easy recipes

Fast and Easy Ways to Get Delicious Food Into Your Mouth!

Whether you are new to a plant-based life or you have been eating animal free for years, there are days you don’t want to have to think too much about your next meal nor do you want to find some of those tricky ingredients. I have put together some easy and fast tricks that you can use to make your meal prep a breeze.

Something I always do when I am grocery shopping, is to stock up on plant-based items that are on sale. So even if I don’t really need another tin of chickpeas or a bag of frozen kale, if it is on sale, I grab another one. Stocking up on just a few ingredients will make your meal planning much easier. In my pantry I always try and have several tins of beans – black, pinto, chickpeas and kidney; cans of cooked tomatoes and even cans of veggies (some people frown on canned veggies, but for the most part they are pretty good); bags of red and green lentils, rice, couscous; instant oatmeal; mushroom and veggie stock; canned coconut milk; nut butter; seeds and nuts (including flax and hemp seeds); breads and bagels; oils and vinegars; and loads of dried spices and nutritional yeast. I make sure my freezer is filled with frozen veggies and fruits (these are delicious and quite often much less expensive than fresh and obviously last longer); some convenience food like vegan pizza, veggie pot stickers or a mac and cheese. Lastly, I keep pre-made sauces; tofu; pickles; olives; nut milk; vegan butter; and fresh veggies in my fridge.

With a basic stocked pantry/freezer/fridge you can easily put together fast and delicious meals. Let’s start with some quick breakfast ideas.


1)     Nut butter toast with sliced bananas and Chia seeds – Most bread and bagels are vegan but just check before you buy. Slather on your fav nut butter on two pieces of whole grain toast, add a sliced banana and sprinkle with Chia or Hemp seeds.

2)     Instant Oatmeal with apples and spices – Make your instant oatmeal and top with diced apple and your fav spices. I use cinnamon, maple syrup and cardamom. Then sprinkle it with hemp or chia seeds and top with a little nut milk if you like. You can add any type of fruit and even use frozen.

3)     Breakfast smoothie – there is no limit really to what you can add to this fast breaky meal. I always use whatever frozen fruit I have, some frozen kale or spinach, hemp and or chia seeds, cinnamon and nut milk. Sometimes I change it up by adding nut butter or instant espresso powder.


4)     Avocado bagel/toast – Another simple and delicious meal! I mash my avocado with lime juice, salt and pepper and often top it with sliced tomato, bean sprouts or even pickled jalapeno, but you can get creative with whatever you have in your fridge. A trick to keeping your avo’s at the ripeness we like is to put the unripe fruit in the fridge and take one at a time out and set on your counter – after a day or two it will be at the prefect ripeness. Also, if you are looking for a lower carb option, skip the bread and add diced tomatoes, jarred peppers (sweet or hot), some nutritional yeast and chopped cilantro.


5)     Overnight oats – These couldn’t be simpler because you make them the night before and they take only minutes to prepare. The choices here are endless but basically you add about 1/3 cup of instant oats along with the same amount of nut milk, then top with frozen berries, hemp, flax or chia seeds, and any spices you like to any type of container – I use mason jars because they hold the perfect amount and are transportable. Place the container in the fridge overnight and in the morning, they will be ready when you are.

6)     Smoothie bowl – This is completely customizable and is a great way to use up fruits in your fridge or freezer. Basically, this is a smoothie but just thicker and you eat it with a spoon. So just prepare your fav smoothie and don’t add as much liquid. Put it into a bowl, top with more fruit if you like and sprinkle with nuts or seeds.

7)     Breakfast Burrito – these will take a bit more prep time than a smoothie or toast, but the good thing is you can make a bunch up on the weekend and freeze them. Take one out the night before and put in your fridge. The sky is the limit with the fillings and a quick google search will give you hundreds of recipes but essentially, they are filled with either scrambled tofu or egg replacements, some beans, cooked or fresh veggies, some spices and plant-based cheese if you like. In mine, I include scrambled tofu which I add salt, pepper and ground cumin to while cooking; drained black beans, chopped avo and tomato, some salsa and a sprinkle of nutritional yeast to a whole wheat tortilla.

