Now you can make my famous Vegan Sweet Potato Pie in your kitchen! Just add a few accessible ingredients and you're done! Use this pie mix to make One 9" Deep Dish Pie, or transfer filling to a baking dish to make a vegan sweet potato casserole. Add your own toppings like non-dairy whipped cream, chopped pecans, caramel or my Apple Butter Syrup.
For best results be sure to allow your pie to completely cool 4-6 hours in the refrigerator for easy cutting. I recommend Trader Joe's Coconut Cream which contains only coconuts. However, feel free to use your favorite coconut CREAM, not MILK.
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Try this Easy (Dairy-free) Caramel Sauce to complement your Vegan Sweet Potato Pie!
Basic Brown Gravy (Vegan)
There are lots of plant-based brown recipes out there, some complicated recipes and some with minimal ingredients. I like to keep thing simple, but I also enjoy flavor. When you're working plant-based ingredients to create something as flavorful as a traditional ingredients, it's important to use vegetables and spices to enhance the recipe so the outcome isn't a tasteless, one-dimensional gravy. For this recipe, include onions and garlic to which provides the base flavor notes. As opposed to a gravy base, Shoyu is used to add mild saltiness. It's also used to bring out the inherent flavors of the other ingredients. As a side note, Shoyu will have a sweeter, more complex flavor because of the longer fermentation process. If you're looking for a soy sauce to use as a dipping sauce or in something like sushi, Shoyu would be the better choice.
This gravy recipe is a good companion for plant-based meatloaf, meatballs, mashed potatoes and to smother Southern-style biscuits.
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Pair this recipe with Mashed Celery Root. Click HERE to access recipe.
Mashed Celery Root
Can you imagine eating the root of a celery stalk? When properly prepared and seasoned, you certainly can. Imagine that! One could easily pass right by this herbaceous, but not-very-attractive looking vegetable, as it often looks like a misshapen turnip. Celery root, also known as celeriac, is an edible root vegetable in the celery family. The stalks and leaves strongly resemble celery, although they are not very good to eat. The root itself is a lumpy tuber of unprepossessing appearance, although it packs an excellent taste and is used throughout European cuisine, especially in France. Celery root is beginning to be popular in the United States, with more cooks discovering its myriad uses. For me, once the root has been washed, peeled, and prepped, I enjoy preparing it as a simple mash. This recipe takes it step further by adding spinach, which adds texture and rich in Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, iron, folate, and potassium. Although this recipe suggests plant-based almond milk, I highly suggest coconut cream which will yield a smoother, richer mash. If you happen to shop for celery root, you can find near other root vegetables like turnips, parsnips, carrots, and beets, in the produced department.
You can find this recipe and more in FEED: Living Food Recipes to be Made and Eaten with Love
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Pair this recipe with Basic Brown Gravy. Click HERE to access recipe
Southwest Tofu Scramble
Ahhhh, tofu. The name conjures mixed emotions when it comes to eating this unusual plant food. Tofu is a curd that is made directly from soybeans and resembles a soft white cheese or a very firm yogurt. Tofu is water-extracted and salt- or acid-coagulated soy protein gel with water, soy lipids, and other constituents trapped in its network. In simple terms, the soybeans are boiled in water, the water is extracted from the bean, a coagulant is added (sometimes lemon juice when making the homemade variety) until curds develop, it's formed, pressed and presto! Tofu. This age old process is quite involved and was originated in China and has been part of Chinese cuisine for over 2,000 years, since the Han dynasty. The name Tofu literally means "fermented bean curd". Tofu does not a distinguishable flavor, and actually quite bland. Tofu is quite the food chameleon, which means it can take on just about any flavor, herb or seasoning added to it. Tofu can be incorporated into sweet as well as savory recipes like this Southwest Tofu Scramble. Many vegans and vegetarians enjoy tofu because it is a wonderful plant-based protein source, offering 10 grams per 1/2 ounce serving. This is a great recipe when preparing breakfast for your vegan and vegetarian guests. Don't forget the Sweet Potato Home Fries >>>Scroll Down for Recipe.
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Carrot Orange Banana Smoothie
This is a summer and fall favorite. Why? Because I have the opportunity to incorporate juicy oranges, sweet bananas, as well as my beloved root foods snappy carrots and spicy ginger. I've also included sea moss gel into this recipe to provide my body immune support all year long. I've listed a few add-ins such as cinnamon, as it is rich in antioxidants and other beneficial compounds. Some research suggests that it may help support blood sugar control, protect against heart disease, and reduce inflammation. I've also included vanilla which rounds out the flavor. There are several vanilla options to choose from such as Bourbon, Mexican, Alcohol-free, or a small pinch of vanilla powder. Just toss everything in to a blender with ice (or not) and blend until smooth.
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Sweet Potato Home Fries
Sweet potatoes are my favorite fall tuber. My preferred way of eating them is fresh-baked, sliced open, drizzled with coconut oil, and a dash of sea salt. I eat the whole thing, even the skin.
The sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas) is a root vegetable which is rich in an antioxidant called beta carotene and can be effective at raising blood levels of vitamin A. Sweet potatoes are nutritious, high in fiber, very filling, and delicious. The potatoes can be prepared by boiling, baking, steaming, or frying.
