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Showing posts from February, 2018

Peanut Butter Chia Energy Bites

These energy bites are perfect midday pick me ups, and great for a post workout protein boost! This recipe makes about 12 bite-sized snacks, each one providing approximately 5g of protein!




No baking required, these are great snacks to prepare on a Sunday night before starting a work week. Just keep the energy bites in the fridge in an air tight container and they will stay fresh and ready to eat until the end of the week. 
Here is how I make my Peanut Butter Chia Energy Bites:




Ingredients: 6 Tbsp* Chia Seeds 3 Tbsp Ground Flax  3 Tbsp Unsalted Roasted Peanuts 3 Tbsp Peanut Butter 3 Tbsp Maple Syrup 

Instructions
Mix together 3 Tbsp* Chia Seeds with the flax, peanuts, maple syrup and peanut butter. 
Mix together until all the ingredients are well combined. 
Roll into 1/2” - 1” Balls 
Roll the balls in the remaining chia seeds until coated. 
Store in an air tight container and Refrigerate.
Enjoy!




Sneaky Veggie Muffins - Toddler Muffins

These toddler muffins taste just like chocolate chip banana muffins, except they are loaded with vegetables! I love the pink hue the batter makes, and I love eating them even more. 
Here is my recipe for Sneaky Veggie Muffins:



Ingredients: 1 Small Beet (Peeled) 1 Carrot 1 Cup Spinach 2 Ripe Bananas 1/4 Cup Vegetable Oil 2 Cups Whole Wheat Flour 1 1/2 tsp Baking Powder 3/4 Cup Chocolate Chips
Instructions:
Preheat oven to 350'
In a blender or food processor, blend together the beet, carrot, spinach, bananas and oil. 
Pour into a large bowl then mix in the flour and baking powder until combined. 
Stir in the chocolate chips.
Scoop into non-stick or parchment lined mini-muffin tins, and bake at 350' for 20 minutes.
Let cool, and enjoy!



Strawberry Chips

The other day I was testing out a recipe for fruit leather. It did not turn out as planned... at all. I did however stumble across a great creation: Strawberry Chips!  In the oven, my fruit leather hardened to a crisp, but kept all its strawberry goodness. When I removed it from the oven, the fruit snapped into pieces and voila! I was left with Strawberry Chips. These are perfect for dessert toppings or just on their own as a sweet treat. 



Strawberry Chips take less than 5 minutes to prepare, and several hours in the oven, so if you want them for a specific occasion, you can just make them ahead of time and store them in an airtight container. 
Here is my recipe for Strawberry Chips:



Ingredients: 2 Cups Strawberries 1 Tbsp Maple Syrup
Instructions:
In a blender or food processor, purée the strawberries and maple syrup together until smooth. 
Spread over a silicone or parchment lined baking tray. 



Bake at 170’ for 3-4 hours or until crisp in the middle. 
You will be able to see the colour darken…

Cranberry Lemon Blender Muffins

These muffins are delicious, and taste just like the cranberry lemon muffins I've had at the local coffee shop. The blender is great for this recipe, because it will shrink down all the dried cranberry bits so you get all of the flavour in every bite. If you don't use a blender, that's okay too, your muffins will just have bigger cranberry pieces. 



Here is my recipe for Vegan Cranberry Lemon Muffins:
Ingredients:
2 Tbsp Ground Flax 6 Tbsp Water 1/4 Cup Vegetable Oil 1/4 Cup Sugar 1/4 Cup Brown Sugar 1 tsp Lemon Extract 1 Tbsp Lemon Zest 1/2 Cup Cashew Milk
1 1/2 Cups Whole Wheat Flour 1 tsp Baking Soda 1 tsp Baking Powder 3/4 Cup Dried Sweetened Cranberries
Instructions:
Preheat Oven to 350'
Mix together ground flax and water. Let sit for 5 minutes. 
Add flax mixture, vegetable oil, sugars, lemon extract and lemon zest, into a blender. Blend until combined. 
Add Cashew Milk, Flour, Baking Soda, Baking Powder, and Cranberries, into the blender, and blend until combined. 

