Category Archives: Casseroles

Healthy Vegan Jjajangmyun

Oh baby. Anyone else get hooked on this stuff thanks to Korean Drama? Oh ok, that was just me and my friends in SF you say? Noted.  I love me some Chinese/Korean hybrid food, like seriously.  But gotta make my own healthy/vegan version, challenge accepted!  Without using pre-made black bean sauce, I must say this lacks the concentrated blackness and intense flavor, but I also know that it lacks much of the oil, animal fat,  and sodium in the original as well!  Whether or not it tastes enough like it to be under this name, hard to say. But it was inspired by Jjanjangmyun and it still tastes delicious! So, you decide 🙂  P.S., this tastes even spicier and richer the next day, so do not fear leftovers 😀

You need a bunch of veggies, a can of black beans, and a box of soba or other gluten free noodles (or any kind of your choice)!  See instructions below for all the veggies required….


1 can black beans

1 tomato 

Raw ginger, pinch, minced

1/4 tsp miso

Pinch orge rind

Liquid aminos 1tbs

Tsp crushed red pepper

1 small clove garlic

3/4  cup water 

Sautéed: 1/2 onion, 3cloves garlic, 1/4 jalapeño, handful kale

Place sauce into saucepan and begin simmering.

Meanwhile, sauté in sesame oil:

Cabbage, about 1/3 large head, cut into strips

1/2 parsnip chopped

Red onion, 1 sliced

2 zucchinis, chopped

1tbs crushed red pepper

carrot 1 large, peeled and chopped

Mushrooms, about 2 cups chopped

Saute veggies then add to sauce and keep simmering for about 20-30min. I like the richness of flavor when cooked longer.

Then cook your noodles (I recommend soba for gluten free) and serve sauce replete with veggies over noodles!

Garnish with sliced cucumber and cilantro.

Serve with korean hot sauce paste (garlic chili) to taste (i didn’t have any so i used sriracha– not the same, but gives the heat!)

Enjoy with a side of Korean Drama 😉



Savory Roasted Red Beets

Ah, I spent last weekend in Vegas eating lavish buffets and oversized oily feasts, so I must say I was delighted to get back to my healthy kitchen. Fortunately my guy values health as much as I do and did some grocery shopping while I was away, yielding some fresh organic beets! Time to roast em!

You need:

3-4 beets, chopped into 1/2in x2 in slices

1 large clove garlic, minced

1/2 yellow onion, chopped

coconut spray

2-3 tbs fresh parsley, chopped

Preheat oven to 350F, and spray glass/ceramic dish with coconut oil

Toss all veggies and parsley in dish, adding another spray if necessary to lightly coat.

Bake for 20minutes, stir. Resume for another 20minutes and serve with whatever you like!! I steamed some potatoes, cabbage, and acorn squash to go with mine, but I could see serving them on rice, or a bed of spinach too!  Naturally for meat/fish eaters it makes a great side, but is a most delicious meal for plant munchers 🙂  Enjoy! These were SO flavorful, and were even tastier as leftovers. Yeah, baby!!

Savory Buckwheat Porridge! (vegan, gf)

I looooove savory porridge, but only see it in Asian cuisine, and man is it good! Why do Americans like their warm porridge so sweet? Bleh! Why not turn it into a savory dinner or warm comforting lunch? This could not be more easy! Throw all Ingredients into you pot or rice cooker and simmer/cook according to grain-of-choice’s cooking instructions! I used a blend of steel cut oats and buckwheat groats in a rice cooker, easy peasy! Yummy in my tummy! I love the kick the jalapeños give it and the textues or the corn and green onion toppers were perfect. But really there are endless options for this concept, share with me what you come up with! Any veggie would be awesome!

You need:

1/3 cup each steel cut oats and raw buckwheat groats 

3 cu water

1/2 red bell pepper, chopped

1/4 jalapeño, minced  

3/4 cup Dino kale, chopped

5 mushrooms, sliced

1 small clove garlic minced

1 chopped sweet potato, peeled

1 cup almond milk

Throw all ingredients in your rice cooker or pot, simmering for about 40minutes or per rice cooker brown rice setting.  That is all, thank you, very much.  See recommended garnishes below 🙂 🙂 🙂  Be warmed from within!

To Garnish:

1 ear steamed corn, de-cobbed

1 green stalk, green onion, sliced

(optional) Sesame seeds/sunflower seeds

(optional) Avocado

Mini Crustless Vegan Quiches

I don’t know about you, but sometimes I miss eggs eating vegan! Miss no more, because these portable, snack-sized quiches taste just like the real deal!  And did you know that you don’t actually need any kind of crust for these to hold together? Keeping it simple and satisfying!  Eating well and eating vegan is no form of suffering, I assure you!  Get your nourishment and happy belly on!  

