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Peach Cobbler Tastes Great When It’s Vegan and Gluten-Free!

Is it even summer without peach cobbler? We don’t think so! When temperatures are hot and peaches are ripe, what’s an enterprising chef to do? The traditional recipe calls for large amounts of butter and white sugar, but you won’t miss the rich taste when you bite into our more subtle, but equally delicious version. This cobbler is inexpensive and incredibly easy to make. You can either peel the peaches or leave the peels on. We made our recipe with peels because that’s the way we roll. The peels become soft and pliable during the baking process. Also, they’re packed with vitamins, so it seems a shame to just toss them out. You’re going to love this recipe. We guarantee it!

PEACH INGREDIENTS

5 large peaches, cut into thin wedges
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons coconut sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

DRY INGREDIENTS

1 cup gluten-free flour blend (We used Bob’s Red Mill, excellent!)
1/2 cup coconut sugar
2 tablespoons tapioca starch (also called tapioca flour)
1 tablespoon baking powder
Pinch of sea salt (not the iodized variety)

WET INGREDIENTS

3/4 cup plant-based milk (coconut or almond work best)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

INSTRUCTIONS

Arrange the sliced peaches in a square baking pan. Sprinkle them with the two tablespoons of sugar, cinnamon, and fresh lemon juice. Allow the mixture to marinate for a few moments as you prepare the other ingredients. Mix the dry ingredients together until they’re thoroughly combined. Add vanilla extract and plant-based milk gradually, stirring continuously to make sure no lumps form. Batter should be smooth and creamy.

Pour the batter over the top of the peaches, spreading evenly. Don’t worry if the peaches aren’t completely covered. Bake in pre-heated, 375 degree oven for 35-45 minutes. The batter should form a nice crust that will attain a lovely golden brown color. Remove from oven and set on your counter to cool. But don’t let it cool too much — this dessert is best served hot!

Serves 4-6 people with ease. Your peach cobbler is sure to be a hit. You can serve it as is, or with a scoop (or two, or three) of vegan ice cream such as Coconut Bliss. (Our personal favorite is the coconut flavor. It’s perfect for this dessert). This dish keeps well in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. We have been known to enjoy leftover cobbler for breakfast. Shhhhhhhh — don’t tell anyone! You’re just going to have to try this dessert for yourself, and then you’ll know why we love it so much. Happy summer!

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Start Your Day With These Delectable Vegan, Gluten-Free Morning Glory Muffins

Morning glory muffins have been a favorite of ours for many years. However, when we started pursuing a vegan, gluten-free diet, we discovered that many of our favorite coffee shops had left us out in the cold when it came to these delectable muffins. Almost all of the recipes use butter, eggs and/or milk. This makes them decidedly off-limits. If you love morning glory muffins as much as we do, you may have experienced this depressing scenario, yourself. Have no fear! We’ve discovered a recipe that utilizes your favorite ingredients — raisins, walnuts, apples, etc. However, it substitutes flax seeds for eggs, and coconut oil for butter. The result is a melt-in-your-mouth concoction that will leave you wanting more!

INGREDIENTS

2 tablespoons flax seeds plus 6 tablespoons water
1 3/4 cups gluten-free flour blend (lighter is better)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg or cloves
1/2 cup melted coconut oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup plain, unsweetened applesauce
1/4 cup non-dairy milk (almond is great!)
1/2 cup coconut sugar
1 apple, peeled and cut into small chunks
1/2 cup shredded, unsweetened coconut
1/2 cup raisins (use golden variety for a special treat)
3/4 cup shredded carrots
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

INSTRUCTIONS

Mix the flax seeds with water and set aside. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, sea salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg or cloves. Melt coconut oil on stove and combine in a second, larger bowl with flax mixture, coconut oil, vanilla, applesauce, coconut sugar, and non-dairy milk. Slowly add the dry mixture to the wet mixture, stirring until thoroughly combined. Your batter should be moist but not runny. Add carrots, walnuts, raisins, apple chunks, and coconut and make sure they’re evenly distributed throughout the batter.

Grease a 12-muffin pan with additional coconut oil, or use paper liners. Pour the batter into each receptacle. Bake in a pre-heated, 350 degree oven for 20-25 minutes. Your kitchen will smell good enough to eat! The muffins are done when you stick a fork or toothpick in the middle, and it comes out clean.

If you play your cards right, you’ll have twelve muffins that are more or less the same size. They’re great for breakfast, lunch, or as a mid-afternoon snack. Though small, they’re surprisingly hearty and really pack a wallop! You can eat them as is (scrumptious!) or with a dab of vegan butter. If you invite folks over to your house for muffins, they’ll be your friends for life. Enjoy!

