Being far too prone to hangovers myself, I don’t drink very often. I do, however, believe in indulging with a wholesome drink whenever appropriate!
Organic vodka, lemon bitters, chocolate mint (yup, that’s a thing!), fresh raspberries, and seltzer combine for an irresistible, refreshing alcoholic beverage. I don’t have much to say about the drink other than to try it! The fresh raspberries provide a delicate texture, making for a fun, festive libation.
Enhanced with chocolate mint, the result is an incredibly smooth vodka drink recipe with hints of lemon, chocolate, and mint. (And everyone knows how much I love pairing chocolate with mint *swoon* )
The vodka is the first organic variety I have ever mixed with, and I am in love! It is seriously the smoothest, cleanest tasting vodka I have ever had (no more nail-polish remover here!)
When I do drink, vegan vodka cocktails are my go-to! I recently stumbled upon Ocean brand organic vodka (look at that beauty!). Admittedly, I fell in love with the bottle, but some research quickly found it is; “Naturally gluten-free”, and “contains absolutely no GMOs (genetically modified organisms), herbicides, or pesticides all of which ensure the cleanest, purest, most refreshing cocktail experience.”
I’ve paired the drink with another vegan alcohol brand, in the form of lemon bitters! The bitters add a beautiful lemon undertone to the entire drink that is exquisite. You only need a few dashes to dramatically change an entire drink!
I have a confession.. I’ve never actually made a vegan pesto recipe before. It wasn’t even until I started working at a vegan restaurant that I had a taste! I fell in love immediately. The way lemon sensually pairs with basil is almost too perfect. Known for being notoriously easy to make, I dove right into the recipe-writing and testing!
Fresh ingredients for a simple and delicious vegan pesto recipe.
I wanted to keep things simple, but also felt compelled to experiment (of course!). Nutritionally, hemp seeds and pine nuts are both powerhouses. I went with a blend for the base of the pesto. They get along perfectly, both having a semi-neutral flavor and extremely similar texture. Hemp seeds also happen to be way cheaper per pound! Yay!
(Feel free to substitute the hemp seeds for more pine nuts, as needed. It should turn out similar!)
Whole cloves of garlic, fresh basil, lemon juice, and nutritional yeast combine for a taste surprisingly similar to the non-vegan style! My partner couldn’t believe how much it tasted like parmesan, and was shocked to find out it was nutritional yeast based! (he practically hates nooch!)
A vegan pesto recipe for every occasion!
I purposefully lessened the sometimes overwhelming lemon flavor for a multipurpose pesto sauce. This is perfect on pasta (duh!), but also goes amazingly well on toast, bread, veggies, or even as sauce on pizza! The options are virtually endless! Even better, it takes less than 15 minutes to prepare, so you can throw it together last-minute.
As much as I love the holiday season, I couldn’t be more thankful for it to be over. The stress alone is enough for me to forget what day of the week it is! Knowing I had very little time to photograph or write, I instead chose to focus entirely on spending time with family. That being said, I couldn’t wait to get back to cooking! To help ring in the new year, I chose a new take on a classic.. vegan cauliflower wings. (Also a vegan ranch recipe and a homemade pepper sauce recipe to complete the package!)
The crispiest vegan cauliflower wings ever!
I’ve struggled to produce superb results in the past, creating a doughy, goop mess covered in hot sauce. Not the best combination. A tip from this blog, claimed garbanzo bean flour helped create a crisp, “fried-like” texture. Sounded perfect! Hesitant to use 100% garbanzo flour, I used a whole wheat mixture for a more traditional coating. I was blown away by the results! The coating cooked into the perfect spicy crunch over perfectly baked cauliflower. Absolutely superb.
The perfect hot sauce to accompany perfect vegan cauliflower wings!
I usually use store-bought hot sauce for the wings, which is perfectly fine! Not having any on-hand, I decided to attempt making my own. After scavenging the entire state of Arizona for fresh cayenne pepper, I resorted to a blend of Red Fresno Peppers and a single Habanero.
