Category

Food

Plant-powered recipes and nutrition education!

greencasserole3I’ve never been a fan of green bean casserole. Every year, I messed with it a teensy bit before serving to my family. I kept the key players the same – blanched green beans, a can of Campbell’s cream of mushroom soup, and French’s fried onions. How much cayenne or sauteed onion or poultry seasoning would go into each attempt would vary by year, but I never tried making it outside of Thanksgiving as it was just an uninspiring dish. The green beans were weepy, the cream of mushroom soup was bland and starchy. I did like the crunchy onions, (perhaps the best part!) but wasn’t a fan of these processed onions with so many unseen ingredients that were hard to pronounce. 

The Best Vegan Green Bean Casserole | SPIRITPLATEThis year, I’ve had enough. I through the whole damn recipe out the window and started from scratch (as all wonderful things are made). This time, I battered and pan-fried my own fresh onions in a little flour, breadcrumbs, salt, and cayenne before adding them atop my par-cooked green beans that I mixed with my Country-Style Mushroom Gravy that I make from scratch. I stuck the casserole in a 400F oven for a few minutes until the edges bubbled and the onions caramelized further. Slice and serve. 

The Best Vegan Green Bean Casserole | SPIRITPLATEOne bite, and I knew I had done it right. So this was why people loved green bean casserole! The green beans were still crispy and slightly sweet. The mushroom gravy lent an umami depth that I didn’t find in the Campbell’s soup version. The onions were still my favorite part – crispy, caramelized, with a slight bitterness of the burnt edges and that hint of cayenne. Oooh it was perfect! Aly commented that it didn’t even taste vegan, but quite rich and creamy as though it had a ton of butter in it – which of course it didn’t. 

The Best Vegan Green Bean Casserole | SPIRITPLATEBut fear not, green-bean casserole haters. If my vegan remix of this traditional dish doesn’t convince you, I’ve got another green bean dish that just might.

Remember, this week we’re sharing TWO recipes each day for your Thanksgiving pleasure. I hope that you’ll incorporate just one completely plant-based dish in your Thanksgiving menu this year. 

Refreshing Green Bean Salad | SPIRITPLATEIn Dallas, there’s this wonderful place called Mercy Wine Bar. My cousins and I would drop in on Mondays, as they had this incredible Flamenco band play, and we’d munch on their phenomenal food. My sister loves their sundried tomato tortellini, but I fell in love with their Summer Bean Salad (one of their vegan options). Green beans, chickpeas, cherry tomatoes and quartered purple potatoes make up this refreshing dish tossed in a mint, parsley, lemon, and EVOO dressing. The result is fresh, light, and oddly hydrating – I promise it’ll be a breath of fresh air on your otherwise heavy Thanksgiving table!

Refreshing Green Bean Salad | SPIRITPLATEIf you’re worried about this somehow being too much of a Spring/Summer dish, rather than a Fall/Winter dish, fear not. The green beans, purple potatoes, and lemon tie wonderfully in with other Fall-inspired dishes. Really this a year-round recipe, and one of our favorites.

Give them both a try and let us know what you think!

