Tag Archives: Vegan

Double Chocolate Flourless Super Food Brownies

Double Chocolate and Almond Flourless Brownies

Double Chocolate and Almond Flourless Brownies

A flourless, chocolaty, rich, moist and fudgy treat.  But, this is no ordinary brownie, what I have for you here is a big dose of super foods disguised as a delicious decadent treat.  Avocado, almond and cocoa give you antioxidants, fiber and healthy fats, serving up a treat you can feel great eating.  I promise, you will not taste or even see the avocado at all, but it adds moistness and yes, fat, while replacing more traditional and less healthful fats.   Double Chocolate Flourless Brownies

I adapted this recipe from Elana’s Pantry Paleo Brownies, mine are no longer fully paleo as I’ve replaced Elana’s dates with brown sugar, which may actually be better for those following a low FODMAPs diet who have difficulty digesting certain fruits.  I also like that brown sugar is something most of us always have on hand, which makes this a recipe you can throw together easily without much planning, as long as almond flour is one of your pantry items and a ripe avocado is on hand! And speaking of avocado, I’ve swapped that for Elana’s coconut oil, which gives you a healthful fat plus some added fiber. 

Double Chocolate Flourless Superfood Brownies topped with raspberry sorbet

mashed avocado for double chocolate flourless brownies

mashed avocado

Since this recipe was already, gluten free and dairy free, I decided to give it a test drive going completely vegan by swapping out the eggs for flax.  I give you the recipe both ways, so if you have no issue with eggs and like the idea of getting a little extra protein and vitamin D, go with the eggs, otherwise, swap out the eggs for flax and get yourself a little extra Omega 3’s with your chocolaty treat. 

flax eggs

flax “eggs”

eggs, avocado and vanilla

eggs, avocado and vanilla

I’m no stranger to subbing flax for eggs in recipes, but until now I have never made the same recipe side by side, one with eggs and one with flax, and I have to say the results were interesting and a little surprising to me.  The egg version batter mixes up moister and bakes up with a little more rise, while the flax version actually bakes up a little bit moister, even though the batter looks drier before baking.  Either way, both versions are a treat I wouldn’t turn down and I will say there were no complaints from my family of tasters when two pans of brownies came out of the oven!

Side by Side flax eggs and avocado vs. real eggs and avocado

Side by Side
flax eggs and avocado vs.
real eggs and avocado

Since I did end up with two batches, I found they stayed perfectly moist and yummy for several days, just wrapped on the counter.  Although, I didn’t try freezing these, I think they would do well individually wrapped if you’d like to stash a few for a future treat. 

Double Chocolate Flourless SuperFood Brownies

Double Chocolate Flourless Super Food Brownies

Author: Sweet Green Kitchen’s Jen Jones

Adapted from Elana’s Pantry Paleo Brownies

Makes 16 Brownies

IngredientsDouble Chocolate Flourless Superfood Brownies

1 cup Almond Flour

½ cup Cocoa Powder (I use raw organic Cacao)

½ cup Brown Sugar

1 teaspoon Instant Espresso Powder

1 teaspoon Baking Soda

¼ teaspoon Salt – I use a heaping amount of Flaky Sea Salt

2 Eggs – I use Extra Large OR 2 Tablespoons Ground Flax + 5 Tablespoons warm Water

½ Avocado – well mashed

2 teaspoons Pure Vanilla Extract

½ cup Dark Chocolate Chips or Chunks – Bittersweet or Semi Sweet

Optional: extra Flaky Sea Salt for sprinkling on top

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 F.  Grease an 8 x 8 inch baking dish (I use coconut oil for greasing) OR line with parchment.

IF using Flax instead of Eggs, mix together the Flax with the Water in a small bowl and set aside to thicken up.

In a medium bowl, sift in the Almond Flour.  Note: As long as most of the Almond Flour gets through the sifter, it’s fine to dump the remaining bits that stubbornly won’t go through the mesh, right into the bowl.  Sift in the Cocoa Powder.  Next add in the Salt, Baking Soda and Brown Sugar.  Mix well, being sure to break up any of the Brown Sugar clumps.  Stir in the Chocolate chunks or chips.

