Soy Buckwheat Zoodle Kale Killer Buddha Bowl

Okay I think I actually might have outdone myself this time. Tonight’s dinner was the most perfect combination of a zillion different flavors AND nutrients and I can’t wait to share it with y’all!

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I will share many more details below, but here are all the components of the bowl (clockwise from the top, then the center):

  • Kale with olive oil, lemon, and TJ’s Seasoning Salt
  • Zucchini noodles with olive oil, salt, and black sesame seeds
  • Steamed broccoli
  • Cabbage and beet Sauerkraut
  • Buckwheat with soy sauce and cherry tomatoes
  • Kale/cashew Pesto
  • Baked silken tofu

Although there are a ton of components to this bowl, they’re all surprisingly easy to make!

The kale salad, steamed broccoli, and sauerkraut (since it’s store bought) are pretty straight forward, but I will explain the other components here!

For the Zoodles: I simply cook the zucchini noodles in a sauce pan with just a small bit of olive oil, salt, garlic and black sesame seeds.

For the Buckwheat: In a sauce pan, heat around a cup of water until it’s about to boil. Reduce heat and add about a half cup of riced, raw buckwheat groats and add 1 tbsp of soy sauce and one or two finely minced garlic clove.  Cook for a little over 10 minutes or until most of the water is absorbed, adding tomatoes for the last few minutes.

For the Kale-Cashew Pesto, I created an original recipe! Here it is below:

Kale-Cashew Pesto

This pesto is so easy to make and it tastes freakin awesome with basically anything. All you need are the ingredients and a blender!

In the blender, combine:

  • 1/2 C raw cashews
  • 2 handfulls tuscan kale
  • 3 pinches dried basil (or 1 handful of fresh basil)
  • 2-3 garlic cloves
  • 1-2 tbsp unsweetened cashew yogurt
  • juice of half of one lemon
  • salt, to taste

simply blend all of this together, adding a table spoon of water a few times during the process in order to achieve your preferred consistency

For the Silken Tofu:

I usually like to use firm tofu, but all I had in the house was silken tofu today so I tried something new and it turned out amazing!

Heat your oven to 450 degrees and cut up the tofu into somewhat small pieces (no need to be a perfectionist) and dry them a fair amount. Spread the tofu pieces a baking sheet greased with olive or coconut oil and generously sprinkle Italian seasonings and salt (I use himalayan pink salt). Bake for about 15 minutes or until the tofu pieces are slightly browned on the edges.

I probably wouldn’t eat this tofu alone, but it was a great, mild compliment to the kale tofu as well as the other bold flavors in this buddha bowl!

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I loved this bowl a) because it tastes amazing (obviously) but b) because it’s good for my body! It’s got all all my macros and tons of greens, as well as probiotics, fiber, and vitamins. Enjoy!! 🙂

Guilt-Free Piña Colada Smoothie Bowl

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I think we can all agree that on a hot summer day there is nothing that hits the spot quite like a fresh, icy Piña Colada. The combination of coconut and pineapple are just about the only surefire way to evoke those tropical beach-side vacation feels that we’re all craving during these hot summer months.

Unfortunately, “piña colada” and “high-calorie indulgence” were basically synonymous in my book until recently, when I decided to take matters into my own hands.

The result was the most refreshing, tasty and (here’s the kicker) NUTRITIOUS smoothie bowl I have had in quite some time. Not only does this bowl satisfy those summer coconut-pineapple cravings, it also packs in fruit, veggies, healthy fats, and plant protein!

In the blender:

  • 1/2 Cup Frozen Cauliflower
  • 1/2 Cup Fresh Pineapple
  • 1/2 Cup Ice
  • 1/4 Cup Unsweetened Coconut Milk
  • 2 Tbsp of Unsweetened Coconut Flakes
  • 1 Tbsp Agave
  • 1 Tbsp Flax Meal
  • 1 Tbsp Hemp Seed Hearts

It took these ingredients slightly longer to combine smoothly than some of my other bowls, so I recommend letting it blend on medium or high for 3 minutes or until the consistency is somewhat thicker than that of a smoothie.