The Best Vegan Green Bean Casserole
Serves 10
Print
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
30 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
30 min
39 calories
7 g
0 g
1 g
1 g
0 g
65 g
186 g
1 g
0 g
0 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
65g
Servings
10
Amount Per Serving
Calories 39
Calories from Fat 7
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 1g
1%
Saturated Fat 0g
1%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 186mg
8%
Total Carbohydrates 7g
2%
Dietary Fiber 1g
6%
Sugars 1g
Protein 1g
Vitamin A
4%
Vitamin C
3%
Calcium
3%
Iron
3%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 lb green beans, washed, ends removed, and halved
  2. 2x recipe Country-Style Mushroom Gravy*
  3. 1/2 large onion, thinly sliced
  4. 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  5. 1/4 cup almond milk
  6. 1/4 tsp salt
  7. 1/4 tsp cayenne
  8. 3 tbsp breadcrumbs or panko
  9. 1 tsp olive oil
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400F.
  2. Place green beans on a plate in a circle, keeping the center free of beans. Wet a paper towel and lay it over the plate. Microwave beans on high for 1 min. Remove paper towel, place beans in a oven-safe casserole dish and set aside.
  3. Place flour with salt and cayenne in a bowl and mix. Place almond milk in another bowl. Heat the olive oil in a non-stick skillet over medium heat.
  4. Toss all the onions in the flour mixture until evenly coated, then place in along milk bowl.
  5. Add the panko or breadcrumbs to the remaining flour mixture. Return onions to this bowl tossing to coat in the crumb mixture.
  6. Place coated onions in the skillet, and toss pan a couple times to distribute the oil.**
  7. Cook, tossing occasionally, until onions are browned with some blackened bits.
  8. Pour mushroom gravy over green beans in the casserole dish. Sprinkle the onions on top, along with any fallen breadcrumbs. Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes until heated through and gravy is bubbling.
  9. Serve hot.
Notes
  1. *For more texture, blend only half the mixture, keeping some mushroom slices whole. See post for recipe link.
  2. **Avoid using a utensil to mix the onions as this will disturb the breadcrumbs from sticking to the onions. Toss the pan instead, using a backwards flipping motion.
beta
calories
39
fat
1g
protein
1g
carbs
7g
more
SPIRITPLATE http://spiritplate.com/
Refreshing Green Bean Salad
Serves 10
Print
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
5 min
Total Time
15 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
5 min
Total Time
15 min
257 calories
52 g
0 g
3 g
9 g
0 g
456 g
295 g
7 g
0 g
2 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
456g
Servings
10
Amount Per Serving
Calories 257
Calories from Fat 26
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 3g
5%
Saturated Fat 0g
2%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 295mg
12%
Total Carbohydrates 52g
17%
Dietary Fiber 7g
29%
Sugars 7g
Protein 9g
Vitamin A
30%
Vitamin C
77%
Calcium
8%
Iron
19%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 lb green beans or haricot verts, fresh or frozen (ends removed)
  2. 10-12 purple potatoes, boiled and quartered
  3. 10-12 cherry tomatoes, halved
  4. 1 15-oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  5. 1/4 cup mint, finely chopped
  6. 1/4 cup parsley, finely chopped
  7. 1 large lemon, juiced
  8. 1 tbsp quality extra-virgin olive oil
  9. 1/4 tsp salt, or to taste
Instructions
  1. If using frozen green beans, follow package instructions to microwave steam them, then place in an ice water bath to stop the cooking process. If using fresh green beans, either microwave them with a wet paper towel on high 1 min, or blanch in simmering water for 1-2 minutes, then place in an icewater bath to stop the cooking process. Once cooled, remove from water and place in a large mixing bowl. You are aiming for bright green coloring, with a crisp bite. Do not overcook.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients to bowl, toss to coat evenly.
  3. Chill in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
beta
calories
257
fat
3g
protein
9g
carbs
52g
more
SPIRITPLATE http://spiritplate.com/

Every day this week, we are posting TWO recipes for your Thanksgiving pleasure. Adding just ONE completely plant-based dish to your Thanksgiving spread is a welcome reprieve on this day of indulgence, and your body will thank you! 

Today, we’re serving up some Tangy Apple and Butternut Squash Soup and a Massaged Avocado Kale Salad. 

Spiced Butternut Squash Soup | SPIRITPLATE Now both of these dishes are my favorites. The kale salad I eat year round, usually plain with just avocado and lemon juice massaged into the kale and seasoned with salt and pepper. It is a staple in our household and we usually make a large batch every week as not only it highly alkaline and filled with wonderful antioxidants – but it tastes so rich and indulgent and fresh. Every now and then I like to jazz it up with some kind of onion – leek, scallion, or red, something crunchy like nuts or seeds, and something sweet like apple or tomato – so feel free to fancy this humble salad up for your Thanksgiving table.Avocado-Massaged Kale Salad | SPIRITPLATESpiced Butternut Squash Soup | SPIRITPLATE
The soup is something I’ve made variations of in the past. Every fall I whip up a pumpkin, squash, or carrot soup using coconut milk, nutmeg and cayenne. Recently however, I attended a vegan popup dinner here in Dallas hosted by Lauren of Three Twelve Co. and Lala’s Cakes – and she featured a butternut squash soup like I’d never tasted before. It had this tanginess that perfectly balanced out the sweet and savory – a flavor profile that was surely missing from my past dabbles in squash soup. Turns out, Lauren had used green apple puree to add that wonderful twang and to thicken the soup.

Spiced Butternut Squash Soup | SPIRITPLATE

This is my version of that incredible soup, and I truly hope you enjoy it!

