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Posts tagged ‘dinner’

Are You Hungry? Veggie Tortellini

Trying to feed a family of 4 and having everyone being happy with what I fix is kind of difficult! Of course there is the challenge of fixing non-meat food that the meat eaters will like. I use to try and have a separate entree for them but now with the baby, I dont have time for all that!! So either the husband grills some kind of animal, they fix themselves a ham sandwich, or they eat what I eat. (They are thrilled when we visit back home because my mama and mother in law will spoil them with all kinds of meat dishes!)

One fool proof, non meat dinner Ive found everyone loves is tortellini! Its so yummy delish! If you can find it, I recommend getting the kind filled with spinach (hello, extra veggies!) instead of just cheese. Plus, the time it took me from dumping the pasta into the pot to serving it was about 20 mins. Score! Serve it with some kind of green veggie (broccoli or sweet peas) and maybe some garlic bread, if youre feeling froggy! And on cold days when youre in the mood for some extra warm comfort food, you can cook a pot of veggie soup and throw it in there for an extra hearty meal.

For this, I used the veggies I had on hand. So use what you have/like. The recipe is versatile. The beans give it a little extra protein in place of the meat.

Veggie Tortellini

Tortellini noms

Tortellini noms

  • 1 16-ounce package dried tortellini
  • 3 hand fulls of fresh baby spinach leaves, chopped
  • 4 large garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 1 can great northern beans, drained
  • 3 heaping tablespoons of jarred pesto, less or more to taste
  • basil and crushed red pepper flakes to sprinkle on top

Cook tortellini in large pot of boiling salted water, per the box instructions, being careful to not over cook. Drain tortellini, reserving some of the pasta water in the pot. Add canned tomatoes and canned beans. Cook on low until warm. Add chopped spinach, pesto, and herbs, along with salt and pepper to taste.  If more sauce is desired, add a little more pasta water.

If you have the ingredients you can add sauteed mushrooms, sun dried tomatoes, artichoke hearts, olives. Whatever you like. It makes great left overs for the next day but any longer then that, I think the pasta starts to break down and its not as yummy.

Are You Hungry? Lentil Bolognese

Woah! Its almost been a month since Ive made a post. Where has all that time gone?! I knew it had been awhile but not that long. This homeschooling business is kicking my butt. Im going 1000 miles a min during the day. Think being a stay at home mom is hard? …Try also being your child’s teacher. Im rambling, Ill blog more about that in another post. I made an oh.so.yummy Lentil Bolognese dinner last night. Ive been in a dinner funk, feeling lazy and not wanting to put forth effort to cook. I spent about 30 mins yesterday trying to come up with this week’s dinner menu, nothing really sounded good. Until I happened upon this one foodie blog, Maple Spice and all Vegan Things Nice. I pinned like 10 different delish looking recipies! I just happen to have almost all the ingredients for her Lentil Bolognese so that’s what I cooked.

Such a score because my Meat Eater Husband and Son loved it & my picky toddler ate a lot of it .. until she noticed the garlic bread, and then she only wanted bread. Womp womp. Lol. Its got a good amt of veggies in it! The lentils give it a meat-ish like of feel. And shhh don’t tell, but I used about half a package of mushrooms. The husband HATES mushrooms and usually wont eat them, but he has no idea that his yummy dinner was full of mushrooms! MuhHahaha!! (Unless of course, he reads this blog…) Now if you don’t like mushrooms either, don’t run away. The sauce is blended smooth in a food processor and you really cannot tell that there are mushrooms in it! Of course you can omit them if you want to be difficult 😛 but don’t! It feels great, feeding your family something that’s good tasting and good for them.

