All posts by thechanniest

Eat to live; live to eat. Proud to be a woman. Proud to be fit. Proud to be a nurse. Bleeding heart liberal. Changing the world one meal at a time.

Cheezy Broccoli Alfredo with Toasted Cashews


If you think Vegan food is boring or tasteless, then you can shut up now. Seriously!? Look at this bowl. LOOK at it. yum.

Make this recipe and you will be amazed at how a dairy free sauce can be so indulgent and yet so free of cruelty and garbage. You’re welcome.


2 1/2 cups of cauliflower, chopped

1 1/2 cups plain, unsweetened almond milk

1/3 nooch (nutritional yeast)

3-4 tbsp tahini

juice of 1 lemon

1 tbsp garlic oil* (1 clove chopped to sub, more if you like it garlicky)

2 cups of broccoli (to be steamed until crisp-tender)

1 cup toasted cashews (optional, but DUH…. don’t skip these babies!)

1 package of linguine, fettuccine, spaghetti, or whatever pasta you wish* (I used organic spinach and jerusalem artichoke pasta and it was ridiculously good…)

Step one:

Steam cauliflower prior if you wish, (cuts down simmering time, I popped mine in the oven-which was on at 425 for other items I was making- for 15 minutes in a dish with 1 inch of water and a cover, while I prepped the other ingredients, and toasted my cashews; smart!) otherwise add cauliflower, almond milk, garlic oil, tahini, lemon juice, and nooch to a pot, stir as well as you can, and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer for 20-25 minutes until cauliflower is very soft. **SEE STEP TWO!**

(Turn off heat and let it sit for a few minutes to cool down enough to blend safely.)

Step two:

With 5-6 minutes left in cauliflower/sauce cooking time, start your pasta, and steam the broccoli. When Pasta and broccoli are cooked, remove from stove, and place in a large serving dish. Take cauliflower/sauce and blend until smooth in a blender or with a hand blender. Season with salt and pepper, and taste, taste, taste!

*you’ll want to eat it by the spoonful. It’s that good.

Toss with pasta and broccoli when ready, and garnish with freshly toasted cashews. Eat immediately! YUM!

You can easily have two portions of this and not feel guilty. There is NO dairy and it’s actually HEALTHY for you! Not chock full of artery clogging garbage that makes you want to nap afterwards. This dish is fiberlicous and won’t weigh you down.

Unless you’re like me and you eat a TON of it. In which case, you might want to sit for a bit.



Savory vegan Green bean casserole, with quinoa

It’s Thanksgiving time! Why not take this opportunity to save a few sweet animal faces, your own waistline and GI system, and go Vegan?! This dish is a good start. It was adapted from an Earth Balance recipe, with my own delicious additions 🙂 Enjoy!


Savory vegan Green Bean Casserole with quinoa

1/4 cup Earth Balance organic spread

1/4  whole wheat flour (can be GF, or whatever you choose)

1 tbsp soy sauce, or liquid aminos

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1 tbsp dried onion

1/4 nutritional yeast

1 1/2 cups veggie broth

1 can of crispy fried onions (topping, I used Trader Joe’s)

1 package of shiitake mushrooms, slice (8oz?)

1 lbs trimmed and cut green beans (leave them long, or cut up more; you choose!)

1/2 tbsp each fresh/dried chopped sage, thyme, rosemary, marjoram

salt and pepper to taste

1. Start your basic quinoa, to serve with the casserole. I did 1 cup white quinoa and 2 cups veggie broth. Plenty to go around! Set aside when done (takes about 15 minutes).

2. (While quinoa is simmering) In a saucepan, melt earth balance spread (or whatever vegan butter you choose) and add the flour to make a roux. With a whisk, add in the veggie broth, soy sauce, garlic powder, and onions, and whisk until sauce thickens but is smooth. No clumps! Keep heat low and add the herbs, and nutritional yeast, stirring occasionally to prevent burning on the bottom. Season with salt and pepper and taste. (it’s going to be delicious!)

3. while the sauce is coming together, if you’ve another spot on the stove, steam the green beans for 5-8 minutes until crisp-tender, still nice and green. Don’t over steam them! They are going to cook more in the oven. Once steamed, set aside. This could also be done ahead of time, or you could use canned beans. But don’t…. because canned beans suck. 🙂

4. prepare a 9×10 glass casserole dish (or whatever size you have that will fit all this goodness!) and put the steamed green beans in. Toss with sliced mushrooms, sauce, and pop into the oven for 10 minutes, uncovered.

