Peanut Satay Tempeh with Green Beans and Brown Rice

Serves 2-4

Beware: I may add rambling narration through this post, because you really can throw these ingredients and make it your own.  Everyone likes a little something different.

This recipe… Well it was more of a non-recipe.  It is my last semester of college and I am taking my capstone class which has not allowed me to post as much lately (or not at all, who am I kidding) as I would like to.  Alas, I got an evening with free of advertising meetings the other night so I took advantage of it by making something quick, since I still had a lot of design to get done.  By the way, I graduate in 29 days… so if anyone knows of any jobs they want to tell me about, no would be a pristine time.  Now, enough with my shameless self plugs.  Let’s talk about FOOD!

The overall ingredients are pretty simple:

Instant brown rice

Peanut Butter (I used some raw peanut butter from my local co-op but whatever your choice will work just fine)

I had a bag of green beans in the freezer so it’s what I steamed up in a steamer bag, but fresh green beans would be even more nom-nom-ful (that means yummy.)

A little soy sauce

Peanut Satay if you have any on hand, or just add a little hot sauce with the peanut butter, it doesn’t have the same taste as typical Peanut Satay but it still tastes pretty good, I just had about a table-spoon left over from a previous recipe.

And lastly of course some tempeh, I used LightLife.

Steam your green beans (about 2 cups) whatever way you prefer to steam up your veggies.  Or you could just by a bag of frozen vegetables to steam if they’re not in season, you’re on a tight budget, or you just don’t feel like having extra steps in making your meal for the night!

Make 1 cup of brown rice.  I used instant, because I was on a time constraint, but any 1 cup of prepared rice you want to use, go for it.

I took the rectangle of tempeh and cut it into small squares.  I then began to warm them on medium low heat in olive oil with one tablespoon of peanut butter in my wok (a regular frying pan is totally cool too).  While my beans were a’ steaming and my rice was a’ simmering, I put about 1/4 cup of Original Light 8th Continent (it’s my personal FAVORITE, if you can find it) soy milk in the wok and put a frying pan lid into the wok to let the tempeh absorb some moisture so it isn’t as tough.  Some people prefer the typical texture of tempeh, so feel free to not add the soy milk and not steam the tempeh.

After the tempeh has began to warm up in the oil turn the heat to medium

add 1 tsp soy sauce / tamari (again, it’s all your preference, you’re the one whose going to eat it!)

add 1 tbsp peanut satay (I used Thai Kitchen brand, it’s at generally all whole foods and typical supermarkets, but as stated before you can add just a little more peanut butter and maybe a little sriracha sauce – then adjust the spice to your desired level… remember with spice to start off with a little, you can always add more, but you can’t take any of the heat away once it’s there.)

Heat the tempeh for about 5 minutes, being sure to stir and flip the squares to be sure not to burn it.

If you want some more crunch and didn’t use crunch peanut butter put some raw or roasted peanuts in with the rice!

I put the rice in a bowl, topped it with green beans, and some tempeh, but you could also throw all the ingredients in with the tempeh and coat it in the peanut sauce and treat the recipe as more of a stir fry.

I LOVE PEANUT BUTTER.  I will definitely be making this again, but I think I’m going to try it with seitan and broccoli or mixed vegetables next.

Happy nommin’.


Pecan Crusted Sweet Potato Casserole

I went home for Thanksgiving and my mother is a huge fan of anything and everything maple, she is also a huge fan of sweet potatoes, so when I found this recipe it seemed pretty obvious that I should make it, especially since my family aren’t exactly into the whole “vegan,” lifestyle.  This also re-warms really well and makes a great dish for leftovers.

I found the original recipe here: Fat Free Vegan Kitchen, but I made a few adjustments to make it my own.

4 large sweet potatoes

2 Tbsp vegan butter of choice

1/4 cup soy creamer (I used silk)

1/4 cup orange juice

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 cup sugar

1/4 cup maple syrup

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

3/4 teaspoon cinnamon

For the topping

1/4 Cup vegan butter of coice

1/2 Cup brown sugar, packed down

1/3 Cup unbleached white flour

3/4 Cups chopped pecans

2 Tblsp maple syrup


I started by choosing a casserole dish for baking, and preheating the oven to 350 degrees.

I placed the sweet potatoes in the microwave for about 13 minutes after stabbing each potato with a fork 4 times each.  After that, I took the skin off of the potato, after they are cooked like this, you can easily peel off the skin with your hands.

I then mashed in the butter with the sweet potatoes until it was to a nice smooth consistency and added in the rest of the ingredients, and stirred it all in.  I did all of this just in the casserole dish for less clean up.

For the topping I placed the pecans in my food processor on low for a few seconds until the pecans were chopped.  Then put the rest of the ingredients for the topping all together and spread it on top of the sweet potato mixture.

By now the oven should be preheated and I popped the casserole dish in the oven for 45 minutes.


The hardest part about this dish was waiting for it to cook for 45 minutes.  It tasted good, it was easy, and it makes good left overs, what more could you ask out of a thanksgiving dish?


