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Filtering by Category: Lunch

Vegan BBQ Sandwich Made With JackFruit and Broccoli Slaw

Sharon Muse

With Father's Day coming up, we wanted to provide you with a quick and easy dish that dad will love as well as the rest of the family - no matter their eating style. This vegan BBQ sandwich is made with jackfruit and in case you aren't familiar with it - it really does have the texture of pulled pork. If you don't want to tell anyone it's vegan, you won't have to :)!

Jackfruit has gained a lot of popularity recently due to the fact that it has a similar texture to chicken or pork and is fairly neutral in flavor. Known as the "Jack of all Fruits" it takes on almost any flavor you put with it and pairs well with sauces. Making it the perfect ingredient for our vegan BBQ sandwich!

Let us tell you a little bit about our star ingredient: Jackfruit is a relative to the fig and is found in tropical areas like Southeast Asia, Brazil, and Africa. It is low in calories, contains no cholesterol or saturated fats like animal products, however, the fruit itself does not contain much protein. It does have a great amount of Vitamin C, A, Iron, Manganese and is a good source of fiber.

We thought this is a great recipe for those days when you want a break from meat as well as an easy dinner to whip up for dad on his special day! Although we love our fathers every day, this Sunday is the perfect time to spoil him and thank him for being the best around. Happy Father's Day to all and we hope you enjoy this recipe!

Ingredients:

serves 4
 

2 cans of Jackfruit (in water, not brine or syrup) drained and rinsed

3/4 cup BBQ sauce of your choice (just watch the sugar content) or more if you like

BBQ seasonings (we used 2 T coconut sugar + 1 tsp paprika + 1 tsp garlic powder + 1/2 tsp chili powder)

1 T Avocado or Olive Oil

Avocado

4 buns

Broccoli Slaw:

Bag of Broccoli Slaw (find this in the produce section of your favorite grocery store)

1/4 cup Veganaise or good quality mayonnaise

3 T Apple Cider Vinegar

1/2 T Honey

1/2 tsp. Celery Seed

1-2 Chopped scallions

Instructions:

1.) Empty the bag of slaw into a large mixing bowl and set aside.

2.) In a small bowl, mix together the veganaise, apple cider vinegar, honey, and celery seed - stir to combine. 

3.) Pour dressing over the bowl of slaw, add scallions and mix together. Place in the refrigerator so that the flavors have a chance to combine. If you can do this a day ahead of time - even better!

4.) While the slaw is cooling off in the fridge, start working on the BBQ jackfruit. Drain, rinse, and thoroughly dry the canned fruit. Slice off the center/core part of the fruit and discard.

5.) In a separate bowl, toss the jackfruit with the bbq seasoning so that it is covered evenly.

6.) Heat oil in a medium-sized skillet over medium-high heat, add the seasoned jackfruit and sauté about 3-4 minutes.

7.) Pour the sauce over the fruit and stir. If you are using a thick BBQ sauce you can add a tablespoon of water. For a more shredded texture, use a fork to pull the pieces apart. Reduce heat to low, cover with a lid and let cook for 20-30 minutes (the longer you let cook, the deeper the flavor). 

8.) To plate, open your bun and place some slices of avocado on the bottom, then a spoonful of the slaw. Top with the BBQ jackfruit mixture and option to add a little more BBQ sauce on top. Place the other half of the bun on and ENJOY!!

 

 

 

Homemade Sweet Potato Fries

Sharon Muse

Sweet potatoes fries are delicious are extremely nutritious - plus, they are really easy to make at home!

Ingredients:

3 large sweet potatoes

1-2 T olive oil

sea or Himalayan salt

chili powder

Instructions:

1.) Preheat oven to 450°. Slice the sweet potatoes into french fries as evenly as possible (this is not as easy as it looks so just do your best).

2.) Place the fries in a large bowl and drizzle olive oil and sprinkle the salt and chili powder over them and toss to evenly distribute.

3.) Place the fries on a cookie sheet that is lined with foil or parchment paper make sure they are not touching each other - this will help them cook more evenly and get a nice crisp.

4.) Place pan in the top third of the oven and bake for 18-20 minutes total and be sure to flip the fries at the halfway point. If you prefer your fries to be a little more crispy, turn oven to broil and move pan to the middle of oven and cook for an additional 3 minutes.

Vegan Chickpea Burgers with Avocado Sauce

Sharon Muse

Some days just call for a burger and fries, you know what I am talking about don't you? But what is a person to do when they no longer eat red meat? Sure you can always have a turkey burger but we have a recipe for a plant-based burger that we think you will love! 

We've all seen black bean burgers so we decided to see how it would taste if we made a chickpea burger - and it was delicious!! Some of you may be wondering what the difference between a chickpea and a garbanzo bean is - not a thing! Click HERE if you want to read more on the history of the legume and how they came to have different names.

We also added shredded carrots, zucchini, and ground flax seed to punch up the nutrition even more. So these burgers boast a great amount of iron, Vitamin B-6, magnesium, and fiber. Plus these burger and the sauce are completely vegan. 

Whether you are vegetarian, vegan or just interested in trying a meatless burger, we really hope you will enjoy these! Try them with our homemade Sweet Potato Fries as well.

makes 6 burgers

Ingredients:

To make the burger:

2 cans chickpeas (garbanzo beans) drained

2 large carrots grated

1 medium zucchini, grated 

1/2 red onion, finely diced

4 tsp. minced garlic

1 T olive oil (more to cook the patties)

1/2 cup oat flour (you can make your own but putting rolled oats in a blender or food processor)

1 tsp. garlic powder

2 tsp. chili powder

1/2 tsp. paprika

1 tsp. Himalayan salt

1/2 tsp. ground pepper

2 T ground flaxseed

1/3 cup water

2 T ground flax seed

To make the Avocado sauce:

1/4 cup Veganaise (vegan mayo)

1/4 cup vegetable broth

1 medium avocado

Juice of one lemon

Additional optional items: buns, lettuce, tomatoes, cheese

Instructions:

1.) Mix the flaxseed and water in a bowl and place in the refrigerator for about 5-10 minutes while you start making the burgers.

2.) Place one tablespoon of olive oil in a pan over medium heat. Add diced onions, carrots, zucchini and garlic and saute until the onions are translucent. Remove from heat and set aside.

3.) Place drained beans in a food processor and pulse leaving some chunks (not pureed). Add the onion mixture and continue to pulse until mixed through. 

4.) Place bean and onion mixture in a large bowl and add the flaxseed and water mixture as well as the oat flour. Add the spices next and mix together.

5.) Make 6 equal sized patties and place on a plate. 

6.) Now make the sauce: In a small bowl, combine the veganaise, broth, avocado, and lemon and whisk together and place in the refrigerator to chill. You can make the sauce ahead of time as well.

7.) In a large sauté pan, heat some olive oil to medium heat. Add the patties, allowing them to cook on each side about 5 minutes. You don't want to overcook them but do want them heated throughout.

8.) Place patties on a bun, top them however you like and add a dollop of the avocado sauce (it's delicious) and enjoy! We served these with homemade sweet potato fries (click HERE for the recipe), also delicious!

 

Fresh Strawberry, Arugula and Quinoa Salad with Lime Dressing

Sharon Muse

As you may have seen from our Instagram posts and stories, we went strawberry picking at Washington Farms last Friday. We had the best time trying to make sure we picked the reddest, shiniest berries and ended up picking a few buckets full. You know us, now that we have our berries, we have to dig in deeper and tell you why these springtime favorites are not only delicious, they are actually really good for you as well.