Heres the recipe: Vegan Veggie Lentil Bolognese

Vegan Veggie Lentil Bolognese

Vegan Veggie Lentil Bolognese

4 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped
1 bay leaf
1 carrot, peeled and diced
1 red pepper, seeded and finely chopped
1 small package mushrooms, washed and quartered
1 tablespoon soy sauce
Salt and pepper to taste
1 14.5 oz can chopped tomatoes
1 cup brown lentils, drained and rinsed
1 12 oz box whole wheat fettuccine noodles
Heat the oil over medium-high heat, add the onion, basil, oregano and bay leaf and cook till onions are transparent. Add the garlic, stir, then add the carrot, and red pepper, cook for a few minutes then add the mushrooms. When the mushrooms begin to wilt, stir in soy sauce and tomatoes, and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for about 30 minutes.
Cook pasta per box instructions. Reserve some pasta water and add to sauce if its too thick.
Mix sauce in with the pasta.

To serve, add a little cheeze or nutritional yeast sprinkled on top and some fresh basil. Maybe a side of steamed broccoli or a salad. Some garlic bread (Vegan garlic bread recipe!! You can use olive oil in place of the vegan butter). And youre good to go!!

Updated! Are You Hungry? Lazy Baked Enchilada

You know how “they” say that weight loss is 80% healthy eating and 20% exercise. Ive been trying to eat out less and cook at home. Dirty little secret time, we tent to eat out a lot. It get expensive and even though I try to order things that are as healthy as possible, I know its not really that healthy. Case in point, I had to go to Olive Garden the other day for a baby shower. How do you eat Olive Garden and vegan? Well the OG isn’t my most favorite restaurant, the only pasta dish they have that I can eat it spaghetti and *I* can make sketty far better then theirs! So I ordered veggie pizza without cheese. I logged my meal into MyFitnessPal app and was shocked to read that my ‘healthy’ dinner was 900-some calories! Say whaaaat?! And the sodium was really high too. :\ Womp. Womp.

A lot of my problem has to do with me being too lazy/tired/busy (whatever you want to call it) to prep and cook. By the time dinner rolls around, the hubby comes home from work starving (because he usually skips breakfast and lunch!), begging for food, I don’t feel like jumping right then to cook something, so we go out! I will plan and buy a weeks worth of meals and then go out twice-ish a week for dinner. Ack!

So no more out to eat! Last week (or maybe 2 weeks ago) I had a hankering for Mexican so I searched on Pinterest and found enchiladas! Yum! I was going to assemble, fill/roll the enchiladas, and then bake them but once I started I was like, aint no body got time for that! so instead I made a Lazy (Wo)man’s Vegan Enchilada Bake with a side of Cilantro Lime Brown Rice. I used the Steamfresh brand rice (that’s in the freezer section, it comes in a bag, and you microwave it for 5 mins, then DONE!) and added cilantro + lime to it. Oh so easy! And bonus, delish! Its packed full of veggies, the kid loved it and even the meat-eater hubby gave his complements!

***Updated to add..

Oh how could I forget! The baby loved her enchilada dinner so much that she scarfed it down and even licked her plate. And of course, being the good mama that I am, I took pictures! Lol. Here’s what Bethany thought of dinner!

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Now it’s time to get serious!

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Vegan Lazy Baked Enchilada!

Lazy Enchilada Bake

Lazy Enchilada Bake

1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can corn, drained
1 can tomatoes with zesty mild green chillies, drained
1 onion, diced
veggies of choice (I used 1 cooked sweet potato, 1 diced zucchini, and 1 diced squash)
salt and pepper to taste
favorite salsa (I LOVE Walmart’s Great Value brand White Corn & Black Bean Salsa)
3 whole wheat tortillas
1 package enchilada sauce (I used Frontera Green Chile Enchilada Sauce)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly oil a round baking dish. In a medium bowl combine all veggies, black beans, corn, tomatoes, onion, salt, and pepper. Layer baking dish: tortilla, veggie mixture, enchilada sauce, salsa. And repeat to make 3 layers. Drizzle the remaining enchilada sauce over the casserole. Cover and bake approx. 35 mins. Garnish with cilantro and serve with cilantro lime brown rice.

Tip: you can assemble this ahead of time and then pop it into the oven at dinner time.

