Tofu Tikki Masala

Stop whatever you’re doing and run to the kitchen. You need this tofu tikka masala in your life. Right. This. Second!!! The recipe is full of different spices and flavors and everything that tikka masala should be. Make sure you plan ahead because the tofu needs to marinate for an hour in addition to being pressed, so for maximum time efficiency do some of the foot-work in the morning or the night before. Don’t shy away from making this recipe because you’re unsure of how your little one will handle the spices in this dish either, my little girl totally devoured this one!! Add a side of white rice and naan bread and you’re good to go. All in all, there is a little bit more preparation time required for this recipe compared to some others I’ve posted, but it’s so worth it, I know you guys will agree!!

Prep time: 1 hr 20 min      Cook time: 30 min       Serves: 4-6

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Ingredients

marinade

  • 14 oz extra firm tofu
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • 6 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp minced ginger
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp garam masala
  • 2 tsp paprika

sauce

  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 tbsp minced garlic
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp garam masala
  • 2 tsp turmeric
  • 2 tsp cilantro
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tbsp minced ginger
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 12 oz crushed tomatoes
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup organic half and half (or use dairy-free milk of choice to make meal vegan)
  • *optional* rice and naan bread to serve

Instructions

  • Remove tofu from package and press between 2 heavy objects for at least 20 min. While tofu is being pressed, being to prepare the marinade
  • Combine yogurt and all ingredients for the marinade. Cut tofu into small bite sized squares then add tofu into marinade. Toss tofu in marinade until all pieces are evenly coated. Place covered in refrigerator and let marinate at least 1 hour
  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place marinated tofu onto bamboo skewers then place over a parchment paper lined baking tray. Make sure there is adequate space underneath to help distribute heat evenly
  • Bake 15 minutes or until tofu edges are slightly browned. While tofu is in the oven, prepare the sauce
  • Heat oil in large pot over medium heat. Add in garlic, onion, and ginger and cook until tender but not browned. Add the spices stirring constantly then add tomato paste
  • Add crushed tomatoes, water and half and half then bring to a boil Cook for 5 minutes then reduce heat slightly and add tofu in. Cook about 2 minutes then serve

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Vegetable Tempura

Vegetable tempura makes my heart smile. Vegetable tempura that can be cooked and on my plate in 15 minutes or less? Now that makes my heart sing, ‘ceeeelebrate good times, come on!’ This tastes just like the vegetable tempura I order religiously every time I visit my favorite sushi restaurant but I get to enjoy it from the comfort of my couch. This is a recipe you can really have fun with. For this recipe I used carrots, broccoli and avocado but some other options would be radishes, sweet potato and button mushrooms-but you can really add in anything you want to eat! This vegetable tempura is so quick and simple to make you can now have amazing, restaurant quality tempura at the snap of your fingers!!! And by having dinner cooked in 15 minutes, you’ll have lots of extra time for you!!

Prep time: 5 min       Cook time: 10 min     Serves: 4

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup vegetable oil for frying

batter

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup sparkling water

dipping sauce

  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp dried chili flakes
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh cilantro

Instructions

  • Heat the oil over high heat then begin to prepare vegetables
  • Wash and peel vegetables, slice away tops and ends of baby carrots, trim the ends of the broccoli, etc.
  • In large bowl, combine all batter ingredients and whisk together until just smooth. Dip in the vegetables and ensure they are evenly coated then shake off excess batter
  • Using a slotted spoon, add several vegetables at a time into the oil. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Be careful not to overfill oil with vegetables, they will stick together. When the batter has puffed up, carefully remove vegetables to a paper towel to absorb excess oil. Repeat until all vegetables are cooked and placed onto paper towel.
  • In the meantime, make dipping sauce. Combine all sauce ingredients and whisk until combined. Serve tempura immediately with individual bowls of dipping sauce

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Butternut Squash and Sage Macaroni

Are you guys ready for another amazing 15 minute dinner recipe?!? I don’t think you’re ready….. Ok, here it is; butternut squash and sage mac n’ cheese. Mac n’ cheese is the epitome of comfort food and this home cooked version makes it that much more comforting. Butternut squash makes an awesome vegan ‘cheese’ sauce plus it’s high in antioxidants, fiber and potassium making this the healthiest mac n’ cheese out there!! The butternut squash sauce is so good, you’ll want to drink it like a smoothie…hey, feel free, I won’t judge ya!!!!