These ruby-red berries are rich in anti-inflammatory antioxidants, anti-aging flavonoids, vitamins, and minerals. Beta-carotene, which is a precursor to Vitamin A, is responsible for the berry’s beautiful color and Vitamin C is present in the form of ascorbic acid. One cupful of strawberries has over 89% of our daily need of Vitamin A and 149% of Vitamin C. And both of these vitamins bring a ton of anti-aging, anti-inflammatory and immune boosting benefits.

The anti-aging flavonoids, called anthocyanin and catechin have been linked to lowering the risk of heart disease and cancer. So, in addition to strawberries being delicious, there is a really good reason we should be eating them.

We were tired from the day of picking so we whipped up an easy salad using our newest treasures. We added some quinoa for protein but feel free to add some more if you like. If you have time, use some of the dressing to marinate some shrimp or chicken - cook and top over the salad for an even heartier version. We hope you like this salad as much as we do!

makes 2 large entree salads or 3-4 side salads

Ingredients:

5 oz. arugula (already washed)

2 oz. goat cheese, crumbled

1 cup chopped strawberries

½ cup cooked quinoa

¼ cup chopped walnuts

avocado

Lime Dressing:

¼ cup apple cider vinegar

¼ cup olive oil

zest of one lime

2 T lime juice (or the juice of 1.5 limes)

Instructions:

1.) In a mason jar with a lid, place all of the ingredients for the dressing. Place the lid on top and give is several good shakes to emulsify all the ingredients. You can also place all the ingredients in a bowl and whisk to combine.

2)   In a large bowl, place arugula and quinoa and toss evenly.

3.) Top the salad with goat cheese, strawberries, walnuts, and avocado.

4.) Toss with lime dressing – you will have a good bit left over, it makes a great marinade or store in the refrigerator.

5.)  Evenly distribute in bowls or plates and enjoy!

Egg Roll In A Bowl with Tofu

Sharon Muse

We know that making dinner after a long day is not always easy. Sometimes you just want to have dinner delivered - we get it and we are totally guilty of doing that too. But the problem with takeout is you never really know what exactly is in the meal. How much fat did they use? How much sugar is actually in that sauce? And don't get us started about how you might feel afterward - bloated, gassy. Has this ever happened to you? We have a solution - yes, it does involve getting in the kitchen but only for a few minutes and the results are delicious, nutritious and won't leave you feeling poorly. 

We are taking the good part of an egg roll, the veggies - adding in a few other veggies and some tofu - and voila, you have a tasty dinner that will take less time than it does to wait for the delivery person to ring your doorbell!

serves: 2

Ingredients:

Base:

1 bag of broccoli slaw

1/2 of a small head of purple cabbage, thinly sliced

1/2 Cup mushrooms, sliced

1/2 of a red onion, thinly sliced 

1/4 Cup green onion, thinly sliced

1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper

2-3 cloves of garlic, minced 

2-3 T sesame oil

Sauce:

1 T sesame oil

1/4 cup liquid coconut aminos or Tamari (gluten-free soy sauce)

2 tsp. grated ginger

1 tsp. minced garlic

2 T rice wine vinegar

Tofu:

4 oz. extra firm tofu, squeezed and sliced into 4 triangles (or protein of choice)

2-4 T Tamari 

1 tsp. grated ginger

optional topping: sliced green onions, sesame seeds

Instructions:

1.) Place sliced tofu in a bowl and pour some tamari over it and add ginger. Toss to coat and let sit to marinate while you prepare veggies and sauce. Flip once while you are making the veggies.

2.) Add 2 tablespoons of sesame oil to start to a medium-sized sauté pan and heat to medium-high. Add the onion, ginger, garlic, crushed red pepper, broccoli slaw, and cauliflower. If the veggies seem too dry add the additional tablespoon of sesame oil. Stirring often and saute until the veggies are cooked and a little wilted. 

3.) In a small bowl whisk together all of the Sauce ingredients. Pour over sautéed veggies and continue to cook for an additional 3-5 minutes.

4.) While the veggies are cooking start to cook the tofu. Get a smaller sauté pan and heat sesame oil over medium-high. Add marinated tofu and cook on each side to heat through - about 2 - 3 minutes each side.

5.) Divide veggies equally into bowls, add the tofu and top with sliced green onions and sesame seeds if desired and enjoy!

Keto Salmon Cakes with a Citrus Dill Sauce

Sharon Muse

Experimenting with different diets to try and find the perfect one for your body can be fun...when it is at your own will. But when your doctor prescribes a diet, it seems as though your world goes up in flames and you totally forget how to eat. And that is exactly what had happened when the ketogenic diet was highly recommended to us. Oddly enough, we both were urged to try the keto diet by our doctors but at different times and in the beginning it left us feeling lost and like we could never eat anything delicious again. For those of you wondering, the keto diet is high fat, moderate protein, and low carb in hopes that you can get your body to go into ketosis where it burns fat for fuel instead of carbs. Also, removing majority of carbs from your diet can help with internal inflammation. Samantha was most recently "prescribed" this diet, but also had the limitation of no dairy. And that is what lead us to this amazing recipe!

Most of the time when you see salmon cakes or burgers they are filled with unnecessary ingredients that can take a toll on your body's internal functions. These salmon cakes are gluten free, dairy free, paleo, and meet all the requirements of a keto meal. Wild caught salmon may be one of the healthiest foods out there because of all the health benefits it provides to your entire body.  We want to urge "wild caught" salmon because the nutritional benefits are different from farm raised salmon. Wild caught salmon has a number of benefits for the entire body, many of them resulting from salmon’s amazing amount of omega-3 fatty acids. For example, foods rich in omega-3 are shown to increase the efficiency of various brain functions, including improved memory and can help prevent and treat Alzheimer’s disease. Omega-3 fatty acids also aid in heart health, healthy skin and cancer defense. These are just a few reason to regularly incorporate salmon into your diet and these salmon cakes will help you do that!

We took these salmon cakes on a taste test run and made them for a few of our friends, and wow, they were a hit! Everyone fell in love. This recipe is extremely easy to make and it's great because you will have left overs for lunch the next day. For us, the best part about this meal is that is fills you up and keeps you feeling satisfied for a long time. So it cuts out the urge, (we occasionally, not so occaionally get) to deviate from the keto diet. We served our salmon cakes over a simple salad with diced tomatoes and avocado. If you aren't limiting carbs, these can be made into delicious salmon burgers served on sprouted grain buns topped with all your favorite condiments and toppings. Either way, they won't disappoint! 

makes 7-8 patties

Ingredients:

1 lbs. of fresh, wild caught salmon

1/8 cup olive oil (plus 1-2 T to cook the patties)

1/2 small onion, diced finely

1 red bell pepper, diced finely

2 garlic cloves

1/2 - 3/4 cup almond flour**

2 eggs beaten

2 T mayonnaise (we used Fabanaise which is vegan)

1 T Dijon mustard

2 T dried parsley

2 T fresh dill, chopped

salt & pepper

Citrus Dill Sauce:

1 cup mayonnaise (can use plain greek yogurt if you like)

1 lemon, zested and juiced

1-2 T chopped fresh dill

salt & pepper

Instructions:

1.) Preheat oven 425°. On a sheet pan lined with parchment paper, pour the 1/8 cup olive oil over salmon and sprinkle with salt and pepper and roast for 10-15 minutes.

2.) As the salmon bakes, dice the bell pepper and onion and chop the dill

3.) Let the salmon cool for a bit and then with two forks, flake the salmon apart and make sure to pick out any bones. Once you are finished put the flaked salmon on a plate and cool in the refrigerator for about 10-15 minutes.

4.) While the salmon is cooling, make the Citrus Dill Sauce by combining all the ingredients in a bowl and whisk together and set aside.

5.) In a medium-sized bowl, add **1/2 cup of almond flour (see note) and the rest of the ingredients. Mix together thoroughly. and form into 7-8 patties. 

