Some may think that living a vegan lifestyle is challenging. After all, not only are you eating lots of fruit and vegetables but they aren’t cooked either! And what about cheese and other dairy products? How do you have cheesy potatoes or broccoli when you can’t have cheese?

Vegan eating is interesting and fun. Check out the recipes below and be prepared to titillate your taste buds!

Noodles with Diablo Sauce

While making the sauce, be careful with the chilli peppers. You can also more or less lime juice or maple syrup as you find satisfying.

2 cups canned crushed tomatoes
3 large garlic cloves, chopped
3 Tbs. ginger juice from a 3-inch piece of fresh ginger
(Finely grate the ginger, wrap in a thin cloth, and then squeeze the juice through the cloth into a cup).
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
2 Tbs. Maple syrup
Juice of 1 small lime
1/2 cup sesame oil
1/4 tsp. crushed red chilli pepper
3 Cups chopped spinach
3 Cups chopped beet greens
1 Tbs. olive oil
1/2 red onion, chopped
12 ounces soba noodles

In a food processor, blend the tomatoes, garlic, ginger juice, parsley, maple syrup, lime juice, and sesame oil together until smooth. Add a pinch of the red hot chilli pepper. Blend and taste.

Wash the greens. Heat the olive oil in a large pan, add the onion, and cook over high heat for 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the greens and cook for 5 minutes, until tender.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil, add oil, and cook noodles until al dente (about 5 minutes).

Remove from heat and drain. Place noodles on individual serving plates. Spoon some sauce on the noodles, place greens on top, and spoon a topping of sauce on the greens. The sauce will warm up from the heat of the greens and noodles.

Roasted Pumpkin and Vegetables

This recipe uses whatever vegetables you have in the fridge or enjoy. Just be aware of their relative cooking time so they may be added at the appropriate intervals.

Squash cut into 1-inch cubes
Brussel Sprouts

Place the squash or pumpkin in an oiled baking dish and sprinkle with seasonings you prefer (such as thyme or rosemary). Lightly mist with olive oil. Place in a hot oven (425F) and roast for 15 minutes.

Remove, stir and add any other quicker cooking vegetables. Once broiled, remove and place in a large serving bowl; season with salt, pepper and a bit of balsamic vinegar – ENJOY!


Mediterranean Vegetable Stew

2 tablespoons water
3 shallots, chopped
1 large carrot, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced into half-moons
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 large fennel bulb, stalks discarded, diced
1 lb. small red potatoes, quartered
1 small red bell pepper, seeded and cut into 1" pieces
1 nine-ounce pkg frozen artichoke hearts, thawed
1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes, drained
1 15.5-ounce can of chickpeas, drained & rinsed
1/3 cup white wine
1& 1/2 cups vegetable stock
1 teaspn minced fresh thyme leaves, or 1/4 teaspn dried
1 teaspn minced fresh oregano leaves, or 1/4 teaspn dried
1 large bay leaf
salt and freshly ground black pepper

Heat the 2 tbsp. water in a medium-sized skillet over medium heat. Add the shallots and carrot, cover, and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds.

Transfer the cooked vegetable mixture to a 4-6 quart crockpot. Add the fennel, potatoes, bell pepper, artichoke hearts, tomatoes, chickpeas, wine, stock, dried thyme and oregano (if using), and bay leaf; season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours.

If using fresh herbs, add them a few minutes before the end of the cooking time. Remove and discard the bay leaf before serving.

No-Roll Enchiladas

1 large bell pepper (red or green)
1 large onion
1 can refried beans
1 can enchilada sauce
1 cup of salsa
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
cooking spray
optional: 1 medium tomato
Preheat the oven to 350 (F). Dice the onion, pepper, and tomato.

Spray the bottom of a casserole dish with cooking spray or oil and lay down a tortilla (if your tortillas are smaller than your casserole, you can layer them -- but be sure the bottom of the dish is covered).

Spread a layer of refried beans on the top of the tortilla -- you may want to heat the beans first to make them spread more easily.

Pour half of the salsa and half of the onions over the beans. Put another tortilla on top of this layer. Layer the black beans, green pepper, tomato (if using), and the rest of the salsa and onion on top of the tortilla.

Put another tortilla on the top (your casserole should be pretty full by now). Pour the can of enchilada sauce over the whole thing and bake, covered, for about 35-45 minutes or until it's hot and bubbly all the way through. Serve with vegan sour cream or all by itself.


Vegetable Casserole

1 medium potato, peeled and coarsely diced
½ medium carrot, scraped and thickly sliced
½ medium onion, peeled and coarsely diced
1 cup of water
1 tsp salt
16 oz chopped broccoli
4 oz firm tofu, crumbled
½ cup nutritional yeast
1 Tbs lemon juice
pinch garlic granules
1 cup uncooked instant brown rice
10 oz can sliced mushrooms, drained
3/4 cup water

Preheat oven to 350° F. In a small saucepan, bring potato, carrot, onion, 1 cup water and salt to a boil over medium-high heat.

Lower heat to medium, cover and simmer until potato and carrot are tender, about 10 mins.

When potato mixture has finished simmering, pour into a blender and add tofu, yeast, lemon juice and garlic. Blend until very smooth and creamy.

Pour into a shallow, greased, 1½ to 2-quart casserole. Add broccoli, rice, mushrooms and 3/4 cup water. Stir well and smooth top of casserole.
Bake for 40 mins, until golden and bubbling.

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