Tag Archives: Vegan

Economical Copycat Veggie Wrap

vegan veggie wrap sundried tomato aioli

So folks, it’s official. After over a month of slowly moving items from point Veggie to point Beast, I now am living in a new neighborhood with a new roommate. I can’t complain about the company, but the location is taking some getting used to. It’s not that I dislike my new neighborhood. It’s just too…tempting.

For instance, I have not one, but TWO malls within walking distance. It seems that every corner holds an enticing boutique, and of course a Target sits just a hop, skip, and a jump away. Then there are the restaurants. Oh me, oh my, the restaurants.

This one particular restaurant haunts me. It creeps up on me when I’m hungry, reminding me that an awesome wrap is just a short walk away. A delicious wrap that’s full of veggies, brown rice, and a tangy vegan sun-dried tomato aioli that I could drink with a straw (gross…too far?). In short, it’s amazing. Amazing, expensive, and available for takeout. It’s a triple threat.

In an attempt to sidestep the multi-week veggie wrap purchases that would inevitably ensue, I decided to try my hand at wrap construction. With all the temptations surrounding me, I figured my bank account would thank me for trying to cure my wrap cravings at home.

My bank account may need to have a talk with me about the clothes cravings, and the nearby cures, but that’s an issue for another day.
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Energy Boosting Sesame Orzo

miso sesame broccoli rabe orzo

I kind of failed at food last week. I took a “cooking vacation,” if you will. I went out to eat, grabbed takeout, or made avocado sandwiches literally every night. With everything going on this summer, I just hit a wall where I felt overwhelmed and like I had no time. When this happens, it’s not only fast meals that I crave, but carbs. I just want all the carbs.

When I finally found myself with some time on Sunday, I decided I better step foot in the kitchen and see if I could get back in the groove and make something substantial. While I had no intention of ending my carb bender, I thought adding greens and protein to the mix might be helpful for my dwindling energy level.

Enter beluga lentils. A teeny tiny protein powerhouse that pairs well with just about anything. I figured lentils, broccoli rabe, and a miso-sesame sauce juuuust might bring my energy back up and get my cooking shoes back on.

To be clear, I would be piling all these ingredients on top of pasta, of course…we’re taking baby steps here, people.
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[Nearly] Vegan Weekend, Continued: Nutty Veggie Burgers

vegan veggie burger no top

Earlier this week I wrote about dipping my toes into vegan baking for a cabin trip last weekend. I’m strictly a lacto-ovo veg, and have been since I was but a wee 3-year-old, but I wanted to make a couple of things to share with our vegan friends: a sweet treat and a substantial meal. Since this weekend was all about convenience, and grabbing food that would get us back to the lake faster, I decided to whip up some veggie burgers. Well, it was mostly this convenience factor that made up my mind, but I’m also kind of obsessed with veggie burgers. It’s true. Weird, but true.

I’m also kind of obsessed with learning about how vegan food works. The science befuddles me (MOST science befuddles me, but that’s a different topic), but I love how creative vegans need to be with their food. I’ve always thought that I’m just on the cusp of being a vegan. Sometimes I think I could do it. Sometimes I think I might even LOVE it.

However, every time I consider veganism, even if only for a moment, there’s this little voice inside of me that screams, “CHEESE! Grab the cheese and run!”

…but we’ll get to that later. First, the veggie burger.

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Vegan Weekend: Peanut Butter Banana Muffins

Peanut butter banana muffins whole wheat vegan

This weekend was one of those summer weekends. The kind where you do nothing all day but are tired because of it. The kind where you get sleepy eyes from too much sun, and need an afternoon nap after a midday happy hour. I like those kind of weekends.

This weekend was also an experiment in vegan-ism…or at least sort of. We went to a friend’s cabin with a 50% vegan-friend population, so I wanted to make some things that would be enjoyed by all, including the little 1.5-year-old who entertained us the whole time. My first order of business was to get my sweets covered…I decided to fashion some kind of muffin that was healthy enough to be breakfast, but yummy enough that the non-vegans would also partake.

I figured we needed to come in with a plan for food. Partially because of the group’s varying food preferences, but mostly because I didn’t want anything silly like cooking to interfere with our days of doing nothing. This girl’s got priorities.
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Drama-Free Rice and Beans

Rice and bean mexican salad gluten free vegan

For the most part, I’m a pretty drama-free girl. From day one, my mom says that I “came out mellow,” and that’s pretty much been my way of being in the years since, with the exception of a few adolescent outbursts. However, there are a few things I’m a bit of a drama queen about.

Like when I open my car door to get out and it’s juuuust not open wide enough, so it comes swinging back and hits me in the leg. I think I’ve scared my neighbors with my expletives a few times.

Or when I carry my groceries up my three flights of stairs, huffing and puffing, sweating, needing to pee in a big way, then go to find the right key to open my door in the sea of keys I carry everywhere, and drop the entire thing just as I get it up to the key hole. I will cry.

Or when I get all fancy in my Sunday cooking, just trying to make my lunches for the week, trying to live a responsible, well-planned adult life, and I end up with 5-days-worth of nearly inedible food. To make matters worse, I usually end up eating the failure food anyway because I also hate wasting things. This experience will ruin my day, and usually the only thing that will make it better is an oven-fresh chocolate chip cookie and trash TV (and I mean really the. only. thing). Again, drama queen.

My mom knows all-too-well that my lunches are very important to me. She’s experienced first hand when I’ve spent $30 on ingredients and literally could not force down the result. So, when her coworker recommended a very simple and quick bean salad, she thought of me and my lunch adventures.

The recipe intrigued me, but it was SO straightforward…so simple…so unlike me and my Sunday experimentation. It may not get me into my Sunday cooking trance, but it would supply me with food for a full week with very little effort. I decided it was worth a try. This dish comes together in literally 20 minutes, and will feed you for DAYS. Now that’ll just make a girl smile.

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