6.) Heat olive oil in a large saute pan and cook the patties 4-5 minutes on each side.

7.) We placed the patty on top of mixed greens, chopped tomatoes, and chopped avocado. Pour the citrus dill sauce over and enjoy!

* Extra salmon cakes will last up to 4 days in the fridge and can be frozen. Reheat on an oiled skillet for 5 minutes.

**NOTE: If the salmon mixture seems too moist add more almond flour to get the mixture to form patties, adding in one tablespoon at a time until the right consistency is achieved to form a patty.

 

10 Minute Avocado Pesto Zucchini Noodles with Blackened Shrimp

Sharon Muse

There are so many nights where we are completely pooped and the last thing we want to do is cook dinner. We are constantly trying to come up with recipes that take minimal effort and time because lets face it, a bowl of cereal is just not going to cut it. On the days we are tired and feeling run down, there is no better feeling than going to sleep full and knowing we gave our bodies the nutrients to power forward the next day.

This Avocado Pesto Zucchini Noodle dish is the perfect remedy for those long days. It can be made in 10 minutes and the avocado pesto sauce only contains SIX ingredients! Besides being extremely convenient, this dish has some pretty awesome health benefits. It is filled with heart healthy monounsaturated fats from the avocados and olive oil. Monounsaturated fats, also known as oleic acid, is believed to help reduce inflammation, and may have beneficial effects on genes linked to cancer. Avocados are high in fiber, low in carbs, and contain more than 20 vitamins and minerals, making them an amazing food for the health conscious eater. It has been shown that diets high in fat have been linked to weight loss since they keep you fuller longer, allowing you to consume less calories while still being satisfied. 

We decided to add some blackened shrimp on top to give this dish a boost of protein, but it also adds a wonderful spicy flavor that perfectly compliments the creaminess of the avocado pesto. Being high in fat, moderate protein, and low in carbs this dish is suitable for anyone who is following the ketogenic or low carb diet. If you opt not to sauté the zucchini to warm it up then it will be a completely raw meal (minus the shrimp of course). Taking the shrimp off will also make it vegan friendly! 

This dish is definitely on our top 5 list of quick, easy, and delicious meals, we hope it becomes one of your go-tos on the night when you "just can't" any longer.

serves 4

Ingredients:

For Blackened Shrimp:

1 pound of peeled and deveined shrimp

1-2 T olive oil

1 tsp. garlic powder

1/2 tsp. onion powder

1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper, ground

1/4 tsp. dried oregano

1/4 tsp. dried basil

2 tsp. smoked paprika

1/2 tsp. ground thyme

1/2 tsp. salt

For Pesto Pasta:

4 medium zucchinis

1 cup fresh basil packed loosely

2 ripe avocados

1/4 cup pine nuts

2 cloves of garlic

1/4 cup olive oil + 2 T for sautéing 

1 lemon, juiced

salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

1.) Combine all the spices for the blackened seasoning in a bowl or mason jar and stir to combine. In a larger bowl, place shrimp and drizzle with 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil or until coated. Add blackened seasoning and toss until shrimp is completely covered. Place in refrigerator until ready to cook.

2.) Using a spiralizer, make zucchini noodles. Place on a clean kitchen towel or paper towels and squeeze out any extra moisture.

3.) To make the pesto, combine the basil, avocado, pine nuts, garlic, 1/4 cup of olive oil and lemon juice in a food processor or high-speed blender. Pulse or blend on high until smooth - taste and now add in salt and pepper to your liking.

4.) In a large cast iron skillet, heat 1 Tbsp. of olive and add shrimp. Sauté until they become a pinkish color and are no longer translucent.

5.) As shrimp is cooking, heat 1 Tbsp. of olive in a separate skillet. Add zucchini noodles and let cook 1-2 minutes. Then add the avocado pesto, mixing until all the noodles are coated.

6.) Place noodles in a bowl and top with blackened shrimp. Enjoy!

 

 

 

Homemade Gluten and Grain Free Pizza Dough, Made with Cassava Flour

Sharon Muse

There are many reasons to make your own pizza crust! It is quick and easy. It's actually a lot of fun. You can also add in flavors that you love so it can be customized to your tastes. Plus you know exactly what is going into your dinner.

A lot of people we know (including us) try to avoid grains when we can but that can leave us feeling deprived. Who wants to go through life without pizza? Not us, so we thought about using cassava flour as the base for pizza crust and let me tell you - the results are delicious! You may remember we used cassava flour to make delicious gluten and grain-free tortillas, you can read all about the benefits of cassava flour and get that recipe HERE.

We think this pizza crust is perfect for a casual Valentine's Day dinner with your sweetie or make it the day before and invite your girlfriends over for Galentine's Day (yep, it's really a thing) - whenever you decide to make this pizza crust, trust us, you will be glad you did!

Serving size: 2 single size pizza crusts

Ingredients:

3/4 cup Casava Flour

1/4 cup arrowroot flour

1 T coconut flour

1 T coconut sugar

1/2 tsp. garlic powder

1/2 tsp. dried basil*

1/2 tsp. dried and minced rosemary*

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. salt (we used Himalayan Salt but any will do)

1/4 cup ghee (soften grass-fed butter will work too)

1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk (any dairy-free milk will work)

1 T flax seed ground

freshly cracked pepper to taste

(*feel free to play around with the dried herbs to suit your taste)

Topping: you can use whatever you like, we topped one pizza with tomato sauce, roasted vegetables, mozzarella cheese, and dolloped with sun-dried tomato pesto. The other we first topped with ricotta (about 1/4 cup) and a sprinkle of mozzarella cheese and baked for 5-7 minutes. Then once out of the oven we topped it with arugula and parmesan cheese, squeezed lemon juice over it and drizzled some olive oil.

Instructions:

1.) Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Like a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2.) Combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl and mix together. At some point, you will need to get in there with your hands and knead the dough until all the flour is mixed in.

3.) Split the dough in half and cover one piece while you are rolling out the other.

4.) Between two pieces of parchment paper, roll out the dough until it is thin. If you like a thicker crust, you will just need to bake it longer. Place on a parchment-lined baking sheet and repeat with the other piece of dough.

5.) Bake your crust for 10-12 minutes then flip the pizza crust and bake fore an additional 10-12 minutes. This can vary depending on how thick or thin you roll your crust.

6.) Remove the crust from the oven and top however you like. (Get creative - this is a great time to sneak veggies in!). Top with cheese of choice and bake for another 5-7 minutes until the cheese is melted. Let it cool for a few minutes, slice and enjoy!

Vegan Cauliflower Tacos with a Spicy Avocado Sauce

Samantha Serpe

Did you really think that we were going to give you guys a recipe for tortillas but not give you a recipe for tacos?! In case you missed it, last week we provided a recipe for Gluten Free, Grain Free, and Nut Free Tortillas that are absolutely delicious! The secret ingredient that we used to make these tortillas paleo friendly was cassava flour. It is super similar to wheat flour in consistency which made it so easy to create the recipe, but it comes from the cassava root, also known as yucca (very similar to a potato). So now that we have these awesome tortillas laying around there was only one thing we could do...make tacos! Cue the tequila because we're having a Mexican themed dinner tonight!

We love these tacos because they give you all the flavors and taste of traditional Mexican food, but they don't leave you feeling heavy and weighed down. Plus they are vegan and will still fill your belly while giving you some key nutrients. One serving of cauliflower contains 77 percent of the recommended daily value of vitamin C. It's rich in vitamins and minerals containing vitamin K, protein, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, magnesium, phosphorus, fiber, vitamin B6, folate, pantothenic acid, potassium, and manganese. Since cauliflower has beneficial effects on numerous aspects of health, it can easily be considered a superfood.