5. Remove from the oven and cover with the crispy fried onions, and bake for another 10-15 minutes, until brown and bubbly on the sides. MMM!

6. Serve immediately with a big scoop of the quinoa. And Enjoy!

Not a single animal had to be harmed during the making of this meal. And doesn’t it feel good? And it’s dairy free, so you skip the bloat and the drag afterwards. Full of protein, and fiber, this will kick your Thanksgiving into high gear.


Broccoli + Cheeze quinoa pilaf because, protein.

Let’s not talk about how long it’s been since I’ve posted a recipe, or anything really, on this poor neglected blog. I’m 33 weeks pregnant and there’s a lot going on in the world, specifically mine. Trader Joe’s makes it all too convenient to whip up cheap, easy, vegan meals (um chickenless crispy tenders? yeah that’s like three nights a week. Kid loves em’). Not to mention, hubby and I LOVE TO EAT OUT 🙂 So it’s Indian, Mexican, Asian, Italian, anything but me in the kitchen. I’m trying to get back into healthier Vegans things before I’m completely exhausted again and not wanting to cook, which hopefully won’t be a good enough excuse for me…. I’ll want to fit back into pre-pregnancy clothes ASAP.

So my friend (and amazing Vegan chef) Michele, posted this on facebook, and I decided not to be lazy! Good for me. *Gold star*

Here’s the original link, but I’ll post the recipe as I followed it for you as well.

final product
Delicious, fiberlicious, protein-packed, and chock-full of vitamin B-12


2 cups fresh (or frozen) Broccoli *I had raw organic from Trader Joe’s*

1 cup white or red quinoa (or mix if you’re bad ass) *I had Trader Joe’s organic white*

2 cups water (to cook quinoa) *vegetable broth is indicated in original recipe, I didn’t have any*

1/3 cup toasted (or raw, but WHY??!) pine nuts *Trader Joe’s. where else!?*

cheeze sauce (see below)

Cheeze sauce!

1/2 cup nooch (nutritional yeast) *love Bob’s Red Mill, large flake. Cheap and easy to use*

1/4 almond milk *I used Pacific organic original- much thinner than other almond milks*

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

2 tablespoons of EVOO

1 tablespoon with ACV (apple cider vinegar)

Dash of cayenne

Dash of Cumin

sea salt & pepper to taste

*Combine all ingredients and whisk until combined, and smooth.*

cheeze-pre mix
ready to whisk!


To cook the quinoa, combine the grains and your liquid of choice into a med sized pot. Bring to a boil, turn to low, and cook until liquid is absorbed, cover on. Should be about 20 mins. I didn’t have vegetable broth, so I used water, +some garlic olive oil and some italian spices for flavor, and it turned out quite nice. While the quinoa is cooking, prepare your cheeze sauce and set aside. Next, steam your broccoli until crisp-tender, and bright green (Mine was raw, steamed 5-8 minutes, frozen may be a bit longer). It will continue to cook when you add to hot quinoa and cheeze sauce, so don’t over do it! When it’s the brightest green it tastes the best, and has the best vitamin content.

While your broccoli is steaming, warm up cheeze sauce on the stove, until it bubbles slightly. If you have enough room on the stove, and can handle four pots, toast up those pine nuts too! I did all this when the quinoa was cooking. Otherwise, toast the pine nuts first and set aside, then start the quinoa, and broccoli after.

Get a big bowl and add your quinoa, which should still be steaming hot, and add your hot cheeze sauce.


Add in your broccoli and pine nuts, and fold in gently.

it’s almost ready! Look at those nuts. MMM.

Serve immediately, and eat a lot of it.

This cheeze sauce is tangy and cheezy. I was surprised at how good it was! I think the Dijon really kicked it up a notch. My semi-picky three year old liked it too. Usually she just wants noodle soup, edamame, and a carrot for dinner. 🙂 My husband will eat most anything, but he is also honest about stuff I make, and he really liked this too. Enjoy!

I will try and cook more, and be less lazy 😛

So….baby is due December 15th. Eventually, whether before then or after then, I’m going to finally be free of the hormones that have caused weird cravings, made me do and eat unnatural and unhealthy things, and have horrible aversions to things I used to love. I CANNOT WAIT TO HAVE MY VEGAN LIFE BACK, HOLY CRAP.


