Gluten-Free Burrito Bowls with Avocado-Lime Rice


This is my new favorite versatile meal. I saw this recipe for the avocado rice, where they also suggested making burrito bowls using it. Obviously, I wasn’t keen on their meat and dairy version, so I made my own, healthier ones. I also made some changes to the rice recipe by using this awesome rice from Lundberg. The guys tend to be white rice kind of men, but there were no complaints! It’s a blend of sweet brown rice, short grain brown rice, long grain brown rice, whole grain Wehani (brand) rice, whole grain black Japonica (brand) rice.


And I have to mention the quite ingenious Velcro re-closeable bag!


This is such a fresh, simple, and healthy meal where everyone in the family can create their own with their favorite fresh ingredients. Now, my new favorite ingredient . . . is this tri-bean blend. Organic and on sale for $1 a can! Love these. Packed with protein and fiber.


So, on to the recipe!

INGREDIENTS: (Makes 6 bowls)


3-1/2 C water

2 C Lundberg Jubilee rice

2 avocados, mashed

1/2 C cilantro, chopped

zest and juice from one lime

The beans:

3 cans tri-bean blend (black bean, pinto, and kidney)

2 tsp cumin

2 tsp Ancho Chili pepper

1 tsp garlic powder

1/2 tsp salt

1/3 C water

The rest (toppings):

Green onion, sliced

Tomato, diced

Daiya cheese

Sour cream

Lettuce, chopped


Corn tortilla crunchies/chips


The rice will take 35-40 minutes, so you’ll want to get that started first. Bring the 3-1/2 cups of water to a boil, add the rice, stir, cover, and reduce heat to low. Check after 30 minutes.


Meanwhile, in a small to medium saucepan, add the beans, seasonings, and water. Heat on low to medium heat, stirring occasionally, until heated through.


When the rice is done, stir in the mashed avocados, cilantro, lime zest, and lime juice.


Fill a bowl with about 1 to 1-1/2 cups of the avocado rice . . .


 . . . layer on some beans and toppings and enjoy!


Quinoa with Dried Apricots and Black Beans


The next time someone asks you, “Where do you get your protein?” you can (politely) point out this dish as one of numerous options. Quinoa is a complete protein, meaning it contains all 9 amino acids essential to human health. It offers up roughly 8 grams of protein per cup and also passes along calcium, iron, folate, manganese, and other vitamins. Black beans also carry nearly 15 grams of protein per cup, so add some veggies and you have healthy lunch!


1/2 C red quinoa, rinsed and drained

1/2 C regular quinoa, rinsed and drained

1 tsp Better than Bouillon paste

1-1/2 C water

1 C fresh cilantro, chopped

1 C green onions, sliced

1 C dried apricots, chopped

1/3 C pepitas (toasted pumpkin seeds)

1 15 oz can black beans, rinsed and drained

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp lime juice

2 Tbs red wine vinegar

2 Tbs olive oil


In a medium sauce pan, whisk together the bouillon and water; bring to a boil. Stir in the quinoa, cover and cook on low for 15-20 minutes. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine the cilantro, green onion, apricots, pepita seeds, salt, lime juice, red wine vinegar, and olive oil.


Once the quinoa is finished, add it, along with the black beans to the bowl.


Combine well and enjoy! (You can also chill it in a covered dish and serve cold).

Spicy Empanadas


Happy New Year!

We spent our New Year’s Eve with friends and I brought these empanadas. I’ve made similar ones before and I noticed that I had written 5-6 jalapenos for that recipe. Those must have been some pretty mild peppers, because I used one in this recipe and they were plenty zippy! I changed these up a little and they turned out great. I think adding a chipotle-flavored Field Roast sausage link would also be great for the filling. I’m going to have to figure out how to keep them from opening up during the baking process, but it didn’t seem to make a difference in taste—they were gone in minutes!