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Our Yummy, Vegan and Gluten-Free Pineapple Upside-Down Cake Will Fill You With Summer Nostalgia

Many of us have fond summer memories of sitting outside in the warm sun, digging into generous helpings of pineapple upside-down cake. Of course, the traditional recipe utilizes eggs and milk, but these ingredients aren’t necessary for our delicious version. Our recipe uses fresh pineapple instead of canned. Colorful pomegranate seeds replace the usual Maraschino cherries. We recently baked this dessert for a Memorial Day barbeque, and were delighted by the stellar results. Try it for yourself, and we think you’ll agree.

INGREDIENTS

2 cups fresh pineapple, chopped into small chunks
1/4 cup coconut oil
scant cup plant-based milk (coconut or almond works best)
juice of 1/2 lemon
8 tablespoons maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pinch of sea salt
1 1/4 cups almond meal
1 1/4 cups all purpose, gluten-free flour
2 heaping teaspoons baking powder (make sure it’s aluminum-free)
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
Pomegranate seeds for topping (optional)
Vegan whipping cream (optional)

INSTRUCTIONS

Grease a square baking pan with vegan butter, coconut oil, or other oil of your choosing. Line the bottom of the pan with the pineapple chunks, making sure they are evenly distributed and not too lumpy. Melt the coconut oil, keeping a watchful eye so it won’t burn. Pour oil in a large bowl and add the milk, lemon juice, maple syrup, vanilla, salt, and almond meal. Stir thoroughly, then add flour, baking soda, and baking powder. Mix well until the mixture is moist but not runny. Add additional flour if mixture is too moist, or milk if it’s too stiff. It should have a slightly fluffy texture.

Ladle the batter into the baking pan, making sure it is evenly spread across the pineapple chunks. Bake in oven at 350 degrees for approximately 30 minutes. You can employ the toothpick or fork-in-the-middle method to see whether it’s done. Remove your cake from the oven and set on your counter to cool. Once it’s cooled, you can flip the cake over onto a large plate. If you like, decorate your creation with a pomegranate seed garnish (or fresh, de-pitted cherries, if you prefer). Serve as is, or get fancy with some vegan whipped cream.

Serves 4-6 happy people with ease. This cake keeps well in your refrigerator, securely covered, for several days. We sincerely doubt that it will be around that long. It works well as a dessert, but certain individuals have been known to enjoy it as a breakfast food. We won’t reveal their names. Enjoy your cake, and welcome to summer. At last!

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Vegan, Gluten-Free Chocolate Muffins for Your Sweet Tooth

Sometimes, when you crave something sweet, nothing but chocolate will do. It’s rich and decadent, lifts your spirits, and has a seductive flavor that can’t be beat. You can almost believe these vegan, gluten-free muffins are actually healthy. They’re much better for you than the store-bought variety, at least. This recipe features coconut sugar and maple syrup and utilizes either gluten-free rice or oat flour. You can have these muffins for breakfast or pack them in your lunch box and take them to work. Give our recipe a try, and you’ll soon find yourself in Chocolate Heaven. This treat is inexpensive, quick, and incredibly easy to make!

DRY INGREDIENTS
1 ½ cup gluten-free brown rice flour (oat flour works, as well. Try Bob’s Red Mill, it’s our favorite)
1 cup unsweetened dark cocoa powder (check label to make sure there are no milk solids)
1 teaspoon baking soda (aluminum-free, please!)
¼ teaspoon sea salt (NOT iodized table salt!)

WET INGREDIENTS
½ cup water+ 2 extra tablespoons
½ cup non-dairy milk (we used Forager organic coconut-cashew milk, it tastes delightful!)
3 tablespoons melted coconut oil
1/3 cup coconut sugar
¼ cup pure maple syrup (just say no to pancake syrup)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

INSTRUCTIONS
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and fill each compartment of muffin pan with cupcake liners. Combine flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and slat in large bowl and mix until thoroughly combined. Meanwhile, melt coconut oil in small saucepan and warm milk in another pan. Pour milk and oil into a smaller bowl and add coconut sugar, maple syrup, vanilla extract, and water. Stir briskly and then pour the mixture into the larger bowl with the dry ingredients.

Combine all ingredients until blended. The batter should be thick and creamy but not stiff.
Spoon a couple of tablespoons of batter into each compartment of the muffin pan. Place pan on the center rack of your oven and bake for approximately 20 minutes. You can stick a toothpick or fork in the center of one of the muffins to make sure it comes out clean. Your kitchen will smell divine in the meantime.

Makes 10-12 medium-sized muffins. These delicious confections keep well in a covered container. You probably don’t want to eat all 12 of them at one sitting. Invite ten of your friends over and have a party, instead. We guarantee they will disappear quickly. They’re great warm or cold. Enjoy!