Creamy Spiced Butternut Squash Soup
Serves 8
Print
Cook Time
30 min
Cook Time
30 min
71 calories
14 g
0 g
1 g
2 g
0 g
84 g
107 g
4 g
0 g
1 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
84g
Servings
8
Amount Per Serving
Calories 71
Calories from Fat 11
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 1g
2%
Saturated Fat 0g
1%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 107mg
4%
Total Carbohydrates 14g
5%
Dietary Fiber 1g
5%
Sugars 4g
Protein 2g
Vitamin A
1%
Vitamin C
4%
Calcium
5%
Iron
4%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
For the soup
  1. 1 tsp olive oil
  2. 1/2 onion, diced
  3. 2 cloves garlic, minced
  4. 1 butternut squash
  5. 1 cup water, divided
  6. 1 large green apple
  7. 1 can coconut cream
  8. 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  9. 1/2 tsp cayenne, or to taste
  10. salt, to taste
For the croutons
  1. 4-6 slices day old crusty bread (I used a french baguette)
  2. 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  3. 1/8 tsp cayenne
  4. olive oil, as needed
Instructions
  1. In a large pot over medium heat, add the olive oil and onion and sweat for ten minutes.
  2. In the meantime, peel and dice the butternut squash, removing the seeds with a spoon.
  3. Add the garlic to the pot and toss to coat until fragrant.
  4. Add 1/2 cup of water and the butternut squash. Cover and cook for 15 minutes.
  5. In the meantime, peel and chop the green apple then set aside.
  6. In a separate small pan, heat up a little olive oil over medium-high heat. Dice the sliced of bread into 1/2-inch cubes and added them to the pan. Dust with garlic and cayenne and toss several times in the pan to coat the bread evenly. Let toast on all sides for a few minutes until charred, then remove from heat and set aside.
  7. Add the apple, nutmeg, cayenne, and salt to the butternut mixture, and cook for a few minutes until apples and squash are tender.
  8. Add the coconut cream and then use a handheld blender or place everything in a high-speed blender to puree the entire mixture until smooth.
  9. Bring mixture to a simmer for a few moments then check for seasoning. Add the remaining half cup of water to thin out the soup as desired. Serve piping hot with garlic cayenne croutons.
Notes
  1. Butternut squash can be found at almost any grocery store in the fall and winter time. I have not tried this recipe with other squashes, but my guess would be that the structure of butternut lends itself well to a creamier soup that its stringier counterparts such as acorn, spaghetti, or pumpkin.
beta
calories
71
fat
1g
protein
2g
carbs
14g
more
SPIRITPLATE http://spiritplate.com/
Avocado-Massaged Kale Salad
Serves 4
Print
Cook Time
10 min
Cook Time
10 min
88 calories
7 g
0 g
7 g
1 g
1 g
72 g
43 g
1 g
0 g
6 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
72g
Servings
4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 88
Calories from Fat 62
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 7g
11%
Saturated Fat 1g
5%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 5g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 43mg
2%
Total Carbohydrates 7g
2%
Dietary Fiber 4g
16%
Sugars 1g
Protein 1g
Vitamin A
2%
Vitamin C
27%
Calcium
1%
Iron
3%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 bunch kale
  2. 1 large avocado
  3. 1 large lemon, juiced
  4. salt and pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. Wash kale and pat dry. Rip leaves from stems and then tear leaves into bite-sized pieces. Place into a large bowl and discard stems (or use later in a green juice).
  2. Halve and pit avocado, then scoop out the meat and add it to the bowl.
  3. Add the juice of one lemon to the bowl.
  4. Using your hands, massage the avocado and lemon juice into the kale leaves, squeezing and twisting to coat each leaf evenly with the lemon avocado mixture.
  5. When done, the leaves should turn a dark green and glisten with the avocado fat and be quite tender when chewed.
  6. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
Notes
  1. In the picture, I have stood two thinly sliced zucchini pieces on end to create a "bowl" in which to place the salad. This is purely for display purposes and completely optional. I've added sauteed leek, fresh cherry tomato, radish and a spice and seed blend to the salad.
  2. This salad can be jazzed up in any way you see fit - I've added with apples and pecans, with quinoa, plain, with onions and tomatoes. Choose toppings you love.
beta
calories
88
fat
7g
protein
1g
carbs
7g
more
SPIRITPLATE http://spiritplate.com/

This week, I’m posting two, yes TWO, Thanksgiving recipes everyday! Prepping for Thanksgiving is no easy task. You’ve got to pick your menu, make your grocery list, buy all your ingredients (and God forbid you forget something!), prep each dish the night before, and then cook ALL day to ensure everything gets done at the same time for your hangry family. Let’s not talk about the cleanup that follows!

Vegan Sour Cream & Onion Mashed Potatoes and Mushroom Country-Style Gravy | SPIRITPLATE
Then, when you think about those traditional dishes you’re consuming, well the average person consumes 4,500 calories during their Thanksgiving meal (twice the daily intake for most people!) and 229 grams of fat – that’s 3.5 times the recommended daily allowance which most nutritionists argue is too high already!*

So knowing how much hard work goes into preparing the one meal, and how much havoc said meal then wreaks on your body, it’s no wonder people fall into a food coma.