3 C flour + some for kneading
3 tsp Ener-G Egg Replacer + 4 Tbs water
12 Tbs Earth Balance (1-1/2 sticks)
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbs white vinegar
1/3 to 1/2 C water


8-oz non-dairy cream cheese
2 Tbs lime juice
1 Tbs almond milk + some for brushing
1 tsp shallot salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 C fresh cilantro, chopped
1/2 C vegan pepper jack, shredded
1 tsp cumin
1 jalapeno, chopped fine
1/3 C red bell pepper, chopped small
1/2 medium yellow onion, chopped small
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 Tbs olive oil


To make the dough, combine the egg replacer with the water and process until foamy.


Add the flour, Earth Balance, salt, vinegar, and water. Process until well combine.


Transfer to a lightly floured surface and knead for about 3 minutes. Wrap with plastic wrap and chill for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil and garlic in a medium skillet. Add the onions, jalapeno, and bell pepper. Season with cumin and saute 5-7 minutes, then remove from the heat.


Using a mixer, combine the cream cheese, lime juice, almond milk, shallot salt, and garlic powder. Stir in the cilantro, cheese, and pepper mixture.


Preheat oven to 400. Roll out the dough and using a disk, bowl or cup, cut out 4″ circles.


Place about a tablespoon of the filling in the middle of dough circle. Fold over and you can either use a fork to seal the edges closed, or a pastry wheel cutter, then place onto a large baking sheet.


Bake for 15 minutes, then brush the tops with almond milk. Bake another 5-7 minutes, or until the tops brown. Enjoy!

Cinnamon-Soaked Wheat Berry Salad

I’ve never had anything with wheat berries in it . . . at least I don’t think so. I had bought a bag a while ago for another recipe (that I can’t even remember now) and so when I saw this recipe in Vegetarian Times, I decided to give it a try. Wheat berries refer to the entire kernel, or whole grain form of the wheat. They’re a great source of fiber and are used in breads, pilaf mixes, stir-fry . . . you name it. It usually needs to be soaked for several hours ahead of time, so keep that in mind, otherwise, they’ll take forever to cook! This salad is delicious warm or cold and was great as a side dish for Thanksgiving.



1 C wheat berries

1 2″ cinnamon stick

1/4 tsp salt

3 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1/4″ dice

1 heaping cup thinly sliced dried apricots

1/2 C toasted slivered almonds

6 Tbs chopped cilantro


3 Tbs apple cider vinegar

3 Tbs olive oil

1 Tbs lemon juice

1 tsp Dijon mustard

1 tsp maple syrup

1/4 tsp cinnamon


Soak the wheat berries and cinnamon stick in 3 cups of water for 8 hours or overnight. I didn’t have any cinnamon sticks, so I added a dash or two of cinnamon later on. Transfer the wheat berries and water to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. (This is where I added the cinnamon).

Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for an hour. Drain any leftover liquid and remove cinnamon stick. In a small saucepan, blanch the carrots, then drain. Toss the carrots with the wheat berries, apricots, almonds, and cilantro.

For the dressing, blend all of the ingredients until creamy and season with salt and pepper. Stir into the salad, cover, and chill for about an hour. Enjoy!

Lime and Veggie Fajitas

These colorful fajitas are so quick and easy to make. If you’re like me and tired of the same old fajita seasoning packets, I think you’ll love this change up.


1 Tbs olive oil (I used chipotle-flavored)
1 large yellow bell pepper, sliced
1 large red bell pepper, sliced
2 C mushrooms, sliced
1 large onion, sliced
1 C fresh cilantro, chopped
Flour tortillas


1/2 C lime juice
1 tsp black pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/8 tsp cumin


Combine the seasoning ingredients and set aside.

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet. Add the onions and cook 5-7 minutes, or until slightly tender.

Add the bell peppers and cook another 12-15 minutes, or until they are softened.

Stir in the mushrooms. These will cook fast, about 3-4 minutes.

Stir in the cilantro and lime juice mixture and combine thoroughly. Cook until the sauce is heated through.

Scoop onto the tortillas and if you’d like, add some Daiya cheese and/or Tofutti sour cream. Enjoy!