Chickpeas are a great source of protein if you are vegetarian or vegan. The fiber in the chickpeas plus plant-based protein will keep you fuller longer. That combined slows down your digestion which is what keeps your blood sugar level stable. They are also high in iron and manganese which contributes to healthy bone structure and assists metabolic activity. 

We are huge fans of pickled red onions due the impact they can have on your gut. According to Dr. Axe, "pickling is a form of fermantation, a process that turns the sugar and carbs naturally found in foods into friendly bacteria. These bacteria help to break down ingredients in the food when you eat them, improving digestion." This good bacteria helps boost your immune system by fighting off the bad bacteria and creating a line of defense against pathogens. In the recipe particularly, the pickled red onions add a delightful sweet and salty punch of flavor to the tacos! 

Call all of your friends over, whip of a batch of margaritas and serve these amazing vegan tacos for your next taco night!

Servings: 6 tacos

Ingredients:

Pickled Red Onions: 

We followed the recipe fro Dr. Axe. Click HERE for the recipe

1 red onion, thinly sliced

½–1 cup apple cider vinegar

1 cup warm water

1 tablespoon maple sugar

1½ teaspoons kosher salt

Spicy Avocado Sauce:

1 Large avocado

2 - 3 limes, juiced 

1 medium jalapeño, deseeded, membranes removed and roughly chopped (you can leave some seeds if you prefer it spicier)

1 handful fresh cilantro

1/4 tsp. sea salt

Taco Filling:

1 medium sized cauliflower head, chopped into small florets

1 15 oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

2 T olive oil or coconut oil

1 T ground turmeric

½ T garlic powder

1 tsp ground paprika

1 tsp ground cumin

1 lime, juiced

Seal Salt and pepper to taste

Taco Shells:

 Gluten Free, Grain Free, and Nut Free Tortillas 

Instructions:

1.) To make pickled onions: Mix vinegar, water, maple sugar, and salt together in a bowl. Place sliced onions in a mason jar or air tight container. Pour vinegar mixture over onions until they are completely covered. Set aside at room temperature for 1-2 hours. Cover and refrigerate for up to 3 weeks.

2.) To make the Spicy Avocado Sauce: Place all ingredients into a high speed blender and blend until well combined and smooth. If it is too thick, add more lime juice. If you like it extra spicy add a few of the jalapeño seeds. Set aside or refrigerate if you don't plan on using it right away.

3.) To make the Taco Filling: heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once heated, add cauliflower and sauté until cauliflower is tender, about 10 minutes. Add chickpeas and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes and reduce heat to medium/medium-low. Add in spices and lime juice and cook for another 5 minutes.

4.) Fill the tortillas. Start with the spicy avocado sauce, spreading it on the tortilla. Add taco filling and top with pickled onions. If desired add a squeeze of fresh lime juice and chopped cilantro. you can even add salsa if you have it! 

Gluten Free, Grain Free, and Nut Free Tortillas

Samantha Serpe

There's nothing we love more than recreating our favorite foods with a healthy twist! Everyone loves a good Mexican night at home so we decided to give the classic flour tortilla a makeover. We took out all the processed ingredients and made them with whole foods and superfoods. The best part of these tortillas is that they only have 6 ingredients and can be made quickly!

Now you may be wondering how these tortillas are gluten free, grain free, and nut free and that is all due to the cassava flour we used. If you have yet to hear about cassava flour, it is starting to pick up momentum as the go-to gluten free flour. It is most similar in consistency to wheat flour and unlike other gluten-free flours such as almond or coconut flour, cassava flour is very mild and neutral in flavor. 

So what exactly is cassava? Cassava, also known as yuca, is a plant from the tuberous root vegetable family and it is a staple crop in South America and parts of Asia and Africa. It is a starchy, high-carbohydrate tuber – similar to yam, taro, plantains and potato. We love Otto’s Cassava Flour because it uses the entire cassava root (after it has been peeled, washed, sliced, pressed, baked, and then milled), meaning it is a whole food flour. Unlike tapioca flour (a.k.a. tapioca starch), cassava flour uses the entire root instead of just a separated starch, so it keeps the fiber, protein, starch, vitamins, and minerals that would otherwise be lost in making tapioca flour. Cassava flour is a great source of fiber, vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin K, and folate. As we mentioned, cassava flour is high in carbohydrates (80g per cup) so it may spike insulin levels. Despite it being high in carbohydrates, we still believe it is a great gluten free substitution for normal flour, but moderation is definitely key!

These tortillas are perfect for your next taco night or can even be made into tortilla chips for some nice guac and salsa! This recipe will definitely "wow" all your friends and family.

Ingredients:

1 Cup cassava flour (we love Otto’s Cassava Flour)

1/2 T chia seeds

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1/4 cup plain almond or coconut milk

1/4 warm water

1 tsp. sea salt

Instructions:

1.) In a bowl, first combine cassava flour, chia seeds, and salt. Then add extra virgin olive oil, almond milk, and water. Combine until it starts to resemble dough, it should be sticky enough to stay together, but not sticky to where it sticks to your fingers. If it seems to dry add more water and if it too wet add a little more flour.

2.) Divide dough evenly into 6 pieces and form into small balls.

3.) Roll out one ball at a time with a rolling pin in between two pieces of parchment paper sprinkled with a little flour. You may have to reshape into a circle. 

4.) Heat a skillet over medium-high heat. Once warm, place flattened dough on skillet and cook until the top starts to bubble and bottom starts to brown. Flip and cook until the other side starts to brown, should be around 2-3 minutes. Place cooked tortilla between a dampened cloth or paper towels. Repeat until they are all cooked. Use immediately or store in the fridge or the freezer.

5.) If you want to make tortilla chips, preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Cut tortillas into wedges and place them into a bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Spread wedges out evenly on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Cook for 18-20 minutes until chips are golden brown, flipping halfway through. 

4 Post Holiday Detox Smoothies

Samantha Serpe

all four smoothies.jpg

We all know the holiday season means letting loose and overindulging a bit and to be honest, that's what makes it so fun! But by the end of the month, we are totally ready to get back to our normal lifestyle where we look, and most importantly, FEEL our best.

For some January is a time for renewal, a time to try to reset your life especially when it comes to nutrition. For others, January is a time of stress because there is so much pressure put on us to be something that we weren’t just last month. Let us just say this first, you are just as perfect and wonderful today as you were last month and the month before that! We like to use January as a total reset button for our minds and our bodies and sometimes we need a little extra help to get back to where we were before the holidays.

And that's where smoothies come in! We have 4 different detox smoothies for you that each serve a different purpose in resetting your body and getting all your organs and internal systems functioning optimally again! We suggest replacing one meal a day with a smoothie for a week, limit or remove sugar and processed foods as well as exercise 4-5 times a week to help jumpstart your New Year goals and get your body feeling great again. And remember to always listen to your body! Don't be afraid to rest when you are tired and eat when you're hungry!

For each smoothie, all you have to do is throw all the ingredients into a high-speed blender and then enjoy! They are especially great if you are on the run and can't sit down to enjoy a meal!

 

1.) Green Detox Smoothie

When you give your body an abundance of nutrients it will help flush toxins out of your body. This smoothie is full of vitamins, antioxidants, fiber, and other healthful nutrients giving your body a detoxifying flush. Chia seeds and avocados are a great tool to help do this; the fats keep bile levels up and help get rid of the toxins in our system and the fiber carries these toxins out. 

Cucumbers, on the other hand, are really hydrating for the body, which is perfect after a month of indulging in dehydrating foods and drink. It also supports the digestive system and helps to reduce inflammation. Ginger has a very strong flavor but if you can tolerate it, it is great for reducing inflammation in the body. It has also been shown to lower blood sugar levels. So, if you struggle to keep your blood sugar stable, consider adding ginger to your smoothies, juices or meals.