Maple Pecan Caramel Cookies

Because my family are skeptics about anything tasting remotely good that is a vegan product, I decided to cook a lot of maple foods while I was at home to try and appease my mother’s taste buds.  These cookies were delicious, a little messy to make, but overall pretty easy for a homemade cookie recipe.

I got the idea for these cookies at: Fragrant Vanilla Cake

For the cookies:

1 Cup maple or sugar of choice

1/3 Cup coconut oil

1/4 Cup vegan butter (let stand until room temperature for easier mixing)

1/2 Cup unsweetened applesauce

1 Tbsp vanilla extract

2 tsp maple extract

1/2 Cup maple syrup

2 1/2 Cups unbleached flour (the original recipe calls for whole wheat pastry flour, but I had the unbleached on hand)

1 Tbsp baking powder

1 tsp salt

2 Cups pecans chopped (the original recipe called for roasted pecans, I used raw)


1 Cup maple sugar or unbleached granulated sugar

1/4 cup water

2 Tbsp agave nectar

1/3 cup full fat coconut milk

1 Tbsp vegan butter of choice

1/2 Tbsp maple extract

1 tsp salt

In a standing mixer I placed the vegan butter and sugar in and began mixing, slowly adding in the coconut oil and then the rest of the ingredients into the mixing bowl.

Once the batter is mixed let it sit in the fridge for a while so the batter becomes more solid, I left mine in for a few hours.

Pre-heat the oven to 375 and roll cookie dough into balls about 1 1/2 inches, I always tend to make mine a little too big, and they turned out just fine.

Put the cookies in the oven for about 10 minutes, or until they start to puff up and turn a golden brown color around the edge.  Let the cookies cool on a cooling rack over wax paper.  Once the cookies are cooled down drizzle the caramel over the cookies.

(I found it easier to decorate the cookies if I put the pecan topping on the cookie and then drizzled the caramel over the cookie so the caramel served as an adhesive to keep it held down to the cookie)


In a sauce pan bring sugar, water, and agave nectar to a boil, stirring frequently so the sugar all dissolves.  after it is at a boil, lower the heat to low and let boil for 10 minutes stirring on occasion.  After the mixture has turned a deep amber color take the sauce pan off of the heat and slowly add in the rest of the caramel ingredients and stir well.

The original recipe said to place the caramel in the fridge for a while, but because there was so much food already in there for Thanksgiving I made an ice bath in the sink and let it sit in a few inches of cold water with ice until it reached the desired thickness.

Overall, the cookies tasted delicious, but the caramel once at room temperature turned back to a more syrupy substance, so the cookies were fairly messy.  I would make the batter again for sure because I love maple, but maybe add in some chocolate or carob chips and not put the caramel sauce on top just because of the mess.  The nutty flavor of the caramel was really good, but I’m not sure if it was worth the stress of decorating and having to leave in the refrigerator to thicken up.

Baked Artichoke Dip

As the outsider misfit Vegan in a family full of post low-carb enthusiasts Thanksgiving isn’t exactly something to be mind-boggling excited about, or even remotely exciting.

So, I decided that I would try to make something that both non-vegans and I would eat.  Even though whatever I was bringing was the only thing that I’d be eating.  I decided to make a batch of baked artichoke dip with cashew parmesan and tofutti mozzarella.  No one realized that it was Vegan until my immediate family told the rest of them… I think it would have been more interesting to see how it would have turned out if no one knew, but I guess there’s always Christmas.

I bought a bag of baked scoop tortilla chips to use for dipping, but any choice chip could have worked out.  I was going to make some dehydrated chips, but the time got away from me.

(For spinach alternative see the note at the bottom)

I made a lot as a dish to pass, but if you are making the dip for yourself and not many people, you may want to half the recipe.

Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees.

For the artichoke dip I used:

2 8oz containers of Tofutti Cream Cheese brought to room temperature

1 cup of nayonnaise or your choice of mayo substitute

2 cloves of garlic

2 14 oz drained cans of artichoke hearts

salt to taste

1 1/2 tsp smoked or hot paprika

2 slices of tofutti mozzarella cheese

1 cup parmesan cheese (recipe below)

Parmesan Cheese:

1/3 heaping cup of nutritional yeast

2/4 heaping cup raw cashews

1/4 -1/2 tsp salt

place all ingredients into food processor and blend until well combined and powdered


In a blender or food processor blend 2 drained cans of artichoke hearts and 2 cloves of garlic

In a mixing bowl add all of the ingredients and the processed artichoke hearts and garlic and mix together until it is smooth or at desired consistency.

Rip apart small pieces of the tofutti mozzarella and blend with the rest of the ingredients.

Place the mix into a medium to large-sized casserole dish

There will be excess parmesan cheese, sprinkle the rest on top of the dish along with sprinkles of paprika and salt for color and taste.

Place the casserole dish in the oven at 350 degrees and cook for 30 minutes, and then check.  My oven is a little slow so I put mine in for about 40 minutes.

Wait until the top is lightly brown and then serve with dipping chip of your choice.

