Butternut Squash and Cannellini Beans

Butternut squash with cannellini beans

Inspired by a dish I had at a local restaurant, I made this awesome side dish with less than five ingredients! Butternut squash is such a versatile squash, lending itself to be sweet or savory with an ample dose of fiber and Vitamin B6.  Paired with Cannellini beans for even more dietary fiber and protein, you have a great low calorie combination. Topped with roasted almonds this is a very easy and nutritious side dish.

Feed the wellness in you!

Butternut Squash and Cannellini Beans

Ingredients

  • 1 lb butternut squash, cubed
  • 1 can of cannellini beans
  • 1/2 cup bell peppers (red, yellow, orange)
  • 1/2 cup unsalted almonds
  • 1/2 tbl olive oil
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbl dried parsley
  • ground pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Crush the almonds and place on cookie sheet lined with parchment paper in the oven at 200 degrees.
  2. Sautee the bell peppers in the olive oil until softened.
  3. Add the butternut squash and sautee for 15 minutes or until cooked yet firm.
  4. Add the cannellini beans and mix well for 5 minutes
  5. Add the balsamic vinegar.
  6. Add pepper to taste.
  7. Sprinkle the parsley on top.
  8. Remove the almonds from the oven (at this point they would have been in the oven for 25-30 minutes) and sprinkle on top of the butternut squash and balsamic vinegar.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/butternut-squash-and-cannellini-beans/

Quick and Easy Superfood Salad

superfood kale salad

There are many ingredients to build a superfood salad and most use the base of Kale. I like to make salads that last over several days, so I use items that won’t cause it to get soggy after a day or two of storage. You can always add avocado, beets, cucumbers, tomatoes, quinoa and your protein of choice to this base superfood salad when ready to serve. Enjoy!

Feed the wellness in you!

Quick and Easy Superfood Salad

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Yield: 6-8

Ingredients

  • 4 cups of chopped kale
  • 1 can garbanzo beans
  • 1 can white shoepeg corn
  • 6 oz blueberries
  • 1.5 cups shredded carrots
  • 1.5 cups shredded red cabbage
  • 1 cup dried fruit (cranberries, golden raisins, etc.)
  • 6 oz balsamic vinegar

Instructions

  1. Discard the ribs from the kale and tear leaves into bite-sized pieces.
  2. Mix all ingredients in a large bowl with the kale.
  3. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours before serving.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/quick-and-easy-superfood-salad/

Favorite Packaged Sauces Part 1

Got your veggies? Got your protein? Are you about to cook with the same seasonings you added last week? Here are just two of my favorite packaged sauces you can find at your local grocery store.

 Favorite Sauces Part 1

I love these two sauces by Saffron Road.  I just lightly stir fry my vegetables (onions, green peppers, red peppers, broccoli, snap peas, and asparagus),  and add the sauce.  I find the Lemongrass sauce to be a little lighter on flavor and not as much sauce in proportion to the vegetables as the Tikka Masala, so I add a little vegetable stock, Thai basil and Thai Keffir Lime Leaves to give it a bit more flavor and depth.  The Tikka Masala sauce is fantastic as is and requires no additional seasonings.  Enjoy!

Lemongrass Basil Simmer Sauce with Vegetables

 Lemongrass Veggies and Tofu

Served with Roasted Tofu

Lemongrass Veggies and Tofu 2

Tikka Masala Sauce with Veggies

Tikka Masala Veggies

Tikka Masala Sauce Veggies with Lentil Brown Rice and Tofu

Tikka Masala Veggies with Tofu

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Quick and Easy Chickpea Salad

Quick and Easy Chickpea salad

As Spring weather starts to grace us before it officially starts, it makes you think about lighter fare recipes and naturally salads come to mind. You can’t go wrong with an easy salad that can be paired with the protein of your choice. This is nothing fancy but it packs in nutrients and flavor.  Protein, folate, fiber, and iron in a tasty simple salad – what’s not to love?

Feed the wellness in you!

Quick and Easy Chickpea Salad

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Yield: 6

Ingredients

  • 2 cans chickpeas
  • 1 cup chopped red cabbage
  • 1 cup quartered cherry tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta
  • 1/2 cup chopped red onion
  • 1 chopped English cucumber
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground pepper

Instructions

  1. Rinse and drain chickpeas.
  2. In a bowl, combine chickpeas with all the ingredients and mix well.
  3. Best made in advance!
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/quick-and-easy-chickpea-salad/

 

Quinoa and Tofu Mediterranean Bake

Quinoa and Tofu bake 4

 As I’ve stated in the past, I’m a fan of a dish that can go a long way but more importantly, never get tired of. I hadn’t made a quinoa dish in a while, so that immediately came to mind when considering a hearty meal that would give me a break from cooking every meal from scratch for a few days. This dish is a blend of simple nutritious ingredients and compliments all sources of protein. It is provides great levels of vitamins A and C, and Iron. What makes this ‘Mediterranean’, in my mind, is the addition of olives and feta. Also topped with Campari Tomatoes, it has the essence of the popular tomato used in many Italian dishes.

