Crispy Baked Cauliflower (with option to bathe in Hot Chili Oil) [Vegan & Plant-Based]

Yield:. 1 to 2 servings (depending on how hungry you are and whether you serve anything alongside)

1/4 cup vegan mayo (I used Walton Farms no-calorie)

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon onion powder

1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika

1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

Approximately 25 cauliflower florets

Hot Chili Oil (see back below)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper. Place mayonnaise in a shallow carton or bowl. Whisk together remaining ingredients except cauliflower in a small deeper carton or bowl. Add cauliflower florets about three at a time to mayo and coat well using fingers. Drop into flour mixture, shake to coat, and place a couple inches apart on lined baking sheet. Repeat with remaining florets. Bake 15 minutes, turn, and bake 15 more minutes. Serve with sauce of choice or, do as I do and dip each floret quickly into hot chili, place on serving plate, sprinkle with sliced green onion and peanuts and serve immediately with chopsticks.

Hot Chili Oil Hack: purchase a prepared product, but decant into a larger jar, and add lots more oil, 5 large cloves sliced garlic softened for 30 seconds in microwave, and salt to taste. I love a neutral oil, but, when I discovered I was out, I learned that blood orange-infused oil is absolutely lovely with the chilies.

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Healthier Carrot Cake with Bourbon-Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting (vegan & plant-based)

Yield: 1-6″ two-layer cake or 1-8″ one-layer cake

I still wonder how a cake this moist and delicious can only include 2 tablespoons oil. And if you choose Trivia Blend or Swerve brown sugar over regular, no one will ever know. But let’s talk about this frosting: after trying one bite of this version with no butter, shortening, or powdered sugar, I doubt I will ever go back. It is creamy, tangy, sweet, and can even be piped. What’s not to love?

1 and 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (basically, cinnamon and ginger) 1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/3 cup brown sugar (I used Truvia Blend Brown Sugar; Swerve would also work well)
1/3 cup agave nectar
1/2 cup apple butter
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 cup shredded or fairly finely processed carrots 2/3 cup fairly finely chopped pecans
Optional but recommended: 1 tablespoon bourbon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
Cream Cheese Frosting (recipe follows)

Grease and flour a 6- or 8″ round cake pan. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In large bowl, stir together all ingredients just until completely combined. Transfer into prepared pan, and gently smooth tip. Bake approximately 25 minutes for 8″ cake and 35 for 6″ cake or just until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes on wire rack, run knife around edge of pan, and invert onto wire rack to cool completely. If making the 6″ two-layer cake, halve horizontally with a serrated knife. Frost between layers if making the layer cake, as well as top, and sides of cake. Decorate as desired with pecans. Serve immediately or cover and store in refrigerator. Best served at room temperature.

Cream Cheese Frosting:
8 ounces vegan cream cheese
1/3 cup agave nectar (or a little more to reach desired consistency)
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Optional but recommended: 1 teaspoon Bourbon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract

Decoration: toasted or plain finely chopped pecans and pecan halves

With an electric mixer, cream together all ingredients, except pecans, until fluffy. (Too little agave nectar may allow frosting to crack.)

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Rosemary – and Lavender – Infused Bourbon-Fig Ice Cream (vegan & plant-based)

Yield: 1 quart

This beautiful, silky, and delectable treat tastes like a salted caramel ice cream with subtle notes of rosemary, lavender, bourbon, and fig.

1 cup non-dairy milk, divided

3 tablespoons cornstarch or arrowroot powder

10 fresh figs, pureed until quite smooth

3/4 cup brown sugar (I actually used one 1/2 cup swerve reduced calorie brown sugar and 1/4 cup regular brown sugar)

1/2 to 1 teaspoon sea salt

2 cups soy creamer or non-dairy half and half (I use Silk brand)

