Hearty “Hamburger” Macaroni and Cheese

Hearty “Hamburger” Macaroni and Cheese

Hearty “Hamburger” Macaroni and Cheese

There is something about macaroni and cheese that we all can relate to. Whether it’s the creamy cheese sauce or the crispy top baked with breadcrumbs and more cheese, we all have our go-to version. My plant-based “hamburger helper” recreation uses sunflower haché by Sunflower Family. This type of protein is made from dehydrated sunflower kernels. If you haven’t already decided what you’re making this week, I highly suggest this!

Hearty “Hamburger” Macaroni and Cheese

Yields 5-6 servings

Ingredients

1 (16 oz.) organic Conchiglie pasta, cooked

“Beef” Mix:

1 box Sunflower haché

1 medium onion, diced

1 garlic clove, minced

1 Tbsp. avocado oil

1 cup water

1/2 tsp. Vitacost Himalayan Fine Pink Salt

1/4 tsp. ground black pepper

fresh parsley, to garnish

Cheese Sauce:

2 cups potatoes

1 cup carrots, chopped

1/2 cup filtered water

1/3 cup avocado oil

1 Tbsp. lemon juice

1/2 cup nutritional yeast

2 tsp. Vitacost Himalayan Fine Pink Salt

1/4 tsp. onion powder

1/4 tsp. garlic powder

pinch of smoked paprika

Directions

  1. Combine all cheese ingredients and blend until smooth. Serve either hot or cold
  2. In a sauce pan, add avocado oil and onion; sauté for 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for additional 1 minute.
  3. Add the haché and the water; allow to cook for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Cook pasta according to the packaged directions. Once done, drain and add to a bowl.
  5. Combine cheese sauce, “beef” mix, and pasta. Garnish with chopped green onions.
  6. Serve immedietly.

 

 Chef’s tip: if you don’t have and haché, feel free to use another mock “meat” alternative: mushroom, lentils and walnuts, or your own personal favorite choice.

Roasted “Tomato” Sauce

Roasted "Tomato" Sauce

With more people unable to eat acidic foods, I wanted to create this “tomato” sauce that everyone could enjoy on their pizza! This sauce uses red peppers and mushrooms which gives an almost tomato sauce flavor. Whether you are gluten-free or not, you can enjoy this sauce on a cauliflower pizza crust or a regular crust made from dough. Whichever you chose, you will be impressed.

Roasted "Tomato" Sauce

Yields 1-1/2 cups

Ingredients

2 medium red peppers

4-5 medium baby bella mushrooms

1 medium red onion, halved

2 Tbsp. fresh parsley

2-3 cloves of garlic

Pinch of Vitacost Himalayan Fine Pink Salt

Pinch of Spicely Organics ground black pepper

Directions 

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. On a baking sheet, place peppers on and place into the oven. Roast for 25-30 minutes. Once peppers are soft, turn them on their sides and turn oven to broil. Place peppers on top rack and allow to “burn” until the skin is black.  Remove and set aside to cool.
  3. Remove skins once peppers have cooled down. 
  4. In a blender, add your red pepper, mushrooms, onion, parsley, and garlic. Blend until mixture is well combined. Pour on to favorite pizza crust, or pasta dish.

Chef’s tip: This sauce is great for those who would like to enjoy pizza but can not have tomato sauce or vinegar.

Tomatillo Sauce

Tomatillo Sauce

This quick and easy sauce is a must have in the fridge! All you need is a blender and some fresh plant-based ingredients to create this flavorful sauce to top any enchilada, taco, arepa, or whatever you choose. The next time you are at the store and you spot those green tomatoes with an outer husk (and you are questioning what they are) don’t be afraid to grab some and make this. You will be delightfully surprised at how delicious this is!

Tomatillo Sauce

Yields 2 cups

Ingredients

1/2 cup vegetable broth

10 tomatillo, husk removed

Half of a medium red pepper

Half of a medium orange pepper

1 cup oyster mushrooms

1/2 tsp. cumin 

1 clove of garlic

1/4 cup fresh parsley

1 Tbsp. siracha 

Pinch of Vitacost Himalayan Pink Salt

Pinch of Spicely Organics Black Ground Pepper

Directions

  1. In a medium sauce pan, combine all above ingredients and turn to medium-high heat. Once liquid has come to a rolling boil, turn to medium-low heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes, or until tomatillos are tender.
  2. In a Vitamix blender, pour the hot mixture carefully into the blender and blend for 1 minute or until mixture is smooth.
  3. Pour sauce into a mason jar and serve or allow to cool and store in the refrigerator.

Chef’s tip: To spice this sauce up from a mild/medium heat profile, add half of a jalapeño pepper to the blender (seeds will make it more hot).

Authentic Italian Tomato Sauce

Before I realized how easy it is to make my own mouthwatering pasta sauce, I opted for store-bought varieties. The downside to pre-made sauces is that they’re often tainted with preservatives to maintain longer shelf lives—no thanks! Now, I use homegrown tomatoes from my garden (or local farm when necessary!). With organic, fresh and local ingredients, it’s easier than ever to sneak in some added nutrients (think fresh herbs such as thyme and basil!). Italian lover? This sauce is the perfect addition to pizza, lasagna and beyond!

Ingredients

10 medium tomatoes, cut into quarters 

3 cloves of garlic, smashed 

1 small white onion, chopped roughly

1 Tbsp. Simply Organic Oregano

1/4 cup  fresh basil leaves 

1 1/2 tsp. Simply Organic Thyme Leaf

1 tsp. Vitacost Himalayan Pink salt

1 tsp Spicely Organics Black Peppercorns Tin

3 quarts water

 

Directions 

  1. In medium saucepan, heat tomatoes, garlic and onion. Fill with water 2-in. below brim of pot.
  2. Add oregano, basil, thyme, salt and pepper. Bring to boil on high heat. Boil for 10 minutes until tomatoes and onions soften.
  3. With hand immersion or blender, combine until everything is broken up. Pour back into pot and bring back to a boil.
  4. After boiling, reduce to simmer for 3 hours. Once time has elapsed and you’ve reached desired thickness, remove from heat and let cool. Serve immediately or can sauce for longer shelf life.

 

Chef’s tip: Great for Pizza, Spaghetti, and lasagna! Fresh and homemade is a much better choice than store bought.

Raw Creamy Cucumber Dressing

Let’s be honest- we all know it can be difficult sometimes to get our vegetables in. A few vegetables at diner each evening for our entire life just isn’t enough some times. The beneficial thing about plant-based foods is majority of the time you can use vegetables in their raw nature to produce an amazing product. In this case, a dressing filled with great nourishing vitamins and hydrating properties that will leave your appetite quenched. With this easy recipe, you can take locally bought produce and make an oil free dressing. Bringing to you and your family an explosion in your mouth of fresh cucumber with a hint of lemon and a slight creamy texture from the avocado. 

Yields 4 cups 

Ingredients 

1 medium cucumber

1 large lemon, squeezed

I large avocado 

3 stalks celery

1 tsp Vitacost Himalayan Pink Salt- Fine 

1 tsp Spicely Organics Black Peppercorns Tin 

2 cloves garlic 

 

 Directions

  1. In blender, combine all ingredients until mixture is thick and creamy. Pour into desired container and allow to chill for 1 hour minimum.
  2. Dressing will last refrigerated for 7 days in an air-tight mason jar or bottle.

 

Chef’s tip: For added freshness, add 1 Tbsp. fresh dill.