Better Than Takeout, Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Mexican, Salad, Vegan, Vegetarian

Gotta Try Sofrita Salad

Copycat Sofritas Salad

The ingredient list looks intimidating, but really the whole process is quite simple: make the sofritas, chop the salsa and assemble the salad. Easy, right? After taste-testing my mom’s Sofrita Burrito Bowl from Chipotle last fall, something about the lightness of tofu sounded great for a hot, summer day. I cooked the tofu with the same spices you would for chili and added it over chopped iceberg lettuce, avocado and red bell pepper. Throw together a homemade salsa. (You can literally throw in everything washed, whole and as is — i.e. full cherry tomatoes and cilantros with stems if you’re feeling exceptionally lazy and/or crunched for time.) Everything comes together as light and fresh for this Copycat Sofritas Salad. Happy Meatless Monday!

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Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Low Sugar, Meal Prep, Vegan, Vegetarian

Stir It Up with Veggie Stir Fry

Vegetable Cashew Stir Fry

I haven’t made a stir fry in a long time, and this Vegetable Cashew Stir Fry sure didn’t disappoint. Obviously I found this on Pinterest, but I really liked the idea of serving this over rice noodles instead of rice. I have so many rice noodles left over and begging to be used after making the No Fish Sauce Pad Thai and Pho Soup. To make it easy, I used vegetables already cut and combined from Whole Foods and added red pepper, edamame and cashews to the mix. You can easy opt out of a Meatless Monday dish and add in beef, chicken or shrimp; tofu would even work well here — keep it meatless! You’d be amazed at how quickly this came together and how easy it is to have fresh stir fry for dinner.

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Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Salad, Seafood, Vegetarian

Scrumptiously Colorful Spicy Shrimp Salad

Spicy Shrimp Avocado Salad with Ginger Miso Dressing

So I’m pretty sure this meal came together in under 20 min. last night. Forget the salad for a second. How have I never made this Ginger Miso Dressing?! It’s life changing. I can’t believe I’ve never bought miso until now. The flavor profile is amazing. I see some miso soup in my future…But back to the salad. It’s fresh, light, has a crunch, but’s still creamy and most important is packed with flavor. (You totally thought I was going to say nutrients, right? That too). Substitute chicken for shrimp or exclude the shrimp for a vegan dish. I’m addicted. Thank goodness I found a Pinch of Yum‘s version on Pinterest. This Spicy Shrimp Avocado Salad with Ginger Miso Dressing was totally a winner if I do say so myself.

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Appetizer, Entrée, Local Finds, Vegetarian

Simply Savory Kale Flatbread

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My mom discovered this recipe for a kale flatbread a couple summers ago in Southern Living; after some modifications, it’s too good not to share. Even my carnivore of a boyfriend approved and heartily inhaled one flatbread I made for dinner last winter (but probably along with one containing some form of meat). My parents and I traveled to Ohio this past weekend to visit my dad’s mom, and we made the flatbread for dinner on Friday night. My aunt and uncle grew curly kale in their garden and it’s thriving. Oh my goodness, the plant was so huge that it looked like a small 3 foot bush (see pictures below). Naturally we just had to incorporate abundant amounts of their homegrown kale into a meal, and we knew the Kale & Rosemary Flatbread was one such recipe that would do the job quite well. The rosemary adds a fantastic flavor and a fresh, yet savory element, especially along with the creamy fontina cheese and pungent parmesan cheese. In fact, there’s so much flavor that you forget your only topping is really just kale. So enjoy. Indulge a little, and pass that Kale & Rosemary Flatbread.

