Monday, July 21, 2014

Chocolate Chip Cookie Sandwiches: Best Ever Vegan Cookie Recipe!

This recipe has never failed me! I hope you enjoy them. I made them for my birthday this year. 29..... yikes!

Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie Sandwiches
Makes about 36 cookies/ 18 sandwiches

  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup vegan butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup coconut sugar 
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • egg replacer for 2 eggs (I use Ener-G Egg Replacer)
  • 2 cups vegan chocolate chips (I use Ghiradelli Semi-sweet Chocolate Chips)
  • 16oz Vegan Icing of choice (I use Duncan Hines Creamy Home-Style Frosting; Classic Vanilla)

PREHEAT oven to 375° F. Cover 2 baking sheets with parchment paper

COMBINE flour, baking soda and salt in small bowl. Beat butter, coconut sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl until creamy. Add egg replacer. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in chocolate chips. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto baking sheets. 

BAKE for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.  

ASSEMBLE cookie sandwiches by placing 1 rounded tablespoon of icing between every 2 cookies. Place sandwiches in airtight containers and keep refrigerated. 

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Mom's Famous Banana Bread

This is my mom's recipe, tweaked a little to be made to be vegan. :)

  • 8 bananas
  • 1/4 cup ground flaxseed
  • 2 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup vegan butter
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts 
  1. Whip butter and sugar together in a large bowl and set aside.
  2. In a food processor, blend together all of the bananas. Add the flaxseed and blend until smooth. Add the walnuts and pulse until they are evenly distributed. 
  3. Add the banana mixture to the butter and sugar. Add the remaining ingredients and stir together. 
  4. Pour into two large bread pans, filling each 2/3 full. 
Bake at 325 for about an hour. 

I made each of my running buddies a "mini" loaf of banana bread for Christmas. Hope everyone has a Merry Christmas! I made a blackberry lemon cheesecake today that I will have to post about soon :)

Blackberry Lemon Cheesecake

Merry Christmas, Friends!!


  • 1-14oz package firm silken tofu
  • 8oz vegan cream cheese
  • 1 cup raw cashews (soaked overnight)---optional
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons corn starch
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup, plus 6 fresh blackberries
  • 1 prepared pie crust

Combine all ingredients in a food process EXCEPT blackberries and blend until VERY smooth. Remove 1/2 of the cheesecake mixture and set aside. Add and blend 2/3 cup blackberries with the other half of the cheesecake filling. Pour the 2 mixtures into a pie pan however you would like. I did blackberry on the bottom and plain on the top. You could also swirl them together. Bake for 45 minutes at 350. Top the cake with blackberries. Allow 2 hours to cool. Refrigerate overnight. 

Monday, December 23, 2013

Easy Peasy Lentil Cheesey Burgers

This is a recipe I have modified from the recipe book "How it all Vegan" by Tanya Barnard and Sarah Kramer. I made sweet potato fries as a side. 
  • 3/4 cup ground flax seeds
  • 2 cups cooked or canned lentils
  • 1 cup vegan bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onion
  • 3 tbs coconut oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 4 slices of vegan mozzarella cheese (optional)

Combine all ingredients, except for 2 tablespoons of the flax seeds, in a small bowl. Divide and shape into 4 burger patties. Coat each patty with the remaining flax seeds. 

Cook on a lightly oiled frying pan on medium-high heat for 5-10 minutes, flipping occasionally. When burgers are almost done, top with a slice of cheese. Cover the frying pan with a lid for about 2 minutes, or until cheese has softened. Serve on a vegan burger bun with desired condiments (ketchup- duh) :)

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Mozzarella Stuffed Meat-less Loaf --- and an Update on my Life

My excuse for infrequent posts is always because I'm busy being busy. But I am! For anyone who didn't know, I know have a full time teaching job at St. Aloysius Catholic School in Springfield as the preschool-8th grade art teacher AND...drumroll.... Jr. High ENGLISH. I know, yikes! It's all very new, but that is never a bad thing. I ALSO have a new part time job at a new restaurant in Springfield called Engrained Brewing Company. I've never been a waitress before, its definitely not easy. I have a whole new respect for servers... but it is also very fun, the people I work with are a blast, and it's pretty good money. The free beers every time you work is a nice perk too.

We brew our own beer at Engrained, and most, if not all, the food comes from local farmers. The only problem is that Chef LOVES his meat, and so the menu is primarily meat. He has some great ideas though, and I often find myself mimicking his recipes.... like his honey basil salad dressing, the horseshoe with cheese sauce, and the Mozzarella Stuffed Meatloaf (below). My recipe is a copy-cat mix from this recipe at "Oh She Glows" and what I see Chef make at Engrained.

PS: if you want to check out Engrained and are a vegan, come check it out. We do have some great salads, a daily "vegan special", and you can even order a portobello burger on most days--- the cooks are very accommodating. :)

Mozzarella stuffed Meat-less Loaf

Yield: 8 thick slices

  • 1 cup dry lentils
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 3 TBS ground flax seed
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup sweet onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup grated sweet potato
  • 1 medium carrot, grated
  • 1/3 of an apple, peeled, grated (makes 1/3 cup grated apple)
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 3/4 cup raw toasted walnuts, roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp rosemary
  • Chopped parsley for garnish
  • 1/3 cup regular oats, ground into a flour (use GF oats for gluten-free option)
  • 1 tbsp ground flax seed
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs (I used 3 slices of a GF brown rice bread)
  • 1 cup vegan mozzarella cheese ( I would suggest Daiya shreds, which is not what I used but I will in the future.... Daiya always does the trick).
  • Ketchup