On Top:

  • 3 Fresh Strawberries
  • Granola
  • Unsweetened Coconut Flakes
  • Cinnamon

This was absolutely the perfect breakfast for a hot summer morning, and I will most definitely be recreating it in the very near future. I would love to know if you have any modifications or substitutions that might improve it!

 

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If you’re interested in learning more tips and tricks for low calories smoothie bowls or trying any of my other recipes, check out some of these posts: Low Sugar Smoothie Bowl Hack, Sweet-Green Smoothie Bowl, Strawberry-Dragon Bowl

 

Easy Vegan Zoodle Dinner

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Incase you were wondering what I whip up for dinner if I can’t decide what to make, here it is: One Pan Balsamic Veggie and Zoodle Dinner. And theres good news: it’s SO easy to make, and it’s SO good for you!

All you need are zoodles (you can buy these at the store but I prefer to make my own using my spirilizer which I got on amazon.com for about $25), veggies of your choice (I usually have frozen brussel sprouts and pearl onions on hand), aged balsamic vinegar, red pasta sauce, and seasonings of your choice (I use Himalayan pink salt, pepper, chili flakes, and a sprinkle of nutritional yeast on just about everything).

Here’s how I prepare it:

First I start by heating a pan on high with a little bit of oil and himalayan pink salt, and then I add in the thickest vegetables (I like to cut my brussels in half and cook them face down on the skillet so that they are somewhat crispy by the end) and then continue to add vegetables in based on how long they will take to cook. Feel free to add more oil (I love Trader Joe’s coconut and olive oil aerosol sprays) and now is the time to add seasonings like himalayan pink salt, pepper, and chili flakes as well. When everything seems to be cooked to your liking, turn heat to low and add a generous drizzle of aged balsamic vinegar. Next just transfer it into a bowl, add pasta sauce and nutritional yeast on top, and viola, you have a healthy, refreshing, vegan dinner ready to eat!

It may look somewhat complicated, but as usual it’s very simple and your dishwasher and digestive system will both be thanking you for that fact.

Keep it simple, keep it veg!!! Peace and love y’all

Fluffy Vegan Blueberry Cinnamon Muffins

I’m usually not the type who reaches for a muffin first thing in the morning, but every once and awhile I just crave something sweet and decadent in the morning. As a vegan it can be hard to satisfy certain cravings, especially when it comes to baked goods since options are somewhat limited, that’s why I decided to take matters into my own hands!

Even beyond the fact that there are few vegan baked goods available to buy (although the options are improving exponentially), I prefer my own homemade baked goods because I like to know exactly what I am putting into my body. I tend to be weary of store bought baked goods because it’s hard to know exactly what you’re getting, especially when it comes to preservatives and the quality of the ingredients.

This recipe is extra near and dear to my heart because it will forever go down in history as my very first original vegan breakfast baked goods recipe. As such, it’s extra simple with no complicated directions or uncommon ingredients which makes it super easy to replicate! I always love to whip up a batch of some yummy vegan food to share because it gives me the opportunity to show the people in my life that you don’t have to sacrifice flavor or indulgence in order to enjoy a vegan lifestyle!

Without further adieu, here’s the recipe:

You’ll Need:

For the Muffins:

  • 2 Cups of Brown Rice Flour
  • 1 Cup All Purpose Flour
  • 1 1/2 Cup Coconut Sugar
  • 3 tbsp. Baking Soda
  • 3 tbsp. melted Coconut Oil
  • 3 tsp. Ground Cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 tbsp. Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 3 tsp. Vanilla Extract
  • 1 1/2 tsp. Sea Salt
  • 1/2 Cup Unsweetened Coconut Flakes
  • 1/5 Cup Blueberries

For the Topping:

  • 1/4 cup Chopped Raw Almonds
  • 1/4 cup Oats
  • 2 tbsp. Coconut Sugar
  • 1 tbsp. Agave Syrup (maple syrup will do as well)