Approximately 5 sprigs fresh rosemary, about 4 inches in length

1 tablespoon culinary lavender

2 teaspoons bourbon

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

In a small cup or bowl combine 1/4 cup non-dairy milk with cornstarch or arrowroot, whisking until smooth. In a medium saucepan, whisk together all remaining ingredients and place over medium heat. Once mixture begins to boil, whisk in soy milk and cornstarch mixture, and cook 1 to 2 minutes, whisking continually and lowering heat if necessary, until mixture is very thick. Poor mixture through a fine strainer, pressing firmly on solids to extract all flavors. Cool mixture to room temperature, and then refrigerate, covered, for 2 to 3 hours or longer. Freeze according to your ice cream maker’s instructions. Serve immediately as soft serve, or return to freezer to freeze more solidly. If too frozen when ready to serve, just soften at room temperature or in microwave for a few seconds.

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Grilled Corn & Sweet Chili Aioli Dip (vegan & plant-based)

Yield: 2 servings

Dinner time arrived last night before I had a plan. Suddenly, I was famished.

While Bob deep fried pita triangles–only 30 seconds at 375 degrees–I opened the fridge to discover we had 3 cobs of grilled corn and sweet chili aioli: approximately equal parts commercially prepared sweet chili sauce and vegan mayo (I use Walton Farms no-calorie mayo…so I can have deep fried pita triangles) with a little fresh lime juice. So I whipped this together in a couple of minutes.

Grilled Corn Dip with Sweet Chili Aioli

Grilled corn cut from 3 cobs

6 Tri-color cherry tomatoes, cut into quarters or sixths

2 tablespoons, thinly sliced green onion

1 teaspoon minced fresh cilantro

Approximately 2 tablespoons sweet chili aioli or to taste (or 1 tablespoon vegan mayonnaise plus 1 tablespoon prepared sweet chili sauce and a squeeze of lime juice)

Sea salt, if needed, and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Place all ingredients in a medium bowl, start together with a fork, and serve with fried pita triangles, chips, crackers, or the vegetables slices and sticks of your choice. If not serving immediately, store in the refrigerator in an airtight container.

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Panini Hack (Hint: whip out your waffle iron!)

Have you ever made a sandwich in a waffle iron? You will never eat a plain sandwich again and no panini press is needed! It takes longer to heat up the waffle iron than it does to grill the sandwich and you can make two at a time!

This tasty one was filled with vegan cheese, halved cherry tomatoes, thinly sliced yellow onion, and baby kale leaves. The whole grain bread was spread with chutney and no calorie vegan mayo!

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GF Press-In Pie or Tart Crust–Delicious, Quick, Easy, & Low-Fat! (vegan & plant-based)

Yield: 4-4″ tartlet or one 8″ tart shell

This may be my favorite crust yet!

Not only is it tasty enough to eat on its own, but it goes together in a snap.

After only 10 to 12 minutes of baking, you can fill it however you choose. It is sturdy enough for whatever you put in it, but not too!

In the photo, I used red pepper hummus, tomato, red onion, and vegan parmesan cheese for a very filling lunch.

If you would rather take this in a sweet direction for a dessert, just omit garlic powder, and add a couple tablespoons granulated or brown sugar.

You may never need another crust recipe!

Press-In Tart or Pie Crust

1 1/2 cup old-fashioned oats (if you are GF, check package label for possible cross-contamination from gluten-containing grains; Quaker Oats produces a guaranteed GF oat)

1/2 cup nuts, salted or not

2 tablespoons tahini

2 tablespoon vegetable oil or olive oil

2 tablespoons non-dairy milk

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

Optional: 1/4 teaspoon additional ground spices of choice (cumin, smoked paprika, Zataar, etc.)

Optional: 1/8 teaspoon onion powder

Sea salt to taste

Note: if making a dessert, omit garlic powder and any savory spices and add 2 tablespoons granulated or brown sugar

Preheat oven to 350°. Arrange tart pans on baking sheet. Place all ingredients in food processor and process until finally ground and mixture comes together. A little bit of dough, when pinched between your fingers, should hold together beautifully. Press dough evenly onto sides and bottom of pan(s). Bake about 10 to 12 minutes or until lightly golden brown. Fill as desired.