Chili Stew

The weather has been a bit cold and windy these days, and last night was no exception. On nights like that, a hearty soup or stew hits the spot. I threw in tons of different things in this chili and I think this one is my favorite version so far. It’s also great to scoop onto tortilla chips. I had three avocados I planned on dicing up to top the chili, but each one was bad! Total bummer. Crash Test Vegetarian used olives and roasted red peppers in her chili recipe, so I owe her a big thanks for the idea!


1 large onion, diced

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 Tbs olive oil

2 medium potatoes, peeled and diced (1/2 C of barley is a good substitute)

1 can black beans, drained and rinsed

1 28-oz can diced tomatoes, drained

4 C low-sodium vegetable broth

2 C water

1 6-oz can black olives, sliced

1 small can tomato paste

3 jarred roasted red peppers, diced

1/8 C lime juice

2-3 Tbs Ancho chili powder

1-1/2 Tbs cumin

1 tsp oregano

Salt and pepper, to taste

4-5 green onions, sliced

Fresh cilantro, chopped

Optional: Daiya cheese, diced avocado, Tofutti sour cream


Heat the olive oil and garlic in a large soup pot. Add the onion and cook for 7-8 minutes, or until tender. Add the broth, water, potatoes, tomatoes, black beans, and tomato paste. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cook until the potatoes are slightly tender, about 20 minutes. Add the seasonings, roasted red peppers, olives, and lime juice. Simmer another 15-20 minutes and stir in the lime juice. Sprinkle servings with green onion, cilantro, cheese, and sour cream, if desired. Enjoy!

Easy Tostadas

This is one of those no-brainer meals that when you need something quick and easy, these fit the bill. The Seventh Grader, always helpful when it comes to cooking (but not cleaning) makes this even easier to throw together.


1 bag Boca crumbles

1 can refried beans

1/2 large onion, diced

1 Tbs olive oil

1 pkg taco seasoning

8-12 tostada shells

All the fixins’: Tofutti sour cream, lettuce, tomato, avocado, fresh cilantro, Daiya cheese, and salsa


Preheat oven to 350. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil. Cook the onion and cook 3-5 minutes. Add the Boca crumbles and cook until heated through. Add the can of refries and combine well. In a small cup, prepare the seasoning mix according to the package instructions and stir into the bean/Boca mixture. Place the tostada shells on a baking sheet and warm for 3-5 minutes. Layer on some of the bean mixture along with your favorite toppings. Enjoy!

Amazing Avocado Salsa

Beware: This feeds a crowd . . . and . . . you can easily fill up on this salsa before dinner because it’s so delicious! It’s packed full of flavor and would be ideal for a summer get together. (yes, it’s December, but avocados were on sale). The recipe is from All Recipes, but I just made a couple of changes such as using red onion instead of yellow and adding 1 cup of fresh cilantro. Dig in!


1 (16 ounce) package frozen corn kernels, thawed

2 (2.25 ounce) cans sliced ripe olives, drained

1 red bell pepper, chopped

1 small red onion, chopped

5 cloves garlic, minced

1/3 cup olive oil

1/4 cup lemon juice

3 tablespoons cider vinegar

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

1 C fresh cilantro, chopped

4 avocados – peeled, pitted and diced


In a large bowl, mix corn, olives, red bell pepper, onion, and cilantro. In a small bowl, mix garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, cider vinegar, oregano, salt and pepper.

Pour into the corn mixture and toss to coat. Cover and chill in the refrigerator 8 hours, or overnight. (I didn’t have time to let it sit that long. I chilled it for about 4 hours). Stir avocados into the mixture before serving with tortilla chips or toasted baguette slices. Enjoy!

Mango and Avocado Spring Rolls

I’ve been wanting to make this type of spring roll for a while—I’ve seen recipes for then in various different places, but all I knew is that I had a very ripe avocado and a very ripe mango that needed to be used. These were delicious! The only thing I had trouble with, was coming up with a dipping sauce. Traditional peanut sauce just didn’t seem right for these. They’re good on their own, but I think a sauce would be nice. Any ideas?


14-16 sheets rice paper

8-oz rice noodles

1-2 avocados, sliced thin

1 mango, sliced thin

1 medium cucumber, cut into matchsticks

1 C fresh cilantro

Salt and pepper, to taste


Have everything chopped and ready to go. While chopping, cook the noodles according to package instructions, which is only a few minutes.