Ingredients:

½ frozen avocado (freezing it makes the smoothie creamier)

a handful of spinach

½ peeled cucumber (can leave skin on if your blender can handle it)

½ inch peeled ginger

½ cup frozen mango 

1 T chia seeds

½ cup almond milk

1 T maple syrup

 

2.) Orange Creamsicle

All the sugar consumed during the Holidays can really take a toll on our immune system, well that and all the endless parties and overcommitting ourselves. We all know oranges are a great source of vitamin C, which helps boost our immune system, but they also have a lot of fiber, potassium (know to reduce high blood pressure), folate and vitamin A! And Pineapples contain bromelain which combats inflammation in the body. 

Ingredients:

2 oranges, peeled

½ cup frozen pineapple

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract (optional)

1 scoop vanilla protein powder (we used Perfect Fit)

 

3.) Liver Cleansing Smoothie

Before we even go into the benefits of this smoothie we need to acknowledge that, yes, it sounds weird and yes, beets can occasional taste like the earth. But we need to emphasize how important the liver is to our everyday life! "When working properly, the liver clears 99% of the bacteria and other toxins during the first pass. However, when the liver is damaged, such as in alcoholics, the passage of toxins increases by over a factor of 10". So that being said, we felt it necessary to give you a smoothie to help recover the liver from all that extra wine this month.

Beets, while not a favorite of everyone, definitely deserve a shout out when trying to detox from a month of parties and pastries. They contain a very powerful antioxidant only found in only a few foods called betalains. This is where the beets get their color and betalains work directly with the liver to detox the blood. Dandelion greens have been shown as an antioxidant that lowers blood sugar and they may also help in strengthening bones with the high amount of vitamin K they have.

We absolutely love MCT oil (MCT stands for Medium Chain Triglycerides) for all the health benefits it offers. Dr. Axe says,  “medium-chain fats are digested easily and sent directly to your liver, where they have a thermogenic effect and the ability to positively alter your metabolism.” If you would like to read more about the health benefits of MCT oil, please click HERE.

Ingredients:

¾ cup peeled and cooked beets

1 carrot peeled if not organic

Handful of dandelion greens

1 apple

juice of ½ of a lemon

1 T MCT oil

½ cup water

 

4.) Berry Good Detox Smoothie

This is smoothie has many detoxifying elements such as fiber, antioxidants, omega 3 fatty acids, vitamin C, folic acid, phytonutrients, and more! 

Cherries are known to support sleep while detoxing because they are a good source of melatonin. They are high in potassium and fiber and shown to be anti-inflammatory. Kale contains vitamins A and C, protein and phytonutrients that act as antioxidants as well as it is a good source of fiber. Hemp seeds help to alkalize the body while providing plant-based protein, omega 3 healthy fats and are high in fiber and minerals. And finally, pomegranate juice contains a powerhouse antioxidant that support the immune system.

Ingredients:

½ cup frozen cherries

½ cup frozen blueberries

handful of kale (stems removed)

½ cup frozen pineapple

1 T hemp seeds

½-3/4 cup pomegranate juice

 

Southwestern Stuffed Sweet Potatoes with Chipotle Cashew Vegan Sauce

Sharon Muse

We are totally experiencing a Christmas hangover this week. After a long week of preparing for the holiday and then traveling, spending it with family, eating way too many Christmas cookies, and having one too many glasses of wine, we barely know what day it is (sigh). And we know that we are not alone so we are giving you guys a super easy recipe you can quickly whip up for lunch or dinner that will also nourish your body.

These Southwestern Stuffed Sweet Potatoes are beyond delicious. Then top them off with our Chipotle Cashew Sauce, they are even better - can you say YUM?! Sweet potatoes are the main stars of this dish, containing many vitamins and minerals that will help your post-holiday hangover body recover. They are high in fiber and magnesium and the combination of those will help your body digest food better. Sweet potatoes also contain beta-carotene and vitamin C and that on top of the magnesium, it helps treat inflammation in your body as well as strengthen your immune system. And the benefits of sweet potatoes don't stop there! They are also a great source of vitamins B-6 and D and contain iron and potassium that help your blood sugar neutralize so it doesn't spike. Black beans also play a huge role in this dish, not only do they add great flavor but they are a great source of protein as well as vitamins and minerals. Black beans contain a good amount of iron, calcium, magnesium, and zinc which will help you maintain your bone strength and elasticity. 

So if you're feeling tired, beat down, and little unmotivated this is a great recipe that will give your body what it needs with minimal effort. We hope you enjoy it as much as we did!

Ingredients:

4 large sweet potatoes

1 T olive oil

1/2 medium onion, diced

1 15 oz. can of black beans, drained and rinsed

1 can diced tomatoes, drained

1/2 cup frozen corn, thawed drained

Sauce:

1 cup cashews, soaked in water for at least 2 hours (or overnight) or boiled for 10 minutes

1 cup vegetable broth

1 clove garlic

1/4 tsp. chipotle powder 

juice of 1/2 lime

Instructions:

1.) Preheat oven to 400°. Wash sweet potatoes and make a small slit at the top of each potato. Place directly on the oven racks or on a cookie sheet and roast for about 45 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.

2.) To make the sauce, drain the cashews and place in a food processor. Add vegetable broth, garlic, lime juice, chipotle powder, and process until smooth. Add more vegetable broth if you like a thinner sauce and set aside.

3.) Heat a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add olive oil and onions and cook until translucent, about 3-4 minutes. Add black beans, drained can of diced tomatoes and thawed corn and heat through.

4.) Once your sweet potatoes are done, widen the slit on the top and fluff with a fork. Equally, spoon the black bean mixture into each potato and drizzle the sauce over it and enjoy! You will have leftover sauce that would be delicious on almost anything!

 

 

 

Acorn Squash Salad Bowl

Sharon Muse

Thanksgiving is such a special time for family and friends and it is also filled with tons of delicious food. And 9 times out of 10 that food is loaded with fat, salt and preservatives, hence why people tend to put on a few lbs during the holiday season. While we love our traditions here at Sage and Celery, we also believe in balance. So while we like to indulge a little at our Thanksgiving dinner, we love to include a few healthy options for not only ourselves but our entire family. This dish may be missing the unhealthy fat, sugar, and salt but it certainly is not missing the taste. And as an added bonus, you won't even need a serving dish - this salad is served right inside the squash! So when you are finished, you can simply add it to the compost pile.

For the salad, we sautéed shaved brussel sprouts, not only because they are high in Vitamins K and C but they are also delicious. We paired them with thinly sliced apples and then we made this dish even better by adding nutrient-dense quinoa, walnuts, and dried cranberries.  Quinoa is considered a complete protein since it has all 9 essential amino acids so this salad is great for vegans looking to add a little protein to their meal (if you want to read more about the health benefits of quinoa, click here). When then used a half roasted acorn squash as the bowl for the salad, and let us tell you, it is SO delicious. This salad gives you everything you'd ever want in one dish: savory, sweet, crunchy and buttery textures. You'll satisfy your non-meat eaters while wow-ing the rest of your family with this perfect Thanksgiving side dish!

Using an acorn squash as a bowl is a super fun way to incorporate a fall vegetable while adding nutrients and flavor to a dish. In fact, acorn squash is found to have significant quantities of Vitamin A and C. If you need help with how to roast the acorn squash and want to learn a little more about its nutritional information, click here

We hope you enjoy this as much as we do!

Servings: 2

Ingredients:

1 acorn squash cut in half and roasted 

1/3 cup dried cranberries - no added sugar

1/2 cup cooked quinoa

2 cups shaved Brussel sprouts

1/2 small red onion, diced

 1 granny smith apple, thinly sliced

1/4 cup chopped walnuts

2 T olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

balsamic glaze, optional

Instructions:

1.) Preheat oven to 400°. Refer to How to Roast an Acorn Squash post if needed. Be sure to scoop out enough squash to form a bowl. Roast squash in halves for 35-45 minutes.

