Vegan Crockpot Tacos

Since I’m currently 36 weeks + 3 days pregnant I’m in major nesting mode between cleaning, organizing and cooking I’m trying to do everything I can to get ready for baby.  This includes some make ahead meals.  Now I certainly do not intend for these to last another month, but it does means I will be testing recipes that are quick, easy and can be made ahead prior to baby’s arrival.  It also means finding very simple recipes that my hubby can easily re-produce while I’m in resting, healing and taking care of baby mode.

So in an attempt to find a few more creative ideas I went to Pinterest and found a really tasty looking mexican quinoa crockpot recipe and thought I would give it a try. I stumbled across this really fantastic blog, Chelsea’s Messy Apron.  I wanted to give her tacos a try but of course add my own spin on them but it was a great base and thought starter for me.  She also has beautiful food pics which I always appreciate!

Super easy just throw everything in the crockpot.  PRep time is minimal and really easy.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups quinoa
  • 1 cup vegetable stock
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tomatoes diced
  • 1 can organic corn
  • 1 tbsp Spiceologist Chili Margarita Lime Seasoning
  • 1 tsp avocado oil
  • 1 tbsp taco seasoning
  • 2 tbsp sriracha
  • 1/2 can enchilada sauce
  • 1 chopped jalapeno pepper (with seeds removed to take out the spice)
  • 1 fresh squeezed lime (1/2 for crockpot mixture and 1/2 for garnish when serving)

Instructions:

  1. In a large crockpot add the all the ingredients above. Make sure to rinse the beans, corn and quinoa prior to adding to the crockpot.
  2. Stir. Cover and cook on high for 2.5 – 3 hours.  Make sure to check this as all crockpots cook at different speed and temps.  You may want to add more time if needed.
  3. When quinoa is fully cooked serve on tortillas or alone.  I made paleo tortillas the other day and they are a huge hit with my hubby and I so we will probably use these rather than buying tortillas.  Link to the recipe here
  4. Lasty, garnish with your favorite toppings.   I love garnishing with avocado and fresh squeezed lime.

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Can’t Beet this veggie burger!

If you love veggie burgers like I do then you are constantly on the hunt for the next best, freshly created burger.  If not, you opt to create you own.  The thing about great veggie burgers is they are mushy, messy and typically very hard to maintain in burger form which is ironic they are called a burger.  However, the point is that these delicious variations take some prep time and its certainly not something you want to make on a Monday night after work for dinner.  This is more of a weekend project where you have time, are ready to make a mess and stock up for the weeks ahead.

The wonderful things about pepping these burgers is you can freeze them and save them for months.  I have a constant stock in my freezer to take out at any given time.  I like to always have something available for a very quick meal on the go or a late dinner after a long day.  The other great thing is they are filled with so many veggies and beans they literally provide all of the essential nutrients and macros in one patty that you would need to create for an entire meal.  It makes it easy to everything at once on the go!  Now, who can resist making these after hearing that?  I mean, there’s no downside except the prep!

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These veggie burgers are also gluten free, vegan and all freaking natural just the way I like them!  Now, get ready to make you kitchen and hands a mess!  Have fun!!

  • 3 medium roasted red beets
  • 1 large roasted parsnip
  • 4 roasted Jerusalem artichokes
  • 2 large roasted carrots
  • 2 cups chopped kale
  • 1/2 cup kidney beans
  • 3/4 cup brown rice cooked
  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • 3-4 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1/4 cup chickpea flour
  • 2 cans black beans
  • 1-2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp brown mustard
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1 tbsp Spiceologist Greek Freak
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 large egg
  • sea salt
  • black pepper

First, roast the beets, carrots, parsnips & artichokes at 400 degrees for 50-60 minutes.  Set aside and cool.

Meanwhile, bring approx 2 cups of water to a boil and add brown rice.   Set aside and let drain and cool.

Begin sauteing garlic, onions and kale with olive oil.  this shold soften the onions and kale but shouldn’t be charred just golden brown.

Peel and chop the roasted veggies and set aside.

Drain and rinse the beans.

Add all of the veggies, oats and beans to the food processor.  You may have to process half the mix and then the second half.  Once you have processed lightly for about 5-10 seconds then combine in large bowl.  Add the brown rice, spices, egg & flour.

Heat a large pan with a generous amount of olive oil.  form mix into patties the size of your palm.  They  will more look like balls but that’s ok!  They don’t form right way and take a minute to simmer in the olive oil to form and brown.  Let simmer on each side for approx 5-8 minutes.  Make sure both sides are brown/charred and carefully continue flipping until the patties have hardened enough to remove from the pan.

Once you remove from pan, move immediately to parchment paper to cool.  Let set for approx 5-10 minutes and they are ready to eat!  If you are planning to store them, let cool for 30-45 min before packaging.  I like to keep them in the freezer and heat in the microwave whenever needed.

I hope you enjoy!!!  Until next time, I’d love to hear feedback or tag me in your pictures if you try the recipe @AngieRHart1 on Instagram!!