To Prepare:

This is the easy part! Preheat oven to 225 degrees. In a big mixing bowl combine all of the muffin ingredients except for the blueberries together until the batter is smooth and even. In a separate bowl, combine all topping ingredients to make a granola-ish mixture. In a greased muffin tin, fill each muffin hole about 1/3 of the way, and add 2-3 blueberries to each one. Bake in for 20 minutes. At this point, sprinkle the topping mixture over top of each muffin, and bake another 5-10 minutes or until the tops are just solid. Let cool, and watch them disappear! 🙂

The cool thing about this recipe is that it’s extremely versatile so it gives you the freedom do customize it however you want. For example, you may want to exclude the coconut flakes and add in chocolate chips or substitute the blueberries for goji berries! The options are endless. The other awesome part about this recipe is that the batter is so light and fluffy that it works as a vegan baked doughnut recipe as well! To make vegan doughnuts, just grease a doughnut tin and fill up each doughnut about 1/3 of the way, bake for 15-20 minutes and voila! Vegan Doughnuts! I actually made a few flower shape mini muffins as you can see in the photos below, and they turned out great as well.

Since this recipe is so new, I would absolutely love to hear any feedback or constructive criticism that you might have for it! I hope you enjoy these as much as my friends, family and coworkers that I served them to did! Keep it simple, keep it vegan and keep it whole!

Quick n’ Easy Sweet Green Smoothie Bowl

Generally, I don’t have time to put together a delicious home cooked breakfast on my way out the door in the morning. As much as I hate to admit it, I’m the girl who presses snooze 5 times on the alarm clock and then ends up rushing out the door with no time to spare. This morning, however, I found myself with an extra half hour on my hands and felt my blender calling my name.

When it comes to breakfast, I don’t like to fill up first thing in the morning because I find that a super full stomach tends to drain my energy and slow me down. So on this workday morning, it was my mission to create a light, refreshing, and simple smoothie bowl that would give me energy for the day and pack tons of nutrients into one pretty package.

The result was this Nutty Zucchini and Tuscan Kale Low Sugar Smoothie Bowl! I loved this recipe because it had the perfect texture to leave me feeling both energized and satiated, plus it tasted amazing and was packed with veggies. In the toppings, I included wonderful sources of plant based protein and fats, it ended up with the perfect amount of fortifying substance that prepared me to tackle the day. There’s no better feeling than beginning your morning knowing you have already done your body a favor and everything else you do for it is just bonus!

This bowl made the perfect amount for one medium size smoothie bowl, no more and no less. I hate having extra in the blender because I rarely end up eating leftover smoothie, so a recipe that yields the perfect amount for one bowl is a keeper for me! Here’s the recipe:

In the blender:

  • 1 1/2 Frozen Chopped Zucchini
  • 1 Extra Large Handful of Tuscan Kale
  • 1/2 Small Banana
  • 2 Large Cauliflower Florets
  • 1/4 Cup Coconut Milk (or nut milk of your choice)

Blend these together on high for 2 minutes or until the color is even and the consistency is just thicker than a regular smoothie

Toppings:

  • Banana
  • Raw Almonds
  • Organic All Natural Cashew Butter
  • Black Sesame Seeds
  • Hemp Seed Hearts


Lucky for me, this morning was gorgeous in the Bay Area and I was able to sit outside on my front porch and enjoy the early morning light while I ate my smoothie bowl. I like to power down my electronics and savor my food whenever I can, so this morning was a special treat. I would love to hear about any modifications or additions that you used to improve upon this recipe! Keep it green & keep it whole 🙂

Low Sugar, Low Calorie Smoothie Bowl Hack

I think we can all agree that the beloved trend of beautiful smoothie bowls is here to stay. There’s nothing as refreshing as a nice cold smoothie bowl packed with nutritious fruits and veggies to put some pep in my step, not to mention all the fun you can have with toppings! The options are endless when it comes to these magical meals. From all textures and colors of the rainbow, eaten for any meal of the day, and modified for every different taste and diet, new and exciting smoothie bowls are popping up in the kitchens of first time chefs and gourmet food stylists alike.

