Hello lovelies! It’s been awhile. I’ve been trying to figure out how to juggle my life as a special education preschool teacher with my powerlifting life and my blogging life. It’s been a little rough and sadly my blogging has fell to the side. I’m also trying to go back to college soon but I will figure it out! I’ve been up to a lot actually….teaching, cooking, eating, and I had another powerlifting meet in January.
I had an awesome couple of snow days this past week and decided to whip this up for my lunch. This is my usual tofu scramble recipe but sometimes I love to put it into a burrito shell. Burritos make life better, right? I mean, LOOK at this beauty! This is my basic tofu scramble with about 1/4c of Daiya cheddar cheese thrown in, topped with Follow Your Heart Sour Cream and scallions in a tortilla shell (gluten free for me because gluten hates me).
This is an easy recipe for a bulk seasoning for tofu scramble. It’s also one of my favorite cooking hacks….bulk seasoning so I only have to add one thing while cooking. Mix this all together and store to use for when you make tofu scramble. I usually just sprinkle it on top so I don’t have an exact measurement….my guess is use about 1/8-1/4c of this powder per block of tofu and adjust salt and pepper by taste preference. Procedural wise for cooking, follow the basic concept of my herb tofu scramble here. BUT be sure to leave out all of the seasonings, basil, and nutritional yeast from that recipe above if you’re using this basic powder recipe below.
- 1 cup nutritional yeast
- 2 Tbsp turmeric
- 1/4c EACH-chili powder, cumin, and oregano
- 2 Tbsp black pepper
- 2 Tbsp black salt (it's got a lil sulfur taste and is awesome in scramble, you can get it at a decent health food store or co-op)
- possibly additional sea salt if you like
- Put all in tupperware or a large mason jar. Close up tight and shake, shake, shake. Use about 1/8-1/4c of this mix when you make tofu scramble. Easy and yummy!
- Definitely splurge on the black salt.
- Definitely buy really good nutritional yeast like the Red Star brand.
- Make sure you store it in a tight container, especially when you shake it!
It always takes me a few weeks to fully embrace the fact that it’s fall and I *should* do fall things or cook fall things. These waffles were my jump into fall. I LOVE waffles and pumpkin so these are a total win, plus they’re gluten free and full of different grains. SO gather your favorite waffle toppings and get ready. Save the REAL maple syrup for me please (I’m a total syrup snob!).
- 1/4c brown rice flour
- 3/4c white rice flour
- 1/4c chickpea flour
- 1/8c PLUS 2 tbsp sorghum flour
- 1/4c tapioca starch
- 2 tbsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 1/4c almond milk (or other plant based milk)
- 1/2 c pureed pumpkin
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/4c plus 6 tsp water
- 2 tbsp canola oil
- 1/8c maple syrup
- Turn on belgian waffle maker to medium-high, let heat up for a few minutes. Heat oven to 200 degrees and put a baking sheet in it to keep waffles warm. Whisk wet ingredients in a bowl. Mix dry ingredients in another bowl and add to wet ingredients. Mix well. When waffle maker is hot, spray it with baking spray and put about 1/4c plus 1/8c (or less depending on the size of your waffle maker) and close. Let cook for 4-5 minutes then check. Slowly try to open it, if it opens easily it should be done....if it can't open, let it cook for a few more minutes. Once done, put waffle in oven to keep warm. Repeat. These can be frozen for a few weeks too!
Happy Labor Day Weekend friends! Nothing screams Labor Day weekend like hanging out with your BBQ and these cupcakes OR relaxing while treating yourself with these cupcakes.
I really like chocolate. I also really like chocolate and peanut butter together. There’s no better combo in my mind than the pure decadence of chocolate and peanut butter in sweet dessert heaven. Yeah. If you don’t like peanut butter, feel free to use another type of nut butter…almond makes for a very decadent frosting. If you’re allergic to peanuts and tree nuts, feel free to use Sunbutter (which weirdly I LOVE more than peanut butter and have stocked in my house).