8)     Bacon and eggs – That is tempeh bacon and scrambled tofu. Most grocery stores stock tempeh bacon and it cooks very fast. Putting together a tofu scramble (firm tofu crumbled with your fingers, frozen kale, nutritional yeast, some chili powder, salt and pepper) takes only a couple of minutes, then fry up some tempeh bacon, add sliced tomato and your breakfast is done.

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9)     English muffin breaky sandwich – Once again, the sky is the limit! One that I love includes mashed chickpeas with ground cumin, sliced tomato and avo, vegan cheese and salsa. I put the ingredients on a toasted English muffin and put it in the microwave for a few seconds or under the broiler in the oven. So good and so easy!


10)  Really lazy options – There are tons of prepared plant-based food options in your grocers’ freezers and shelves. Try vegan waffles topped with frozen fruit (heated up on the stove with a touch of water), maple syrup and hemp seeds. A bowl of cereal with sliced banana and chia seeds takes zero effort. Or a big plate of sliced fruit is another simple choice!

Whatever options you choose, eating a plant-based breakfast is much easier than it may seem. It is simple, delicious and animal free - good for you, the planet and the animals!


Some quick and Easy Plant-Based Dinners

I have the luxury of working from home and I live on a farm where I grow all of my own food, but I know that a lot of people don’t live like this. So for anyone who is in a hurry to put dinner on the table for their family or for themselves I have put together some quick and easy recipes.


Easy Pesto Pasta (Makes 4 servings)

- 1 C of basil leaves
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 1/4 C of nuts (I use walnuts)
- 2 Tbsp of olive oil
- a pinch of salt and pepper and a squeeze of lemon juice
- 1 tsp of nutritional yeast (optional)

- 4 servings of whatever type of pasta you like

- Put all of your ingredients (except pasta lol) in a blender or food processor and blend. If it seems to thick, you can add small amounts of water or more olive oil.
- Cook your pasta according to the instructions. Keep 1/2 cup of the cooking liquid. Drain and add the pesto and reserved water to your pasta.

- Add chopped fresh veggies like cherry tomatoes, spinach or roasted peppers.
- Add zucchini “meat” balls (recipe below).

Zucchini “Meat” Balls (Makes 4 servings)

- 1 C of shredded zucchini (squeeze out as much of the liquid as you can)
- 1/2 C of thawed frozen corn
- 1/4 C of finely chopped onion (whatever you have on hand)
- 1/4 C each of flour and corn meal
- 1 Tbsp Nutritional yeast (optional) AND 1 Tbsp of nut milk
- 1/2 tsp each: salt, pepper, ground nutmeg and garlic powder
- about 3 Tbsp olive oil for frying


- Mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl. If the mixture seems to dry add a small amount of nut milk. If it seems to wet add a small amount of corn meal or flour.
- Form the mixture into balls (you can refrigerate at this point to cook later).
- Heat the oil in a large pan over medium high heat.
- Cook and turn the balls until they are golden brown. Remove and place on a paper towel.


Easy Vegetable Pho (Makes about 4 servings)

- 2 large containers (about 6 cups) of Vegan Pho broth**
- 3 cups of any type of frozen vegetables
- 1 cup bean sprouts
- 4 servings of thin rice noodles (about 1/2 package)
- 1/3 cup of each: fresh torn basil, chopped cilantro and fresh mint
- 1 lime cut into quarters
- peanuts, sliced hot peppers and hot sauce (optional)

- Heat up your broth in a large pot over medium high heat.
- Add your rice noodles and cook for 2-3 minutes.
- Add your frozen vegetables and cook for 2-3 minutes.
- Take off the heat and add your sprouts, basil, cilantro and mint.
- Serve and top with lime juice, additional soy sauce, hot sauce, sliced hot peppers and peanuts.

** If you can’t find Pho broth you can use vegetable or mushroom broth. Heat the broth up and add 1/4 cup of chopped onion, 1/4 cup of soy sauce, a couple of slices of ginger, 2-3 pieces of crushed garlic, a piece of star anise, 2-3 whole cloves and a piece or a pinch of cinnamon. Heat up and simmer for about 20 minutes, then strain and use in place of the broth above.

Thanksgiving Plant Based Main Dishes


Cooking a Thanksgiving feast shouldn’t be stressful. Most of the recipes listed here can be partially made up a head of time and then finished right before dinner, leaving you to be with your family and friends.