Sesame Lime Sauce

This sesame lime sauce is perfect over noodles with veggies. I served it here with my coconut crusted tofu, and it was delicious!




Here is my recipe for Sesame Lime Sauce:

Ingredients:

1 tsp Sesame Oil 4 Tbsp Soy Sauce 3 Tbsp Lime Juice 3 Tbsp Brown Sugar 1/2 Cup Water 1 Tbsp Corn Starch  1/2 Cup Cold Water 3 Tbsp Toasted Sesame Seeds
Instructions:
In a small sauce pan over medium heat, stir together the sesame oil, soy sauce, lime juice, brown sugar, and 1/2 Cup water. 
Continue stirring until sugar is dissolved. 
In a small bowl, mix together corn starch and 1/2 Cup Cold Water until milky.
Pour corn starch water into the sauce, and stir. 
Bring to a boil. 
Reduce heat to a simmer.
Add toasted sesame seeds, and cook for 3 minutes while stirring. 
Remove from heat, and enjoy over the dish of your choice! This goes great on rice or noodles. 

Cranberry Oat Bars

Granola bars are one easy snack, that I'm am fairly certain every child has had in their lunch pack at school, at some point in their life. With nut allergies on the rise, many schools are now 'nut-free' zones, which limits the store bought granola bar options. Add in a vegan diet, and your granola bar options are pretty slim, and often more expensive than all the other 'regular' granola bars. Have no fear: nut-free, vegan granola bars are so easy to make!



Here is my recipe for school friendly, toddler approved, Cranberry Granola Bars:



Ingredients:
1 Cup Dried Cranberries 2 Cups* Oats 2 Tbsp Chia Seeds 2 Tbsp Maple Syrup
Instructions:
In a blender or food processor, add cranberries, chia seeds, maple syrup, and 1 Cup* of Oats. 
Blend until all of the ingredients are thoroughly combined. 
Remove from blender. 
Mix 1 Cup of oats into the mixture, and press into a parchment lined 8" x 8" pan. 
Refrigerate for 1 Hour.
Remove from pan, and cut into bars. 
Wrap …

Easy Split Chickpea and Leek Soup

This soup is so easy to make, perfect for a day when your hands are full. Minimal time in the kitchen is required and it tastes delicious! I relied on this soup a handful of times while my husband was away for work last fall. I tossed all the ingredients in a pot in the morning, and voila - we had lunch and dinner ready to go! 
Here is my recipe for easy Split Chickpea and Leek Soup:



Ingredients: 1 Cup Dried Split Chickpeas 1 Leek 6-8 Cups Vegetable Stock Salt and Pepper to taste
Instructions:
Soak chickpeas in 3 Cups of Water overnight.
Finely dice the leek. 
Drain and rinse the Chickpeas.
Add leeks, chickpeas and vegetable stock into a large soup pot, and bring to a boil. 
Reduce to a simmer, and cook for 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally. 
Season with Salt and Pepper, and Enjoy!

Banana Blender Muffins

I heard of blender muffins before, and liked the concept: not dirtying extra dishes and simplifying the method of mixing ingredients. That being said, I never made blender muffins before, until recently. I was making these banana muffins, and half way through mashing the bananas, I thought it would be so much easier to do this in the blender... So I did. 
These Banana Muffins are so good, and taste like bite-sized loaves of banana bread. Add chocolate chips for an extra treat, and enjoy!