Here’s the process in photos. I sadly got carried away and missed a few photos. Don’t hate me!
For the cupcakes:
Mix all the wet ingredients in a stand mixer or with a hand mixer. Mix all of the dry ingredients in a separate bowl and toss into the wet mixture. Mix it until there are no lumps.
I like to use a 1/4 cup sized cookie scoop to scoop out the batter and put it into the cupcake papers. I use a cupcake pan lined with cupcake papers.
For the frosting:
Whip just the fats in a stand mixer or in a bowl with a hand mixer. I like to whip them until they are one uniform off white color. Then add the vanilla and whip until incorporated.
Next, add the peanut butter and whip until incorporated.
Then you should add one cup of powdered sugar at a time with a teaspoon or so of the soy milk (basically break up the 2 tbsp of milk for three rounds of sugar). So add one cup of sugar, a little milk and whip until mixed. Then so on.
Then you have frosting! You want it to be smooth and spreadable or be able to come out of a frosting bag but still hold it’s shape. If it feels a little stiff add a little more milk until you reach the desired texture.
Now decorate your cupcakes! I like to mix a tiny bit of canola oil with some peanut butter to get it the consistency for a nice drizzle for over the cupcake. You can melt chocolate and pour over or drizzle ganache, or just top it with some chocolate chips.
- 1 ½ cup flour
- ½ cup + 1/8 c cocoa powder
- 2 tsp baking powder
- ¾ tsp baking soda
- pinch sea salt (about 1/4 tsp)
- 1 ¾ soy milk
- 1 tbsp vinegar
- 1 ½ c sugar
- 1/3 c canola oil
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 cup organic shortening
- 1/2 cup earth balance or other vegan butter
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 3 cups organic powdered sugar
- 1/8-1/4 cup natural peanut butter
- GF cake: use 1 1/4c +1/8c white rice flour, 1/8 c tapioca starch, 1/2 tsp xanthan gum, and about 2 cups of milk to sub for flours and milk amounts.
- For the cupcakes: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Mix the wet ingredients in a stand mixer. Combine the dry ingredients in a separate bowl then add to the wet ingredients and mix until smooth. Take a standard 12 cupcake tin and line with cupcake papers. Use a 1/4 cup cookie scoop (fill it scant, so not quite full) to scoop out the batter and fill each cupcake paper. You should get about 16 cupcakes. Bake for 15 minutes, then turn (bring the back to the front of the oven) and bake for 15 minutes or until a knife test comes out clean.
- For the frosting: whip just the two fats until they are a uniform white color and very fluffy (takes about a minute). Then add the vanilla and whip until incorporated. Next, add the peanut butter and again, whip until incorporated. Then, add one cup of powdered sugar at a time with enough soy milk to get it moving. Whip until sugar is incorporated, repeat for the remaining two cups of sugar. You may need to add a little more milk at the end to reach your desired texture/softness. You want it to be soft enough to spread but still thick enough to hold shape.
- Once the cupcakes are cool, frost away!
- See the gf flour/milk ratios above at the bottom of the ingredients.
- Add the milk slowly into the frosting at the end so it doesn't become too thin. If this happens, add a little more powdered sugar.
What is meal prepping? Meal prepping is when you take a day, night, or a couple of hours to make your food for the week. Some people prep a meal, several meals, or all of their meals and snacks for the entire week. I find that it’s very helpful to prep your meals in advance.
Meal prepping helps you make more nutritional food choices and is very helpful if you have a hectic schedule. Think about it! When you’re super busy you don’t really have a lot of time to cook food. So what do you do? Typically, most people would opt for eating out, some kind of fast food, or a processed food that is quick to grab and eat. Meal prepping helps you avoid doing that and gives you better fuel for your hectic schedule. Food is fuel and sometimes what you eat or drink can bog you down at some point. And if you’re a busy person, you don’t have time for low energy.