Most of the ingredients are cooked then blended in one pot before layering in a deep dish.

Quinoa and tofu bake 1

The quinoa mix (quinoa, spinach, roasted tomatoes, peppers, olives, feta) minus the tofu is the first layer, then top with roasted tofu.

Add another layer of the quinoa mix and repeat.  The final layer of quinoa is topped with sliced Campari tomatoes and feta.

Quinoa and Tofu bake 2

Quinoa and Tofu bake 3

Just delicious!

Feed the wellness in you!

Quinoa and Tofu Mediterranean Bake

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 8

Serving Size: 1

Calories per serving: 240

Fat per serving: 11.9

Saturated fat per serving: 3

Carbs per serving: 21.6

Protein per serving: 13.8

Fiber per serving: 3.3

Sugar per serving: 2.8

Sodium per serving: 644.3

Ingredients

  • 1 c Quinoa (3 cups cooked)
  • 2 pkgs Extra Firm Tofu (32 oz)
  • 5 oz package of Baby Spinach
  • 1 - 15.5 oz can Diced Tomatoes with Basil and Garlic
  • 3/4 cup Kalamata Olives, chopped
  • 1 cup chopped mixed bell peppers
  • 1 cup Feta cheese crumbles
  • 3 cups Vegetable stock
  • 3 Campari tomatoes

Instructions

  1. Sautee the mixed bell peppers, set aside.
  2. Cook 1 c of Quinoa in 3 cups vegetable stock
  3. After the Quinoa is cooked, while hot add the baby spinach, diced tomatoes, olives, mixed bell peppers and 3/4 cups of feta cheese. Mix well.
  4. Transfer to a deep 9x13 dish.
  5. Top with sliced Campari Tomatoes and the remaining feta cheese.
  6. Bake for 30 minutes.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/quinoa-and-tofu-mediterranean-bake/

Pumpkin Pilaf

Pumpkin Pilaf

Are you tired of plain brown rice and eating it just because it’s supposed to be better for you? With just a few additional ingredients you can be more creative and get more nutrients with that once plain brown rice. calabazaThis dish doesn’t have the pureed pumpkin we see prominently displayed in the grocery aisles right now.  What is used is the Caribbean Calabaza pumpkin or ‘West Indian Pumpkin’.  It is very popular in the Caribbean and Central and South America.  The seeds of the pumpkin, known as pepitas, are eaten as a snack when roasted and you will often find them added to Mexican cuisine.

I use this pumpkin quite often, especially in soups.  However, this is a great addition to meals on its own and I love it mixed in my rice as I had it growing up.  For added protein I include chickpeas and with minimal seasonings I have a great side dish.  I’ve had this with other side vegetables and even with my vegetarian chili.  The Calabaza pumpkin may not be easy to find but a great substitute is butternut squash.  You could never go wrong with that!

 Feed the wellness in you!

 

Pumpkin Pilaf

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

The Calabaza is usually cut in to large pieces but you will have to dice it into much smaller pieces. It has a tough skin so be careful and have a sharpened knife ready.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup diced Calabaza pumpkin (or butternut squash)
  • 1 cup brown rice
  • 3/4 cup chickpeas
  • 1 tbl tomato paste
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Place diced pumpkin in a medium pot with one cup of vegetable broth. Bring to a boil for ten minutes.
  2. Add the brown rice and chickpeas to the pumpkin along with 1.5 cups of vegetable broth.
  3. Mix in 1 tbl of tomato paste.
  4. Cook according to the brown rice directions (approx. 20 minutes)
  5. Add salt and pepper to taste and serve.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/pumpkin-pilaf/

Polenta with Spinach and Butternut Squash

 

Polenta with spinach and butternut squash

With just a handful of ingredients this dish can be served! I was inspired by a polenta frozen meal I saw in Trader Joe’s. I didn’t buy it, but it triggered my thoughts about cooking polenta.  I hadn’t cooked it in a while and it quickly became my side dish this week at dinner.

Polenta is a Northern Italy staple and is so versatile.  It can be served for breakfast, lunch or dinner and can be prepared boiled, fried, baked, or grilled. In addition, it can be served alongside just about any protein!  Use a store bought version and you can have a quick side dish with fair amounts of Vitamins C and A that is low in calories and fat.