Prep time: 5 min          Cook time: 15 min       Serves: 4

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Ingredients

  • 1 small butternut squash
  • 7 oz pasta
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion finely chopped
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 3/4 cup vegetable stock
  • 2 tsp dried sage
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper

Instructions

  • Bring large saucepan of water to a boil. Carefully add the squash and cook over medium heat for 11 minutes until very soft. Drain and set aside
  • Place the pasta into boiling water and cook for 10 minutes until al dente. Drain and keep warm
  • Heat the oil in a frying pan and add diced onion and garlic. Sprinkle in the dried sage and cook over medium heat for 3 minutes until softened.
  • Spoon the contents of frying pan into food processor along with the butternut squash. Pour in vegetable stock and blend on high until completely smooth
  • Pour sauce over pasta and stir to mix completely. Season with salt and pepper

Baked Sweet Potatoes with Soy Yoghurt, Pomegranate, and Toasted Walnuts

Everyone loves an oven-baked sweet potato. This sweet potato has a savory, sweet taste that is a true home comfort with an extra helping of vitamin A and vitamin C. This recipe only takes about 15 minutes thanks to the handy-dandy microwave. This was the first time I’ve tried these toppings on a sweet potato and I will never go back!! The bittersweet pomegranate compliments the not too sweet yoghurt just perfectly making this meal capable of performing for breakfast, lunch and dinner. This is perfect for busy weeknights since there is virtually no lengthy prep time required! I know you guys will enjoy this just as much as I did!

Prep time: 5 min        Cook time: 10 min       Serves: 3

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Ingredients

  • 2 large sweet potatoes
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp walnuts
  • 1 pomegranate
  • 4 tbsp unsweetened soy yoghurt
  • pinch of sea salt

Instructions

  • Thoroughly wash then dry the sweet potatoes. Brush the skins with the olive oil then cook in the microwave for 10 minutes, until a fork can pierce the insides effortlessly
  • While the sweet potatoes are cooking, add walnuts to dry pan and roast over medium heat for 3-4 minutes, then set aside
  • Slice pomegranate and remove seeds
  • Remove cooked sweet potatoes from microwave and slice down the center. Generously spoon in the yoghurt, toss the toasted walnuts and pomegranate seeds over top. Season with sea salt and serve

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VEGAN Veggie ‘Meat’Loaf

Vegetarians, rejoice!!! This is seriously better than any meatloaf out there!! And so much better for you, duh! This bad boy is packed with carrots, celery, onion and lots of healthy grains with flax egg to bind the loaf. It can actually be extra quick put this together if you use instant quinoa which they sell in cute little microwave-safe cups (I know, don’t judge me) but hey, sometimes us moms could use a break, even if it’s just 10 minutes, am I right???!!!! The ketchup and maple syrup glaze is perfect, and it really pulls the whole dish together. The lentils bring this dish the perfect nutty and earthy flavors along with a high nutritional value anyone can benefit from, including your toddler!

On another note, tomorrow is Friday and I am just so freakin’ happy! You know that song by Nelly, ‘it’s the freakin’ weekend, baby I’m gonna have my some fun!’ Yep, I’m gonna have fun…and by fun I mean sleeping until 7:30 am and not changing out of my pajamas. Once again, no shame 🙂

Prep time: 10 min     Cook time: 1 hr      Serves: 4

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Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp flax meal
  • 6 tbsp water
  • olive oil to taste
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 stalk celery diced
  • 1/2 cup onion diced
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 red bell pepper diced
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1 tbsp dried parsley
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire (vegan)
  • 2 cups lentils cooked
  • 3/4 cup brown rice cooked
  • 3/4 cup quick-cook oats
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 1 tsp maple syrup

Instructions

  • To make the flax egg combine the flax meal with the water in a small bowl and mix well. Set aside for 10 minutes
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • In large saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Once shimmering, add in carrots and celery. After 2-3 minutes, add in onions and mushrooms. Cook another 3-4 minutes
  • Add another drizzle of olive oil then add garlic, bell pepper, and tomato paste. Cook 2 more minutes then add salt, pepper, parsley, and thyme and cook until fragrant
  • Add the soy sauce and Worcestershire sauce and cook for 2 more minutes until the vegetables are tender. Remove from heat
  • In food processor, add the lentils, brown rice, oats, flax eggs, and sautéed vegetables. Pulse 10-12 times until the mixture is slightly chunky
  • Transfer the mixture to a parchment lined loaf pan and smooth the top with a spatula. To make the glaze, combine ketchup and maple syrup in small bowl. Brush half on top of load, reserving other half for later
  • Bake loaf for 45 minutes, brush with remaining glaze. Slice and serve