I also love the idea of meal prepping as an athlete. It helps me know ahead of time what I’m eating and I know that I’m going to reach all of my macronutrient (carbs, fat, protein) goals for the day/week. It gives me the fuel I need to be a better athlete while still eating the foods I love.
So what do you do? Some people might just make up several different components of their meals and measure them out later, while some people pre-measure all meals out and package them in containers.
Here’s a rad video from Cheap Lazy Vegan about Meal Prepping. Check out her Youtube channel, it’s pretty awesome.
It depends on your goals and your time, both for cooking and for eating. I have a fair amount of time during the week so I usually prep on Sundays and either Wednesday or Thursday. I also only need to prep my lunches for work because I eat breakfast and dinner at home, with plenty of time to cook them. I also just bulk pack mine and measure it out real quick in the morning. I don’t have a lot of containers and have a little time in the mornings so I can do that.
What do you include? I usually have either a marinated (with a little oil for fat) baked tofu or tempeh, roasted sweet potatoes/gold potatoes/or quinoa, and some kind of steamed/no oil roasted veggies…broccoli rabe, kale, carrots, green beans, brussel sprouts, corn, squash, etc. I always try to do a veggie mix with at least one kind of leafy green veggie. Most of the time my meals have some kind of theme to keep me from getting bored. I mix the flavors up every week. Sometimes I throw hemp seeds or nuts on top for my fat. Sometimes I make nutritional yeast sauce or a cashew sauce for the top.
Here’s my very basic guideline for a tofu or tempeh marinade. Use whatever seasonings you want in it to switch it up. Some ideas:
Smoky: Add 1 tsp smoked paprika and a pinch of oregano
Italian Herb: Add ½ tsp each of oregano, basil, thyme, and rosemary
Asian: Add 1 tsp of chopped garlic and ginger with some sesame seeds, or maybe a little orange rind
Mexican: Add ½ tsp cumin and chili powder
Also feel free to experiment with the flavors!
- block of tofu or tempeh, cut into squares or strips
- 1/4 cup tamari or soy sauce
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
- 1/8 c water
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Whisk all ingredients with whatever spices/seasonings you want, except protein, in a bowl. Add chopped protein and toss to cover.
- Spray a baking sheet with oil spray and pour contents onto it. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until cooked to desired color.
This brownie is probably my favorite dessert. It took about 13 different recipe formulations to get the one that was fudgy enough to meet my deep brownie desires. I really like fudgy brownies and I do not think a cakey brownie is a brownie at all. There, I said it. I came out as a brownie snob. It’s the only kind of snob to be honestly. I like what I like, what can I say?
Back to the brownie…..it’s fudgy and sweet but not teeth shattering. It tastes amazing warmed up with some coconut ice cream on top, it’s yummy chopped up on top of banana ice cream (see my recipe here), and it’s just great to eat by itself.
A couple of notes…this recipe is a fickle beast sometimes. The chocolate MUST be melted just enough to make the batter just so, if it’s not melted enough the batter is super thick and may bake out fine BUT if the chocolate is starting to clump up and is becoming overmelted, you might have a problem. Also, make sure the yogurt is watered down a little bit to get the right consistency for the batter. And the most important note…make sure you use an actual liquid measuring cup for the oil. Trust me it’s a little different. I’ve had to teach several people over the years at the bakery this recipe and I had someone whose brownies just weren’t coming out the same. Finally after watching them do it a couple of times, I realized they were using a little dry measuring cup to measure out the oil. I had them use the liquid one afterwards and the brownies came out perfectly. It really matters!
Here’s the procedure with pictures!
Mix the wet ingredients in a stand mixer or with a hand mixer.
Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl and stir to mix well.
Melt the chocolate in a stainless steel pot over low heat. Stir with a heat resistant spatula. It should feel like stirring soft pudding when it is melted enough. *Be sure that everything is dry because one little speck of water will make the chocolate seize up and you won’t be able to melt it.