Fill a pie plate with warm water. I find it best to set it next to the left of my large wooden cutting board (where I’ll be assembling the rolls). Place a sheet of rice of paper into the water and let it soften for about 45 seconds. Carefully pull it out, let it drip any excess water and then lay it out onto the cutting board. Place another sheet in the water so that it’s ready when you need another one. Start with a handful of rice noodles. They can be hard to tear apart, so I found that having some kitchen scissors on hand is helpful. Place into the middle of the rice paper. Add a couple slices of avocado, mango, and cucumber and top with some cilantro and salt and pepper.

Fold in the sides first, then bring up the bottom and roll up. Transfer to a plate. They’re not that difficult to make as long as your work area is set up before hand. Enjoy!

Tacos with Pear Cilantro Slaw

I can’t make anything with cilantro in it and not think of my friend, Kerrie. She often checks out my recipes, but when one of them has cilantro in it, she’s very upfront with me about her dislike for the herb. Even just talking about it with her induces her gag reflex. I on the other hand, love it and so I apologize, Kerrie, that the last 2 recipes I’ve posted have had a cup of *gag* cilantro in them! I guarantee however, you’d like these tacos sans your least favorite herb . . . :) The recipe is from VegNews and I made some minor alterations. For one, I couldn’t find Korean red pepper and I left off the avocados (much to my dismay) because they were priced at $1.99 each! They still turned out delish—especially with that cilantro!


For the tofu:

6 garlic cloves, crushed (I used minced)

1/4 C soy sauce (or tamari)

2 rounded Tbs brown sugar

1 Tbs sesame seeds

1 Tbs peanut oil or vegetable oil (I used olive oil)

2 tsp tomato paste (I froze the rest)

1-1/2 tsp toasted sesame oil

1/2 tsp Korean red pepper (I used regular red pepper)

2 green onions, finely chopped

1 14-oz pkg. extra firm tofu, drained, pressed and cut into 8 slices

For the Pear Cilantro Slaw:

1 large Asian pear

2-1/2 C finely shredded cabbage

1 C chopped cilantro

1-2 jalapeno peppers, roasted and finely chopped (I used 1 rounded Tbs of canned)

2 green onions, finely chopped

3 Tbs lime juice

1 Tbs agave

1/2 tsp salt

The rest:

8 tortillas

8 leaves of green lettuce

2 avocados, sliced

(Optional): mung, soybean, or radish sprouts, hot sauce. I added a shredded carrot.

I also decided to make a sour cream dressing: 1/2 C Tofutti sour cream mixed with some lime juice, garlic salt, and cumin—to taste.


For the tofu, whisk together the soy sauce, garlic, brown sugar, sesame seeds, peanut oil (or other oil), tomato paste, sesame oil, red pepper powder, and green onions.

I used an 8″x8″ baking dish, poured some marinade in it, placed the tofu on top, then layered on the rest of the marinade. Spread it around evenly.

The recipe says to marinate for 20 minutes, but since I had some time earlier in the afternoon, I made it then and stuck it in the fridge—tightly covered.

To make the slaw, quarter the pear, remove the core and grate it, using the largest holes on a box grater. Squeeze the pear shreds of excess liquid. Place in a large bowl and add the other slaw ingredients; combine well.

Over medium-high heat, heat a cast iron, or other skillet and spray with cooking spray. Cook the tofu for about 3 minutes per side, or until brown along the edges.  The recipe didn’t specify whether or not to keep the marinade, so I just added it with the tofu.

I then sliced each tofu slab into 3 pieces to make it easier to eat in a taco.

Serve in a warmed tortilla with the lettuce leaf, carrot (and any other optional ingredient), slaw, and tofu. I also drizzle on some of my sour cream sauce. So delicious!! Enjoy!

Sweet Potato, Kale & Black Bean Fajitas

I’mmmm baaaacckkk! And boy, does it feel good. I had an amazing conference experience that you can read about at Folsom’s 93 and then a fabulous respite up in the mountains where we got to spend time with some great friends and just relax. It was the perfect opportunity to try out a new recipe from my friend at Tried and Tasted Recipes and it was absolutely delicious! I will be making this again and again. It makes quite a bit, as we fed about 8 and still had leftovers.