This sauce definitely packs a punch. I can barely handle the strong heat, but the flavor is so good I can’t stop!
Feel free to de-seed the peppers to reduce heat as needed.
Lastly, no cauliflower wings recipe would be complete without a thick, creamy vegan ranch recipe to go along (and tame the heat!)
Perhaps the easiest recipe in the trio, this creamy, garlicky vegan ranch is easy as hell to prepare! I seriously tossed all of the ingredients into a blender and ran until smooth! Use less milk if you prefer a thicker “dip” texture, more for a runnier “dressing”.
It’s no secret that I love combining chocolate with nut-butters. I’m in heaven with all of these peanut butter bar recipes everywhere! Every cafe and blog seem to be pumping the peanut butter-chocolate deliciousness out by the truckload. Unfortunately, they are usually more “candy” than snack-bar. From GMO-laden corn syrup, to powdered sugar, it’s no wonder why people are addicted. Wanting to create a healthier peanut butter bar recipe, I quickly headed to the test-kitchen.
- My recipe needed to be
- Refined sugar-free
- Packed with protein
- Great for whenever
- Topped with a thick layer of chocolate (duh!)
Finally! A peanut butter bar recipe you don’t feel guilty eating.
This peanut butter bar recipe is packed full of protein, healthy omegas, and (of course) chocolaty deliciousness! I chose to omit powdered sugar and corn syrup in lieu of agave, oat flour instead of all-purpose, and added hemp seeds for an irresistible texture. More impressive than the nutrition-profile is the taste! A crunchy chocolate shell atop velvet peanut butter combine for a perfect anytime-snack!
Speaking of dark chocolate, did you know it makes for an incredible pre-workout? Along with the countless other health benefits, it’s just another reason to be eating more chocolate.
Pre-workout, post-workout.. eat ’em whenever!
I like to munch a couple of these before hitting the gym, or even a particularly difficult/lengthy yoga session. I find the protein content keeps me satiated for a good hour (or two!). The creamy peanut butter almost melts in your mouth under the crunch of the dark chocolate for an absolute irresistible snack. Unfortunately, they only lasted 2 days in my house (they’re THAT good!) Luckily it takes less than 30 minutes to mix, melt, and pour so I always have some on hand 😉
The holidays are finally upon us! If the christmas music hasn’t yet gotten to you, kids howling over toys, and the stress of all the shopping will be sure to do the job. Oh the joyous Christmas season. Fight back against selfish consumerism this year by baking gifts! Nothing gets me into the holiday spirit quite like stuffing loved-ones faces with delicious, homemade baked goods. I needed a recipe that would reflect my love for this winter season. What flavor (or flavor combination) would be able to convey that sort of emotion??
Mint? Mint aaand… chocolate, perhaps?
Introducing a Vegan Peppermint Whoopie Pie Recipe perfect for the holiday season!
These babes are adapted from my grandmothers famous classic whoopie pie recipe, with a festive vegan twist! Dense, moist chocolatey goodness make up the cake that is then generously filled with creamy, mint buttercream and sprinkled with crushed candy canes (completely optional). The addition of food-grade (very important!) peppermint essential oil delivers a superb mint flavor that is literally the icing on the cake. It goes along with the rich chocolate almost too well, becoming somewhat of a peppermint patty… cake! Nothing serves quite as much Christmas nostalgia as a creamy chocolate treat with just the right amount of mint.
As festive and delicious as you want them to be!
In my test kitchen for this vegan whoopie pie recipe, I wanted to ramp-up the holiday-factor to an “11”. I bought a box of organic, vegan candy-canes and furiously beat them with my rolling-pin. Unhappy with size inconsistency, I gave up and instead threw them into a coffee grinder with amazingly fast results. I played with mixing the iridescent powder into the frosting, resulting in a gross, goopy mess. I finally opted for dusting the tops, for a nice wintery-powdered look.
As pretty as it looked, the mint flavor from the candy wasn’t as strong as I’d like and would skip this step next time. Feel free to experiment as desired! Omitting the mint will simply deliver a delicious, classic whoopie pie recipe sure to please.