2.) In a medium to large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add onions and sauté until translucent then add sliced apples and brussel sprouts, stirring frequently.

3.) Put a lid on top and let it cook for about 5 minutes, checking to stir to prevent burning.

4.) Add in cooked quinoa, cranberries, nut and stir to combine. Add salt and pepper to taste.

5.) Remove squash from the oven and fill with brussel sprout and quinoa mix. Drizzle with balsamic glaze if desired.

 

Jack-O-Lantern Stuffed Peppers

Sharon Muse

We absolutely love Halloween, well really any holiday that gives us an excuse to get festive and creative! With Halloween especially, there is something so fun about decorating and getting to use all of the symbols (maybe its tapping into our dark side, who knows). In the weeks leading up to October 31st, we try to incorporate the Halloween fun any way we can. We know there is a really good chance that you have made stuffed peppers before, but why not turn them into a festive dinner for your family and friends to enjoy?

As we get older we have realized some of the fun gets taken out of this holiday, especially if you don't have kids. And we want to insert the fun back into our lives and that is why we love having a small Halloween party with our girlfriends. Think pajamas instead of costumes, wine instead of juice, and healthy fulfilling meals instead of sugar-filled foods and candy. It's the perfect girls night, with a Halloween twist! This year our main dish for the night is going to be these adorable, fun jack-o-lantern stuffed peppers! They are not only vegan but are also filled with nutrients that will keep you satisfied as you paint your chic pumpkin or watch a classic scary movie. And the best part is, they are kid friendly so you can even get your kids involved in making them! They are such a healthy option to fill your tummies before heading out to Trick-or-Treat! These jack-o-lantern stuffed bell peppers are easy to make and can also be made earlier in the day.

Since we know the rest of the evening may be spent eating fun-sized candy bars (no judgment, we will be eating a few of these ourselves), this dish will fill your tummy with goodness before heading out for the evening. Orange bell peppers are the star of this show and for good reason. Not only do they make the perfect edible pumpkins, bell peppers are filled with Vitamins A and C and have a good amount of Vitamin E - all of these are great for your skin and of course, Vitamin C is also helps keep your immune system strong.

We filled the peppers with our own homemade taco spice mixture to give it a southwestern flare and then added quinoa, black beans and lots of other veggies. Quinoa, you may remember from other posts, is considered a complete protein since it has all nine essential amino acids. And black beans are good for us as well! They are loaded in dietary fiber and contain over half your daily needs of potassium, iron, and magnesium. 

You can really stuff these peppers with anything you like, or add meat if that's your thing, but we love this recipe! It's easy, super nutritious and perfect for Halloween party or a pre-game meal before you hit the streets for trick-or-treating!

Ingredients:

4-6 orange bell peppers (depending on their size)

2 T olive oil

1 red onion, diced

1 tsp. minced garlic (2 cloves)

1 cup mushrooms, chopped

1 can black beans (15 oz.), drained

1 can diced tomatoes (15 oz.)

1 cup frozen corn, thawed

1 cup cooked quinoa

1 T taco seasoning (homemade - see below* or can use packaged kind)

1 T nutritional yeast

Topping: sliced avocados - optional 

* Taco Seasoning:

2 T chili powder

2 1/4 tsp. paprika

2 tsp. onion powder

1 tsp. garlic powder

1 1/2 tsp. salt

*Combine all spices together and store in a small airtight glass container. You will only need a tablespoon for this recipe, store the rest and use for taco night.

Instructions:

1.) Preheat oven to 350°. In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil to medium-high heat. Add onions and cook until translucent, about 3-5 minutes. Add garlic and allow to sauté for 30 seconds and quickly add in mushrooms. Stir to ensure your garlic doesn't burn and continue to cook until the mushrooms cook down.

2.) Add in drained black beans, diced tomatoes, thawed corn and cooked quinoa. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon taco seasoning and stir to incorporate. 

3.) Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of nutritional yeast, stir and remove from heat.

4.) Cut the tops off the peppers and carefully scoop out the seeds and veins, discard the seeds and veins but be sure to keep the top of the peppers. With a paring knife or another sharp knife, cut out your jack-o-lantern face - get creative here, your family will love this! Prepare a 9" x 9" dish with cooking spray or line the dish with parchment paper. 

5.) Carefully scoop the black bean mixture into each of the prepared bell peppers and place in dish, place the top of the bell pepper on top of each stuffed pepper. Place in preheated oven and roast until peppers are heated through, about 25-30 minutes. Serve with tops on or sliced avocados on top and enjoy!

Sweet and Spicy Tofu Veggie Stir-fry Bowl

Sharon Muse

Let's be honest, we have all ordered our fair share of Chinese take-out food and we all know that it never ends well for our stomachs. It either leaves you feeling bloated and gassy or sends you straight to see your dear friend John (if you know what we mean). Take-out Chinese food is usually LOADED with sodium and a lot of the food is fried. Yes, even those delicious vegetables! A plate of General Tso’s chicken, for example, is loaded with about 40 percent more sodium and more than half the calories an average adult needs for an entire day! And raise your hand if you ever wondered if you're really eating chicken or if it's some mystery meat...yup, us too.

Now if we are still being honest we have to admit that despite knowing how unhealthy Chinese take-out is, we still crave it time to time. But instead of falling victim to those cravings we've taken matters into our own hands and have started to recreate our favorites. As we know with any type of food, it is always best to make it yourself. This way you get to control the quality of ingredients as well as how much sodium and sugar is being used.

And that is how we came upon this delicious rice bowl of sweet and spicy tofu and veggies. We used fresh, high-quality ingredients and made sure the sodium and sugar levels weren't too high. We also opted to use tofu instead of meat to keep this meal mostly plant-based. Tofu is a great alternative to meat being that it's cholesterol free, low in sodium, and high in protein and contains all eight essential amino acids It is also an excellent source of iron and calcium and the minerals manganese, selenium and phosphorous.

But we believe that not all tofu is created equally. Since soy is one of the most commonly genetically modified foods in the world and tofu being primarily made from soybeans, it is super important that you find a brand that is non-GMO. We personally only buy organic sprouted tofu. Now you may be wondering, "what is the world in the difference?" Simply put, regular tofu is made from whole soybeans, but sprouted tofu is made with sprouted soybeans. When beans or seeds are sprouted they're more nutritious and easier to digest than the regular beans and seeds. Sprouted tofu may be higher in calories and, but it also has double the protein and calcium. So it is a total win in our book! Wildwood Organic is the only company we found that makes sprouted tofu and we found ours at our local Whole Foods.

This stir-fry bowl is totally customizable to your preferences so if you have a favorite veggie feel free to toss it in! Also, the good news is that if you are a complete carnivore and simply can't stand tofu, it is extremely easy to sub chicken in for the tofu. All you have to do is take the tofu out and sauté a boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into small pieces and then add it in when you mix the veggies in with the sauce.

So say goodbye to your favorite Chinese take-out restaurant and say hello to this delicious and healthy stir fry bowl!


Servings: 2-3

Ingredients:

Bowl:

8 oz. tofu, cubed

5 oz. shitake mushrooms, sliced

1 red pepper, thinly sliced

3/4 cup asparagus, chopped

2 T sesame oil

2 T arrowroot powder 

1 cup of cooked brown rice

Sauce:

1 T arrowroot

1/4 cup low sodium tamari

2 T rice vinegar

2 T sesame oil

1/4 cup honey

1 T minced ginger

2 tsp. minced garlic

2 T sesame oil

1/4 cup honey

1-2 T Sriracha (depending on how spicy you like your food)

Optional Toppings:

White sesame seeds

Sliced scallions 

Instructions:

1.) First make sure to squeeze excess liquid from tofu cubes as well as the bell pepper slices. In a large bowl place tofu, red peppers, mushrooms, and asparagus with 2 T arrowroot and toss, making sure everything is evenly coated with the arrowroot powder.