3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided

1 large or 2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped into 1/4 inch cubes (I used 2)

2 red bell peppers, diced

1 large red onion, diced

10 cloves garlic, minced, divided

1 large bunch of kale, rinsed and roughly chopped

1 can black beans, rinsed and drained (I used 1-1/2 cans)

2 tsp ground cumin, divided (I recommend more)

1 tsp ancho chili powder (again, I suggest adding more)

Freshly ground salt and pepper

8 tortillas

Optional ingredients: Cilantro, Tofutti sour cream, vegan shredded cheddar or pepper jack cheeze, guacamole


In a large saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil and add 6 cloves of minced garlic; saute 5 minutes. Add the potatoes and peppers, and saute another 5 minutes. Stir in 1/2 tsp of the cumin and the ancho chili powder. Turn to medium heat and cook for 10 minutes, then season with salt and pepper.

In a smaller saucepan, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil and garlic. Add the beans and kale; stir once and cover for 2-3 minutes, or until the kale has cooked down. Season with the rest of the cumin and more salt and pepper.

Serve a scoop or two of each mixture onto warmed flour tortillas with Tofutti sour cream, cilantro, cheeze, and guacamole. You won’t be disappointed—they are outstanding!

Pineapple Salsa

Vegan MoFo, Day 26

Happy Black Friday. As for me, I’m staying far away from the maddening crowds; safe at home.

My mom made this salsa—the recipe is actually from a friend and it won first place in a recent salsa contest. One bite and you’ll see why!


1 can pineapple rings, drained

1 medium red onion

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/3 of a bunch of fresh cilantro, chopped fine

1 chili pepper of choice, such as an anaheim


Grill the pineapple rings about 5 minutes on each side. Chop up and combine with the other ingredients. So easy! Serve with tortilla chips and enjoy.

Chipotle-Lime Pasta with a Cream Sauce and Avocado

Vegan MoFo, Day 21

I picked up some Pappardelle’s Whole Wheat Chipotle Lime pasta and since it has a bit of kick, I figured a cream sauce would be ideal to go with it. I also had an avocado on-the-verge of being tossed, so it all came together beautifully!


8-oz Chipotle Lime pasta

2 tsp garlic, minced

2 Tbs Earth Balance margarine

2 Tbs flour

1 C almond milk

2 Tbs Vegan Parmesan cheese

1 tsp lime juice, plus a little more for thinning, if needed

1/2 C Tofutti sour cream

2 green onions, sliced (white and green parts)

1/3 C fresh cilantro, chopped

5-6 mushrooms, diced

1 avocado, diced


Cook pasta 10-12 minutes, or until al dente. Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, heat margarine and garlic. Whisk in the flour. Once the flour is thoroughly combined, whisk in the almond milk, then the sour cream and Parmesan. Stir in the lime juice, mushrooms, cilantro, and green onions. Add more lime juice, if needed.

Ladle the sauce over single servings of pasta and top with the diced avocado. Enjoy!



Cheddar and Green Chili Bread with Cream Cheeze Spread

Vegan MoFo, Day 7

I love making bread and sometimes I’m in the mood to put the time and effort into kneading, rising, kneading, rising it, but there are days I just can’t be bothered with that. And today, I had a weird inclination to combine green chilies and cheeze and this quick, simple bread magically appeared in my oven. It was that easy. Great served with veggie chili!



3 C flour

2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

1 Tbs dried minced onion

4-oz can diced green chilies

2 Tbs olive oil

1-1/4 C almond milk

1-1/2 C vegan cheddar, shredded (or vegan pepper jack cheeze)


4-oz Tofutti cream cheese

1 Tbs fresh cilantro, minced

1/8 tsp garlic salt

1/2 tsp lime juice


Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease a 9″ loaf pan. In a food processor, combine flour, baking powder, minced onion, and salt. Add the cheese and chilies. While the machine is running, add the almond milk and oil. Combine thoroughly and then transfer to the loaf pan. Use a spatula to even it out.