The only additional ingredients to the main ones I used to make this was light half and half, a dash of salt and pepper to taste, oregano, and onion powder.  Polenta is ground corn so it has a natural mild sweet flavor to it so you don’t want to overpower that.  I wanted color and not too much texture so I went with spinach which would wilt nicely in the polenta.  What you’ll end up with is a wonderful creamy polenta with additional nutrients from the spinach.  The butternut squash is a delightful, tasty bonus.

Feed the wellness in you!

 

Polenta with Spinach and Butternut Squash

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes

Serving Size: 4

Ingredients

  • 1-16 oz package of cooked polenta
  • 1- 5 oz package of baby spinach
  • 1 cup of cubed butternut squash
  • 1 cup of light half and half
  • 1 tbl oregano
  • 1 tbl onion powder
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Cooking Spray
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Instructions

  1. Sautee the baby spinach in a tbl of olive oil until slightly wilted. Set aside.
  2. Cook the butternut squash until cooked but slightly firm. Should not be boiled for longer than 10 minutes.
  3. In a large pan, spray with cooking spray and turn heat to low.
  4. Place your cooked polenta in the pan and mash until a softened consistency.
  5. Add the half and half and stir in the oregano and onion powder.
  6. Fold in your spinach and add the butternut squash last with a stir or two. Again the butternut squash should be firm and not soft to blend in with the polenta.
  7. Add salt and pepper to taste.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/polenta-with-spinach-and-butternut-squash/

Sweet and Spicy Shaved Brussels Sprouts

sweet and spicy brussels sprouts

In my quick dash in and out of Trader Joe’s over the weekend, I picked up a 10 ounce bag of Shaved Brussels Sprouts. I’m a big fan of veggies that are already chopped and washed for me. I’ll admit I often wash them AGAIN but when in a hurry I just keep it moving.  I usually prepare whole Brussels Sprouts but use shaved in my salad mix. I thought I would sauté the shaved sprouts some way but wasn’t sure how.

When I arrived home I saw the simple recipe on the back of the package and the main ingredient for flavor was balsamic vinegar which I always use. I really didn’t have anything crazy imaginative in mind beyond what they described, I needed simple and fast.  Truth be told, I needed my dinner done before the US Open Men’s Final started at 4 pm.  Little did I know there would be a 3 hour rain delay!

sweet and spicy brussels sprouts 2.jpgI ended up using a dash of salt, onion powder, garlic powder, balsamic vinegar and the addition of Trader Joe’s sweet chili sauce. It’s a great condiment, and I use it on veggie hotdogs, hamburgers, vegetables and have also used it as a substitute for duck sauce.

So if you’re looking for a quick and easy side dish that is also low in calories, and very high in Vitamins C and K, give this a try.  This recipe also works well with green beans. Stop in your local  Trader Joe’s if you want no chopping and washing, pick up the few ingredients needed and this will be done in less than 15 minutes!

Sweet and Spicy Shaved Brussels Sprouts

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 10 minutes

Yield: 4

Ingredients

  • 1 pkg of 10 oz shaved Brussels Sprouts (I use the Trader Joe's brand and they always have it)
  • 2 tbl extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbl garlic powder
  • 1 tbl onion powder
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/8 cup sweet chili sauce

Instructions

  1. Sautee the Brussels sprouts in olive oil on a medium heat for 2 minutes until it starts to wilt.
  2. Add garlic powder, onion powder and balsamic vinegar and stir for another 3 minutes.
  3. Turn to low heat for 5 minutes then add the sweet chili sauce.
  4. Remove from heat and let sit for 5 minutes before serving.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/sweet-and-spicy-shaved-brussels-sprouts/

Quinoa Tabbouleh

 

Quinoa Tabboulleh

I got an email from my children’s school advising where to find their school supply list online along with other back to school information.  As much as I tried to deny it, the summer break is coming to an end. How is this possible? Where did the time go? I still have summer heavy on my mind. What’s great about DC is that it can reach the 80 degree mark in October and some pools are still open. One local pool that I go to has a fabulous brunch with several vegetarian options. One of the options is usually a traditional tabbouleh with bulgur but this past weekend they did it with quinoa. I liked the substitute.  Ironically they lessened the parsley which I don’t know if that technically makes it an entirely different dish because how can tabbouleh not have parsley?  With many more weeks of summer and the desire to eat nice cool salads,  I thought I should make tabbouleh and post a recipe.

There’s so many things that are great about tabbouleh.  I love the smell of fresh parsley and the lovely taste of the lemon and mint combined.  I was excited about trying it with quinoa.  Both bulgur and quinoa are great grains but quinoa has 50% more protein which I always need to seek extra of on a vegetarian diet.  Another thing I like about this dish is that it is easy to prepare.  Besides cooking the quinoa, everything else just gets chopped and when the quinoa is cooled just put all the ingredients together and mix well.  That’s it!