Vegan apple pie muffins, and vegan chocolate chip banana muffins

YUM TOWN! That’s where I live. I’ve been on a baking binge for two days because I had a lot of fruit to use up so, baking sounded like a good idea. We also had cooler than normal weather which warranted actual oven use. SO I made muffins with bananas, and muffins with apples. They were both delicioso! I also made apple sauce on the night I did the banana muffins, and used that in the apple muffins because that’s how I ROLL.

Banana chocolate chip muffins:

1 1/4 cups flour (your choice, I used whole wheat)
1/4 cup quick oats (I had Bob’s red mill organic, make sure they’re quick oats)
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp fine sea salt
3 super ripe bananas (mashed, organic if you have them)
1/2 cup sugar (I used coconut sugar which is delicious)
1/3 cup coconut oil (organic, DUH)
1 flax egg *1 tbsp ground flax + 3 tbsp warm water* (you could use a chicken egg also)
1/2 cup chocolate chips or walnuts
chia seeds for sprinkle, to your discretion

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Combine dry ingredients in med sized bowl
2. combine moist/wet ingredients in separate small bowl *mash bananas until liquified unless you like chunks*
3. Mix wet/dry ingredients together. Fold in nuts or chocolate chips if using.
4. grease muffin tin or bread pan
5. pour in your batter, and bake for 25 mins, or until toothpick-check comes out clean
6. let them sit before taking from tin, and enjoy!

Apple pie muffins:

1 ¼ cup whole wheat flour

¼ cup organic quick oats

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp baking powder

½ tsp fine sea salt

1 tsp cinnamon


1 cup apples skin-on, chopped very small

1 ¼ (+more if batter is dry) apple sauce *see below for crock pot sauce!

1/3 cup organic coconut oil

½ tbsp fresh lemon juice

1 flax egg *1 tbsp ground flax meal, +3 tbsp warm water*

*if your applesauce is store bought, and unsweetened, I would recommend adding 1/4-1/3 cup brown sugar because it won’t be sweet enough. If you use my crock pot sauce (below), you won’t need any more sugar. The sauce is very sweet!*

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine wet and dry ingredients well. Add more apple sauce to batter if it’s dry. Scoop into greased muffin tins with ice cream scoop (I have three sizes, the biggest size is PERFECT for muffins). Bake for 25 minutes, allow them to cool, eat immediately.

Crock pot applesauce (+pears)

Prep your crock pot-

chop 4-5 small apples into med sized chunks, skin ON. 2 very ripe green pears, chopped med sized with skin on. 1 Cinnamon stick, 1 tsp lemon zest. Add all of this to crock pot and set to HIGH for 6-7 hours. Not only will your kitchen/house smell AMAZING, but you’re saving oodles of $ because this is homemade. And it’s bonkers good. I’d spread it on toast, swirl in oatmeal, and/or use in baking. TO. DIE. FOR. When the timer is up and it moves to ‘warm’, dump apples/pears (minus the cinnamon stick! PLEASE do NOT leave that in there) into nutribullet or blender, and blend until smooth. Take a big spoonful for a tester. You’re welcome.

who cares if it’s still summer?! Bake. Unless it’s like a million degrees in which case you’re wasting valuable resources. :p

The soul-warming, cure-all soup + a workout!

Yay for soup! and BOO that it’s cold enough here in Connecticut to still “need” it. ugh.

Oh well. This is your go-to, bona fide cure-all soup. I even made it weekly when I was breastfeeding because it was an amazing milk-increasing elixir, that also tasted great. I may have posted this before, but I’m posting again because it’s amazing! It’s chock full of ginger, sweet potatoes, and sweetened with a touch of sugar. You could use stevia, but brown sugar or coconut sugar are best for the flavor. If you’re sick with the stomach flu, sniffles, or any other ailment, and your soul needs a warm-up, this soup is for you. It is of Taiwanese origin, and a favorite recipe that I’ve picked up from my awesome mother-in-law. AND, it’s so easy to make! If you’ve got a crock pot, it’s even easier. Let’s get started.

The soul-warming, cure-all soup 

3-4 medium sized sweet potatoes, peeled, and chopped into big chunks

1 meg sized ginger root, sliced and gently crushed (to release extra flavor)

1/3-1/2 cup coconut sugar (substitute with sweetener of your choice. I have used agave syrup before, about 1/4 cup)

filtered water (4-5 cups)

Grab your crock pot, or a big soup pot on your stove. Peel and chop your sweet P’s about this size:

These are Trader Joe’s Organic sweet P’s. Love em’!