Bake 40 minutes. Insert a toothpick or knife in the center to assure it’s done. It smells wonderful as it bakes!  To make the spread, combine all ingredients well. Spread some of the cream cheeze mixture onto a warm slice of bread—it’ll melt in your mouth!


Latin-Inspired Coleslaw

Vegan MoFo, Day 3

I have become enamored with coleslaw this year. I guess it’s because we’ve received so much cabbage from our CSA, and before, I never really gave cabbage that much thought. I’ve made regular coleslaw and Asian coleslaw, so of course, it was only natural to make a Mexican-style one. This is great on its own, or wrapped in a tortilla.


1 large head of cabbage, shredded

1/2 C carrot, shredded

1 large red bell pepper, sliced thin

1 C fresh cilantro, slightly chopped

3 large green onion, chopped (both white and green parts)

1 Tbs pimento, diced

1/2 C Tofutti sour cream

1/2 C Vegenaise

1 Tbs almond milk

1 tsp lime juice

1/2 tsp liquid smoke

1/4 tsp Ancho chili powder

1 tsp cumin

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 C vegan cheddar shredded (or vegan pepper jack for an added kick)


In a large bowl, combine cabbage, bell pepper, carrot, cilantro, and green onions. In a small bowl, combine sour cream, Vegenaise, almond milk, lime juice, liquid smoke, pimento, chili powder, cumin, and salt. Add the sour cream mixture to the cabbage mixture and combine thoroughly. Stir in cheeze. Enjoy!

Vegetable Soft Tacos/Fajitas

Between school, tae kwon do practice, errands,  and well . . . life, I love meals that make themselves. Ok, well,  they don’t exactly make themselves, but pretty close.  I had lots of veggies to use up, so fajitas/tacos were perfect. I added lime juice and cilantro for a flavorful combination. I served them with some warmed refried beans topped with vegan cheese for some protein.


1 small summer squash, cut into 2″ pieces

1 small zucchini, cut into 2″ pieces

1/2 large onion, cut into 2″ pieces

1 red bell pepper, cut into 2″ pieces

1-2 Tbs olive oil

1 avocado, sliced

1-oz pkg fajita seasoning

1/8 C water

1/8 C lime juice

1 C fresh cilantro, chopped


Vegan cheddar, shredded

Tofutti sour cream

Flour tortillas, warmed


In a large skillet heat the olive oil. Add the squash, zucchini, bell pepper, and onion.

Saute covered for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened. Combine the fajita mix with the water and lime juice. Add to the vegetable mixture and combine well. Stir in the cilantro.

On a warm tortilla, layer on some sour cream, veggies, avocado, salsa, and cheese. Enjoy!

Zucchini-Tofu Scramble with Roasted Red Peppers

I love tofu scrambles—as you have probably already gathered, but they’re so easy to change up and are perfect for those times when you need to clean out the produce drawer of on-the-verge-veggies. You can pile it into a wrap or a toasted English muffin, or just eat it as it is. I had half a package of tofu just waiting for me to use it, so it was easy to figure out what to make. A great protein-packed breakfast to start the day.


7-8oz tofu, extra firm, drained and pressed

1 small zucchini, sliced, then quartered

1 jarred roasted red pepper, diced

1/3 C salsa

3 green onions, sliced

1/3 C fresh cilantro, chopped

1/3-1/2 C Vegan cheese, shredded (any kind you like: cheddar, pepper jack, Monterrey Jack, etc)

1 avocado, diced

1/2 tsp turmeric

1/2 tsp cumin

A few dashes cayenne pepper

Salt and pepper, to taste

Olive oil


Heat 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil in a medium skillet. Add zucchini and saute for about 5 minutes. Add the roasted red pepper and saute another 5 minutes. In a small bowl, break up the tofu to resemble scrambled eggs. Add turmeric, cumin, and cayenne; stir to combine. Add tofu and green onions; combine well with the veggies. Saute for about 4 minutes and then stir in the salsa, cilantro, and cheese. Finish off with salt and pepper and then top individual servings with some avocado. Enjoy!