That’s why I’m posting two recipes everyday this week to provide healthier options for Thanksgiving sides WITHOUT sacrificing flavor. 

First up, mashed potatoes. I used the Creamy French-Style Treeline Treenut Cheese in Scallion to give a rich sour cream and onion flavor to my mashed potatoes. You can find this cheaper (about $7) at your local Whole Foods. Trust me, it is worth it! The cheese has the texture of cream cheese or goat cheese but with the tangy nuance of sour cream and a bold onion flavor. It is PERFECT for mashed potatoes. 

Vegan Sour Cream & Onion Mashed Potatoes and Mushroom Country-Style Gravy | SPIRITPLATE

I choose to leave the skin on because 1) I love the texture, 2) extra nutrients, and 3) it looks pretty! You can use any potato here, but I just used two large russet potatoes as that’s what I had on hand.Vegan Sour Cream & Onion Mashed Potatoes and Mushroom Country-Style Gravy | SPIRITPLATE

To get the right buttery creaminess, I used almond milk, the cashew cheese, and vegan butter. (Obviously, if you are allergic to nuts, please do not use the milk or cheese I’ve mentioned here. I would instead use the vegan butter and your favorite herbs to flavor the potatoes.)

Now, none of these are low in fat, but they are all entirely free of cholesterol and have the added nutrients found in the nuts like vitamins E and B2, and minerals copper, manganese, phosphorous, magnesium and zinc.

Use a little bit of the starchy water left over from boiling the potatoes to add more creaminess to your potatoes without adding fat. 

Vegan Sour Cream & Onion Mashed Potatoes and Mushroom Country-Style Gravy | SPIRITPLATENext up, the country-style mushroom gravy. Now, I don’t know about you but I never liked the brown gravies made from the stock and giblets of the turkey. On Thanksgiving or any other day, I prefer the thicker, country-style gravy. I used to create this using one of those just-add-water McCormick packets that used ridiculous amounts of salt. Now I make my own gravy using mushrooms for a wonderful savory umami flavor. 

Choose your favorite mushroom, and sauté them until all the liquid is released then evaporated. Add a splash of your favorite wine, salt and pepper (don’t worry, the alcohol evaporates and there will be no alcohol content in the gravy) and once the wine reduces, sprinkle in some cornstarch. Add almond milk (or soy, or rice, whatever is your favorite) and some broth, plus your favorite herbs or spices and simmer until thickened. I like to add a spoonful of the Treeline cheese to the gravy when adding the milk and broth, to give it a complimentary flavor to the potatoes, but that is entirely optional. Blend the whole mixture in a high-speed blender, and you’re left with a rich and creamy country-style gravy. SUPER easy and takes no time at all. 

Both of these recipes are incredibly versatile, as are the other recipes coming your way this week!

I hope you’ll include just one entirely plant-based side at your Thanksgiving this year. The benefits of including a lighter option far outweigh any inconvenience! Happy cooking! 