2.) In a wok or large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of sesame oil on medium-high heat and sauté the tofu veggie mixture about 5-6 minutes until crisp but tender. Transfer onto a plate while you make the sauce.

3.) In a small bowl, add rice vinegar, tamari and 1 tablespoon of arrowroot. Stir to dissolve and set aside.

4.) Add 2 tablespoons of sesame oil to the wok on medium heat. Add minced ginger and garlic and sauté about 30 seconds to a minute. Add honey and bring mixture to a low boil. Reduce heat then add the Sriracha and the contents of the small bowl of rice vinegar, tamari, and dissolved arrowroot. Stirring to mix well and until the sauce starts to thicken.

5.) Toss vegetable/tofu mixture back into the wok and stir to combine with sauce. Serve over brown rice and top with sesame seeds and scallions. Enjoy!

Delicious Anti-Inflammatory Vegetable Soup

Sharon Muse

Lately, we've been hearing a lot about inflammation. So, what actually is inflammation and why are we hearing so much about it? Let us explain a little bit. There are two different kinds of inflammation responses in the body, acute and chronic. Acute inflammation is the kind when you get a cut and it becomes red and swollen. Our bodies send white blood cells to protect the area - this is a natural and healthy response from our body.

What we are talking about is chronic inflammation. This happens when your immune system is permanently turned on and your body releases a flood of chemicals that can actually be dangerous. This can be caused by a number of reasons such as environmental toxins, excess weight, poor diet, stress, lack of exercise, excessive use of alcohol, smoking and more. Research shows that chronic inflammation is linked to many diseases such as cancer, heart disease, Alzheimer's, depression and more. Learn more about chronic inflammation here.

The good news is that we can do a lot to help ourselves in terms of chronic inflammation. What we eat plays a big role. Certain foods are actually considered anti-inflammatory like Swiss Chard, Broccoli, Beets, Celery and two ingredients that we have included in this soup: Turmeric and Bone Broth.

Turmeric's primary compound is curcumin, which is an active anti-inflammatory component. Research shows that curcumin can be more potent than aspirin or ibuprofen. Bone Broth contains minerals that your body can easily absorb. These minerals contain chondroitin sulphates and glucosamine which help reduce inflammation, arthritis and joint pain. 

This recipe is very flexible and you can add in even more anti-inflammatory ingredients like celery and swiss chard - make it your own and know that this soup not only tastes good, it is good for you!

Ingredients:

1 head of cauliflower, riced in a food processor or purchase a 1# bag of already riced cauliflower

1.5 T ground Turmeric

1.5 T curry

1 tsp. garlic powder

1/2 tsp. cumin

1/2 tsp. paprika

1/4 - 1/2 tsp. Himalayan sea salt

3-4 T olive oil

1/2 - 1 cup diced sweet onion

1 clove of garlic, minced

large handful of chopped kale (stems removed)

2 cups diced carrots

4 cups chicken bone broth (if vegan or vegetarian, use vegetable broth)

1/2 - 1 cup vegetable broth 

2 cups coconut milk (the drinking version works better than the canned) or unsweetened almond milk

1/2 red pepper flakes (optional)

additional salt & pepper to taste

Instructions:

1.)  In a large stockpot, drizzle olive oil and place on medium-high heat. Add onions and sauté until they are translucent. Then add garlic and sauté another 30 seconds. 

2.) In a small bowl mix the spices together (from Turmeric through sea salt). In a large bowl toss spice mixture over riced cauliflower and toss to combine. 

3.) Add cauliflower mixed with spices to the stock pot and sauté for a few minutes until the cauliflower is a little tender (if you need more olive oil here then add about 1-2 teaspoons). Add diced carrots, kale, both the bones broth and vegetable broth and milk. If using, add the crushed red pepper flakes.

4.) Bring to a boil and then simmer for about 20 minutes. Be careful to not stay at a boil too long so you don't burn the milk. This is a great time to taste to make sure the carrots are cooked and the spices are the way you like. Once you have everything to your liking, enjoy this anti-inflammatory soup!

Healthy Homemade Veggie Pasta Sauce

Samantha Serpe

Do you ever find yourself with a ton of vegetables in your refrigerator that you never got to use? Well we are right there with you, it seems as though we either don't have enough fresh produce or we end up throwing a majority of it away (we are still working on finding that happy balance). We recently found ourselves with a bunch of summer veggies we never got to use, but this time instead of throwing them away we decided to put them to use in a delicious vegetable filled pasta sauce! We don't always eat pasta, but when we do it is heavily packed with veggies.

One of the best things about this dish (besides getting to use all the produce in our fridge) is that the linguine is made from chickpeas! Sharon luckily won a contest on Instagram and Banza sent her an amazing package with their pasta. We got to try first hand how delicious this pasta is and boy were we excited! Us Sage and Celery gals have sensitive stomachs, so we tend to steer clear of gluten since it usually results in a big 'ol tummy ache and since Banza is made just from chickpeas it is naturally gluten free. Banza believes that chickpeas are a secret superfood - they're naturally gluten free, low on the glycemic index, and they use certified non-GMO chickpeas. To make it even better, it has a whopping 25 grams of protein and 13 grams of fiber per each 3.5 oz. serving! So don't fret about not having a source of meat in the recipe you will still get all the protein you need. With some food, when you get rid of all the unhealthy stuff you end up with a product that has a totally different taste and texture and barely resembles the original...not with Banza. The taste, texture, and experience of eating pasta is still there! And we promise we aren't getting paid to say any of this, it is just that good!

We highly suggest you ditch your regular pasta that is filled with empty carbs and try Banza that will actually do your body good!

Servings: 2-3

Ingredients:

6 Roma tomatoes, diced

1/2 large onion, diced

1 tsp. garlic, minced

3 T olive oil

2 cups broccoli florets

1 cup zucchini, sliced

1 green pepper, thinly sliced

salt and pepper to taste

1/2 - 1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes

2 T Nutritional yeast, plus more to sprinkle on top

8 ounces Banza linguin

Instructions:

1.) In a medium to large sauté pan, heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil and sauté onions, garlic, and diced tomatoes until the onions are translucent. Add salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper to taste.

2.) Add broccoli florets and place a lid on top of the pan to cook the broccoli, about 2-3 minutes. Remove the lid and add the remaining vegetables. Let them cook through stirring as needed. Add 2 tablespoons of nutritional yeast.

3.) While the veggies are cooking, now is a good time to start cooking the Banza pasta. Cook according to the instructions on the package and drain.

4.) Place pasta in a bowl or on a plate and top with the tomato sauce and sprinkle with additional nutritional yeast - and enjoy!

 

Anti-aging Smoothie Bowl with Pitaya and Collagen Peptides

Sharon Muse

Don't you just love when you find something that tastes so decadent but is actually good for you? That's how we feel about smoothie bowls. We know that you guys have seen these beautiful pink colored smoothie bowls all over your social media and you're not alone if you were wondering, "what in the world is that?!?". The vibrant pink color comes from Pitaya, otherwise known as Dragon Fruit. Dragon Fruit is a superfruit indigenous to Central and South America, but is now grown all over the world. Don't let that intimidate you because it is super accessible to us in small pouches that are perfect for smoothies and smoothie bowls and can be found in your local grocery store. 