  1. In a medium sized pot, add 3 cups of water and a vegetable bouillon cube and boil water until cube is dissolved. Alternatively, you can also use already prepared veggie stock. Rinse lentils and pick over being sure to remove any small pebbles that may be in the mix. Add lentils, bring to boil, and reduce heat to low and simmer until liquid is absorbed and lentils are tender (about 40 minutes). Be sure to stir the lentils frequently so they do not stick to the bottom of the pot. Once the lentils are cooked, remove from heat and set aside to cool.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 F and line a loaf pan with parchment so that parchment paper hangs over the edges by 2 inches.
  3. Mix 3 tbsp of ground flax with 1/2 cup warm water and stir well. Set aside for at least 5-10 minutes so it can gel up (this is your "flax egg")/
  4. In a large skillet over medium heat, sauté onion and minced garlic for about 5 minutes on low-medium heat, being careful not to burn. After the onions are tender, add carrot and potato and sauté for 2-3 minutes over low heat. Add grated apple, raisins, and chopped walnuts and sauté another minute or two.  Add thyme, rosemary, salt, and pepper to taste. Remove from heat and set aside.
  5. Place bread and oatmeal in a food processor and process until it becomes close to a powder. 
  6. Once the lentils are cooled, take 3/4 of the lentils and place into food processor. Process until mostly smooth (some small lentils will remain). Now take the processed lentils and scoop into a large bowl. Add in the remaining 1/4 of non-processed lentils and place into bowl. Add the breadcrumbs, flax egg, veggie mixture, oat flour, and ground flax seed. Stir well with a spoon and then remove the spoon and mix well with your hands, pressing it through your fingers. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary.
  7. Dump 1/3 the mixture into your loaf pan and spread out with a spoon. Now take your hands and press the mixture firmly and evenly into the pan. Add 1/2 cup of daiya in a even layer on top. Repeat this again, and finish off the top with the last 1/3 of the lentil mixture. Top with a thin layer of ketchup. 
  8.  Bake uncovered 45 minutes at 350F.

Cool for about 10-15 minutes, sprinkle with parsley, and serve. Serves about 8 thick slices.

That's all for now! Can't wait to try something else. If you are in the mood for a Fall treat, you should check out these recipes:
Butternut Squash and Apple Soup
 Pumpkin Lasagna
Stuffed Acorn Squash
Sweet Potato and Black Bean Chili

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Veggie Horseshoe with Vegan Cheese Sauce

If you aren't from central IL, then there is a good chance you haven't tried a horseshoeThe horseshoe sandwich originated in Springfield, Illinois. This open-faced sandwich begins with thick-sliced toasted bread, most often Texas toast and most often hamburger patties, but there are many kinds. Here is the vegan version of the horseshoe with sweet potato fries instead of the traditional fries

Ingredients for cheese sauce:

  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 6 tbs nutritional yeast
  • 1 tbs earth balance vegan butter
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt and pepper to taste
  1. Whisk all ingredients together in a small saucepan. Turn stovetop to low and simmer for 10 minutes.

Ingredients for horseshoe:
  • 5 sweet potatoes, cut into fries
  • 4 pieces of bread, toasted
  • 1 zucchini, sliced
  • 1 yellow squash, sliced
  • 1 small eggplant, cubed
  • 1 8oz package of mushrooms, sliced
  • Vegan cheese sauce
  • 2 green onions, sliced
  1. Preheat oven to 400. Spray a large cookie sheet with non stick spray. Add salt and pepper to fries. Bake fries for 45-50 minutes, stirring once after 20 minutes.
  2. Sauté mushrooms, eggplant, and squash in 2 tbs coconut oil on medium/high heat until soft- 20-30 minutes.
  3. Prepare your horseshoe by placing 1 slice of bread on the bottom of a plate or shallow bowl. Top the bread generously with the sautéed veggies, fries, cheese sauce, and green onion (in that order).
I also made ketchup to go along. Best horseshoe I've ever had.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Zuccini Pasta Parmesan

Gluten free zucchini parmesan I made for my baby brother! This served 2 people, BUT I had 2 modest servings and chris had 3 large helpings.  He ate it all up! So I guess this serves 3-5 normal people. ;) CHRIS.

Here is what you will need--
  • 3-4 organic zucchini (if they aren't organic, better peel them first.... but I didn't)
  • 3 tb melted coconut oil
  • 1 cup gluten free bread crumbs ( I used Enery-G brand). You could also use corn flakes.
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tb Italian seasonings
  • 1/2 tsp salt and pepper 
  • 1/2 cup vegan mozzarella cheese shreds (I used Daiya)
  • 1tb vegan parmesan cheese (I used Galaxy)
  • 25 oz red pasta sauce of your choice. Or you can use my recipe :)

  1. Preheat oven to 400.
  2. Use a julienne peeler to create your "noodles". I promise it does not take as long as it appears to. any extra pieces that were too small to use for noodles I just chopped up and added in.
  3. Coat noodles with coconut oil in a glass baking dish and bake for 10 minutes.
  4. Combine bread crumbs, garlic powder, italian seasonings, 1/2 cup of the cheese shreds, and all of the parmesan. 
  5. After 10 minutes, add 1/2 of the pasta sauce to the noodles. Spread the bread crumb mixture evenly on top of the noddles. Top with remaining sauce and cheese. 
  6. Bake for an additional 10-15 minutes. Don't bake too long or the noodles will get mushy!!


Hehe.... yes I did that!

Did my last tri of the year today! Yikes.... back to work SOON. Summer is never long enough.