Here is my recipe for Vegan Banana Blender Muffins:
Ingredients:
3 Ripe Bananas 1/4 Cup Vegetable Oil 1/4 Cup Sugar 1/4 Cup Brown Sugar 1 1/2 Cups Whole Wheat Flour 1 tsp Baking Soda 1 tsp Baking Powder 1/2 Cup Chocolate Chips (Optional)

Instructions:
Preheat Oven to 350'
Add the Bananas, Oil, and sugars into a blender, and blend until the banana is smooth. 
Add Flour, Baking Soda and Baking Powder, and blend just until all of the ingredients are combined. 
Stir in Chocolate Chips if desired. 
Pour …

Garlic Pizza Bread Bites

These garlicy pizza bread bites are perfect appetizers for game night, and because they are great for dipping, toddlers will love them too (They'd never even know they were made with Whole Wheat)! This will make about 80 bite sized pieces, perfect for make-ahead snacks that you can freeze and reheat to enjoy later!



Ingredients: Dough: 1 Packet Instant Quick-Rise Yeast 1 tsp Sugar 1 Cup Warm Water 2 1/2 Cups Whole Wheat Flour 1 tsp Salt 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
Seasoning: 1 Tbsp Olive Oil 1 1/2 tsp Garlic Powder 1/2 tsp Salt 1/2 tsp Basil
Instructions:
Preheat oven to 400' 
In a large bowl, dissolve the yeast and sugar in the warm water. 
Add flour, salt and olive oil, and stir until a dough is formed. Knead the dough about 10 times until it is no longer sticky.
Break the dough into 10 - 12 equal pieces. 
Roll each piece of dough into a long 'snake' about half an inch thick.
Cut the snakes into equal bite sized pieces.
Prepare the Seasoning, by mixing the olive oil, garlic powder, …

Mushroom Quinoa Soup

I am sure I have said it before: I love soup. I think the soup making gene runs in the family, because anybody who has eaten at my parents house knows that my mom makes amazing soup, and I love how my Grandma's soup just warms your soul. I have some big soup-shoes to fill, and nothing will replace Mom's home cooking, but this Mushroom Quinoa Soup was pretty darn tasty if I may say so myself. My toddlers even sat down quietly and both finished their bowls for lunch! Here is the recipe for my Mushroom Quinoa Soup:



Ingredients: 1 Tbsp Olive Oil 3 Garlic Cloves - Finely Diced 1 Onion - Diced 2 Cups Diced Mushrooms 1 Cup Quinoa 8 Cups Vegetable Stock 1/2 tsp Basil 1/2 tsp Oregano Salt and Pepper to taste
Instructions:
Heat up the olive oil in a large soup pot, over medium high heat. 
Sautee onions and garlic until the onions are transparent and just starting to turn golden on the edges (about 5 minutes).
Add mushrooms and stir. Add vegetable stock 1 tablespoon at a time to avoid the…

Mushroom Lentil Pot Pies

For Valentine's Day this year, I wanted to make something special for dinner. I had no idea what I was going to cook, but I knew I wanted it to be delicious, hardy, and something new. I started brainstorming, and decided that a Vegan friendly Pot Pie would be a perfect fit. Here is my recipe for Miniature Mushroom Lentil Pot Pies:
Ingredients:
1 Tbsp Olive Oil 1 Onion 1 1/2 Cups Sliced Mushrooms (I used Cremini Mushrooms) 1 Cup Dried Green Lentils  2 Cups Vegetable Broth 1 Tbsp Corn Starch 1/3 Cup Cold Water 2 Cups Frozen Mixed Vegetables (Peas, Carrots, Corn...) 8 Individual Sized Pie Shells

Instructions:
Soak Lentils in a bowl with 2 - 3 Cups of Water. **Let Soak for 3-6 Hours
Once lentils have soaked, heat up olive oil over medium heat in a large sauce pan.
Add onions to the sauce pan and sautee until the begin to turn transparent (approximately 3 minutes).
Add Mushrooms and cook for another 3 minutes while stirring frequently - Add a Tablespoon of Vegetable broth if the pan get…

Easy Vegan Pie Crust

This pie crust is perfect for making pot pies, or any other pies for that matter! It is vegan, whole wheat, and easy to make so even the most novice pie baker can make their own crust. This recipe makes 8 - 12 individual-sized pie crusts, but can be used to make a large pie as well (you will need to adjust the baking time accordingly). 



