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Carrot Cake Oats

This is a take on a something I saw in a magazine article. The article had this in an overnight oats version, but I wanted oatmeal for breakfast so I made some changes that resemble some of the ingredients I usually put in my carrot cakes.

Besides, there is nothing like combining vegetables, dessert and breakfast all in one dish. You really cannot go wrong with this healthful and filling breakfast to start your day off full of energy to tackle whatever comes your way.

This is a hearty recipe for one, yet, if you do not want such a large portion you could divide up for a future breakfast for another time.

  • 1/2 c rolled oats
  • 1/2 c carrots, shredded, plus more for garnish
  • 2 dates, pitted and diced
  • 1 tbsp flaxseed, ground
  • 1 tsp cinnamon, ground
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg, grated
  • 1/8 tsp ginger, ground
  • 1 tbsp walnuts, chopped, plus more for garnish
  • 1 1/2 c almond milk, unsweetened, vanilla, plus more for garnish

In a medium saucepan combine all ingredients, except those for garnish. Cook over medium heat until oats start to bubble. Stir frequently.

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Spoon into bowl and garnish with carrots, walnuts and a splash of milk.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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Quinoa and Garbanzo Bowl

This meal was put together in just a couple of minutes. I had prepared quinoa and garbanzo beans in the instant pot earlier in the day. Because most of the prep was already done I was able to put this together in a flash.

Layer in your favorite bowl starting with the quinoa. Add the remaining ingredients.

Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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Instant Pot Garbanzo Beans

This is probably the easiest and quickest way to make garbanzo beans, or any type of beans. It only has two ingredients. How easy is that?

I made this small batch because it was just me and I wanted a neutral flavor so I could add the garbanzo beans to any flavor profile.

  • 1 c dried garbanzo beans
  • 2 1/2 c vegetable broth

I first soaked the garbanzo beans overnight, almost 24 hours. To soak them I start them in hot water.  I learned the hard way that starting the soak with hot water helps to tenderize them.

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Rinse beans.

Add beans and vegetable broth to instant pot. Cook according to your instant pot directions. I cooked mine for 30 minutes. They came out perfect with just the right bite to them, and in only 30 minutes.

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Fruit and Nut Oatmeal

This is one of my favorite breakfasts. I do not make it very often because it takes a little time, yet it is so worth the investment. I usually make this on a weekend. You could double the recipe and have some for another day during the week.. All you would have to do is add a little milk to thin it out a smidge and warm it in the microwave.

I like this combination of fruit and nuts, however I have made it with whatever I had on had. This recipe serves four generous portions. It is very filling and lends to give you plenty of energy to start your morning off right.

  • 1 gala apple, cored, chopped
  • 1/2 c pecans, chopped
  • 1/4 c cranberries, dried
  • 1 Medjool date, pitted, diced
  • 1 tbsp flax seed, ground
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon, ground
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg, freshly grated
  • 1/8 tsp ginger, ground
  • pinch Himalayan salt
  • 1 c GF Oats, rolled
  • 2 c almond milk, unsweetened
  • 2 tbsp coconut sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • almond milk, garnish
  • maple syrup, drizzle, garnish

Note: I know it looks like a lot of ingredients, but I promise you probably have virtually all of these in your pantry. You could also make any substitutions to suit your tastes or preferences.

In a medium saucepan over medium heat add the apple, pecans, cranberries, and date. Stir until well mixed.

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Add flaxseed, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and salt. Stir to coat the fruit and nuts.  Stirring frequently cook until the apple is slightly softened and the spices are fragrant.

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Add oats; stir. Cook the oats dry for about 2 minutes. This help work the spices into the oats.

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Add milk, coconut sugar and vanilla. Stir frequently.

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Reduce heat to medium-low and keep stirring. The oatmeal will slowly start to thicken. Usually when it starts to bubble it is almost done. Cook to desired thickness.

Garnish with a splash milk of choice and some real maple syrup.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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Stir Fried Rice Noodles with Veggies and Chinese Brown Sauce

This meal is a great way to use up those odds and ends of veggies leftover. Instead of rice I thought I would use Pad Thai Rice Noodles. I made a batch of the Chinese Brown Sauce that I recently posted for you. I added edamame for protein. Add the veggies and you have a quick and flavorful meal in a flash.

Just like when I made the fried rice I am using a large electric griddle to make the stir-fried noodles and veggies. It is so easy and quick this way.

  • 1 recipe of Chinese Brown Sauce
  • 8 oz Pad Thai Rice Noodles
  • 1  c edamame, shelled
  • 2 c sugar snap peas
  • 1 c carrots, shredded
  • 1 1/2 c, mushrooms, sliced, any kind you like will do
  • 1 c bean sprouts

Make up a recipe of the Chinese Brown Sauce, if you do not already have some in your refrigerator.

Soak noodles in hot water for 8-10 minutes, until tender. Drain noodles and set aside until needed.

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Heat griddle to 350 degrees. Grease griddle with oil of choice. Add vegetables (except bean sprouts) and spread out evenly onto griddle.

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Let the griddle do its work for a (2-3) few minutes.

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Flip over vegetables like you would a hamburger, until all veggies have been turned over. Add bean sprouts. Let the griddle continue to do its job, about 2-3 minutes.

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Add noodles and mix with the veggies.Cook about 2 minutes.

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Pour sauce onto noodle mixture. Stir well.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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Southwestern Bean and Rice Quesadilla

I had some of the Southwestern Bean and Rice Casserole leftover. I really did not want to eat it the same way. So I changed it up and made it into a cheesy gooey quesadilla with little effort.

