Breadless Toast: Madness, Genius or Just Plain Deliciousness?

Today’s kitchen creation is being served with a confession on the side.

I’m not a bread person.

Did you even know that’s a thing? To not like bread? My secret shame. Nope, can’t even order avocado toast for Sunday Brunch despite my all-consuming avoddiction (P.S. that word DOES exist. Look it up).

But *insert sigh of relief* order is now restored to the galaxy because I’ve discovered a breadless alternative—sweet potato toast. A.K.A. the latest foodie trend currently taking over my life. Forreal.

And if plant-based + gluten-free + downright delectable sounds like the ultimate jam, then prepare for a takeover on your life too.

I rest my case. Times three, in fact. Because you’re about to experience…

sweet potato toast three ways

Just grab a sweet potato, then go culinary crazy with all the fixings. And here’s some inspo to get those creative juices (not to mention, appetite!) flowing.


Ingredients:

sweet potato toast savory ingredients2 tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 small can Chickpeas

1/2 tsp. Ground Paprika

1/4 tsp. Ground Cumin

1 Juiced Lemon

                             sweet potato toast sweet ingredients

2 tbsp. Chopped Raw Almonds

1 tbsp. Organic Almond Butter

1/2 tsp. Ground Cinnamon

1/2 Sliced Apple

sweet potato toast spicy ingredients

1/2 tsp. Sriracha Sauce

4-5 Spinach Leaves

1/2 Hass Avocado

1/4 tsp. Sea Salt

                                                                                                                   


 Preparation:

  1. Cut the Potato into 3 slices about, 1/4-inch thick, leaving the skin on.
  2. Put each slice in a toaster and cook for 5 minutes, or until the texture becomes pliable but still firm.
  3. Drain and rinse the Chickpeas, then transfer 1/2 into a food processor.
  4. Add the Lemon and 1 tbsp. Olive Oil, then puree this mixture until a hummus consistency forms.
  5. Place the remaining Chickpeas on a foil-lined baking sheet and pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees.
  6. Drizzle them with 1 tbsp. Olive Oil, Cumin and Paprika, then cook in the oven for 10 minutes, or until the Chickpeas become crispy.
  7. Spread the hummus over the first Potato slice and top with the roasted Chickpeas to make savory toast.
  8. Chop the Almonds coarsely and slice the Apple, then spread Almond Butter over the second Potato slice.
  9. Top with the Apples, Almonds and Cinnamon to make sweet toast.
  10. Mash the Avocado until a guacamole consistency forms and spread over the third Potato slice.
  11. Top with the Spinach and Sea Salt, then drizzle on Sriracha to make spicy toast.

Seriously…moment of silent introspection for these wondrous little tubers.

Alright, moment over. Girl’s gotta eat!

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Mighty Nut: the Protein Powder of Champions + Giveaway

I first discovered Peanut Butter & Co back in college when surviving on PB&J sammies was an occupational hazard of dorm life. The creamy texture, finger licking flavors and all-natural ingredients powered me through everything from finals cram sessions (thanks for the 4.0, PB & Co!) to weekend Netflix binges (damn, I miss college sometimes!).

So, when I recently discovered PB & Co’s Mighty Nut protein powder, I just couldn’t resist. Not only does this product deliver all the smooth, silky lusciousness of traditional peanut butter, the finely ground consistency lends itself to baking, blending, sprinkling and more!

From smoothies to oatmeal, Mighty Nut is a convenient — and indulgent — way to meet your daily protein quota.

mighty nut powdered peanut butter

Here’s what you’ll find in each (2 tbsp.) serving:

  • 85% less fat calories than regular peanut butter
  • vegan, gluten-free and non-GMO certified
  • 5-6 grams of protein
  • 1-2 grams of fiber
  • only 1-2 grams of sugar
  • only 1-1.5 grams of fat

Plus, it’s available in 4 delightful varieties:

  • Original
  • Vanilla
  • Chocolate
  • Flax & Chia

I’ve specifically been playing around with the Flax & Chia flavor, so behold my latest creation — Vegan Pumpkin & Peanut Butter Muffins. Because, any excuse for fall yummies, right?!

Pumpkin Muffins

Ingredients:

1 cup Unsweetened Pumpkin Purée

3/4 cup Whole Wheat Flour*

1/2 cup Unsweetened Cashew Milk

1/4 cup Mighty Nut Peanut Butter Powder

1 tbsp. All-Natural Almond Butter

1 tsp. Pumpkin Pie Spice

1/2 tsp. Baking Soda

1/4 tsp. Cinnamon

Organic Stevia (to-taste)

*Make this recipe gluten-free by substituting any of these alternatives.