You need:

1 16 oz firm tofu

1 yellow onion, chopped

1/2 red bell pepper, chopped

1 carton mushrooms, sliced

1 large stalk broccoli chopped

1 Japanese purple potato, halved and sliced

6 baby carrots, slivered

1 large clove garlic, minced

3 green onions sliced

Turmeric, 1 tsp

Crushed red pepper, 1 tsp

Oregano 1 tsp

1 dash liquid aminos

Sautée all veggies (except green ontions) and spices over medium heat until liquid cooks off of veggies.  As you can see from my photos, I sautéed mine in 2 batches because my pan wasn’t large enough to hold them all. In this case, just use half of each seasoning amount listed above in each batch.

Meanwhile, purée tofu in high speed blender, adding enough water or almond milk only as needed to ensure you reach a creamy consistency. Will depend on how firm/drained your tofu is already. I used an extra dense high protein tofu, so I ended up needed 2/3 cup of liquid to reach a creamy, pudding-like consistency.

Pour into a bowl along with all sautéed veggies and raw green onions. Mix well. Turn into greased muffin tins. For mini muffin tins bake 350×13 minutes. For larger full-sized muffin tins extend time to 35min.  Edges will be slightly brown, and middles will be firm. Let cool slightly before removing from muffin tins, should slide right out!  Enjoy and store in the fridge to take with you for a healthy, easy breakfast!

This recipe made 6 large muffins and 12 mini muffins! Enjoy!

Warm Vegan Buddha Bowl

I gotta tell ya, hit it out of the park with this one, man it hits the spot! So creamy, so comforting, so necessary on a rainy winter day! I think I’m gonna make a bunch more so I can eat this every day! It is that beautiful and satisfying! And despite how indulgent it tastes, this is one that won’t give you a Buddah belly because it is clean whole vegan foods 😉

You need:
1 cup grain of choice, (i actually used 1 cup quinoa, 1/2 cup raw buckwheat groats
1/2 cup lentils, any kind, cooked
1 large stalk broccoli
1 cup raw baby carrots
Handful of mushrooms
1/6 large onion chopped
2 cloves garlic minced
handful fresh basil, chopped
large handful kale, chopped
coconut oil spray (always)
oregano and crushed red pepper

For garnish:
1 slice chopped large jalapeno
1/4 avocado
1 tbs sesame seeds

For creamy lemon sauce:
1/2 tsp vinegar
1 lemon juiced
1/4 cup raw cashews
1tbs tahini
Oregano, dash
Crushed red pepper, dash
1/8 cup water

Make quinoa/buckwheat in rice cooker, mix with lentils, keep warm.

Oven roast cut broccoli and whole mushrooms with coconut spray and oregano/rosemary/crushed red pepper flakes at 350 for 20-24 min.

You could also roast your carrots the same way, but I simply steamed mine in the rice cooker while my grains cooked.

Clean and tear kale. Sautée in hot skillet with garlic, onion, an basil for about 5 min, until slightly wilted.

To make your creamy lemon sauce, place ingredients in a high speed blender, adding more water if you prefer it thinner.

Place lentils/grains in bowl, top with shredded sauté.

Next arrange warm roasted veggies.

Top with fresh avocado, diced jalapeno, sesame seeds, and drizzle creamy sauce on top.

Enjoy hot and immediately, feeling comfort and well being from the inside out! SOOO nourishing and full of comfort feels and flavors. Be well!

Sauce makes 2-3 servings, store refrigerated.



















Coconut Quinoa Primavera Pasta (AKA Better Than Mac N Cheese)

Oh yum. So delicious. When made like this, creamy pasta is no longer on my no-no list. In fact my goal is to find a way to enjoy every unhealthy food I used to eat before learning about nutrition, guilt-free. Knowledge is power and this dish makes me feel strong, happy, and healthy! Also,this recipe makes a LOT of food; lunches for the week!

8oz organic quinoa pasta
1 cup canned coconut milk
1/4 large lemon juiced
Red crushed pepper
1/2 yellow bell pepper chopped
1/4 red bell pepper slivered
16oz broccoli steamed
9oz sugar peas steamed for 4-5 min only
7-8 oz fava beans, cooked

Toss all ingredients together and enjoy! For work lunches I plan to serve over some fresh spinach for extra greens. Energy all week long!

