Here is my recipe for vegan pie crust:
Ingredients: 2 Cups Whole Wheat Flour 1/2 tsp Salt 3/4 Cup Vegan Margarine 1/4 Cup Cold Water
Instructions: In a large bowl, mix together the salt and flour.
Add the margarine and cut it in with a fork or your fingers, until the dough looks like its full of pea sized crumbs.
Slowly add the cold water while mixing it in. 
Knead the dough until it is smooth and not sticky. 
Break dough into 8 - 12 equal parts and place in muffin tins. 
Press the dough inside each muffin tin to form the crust. Make sure there are no holes, and press it all the way up the sides. 
Bake at 350’ for 15-20 minutes, or until the crust is no longer dough…

A House of Bats and Monkeys

I have been procrastinating writing about life, for no reason in particular. There has been so much going on around the house that I feel so busy, but when I sit down to write about it, I feel that I have done nothing worth sharing. I suppose that's just all a part of being a responsible adult: keeping busy, getting stuff done, and it's not always that glamorous. 
I have been going to a chiropractor lately to deal with my back pain, and while my back still hurts, I feel that it has helped a lot as well. My husband ordered us a Teeter back inverter as well, so for a couple minutes a day, we get to hang upside down like bats. That's pretty cool. It's surprisingly relaxing, and is supposed to help stretch us out from a long day dealing with the forces of gravity, it was also recommended by my chiropractor to help move my treatment along, so here's to hoping!
The girls keep me on my toes everyday: they make me laugh, smile, and question my sanity.


My little monkey…

Black Bean Sweet Potato Burritos with Cilantro Lime Sauce

These Black Bean Sweet Potato Burritos are so easy to make. To make this a simple weekday dinner, you could even prepare the filling the night before so all you have to do is wrap the burritos and throw them in the oven. Here is my recipe for Black Bean Sweet Potato Burritos, which I served with Cilantro Lime Sauce


Ingredients: 1 1/2 Cups Black Beans 1 Large Sweet Potato 1 Onion 1 Tbsp Olive Oil 3 Tbsp Lime Juice  Zest from 1 Lime Salt and Pepper to taste  8 Tortilla Wraps 
Instructions: Peel and chop Sweet Potatoes and add to a pot of water. Bring to a boil.
Boil sweet potatoes until tender when poked with a fork, then drain and mash the Sweet Potatoes with a potato masher. Set aside. 
Preheat Oven to 350' 
While the Sweet Potatoes are boiling, heat up the Olive Oil in a frying pan over medium high heat.
Once the pan is hot, add onions.
Sautee the onions until they are transparent and just about to turn golden. 
Add the lime juice, zest, and black beans to the onions. 
Toss until…

Easy Balsamic Spaghetti

This recipe for Easy Balsamic Spaghetti is perfect for a busy weekday dinner. Easy to prepare and quick to cook, this pasta dish is so tasty and you will have dinner on the table in no time! Here is the recipe for my Easy Balsamic Spaghetti:



Ingredients: 1 Package Spaghetti 1 Onion 4 Cloves Garlic 1 Tbsp Olive Oil 1 tsp Basil 1 tsp Oregano  3 Cups Spinach 1 1/2 Cups Sliced Grape Tomatoes 1/4 Cup Balsamic Dressing
Instructions:
Dice the onion, tomatoes, and finely dice the garlic. 
Boil Spaghetti noodles as per package.
While your pasta is cooking, sauté onions and garlic in the olive oil on medium high heat. 
After about 3 minutes, once the onions are transparent, add the tomatoes.
Continue cooking for a minute and then add the baby spinach and balsamic dressing to the pan. 
Reduce heat to a simmer. Sauce is ready once the spinach is just starting to wilt. 
Once cooked, drain the spaghetti and add it directly into the pan to toss with your sauce.
Enjoy!