Pumpkin Muffin Ingredients

Preparation:

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees and spray a muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray or use baking liners.
  2. Mix all the ingredients together in a medium-sized bowl until the batter is smooth and thoroughly combined.
  3. Pour the batter into each individual muffin cup (you should have enough batter to fill about 6 cups).
  4. Bake the muffins for approximately 20 minutes, or until they are completely cooked through (test with a toothpick to make sure).
  5. Allow the muffins to cool slightly for approximately 5 minutes, then give into the temptation — it’s guiltless, I swear!

Pumpkin Muffins Batter

Pumpkin Muffins Finished Product

Wanna score your own jar of Mighty Nut amazingness? Just enter my Giveaway through the following channels:

Open to U.S. residents only. Deadline to enter is October 25, midnight EST. One prize per person. If you have already won a Mighty Nut giveaway from another blog, please disclose this, so I can choose another winner. 

 

Summertime Fine with a Salad the Side

Summer is my favorite time of year for several reasons. Warm weather. Beach weekends. Fireworks. Outdoor cookouts. My birthday month. And fresh, vibrant, delectable veggies!

Speaking of summery produce in all its glory, this girl’s been busy testing new recipes lately. And, I’m pleased to report the results are successful.

Like…you should be so lucky to visit my kitchen.

Fortunately though, I’m bringing the deliciousness to you!

Who doesn’t love a seasonal salad — chock full of crisp, colorful, refreshing flavors? The following recipe offers just that with a zesty Asian twist. Better yet: it’s nutrient-packed, plant-based and 100% raw. So, treat yourself to seconds (or thirds!). I dare you to resist…

Thai Chopped Salad with Almond-Sriracha Dressing

Ingredients:

2 c. Romaine Lettuce (chopped)

1 c. Red Cabbage (chopped)

1 Red Bell Pepper (matchstick sliced)

1/2 c. Baby Carrots (matchstick sliced)

1/2 c. Garbanzo Beans

1/2 c. Raw Cashews

Thai Chopped Salad ingredients

For the Dressing:

3 tbsp. Soy Sauce (low-sodium)

2 tbsp. Almond Butter (all-natural)

2 tbsp. Agave Nectar

1/2 tbsp. Sriracha Sauce

Thai Chopped Salad dressing ingredients

Preparation:

1. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the Soy SauceAlmond ButterAgave Nectar and Sriracha Sauce until smooth.

2. In a larger bowl, toss together the Lettuce, Red Cabbage, Bell Pepper, Carrots, Garbanzo Beans and Cashews until evenly distributed.

3. Drizzle the Dressing over the Salad, then roughly toss again to coat the dressing throughout before serving.

Thai Chopped Salad dressing

Thai Chopped Salad 1

Serving Suggestion:

Double the dressing ingredients to achieve a creamier texture, then dish up the salad over Brown Jasmine Rice for a curry-esque taste.

Summer Eats, (Slightly!) Slimmed-Down

I say “slightly” because some of the ingredients featured in these recipes aren’t as — errrhealthy as they could be. For example, Brioche is used rather than a more nutritious whole wheat alternative.

But, hey…Sometimes you just gotta have those comfort carbs!

(Alright. I confess: my eating habits are, in fact, subject to slip-ups. You caught me. I’m human, too!)

Anywho, since May is underway, classic warm weather favorites are making their seasonal debut, and in my kitchen, I can’t resist showcasing those fresh ‘n airy flavors all day long — from breakfast to dinner!

Whether you crave “brekky” in bed or a poolside cookout this weekend, here’s what I’ve got in the works to tickle your summertime taste buds:


First, on the menu…Who’s up for brunchin’ it?!

AVOCADO & ALMOND BUTTER PROTEIN PANCAKES

Ingredients:

1/2 Hass Avocado

1 c. Whole Wheat Flour

1 Egg (omit if Vegan)

3 tbsp. Water

1 tbsp. Agave Nectar

1 tbsp. Almond Butter

1 tbsp. Whole Grain Oats

Preparation:

  1. Peel and core the halved Avocado, then transfer it into a small mixing bowl and mash until smooth, as though you’re making guacamole.
  2. Add the FlourOats, Water, Egg (unless, of course, you’re vegan!), Agave Nectar and Oats into the mixing bowl, then combine all the ingredients together thoroughly.
  3. Coat a small skillet with non-stick Cooking Spray and pre-heat the skillet on a medium stovetop setting.
  4. Spoon the desired amounts of Batter into the skillet, then cook evenly on both sides, about 2-3 minutes each.
  5. Transfer the Pancakes onto a plate and allow them to cool slightly, then top each pancake with a dollop of Almond Butter.

avocado pancakes


And, now for round two…Did someone say din-din?!