In a separate bowl, mash the Avocado until it’s really smooth and creamy.  Add to that the Eggs or gelled Flax and the Vanilla Extract.  Mix well.

Add the Avocado mixture to the Almond and Cocoa mix.  Stir to fully combine.

Pour the batter into your prepared baking pan and smooth out so it fits evenly in the pan.

Bake at 350 F for 18-22 minutes.  Now the hard part: best to let the brownies cool right in the baking pan for about 2 hours before slicing through.  Cut into 16 squares. Enjoy!

 

Recipe notes: 

partially sifted almond flour

partially sifted almond flour

 

I keep my almond flour in the freezer which tends to make it a little lumpy.  So I don’t end up with a brownie filled with unmixed lumps of almond meal, I like to sift it into the bowl. It’s definitely worth the effort even though I never seem to be able to get it completely through the mesh of the sifter, so I just toss in whatever remains behind, which adds a nice bit of nutty texture to the finished brownie.   

 

 

Double Chocolate Almond Flourless Super Food Brownies

Double Chocolate & Almond Flourless Superfood Brownies, yum!

 

Wheat Berries and Sprouts Salad with Grapes & Almonds

Wheatberries and Sprouts Salad with Red Grapes and Almonds

Wheat berries are dense and chewy with a slightly nutty flavor, packed with protein and fiber and a decent amount of iron, they make for a filling and healthy base to this delicious salad. Raw Brussels Sprouts have a mild flavor, so different than cooked sprouts, if you’ve never had them this way I think you will be pleasantly surprised. I also love how the grapes along wth the fruity vinegars add some brightness to both the taste and look of this salad. The almonds, aside from being super healthy; protein, fiber and vitamin packed, add a really nice crunch. This salad is so filled with flavors, texture and nutrition, I hope you love it as much as I do!     

Wheat berries ready to  cook

Wheat berries ready to cook

Wheat berries and sprouts salad

Wheat Berries and Sprouts Salad

With Grapes & Almonds

Author: Sweet Green Kitchen’s Jen Jones

 

Ingredients:

Salad:

1/2 cup uncooked wheat berries – rinsed and cooked in about 1 ½ cups water for about an hour

1 container or large handful of Brussels Sprouts – outer leaves & stem ends removed, sliced very thinly

1 – ½ small red onion (about ¼ – ½ cup) – slivered or diced

A handful of red grapes – halved

A small handful of parsley – chopped

3-4 Tablespoons slivered almonds

 

Dressing:

2 Tablespoons Olive Oil

2 Tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar

2 Tablespoons Blackberry Balsamic Vinegar or similar

A few shakes of dried Rosemary – about ¼ – ½ teaspoon

Sea Salt to taste

 

Optional add ins: crumbled bleu cheese or goat cheese

Directions:

Stir together the dressing either in a small bowl or right in the bottom of your serving bowl.

Add to the serving bowl cooked and cooled wheat berries, dressing and remaining salad ingredients. Stir well to combine.

Optional, crumble in cheese of your choice.

Serve as a side salad or atop a pile of greens, romaine or baby spinach are nice as a yummy and filling vegetarian entrée. Enjoy! wheat berries and sprouts salad with bleu cheese and cheesy bread

Wheat Berries & Sprouts Salad with Grapes & Almonds topped with Bleu Cheese

Wheat Berries & Sprouts Salad with Grapes & Almonds topped with Bleu Cheese

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Perfect Peanut Butter Cookies with/or/without jam or chocolate

Perfect Peanut Butter Cookie

No butter, no eggs, no guilt, but sinfully delicious! This is Skyler’s all time favorite cookie.  Peanut butter and maple syrup make these soft and tender cookies melt in your mouth, perfection.

