Chocolate Date Bites

This recipe is gluten free, oil free, vegan

Dates are a nutrient dense food rich in B vitamins and Vitamin K. They’re also a great source of magnesium and zinc. They’re naturally sweet and help to improve digestive function and regulate cholesterol.

Ingredients:

1 cup pitted dates

1/4 cup walnuts

1/4 cup raw sunflower seeds

1/4 cup raw pumpkin seeds

3 – 6 tablespoons coconut flour

3 – 6 tablespoons cacao powder

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 – 2 cups unsweetened shredded coconut

Directions:

Soak dates for at least 3 hours. Drain off water and put in food processor along with cinnamon, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, and sunflower seeds. Pulse until mixed and dates begin to form a paste. Add 3 tablespoons of coconut flour and 3 tablespoons of cacao powder to start. You can add more as needed depending on the consistency of your date batter. Pulse on high until dates, coconut flour, and chocolate begin to mix together.

Transfer date mixture to a large mixing bowl and add shredded coconut. Kneed together with hands until all ingredients are evenly distributed and the date mixture can be formed into small bite-sized balls.

Watch the video below to see how I make mine! Please like and share this recipe.

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Savory Butternut Squash Soup

This recipe is gluten free, vegan

Butternut squash is high in Vitamins A, E, C, and B. It also contains calcium, magnesium and zinc. Sweet Potatoes contain vitamin A and beta carotene. Together they are a low glycemic, heart healthy addition to any diet.

Spinach is high in Vitamin K and Iron, which supports bone health, while onions and garlic have anti-viral properties.

Walnuts and pumpkin seeds add potassium which supports the central nervous system and helps the body regulate fluids – aiding in anti-inflammatory diets.

Ingredients:

1/2 medium butternut squash

2 sweet potatoes

1 cup celery hearts

2 – 3 cups spinach leaves

1 red onion

3 – 5 cloves garlic

1 can chick peas (or 2 cups pre-cooked)

2 – 4 cups precooked long grain wild rice

1 large can (15oz) coconut milk

Seasonings: rosemary, thyme, sage, oregano, salt, pepper

Garnish: walnuts and pumpkin seeds

Directions:

Peal and cut butternut squash and sweet potatoes into bite sized pieces. Chop onion into bite sized pieces and mince garlic. Add squash, sweet potato, garlic, onion, and spinach to crockpot. Add in spices to taste. Add water until vegetables are covered and turn on high for approximately 3 hours. Turn crockpot to low and add in chick peas, and rice. Cook until potatoes and squash are soft and easy to poke with a fork. Add in coconut milk 15 – 20 minutes before serving. Garnish with walnuts and pumpkin seeds.

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Pasta Primavera

This recipe is gluten free and vegan

Cruciferous vegetables and dark leafy greens like broccoli and spinach are a great source of calcium. Tomatoes and peppers are high in Vitamin C. Onions and garlic are antiviral foods that help fight off colds and flu.

Ingredients:

2 – 4 cups organic, gluten free pasta of your choice

1/2 cup bell pepper

1 – 2 cups spinach

1 medium onion

1/2 cup grape tomatoes

1/4 cup pumpkin seeds

3 – 5 cloves minced garlic

1 large can (15oz) coconut milk

Seasonings: sea salt, pepper, oregano, basil, dill

Directions:

Cook pasta according to package directions and set aside. Chop onions and peppers into bite sized pieces. In a separate sauce pan, saute onions, pepper, garlic, and spinach on medium heat until vegetables are cooked through. Add coconut milk and spices. Turn heat to low and simmer for 3 – 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add sauce to already cooked pasta and stir thoroughly. Plate pasta and garnish with fresh tomatoes and pumpkin seeds.

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Juicing Basics

I love juicing in the morning. I start out every day with 8 – 10 ounces of plain celery juice followed by a second juice. My second juice is either melon based or carrot based. I’ve been juicing like this every day for the past three years – and January 26th will be my juice anniversary.

Here is how I put together my juice for the day along with some basic tips to help you create a juice routine that works for you!

Every morning I check the fruits and vegetables that are ready to be used in my kitchen. Once I decide on a melon or carrot base, I build from there.

For melon based juices, I use either straight watermelon, straight cantaloupe, or honeydew with a few additions. If I have grapes or pomegranates that need to be used up, I add those to my honeydew recipe.

For my carrot juices, I use carrots, cilantro, ginger, and turmeric for the base. I’ll add 3 – 5 medium carrots, one bunch of cilantro, and 1 inch each of ginger root and turmeric root. You can substitute loose leaf parsley for cilantro if desired. Fruits and vegetables I add with this basic carrot base include the following:

apples

oranges

mangos

papayas

pineapple

pears

summer squash

zuchinni

lemons

How much I use of each ingredient depends on what is ripe and ready to use.

Here are some tips to help you explore recipes and build a juice routine that works for you.

  1. Start with ingredients you know you like
  2. Make simple 1 – 3 ingredient juices and build from there
  3. Take the time to explore juicing recipes and videos online (check out my juicing videos on YouTube at Unprofessionally Plant Based)
  4. Have fun and enjoy the process
  5. Share your recipes with others

**Just a quick note, mangoes and papayas produce very thick juice. It works best to juice a slice or two of these fruits followed by a more watery fruit or vegetable like apples, zuchinni, or summer squash. This will give you the best yield for your fruit while preventing your juicer from clogging up**

Check out the following two juicing videos I made from my Facebook Live Events this Veganuary to help you get started:

Follow me on Instagram and YouTube at Unprofessionally Plant Based, and on Facebook at PT for the Soul.

Mini Microwave Casseroles

Mini Microwave Casseroles are an easy way to teach yourself and your family how to cook healthy, whole food, plant based meals in under 10 minutes.

