook our pancakes on an electric griddle. You can cook more of them at once and they cook more evenly than cooking them on the stove.

These Vegan Chia Seed Pancakes are oil free and soy free, but you can probably make them gluten free by swapping out the all-purpose flour with a gluten free variety. If you try that, let us know how it goes in the comments.

If you make this recipe, please let us know your thoughts in the comments below. And please share with your friends to help spread the word about healthy plant-based eating.

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Vegan Mac and Cheese

Vegan Mac and CheeseWe’ve tried several Vegan Mac and Cheese recipes before finding this one. It’s absolutely delicious, but it doesn’t taste quite like non-vegan mac n cheese.

It’s just as creamy and very flavorful, but it lacks the “cheesiness” of regular mac n cheese so adjust your expectations accordingly. If you judge it on its own merits, you may like it better.

We used gluten free Ancient Harvest Quinoa Organic Elbow Pasta and cornstarch, which also makes this a Gluten Free Mac and Cheese recipe.

We used vegetable broth to sauté the garlic instead of olive oil, so the only oil is 1 tsp drizzled over the roasted garlic. You may be able to use vegetable broth for that, too. That would make this recipe a Vegan Gluten Free, Oil Free & Soy Free Mac and Cheese!

It’s delicious! Prepare yourself for yumminess!

If you make this recipe, please let us know your thoughts in the comments below. And please share with your friends to help spread the word about healthy plant-based eating.

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