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Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms (Makes 8 servings)

- 8 large Portobello mushrooms (stems and gills removed)
- 2 pounds of potatoes, chopped
- 1 large package of baby spinach
- 3-4 cloves of garlic, peeled
- 1 C vegan cheese shreds (I used Daiya mozzarella)
- 1 C bread crumbs*
- 3 Tbsp vegan butter
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 tsp each: salt and chopped fresh rosemary
- 1 tsp pepper


- Cook the potatoes and garlic in a medium pot for about 15-20 or until soft. Drain and add salt, pepper, rosemary, butter, and mash until they are the consistency you like. Stir in the spinach.
- While the potatoes are cooking, remove the mushroom stems (you can chop these and add to the potato mixture if you like). Remove the gills with a small spoon. Wash and dry the mushrooms and brush them with oil. Place on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Heat the oven to 375 Fahrenheit and cook the unstuffed mushrooms for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool slightly.
- Using a large spoon overfill each mushroom with the potato mixture. Then top with 1/8 of the cheese and 1/8 of the bread crumbs. (at this point you can cover the tray and wait until you are ready to cook).
- Cook the stuffed mushroom for 15-20 minutes at 375 degrees or until golden brown.

*You can use seasoned croutons and crush them with a rolling pin or put in a food processor.


- You can replace the potato/spinach mixture with about 4-5 cups of uncooked vegan stuffing. Recipe follows:

- 2 Tbsp of olive oil or vegan butter
- 2 of each, chopped: celery stock, carrot and onion
- 1 cup of mushrooms, chopped
- 1 1/2 cup each: cooked rice and dried out bread cut into cubes
- 1 cup of vegetable or mushroom stock
- 2 tsp each: ground sage, thyme, rosemary, salt & pepper

- Heat up oil or butter in a large pan on medium heat, add celery, carrots, onions, mushrooms and spices.
- Cook for about 5-6 minutes.
- Place rice, bread and veggie mixture into a large bowl and add as much stock as you need to make the mixture moist. Taste and add more salt and pepper if needed.
- Put the mixture into a baking dish that has been greased with oil or butter. Cover with foil and cook at 375 for about 30 minutes. 

- The sky is the limit with stuffing, add nuts, dried fruit or other vegetables.

Stuffed Sweet Peppers (Makes 8 servings)

These stuffed pepper are so easy and taste amazing. If you don’t like barley, you can easily replace it with rice, quinoa or any other grain you prefer. Also, changing the veggies to whatever you like or have on hand is perfectly fine. Just make sure you keep the total amounts close to the recipe.

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- 8 medium to large green, yellow or red sweet peppers
- 2 C cooked barley (see package for instructions)
- 1 C each: chopped mushrooms, onions, zucchini and spinach
- 2 Tbsp chopped garlic
- 1 Tbsp each: Thyme, Parley
- 1 tsp each: salt, pepper and chili powder
- 1-2 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 C of tomato or spaghetti sauce
- 1 C of non dairy cheese shreds (optional)


- Rinse the bell peppers. Cut off the tops and carefully remove and remove the seeds and pith. If they wont stand up, cut a small slice off the bottom of the pepper.
- In a large pan, add the oil and heat to medium. Add vegetables, garlic, spices, salt and pepper. Cook for about 5-6 minutes or until soft. (if you are using other veggies that are firm, you may need to increase your cooking time).
- Stir the barley into the vegetables and mix until completely combined.
- Pour 1 C of the tomato sauce in the bottom of a baking dish large enough to hold 8 peppers (or two dishes if you need to).
- Add the barley/veggie mixture to each pepper and place in the baking dish.
- Top the peppers with the remaining tomato sauce and top with cheese shreds if using.
- Bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 30 minutes uncovered.

We don’t all have time to make everything from scratch. Today there are quite a few tasty options available to serve as a main, that will please everyone at your table. Gardein has some great options that come with the stuffing, gravy and cranberries, making your job easier. 

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Almost anything you can think of is now available in a plant based recipe and at your local supermarket. Remember, if you don’t see what you are looking for, ask for it. The more we demand these products, the more our grocery stores will stock them.

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