 

 

Meatless Monday Lentils

I try to make an effort to post on a regular basis but I’m a bit lagging due to my busy schedule.  I have very long and full days starting with a 5am wake up for the gym, working all day and finding time to shop for groceries and cook can sometimes be a chore.  I really make an effort to ensure I eat clean on a daily basis and to do that it requires additional time and effort especially when I live in a city with so many great restaurants!  By the time I get home I don’t start prepping dinner until 7:30, which can make a very hungry boyfriend start to scavenge if I don’t work fast!  I say this because I am absolutely certain all of you deal with the same types of challenges everyday, which is why I started this blog.  Clean eating can sometimes be a chore, but it’s so worth it for your health, the health of your family and your wallet!

I decided to start with lentils because they are loaded with protein on a vegetarian dinner night and quite filling.  I wanted to use what seasonings and veggies I already had with an exception of a few extra items where I typically like to find inspiration at my local Chelsea market.   As I peruse the produce aisle I notice a bright pop of color coming from the beautiful peppers.  I was drawn to these very fall and festive looking vegetables and decided to pick up bright red and orange peppers and make stuffed peppers.  After grabbing a few more flavor boosters like garlic, onion and paprika its time to head back to my cooking haven to start dinner before the scavenger comes out.

Start by boiling the lentils, for those take by far the longest to prepare!  30-40 minutes is pretty typical to boil and simmer so the prep time can be painful when you are in a crunch.  To save yourself some time, try putting the lentils in the crockpot with the seasonings. You can use the below ingredients and cook them on low all day to get a nice pot of fully prepared lentils upon arrival.

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cup green lentils

3 cups water

2 Cloves fresh garlic

4 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp basil or small handful of fresh chopped basil

1 tsp paprika

1/2 cup chopped red onion

1-2 tsp cracked pepper

1-2 tsp salt

2-3 large peppers in bright colors

1/3 cup goat cheese

Start by preparing your pan with the garlic and olive oil.  Try to crack open your garlic clove and chop into into fine pieces.  Let the olive oil and garlic start to coat the pan to prepare to add the lentils.  Bring the lentils to a good boil and begin adding the remaining ingredients one by one as the lentils are boiling.   After all ingredients have been added and lentils are boiling, bring the lentils to medium and let simmer for 35-40 minutes, while stirring and watching for the water to dissolve into the lentils.  Keep adding water 1/4 cup at a time until lentils are soft.  For a little added creamy texture, try adding almond milk.  It really brings out the flavor and adds a nice creamy consistency(right).

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While lentils are finishing up, prepare the peppers by cutting in half and removing the core and seeds.  Clean them out so there is a nice opening to lay out the lentils evenly.  Place the half’s in at least a 1-2″ deep pan and drizzle some of the above seasoning and/or olive oil. For some added flavor, crumble goat cheese to the bottom of the peppers.  Once the lentils are soft, add them to the peppers and top with goat cheese.

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Place in oven on 350 and heat for approx 10-15 minutes or until peppers are browned at the edges and starting to soften.  Below is a picture of my final product:)

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Gluten Free Sweet Potato Lentil Burgers

After months of hiatus and a crazed schedule I’m back at it!  The time was well spent getting both a SUP yoga and 200 RYT yoga certification, however I’ve missed my favorite hobby of all, cooking!  I love creating new and healthy recipes.  We are all rushed for time and the last thing we have time to do is think of meals, let alone prep them.  I always try to come up with ideas that I can make quickly and save for meals throughout the week.  I decided to start with a meatless dish since that’s what I primarily eat.  I needed something high protein, gluten-free and easy to make and heat up for later meals.  I think I found a winner!  These sweet potato lentil burgers are awesome!  Albeit not extremely dense, they are delicious!  I’ve been eating them on my salads and they give me all the macronutrients I need in my meal.

Ingredients: (makes approx 8 patties)

1 sweet potato (chopped into 1/2 chunks)

1 cup of green dry lentils (should be rinsed)

1/4 cup of chopped onion

2-3 cups of water

1/2 low sodium vegetable bullion cube

1 tsp curry powder

1 tsp Himalayan pink salt

1 tsp pepper

1 chopped garlic clove + 1 tsp of garlic salt or 2 garlic cloves if you like garlic

1 tsp paprika

1 tbsp coconut oil

1/2 cup coconut water (optional)

1/3 cup quinoa flour

2 tbsp saffron oil (high heat oil, however olive or coconut oil works as well)

 

Directions:

Bring lentils to boil with water, bullion and coconut oil and cover and simmer 25-30 min till soft.  Drain and add to bowl.  Bring sweet potatoes to a boil until soft.  Takes approx 10 minutes.  Add sweet potatoes to lentils along with the onion and all spices.  Begin mixing with electric mixer or put into food processor.  Add coconut milk(approx 1/2 cup) until mixture moistens but is still sticking and dense.  Mixture should look something like the picture below.

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To ensure these are dense enough to saute’ in a pan you will want to add flour.  I used gluten-free quinoa flour.  Now you are ready to make patties!  Form into whatever size you want, however this mixture made 8 patties for me which will last a while!  Once you have prepped into patties coat in quinoa flour again to ensure they stay patties when placed into the pan.  Saute’ both sides evenly until browned or blackened if you prefer.  The patties will still be soft but should be fine to place in a cooling spot.  Let them set for at least 5-10 minutes to cool down and harden.

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Now you are ready to enjoy!  I served this with a leafy salad topped with my favorite condiment, lentil humus!

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Enjoy:)