Traditional tabbouleh has way more parsley than it does grain.  Parsley is an amazing herb with almost every vitamin, lots of minerals and fiber.  Keep tabbouleh in mind at the salad bar  as an add-on ingredient to your salad.  It’s one of those items that adds great texture and flavor to salad, eliminating the need for dressing.

I hope you enjoy my take on tabbouleh.  I kept the spices light yet interesting, and used a higher ratio of lemon juice to olive oil.

Feed the wellness in you!

 

Quinoa Tabbouleh

Prep Time: 4 hours, 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 4 hours, 30 minutes

It is recommended to let the tabbouleh sit for 4 hours before serving hence the long total preparation time.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed well
  • 1 tsp Sea Salt
  • 1/2 c fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbl garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cucumber (if you you can find one, use a whole Persian cucumber), chopped
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 bunch chopped italian parsley (1.5 cups) washed and dried thoroughly
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh mint washed and dried thoroughly
  • 2 chopped scallions washed and dried thoroughly
  • 1/4 tsp Allspice
  • 1/4 tsp Powdered Ginger
  • 1/4 tsp Ground Cloves

Instructions

  1. Cook a cup of quinoa according to the package directions. Let cool then put in a large bowl.
  2. Add all remaining ingredients and mix well.
  3. Let sit for 4 -6 hours or ideally overnight before serving.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/quinoa-tabbouleh/

 

Curried Cabbage and Carrots

Curry Cabbage and Carrots

Several weeks ago I ordered take out from an Indian restaurant and thought that we would have enough left over the next evening for dinner. Have you ever looked at the left overs the next day and wondered what you were thinking the night before?  I was having one of those moments, scrambling to figure out what to prepare to accompany the left overs and pulled out some cabbage from the refrigerator. I had to make it in a way that was in sync with the other Indian food so of course I thought of a curry instead of a lightly seasoned dish.

I really love cabbage.  As a kid I despised it – it was prepared by boiling it, it had an odd smell, and the final result was this unappetizing lump of a mushy substance on my plate.  As an adult I love the variety of cabbages and like most green vegetables it’s a great source of vitamins, minerals and fiber.  I enjoy it raw as well as cooked but only slightly – you don’t have to cook cabbage for more than 5-10 minutes to get it the right texture.  If you don’t already do this, try tossing shredded cabbage in your salad greens to get an extra boost of vitamins and crunch.  It soaks up any dressing you would use very nicely.

Back to the recipe…Since my first hurried attempt weeks ago, I’ve made this dish a few times now and each time I added ingredients until I got it ‘right’.  The first time I was rushing and used what I had on hand which was cabbage with curry, turmeric, cumin, garlic, a dash of cayenne and lemon juice.  I added ingredients the second time to include ginger, onions, and garam masala.  As they say, the third time is a charm because on the third attempt it truly became THE curry dish I would want to share with everyone.  The addition of the sweet carrots with the slightly crunchy cabbage was a great union; there are a lot of spices but they all complement each other yet you can taste them on their own; the black sesame seeds add a nice flavor and color balance; and the lemon juice adds just the right acidity and zest.

I’m not too happy with the picture I have alongside this recipe – I tried taking it a few times and the yellow of the curry and turmeric would not convey as I liked in most of the pictures so this was the best I could do.   I hope my description at least conveys that you should try it and that you will enjoy it!

Feed the wellness in you!

Curried Cabbage and Carrots

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Serving Size: 4

Have all of your ingredients lined up and ready because you have to move fast in order to prevent the dry ingredients from sticking in the pan.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 large head of cabbage, shredded
  • 2 large carrots, chopped
  • 1/4 c red onions
  • 1 tbl chopped garlic
  • 1 tsp minced ginger
  • 3 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 2 tbl curry
  • 1 tbl turmeric
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper or cayenne
  • 1 tbl black sesame seeds
  • 1/4 c lemon juice
  • Cilantro (optional)

Instructions

  1. Saute the carrots, red onions and garlic for 10 minutes on medium heat with 2 tbl of olive oil.
  2. Add your ginger, curry, turmeric, cumin, garam masala, and black sesame seeds with another tablespoon of olive oil. Mix quickly and add your shredded cabbage.
  3. Pour the lemon juice on top and stir well so the dry ingredients are integrated into the vegetables.
  4. Add your pepper and continue to mix. Turn to low heat and let cook for 5 minutes.
  5. Turn off the heat, stir and let sit for about 10 minutes before serving.
  6. Sprinkle cilantro on top and serve.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/curried-cabbage-and-carrots/