Roasted Veggies
For this recipe, you can use any combination of veggies.  I have had great success with zucchini, squash, asparagus, onions, tomatoes, carrots, broccoli, etc.  You can also alter the seasoning for some variety, but this is one of my favorite ways to cook vegetables, and it's so simple and quick.  I'm not including exact amounts - it's best to just season to taste.

Extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt
coarse ground black pepper
Herbs de Provence

Preheat oven to 435.  Line a baking sheet with foil for easier cleanup.  Spread vegetables in a single layer on the foil.  Drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle desired amounts of garlic, herbs, salt and pepper and toss to make sure veg has olive oil and seasoning throughout.  Bake until desired tenderness.  
Another tip:  Roasted vegetables (especially tomatoes, onions, zucchini, asparagus) are great served with pasta (Hodgson Mill whole wheat spaghetti or noodles of choice - check the label carefully) or couscous.  Just toss with a little olive oil, and squeeze in the juice of a lemon or lime and sprinkle with the zest.  Reserve some of the pasta water in case the pasta seems a little dry. A can of fire roasted tomatoes is also good in this. If you can have dairy, a hand full of Parmesan cheese tossed in at the last minute is a good addition. This is an easy and complete dinner.  Serve hot or cold.

Couscous Salad
1 box PLAIN couscous (I use Near East brand)
1 can chickpeas, drained
1 cucumber, peeled and chopped
1 pint cherry/grape tomatoes, halved
1 jar roasted red peppers, chopped - reserve liquid
1 lime and zest
garlic power
salt and pepper
Extra virgin olive oil

Prepare couscous according to package instructions.  For extra flavor, use allergy-friendly chicken or vegetable stock instead of water if you have some on hand.  Place chickpeas in a medium bowl.  Sprinkle with garlic powder, salt, and pepper to taste.  Place the prepared couscous in the bowl and toss.  Add the cucumber, tomatoes, and red peppers.  Add lime juice and zest, salt, and pepper to taste.  Pour some of the reserved liquid from the roasted red peppers into the mix and toss with a little olive oil.  
You can use almost any combination of veggies for this salad.  It is also good with roasted veggies (see recipe above).

Sweet Potato Fries
2 small/medium sweet potatoes or 1 large potato (peel if desired. I like the skin on)
extra virgin olive oil
smoked paprika
garlic powder
kosher salt
Preheat oven to 450. Cut sweet potatoes into "fries" - about 1/4"x 1/4" strips. Place cut potatoes into a glass 8x8 or flat bottomed bowl. cover will olive oil (about 1/4 cup...just enough to coat). Season with black pepper, salt, garlic powder and paprika. I go pretty heavy on the seasoning! Make sure all sides are coated.
Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. No cooking spray is needed unless you go very light on the olive oil.  (Note:  most cooking sprays contain soy, so if you can't have soy, it's best to avoid cooking spray!)  Place fries on the sheet, making sure to spread them out evenly. Bake for 8 minutes. Remove from oven, flip fries and place back in the oven for an additional 4 minutes. Fries should be golden brown.
Remove from oven and allow them to cool for 3-4 minutes before serving.

Tip: Try a variety of seasonings depending on your main course! Here are some other combos I like:
  • Lemon pepper seasoning and Italian spice blend
  • Sugar, salt and pumpkin pie spice
  • Salt, Pepper and light brown sugar
  • Salt, paprika, cinnamon

Note: Sweet potatoes are a great source of vitamin A and C and is also considered an antidiabetic food, which means that it can stabilize blood sugar and lower insulin resistance.

Sneaky Smashed Potatoes-yum!!

about 2 cups of chopped Cauliflower (rough chop is fine for all veggies)
2 medium Irish potatoes chopped-skin on!
1 Large carrot-peeled and chopped
Rice milk ( you may also use cream or reg. milk)
Earth Balance butter spread (i use the soy free/dairy free)
garlic powder
Chicken Stock (optional)

Bring water (or 1/2 water 1/2 stock) to boil in a large pot. Salt water. Add all veggies and boil until tender (about 15 minutes). Drain. Dump all veggies in a large bowl and add about a 1/4 cup of rice milk and a tablespoon or two of the butter spread. Season with desired amount of salt, pepper and garlic. With a mixer, beat on low for a few seconds. test seasoning and consistancy. I usually add a little more milk to make my smash creamier, but I will let you be the judge!

This is a great way to still get your comfort food mashed potatoes with a healthy kick that no one will suspect! I love these!

(Before they were mashed)



Balsamic Reduction
1 cup balsamic vinegar
1 clove garlic, crushed

Place the vinegar and garlic in a small, heavy saucepan.  Bring to a boil over medium-high heat.  After it comes to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cook uncovered, stirring occasionally until it reduces to about 1/4 cup.  It should be thick enough to coat a spoon and will thicken further upon cooling.  
This is a great way to add some variety to veggies, chicken, salmon, etc.  

Ranch Dressing (gf/EGG FREE!/dairy free/soy free/vegan)
3tsp Penzeys Spices Buttermilk Dressing and Dip mix (buy here)
1/3 cup Rice Milk
1 cup Earth Balance soy free Mayo or Vegenaise

Whisk all ingredients in a medium bowl and enjoy! I like my ranch a bit thick, but you can always add more rice milk to thin it out.
I cannot say enough great things about this dressing!! I LOVE ranch dressing, and I have really missed it going dairy/egg/soy free. I searched and searched for a way to make my own and to actually make it taste amazing. Well, I found it! Penzeys has so many great products (seasonings and spices), and I am addicted to this rach mix. its ingredients are: salt, bell peppers, garlic, onion, sugar, black pepper, parsley, thyme and basil..THATS IT!

Easy Guacamole
(soy/dairy/nut/egg/gluten free)
1 Haas Avocado
about 1/4 tsp salt
about 1/8 tsp garlic powder
1 Tablespoon organic Salsa- mild or hot
about 1/4-1/2 tsp finely chopped cilantro (can be omitted)

Simply open Avocado, spoon out filling into a small bowl, and add the rest of the ingredients. Smash with a fork until smooth. That's it!!