You can play around with ingredients to create whatever kind of casserole you’d like. Get the family involved and be creative!

Mini casseroles are versatile like tacos, and I consider them the TV dinners of cooking from scratch. The base of the casserole is whatever kind of pre-cooked rice and beans you have on hand. The rest is up to you!

Some of my favorite combo ideas include:

*Avocado, Onion, and Squash

*Bell Peppers, Onions, and Tomatoes

*Mango, Avocado, and Spinach

*Olives and Kimchi

*Squash, Walnuts, and Pumpkin Seeds

Have a mini casserole night with your family and let each person create their own meal. Sample each other’s creations and explore home cooking the way it’s meant to be.

Check out my video to see how to make easy mini casseroles in minutes!

*Using leftover veggies in your mini casseroles is a great way to save money and eliminate food waste*

Festive Christmas Rice

This recipe is plant based, gluten free, vegan.

This dish is a festive, colorful addition to any holiday meal.

Ingredients:

2 cups spinach

2 cups grape tomatoes

1 small red onion

3 – 4 cloves garlic

2 – 3 cups pre-cooked short grain brown rice

Season to taste using: parsley, sage, rosemary, thyme, salt, pepper

Directions:

Heat 1 tablespoon coconut oil in a large skillet. Add 1 tablespoon rosemary to oil and lightly toast for a minute or two on medium to high heat.

Add chopped red onion. Toss in pan with rosemary until onions are lightly browned. Turn heat to medium low and add spinach, tomatoes, and garlic. Stir frequently until spinach begins to wilt. Add cooked rice along with remaining seasonings and continue to cook on medium to low heat until rice is hot. Add small amounts of water if needed to keep rice from sticking to the bottom of the pan.

Happy Holidays from our table to yours. May you be happy, healthy, and well.

Grain Free Chocolate Walnut Brownies

This recipe is: gluten free, grain free, oil free, vegan.

Walnuts are an excellent source of B vitamins and omega 6 and 9 fatty acids. They help reduce cholesterol, improve heart health and brain function, and they’re good for your skin.

Ingredients:

3 ripe bananas

1 T cinnamon

1 t salt

1 t baking powder

1/4 t vanilla extract

1 1/4 cup almond flour

1/2 cup cacao powder

1 – 2 cups chopped walnuts

Directions:

Peel bananas and mash into thick paste. Add cinnamon, salt, baking powder, and vanilla extract. Mix evenly. Fold in almond flour and cacao. Add chopped walnuts and mix evenly.

Lightly grease an 8 x 10 inch baking pan. Add brownie mixture. Bake at 375F for 30 minutes.

Refrigerate leftovers for best results.

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Red, White, and Green Vegetable Bean Soup

This recipe is: plant based, grain free, oil free

Red and white beans are anti inflammatory. They improve heart health and help to control blood sugar. They also have cancer fighting properties. Broccoli, which protects against heart disease, heart attack, and stroke, is an excellent compliment to this heart healthy, cancer fighting soup.

Ingredients:

1 red onion

1 white onion

1 celery heart

3 – 4 cups spinach

1 head broccoli

3 – 6 cloves garlic

4 cups kidney and white bean blend (one 15 oz can each)

1 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Seasonings: salt, pepper, sage, rosemary, thyme

Directions:

Chop onions, celery, and broccoli into bite sized pieces and add to slow cooker. Add spinach and beans. Mince garlic and finely chop cilantro. Add to soup along with seasonings. Cover vegetables with water and set slow cooker for desired cook time.

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A to Zinc Sweet Potato and Brussels Sprouts Casserole

This recipe is: gluten free, plant based, vegan

This recipe packs an anti viral punch with vitamins A and C, and Zinc. Brussels sprouts and long grain wild rice are also great sources of plant based protein. The sweet potatoes add extra B vitamins and beta carotene, making this meal a nourishing part of a healthy diet.

Ingredients:

2 medium sweet potatoes

8 – 10 small to medium Brussels sprouts

1 medium onion

1 cup spinach (or any other dark leafy green – kale, collard greens, Swiss chard, beet greens, etc)

3 cups long grain wild rice (or any rice)

1 can coconut milk.

1 cup chopped walnuts

Seasonings: salt, pepper, oregano, and basil

Directions:

Chop sweet potato, Brussels sprouts, and onions into bite sized pieces. Add to large mixing bowl with spinach and chopped walnuts. Skim coconut milk fat off water and add to mixing bowl along with spices. Mix thoroughly, until coconut milk is evenly mixed with vegetables. Add three cups rice and continue mixing until well blended.

Lightly grease an 11 x 14 inch casserole dish. Spread casserole evenly in casserole dish and bake at 350F for 40 – 45 minutes.

This casserole is delicious on its own as a main course. Leftovers can be used in burritos and quesadillas, or as stuffing for baked acorn or butternut squashes.

Orange Hazelnut Cookies

This recipe is gluten free, oil free, vegan

Ingredients:

2 large, ripe bananas

1 cup chopped hazelnuts

1/4 cup maple syrup

1 cup Gluten free all purpose baking flour

1 cup almond flour

1 T cinnamon

1/4 t orange extract

1 t salt

1 t baking powder

Directions:

Peel bananas and mash them until smooth in a large mixing bowl. Coarsely chop hazelnuts and add to bananas along with maple syrup, salt, baking powder, cinnamon, and orange extract. Mix thoroughly.

Add all purpose and almond flour. Mix until well blended. Spoon out cookies onto cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.

Bake at 350F for 18 – 20 minutes. Yield: 12 – 15 cookies.

These cookies are a great edition to your Holiday Baking for all of your gluten free and vegan friends and family. Happy Holidays Everyone!