Perfect Peanut Butter with Chocolate and Jam Cookies

I adapted this recipe from Dreena Burton’s “Vive le Vegan and after years of making Skyler’s Favorite Peanut Butter Cookies, along came 9 years younger brother Evan, who thinks everything in life is better with jelly, including big sister’s favorite cookie recipe! So, as soon as he was old enough to know what was going on, he decided to up the ante and request/demand that his favorite condiment, raspberry jam, be added to the mix and lo and behold the Perfect PB & J Cookie was born. And…since we were already messing with Skyler’s perfect cookie world, why not mess just a little bit more and add in everybody’s favorite cookie condiment…chocolate! Really I don’t know what took me so long to put two and two and another two and two together, maybe it was the fact that Skyler loved the original version so much we were afraid to mess with success, “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it”.  But now, even though the original is still a favorite, we never make peanut butter cookies without adding a little jam and a few chocolate chips to at least a few. PB PBJ and PB Chocolate Cookies

With or without the jelly or chocolate, these cookies are a family favorite and devoured by friends as well. A perfect after school snack for the kids and me! They are soft and a little bit crumbly, perfect for anyone who avoids eggs and dairy and delicious for all.

 Peanut Butter Cookies and PBJ and PB Chocolate

Perfect Peanut Butter OR PB & J OR PB with Chocolate Center Cookies

Author: Sweet Green Kitchen’s Jen Jones

Adapted from Dreena Burton’s “Vive le Vegan

 

Makes about 24-26 cookies

Ingredients:

¾ cup All Purpose Unbleached Flour

¾ cup Whole Wheat Pastry Flour

1 ½ teaspoon Baking Powder

¾ teaspoon Baking Soda

3 Tablespoon Granulated Sugar (I use organic evaporated cane sugar)

½ teaspoon Sea Salt

½ cup + 2 Tablespoon Natural Unsweetend Peanut Butter (do not substitute)

¾ cup Pure Maple Syrup (the good stuff, no Aunt Jemima or the like)

½ teaspoon Molasses

1 ½ teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract

4 ½ Tablespoon Canola Oil (or other oil of your choice)

Optional Additions:

Raspberry Jam – (Strawberry, Apricot, Blackberry, etc, whatever your family prefers)

About ¼ cup Chocolate Chips – I use 60% Cocoa Chips

Directions:

 Preheat oven to 350 F.

 In a medium bowl, add in all dry ingredients and whisk until evenly combined.

 In a liquid measure, pour in the maple syrup, molasses, vanilla extract and oil. Then add in ½ cup of the peanut butter.  Stir thoroughly to combine.

 Add the wet mixture to the dry and stir well. Next add in the remaining 2 Tablespoon of peanut butter, but do not mix completely.  You want ribbons of peanut butter throughout.

Use 2 ungreased cookie sheets. Measure out rounded tablespoons of batter onto the cookie sheet, 12-13 per sheet.  Do not flatten the doughuncooked peanut butter cookie dough

If adding Jam – Using a finger or the back end of a butter knife, make small depressions into the center of each peanut butter dough ball. Add about ¼ teaspoon of Jam into the center well of each cookie.PB cookie dough with center depression

 PB cookie dough with jamPB cookie dough with chocolate

If adding Chocolate – Using a finger or the back end of a butter knife, make small depressions into the center of each peanut butter dough ball. Add about 3-5 chocolate chips into the center well of each cookie.  Note, that the chocolate chips will soften while baking but not completely melt together.  Once baked, while the cookies are cooling, if you like, swirl together the softened chocolate chips in each cookie’s center, using the tip of a butter knife or spoon, until you have one blob of chocolate, instead of separate chips or leave as is if you prefer, great either way.

 Bake for 10-11 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool a few minutes on the cookie sheet.  They will fall apart if moved too soon.  After they have cooled slightly, move the cookies with a spatula to a cooling rack and Enjoy!

Peanut Butter and Chocolate Cookie

Recipe Notes: This recipe is Vegan, use Vegan chocolate chips to keep it that way or non Vegan if it’s not necessary for you. Full disclosure, I don’t use Vegan chocolate, my favorite for these and most other recipes involving chocolate, is Ghiradelli 60% Cocoa chips, they are a little bigger than your average chocolate chip and perfectly bittersweet.