Note: I didn’t put in spinach in the dip because the original recipe I played with didn’t call for it, but there’s no reason why you couldn’t do one can of drained spinach and one can of drained artichoke hearts for a more common spinach and artichoke dip, or 2 cans of spinach for just a spinach dip!

Effortless Raisin Pecan Oatmeal

After yesterday’s almost extravagant breakfast I didn’t have the effort to do much besides put the food on the spoon and put the spoon in my mouth.  So, I decided to make oatmeal, one of the easiest breakfast foods to make.

3/4 Cup instant oatmeal

1/2 C boiling or hot water

1/4 Cup Raisins

1/2 a handful of pecans (walnuts are also a softer nice nut to put in oatmeal)

a splash of soymilk

about 1/2 tsp cinnamon

a sprinkle of brown sugar

Place the oatmeal in a medium sized bowl

add the hot water and then stir

Add all of the ingredients and mix as much as desired.  If you like your oatmeal a little more watery then go ahead and add either more soy milk or more boiling water, I prefer it a little more firm with the raisins for consistency.  Also, other dried fruit tastes great in oatmeal, like dried cranberries or cherries!

Adding the pecans (or other nut of your choice) also adds protein to your morning.

It also only takes about 5 minutes to make 🙂

French Toast and Seitan Breakfast

This was om-nom-nom worthy, for sure.

The french toast flavor was absolutely delicious.  Most of this breakfast was made from left overs from other things that I made this week.  The bread was starting to get crumby and I didn’t want to take the time to make a better seitan sausage, so I improvised, and it worked out pretty well.

It’s hard to get my boyfriend to come over in the morning unless I offer gifts of free breakfast food, so I tried to make something that he could put syrup on- because he likes it way more than I do.

For the french toast I used 4 large slices of bread- if you’re using typical store bought bread this recipe may cover 5 to 6 slices, for home made bread that is a little thicker or texas toast this recipe will be for about 4 slices. (double or half the recipe depending on how many people you want to serve, it will still be just as good, I originally tried this with 2 slices)

French Toast:

4 large slices of bread

1/2 C pecans (I used raw pecans)

1/2 C water

6 Tbsp maple syrup

1/2 – 1 tsp vanilla extract

a pinch of salt

grated ginger (optional)

1 tsp cinnamon

In a food processor or high speed blender chop the pecans until they are chopped pretty fine.

Then add the water, syrup, vanilla extract, pinch of salt, and cinnamon to the mixture in the food processor.  Process the mixture on high for about a minute or until the mixture is smooth and creamy.

Coat the slices of bread in the mixture for about 5 minutes in a large bowl or dish

Put a small amount of oil on a skillet and put the slices of toast on the skillet for 1 to 2 minutes on each side, until golden brown.  Do not over crowd the skillet, do how ever many slices at a time your skillet will allow, but if they get too close they can start to cook to one and other and fall apart when you go to serve them.

On top of my french toast I put a little hint of powdered sugar, a few pecans, and a drizzle of maple syrup- but put any of your favorite toppings on the toast and serve immediately.

For the Seitan, I used the left overs from the wontons.  I used 8 oz of seitan cubed wheat protein.  I used the West Soy brand, it’s in a blue box (24 g a protein in one serving for 140 calories!- 2.5 servings in the 8 oz box)

I cut the seitan up and put it in a smaller skillet with olive oil.  I stirred the seitan to be sure it was entirely covered in oil.

1 clove chopped garlic

2 whites of a green onion (a few dices from the green if you would like)

1/2 tsp smoked paprika (more to flavor if you’d like)

salt and black pepper to taste

I fried this on low-medium stirring it to be sure it got evenly browned while I worked on the french toast.  You could fry it on medium for about 10 minutes, checking it and stirring it as needed.

Taste, and add any extra spices and oil you need for taste, and serve immediately

(owl coffee mug does not appear when meal is prepared)

It’s a delicious and protein packed breakfast for a Saturday morning- it’s a nice beginning to the day after Friday night ;)!

Seitan Cabbage Wontons

1 8 oz pack of seitan, chopped in food processor

2 1/2 Cups nappa cabbage shredded in a food processor

add to the cabbage and seitan mixture:

1 tsp mirin

1 tsp soy sauce

1 tsp grated ginger

1 tsp sesame oil

stir the mixture so it’s coated.

in wonton shells add about a teaspoon of mixture into the shell and then follow the brand of wontons you bought on how to seal them up, that will be the easiest way to be sure they hold.  An easy way is just to take a small bowl of water and wet the edges and stick them together to make little triangular wontons.

Cover the wontons with a damp towel while the rest of them are continued to be folded up.

When the wontons are all made, take out a skillet and fry the wontons in oil (I used olive oil, but canola or vegetable oil would work as well).  I drizzled soy sauce on the top of the wontons right as they got off the skillet.  Be sure not to load the skillet too much, so you can flip the wontons when ready.  I did 5 at a time in my wok.

These were pretty good, they tasted delicious but I tried to follow the recipes out of a cook book instead of out of the packaging and didn’t look pretty.  So, I would recommend following those directions.  Finding wonton skins without egg whites took a while to find, but they are available.

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