Lately, I have been trying my hand at concocting some equally nutritious, delicious, and easy to look at smoothie bowls. Health nut that I am, I tend to be hyper aware of the nutritional value of my smoothie bowls, which brings me to their downfall. There is no question that smoothie bowls are chock full of the best foods for your body, but unfortunately too much of anything can be a bad thing. As a novice smoothie bowl creator trying to get the perfect color, consistency, and volume in a smoothie bowl can lead to packing in unnecessary amounts of banana, avocado, nut butters, sugary fruits, or whatever ingredient you use to beef up your bowl. This process has the potential to yield a highly deceptive final product containing tons of hidden calories, fats, and sugars. Luckily, mother nature has provided us with some nutritious and low calorie alternatives to give your bowl that extra oomph without negating the nutrition or taste of your beautiful bowl:

Drum roll please…….

Zucchini and Cauliflower! Before you dismiss these as the perfect fillers thinking that they will ruin the flavors of your smoothie bowl, let me assure you that you can’t taste either of them at all. Seriously, at all. Since neither of these vegetables have particularly loud flavors, they are ideal for bulking up your bowl without altering the flavors you work so hard to achieve. They both have different and wonderful qualities that can add the perfect body to your smoothie in a pinch, so I like to keep tons of chopped up frozen zucchini and cauliflower on hand at all times.

Frozen zucchini makes a perfect base for a light, fresh smoothie bowl that won’t weigh you down or absorb and mask other subtle flavors. Since they’re mostly just water, you can toss in basically unlimited amounts of zucchini to make a high volume, low calorie smoothie bowl. I particularly like to use them for green smoothie bowls, or bowls where I am already including avocado or other creamy ingredients so that the texture is well balanced. Cauliflower, on the other hand, is the perfect counterpart for zucchini in that it builds a smoothie bowl to a thicker consistency that will balance out overpowering flavors. For fruity smoothie bowls, cauliflower is my go-to base even over banana because of it’s low sugar content that allows me the freedom to include more berries or flavor building, characterizing fruit.

Considering the terrific qualities that both zucchini and cauliflower bring into the mix (literally), I rarely find it necessary to choose between the two. More often than not, my smoothie bowls will include varying proportions of  both of them! Having both of them on hand is extremely convenient because it gives me the freedom to throw in a couple extra frozen zucchini slices or cauliflower florets if I want to alter or thicken my smoothie just slightly. Part of beauty of these two awesomely healthy smoothie bases is their accessibility, they are available at basically any supermarket year round! We all know that the proof is in the pudding (or the smoothie in this case), so go ahead and play around with these two magical ingredients and have fun testing out different combinations and consistencies! Keep it creamy or keep it icy, but whatever you do, keep it simple and keep it WHOLE 🙂

Cauliflower Based Strawberry Smoothie Bowl

Cauliflower and Zucchini Based Pitaya and Berry Smoothie Bowl

Cauliflower and Zucchini Based Pitaya and Berry Smoothie Bowl

 

Sweet Potato and Heirloom Carrot Hash

If I had to pick a favorite food, you best believe it would include sweet potatoes (well.. either sweet potatoes or split pea soup). They’re the perfect food in my book: delicious, nutritious, versatile, and beautiful! The first time I ever had sweet potato hash was at True Food Kitchen, and ever since then I have been trying to perfect a sweet potato hash recipe of my own.

Sweet potato hash is one of my favorite side dishes to have on hand because it’s an awesome compliment to almost anything. In the past I have used it as a topping on nachos for dinner, as a side dish with tofu scramble for breakfast, as an ingredient in a buddha bowl, as a filling for a pita, and of course as a main course in all it’s glory!

Along with sweet potatoes, heirloom carrots are also up there on my list of favorites. The two flavors compliment each other wonderfully. They also take on the flavors of seasonings perfectly which makes them an awesome addition to my sweet potato hash, bringing some new flavors, nutrients, and pretty colors to the table!