Are You Hungry? Cauliflower Rice and Broccoli Salad

Don’t you hate it when you want to cook something so you go to find the recipe … but there is none that sounds quite right? That was the problem I had with these two recipes, Cauliflower Rice and Broccoli Salad. Ive made cauliflower rice before but it was not a hit! It turned out too wet, I must have put too much water in it. This time I tried to find a better recipe but I couldn’t find one. So heres mine! Its so ridic easy and you can use whichever veggies you have on hand.

Cauliflower Rice and Broccoli Salad

Cauliflower Rice
1 head of cauliflower, rinced
onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, diced
salt and pepper to taste
a splash of veggie broth
veggies of choice (I used bella mushrooms and frozen peas)
Pulse the cauliflower in food processor until rough chopped and rice shaped. Heat oil in pan over medium high heat. Saute onion and garlic for about 3 minutes, or until fragrant. Add desired veggies and cook 5 mins. Add cauliflower, stir well, then add veggie broth, sea salt and pepper. Saute for about 5 minutes until cauliflower is slightly tender. Do not over cook!

Broccoli Salad
3 heads fresh broccoli, chopped
1/2 red pepper, chopped
1/2 orange pepper, chopped
2 large carrots, chopped
1/2 red onion, finely chopped (optional, Im not a fan)
1 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup roasted pine nuts (or whatever nut you have)
All of the ingredients go in to a large mixing bowl, stir.

Dressing
2 cups of Vegenaise
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1tbsp garlic, pressed
red pepper flakes, sea salt, and ground pepper to taste
1tbsp honey
All of the ingredients go in to a separate mixing bowl, wisk together, and then pour over the Broccoli Salad.

Are You Hungry? Roasted Fall Vegetables with Lentils

The other night I made Roasted Fall Vegetables and Lentils with a Honey Dijon Mustard Vinaigrette … Get ready for the best veggie recipe ever! So good that the husband and child gobbled dinner down, all while praising me on the delish dish. Roasted veggies are so.good. because their sweet flavor comes out from. Onions, sweet potatoes, and carrots are my fav. The veggies are healthy so I felt no guilt for stuffing my face with them. 😀 Lentils are very nutritious and especially great for vegetarians/vegans because of their high fiber content and are a good source of protein and iron. So yeah, dinner was great! I also made mac n cheese (whole wheat noodles, of course) and bought an already-cooked roasted chicken for the husband and child (they had been pleading for some meat). For real, you’ve got to try this dish! Perfect fall comfort food. I think I liked it so much that Im going to make it for Thanksgiving dinner at my grandmother-in-law’s house. Nom-nom!

Roasted Fall Vegetables and Lentils with a Honey Dijon Mustard Vinaigrette

Roasted Fall Vegetables and Lentils with a Honey Dijon Mustard Vinaigrette

I used the recipe but made these changes:

I hate celery, so I omitted that. I didnt have any red onions so I had to sub for yellow onions. I also used half a green bell pepper because I already had one chopped up. And last, I used double the vinaigrette to make it extra saucy.

Are You Hungry? Weekly Meals

Hey-O! 🙂

Ive noticed that its been awhile since Ive posted any recipes. Well, you are in luck, because this blog is going to be full of recipes!! 😀 Im usually not one for planning my meals and end up going to the grocery store a few times a week. The nearest grocery store is just -ok-. Nothing fancy and it usually lacks some of the fresh veggies that I like to use, plus the organic section is practically non existent! (That doesnt make grocery shopping fun.) The same can be said for the other grocery stores in my town. Meh…. However, 45 mins away is a Whole Foods!!

Inside of Whole Foods

Inside of Whole Foods

Yessss. I love WF with their huge produce selections, fresh prepared foods, organic options, whole body section, and the bins. Oh the items in their bulk bins! WF gets me excited for healthy meal planning and hunting down those fresh ingredients. What I love most is that they have so many different food items, things Ive never even heard of before, it gets me excited to try new dishes. It makes me feel good, knowing that Im fixing healthy meals for my family. (No frozen pizza, no hamburger helper, no chicken nuggets, no prepackaged junk.) Oh and you might have the misconception that WF and similar grocery stores are too expensive, but you would be wrong. Its not too expensive for a veg! Calculate all the money you spend on meat… youre saving all that money and it can now be spent towards high quality, fresh, local, and organic produce.