Balsamic Dressing

A balsamic vinaigrette is a simple salad dressing that you can easily make at home and keep in the fridge. Dress your favourite salad, or try this recipe for Easy Balsamic Spaghetti.
Here’s my recipe for Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing. Just add all of these ingredients in a jar, and shake: 
1/2 Cup Olive Oil 1/3 Cup Balsamic Vinegar 2 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar 1/2 tsp Sugar 1/2 tsp Basil 1/2 tsp Oregano 1/8 tsp Salt 1/8 tsp Pepper

Coconut Baked Tofu

Coconut Crusted Tofu is hands-down, my favourite way to enjoy tofu. I used to be a ‘tofu-hater’ until I tried fried Coconut Tofu for the first time, and since then, I have played with a recipe until I created what is now my go-to favourite for Tofu night. Here is my recipe for Coconut Baked Tofu:



Ingredients:
1 Block of Tofu
Marinade: 3 Tbsp Soy Sauce 1 Tsp Chili Sauce 2 Tbsp Lime Juice 2 Tbsp Brown Sugar 1/4Cup Water 
Coating: 2 Tbsp Whole Wheat Flour 2 Tbsp Corn Starch 1 tsp Baking Powder 1/4 Cup Cold Water  1/2 Cup Shredded Coconut 1/2 Cup Breadcrumbs 
Instructions: Cut tofu into cubes or rectangles.
Press tofu between paper towels to squeeze out water. 
Mix the Soy Sauce, Chili Sauce, Lime Juice, Brown Sugar, and Water, in a shallow container.
Add tofu and ensure that each piece is sitting in the marinade. 
Let sit for 1-2 hours, flipping halfway to ensure both sides soak up flavour.

Preheat oven to 350’
In a small bowl, mix together Corn Starch, Flour, Baking Soda and Cold Water. 
In another bowl, mix t…

Sweet Chilli Sauce

This Sweet Chilli Sauce is the perfect balance of sweet and heat. Use it in marinades or as a dip on it’s own. So easy to make ahead in a batch and then store in the refrigerator. 
Here is my recipe for Sweet Chilli Sauce:



Ingredients:1 Tbsp Chilli Flakes1 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar1 Cup Water1/2 Cup Sugar1/2 tsp Garlic Powder 1 tsp Corn Starch1/4 Cup Cold Water

Instructions:
Mix Chilli Flakes, 1/2 Cup Water, Vinegar, Garlic Powder and Sugar in a small sauce pan, and bring just to a boil, stirring constantly.
Reduce to a simmer.
Mix 1/4 Cup Cold Water and the Corn Starch together in a small container. 
Add corn starch mixture to the sauce pan and stir.
Bring to a boil and cook until the sauce is no longer cloudy from the corn starch. 
Set aside to cool.
Pour into a sealable container and store in the refrigerator until ready to use. 




Homemade Vegan Pirogies

As you may have read in my previous post, I made some vegan homemade pirogies for dinner last night. They were a success and I’ll definitely be making them again. Here is my recipe to make pirogies from scratch: 
Ingredients: 3 Cups Flour 1/2 tsp Salt 3/4 Cup Boiling Water 1/2 Cup Cold Water
Instructions:
Sift flour and salt together in a large bowl.
Mix in boiling water until most of the flour is moistened. 
Let sit for a couple minutes until the flour has cooled off a bit. 
Gradually mix in the cold water.
Knead the dough until smooth. 
Roll out the dough until it is only a couple millimeters thick. *depending on your space, it may be easier to break the dough into smaller portions and roll them separately*
Using a drinking glass or cookie cutter, cut circles out of the dough. 



Add a heaping teaspoon of filling of your choice (I used garlic mashed sweet potatoes). 

Fold the dough in half around the filling and pinch the edges closed with your fingers.