Vegan Enchiladas

These were yummy and satisfying! I used stir-fry seitan, but you can use sliced portobello mushrooms, or Boca Meatless Crumbles. To clear out the sinuses, puree some chilies in adobo sauce (comes in a 7-oz can) and mix in with the meat-of-choice. I used about 6 tablespoons and the Husband and Fifth Grader found it a little too fork-curling hot, so next time, I’ll use only 1-2 tablespoons–just depends on what you like.


16-oz seitan, sliced portobellos, or Boca Meatless Ground Crumbles

1/2 large onion, chopped

12 small  flour or corn tortillas

2-1/2 C mix of vegan Monterey Jack cheese and vegan Pepper Jack Cheese, shredded

Tofutti sour cream

1-2 avocados, diced

Fresh cilantro leaves

1 recipe enchiladas sauce:

3 Tbs olive oil

1 Tbs flour

1/4 C chili powder

2 C vegetable broth

1 6-oz can tomato paste

1/2 tsp cumin

1 tsp oregano

1 pkg. enchiladas spices or recipe (below):

1 Tbs chili powder

2 tsp onion powder

1 tsp cumin

1 paprika

1 tsp oregano

1 tsp sugar

1/2 tsp salt


Start with the enchiladas sauce: Heat oil in a saucepan, stir in flour, then chili powder (if you need to make your own chili powder, combine 3 Tbs paprika, 1 Tbs cumin, 2 T oregano, 1 tsp cayenne, and 1/2 tsp garlic salt). Add vegetable broth, tomato paste, cumin and oregano. Simmer 15 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375. Sautee meat-of-choice with some olive oil until browned. Whether you use seitan, portobellos or ground crumbles, they only take about 10 minutes. Stir in spices. Add onion last couple of minutes of sauteeing.

Spread about a 1/2 cup of the sauce on the bottom of a 15″ baking pan. Fill each tortilla with about 3 tablespoons of meat mixture and 1-2 Tbs of cheese. Be sure to save about 3/4 cup to 1 cup of cheese to spread on the top. Fold each tortilla and place into the pan. Top with the rest of the enchilada sauce and cheese. Cover with foil and bake 15 minutes. Uncover and bake another 5 minutes.

Serve hot and top with a dollop of Tofutti sour cream, avocados and cilantro.


Pita Quesadillas with Cilantro Hummus

I was thumbing through the latest issue of Vegetarian Times and when I saw this recipe, I decided right then and there to try these. I happened to have all the ingredients, even adding some Vegan Gourmet Monterey Jack cheese and between that, the roasted red peppers and cilantro, it made a delicious, quick and easy lunch.



1/2 C cilantro leaves

2 cloves garlic, peeled (I used minced)

1-1/2 C cooked chickpeas (or 1 15oz can, rinsed and drained)

2 Tbs lime juice

2 Tbs olive oil


4 7″ whole-wheat pitas, split crosswise

4 jarred roasted red peppers, drained and sliced into strips

1-1/2 C baby spinach leaves

Optional: Vegan Gourmet Monterey Jack, shredded (I did little slices, but shredding it would have been better)


Preheat oven to 350. To make hummus: Process cilantro leaves and garlic in food processor until chopped. (I added the garlic later since it was already minced). Add the chickpeas, lime juice, oil, and 1/4 C water; puree 3 minutes, or until creamy.

To make the quesadillas: Place 4 pitas halves on baking sheet. Spread each with 1/2 C hummus. Top with peppers, spinach, cheese (if using) and remaining pita halves. Bake 10 mins, serve and enjoy!

Seitan* Tostadas with Avocado Dressing

Well…the (*) indicates that seitan may not be the right choice for these tostadas–the original recipe called for chicken so I figured chicken-style seitan would be the ideal substitute. I guess I can’t always be a vegan-recipe-master. Next time, I will try refries with Boca brand “beef” crumbles. But I wanted to share the recipe for the Avocado Dressing that is fantastic! It would go great with tacos, burritos, or as a salsa.