So, this week we want to share the smoothie bowl we made with Pitaya and the ever popular collagen peptides protein powder. Pitaya has numerous health benefits including immune booster, digestive aid, diabetes prevention, and anti-aging!  It is rich in antioxidants, they contain vitamin C (equivalent to 10 percent of the daily value), polyunsaturated (good) fatty acids, and several B vitamins for carbohydrate metabolism, as well as carotene and protein. Due to the vitamin C content, pitaya is packed with antioxidants which do a great job of keeping the skin tight and firm, which can offer a youthful appearance...which brings us to collagen!

Collagen is a long chain amino acid and is the most abundant protein in our body. It is found in our muscles, bones, skin, tendons, hair and it's even found in our digestive system. It has been called the "glue" that holds our body together. But sadly collagen decreases with age starting even as early as our 20s and 30s, which is why it is so important to incorporate it into our daily diets. 

From more youthful looking skin to reducing inflammation and healing your gut, collagen is a true nutritional powerhouse. As we mentioned collagen is a long chain amino acid and is primarily composed of the amino acids glycine, proline, alanine and hydroxyproline. These particular amino acids are shown to reduce the signs of aging (so you can now throw the idea of botox out of the window!). Now, if you're a man chances are you probably could care less about what it does to the appearance of your skin, but the same amino acids, glycine and proline, help repair tissue, lessen inflammation, shortens recovery after exercise and helps with sports related injuries! If you haven't heard, our gut is considered our second brain since it can be directly relative to many health issues and how our body is currently acting. Knowing that you will want to make sure that your gut is performing optimally. Collagen soothes and heals the digestive tract and helps repair the mucous lining, which can help repair leaky gut syndrome. It also helps break down the protein and fat from foods, making them easier for the body to digest. 

If you ask us, those are some pretty good reasons to, not only, add collagen to your diet, but to also try this recipe! But we won't shame you for wanting to give it a try simply due to the beautiful, vibrant pink color. Have fun with the toppings and add your favorite granola and fruits! And as always, don't forget to snap a picture for Instagram (and tag us) to show off your creation to all of your friends.

Ingredients:

1/4 cup Vanilla Almond Milk

2 packet of frozen Pitya (dragon fruit) puree

1/2 cup frozen fruit - we used a mixture of strawberries, bananas, and mangos

2 scoops collagen peptides, we used Vital Proteins

Toppings: (optional) granola, chia seeds, star fruit or anything that sounds good to you

Instructions:

1.) Starting with the almond milk, place all the ingredients in a blender and blend on high. Pour into a bowl and sprinkle toppings on or not and enjoy!

 

A Quick and Easy Salad Inspired by Samantha's Honeymoon

Sharon Muse

So, I know at first glance you're probably wondering what is so special about this salad and you're not alone! While I was honeymooning in Italy and France I had some of the best food of my life and more importantly, some of the best cheese of my life! Now, I usually don't have cheese, or dairy for that matter, in my normal day-to-day diet but you know what they say..." when in Rome do as Romans do". I took full advantage of that saying and indulged quite a bit and it was so worth it! After many nights of eating delicious gelato, I was craving a salad other than the classic Caesar and Caprese salad, I was looking for something fresh and light. Surprisingly the hotel I was staying in had a salad with arugula, sundried tomatoes, walnuts, pecorino cheese, smoked salmon, and quinoa. Yes, they had QUINOA! I was so excited to see quinoa on a menu after not having or seeing it for over a week, I ordered the salad even though I wasn't crazy about the rest of the ingredients. To me, the ingredients didn't make much sense and I was skeptical how they would taste together. Let me tell you...it ended up being one of my favorite meals of my two-week honeymoon!

After ordering it for the second and last time just before we departed the hotel for the next stop on our honeymoon I was so sad I didn't discover it earlier in the trip. I dreamt about this salad until we returned to the States and I knew I had to recreate this salad and share it with everyone I know. The best thing about this salad is that it is EXTREMELY easy to make, I'm talking like five minutes if you keep cooked quinoa in your refrigerator like we do. The combination of the ingredients are purely delectable and even somewhat addicting. 

The pecorino cheese we used is very similar to parmesan, in that it has a salty and sharp flavor. It's made from 100% sheep's milk, so when shopping for it make sure you get the real stuff. This cheese with the walnuts and sun-dried tomatoes is the combination that made me fall in love with this salad. I also loved that I was giving my body the nutrients it needed and missed so dearly with the quinoa and arugula.

As we all know, quinoa is loaded with nutrients. It is a complete protein, containing all nine essential amino acids. It has two times the fiber of most grains and is rich in Magnesium, Riboflavin and the antioxidant Manganese. Arugula also carries its weight in being a nutritious leafy green.  By consuming 2 cups of arugula it will provide 20 percent of vitamin A and over 50 percent of vitamin K needs for the day. It also contains a good amount of vitamin C, folate, and calcium.

This salad will not disappoint! Packed with protein, it is the perfect lunch or dinner for the days you need something quick and easy. And if you're not a fan of smoked salmon, that's okay (Sharon totally gets it)! She thinks it goes great with a piece of grilled chicken. 

Servings: 1

Ingredients:

2 cups Arugula

1/2 cup cooked Quinoa

4-6 halves Sundried Tomatoes, sliced

1/8 cup chopped Walnuts

1/8 cup Pecorino Romano cheese

Dressing:

1 T Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 - 2 T Balsamic Vinegar

Instructions:

1.) In a bowl, toss together arugula and quinoa add sundried tomatoes, and walnuts.

2.) Drizzle olive oil and vinegar and sprinkle cheese on top. ENJOY!

Quinoa Buddha Bowl

Sharon Muse

Buddha Bowls are all the rage these days and with good reason, who doesn't love everything in one dish. The base of our bowl is quinoa. If you have been with us a while, you know we love our superfoods and quinoa is definitely at the top of our list for superfoods. We love it not only for the taste but for the array of health benefits.

Quinoa dates back thousands of years ago when the Incas realized that this seed was fit for human consumption. They started eating to increase the stamina of their warriors and it can do the same for us! Quinoa is considered a complete protein, meaning it has all nine essential amino. acids. It is also rich in Magnesium, Manganese, Riboflavin, Lysine, Iron and contains almost twice a much fiber as most grains. Have we convinced you yet that you need quinoa in your life? 

Now that we have the base of our bowl covered, let's move on to toppings. This is where you can get a creative as you want. Choose whatever vegetables you like most or branch out and try a few new ones. We kept this Buddha Bowl vegetarian but there is nothing keeping you from adding some grilled shrimp or chicken on it. Make it your own! 

Serves 3-4 bowls

Ingredients:

3 cups cooked quinoa (we cook ours in either vegetable broth or chicken broth for added flavor)

Vegetable to roast:

Fresh broccoli, cut into florets

Asparagus, cut into bite sized pieces

Zucchini, sliced

Sweet potato, peeled and cut into bite-sized pieces

Toppings:

Fresh spinach

Avocado

Can of garbanzo beans, drained (save the liquid and use it in place of eggs when baking, take a look at our Double Chocolate Chip Vegan Gluten-Free Recipe as an example)

Dressing:

Creamy Balsamic Vinaigrette

Instructions:

1.) Preheat oven to 425°. 

2.) Place your vegetables to roast in a medium size bowl and toss with olive oil and salt and pepper. Now is a great time to add any type of spices that you like. We like spice, so we added ground Chipotle Chili Pepper to the sweet potatoes and salt and pepper to the rest of the veggies. Once your veggies are tossed with the olive oil and spices, place on a sheet pan covered with parchment paper and roast for 15 -20 minutes. Tossing halfway to ensure even cooking. The sweet potatoes may need longer depending on how large your pieces are.

3.) Place 3/4 - 1 cup of quinoa in the bottom of a bowl. Top in with roasted veggies and remaining toppings. Drizzle the dressing over top and enjoy!