TANGY CUCUMBER, LEMON & DILL SALMON BURGERS

Ingredients:

1 Skinless Salmon Fillet

2-3 Cucumber Slices

2 slices Brioche (I used St. Pierre)

1 Garlic Clove

1 tbsp. Lemon Juice

2 tsp. Lemon Zest

1 tsp. Dried Dill Weed

2 tbsp. Feta (sub. for Cashew Cream if vegan)

1/4 c. Plain Greek Yogurt (check out this non-dairy guide if vegan)

Preparation:

  1. Coat a small skillet with non-stick Cooking Spray and pre-heat the skillet on a medium stovetop setting.
  2. Place the Salmon in the skillet and saute evenly on both sides until the fish is cooked thoroughly, about 5-7 minutes each.
  3. While the fish is cooking, whisk the YogurtGarlicDill, Lemon Juice and Lemon Zest together in a small bowl, then set aside temporarily.
  4. Place the Brioche slices in a toaster until they turn golden-brown and crispy, then transfer them onto a plate.
  5. Spread a thin layer of the Yogurt Sauce on each Brioche slice and place the Salmon on one of the slices.
  6. Garnish with the Cucumber slices and crumbled Feta (or cashew cream), then place the remaining Brioche slice on top.
  7. Serve this Salmon Burger alongside a tropical fruit medley — such as Mango, Kiwi and Avocado.

salmon burger

(In other news: it just occurred to me that I might be suffering from an Avo-Addiction.)

Spring Has Sprung. Here’s a Smoothie to Celebrate.

With the weather FINALLY warming up and this life-giving season in full, glorious swing, let’s do a smoothie recipe!

Wanna cool off from a day spent soaking up the sun, while treating your body to essential nourishment at the same time? Sure ya do! So, whether you need to refuel after a workout, snack smart between meals, or stay energized and refreshed in the great outdoors, I’ve got a SUPER SMOOTHIE that will satisfy on all cylinders.

This blendiful thirst-quencher is also a  nutritional powerhouse — featuring protein packed edamame, Omega-3 enriched avocado, antioxidant fortified papaya, and vitamin loaded spinach.

But, if those health benefits don’t quite tickle your taste buds, maybe the lusciously creamy texture will. Trust me, getting more greens in your diet has never been so indulgent!


Avocado & Edamame Green Smoothie

total time: 5 minutes; yields: 1 serving

Ingredients:

1 tbsp. Spinach (shredded)

1/4 c. Papaya (fresh or frozen, diced)

1/4 c. Edamame (shelled)

1/2 Avocado (peeled & diced)

1/2 tsp. Rolled Oats (whole grain)

1 tsp. Almond Butter (organic)

1 c. Cashew Milk (unsweetened)

1 scoop Greenberry Shakeology Powder (optional, if you’re an avid Shakeology fan, like me!)*

*If you’re looking for a natural protein powder but can’t afford Shakeology, I’d highly recommend checking out Fuel-6 from DailyBurn. This supplement is an excellent source of plant-based protein; plus it’s vegan, gluten-free, soy-free and dairy-free. Can’t beat those stats, right?

green smoothie ingredients

Preparation:

Combine these ingredients together in a blender and puree until smooth.

green smoothieSpringtime just got sweeter. Bottoms up, my fellow smoothie enthusiasts!


P.S. Sharing is caring, so spread the love by re-posting this recipe on social media — or even feature your own blended concoction — with the hashtag #ShowUsYourSmoothie.

10 Ingenious Ingredient Hacks that Equal Smoothie Perfection

Yeaaaah. I’m that girl, who’s best friends with her blender and thinks smoothie-making should be considered the ultimate in culinary expertise.

And, therefore, I don’t just limit myself to the standard, predictable “fruity fare.” Not that I don’t love a classic strawberry-banana combo, but experimenting with unusual flavor profiles is what keeps luring me back to the kitchen.

That’s why no liquid concoction in my repertoire would be complete without the following add-ins. Once blended all together, you might not even notice their subtle, sublime presence; nevertheless, these “superfood” ingredients boost your diet with natural, (mostly) plant-based nutrition without compromising the velvety texture and refreshing taste that you expect from a perfectly-pureed smoothie.

1. Hemp Hearts

hemp hearts

image courtesy of babble.com

 These crisp and nutty seeds are loaded with protein, iron, Vitamin E, whole grains, and Omega-3 & Omega-6 fatty acids for cardiovascular, cholesterol, metabolic, reproductive, and anti-inflammatory health.

2. Rolled Oats

image courtesy of keeperofthehome.org

image courtesy of keeperofthehome.org

This hearty and filling cereal is loaded with fiber, protein, magnesium, zinc, Vitamin E, whole grains, and antioxidants (polyphenols, carotenoids & flavonoids) for cardiovascular, cholesterol, immune, and digestive health.