Avocado Dressing:

6 Tbs vegetable oil

4 Tbs cider vinegar

4 tsp minced pickled jalapeno peppers

1 tsp sugar

1 tsp salt

2 avocados, peeled, pitted and diced

2 tomatoes, chopped

1/3 C cilantro, chopped (I added, but optional)

The Rest:

I recommend trying 1 can refried beans with 1 bag Boca Ground Crumbles or possibly using a taco seasoning mix with the seitan.

1 pkg, 10-count tostada shells

Vegan cheddar, shredded

Tofutti sour cream

Lettuce, chopped


For the dressing: Combine all ingredients, cover and refrigerate until ready to use (top “meat” with it).

Recipe source: Creme de Colorado Cookbook

Seitan Fajitas

I love that there is a tasty alternative to meat! Even my husband went so far as to say that he liked these better than chicken. This…coming from a man who  absolutely loves chicken!  Maybe it’s because seitan really, truely has the same texture and similar flavor to meat, particularly chicken, but none of the saturated fat, hormones and antibiotics. These were super easy to make and I served them with a scoop of refries with vegan cheddar melted on top. Talk about a yummy, protein-packed meal!


2 pkgs seitan, break up or slice into pieces (I like Westsoy brand)
1 Tbs olive oil
1/2 large red onion, sliced
1 large red bell pepper, sliced into thin strips
3 cloves minced garlic
1 packet fajita mix + 1/2-3/4 C water
Tofutti sour cream
Vegan cheese, shredded, cheddar flavor
cilantro, chopped
sliced avocado (optional)
Flour tortillas (I like Whole Foods brand–organic and small. They come in whole wheat, fat free and Homestyle (white). I like the taste and that they are the perfect size. Small, so I don’t feel like I have to load up a large tortilla. I can always make 2 if I want more).


Saute onions and garlic in olive oil until tender, 3-5 mins. Add seitan and saute for 10-12 mins. Combine the fajita mix with the water and add to the pan. Coat veggies and seitan and cook for 2 mins on med-high heat. Reduce heat to low and cover for about 3 mins.

I like to spread a Tbs or so of Tofutti sour cream on a warmed tortilla, then add a bit of cilantro, then seitan mixture and top with vegan cheese and salsa. If I have avocado, I’ll add 1-2 slices on top. Roll up and enjoy!

Classic Guacamole

The recipe is actually my sister-in-law’s and perhaps it’s just how most guacs are made, but this recipe is always a hit. The ingredients are kind of approximate–don’t get too heavy-handed with them right away–you can always add more flavor to taste. Keep in mind that most tortilla chips are salted, so I wouldn’t go too crazy with the garlic salt.


6-7 ripe avocados
2 Tbs lime juice
1/2 C salsa
1/2-1 tsp garlic salt
1/2 C fresh cilantro, chopped (A total must)!


Mash the avocados with one of these (pastry blender)…it works the best, especially if the avocados aren’t quite ripe enough.

Add the lime juice, garlic salt and salsa, mix well. Taste to adjust seasoning. I then gently stir in the cilantro and serve with tortilla chips! Always a crowd-pleaser…enjoy!
NOTE: To keep it from browning, cover with plastic wrap, but mold the plastic wrap to the top of the dip so that air will not get to it.

Soyrizo Tacos

Soyrizo is such a perfect alternative to meat and these tacos are so satisfying and delicious. Combined with fresh ingredients, vegans and non vegans alike will love them!


1 Tbs olive oil
8 oz vegan chorizo or taco crumbles (found in the tempe and tofu section)
4-6 corn shells (or soft, if you prefer)
1/2 C diced onion
1/2 C chopped tomatoes
1 C tofu sour cream (Tofutti brand)
2/3 C shredded vegan cheese
Prepared salsa
I added diced avocado and chopped fresh cilantro


Heat the olive oil in a skillet over med-high heat (I added the onions at this time and cooked until softened). Add the chorizo or taco crumbles and cook, stirring until heated through, 3-4 mins.

Arrange onions (if you want more), lettuce, tomatoes, salsa, sour cream, cheese, avocado, salsa and cilantro in bowls. Assemble as you want! Enjoy!