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Luscious Lemon Layer Cake with Blood Orange-Lemon Curd and Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting (vegan & plant-based)

Yield: 1-6″ two-layer cake

Note: to make an 8″ two-layer cake, double recipe; to make an 8″ three-layer cake, triple recipe

You will want to wrap yourself in this cooling, lusciousness whose cake layers are tender, moist, and perfectly complimented by the silky curd and creamy frosting, all of it boldly kissed with citrus.

My first two attempts at the perfect lemon cake layers resulted in gummy dense disks. But the third time’s the charm. The secret? Mostly, leaving out egg replacer and adding soda and more baking powder.

Luscious Lemon Layer Cake with Blood Orange-Lemon Curd and Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting (vegan & plant-based)

1/4 cup vegan butter, softened
1/4 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 to 1 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup + 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
2/3 cup non-dairy milk
Zest and juice 1 large lemon (about 2 tablespoons juice)
Blood Orange-Lemon Curd (recipe follows)
Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting (recipe follows)
Garnish: thin lemon slices

Grease and flour a 6″ round cake pan. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream together butter, oil, sugar, vanilla, and almond extract. Add half of flour; all of baking powder, soda, and salt; and half of milk. Combine well with mixer on medium-low speed, scraping down sides of bowl as necessary. Repeat with remaining flour and milk, continuing to scrape down sides of bowl as needed. Add zest and juice and, with mixer on medium-low speed, incorporate completely into batter. Transfer into prepared pan. Bake for 25 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in very center comes out clean. Cool 20 minutes in pan, run knife around edge, invert onto wire rack, and cool completely (or it will soften/melt frosting/curd). Slice cake in half horizontally using a serrated knife. Spread bottom half with frosting. Pipe a border or dam around edges to contain curd if desired, and spread about 1/4 curd inside. Top with second half and repeat. Frost sides and decorate with lemon slices.

Blood Orange-Lemon Curd
(Note: this makes twice as much as you need for 6″ two-layer cake and exactly enough for 8″ two-layer cake. Double only if making 8″ three-layer cake.)

1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
Pinch sea salt
Juice and zest 1/2 blood orange
Juice and zest 1/2 large lemon
1/2 cup non-dairy milk

Whisk together in small saucepan over medium heat. Simmer, continuing to whisk until very thick. Cool and then chill thoroughly. (Will thicken more as it cools.)

Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting

1/4 cup vegan butter
1/4 cup vegetable shortening
1/4 cup vegan cream cheese
Zest and juice 1 large lemon
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 to 1 teaspoon almond extract
3 cups powdered sugar (or more to reach desired consistency, as vegan butters and cream cheeses have varying moisture content)

Cream together all ingredients except powdered sugar. Add 1 cup powdered sugar, blend in on low speed, increase speed, and continue beating until fluffy. Repeat with remaining 2 cups powdered sugar, adding more if necessary to reach desired consistency for spreading/piping. Chill until ready to use.

#vegan #veganrecipes #veganfoodshare #veganfoodporn #plantbased #plantbasedrecipes #plantbasedfoodshare #plantbasedfoodporn #vegancake #plantbasedcake #veganlemoncake ##plantbasedlemoncake

GF Battered & Oven-“Fried” Tofu Cubes (vegan – plant-based)

Yield: 2 dozen cubes

My crunchy oil-free batter is gluten-free because it requires no flour. That’s right: I mix GF nutritional yeast with dill pickle juice and spices before battering and baking these crispy cubes. I love my spice blend, but substitute other spices to suit your mood. Crunchy-on-the-outside and tender-on-the-inside, these nuggets are nutritious and delicious on their own, but even more mouth-watering with a dipping sauce.