Add the melted chocolate to the wet ingredients immediately. Do not pass go, do not collect $200, do not dance, do it fast! As soon as it starts cooling, it will thicken. This is the touchy stage!
Then add the dry to the wet ingredients immediately and mix very well. Scoop it out with a rubberish spatula. Sometimes there might be more liquid at the bottom of the bowl so just spread that out evenly with the batter. Swoosh the top of the batter in the pan like you’re a fairy granting a wish, back and forth across until it’s an even height.
Bake them, let them cool, and enjoy.
The recipe is below. Make these and be excited about chocolate fudgy heaven.
Be excellent to each other and to yourself. XOXO
- 2 cups or organic sugar (evaporated cane juice)
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2/3 cup canola oil
- 6 tbsp organic applesauce
- 1/2 cup plain coconut yogurt, make sure to add a little bit of water to make it so it runs off the spoon easily (use a dry 1/2c and fill it a little over 3/4 of the way and thin it out with water to fill)
- 1 1/2 cups flour (GF version: 1 1/4 c white rice flour, 1/4 c tapioca starch, 1/2 tsp xanthan gum)
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 c dutch processed cocoa powder
- 2 pinches of sea salt (about 1/2 tsp)
- 1 3/4 cups chocolate chips (wait to do this until the wet is together and the dry is mixed in its bowl so you watch it)
- Mix wet ingredients (minus the melted chocolate) in a stand mixer or in a bowl with a hand mixer. Next, combine the dry ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Melt the chocolate on low in a small stainless steel pot, stirring with a rubber spatula. Once the chocolate is the texture of really soft pudding, all uniform in texture and very easy to stir, IMMEDIATELY add it to the wet ingredients and mix well but quickly. Then add the dry ingredients and mix well but quickly. Next use the rubber spatula to push the batter into a greased 9 x 13 inch rectangular pan. If there is some extra wet batter towards the bottom of the bowl just be sure to spread it around well with the thick batter to avoid weird baked spots. Spread the batter out by moving from left to right in a fun swoosh motion. Bake at 350 degrees for 34 minutes. Let cool in fridge thoroughly before cutting. EAT!
- *be sure to use a liquid measuring cup for the oil!
Have I mentioned how much I love breakfast food?
I LOVE it. I think I might have already said this, but I can say it again. I love making a huge brunch on Sundays. It’s really fun once in awhile to create a big and amazing brunch with a main dish, side dishes, and sometimes dessert. I really go all out. This recipe is one of those special ones. It’s pretty time consuming because it takes awhile to cook, but I promise it’s really worth the effort. It also requires a lot of patience waiting for the omelette to cook before you close it. But patience my young Padawan, all will be revealed at the end. (If you don’t get this please watch Star Wars)
A couple of notes: let the pan heat up for about 5 minutes before cooking the first omelette; the first omelette is always ugly; wear some protective clothing because the pan gets incredibly hot and by the 3rd one the oil splatters; this takes a lot of oil to avoid sticking so there’s a good amount of fat. This pairs really well with something easy like roasted potatoes or toast.
Here’s the lowdown and basic procedure kids (scroll down to the recipe for more precise instructions):
Put everything into the food processor, except the oil, like this…
It should look like this all processed with no chunks.
I use a normal sized ice cream scoop (about 1/4c size) to put the batter into the hot, oiled pan. Use two scoops or 1/2c of batter, but keep in mind you should get 4 servings out of this recipe. Spread the batter out slowly into a circle like this.
Let it cook for awhile. It’s very similar to cooking a pancake…when the top looks a bit cooked/dry add the cheese and fillings to one side and cover to melt the cheese. Once it starts looking more brown on the edges, take a spatula and scrape underneath it slowly to loosen it from the pan, then flip the one side over to close. Cover again and cook until done.
Once it’s done, it should slide out of the pan. Keep warm in the oven on a cookie sheet. Then eat!