Vegan Sour Cream and Onion Mashed Potatoes
Serves 6
Print
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
10 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
10 min
141 calories
24 g
5 g
4 g
3 g
2 g
138 g
33 g
1 g
0 g
2 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
138g
Servings
6
Amount Per Serving
Calories 141
Calories from Fat 34
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 4g
6%
Saturated Fat 2g
8%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 2g
Cholesterol 5mg
2%
Sodium 33mg
1%
Total Carbohydrates 24g
8%
Dietary Fiber 2g
7%
Sugars 1g
Protein 3g
Vitamin A
1%
Vitamin C
12%
Calcium
3%
Iron
8%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 2 large russet potatoes or about 12 small redskin potatoes
  2. 1 tbsp Earth Balance butter
  3. 1 sprig rosemary
  4. 3 tbsp Treeline Cashew Cheese
  5. 3 tbsp almond milk (or soy or rice)
  6. 1/4 tsp garlic powder (optional)
  7. 1/4 tsp onion powder (optional)
  8. salt and pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. Heat a pot of water on high heat to a boil.
  2. Wash potatoes but do not peel. Dice into 3/4-inch cubes. Add the potatoes to to the pot of water and cook until done, about 5-7 minutes.
  3. While the potatoes are cooking, heat up the butter in a small bowl in the microwave. Add the rosemary sprig to the butter and set aside.
  4. Reserve a 1/2 cup of the boiling water, then drain the rest.
  5. Mash potatoes in the pot, pressing down with a twist of the wrist to break up the potato.
  6. Add the cream cheese, almond milk, spices, and the melted rosemary butter (remove the sprig).
  7. Stir together until creamy. If your potatoes aren't creamy enough, add the starchy water a few tablespoons at a time until you reach the desired consistency.
  8. Adjust seasonings, then serve hot with Country-style Mushroom Gravy.
Notes
  1. Tip: Use an ice cream scoop to serve your mashed potatoes, giving them height and dimension for a truly irresistible elegant look!
beta
calories
141
fat
4g
protein
3g
carbs
24g
more
SPIRITPLATE http://spiritplate.com/
Country-Style Mushroom Gravy
Serves 6
Print
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
15 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
15 min
69 calories
8 g
0 g
2 g
4 g
0 g
241 g
185 g
4 g
0 g
1 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
241g
Servings
6
Amount Per Serving
Calories 69
Calories from Fat 12
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 2g
2%
Saturated Fat 0g
1%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 185mg
8%
Total Carbohydrates 8g
3%
Dietary Fiber 2g
9%
Sugars 4g
Protein 4g
Vitamin A
1%
Vitamin C
5%
Calcium
5%
Iron
4%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 10-12 baby portabella mushrooms, sliced
  2. 1 tsp olive oil
  3. 1 tsp corn starch
  4. splash of your favorite wine
  5. salt and pepper, to taste
  6. 1 sprig rosemary or sage
  7. 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  8. 1/4 tsp onion powder
  9. 1/8 tsp cayenne (optional)
  10. 1 cup vegetable broth
  11. 1/2 cup almond milk
  12. 1 tbsp Treeline Scallion Cashew Cheese (optional)
Instructions
  1. Heat olive oil in a medium-sized non-stick skillet at medium-high heat.
  2. Add mushrooms and saute until softened and all liquid is evaporated - about 10 minutes.
  3. Add salt, pepper, and splash of wine. Wait until the wine bubbles away, then add the rosemary or sage and all the spices. Toss to coat. Sprinkle the cornstarch all over the mushrooms and toss to coat, until no chunks remain.
  4. Stir in the cashew cheese, if using. Add the almond milk and vegetable broth. Simmer until thickened, about 7 minutes.
  5. Remove rosemary or sage sprig. Add mixture to blender and blend on high for 30 seconds or until completely smooth.
  6. Serve over mashed potatoes or use as base for green bean casserole!
beta
calories
69
fat
2g
protein
4g
carbs
8g
more
SPIRITPLATE http://spiritplate.com/
*According to University of Utah Health Care.

The key to good risotto is patience and a strong arm. Creamy Vegan Mushroom Risotto | SPIRITPLATEYou must keep stirring, gently coaxing the starches from the rice as it absorbs the hot broth.
Creamy Vegan Mushroom Risotto | SPIRITPLATEIt definitely takes some work, but boy is it worth it. This is definitely a different take from my Roasted Butternut Squash Risotto, but the method is the same. Serve hot with vegan parmesan or some red pepper flakes for a spiced edge.Creamy Vegan Mushroom Risotto | SPIRITPLATE

Creamy Vegan Mushroom Risotto
Serves 8
Print
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 10 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 10 min
272 calories
37 g
15 g
10 g
5 g
4 g
381 g
887 g
3 g
0 g
5 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
381g
Servings
8
Amount Per Serving
Calories 272
Calories from Fat 89
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 10g
16%
Saturated Fat 4g
21%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 4g
Cholesterol 15mg
5%
Sodium 887mg
37%
Total Carbohydrates 37g
12%
Dietary Fiber 2g
6%
Sugars 3g
Protein 5g
Vitamin A
4%
Vitamin C
33%
Calcium
3%
Iron
6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 8 cups vegetable broth*
  2. 1/2 -ounce dried shittake mushrooms
  3. 1/4 cup Earth Balance butter
  4. 2 tablespoons olive oil
  5. 2 cups finely chopped onions
  6. 2 sprigs rosemary
  7. 2 sprigs sage
  8. 10 ounces baby portobello mushrooms, finely chopped
  9. 2 garlic cloves, minced
  10. 1 1/2 cups Arborio or Carnaroli rice**
  11. 2/3 cup dry white wine
  12. 2 tsp nutritional yeast
  13. 1/8 tsp nutmeg
  14. Salt and freshly ground black pepper, optional
Instructions
  1. Bring the broth to a simmer in a heavy medium saucepan. Add the shiitake mushrooms. Keep the broth warm over very low heat.
  2. Melt the butter in a heavy large saucepan over medium heat. Add olive oil. Add the onions, rosemary, and sage and saute until onions are tender and translucent, about 8 minutes.
  3. Add the mushrooms and garlic. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the shiitake mushrooms to a cutting board. Finely chop the mushrooms and add to the saucepan. Saute until the mushrooms are tender and the juices evaporate, about 10 minutes. Remove the rosemary and sage.
  4. Stir in the rice and let it toast for a few minutes. Add the wine; cook until the liquid is absorbed, stirring often, about 2 minutes.
  5. Using a ladle, add 1 cup of hot broth from the pot; simmer the rice over medium-low heat until the liquid is absorbed, stirring often, about 3 minutes.
  6. Repeat and continue to cook until the rice is just tender and the mixture is creamy, adding more broth by cupfuls and stirring often, about 30-40 minutes (the rice will absorb 6 to 8 cups of broth).
  7. Stir in nutritional yeast and nutmeg. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Serve immediately.***
Notes
  1. *A quality broth will ensure a quality risotto. You may use low sodium, but if it tastes "off" at the end, it probably just needs a bit of salt to bring out the flavors.
  2. **This is a special type of starchy rice used specifically for risotto. As the broth is added and the rice is agitated by stirring, the starches are released and produce the signature creaminess of risotto. Other rice varieties such as basmati or jasmine will not produce the same results.
  3. ***If serving at a later time, heat up some more broth and add a ladleful to loosen the risotto before serving. A scoop of risotto on a plate should ooze into a round, flat shape as shown in the pictures and should not hold its form when done.
Adapted from Food Network
beta
calories
272
fat
10g
protein
5g
carbs
37g
more
Adapted from Food Network
SPIRITPLATE http://spiritplate.com/