So for this week, heres my meal list:

If you click on the titles you’ll get redirected to the recipes. Come join me for a yummy week of veg food!!! Tomorrow Ill make a blog for the Spaghetti Squash. (I cooked that last night and it was so good!)

So.Good.

So.Good.

 

Are You Hungry? BBQ Goodness!

Its been almost a week since Ive posted, and forever since Ive given any recipes! Im really not in the mood to talk about food, I had a delish italian dinner and am full, 😛 but here goes… I made this BBQ Good-ness meal last week and it totally hit the spot!

Over this past weekend I took the children back home to visit for my mothers birthday. We were there from Friday-Monday and had a great time. On Sunday we went to my inlaws church. The service was about ‘hot topic’ issues in politics and what the bible says about them (fantastic!!!) and after the church held a bbq full of pork, chicken, hot dogs (every vegetarian’s dream, huh?), sweet potato casserole, green beans, cold slaw, and bread. Of course I didnt eat the meat, the sweet potato casserole was way to sweet for my liking, and I hate slaw. My lunch consisted of a slice of whole wheat bread and a little bit of the green beans. (By the time dinner rolled around I was starving and ended up eating too much dinner. :/ Boo! Im sure tomorrow’s WIW will be interesting…)

Oh and side note: when I was on the way to throw away my trash I saw a man emptying out a green bean pot, he was removing some kind of ham bone-thing. So great. The greens were cooked using the ham bone– I should have known! Stupid southern cooking. My veg ‘lunch’ ended up being not-so-veg. Lesson: if you eat someone else’s cooking, ask them whats in it/how they cooked it. Dont assume something is veg. Ask questions.

Anyways, that was how not to eat veg at a bbq!! How does a vegan/vegetarian fix bbq? Ill tell ya! 🙂

BBQ Tofu Sadwiches
1 package of extra firm tofu, pressed and sliced into 1/4 inch strips
3/4 your fav BBQ sauce (I like KC Masterpiece Smoky Bourbon)
2 tablespoons dijon mustard
a splash of oil
whole wheat buns, toasted
tomato, sliced
shredded lettuce

BBQ Tofu

BBQ Tofu

Mix the BBQ sauce and mustard. Set aside. Heat a pan with a splash of oil on Med heat. Add tofu strips. Cook until browned on both sides, about 5 mins per side. Reduce heat to low. Add sauce and coat tofu with sauce. Cover and cook for 3 minutes more. Assemble sandwich by placing bbq tofu, lettuce, and tomato on toasted buns. Eat. Enjoy! Side Note: preparing the tofu this was is the fastest method. If you would prefer you can bake it, baked tofu recipe here. (But the baked takes significantly longer to cook.)

Simple Baked Beans
I used The Pioneer Woman’s recipe but altered it to make it simple and to make it veg:
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium green pepper, chopped
3 large cans (28 ounces each) vegetarian baked beans, I used Bush’s Vegetarian Baked Beans.
3/4 cup BBQ sauce (I like KC Masterpiece Smoky Bourbon)
2 tablespoons dijon mustard

Preheat oven to 325. In a lightly oiled pan, cook the onion and bell pepper. 3-4 mins. Add the beans, BBQ sauce, and mustard. Stir well. Bring to a simmer. Pour into large casserole pan. The Pioneer Woman says to bake for 2 hours! But I didnt have that kind of time so I only baked for 45 mins. 😛

Braised Greens with Tomatoes
I love braised greens! Its a yummy way to make sure you are getting your servings of veggies and its more interesting than a boring ole salad (plus, theres no high calorie salad dressing to fuss with). Heres my fav recipe.

Carrot ‘Fries’
Last dish! I found the combo of the baked beans and the tofu sandwich a bit too saucy to eat together. Next time Im in the mood for BBQ-ness Ill probably replace the beans for something lighter. (The bean recipe is still very good but Ill make that again with a different dish.) Carrot ‘fries’ are so.good. and much more healthy than traditional fries. Heres my fav recipe. Make sure you cut the carrots nice and thin.

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