- 1 container (15 oz) extra firm tofu, cut or torn into large chunks
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 3/4 almond milk or milk of choice
- 4 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1 tsp tahini
- 2 tbsp flour-wheat or chickpea
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 tsp black salt
- Daiya vegan cheese
- veggies of choice, chopped and precooked or raw
- olive oil for cooking
- Put 1 tbsp of oil into frying pan and start heating over medium high heat.
- Pre-heat the oven to 250 degrees and put a cooking sheet inside for the omelettes to come.
- Combine all ingredients, except oil, into food processor and process until smooth.
- Scoop about 1/2c of batter into hot frying pan and spread out into a circle, about 6-7 inches wide but not too thin. You want it to be hearty so it will cook well and be able to fold, so about pancake thickness here.
- Let it cook for about 8 minutes or until the outside starts browning and the top starts drying out.
- Add the cheese and fillings to one side of the omelette and cover. Cook for about 4 more minutes. Take a spatula and slowly/softly scrape underneath the omelette to make sure it isn't sticking. If it starts breaking a little, it needs to cook for a bit more before you scrape it. Once you can scrape it easily, flip the top part over the toppings to close. Cover and cook for another 3 minutes to melt the cheese. Slide it out of pan and onto the cookie sheet in the oven. DON'T forget to use an oven mitt!
- Repeat process until all batter is gone. Be sure to use olive oil before every single omelette to prevent sticking.
- You should turn the heat down to medium after the 2nd omelette and you may need to use a pot cover as a shield from the splattering oil. Trust me, it hurts.
- Remember the first one is always weird looking so don't be discouraged.
- Sometimes it takes a few times to get it right.
- Sriracha and hot sauce are your friends.
- Each omelette may take a little less time to cook as the pan heats up.
- Protect yourself from the hot oil! You may need to slide the pan off the hot burner to put more batter in and then put it back on the heat after you spread it out. XOXO
I used to hate bananas. Seriously, I was one of the pickiest eaters alive. When I was little, my parents tried to get me to eat so many things and I only wanted to eat hot dogs (hey, I haven’t always been vegan sadly), box macaroni and cheese, and peas. After I became vegan I started broadening my food horizons. I still don’t like to just eat a banana by itself BUT I love banana whip (aka nice cream) and sliced bananas on toast or a rice cake with some nut butter. I really love this chocolate banana whip though. It’s a perfect snack, especially before a workout, because it’s a fair amount of carbs and fat with a little protein. This is also super duper easy to make. You just have to plan ahead the day before and cut up the bananas to throw in the freezer. I will buy a bunch of 6 or 8 large bananas so I can prep 4 containers at a time. Then I just pull one out and whip it up right before the gym. Easy breezy vegan ice creamy.
Basically just throw the bananas into the food processor with the almond milk, cocoa or cacao powder, and small amount of protein.
Then slowly add a little more milk until it starts moving, but not too much because you don’t want it liquidy. You just want it to be able to start processing.
It should look similar to this when done. Sometimes you need to use a spatula to scrape the sides of the bowl or a knife to break up large banana chunks and reprocess.
Dress it up with your favorite toppings. I like to top it with 1 tbsp of Sunbutter or PB and some chocolate chips.
- 2 large bananas, sliced and pre-frozen
- 1/8 cup cocoa or cacao powder
- 2 tbsp almond milk (any plant milk works), may need a little more to process
- 1/2 tbsp-1 tbsp protein powder
- Throw frozen, sliced bananas into food processor.
- Add protein powder, cocoa powder, and almond milk.
- Process until smooth. You may need to add some more milk through the feed tube while processing to get it moving. You also may need to scrape the sides of the bowl with a spatula or use a knife to break up large chunks. Add just enough milk (in a really slow stream) until it is moving well enough to process. You want it to be the texture of soft serve ice cream. Process for about 1 minute until smooth and fluffy.
- Great toppings include: 1 tbsp of nut or seed butter, chocolate chips, crushed cookies or cereal pieces, chopped brownie or cake, sprinkles.