It is such a cold, dreary morning here in Dallas. I’ve got my fireplace lit, my fluffy socks on, and dare-I-say-it? Dean Martin’s holiday record on. Perfect Cold Weather Chili | SPIRITPLATE There are two things I always want, straight after Halloween. One is Christmas music. The second is chili.Perfect Cold Weather Chili | SPIRITPLATE Chili just screams to me THE HOLIDAYS ARE COMING. It’s the perfect bridge between Fall and Winter. Hot, spicy, and filling, chili is just so nourishing and comforting. One bite warms me from my head to my toes! Perfect Cold Weather Chili | SPIRITPLATEWhat makes this one even better is that it’s my mom-in-law’s recipe. She is one phenomenal cook!

So whip up a batch before your next football game. Cuddle up with a steaming bowl and some crackers. Freeze the rest for the next time you’re craving fresh, piping hot spicy chili!

Perfect Cold Weather Chili
Serves 8
A veganized high-protein chili, perfectly spiced for colder weather.
Print
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
2 hr
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
2 hr
163 calories
26 g
0 g
5 g
7 g
1 g
294 g
845 g
5 g
0 g
4 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
294g
Servings
8
Amount Per Serving
Calories 163
Calories from Fat 39
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 5g
7%
Saturated Fat 1g
3%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 3g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 845mg
35%
Total Carbohydrates 26g
9%
Dietary Fiber 9g
36%
Sugars 5g
Protein 7g
Vitamin A
24%
Vitamin C
64%
Calcium
8%
Iron
16%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 Tbsp olive oil
  2. 3 medium onions, diced
  3. 6 garlic cloves, minced
  4. 1 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  5. 1 Tbsp chili powder
  6. 1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  7. 1/2 tsp salt (or as needed)
  8. black pepper, to taste
  9. 1 bell pepper, diced
  10. 2 cups Gardein Beefless Ground (optional)*
  11. 1 7-oz can chipotle chilies in adobo sauce**
  12. 1 28-oz can diced tomatoes
  13. 2 cups vegetable broth***
  14. 1 15-oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
  15. 1 15-oz can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  16. 2-3 sprigs cilantro, chopped
  17. 1/2 avocado, diced
  18. squeeze of lime
Instructions
  1. Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Once hot, add onion and saute until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  2. Stir in oregano, chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper.
  3. Add bell pepper. Saute until bell pepper is browned. Add beefless crumbles if using and saute until lightly browned.
  4. Add chipotle chilies and adobo sauce, diced tomatoes, and broth. Stir and bring to a boil.
  5. Add beans, bring to a boil, and then reduce heat to a simmer.
  6. Let simmer, uncovered, for 2 hours on low heat, stirring occasionally.
  7. Check and adjust spices to your liking.
  8. Serve hot, topped with fresh cilantro, avocado, and a squeeze of lime.
Notes
  1. * - You may use any other soy crumble, or omit altogether. I like the texture and added protein, but you can leave it out if you're not a fan.
  2. ** - The chilies in the can usually come in halves. You may need to diced them up. Be sure to use both the adobo sauce and the chilies!
  3. *** - I like Not Chick'n bouillon cubes, that can be found in most grocery stores.
  4. Jazz up your chili by adding an ounce of dark chocolate or espresso for depth OR a dash of vegan worcestershire sauce for salty complexity OR diced sweet potato or pumpkin for sweet heartiness.
  5. Please note the protein count below is incorrect. It does not include the Gardein Beefless Ground which is 12g of protein per 1/2 cup. One cup of this chili contains over 30g of protein!
Adapted from Dallas Morning News
beta
calories
163
fat
5g
protein
7g
carbs
26g
more
Adapted from Dallas Morning News
SPIRITPLATE http://spiritplate.com/