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Black Bean Tortilla Soup—Vegan, Gluten-Free and Filling

tortilla soup

We love making soups in the winter. They’re warm, hearty, and help us feel better on a cold evening, especially at the end of a long day. If you’re under the weather, a good soup can nourish you like nothing else on the planet. We recently discovered this black bean tortilla soup at a friend’s holiday party and were so wowed that we begged her for the recipe. She was delighted to share it, and so are we. The concoction only takes about 45 minutes to prepare, so it’s a great dish if you’re on the run.

SOUP INGREDIENTS

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small red onion, chopped
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
4 cups vegetable broth
1 28-ounce can, stewed tomatoes (check label, make sure no chemicals are added).
2 teaspoons ancho chili powder
2 teaspoons chipotle chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon dried oregano
½ teaspoon sea salt (not iodized!)
2 cans black beans (or 3 cups boiled black beans, if you have time)
1 cup corn kernels (fresh or frozen)

GARNISHES
3 small corn tortillas
1 avocado, sliced
1 handful fresh cilantro, chopped
1 lime, cut into wedges

Pour 1 tablespoon olive oil into a large pan and add chopped onions and garlic. Fry on medium heat until onions and garlic are slightly brown. Your kitchen will smell terrific, and you’re just getting started! Add vegetable broth, stewed tomatoes, both chili powders, salt, and cumin. Simmer for 15-20 minutes until tomatoes are cooked through.

Add black beans and corn and continue simmering for 10 minutes until all ingredients are thoroughly combined. Meanwhile, cut tortillas into thin strips. Place strips in olive oil in a medium-sized frying pan (cast iron is great!) Fry strips on both sides until brown and crispy, then remove from pan. Place them on paper towel to absorb excess olive oil.

Serve soup in festive bowls with avocado slices, a squeeze or two of lime juice, a liberal dash of cilantro, and as many tortilla strips as your heart desires. We love tortilla strips and find that it’s hard to put too many into this soup. But eat fast, because they do get soggy.

Serves 4-6 hungry guests. This soup is especially good with vegan, gluten-free cornbread and/or beer. If you do end up with leftovers, you can freeze them, or devour them in the next couple of days. You will be utterly delighted by this simple, inexpensive, and satisfying meal. Stay warm and enjoy!

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Incredibly Simple Vegan, Gluten-Free Banana Bread

bread

Some folks persist in thinking that folks who follow a vegan, gluten-free diet eat nothing but nuts and seeds. If you have a friend or relative who harbors this belief, slice a couple of pieces of banana bread from this rich, moist loaf and place them in front of her/him. Then sit back and smile. S/he will be singing a different tune after the first bite and might even beg you for the recipe. You’ll be amazed by how easy it is to make this bread, and how delicious it tastes. Here’s how:

INGREDIENTS
1 3/4 cups gluten free flour blend (Bob’s 1/1 is still our absolute favorite for baking).
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon baking powder (check label to make sure it’s aluminum-free)
½ teaspoon sea salt
7/8 cup organic turbinado sugar or coconut sugar (these sugars are always vegan, unlike
commercial sugar, and they taste much better, as well)
1/3 cup coconut oil or organic canola oil (coconut oil is our favorite—naturally sweet).
2 very ripe bananas
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
½ cup water

OPTIONAL INGREDIENTS
¼ cup chopped walnuts or pecans
¼ cup vegan, gluten-free chocolate chips (be sure to check ingredients on package)
¼ cup poppyseeds

INSTRUCTIONS

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
If you choose coconut oil, heat in pan on stove top or for 15-20 seconds in microwave until
liquefied. In large bowl, mash bananas with fork until all lumps are gone. Pour coconut or canola
oil into bowl and combine with banana mixture. Add apple cider vinegar, water, and vanilla
extract and beat to a nice froth. A large spoon will do well for this task. Blend in the dry ingredients, starting with baking soda, baking powder, and salt, then add the sugar and flour. When all ingredients are thoroughly combined, grease a small bread pan with coconut oil and pour mixture inside. Bake for 50-55 minutes, or until a fork or toothpick placed in the center comes out clean. Meanwhile, your entire kitchen will be filled with the most delectable aroma!

Serve as is, or with maple syrup, Earth Balance, vegan butter, almond butter, or any other topping of your choice. It’s great for breakfast, dessert, or a late night snack. Serves 4-6, but two people can gobble down this bread in a matter of hours, if not sooner. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.

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Vegan, Gluten-Free Pumpkin Spice Muffins That You Can’t Stop Eating

muffins

Now that pumpkin spice season is officially here, you might be feeling great despair, thinking you won’t be able to partake of any delicious goodies. Fear not, because when you try these amazing vegan, gluten-free muffins, you’ll wonder why you put up with the conventional kind for as long as you did.