- Adding a cookie, brownie, or cake will up the carb count if you want it to.
I love breakfast or brunch…honestly I just love breakfast foods. I could eat them any time of the day. One of my absolute favorites, which is also one of the easiest, is tofu scramble. There’s just something about sizzling hot tofu with veggies and seasonings paired with buttery toast or roasted potatoes that makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. It’s the perfect weekend brunch and goes well with a movie or netflix. Make it for yourself, or your family, or that hot brunch date you’ve been wanting to have.
This is no plain jane tofu scramble, which sometimes really hit the spot. This one is full of herbs like oregano and fresh basil. It’s a nice twist on a classic. Sometimes we all need a twist. XOXO
- 1 block extra firm tofu, pressed and crumbled
- 1/2c red onion, diced
- 1/2c button or portobello mushrooms, diced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 1/4-1/2 tsp black salt
- 1tbsp ground oregano
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1 c fresh basil, chopped
- 1/2 c cherry tomatoes, chopped
- 1 c kale, chopped
- 1/4 c nutritional yeast
- 1/4-1/2 c water
- 1 tbsp olive oil (or less)
- Heat oil in pan on medium to high heat. Add onions and mushrooms, cook until onions are translucent. Add garlic and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add crumbled tofu to pan and stir well. Next, add all spices/herbs (including fresh basil, but excluding the yeast) and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently or until tofu is starting to brown. Add the chopped tomatoes and kale, stir very well. Then add the nutritional yeast and enough water to almost cover the scramble. Stir it very well and turn the heat down to medium to let it simmer. You want to just cook off the liquid so stir it once in awhile until the liquid is gone but the scramble is still slightly moist. This prevents it drying out and makes it slightly saucy. Once the liquid is gone it is done! Enjoy!
- You can use a tofu press to get the liquid out of the tofu or just hold the cake in your hands and press without squishing it. It's not a big deal if it still has some moisture.
These are probably my second favorite baked good. My first favorite are brownies. Now I know what you’re thinking….”your first recipe isn’t your favorite?”. Yes, but these are really freakin delicious so just go with me. They are gooey, caramel-ish and chewy bars flecked with chocolate. Eat them still warm or warm them up and top em off with some coconut cookie dough ice cream for a real decadent as fuck treat. Bring these to a BBQ to impress your friends and feel like a total bomb ass vegan. Now go make them and remember….be excellent to each other and to yourself. XOXO
- 10 Tbsp vegan margarine ( I use Earth Balance), melted
- 6 Tbsp plain yogurt ( I use So Delicious coconut) add a small amount of water to thin it out, must be slightly runny
- 1 cup organic sucanat
- 2/3 c organic evaporated cane juice (sugar)
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 2 flax eggs (2 tsp seeds ground with 6 Tbsp water)
- 4 Tbsp extra water
- 2 cups flour
- 2 pinches sea salt (about 1/4-1/2 tsp)
- 2 cups vegan chocolate chips
- ***for GLUTEN FREE blondies use 1 3/4c white rice flour, 1/4c tapioca starch, 1/2tsp xanthan gum for the dry mix and add 3-4 more Tbsp water to the wet. You want the batter to be a little runnier than the wheaty version.
- Cream the wet ingredients( sugars, melted margarine, yogurt, vanilla and flax eggs) in a standing mixer, or use a hand mixer and large mixing bowl, until it just barely looks dark like caramel.
- Combine all the dry ingredients (flours, chocolate chips, salt) in a large mixing bowl. (GF dry mix would be rice flour, tapioca starch, xanthan gum, salt, and chocolate chips)
- Add the dry mixture to the wet one and mix until well combined.
- Oil a 9X13 inch baking pan with baking spray or coconut oil (whatever oil you desire) and pour batter into pan.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 26-30 minutes. Test with a fork or knife, if caramel batter comes out and it still seems goopy, bake for 5 more minutes.
- Let cool for 15-30 minutes before cutting.