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Dairy-Free, Entrée, Italian, Vegan, Vegetarian

No-Cream-Added Creamy Squash Pasta

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Another fall classic — Creamy Hubbard Squash Linguine with Zoodles & Sage. When my mom and I went to buy local orchard apples and pumpkins at Wallingford’s Orchard, we also picked up spaghetti, delicata and hubbard squash. (Hubbard is a light grayish-blue in color, teardrop in shape and similar to butternut squash in taste.) Maybe I just needed a break from pumpkin, or I’ve just been dying to try this delicious squash linguine recipe I found on Pinterest. The puréed squash is rich and creamy, so much so, you’d never know there’s no cream; the sage amplifies natural flavors and resembles thyme in taste. The hubbard and sage sauce might be bursting with so much flavor that it could be a knockout on its own — soup anyone? Having previously roasted the squash, the only thing to do next was to try this linguine recipe. I added in both “zoodles” or zucchini noodles and sautéed spinach for some needed veggies, and whole-wheat linguine for better carbs. The zoodles and whole-wheat linguine seamlessly blend; you’d never know you’re eating zucchini instead of pasta at times. The modifications were delectably perfect, and I can’t wait to have this again.

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Appetizer, Better Than Takeout, Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Lightened Up, Side, Snack, Vegan, Vegetarian

Simplified Veggie Rolls

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After trying Giada’s version of fresh spring rolls with the spicy chili Greek yogurt sauce this summer, here’s a much, much easier version: Veggie Spring Rolls with Sriracha Soy Sauce. Simple ingredients assembled in a fresh way. No complicated sauce or cooking soba noodles — just vegetables you have on hand paired with sriracha and soy sauce. When I want a veggie fix without a salad, these fresh spring rolls become option number two. Perfect for your next holiday party, get-together or perhaps even football showing (you need to balance out or substitute the chips and wings somehow, right?). The Veggie Spring Rolls somehow manage to be both extravagant and simple, but most importantly, always colorfully delicious.

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Entrée, Italian, Lightened Up, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish

Tasty Turkey Meatballs

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It’s that time of year. If you’re like me and in the Northeast, you probably got some snow today. Toss in the time change with early darkness, and you’re in need of a hearty, cold-weather meal. I don’t think turkey is as flavorful as beef, but adding the fresh basil and red pepper brings the turkey meatballs to a whole new level. Make a large batch to freeze or plan meals ahead, place the meatballs over spaghetti squash, zoodles or whole-wheat pasta, and you have a lovely meal. I enjoyed my turkey meatballs over spaghetti squash, sautéed cherry tomatoes and zucchini, and a spicy marinara sauce. Top with fresh basil and parmesan and just how can you say no?
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Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Italian, Side, Vegan, Vegetarian

The New Classic Side

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What a simple, easy, delicious side and most importantly, a new classic. This is one of the main recipes in my arsenal that I repeatedly use; it goes with anything and everything — substitute for pasta, pairs well with fish, chicken sausage, chicken, turkey meatballs . . . The Spicy Garlic Sautéed Kale & Spinach gives you some of your daily dose of greens and adds color and flavor to any plate. Can’t deny that, right?

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

The Veggie Vision “Pasta”

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Spaghetti squash is my go-to cold weather meal. With the cool days moving in and socks and sweaters becoming abundant, a fall twist on your favorite and classic pasta dish is in order. To celebrate a “Meatless Monday,” I’ve added cannellini beans for protein, and butternut squash to utilize another fall favorite. Throw in your other favorite veggies, top with the marinara sauce of your choice and you have a light but hearty and savory meal! Thank you, rosemary, for this Fall Vegetable “Spaghetti.”

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Entrée, Gluten-Free, Vegetarian

Positively Pumpkin “Pasta”

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Mmmm, more pumpkin recipes. Sounds like fall to me. In honor of Meatless Monday, here’s a pumpkin recipe to satisfy your pumpkin cravings in a not-so-sweet, but savory way and tackles a meatless meal. This Creamy Pumpkin Sauce is originally served over ravioli, but I love spaghetti squash just as much (maybe even more, which is saying a lot!). This sauce would also deliciously pair with pasta, tortellini or just over sautéed vegetables for a meal or side. Next on the agenda: to try this with plain almond milk instead of half & half. Either way, this pumpkin sauce tastes savory and creamy — without being too rich — and is a refreshingly different fall dish.

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