16 ounces extra-firm tofu (wrap in paper towel, place on a rack over a bowl, weight–I place the carton on top with a heavy canned good inside–and drain while making batter)

1/2 cup dill pickle juice

1 cup nutritional yeast

1/2 teaspoon each of the following spices (or to taste; feel free to change proportions or substitute): celery seed, ground coriander, garlic powder, onion powder, smoked paprika, tumeric

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Dipping Sauce: equal parts vegan mayo and sweet chili sauce, whisked together (I use Walton Farms no-calorie mayo from Harris Teeter)

Optional garnish: sliced green onions

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Spray baking sheet liberally with non-stick spray. In tofu carton or small bowl, whisk together dill pickle juice, nutritional yeast, and spices. Unweight and unwrap tofu and blot again with paper towel. Slice in half horizontally and then into quarters the long way and thirds the short way, making 2 tiers of 12 cubes. Working with a few cubes at a time, place in batter, turn to coat, and place about 1.5 inches apart on prepared baking sheet. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until golden and crispy. Avoid burning around edges. Serve immediately with dipping sauce, garnished if desired.

Note: in the photo, I decorated the top of the sauce with 3 dots of Sriracha

#vegan #veganrecipes #veganfoodshare #veganfoodporn #plantbased #plantbasedrecipes #plantbasedfoodshare #plantbasedfoodporn #vegantarts #plantbasedtarts #veganfriedtofu #ovenfriedtofu #plantbasedfriedtofu

Mini Rasberry-Chocolate Mousse Tarts with GF Crust (vegan & plant-based)

Yield: 1 dozen

These right here are a little blast of summer!

If it is extra hot, as it is here in Southeastern Virginia this July, pop these babies in the freezer for a bit before serving. They will cool you right down and perk you right up.

A note about the garnish: I sprinkle my tarts with mini white chocolate chips, but if you don’t have any, just sprinkle with a little powdered sugar for a bit of color contrast. The little bites of white chocolate are nice, but probably not worth making a special purchase. If you use the powdered sugar, be sure to dust the tarts just before serving.

1/2 cup pecans, plain or toasted

1/2 cup shredded coconut (I like unsweetened)

1/4 to 1/2 cup dates or dry figs, stemmed (this may sound like a big difference, but it depends on how moist the fruit is)

Pinch sea salt

Vegan Chocolate Mousse (recipe follows)

Vegan Chocolate Ganache (recipe follows)

12 fresh raspberries, rinsed and patted very dry

Approximately 2 tablespoons mini vegan white chocolate chips or powdered sugar

Garnish: fresh mint sprigs

Place 12 mini muffin cups liners in muffin tin. in food processor, a small one if you have it, process together pecans, coconut, and one quarter cup of figs or dates, and salt. Process until the mixture starts to hold together. If It holds together when pinched between your fingers, it is the right consistency. If not, keep adding figs or dates, one or two at a time. Divide mixture among lined muffin cups and press into bottoms. Fill each with chocolate mousse. (If there is any mousse left over, spoon into a carton and chill, covered, for another use.) Refrigerate for an hour or so and then prepare chocolate ganache, swirling about 1/12 of the mixture in the center of each tart. While ganache is still soft and pliable, press a raspberry gently into the center and garnish with white chocolate chips. Return to refrigerator until chilled through. If using powdered sugar, dust just prior to serving. Serve with mint sprigs if desired. For a quick cool-down treat, freeze the tarts for about a half hour before serving.

Vegan Chocolate Mousse:

8 ounces firm or tofu (if you purchase blocks in 14 ounces rather than 16, use half or 7 ounces)

6 ounces vegan chocolate chips, melted and cooled slightly

1/4 cup sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 teaspoon almond extract (it masks the slightly off-taste of silken tofu)

Pinch sea salt

Optional: 1 tablespoon raspberry liqueur

Vegan Chocolate Ganache:

2 tablespoons non-dairy milk, half-and-half or creamer

1/4 cup vegan chocolate chips

Heat non-dairy milk in small cup in microwave or until very warm. Whisk in chocolate chips and let cool until very spreadable, but not warm enough to melt mousse.

#vegan #veganrecipes #veganfoodshare #veganfoodporn #plantbased #plantbasedrecipes #plantbasedfoodshare #plantbasedfoodporn #vegantarts #plantbasedtarts #veganchocolate #plantbasedchocolate

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