A note about the peanut butter, I only use all natural peanut butter with no added sugar or any other ingredients but salt. Sometimes, I’ll make my own at the health food store which works perfectly here as well.

for printable version click here

Tofu Summer Rolls with Miso Dipping Sauce

IMG_5004 Tofu Summer Rolls with Misco Cashew Dipping Sauce

Tofu Summer Rolls

Author: Sweet Green Kitchen’s Jen Jones

These summer rolls are so flavorful, light and fresh tasting, perfect for the warm days of Spring and Summer.  They make a great appetizer or party hors d’oeuvres and are perfect as a light lunch or dinner served alongside a nice salad or Asian slaw.

Ingredients:

1 12-ounce package of Extra Firm Tofu – drained and pressed

1 Avocado – thinly sliced

1 Mango – thinly sliced

Fresh Mint leaves

Baby Arugula

Rice Paper a.k.a. Spring Roll Wrappers

Flaked Sea Salt (or other Salt)IMG_4955

IMG_4958

Miso Marinade/Dipping Sauce Ingredients:

 1 Tablespoon White Miso

1 Tablespoon lite Soy Sauce or Wheat Free Tamari (to make it gluten free)

2 Tablespoons Apple Cider or Rice Vinegar (or 1 Tablespoon of each)

2 teaspoons Honey, Agave or Maple Syrup (Agave or Maple to make it Vegan)

1/4 teaspoon (more or less to taste) Sriracha Sauce

1 Tablespoon Olive or Sesame Oil

IMG_4949 Miso Cashew Dipping Sauce

 Alternate (Miso Cashew) Dipping Sauce Ingredients:

1 Tablespoon Cashew Butter (Almond or Peanut Butter would also be good)

1 Tablespoon White Miso

1 Tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar

2 teaspoons Honey or Agave Syrup

1 teaspoon lite Soy Sauce or Tamari

1 teaspoon Water

1/4 teaspoon (more or less to taste) Sriracha Sauce

A sprinkling of white or black Sesame Seeds – optional

 

Directions:

Starting with drained and pressed Tofu, slice the Tofu block into approximately 8 even slices and the then halve each slice lengthwise, leaving you with about 16 strips.  Season lightly with salt.

Meanwhile heat a large non stick pan and drizzle a bit of oil (I use olive, canola or coconut oil).

Saute each piece of Tofu over a medium to high flame, adjusting temperature as needed, until golden brown on both sides.  Beware of splatters when cooking.

IMG_4715 Golden Tofu in Miso MarinadeWhilst cooking the tofu, prepare the Miso Marinade.  Add the cooked Tofu to the Marinade and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to a few hours or even overnight.  Refrigerating the cooked tofu allows the texture to firm up and also gives it time to absorb the flavors of the marinade.

To make the Summer Rolls:

Fill a pie dish or other similarly sized bowl with warm water.  Working one at a time, soak 1 Rice Paper wrapper in the water until it softens.  Beware, if you’ve never worked with rice paper wrappers before, they are delicate and prone to tearing, but don’t worry about small tears they should still wrap up fine.

On a flat surface, like a cutting board lay out the softened Rice Paper (you can place a paper towel on top of your board if you like to help absorb a bit of extra moisture and prevent it from sticking to your board).

Begin to layer your filling – start with 2 -3 leaves of Mint placed vertically down the center of the rice paper.  Next, line up 2 slices of tofu on top of the Mint, then 2 slices of Mango and 2 slices of Avocado, finishing with a small handful of Arugula and a little sprinkle of flaked Sea Salt.IMG_4970 IMG_4993IMG_4988

IMG_4981Now to wrap, if you’ve ever rolled up a burrito this is very much the same.  Start by folding up the ends over the filling, then , fold up one side over all the filling tucking it to make it tight, then roll the whole thing over the last end until it is completely wrapped, tucking as you go to make a nice tight roll.  Using a sharp knife cut the roll in half (I like an angled cut).  Now repeat.

Place the completed rolls on a platter until done and then serve with either the leftover marinade or the miso cashew dipping sauce.  Enjoy!

Recipe Notes:  These rolls take a little pre planning as you need to first cook and marinate the tofu before moving on to make the rolls, if you want to save time, you can use already baked and marinated pre-packaged tofu. 