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VEGAN Black Bean Soup

Yes, I eat soup in the summer, all summer long, I have no shame!! People look at me like I’m crazy, and I get it! But, I love soup so much, no amount of hot, humid weather can stop me. I actually used to keep a ‘soup journal’ when I was younger and I would describe and rate the soups I would order at restaurants and places I traveled with my family. I’m quite the soup-conissour, if I do say so myself. Black bean soup has always been one of my favorites. It has such simple, natural ingredients but has so much rich flavor. It really fills you up and keeps you feeling full longer. Plus, the high fiber and protein content is always appealing for us meatless-folk (in my best Southern accent.)

Prep time: 10 min     Cook time: 45 min      Serves: 6

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Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion diced
  • 3 stalks celery chopped fine
  • 2 large carrots peeled and sliced
  • 6 garlic cloves minced
  • 4 tsp ground cumin
  • 4 15-oz cans black beans rinsed and drained
  • 4 cups vegetable broth (low sodium)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • optional garnishes: diced avocado, thinly sliced radish, tortilla chips

Instructions

  • Heat the olive oil in large soup pot over medium heat. Add onions, celery and carrots and sprinkle with salt. Cook, stirring occasionally until vegetables are soft, about 15 minutes
  • Stir in the garlic, cumin and pour in black beans and vegetable broth. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Cook and reduce heat if necessary to maintain a gentle simmer for about 30 minutes
  • Puree 4 cups of the soup in food processor and blend until smooth. Add pureed soup back into pot and add salt and pepper to taste. Garnish as desired and serve hot

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VEGAN Coconut Crusted Tofu with Sweet Chili Sauce

These cute little coconut crusted tofu triangles are the perfect treat for dipping in the sweet chili sauce. They make a great finger food for your little ones too! The tropical yet not too sweet flavors of coconut and pineapple in the sweet chili sauce make this recipe perfect for any season. Tofu is a great source of protein, iron, calcium, and also contains all 8 essential amino acids. It’s one of the best meat substitutes in my opinion because of how versatile it is. I also learned a valuable lesson the hard way while making these for dinner, coconut is extremely flammable! I had a miniature bonfire in my kitchen for a couple seconds but it was all worth it in the end! So worth it.

Prep time: 45 min       Cook time: 20 min     Serves: 4-6

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Ingredients

  • 14 oz extra firm tofu
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar
  • 2 tbsp whole wheat flour
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 3 tbsp cold water
  • 1/2 cup panko
  • 3/4 cup shredded coconut (unsweetened)
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil (for frying)

Sweet Chili Sauce

  • 1/2 cup coconut cream (from 15 oz can full-fat coconut milk)
  • 2 tbsp pineapple juice
  • 1 tsp chili garlic sauce

Instructions

  • Press the tofu for at least 30 minutes
  • To prepare the marinade, combine the soy sauce and coconut sugar in small mixing bowl. Microwave in 15 second intervals mixing in-between
  • Transfer the tofu to a shallow baking dish and pour in the marinade. Move tofu pieces around so each piece is completely coated. Let tofu marinate while you prepare the batter
  • Combine flour, cornstarch, baking powder and water in medium mixing bowl and whisk to combine
  • Pour panic and shredded coconut onto large plate and mix well with your hands
  • Heat the coconut oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Take the first piece of tofu and dip into batter. Shake gently to remove any excess then dredge through shredded coconut and panic mix so all sides are coated. Carefully place in skillet
  • Cook tofu about 2-3 minutes on each side until golden and crispy working in batches. Transfer cooked tofu onto paper towel-lined plate to absorb any excess oil. You may want to switch out the oil halfway through the batches if there is a lot of debris floating around in skillet!
  • While the tofu cools, prepare the sauce. Flip the can of coconut milk upside down and open from the bottom. Pour off the liquid and scoop 1/2 cup of the solid coconut cream into the blender. Add pineapple juice and chili garlic sauce. Blend until smooth
  • Serve tofu warm with a drizzle of sweet chili sauce

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