Sweet potatoes are usually orange but also found in other colors, such as white, red, pink, violet, yellow, and purple. Cooked sweet potatoes are high in fiber, with a medium-sized sweet potato containing 3.8 grams.
From a nutritional standpoint, the best way to prepare sweet potatoes is boiling them, which preserves almost 80 percent of the Vitamin A contents. The also helps preserve the vegetable’s water content making them easier to digest if you suffer from constipation or other gut sensitivities. However, in many restaurants today, the roots are either roasted, baked, or grilled with complementary herbs, spices and olive oil which adds flavor complexity during the cooking process. The Sweet Potato Home Fries recipe is prepared in a similar fashion and prepared with chili powder, cumin, garlic, and other ingredients. As a herb mix replacement, try my Vegetable & Snack Seasoning which contains additional herbs, spices and nutritional yeast. The recipe is a wonderful accompaniment to my Southwest Tofu Scramble.
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This recipe pairs well with the Southwest Tofu Scramble
Click HERE for the recipe.
Herbed Egg White Wrap (Keto-friendly
For the past several months, I have shared my menopause experience in my Facebook community Journey to Joy. During that time, it has been my intention to make other women aware of the many changes and challenges which comes with this season of life and the resources available to help women, like me, live a happy, healthy, joy-filled life.
During a woman's transition to menopause and years beyond, the hormone estrogen begins to decline, which can disrupt the normal patterns of estrogen and progesterone. When estrogen levels decline, one's metabolism is impacted which may lead to weight gain. Yep, the dreaded weight gain. Sigh. Not only that, the changes in the body can also affect cholesterol levels and how the body digests carbs, including (and surprisingly) some foods from the legume family, starchy root vegetables and grain-based food categories (think doughnuts, bagels, croissants)
While I won't dive into the specifics of foods which can help balance hormones, I will say my decision to reintroduce some animal proteins to my diet has been life-changing. The decline in estrogen from menopause has been linked to decreased muscle mass and bone strength.
For this reason, women going through menopause should eat more protein. Guidelines recommend that women over 50 eat 0.45–0.55 grams of protein per pound (1–1.2 grams per kg) of body weight daily — or 20–25 grams of high-quality protein per meal. I recommend consulting with your primary heath practitioner for guidance and to make sure you are consuming adequate amounts of protein. While I am not suggesting you discontinue your plant-based journey, if you experiencing peri/menopausal symptoms, I am suggesting you have an honest discussion with your healthcare practitioner about your health and what makes sense during this season of life. For me, including eggs, fish and wild game meats into my diet made sense for me and I feel so much better.
Now, onto the recipe.
Let me be honest, I love bread and giving up grain-based foods, especially baked goods has been very challenging. However, I have found ways to accommodate my taste buds using ingredients which my body loves. This Herbed Egg Wrap recipe provides the essential protein I need to start my day and it allows me the option of including vegetables or plant-based fillings, as well as animal protein fillings, if I so desire. In this case, I decided to fill my wrap with some leftover turkey taco meat filling since my body cannot tolerate corn or flour at this time, and topped with fresh cilantro and pico de gallo. In addition, I am all about ease and not spending as much time in the kitchen as I used to. This recipe can be prepared in less than 12 minutes and is oh so tasty! Don't believe me? Well, try it out and let me know your thoughts in the comments section below. By the way, you can play with this recipe by adding your favorite herbs and seasonings to suite your personal tastes.
Alrighty then...download the recipe and let's get cooking.
Easy Tuna Patties (Gluten-free)
Who doesn't like tuna? This delicate, shelf-stable fish has become a staple in my home. From sandwiches and casseroles to savory turnovers and croquettes, tuna has proven to be one of the most versatile food items in my kitchen to date. This recipe is easy to prepare and uses ingredients which may already be in your kitchen. Although I highly recommend using Old Bay Seasoning, you can always swap it out for traditional sea salt. Preparation for this recipe is less than 30 minutes with a cooking time of 6 minutes. If you are using the air-fryer method, cooking times are slightly longer.
Lemon Dill Dipping Sauce
1/3 cup Reduced Fat Mayo or Vegan Mayo
1 tsp Old Bay Seasoning
1 tsp dried Dill
1/2 tsp Garlic minced
Juice of half lemon Optional: Dash of hot pepper sauce
Combine all ingredients. Store in refrigerator up to 2 weeks.
Zucchini Bread (Vegan)
Not sure what to do with you leftover zucchini's from your garden or farmer market shop? Try this deliciously moist and easy-to-make vegan zucchini bread. For an oil-free version, substitute oil ingredient for applesauce. Let us know how you liked this recipe in the comments section below.
Chicken Taco Soup
Hey everyone! I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE soups, especially vegetable soups. I eat them all year round. I find this is a great way to get in my vegetables and plant-based protein. This particular recipe is nutrient dense and leaves me completely satiated. Although this recipe is made with chicken, you can absolutely omit the chicken to create a plant-based dish. To level up this dish, especially when preparing this dish for guests, add sour cream or plain Greek yogurt, chives, cilantro, and shredded cheese or plant-based cheese. Note for Weight Watchers: This is a 1-point dish (8 oz serving), 2+ points with add-ins and fixings.
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Regina Thomas Dillard is a certified chef, founder of Inner Sanctum Wellness, Regina Cooks Culinary School and the author of FEED: Living Food Recipes to be Made and Eaten with Love. Available softcover, digital download and Amazon.