Beware, however – once you bake a pan of them, your family won’t stop begging you for more. If you don’t mind opening that Pandora’s box, here’s the recipe:

10 oz pumpkin puree (that’s about ¾ of a small can)
½ cup olive oil
½ cup unsweetened almond milk
¾ cup real maple syrup (NOT pancake syrup!)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups gluten-free flour (there are many varieties, but Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 flour is our favorite)
2 teaspoons baking powder (make sure it’s aluminum-free)
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground ginger (for a treat, try fresh ginger, and use a fine grater)
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
½ teaspoon sea salt

Optional ingredients:
1 cup walnuts and/or pecans
1 cup vegan chocolate chips
½ cup poppy seeds

Mix together the wet ingredients in one large bowl and the dry ingredients in another. Beat wet ingredients to a thick froth and combine with dry ingredients. Grease muffin tin with olive oil or natural, organic vegan margarine. Pour batter directly into compartments, filling almost to the top. Place the entire concoction into a 395 degree, pre-heated oven and bake for 25-30 minutes. If you can stand additional bliss, brush the tops of the muffins with maple syrup about five minutes prior to removing them from the oven. Your house will smell so divine that you won’t want to leave for hours!

Makes one dozen muffins. You can eat them as is or slice them open and put a bit of natural margarine (like Earth Balance) in the center. Or try it with some vegan cream cheese (Kite Hill is the absolute bomb). The possibilities are endless, really. We don’t recommend that you devour all twelve of these muffins at once, but we won’t try to stop you, either. They’re great for breakfast, snacks, or even for dessert. You’d better invite all your friends over, if the aroma emanating from the windows isn’t enough to lure them to your door. Be aware: this is not a diet food. Bon Appetit, and happy autumn!

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Neat Meat Gluten Free and Vegan Meat Replacer

Natural Foods Expo West has come and gone in the city of Anaheim, and it did not disappoint. This yearly conference is a who’s who of natural foods and it did not disappoint this year. From cashew ice cream, to coconut fake bacon, to the finest organic and vegan juice cleanses, the offerings were delicious and bountiful. One product that stood out is the gluten-free, vegan meat called Neat.

Neat meat replacement is made from a blend of beans, nuts and seasonings that are all vegan and gluten free. They offer 3 different varieties: Original, Italian Mix and Mexican Mix.

Original is a blend of garbanzo beans, pecans, oats, cornmeal, garlic, onion and sea salt.

Italian blend contains Italian seasonings, garbanzo beans, pecans, oats, cornmeal, garlic, onion and sea salt.

Mexican blend is a mix of Mexican seasonings, garbanzo beans, pecans, oats, cornmeal, garlic, onion and sea salt.

Neat meat is a bagged mix that is reconstituted with water and your favorite egg replacement, such as Vegg vegan egg replacement, or flax seed oil. With the ease of preparation and the delicious taste, Neat meat is quickly amassing a large fanbase, with glowing reviews:

“We ate them hot and plain out of the oven and they tasted like a fried meatball. Even those who normally eat meat really liked them.”

“Neat is so much better than veggie crumbles or other soy based products.”

“Quick family meal without the artificial ingredients and the kids loved it! Tasted just like meat tacos.”

You can get Neat vegan ground meat mix at Amazon here

And for those who are already fans, Neat is soon releasing a breakfast sausage product very soon. To stay abreast of their product releases, and purchase their products, visit their website.

neatmeat

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Super Easy Brown Rice Hot Cereal

I’ve been getting into brown rice lately, a lot. Ever since I learned to prepare rice in the following method in my rice cooker, I have a big batch of it ready cooked and ready to use, in the fridge. It’s wonderful. I love brown rice, warm with sesame seeds and sea salt sprinkled over it, cold tossed into salads, and for breakfast. The following is a very easy way to eat brown rice as a warm cereal in the morning. It’s delicious, and has no added sugar!

Here’s how I prepare my brown rice:

Rinse the dry rice at least twice.

Soak the rice for at least 3 hours in filtered water. (You can soak it for as many as 20 hours or more!)

Put the soaked rice in your rice cooker or pot, and measure in the correct amount of water, using the water in which you soaked the rice.

Cook it.

That’s it! The rinsing and soaking will yield the most amazingly fluffy, unsticky brown rice you have ever had!

Now, on to the cereal:

Super Easy Brown Rice Hot Cereal

1 – 2 tablespoons raw almond butter (I always keep a jar of this on hand)

1/2 to 1 cup precooked brown rice

1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

Put the almond butter in a microwave-proof bowl, and mix in a little bit of water at a time until the consistency of almond milk (which is what it basically is at this point).

Stir in the brown rice and cinnamon.

Heat.

Eat.

Yum!

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