3. Almond Butter

almond butter

image courtesy of amyshealthybaking.com

 This thick and creamy spread is loaded with protein, calcium, copper, fiber, Vitamin E, magnesium, and Omega-3 fatty acids for cardiovascular, cholesterol musculoskeletal, neurological, nervous, and digestive health.   

4. Leafy Greens

leafy greens

image courtesy of busterbucks.hubpages.com

These fresh and nutrient-dense veggies are loaded with potassium, calcium, iron, Vitamins A, C & K, folate, magnesium, and antioxidants for cardiovascular, circulatory, immune, and respiratory health (serving suggestions: spinach, kale, chard, collards & watercress).

5. Chia Seeds

chia seeds

image courtesy of mindbodygreen.com

These crunchy and micro-sized seedlings are loaded with protein, manganese, magnesium, calcium, zinc, Vitamin B, potassium, and Omega-3 fatty acids for cardiovascular, immune, anti-aging, energy endurance, and metabolic health.

6. Green Tea

green tea

image courtesy of webhealthjournal.com

This light and invigorating beverage is loaded with antioxidants (catechins & flavonoids) and natural caffeine for  cardiovascular, immune, dental metabolic, energy endurance, neurological, and circulatory health (serving suggestion: matcha, or finely powdered green tea).

7. Coconut Water

image courtesy of coconutwaterlife.com

image courtesy of coconutwaterlife.com

This tangy and hydrating beverage is loaded with fiber, electrolytes, potassium, calcium, phosphorus, bio-active enzymes, Vitamin B, and natural sugar (glucose) for digestive, circulatory, anti-aging, and gastrointestinal health.

8. Raw Cacao

image courtesy of iquitsugar.com

image courtesy of iquitsugar.com

This tart and chocolatey powder is rich in antioxidants (polyphenols & flavonoids), fiber, digestive enzymes, Vitamins A, B, C & E, chromium, magnesium, zinc, iron, sulphur, manganese, and Omega-fatty acids for cardiovascular, cholesterol, immune, circulatory, and neurological health.

9. Greek Yogurt

image courtesy of leanitup.com

This rich and satisfying dairy product is loaded with protein, calcium, iodine, potassium, Vitamin B, and probiotics for musculoskeletal, energy endurance, gastrointestinal, metabolic, and neurological health (serving suggestion: unsweetened variety).

10. Avocados

image courtesy of iwashyoudry.com

image courtesy of iwashyoudry.com

 These indulgent and buttery fruits are loaded with Omega-3 fatty acids, protein, fiber, potassium, zinc, copper, iron, phosphorus, folate, and Vitamins A, B, C, E & K for cardiovascular, cholesterol, anti-aging, anti-inflammatory, and circulatory health.

So, yeah. That’s my arsenal of secret smoothie superbness. Got any of your own faves worth adding to the list? Share in the comments below!

Satisfy that Sweet Tooth the (Almost) Vegan Way

I say “almost” because this recipe uses 1 egg, which qualifies as an animal by-product, but true vegans need not despair. Simply substitute 1/4 cup pureed banana, 1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt or 1/4 cup oil of your choice, and you’ve got a bona fide vegan party-in-the-mouth!

And, for all you other foodies out there, meet the answer to your ongoing dilemma: Do I eat dessert and regret it later, or skip dessert and regret it RIGHT NOW? These Avocado & Almond Butter Cookies deliver all the indulgence of your favorite guilty pleasure…only without that pesky guilt-part. Rejoice!

  • Ingredients:
  1. 1 egg yolk
  2. 1 tsp. baking powder
  3. 1/4 cup almond butter
  4. 3 tbsp. raw honey
  5. 2 packets Stevia
  6. 1/2 cup almond flour*
  7. 1/4 cup dates (chopped)
  8. 1/2 avocado (mashed)

*You can easily and inexpensively make your own almond flour by grinding 1/2 cup slivered almonds in a blender or food processor until finely powdered.*

avocado cookie ingredients

  • Preparation:
  1. Combine the mashed avocado, egg yolk, honey and almond butter together in a mixing bowl.
  2. Add the baking powder, Stevia packets and almond flour, then stir until the batter is smooth.
  3. Fold in the dates, then spoon the batter onto a greased baking sheet in the shape of cookies.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 15 minutes, or until the cookies have cooked thoroughly.

avocado cookie batter

avocado cookies pre bakingavocado cookies post baking

  • Serving Suggestion:

In addition to a sweet mid-afternoon snack or lighter after-dinner dessert, enjoy these tasty treats in the morning for an omega-3 and protein-packed breakfast.

avocado cookie taste test

(And, of course, I was obligated to take these babies out for a test chew, now wasn’t I…?!)