Click here to view printable version

IMG_5012 IMG_4996

 

 

 

 

 

Lemony Tabbouleh

Lemony Tabbouleh

Author: Sweet Green Kitchen’s Jen Jones

vegan

IMG_4487

To so many, parsley is thought of as just a garnish, but not I.  To me, parsley is an ingredient to be celebrated as much as other favorite herbs like basil or salad greens such as arugula, field greens and others.  It shows up regularly, pretty much daily in my meals, sprinkled atop sliced eggs on toast or over pasta or mixed into any number of recipes, it adds a freshness like no other to just about any savory dish.  But here, parsley becomes the star, no longer a mere garnish, parsley is the main ingredient in this simple lovely salad.  This truly is traditionally a parsley salad with bulgur, mint and tomatoes playing the supporting roles.  I like my tabbouleh with extra lemon, so feel free to add less if that’s not to your liking.  Either way, this is a quick, simple, yet wonderfully delicious dish that itself could be the star of the meal. 

Ingredients:IMG_4451

2/3 cup fine Bulgur wheat (medium or coarse grain can be substituted) *see notes – or Quinoa for a gluten free option

Zest of 1 Lemon

About 4 Tablespoons fresh Lemon Juice, from about 1- 2 lemons (less if you prefer)

About 4 -6 Tablespoons Olive Oil

1 large bunch (about 3-4 cups) Flat Leaf Italian Parsley (so much more flavorful than curly parsley)

1 small bunch Mint (about ½ – 1 cup)

About ½ – 1 whole pint of small Tomatoes, such as grape or cherry

Optional: 2-3 chopped Scallions

Sea Salt and Black Pepper to taste

 

IMG_4456

Directions:

Rinse bulgur in a tight mesh strainer under cold water and then drain thoroughly.  Pour into a medium bowl.  *See notes below if you wish to use Quinoa. Zest your lemon (before juicing).  Add lemon juice and olive oil to the bulgur, add less to start with as you can always add more lemon juice after tasting, but you can’t take it out.  Allow to sit for a few minutes to absorb the dressing.  If using medium or coarse grain bulgur, you’ll need to add a little hot water to soften the grain, before adding the dressing.

Meanwhile, wash and dry parsley and mint leaves and chop.  Add to the bulgur along with the lemon zest, salt and pepper and scallions if using.  Stir to combine.

Cut the tomatoes in half or quarters, depending upon the size and what you like.  Add the tomatoes to the salad and gently stir.

Taste, adding more lemon juice or salt and pepper as you like.

Can be served chilled or at room temperature.  Enjoy! IMG_4476IMG_4482

Recipe Notes:  

It’s best to let the salad sit for a bit of time before eating to allow the grain to soften and fully absorb all the flavors of the dressing, herbs and tomatoes.  If I have time and actually think ahead, I mix the bulgur with the olive oil and lemon juice and leave in the fridge overnight, before adding the remaining ingredients, but this is not necessary.

 Tabbouleh can be served in so many wonderful ways.  I like it simply in Romaine lettuce cups or added to a hummus wrap or falafel sandwich or atop a larger green salad or served alongside your favorite fish. It was also my contribution to the family Easter brunch, served along side my dad’s amazing quiche and goat cheese tart.  

Ingredient Notes: 

Parsley has numerous health benefits.  It is an excellent source of Vitamins K (one half cup serving provides over 500% of your daily value!) and C and also a very good source of Vitamin A, folic acid and iron. It is high in numerous healthy flavonoids.  All of which means parsley is good for your heart, joints, digestion and more.   

Bulgur wheat also goes by the name cracked wheat, it is high in protein and fiber and low in fat and calories, an excellent substitution for other grains such as brown rice or oats. 

*BUT, if you can’t find bulgur or wish to make this wheat/gluten free, I find Quinoa makes a perfect substitute for the bulgur.  If you do use Quinoa, you’ll have to pre cook it, I would probably use about 1/3 cup uncooked to 2/3 cup water, brought to a boil and then covered on a low simmer for 15-20 minutes.  Quinoa increases in volume by a lot, so don’t be concerned by the small amount at the start.   

Click here for Printable Version

 

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