Top the quesadilla triangles with some guacamole, almond/coconut yogurt, or salsa. I do not know, I might try all three toppings. They all sound good to me. I am thinking some fresh grapes to go along with these little bites – Yum.

Note: These are so easy to prepare. You could make these ahead and let the kiddos take them for lunch. Just wrap in foil, and use a little container for the condiments. This would be a nice change from the usual.

Make a sandwich with the wraps. Wrap – Southwestern Bean and Rice Casserole – Wrap

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Grease large skillet over medium heat. Place Quesadilla into pan and cook until golden on the bottom.

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Turn over quesadilla and cook other side until golden.

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Transfer quesadilla to a cutting board. Let set for a couple of minutes to cool. This makes it easier to cut. Cut into triangles with knife or pizza cutter.

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Serve with your favorite condiments. Eat. Enjoy.

Note: These would be great for Any Game Day.

 

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Southwestern Bean and Rice Casserole

This is a great hearty meal when you have some veggies you want to use before they go bad. It is easy to vary by changing the kinds of veggies you use. This recipe has a Southwestern flavor profile, yet with a few tweaks you could change it to Italian or Asian.

The “cheese” sauce adds an ooey-gooey goodness that is sigh worthy. Top with some chopped cilantro and some fresh guacamole – Yum.

  • 2 tbsp vegetable broth
  • 1/2 large onion, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 c carrots, shredded or diced
  • 1 tbsp Smokey Southwestern Seasoning
  • 2 c brown rice, cooked
  • 2 zucchini, medium, diced
  • 1 15 oz can black beans, drained, rinsed
  • 1 can diced tomatoes with chiles
  • 2 c corn, kernels
  • 1 batch “Cheese” sauce
  • Cilantro, fresh, chopped, garnish
  • Guacamole, garnish

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large dutch oven over medium heat add onion, red bell pepper, garlic and carrots. Stirring occasionally until veggies are softened. Add vegetable broth as needed keep veggies from sticking to pan.

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Add Smokey Southwestern Seasoning, stir until veggies are covered with seasoning.

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Stir in brown rice, zucchini, tomatoes with chiles, corn and “cheese” sauce. Stir until well mixed. Spoon into large casserole baking dish.

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Bake for 30 minutes and casserole is bubbling.

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Garnish with Cilantro and Guacamole.

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One Pot Mac-n-“Cheese”

 

This “Cheese” sauce is so good. It is good enough to serve all by itself in this Mac-n”Cheese” dish. One thing I like about this dish is that it is made all in one pot. From stovetop to oven.

It is also very easy to make. Easy to make and easy to clean up. That is a win-win.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Fill large dutch oven with water and cook pasta according to brand directions.

Drain and set aside.

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Make “Cheese” Sauce.

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Add pasta to cheese sauce. Stir so all the noodles are covered with the sauce. Sprinkle bread crumbs on top of pasta mixture.

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Bake for 30 minutes.

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Let cool about 5 minutes.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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Polenta Pizza Bake

If you have not noticed by now I try to come up with different meal ideas from one main meal and transform it into multiple different meals. I had recently done this with the Spinach-Artichoke Dip and now I am doing it with the Mushroom-Pepper Ragout that I served with my creamy Italian Herbed Polenta.

I first made the Italian Herbed Polenta with Mushroom-Pepper Ragout. Then I made a lasagna with the Mushroom-Pepper Ragout and the Alfredo Sauce. Now today I decided to make a Polenta Pizza Bake using the remaining Mushroom-Pepper Ragout, Polenta and some Marinara.

This Polenta Pizza Bake would be great served with a garden side salad.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Grease baking dish. Spoon remaining Italian Herbed Polenta into an 8×8 baking dish.

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Bake for about 30 minutes, until polenta is firm.

Spread Mushroom-Pepper Ragout on top of Polenta. Pour marinara sauce onto mushroom mixture.

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Top with nutritional yeast flakes and vegan cheese shreds.

Bake for 25 minutes.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

 

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Mushroom-Pepper Ragout Lasagna

I recently made Italian Herb Polenta with Mushroom-Pepper Ragout. I had lots of the Mushroom Ragout leftover. I also had some Alfredo Sauce leftover from a previous meal. Then I got thinking of a way to use these ingredients up so there would be no waste. I really do not like food waste.

Then I thought the Spinach-Artichoke Zucchini was so good why not go in that direction. So here is what I came up with for our dinner for tonight.

Because everything has already been cooked previously for other meals this lasagna is just a matter of assembling and baking. I love when I can create something from something else. Lets start layering, but first Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

For the base spread some Marinara on the bottom of the pan.

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Layer pasta on top of the marinara. I dipped it into the sauce and then flipped it over so that both sides of the sauce were covered in marinara.

Spread Mushroom-Peppers Ragout onto the pasta sheets evenly. Sprinkle nutritional yeast flakes on top of the ragout.

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Layer pasta sheets on top of the ragout and nutritional yeast layer.

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Add another layer of mushroom ragout.

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Add the last layer of pasta sheets. Spoon Alfredo Sauce over noodles so they are completely coated.

Pour marinara on top of Alfredo and swirl the two sauces.

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Sprinkle nutritional yeast flakes on the top of the sauces. Sprinkle vegan cheese shreds on top of the lasagna.

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Bake for about 55 minutes.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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