Savory Butternut Lentils

Can you tell that I’m obsessed with both butternut squash and kale? Another most satisfying recipe with some of my favorite ingredients ensues…

You need:

1 cup brown or green lentils, cooked (about 1/3cu dry)
1/2 large butternut squash
Coconut oil spray
Fresh rosemary
Crushed raw walnuts, handful
Shallots 2
Garlic 3 cloves, crushed
Yellow bell pepper 1
Chinese eggplant 1/2 large
Dinosaur kale 1/2 large bunch

optional garnishes:
1/2 lemon juiced
Fresh cilantro
Drizzle of olive oil

Preheat oven to 400. Chop squash and shallots into 1 inch cubes and place on cookie sheet with coconut oil spray and fresh chopped rosemary. Bake for about 15minutes. Sprinkle crushed walnut on top and bake another 15 minutes, let cool.

You could be cooking your lentils while these are baking, about 30min simmer.

On the stove, stir fry the garlic, eggplant, yellow peppers, and dino kale until just cooked.

Combine/toss all in a large bowl with optional garnishes as desired. Serve warm and be nourished!










Savory Carrot Casserole

Ah, now on to the good stuff, what I really like to cook: VEGGIES 🙂

This is one of my favorite recipes, or one iteration of my favorite recipe. This is near and dear to my heart. Modified from the More With Less Cookbook, an ancient Mennonite cookbook (if 1976 is ancient…), gifted to me by my dear Aunt Cheryl, back in 2003.

This is my favorite thing to bring to “Friendsgiving” as I have not been home for Thanksgiving in 9-10 years (BUT I AM GOING HOME THIS YEAR!!) 🙂

Everyone can keep their disturbingly sugary sweet potato casseroles, give me savory carrot casserole any day! (unless it is creole/cajun style sweet potato casserole…)

For this recipe you need:
-about 4 cups of carrots cooked and mashed (i’m obsessed with TJs organic carrots of many colors; i also threw in one purple new potato just because…)
-1/2 to 3/4 cup egg whites (or 3 eggs)
-1cup plain almond milk
-about 4-5 TBS 0% plain greek yogurt
-1tsp sea salt
-dash of black pepper
-about 3 oz of shredded cheddar cheese (i used light cheddar cheese sticks from TJs, 3 sticks, shredded up)
-Fresh parsley washed and chopped (about 4-5tbs)
-crushed red pepper flakes
-handful of shredded mozzarella (optional)
-1/2 cup almond flour
-handful of crackers of choice to crumble on top (i recommend about 10 Mary’s Gone Crackers)

Begin by peeling your carrots/potato. Once done, I actually use my peeler to shred the carrots into little strips, this makes them easy to cook! I put them in my ceramic casserole dish and microwave steamed them for about 4-6 minutes until soft, with a sprinkle of water. Then preheat oven to 350 degrees. Once carrots are soft, put in a bowl.

Mix in all ingredients into the bowl with the carrots, except the crackers and a handful of cheese saved for the end. Spray your casserole dish with non-stick spray. Turn mixture into dish. Sprinkle remaining cheese and crumbled crackers on top.

Bake for about 30-35min, then do 1minute on broil at the end to get that cheese bubbling!

ENJOY that beta carotene 🙂













Cheesy Noodles!

This is my healthy take on an all time favorite, Mac N Cheese! I start with nutritious asian Soba noodles, as buckwheat is great for you, and despite the name, is wheat (and gluten) free! This is a vegetarian and can be vegan recipe and you can use any assortment of veggies your heart desires!

I used:
1/2 package soba noodles
2 slices vegan “american” cheese
1/2 cup fresh mozzarella (or vegan cheese of choice)
1-3 tbs grass fed butter (or vegan substitute)
1tbs garlic infused olive oil
3 TBS red wine of choice
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
1tbs dried parsley
1 cup mushrooms
1/4 sliced onion
1/2 large sweet potato
1/2 Chinese eggplant
1/3 small cabbage
1 small head cauliflower
3 stalks broccoli

My first step was to sauté the onions and mushrooms in the red wine. Put a little oil or butter in a pan over high heat, sauté onions until golden, add sliced mushrooms and sauté until soft, add splash of red wine and simmer 2-5 minutes. Smells wonderful 🙂

Then I washed and chopped all the veggies and put them in my steamer. Steamed about 30min until tender.

Cook soba per package instructions, mine was boil 5-7 minutes and drain.

Then toss the noodles with butter, cheeses of choice, garlic olive oil, herbs, and onion mushroom sauté. You can then serve these as one dish with steamed veggies on the side, on top, or go ahead and toss all the steamed veggies in in a large pot of bowl. So savory, so filling, and so yummy! You could also sauté some firm tofu with the onion/mushroom/wine step for some extra protein, or toss in some garbanzos. I will experiment with some of these next time 🙂 Enjoy!!