There’s something about holding a warm mug that is so pleasurable as the weather gets cooler. Even in the summer, I always crave hot liquids – coffee in the morning, tea in the evening, lemon water after meals, turmeric and honey almond milk before bed. This soup is amazing and hits the spot – rain or shine. Its rich Italian flavors means it’s versatile for any season – but most especially when all you want is a steaming bowl of soup.
Pasta e Ceci | SPIRITPLATEThis soup is called Pasta e Ceci, a cousin to the more common Pasta e Fagioli that is usually made with cannellini beans. It is so simple in terms of ingredients and methods.
Pasta e Ceci | SPIRITPLATEThe trick here is to let it cook low and slow to release all the flavors. Use the sweating technique, rather than sauteing to bring out the pure flavors of the onions, tomatoes, and herbs.
Pasta e Ceci | SPIRITPLATEI guarantee you’ll be surprised by how easy it is to make and and how deep the flavors are!
Pasta e Ceci | SPIRITPLATE

Pasta e Ceci Zuppe
Serves 6
The cousin of Pasta e Fagioli, this zuppe is a simple and hearty Italian classic.
Print
Cook Time
30 min
Cook Time
30 min
142 calories
22 g
0 g
4 g
5 g
0 g
271 g
895 g
5 g
0 g
3 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
271g
Servings
6
Amount Per Serving
Calories 142
Calories from Fat 36
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 4g
6%
Saturated Fat 0g
2%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 2g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 895mg
37%
Total Carbohydrates 22g
7%
Dietary Fiber 1g
5%
Sugars 5g
Protein 5g
Vitamin A
5%
Vitamin C
29%
Calcium
4%
Iron
7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 tbsp olive oil
  2. 1 medium onion, finely diced
  3. 1/2 tsp salt
  4. 3 small sprigs fresh rosemary
  5. 2 cloves garlic
  6. 3 plum or roma tomatoes, seeded and chopped
  7. 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  8. 1 15-oz can of chickpeas, rinsed and drained OR 1 1/2 cup fresh cooked chickpeas
  9. 4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth*
  10. 1/2 cup ditalini OR 1 cup penne**
  11. 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  12. 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
  13. 2 tbsp fresh basil, sliced into ribbons (chiffonade)
Instructions
  1. Heat oil in large soup pot or 
Dutch oven over medium heat. Add 
onion, salt, and rosemary sprigs,and sweat for several minutes, until the onions are translucent and the rosemary fragrant.
  2. Add the garlic, stir, and sweat for a couple more minutes.
  3. Add the tomato paste, stir thoroughly to evenly coat onions with the paste. Add the fresh tomatoes and cook down, stirring occasionally until completely softened and the oil separates from the tomatoes - about 10 minutes. Remove the rosemary sprig.
  4. Add the chickpeas and turn up the heat. Stir to coat the chickpeas in the mixture and turn up the heat to medium high. Toast the chickpeas so they get some color from the oil and high heat.
  5. Once toasted, mash half the chickpeas against the side of the pot with the back of a wooden spoon. (The starches released will thicken the broth.)
  6. Add the broth and bring to a boil. Add the pasta and cook until al dente, about 10 minutes. Remember the pasta will soften as it sits in the hot broth, even after being removed from the heat.
  7. Check for seasoning, adding salt as needed, pepper, and red pepper flakes (if using).
  8. Remove from heat and serve piping hot with fresh basil and crusty bread.
Notes
  1. *I love Not Chick'n Bouillon cubes.
  2. **Using a high-quality laminated pasta (I used a rough textured penne made from bronze plates - read your pasta box labels to know how they're made) and cooking it in the broth rather than a separate pot yields two results: one, the pasta absorbs the flavorful liquid and is infused with the flavor of the broth, and two, the starches released from the pasta (and chickpeas) thickens the broth further.
beta
calories
142
fat
4g
protein
5g
carbs
22g
more
SPIRITPLATE http://spiritplate.com/