You’ll need:

  • 2 medium size sweet potatoes
  • 2 heirloom carrots
  • 6 cloves chopped garlic
  • 1 cup of vegetable broth (I use vegetable bouillon)
  • 1/2 cup diced white onion
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • chili pepper
  • salt and pepper

To Prepare:

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees
  2. Thoroughly wash and finely chop the sweet potatoes, heirloom carrots, garlic, and onion and combine them with the olive oil and vegetable broth. Roast them for 20-25 minutes in a glass cooking container.
  3. Heat a large skillet over medium to high heat and transfer the vegetable mixture into the skillet. Add in spices (chili pepper, salt and pepper to taste) and sauté 10-15 minutes or until the potatoes begin to get crispy
  4. Enjoy!

On a nutritional level, this dish packs a great punch as well. Sweet potatoes are an absolutely awesome source of healthy carbohydrates and dietary fiber as well as some key vitamins and heirloom carrots are an excellent source of antioxidants, vitamin A, and several B-vitamins. This is the perfect side dish to serve with any salad or as a carbohydrate and vegetable component of any macro bowl!

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Finished product, still in the skillet. Feel free to add in any additional spices and cook it to the crispness of your liking.

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Sweet Potato and Heirloom Carrot Hash as a component of a macro nutrient bowl! One of the endless ways you can use this recipe

I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do, and I would love to hear about any modifications or new uses for it! Stay sweeeeeet as yams y’all & don’t forget to keep it compassionate and keep it whole!

Strawberry Dragonfruit Smoothie Bowl

There’s nothing to kick off a weekend morning like a tasty and nutritious smoothie bowl. They are just about the most gorgeous breakfast food I can imagine, and they’re so customizable that everyone is able to enjoy them and taylor them exactly to his or her liking! This morning, I had a dragonfruit (also called pitaya) on hand, so I decided to make it the star of my smoothie bowl!

The result was a creamy, bright, and satisfying smoothie bowl that I will definitely be recreating in the future. Here is the recipe:

In a blender combine:

  • 1 cup frozen cauliflower
  • 1/2 frozen banana
  • 4 frozen strawberries, 3 fresh strawberries
  • 1/3 cup fresh dragonfruit
  • 1/4th avocado (for texture)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1 tbsp unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

I had my blender on high for about 2 minutes, but I’m still playing around to figure out the best techniques for blending. Just make sure to blend until it’s mostly the same color and there aren’t any chunks. You can also blend shorter or longer amounts of time to adjust the thickness based on your tastes! This amount of ingredients yielded just enough smoothie to prepare 2 small/medium smoothie bowls, or one medium/large one! I made a couple different variations of toppings:

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Toppings (Left to Right): Banana, Dragonfruit, Hemp Seed Hearts, Black Sesame Seeds, Unsweetened Coconut Flakes

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Toppings (Left to Right): Cranberry-Rasins, Hemp Seed Hearts, Blueberries, Dragonfruit, Banana, Unsweetened Coconut Flakes over top

This was actually my very first time using a dragonfruit at home, and I was pleasantly surprised at how easy it was to cut and use as well as how tasty it was all by itself! Dragonfruits are so pretty that they can be intimidating to use at home, but they are much easier to maneuver in the kitchen than other, more common fruits like mango or pineapple.

I also want to add that even though there is no protein powder included (I’m not as into using powders and supplements), the nutritional value of this smoothie bowl is off the charts! You’ve got all your macros: carbohydrates primarily from the banana and cauliflower, healthy fat from the avocado, and protein primarily from hemp seed hearts. I recently learned that hemp seed hearts are also a fantastic source of omega-3 and omega-6, which was wonderful news to me because those are the main nutrients that I struggle to find enough of in my plant based diet.

This recipe couldn’t have been better for a perfect Sunday morning pre-yoga meal. I hope you enjoy it just as much as I did, and feel free to let me know if you discover any modifications to improve upon it!