Smash and chop your ginger- I chose a med sized guy, and actually didn’t use the extra nub shown in the picture.

Organic ginger! from my local Mrs. Green’s natural market.
sliced and gently smashed. Not too loud! Sleeping baby in the next room!

Add your chopped sweet potatoes, and ginger (again, I’m using a crock pot.)

Haven’t used this guy in a while! Perfect excuse to dust it off 😉


Fill pot with filtered water until potatoes float and are covered.

it’s about 1-inch from the top of the pot. Don’t over fill! It will eventually come to a simmer, and might sizzle over…

Set your crock pot to high, and put time up to 5 1/2 or 6 hours. If you’re one the stove top, low-medium heat is best. Too high of heat will cook some of the nutrients out of the sweet P’s and ginger too quickly. These babies like a slow simmer. Probably about 45-60 minutes stove-top, or more, until potatoes are nice and soft. When using the crock pot, at the 5 hour mark (or before you serve, from the stove-top), add your sugar. Adding in the beginning makes the soup taste different (not sure how), and also doesn’t allow the sweet P’s to cook as well. I always add it in the end, taste and add more if need be. Best to start with 1/4 or 1/3 cup and increase as needed. I’ve never used more than 1/2 cup. The potatoes are sweet as they are, and too much sugar will make it yucky! If you’re not keen on the super-gingery feel, then start with 1/2-3/4 of a ginger root. I love a spicy soup so I go all out and use a big guy! 🙂 Serve hot, and eat frequently. Easy on the stomach, and perfect for any time of day. Thank the Taiwanese folk for this lovely soup! and enjoy!


Eat clean, save green, and stop disease in it’s tracks.


p.s. Here is a butt-busting workout for your thighs! YOWSA! I’m sore!

pretty tough for a 30 minute video! Watch out for the Sidewinder Mt. Climbers + plank raises! *killer* (yeah imagine that fun move….)

Smoky BBQ and Sweet Onion Tempeh Sandwich

I know I’ve come up with some great sammie’s before… but this one might top them all! I think it’s the best one yet. It’s spicy, sweet, smoky, and delicious. Packed with protein, fiber, and freshness, it’s perfect any time of day. Have one for breakfast!

Smoky BBQ and Onion Tempeh Sammie


2 slices of flourless, sprouted wheat bread, toasted (Ezekiel, Trader Joe’s, Alvarado St. Bakery, etc.)

handful of fresh greens of your choice (I had a combo of chopped organic chard and collards)

a big spoonful of dijon caramelized onions (recipe below)

2 slices of smoky grilled tempeh (recipe below also)

a nice smear of your favorite BBQ sauce on the tempeh

Now, eat that sammie! This will help cure any level of hunger. You might just have two though…. add in your own variations! I bet some roasted veggies and Veganaise would be awesome too. Enjoy!

see below for recipes! And get out there and buy your own veganomicon book!

Smoky Grilled Tempeh (very similar to tempeh bacon!)

on my Orgreenics grill pan, I can cook this all year round and still get that grill feel.

(today’s recipes are courtesy of Veganomicon; I doubled the tempeh recipe because I had two packages of tempeh I wanted to cook! I double all the ingredients except the smoke and syrup, I did 1 1/2 of each. Still tasted awesome!)

1 package of organic Tempeh

3/4 cup of organic veggie broth

2 tbsp soy sauce, or Bragg aminos

2 tbsp ACV (apple cider vinegar)

2 tbsp liquid smoke

2 tbsp olive oil 2 tsp pure maple syrup (more if you want a sweeter marinade)

2-3 cloves garlic, crushed

In a medium sized pan, bring enough water to boil, to cover the amount of tempeh you have. Slice into small triangles, or like I did, into “steaks”. Cut each block of tempeh in half, then each square in half- making two rectangles, and then slice the rectangles width wise into thin rectangles. Turn to med-low, and placed tempeh in the boiled water for 10 mins, covered. This softens the tempeh a bit, takes some of the bitterness out, and preps them to take on a good marinade. Make the marinade while the tempeh is cooking.

