Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Dessert, Gluten-Free, Low Sugar, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish, Snack, Vegan, Vegetarian

Cozy Up with Some Coconut Chia Pudding

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Happy Valentine’s Day! Here’s a little “dessert” to color your day. My parents and I went to First Watch for brunch whilst in Ohio, after such a favorable outing when we were in Florida last May. My mom ordered the AM Superfood Bowl, which consisted of a coconut milk chia pudding topped with bananas, berries and blackberry perseveres and homemade granola. It was delish — literally dessert for breakfast. I usually make chia pudding with almond milk, but full-fat coconut milk was a welcomed surprise. On a whim, I added a pinch of cardamom and the citrus flavor added some levity and brightness to the dish. Enjoy as a snack, topped with fruit and granola for breakfast or with some chocolate for dessert, Coconut Chia Pudding is just one of those things you’ll enjoy again and again.

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Asian, Better Than Takeout, Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Lightened Up, Meal Prep, Vegan, Vegetarian

Pass That Peanut Tofu Stir Fry

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Happy Meatless Monday! I’ve been craving stir fry lately, and Peanut Tofu Stir Fry more than hit the spot. I keep making these impromptu meals with random leftovers, but hey, I’m not complaining. I originally bought some ginger, broccoli slaw, cilantro and zucchini to make Asian Peanut Zoodles, but instead of making stir fry, I used some of these ingredients for a take on Sesame Chicken “Noodle” Soup. My old roommate, Dee, is the queen of stir fry, and her steady stream of tantalizing stir fry snaps was enough to make me want in on the action. I tossed together leftover brown rice, the broccoli slaw, red pepper, edemame and tofu in an easy, yet flavorful peanut sauce.

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Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Italian, One Pot Dish, Vegan, Vegetarian

A Creamy, Tomatoey, Pumpkiny Sauce

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Need a break from marinara sauces, pumpkin sauce or creamy, Alfredo-like sauces? Look no further. This Creamy Tomato Pumpkin Sauce is the perfect blend of garlic, tomatoes and “cream.” When I was little, it would be the dead of summer, and my mom would harvest tomatoes from our tiny garden. She’d chop up tomatoes, fresh basil and garlic, sauté the three into an easy sauce, and sever over pasta; I think this is where I got my inspiration. With leftover pumpkin and yellow squash, a simple sauce emerged fresh heirloom tomatoes (those colors!), carrots and a little garlic. A splash of almond milk (or whatever milk you prefer) adds a new dimension to the sauce to perfectly prepare it for pasta.

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Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Italian, Lightened Up, Low Sugar, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish, Vegan, Vegetarian

Quick & Easy Homemade Marinara Sauce

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Happy meal prep Sunday! Here’s a marinara sauce I made for a veggie lasagna (recipe coming soon!). I decided to make my own because it’s quick, delicious and budget-friendly. I never realized most tomato sauces have sugar as one of the first few ingredients, since sugar brings out the flavor in tomatoes; sometimes those sauces are just too sweet then. It’s hard to find a sauce without any added sugar (Whole Foods’ 365 brand does have a great one). This Basil Marinara Sauce is so easy and literally ready in 20 minutes — plus you get the satisfaction of it being homemade and making it from scratch. With only 5 ingredients, there’s no added sugar or salt, while still bursting with flavor.

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Dairy-Free, Dessert, Gluten-Free, One Pot Dish, Snack, Vegan, Vegetarian

Oh So Satisfying Cinnamon Bites

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It’s that time of year! Time to break out the meal prep and healthy snacks and maybe some indulgences for those New Year’s resolutions. These Cinnamon Almond Bites are perfect for a quick dessert or a taste to satisfying your sweet tooth. I think they’re fine energy bites, and if you choose to coat them in cocoa powder or cinnamon sugar, they become a bitter, dark indulgence or a sweet one. I make them instead of protein muffins and enjoy with some a cup of coffee or with fruit/extra carbs to balance them out. Either way, have fun with these bite-sized energy bites!

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Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish, Soup, Vegan, Vegetarian

A Summer Stew for Any Occasion

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This was a summer stew I made, but froze two servings to pull out when I needed a quick meal. I did just that on the 30th after traveling to Maine and Ohio for the holidays. I enjoyed a bowl sans toppings on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day to stay warm during this arctic blast of weather. Since the stew was summer inspired and based, you can really taste the lemon juice and appreciate summer produce like kale and zucchini. The sweetness from the raisins and sweet potatoes balance the bitterness from the quinoa and kale and acidity of the lemon juice. I added almond milk for a splash of creaminess. I love that this has garlic, ginger and turmeric, which are anti-inflammatories and aid in digestion — just what we need post-holiday binge and indulgences. Serve hot and savor that bowl of Turmeric, White Bean & Quinoa Stew.

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Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish, Vegan, Vegetarian

Hearty Vegetarian Indian Dal

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Mmmm, I love curry. There’s something about the spice seasonings and the heat that continually draws me in. For my love of curry and Indian food, I actually hadn’t heard of dal until I stumbled on Half Baked Harvest‘s version when I saw her Instagram post. Obviously enticed, I saved the recipe for the perfect time. I like making big batch meals and ones that are meatless. This Butternut Squash Tomato Indian Dal is just that; it’s cozy, spicy, hearty and filling. I served the dal with half of my two-ingredient flatbread because the Greek yogurt in the bread cut the spice of the dal and complimented it nicely.

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Dairy-Free, Drinks, Low Sugar, One Pot Dish, Vegan

The New Immunity Latte

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Happy post-turkey day! I originally made this when fighting a cold a few weeks back, and the spiciness of the ginger and cinnamon opened my stuffed-up airways. But now that you’re fighting off that food coma and perhaps even that Thanksgiving’s Eve hangover, here’s an immunity drink to ward off feeling rundown and settle that stomach: a Ginger Turmeric Latte. This tea is packed with ginger, turmeric and cinnamon, all of which may combat inflammation and aid in digestion. Combine the tea with your favorite milk to enjoy as a mild latte or sip as is for a yummy, stronger tea.

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Better Than Takeout, Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish, Vegan, Vegetarian

Easy Peasy Indian Chickpea Curry

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Trader Joe’s Palak Paneer is the puréed spinach with Indian spices and a soft paneer cheese dish pictured below. (P.S. I would totally buy this again), and it pairs so perfectly well with whole wheat naan and this Indian Chana Masala. It’s spiced, has a little heat and is balanced with the palak paneer. Grab some naan with dipping or scooping or serve it over rice, and you have a filling, meatless dish.

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Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Dessert, Lightened Up, Snack, Vegan, Vegetarian

Piece of Cake Donuts: Only 2 Ingredients

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Happy Saturday! What’s a better way to celebrate the weekend than with freshly baked donuts? It went from summer weather (I ran in shorts and a t-shirt on Monday) to winter creeping in (I may have broken out the scarf and gloves later this week). These Two Ingredient Pumpkin Spice Donuts are surprisingly easy! You just need a donut pan, canned pumpkin and a boxed cake mix. I chose a spiced cake mix to complement the pumpkin spice theme, but you can use any cake mix. Although these donuts may be comparable in carbs and sugar, the fat content is reduced by baking them and using pumpkin to bind the dry ingredients together. They’re best hot out of the oven and with a cup of coffee! At least in my opinion, these donuts are a piece of cake — pun intended.

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