Hot and hearty, generously spiced with a light sweetness and a delicate crunch — perfect for a rainy autumn afternoon. Hearty Stuffed Acorn Squash | SPIRITPLATEThis is one of those amazing dishes that is so easy, you just have to let it sit and let the heat do it’s own thing. It’s also extremely versatile; you can use whatever flavor profile you like!Hearty Stuffed Acorn Squash | SPIRITPLATEHere, I’ve used Indian flavors, with curry powder, cumin, coriander, and ginger. I’ve made this several times, all with different flavors – lemongrass, galangal, with cilantro and basil for Thai, or jalapeno, oregano, and paprika for a Mexican spin, or even added tomato paste, rosemary and basil for an Italian flair. The flavors are entirely up to you.
Hearty Stuffed Acorn Squash | SPIRITPLATE
Hearty Stuffed Acorn Squash | SPIRITPLATE
Hearty Stuffed Acorn Squash | SPIRITPLATEDoesn’t this just look so cozy?!Hearty Stuffed Acorn Squash | SPIRITPLATE

Hearty Stuffed Acorn Squash
Serves 4
Filling and flavorful stuffed acorn squash is an elegant addition to your holiday table.
Print
Cook Time
1 hr 15 min
Cook Time
1 hr 15 min
314 calories
48 g
0 g
11 g
12 g
4 g
416 g
204 g
4 g
0 g
7 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
416g
Servings
4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 314
Calories from Fat 96
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 11g
17%
Saturated Fat 4g
19%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 5g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 204mg
9%
Total Carbohydrates 48g
16%
Dietary Fiber 11g
42%
Sugars 4g
Protein 12g
Vitamin A
112%
Vitamin C
56%
Calcium
18%
Iron
25%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 2 tsp coconut oil, divided
  2. 2 garlic cloves, sliced
  3. 1 small thumb ginger, minced (optional)
  4. 1 cup onions, diced
  5. 1 cup frozen spinach, thawed*
  6. 1 cup mushrooms, diced
  7. 1/2 cup sundried tomatoes, sliced
  8. 1-1 1/2 cup red kidney beans**
  9. 2 small acorn squash
  10. 2 sprigs parsley or cilantro
  11. 1 1/2 tablespoon spices of your choice***
  12. 1/2 cup cashews****
  13. salt, to taste
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400F.
  2. Wash the outsides of the two acorn squashes and using a sharp knife, divide each squash into two equal halves. Scrape out the seeds and score the inner flesh with shallow cuts.
  3. Take 1 tsp of coconut oil in your hands and rub the oil generously all over each half. Sprinkle each half with salt and place open side down on a dark baking sheet.
  4. Bake for 1 hour or more until very tender.
  5. While the squash is baking, heat a large pan over medium heat. Once hot, add 1 tsp coconut oil. Add the onions, a pinch of salt, and sweat for 10 minutes or until soft and translucent - careful not to brown at all.
  6. Add the garlic and sweat for another 2 minutes. Then add your choice spices, mushrooms, and sundried tomatoes. Keep sweating for 15 minutes, until everything has softened and the mixture is fragrant.
  7. While the mixture is sweating, toast the cashews in a separate small pan set to medium high heat. Toss the cashews in your choice seasoning then add them to the hot pan. Keep moving them around to prevent burning and ensure even toasting. Once golden brown and fragrant remove from heat, and set aside.
  8. Back in your main pan, add the spinach and toss in the onion tomato mixture to coat evenly. Cook until heated through. Fold in the kidney beans and let heat through. Taste for salt.
  9. Crush your toasted cashews and chop up your cilantro, parsley, or other herb.
  10. Check your squash. If it is fork tender, carefully remove from pan and set open face up on a plate. Fill each crevice generously with your pan mixture.
  11. Top each squash half with crushed cashews and chopped herbs. Serve piping hot.
Notes
  1. * - I like using frozen spinach here, because I know it is more fresh and I don't mind the texture as it will be cooked down anyway. If using fresh, triple the amount.
  2. ** - For more flavor, make your own beans! Soak the beans overnight, and then boil the next day over medium high heat for 45 minutes or until tender with your choice seasonings. The beans will absorb whatever flavors you put into the boiling liquid. Here I used salt, ginger, bay leaf, and fenugreek seeds.
  3. *** - This recipe is extremely versatile. I have made the squash Thai style with lemongrass, galangal, and cilantro, Mexican style with jalapeno, oregano and paprika, and Italian style with more tomato, rosemary, and basil. Here I've made curried squash, using curry powder, paprika, cumin, coriander, and ginger.
  4. **** - When toasting the cashews, use whatever seasoning you have chosen for the squash. Here I tossed them with salt and curry powder.
beta
calories
314
fat
11g
protein
12g
carbs
48g
more
SPIRITPLATE http://spiritplate.com/