Whisk all ingredients together well and using tongs, carefully place the tempeh into the marinade. Cover and let sit for 1-2 hours. Turn once during that time to ensure even marinating. This was easy to make during nap time! Corinne slept over 2.5 hrs, so I had ample time to prepare and cook. I marinated for about 1.5 hours. Overnight would probably be even better! You can broil these in the oven, pan fry, or grill. I used my indoor grill pan, for some good “grill marks”. Each side took about 5-7 minutes on med heat. I have an electric stove, so it kind of sucks for cooking (takes long to heat up, uneven temperature and cooking, stove stays crazy hot when you’re done….) On a gas grill, or  an actual outside grill, times would be less. Baste each side with extra marinade while cooking. I basted them one more time with the marinade after I placed them on my serving plate. Becuase… why not!? Serve as a side dish, a main protein, or on a SAMMIE! :p

Sweet Dijon onions

Sandwich candy!

2 tbsp olive oil (I used garlic olive oil)

2 large vidalia onions, quartered and sliced as thin as you can (I actually used regular white onions, and it was still very sweet)

1/4 mirin (could use white wine, I used mirin)

2 tbsp pure maple syrup (I used Trader Joe’s Organic Agave, syrup blend)

1 tsp white balsamic vinegar (could also use red wine vinegar)

1 tsp dijon mustard

pinch of salt

Saute onions in oil until they are soft and honey brown. This is done best over med-low heat. Too high of heat will crisp up some onions, and you want them to stay soft. When they’re ready, add in your whisked ingredients, and cook for another 30 seconds or so. Remove from heat and serve warm! This goes perfectly with the savory/salty/smoky flavors in the tempeh and BBQ sauce for the sammie I made. I would also go well over sauteed greens, rice, grilled veggies, or just by the spoonful. It’s really sweet! Almost like candy. Enjoy! :p

Thanks to Veganomicon for these great recipes, and my own taste buds for the awesome sandwich combination. I hope you enjoy this as much as me! If you’ve got a few hours of free time, this is totally worth the prep. Plus you’ll have plenty leftover for other sammies, meals, and for snacking. It’s all clean, and fresh, and vegan! Always vegan.

Here is the veganomicon Pinterest board! YUMTASTIC

eat clean, and animal friendly!



a damn good chocolate chip cookie

SERIOUSLY. Who doesn’t like a chocolate chip cookie!? FOR reals.


This one is easy. It’s very low fat, and OIL FREE! yippee! It’s also tasty, chewy, and moist. All the best things a cookie should be.

Stop what you’re doing and make them now.

Vegan Chocolate Chip cookies

2 very ripe bananas, mashed into liquid

3/4 cup of applesauce (*I used a serving of trader joe’s applesauce with cinnamon, it was just too convenient!)

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 tsp vanilla

2 cups whole wheat flour (or flour of your choice, could make this GF)

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

3/4-1 cup chocolate chips (vegan, carob chips, dark chocolate)

Preheat oven to 375. Mix all wet ingredients well, until as smooth as possible. Blend it if you can! I chose for a chunkier mix because I didn’t want to turn on the blending while my little boo is asleep.

you gotta get rid of those brown bananas! why not make COOKIES….
only 1/2 cup sugar is needed, these are super sweet with the chocolate chips, and apple/banana mix!

When wet ingredients are mixed well, fold into dry ingredients. Use a rubber spatula, and works those arms! This batter will be thick. Add in chocolate chips, and scoop onto greased tray. I have a silicon baking mat, which is AMAZING and perfect for oil-free baking. Easy to use and easy to clean! I made mine BIG. Because I like a big ass cookie….. what?!

ugh so goooood! Go ahead. Take a batter sample. No eggs, here! No tummy ache 🙂

Bake at 375 for 10-12 minutes. I turned off the oven at 10 minutes and left them in there for another 4. They came out perfect. Chewy, soft, sweet, chocolatey. All the things a cookie should be! You don’t need oil and eggs to make a good cookie. I’m going to give one to my little boo for breakfast, because you know what? They’re that healthy. Ok… I’ll give her some yogurt and maybe a smoothie too. But that just goes to show how not bad these are for you. 🙂

Serve warm with your favorite no-cow milk. xxoo

Enjoy your weekend! I’m going on a road trip, so I might not post a recipe until I get back, unless I have an epiphany. Perhaps I’ll find an awesome vegan spot in my hometown and tell you about it. Til’ then…. toodles!

Eat clean, and green. ❤