Category Archives: Snacks

Veggie Nacho Cheese Sauce

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Veggie Nacho Cheese Sauce

I’ve had a decent amount of vegan versions of cheese sauce. One of my favorite made from scratch cheese sauces I discovered on VegNews. It’s used for Vegan Macaroni & Cheese it’s so good! I took many of the things I liked about that one and applied it to mine. I changed this to be more of a nacho cheese sauce and made it not so calorie heavy, no added oil and far less fat.
This was fabulous for nachos and I love it over cooked or steamed broccoli & cauliflower. Sometimes I bake cauliflower and then use this as a dip for it, same goes with potatoes! You wouldn’t necessarily think that a sauce that has potatoes in it would be good with potatoes, but it doesn’t taste like potatoes, I promise.

I would call this potato cheese sauce, or potato cauliflower cheese sauce, but there are enough other veggies in it that I feel like that’s not really a fair name. So, veggie nacho cheese sauce it is!! ENJOY!!!

Veggie Nacho Cheese Sauce

  • 2 red or yellow potatoes, chopped
  • 1/4 onion
  • 3 small carrots, chopped
  • 1 cup fresh/raw cauliflower, broken into medium pieces
  • 1/2 red bell pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 2 tbs salsa
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 tbs dijon mustard
  • 1 tbs hot sauce
  • 1/8 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/4 cup raw cashews
  • 1/2 c cooking water

Instructions

In a small pot, bring about 2 cups of water to a boil, then add in first 4 ingredients. If the water doesn’t cover all the vegetables, add some more. Boil until potatoes are tender (poke with a fork) and cooked throughout. Remove from heat and allow to cool for about 5 min.

While boiled veggies are cooling down, load up the blender jar with the rest of the ingredients up to the 1/2 c cooking water. Now you can dump your boiled veggies into a strainer/colander and save some of the liquid OR use a fork and transfer veggies out of the pot into the blender jar and measure out 1/2 cup of the left over boil water and pour it into the blender.

Blend on high for 1 min (longer if you don’t have a high powered blender) so it’s nice and creamy and smooth! It’ll still be nice and hot from the hot vegetables and hot water, perfecto for nachos!!

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Homemade (from mostly veggies) vegan nacho cheese from scratch, no oil and not full of nuts!

ready to be blended

Homemade (from mostly veggies) vegan nacho cheese from scratch, no oil and not full of nuts!

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p.s. I topped my nachos with chopped tomatoes, chopped red bell pepper, salsa and green onions. I bet it would be good with some beans and avocado too! Maybe guac, maybe some cooked up Beyond Meat Crumbles!?  Oh the possibilities of nachos! Wow I’m hungry now!

 

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Oatmeal Cookie Healthy Banana Ice Cream

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I adore ice cream and all things that behave similar to ice cream. So, frozen bananas blended with other stuff that end up seeming like ice cream, count me in.  This is an easy blender recipe with not many ingredients, keep things simple.

After it was all blended, I put it back in the freezer for 30 min to harden a bit more

ready to eat

now REALLY ready to eat! Topped with cacao nibs and mulberries

  • 2 frozen bananas, in chunks
  • 1/4 cup (or less) rolled oats (I did less)
  • 1/2 cup ice cubes
  • 1/4 cup nondairy milk of choice
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup (or less) nondairy chocolate chips
  • optional 10-15 drops of vanilla stevia

 

Toss everything except the chocolate chips in the blender and blend. I used a Blendtec Twister Jar and the ice cream setting on the blender, worked out perfect. If you don’t have that, any other high powered blender will work, you just may have to turn off the blender to scrape down the sides then turn it back on again couple of times. Blend until smooth, put the chocolate chips in and blend for about 5 seconds.

I put mine in the freezer after I made it, to harden up a little bit while I was cleaning up my mess and such. I topped it with cacao nibs and dried mulberries too!

p.s. if you haven’t had dried mulberries over ice cream/smoothie bowls/acai bowls/etc, you should! They get hard and crunchy and are amazing!

 

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Raw Pizza Dip

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Raw Pizza Dip

This can be used as a pizza (flavored) dip, or a spread. Of course, it’s vegan and gluten free, but it’s also raw, nut free and oil free. It goes great as a dip with random veggies. I like it with bell peppers, cherry tomatoes, carrots, cucumbers and celery. Of course it’s fabulous with crackers or chips as well.

Tonight I made a raw pizza and used this as the spread over the crust and then topped it with a bunch of pizza type veggies. It was perfect for it! Plus, quite easy to make. So of course, had to make sure to share the recipe here!


Ingredients

  • 1 cup sundried tomatoes (not in oil), soaked in 2/3-3/4 cup water
  • 2/3 cup saved sundried tomato soak water
  • 1/4 cup raw sunflower seeds (shelled)
  • 1/4 cup raw pepitas/shelled pumpkin seeds
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1/3 cup fresh basil
  • 3 cherry tomatoes
  • juice from 1/2 lemon
  • 1 TBS coconut aminos
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper

Instructions:

Soak the sun dried tomatoes in warm water for about 20 min, longer if you have really hard tomatoes. Save the soak water because you will use it in the recipe.  Put all the ingredients into a food processor or blender. Process until everything is all mixed in. It will be mildly thick. Feel free to add more soak water if you want it thinned out more.

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Thought I would share my raw pizza process too. I got a wRAWp raw pizza crust this week at Mother’s Market (Grocery Store here in Orange County) and was excited to test em out! Random sidenote: wRAWp is a SoCal company. I liked the crust, it certainly doesn’t taste like real pizza, but I was impressed at how well it held up, while not being hard/crunchy. I thought that after spreading the pizza dip over it and letting it sit for over 30 min that it would begin to get semi soggy. Nope. Held up just great.

When you make a RAW pizza, you want to make sure you slice your veggies thin, it makes it easier to eat and seem more like ‘pizza’. On my pizza I used the pizza spread, torn massaged kale, red bell pepper, grape tomatoes, shallot and basil then sprinkled some oregano and black pepper over the top.


Hope you enjoy it!!

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Cookie Dough Fruit Dip

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Cookie Dough Fruit Dip

I have been playing around with a sweet hummus recipe. Not because hummus isn’t great on it’s own and I don’t have enough dips and sauces in my life, but because I wanted something that could be used as a fruit dip that wasn’t the usual stuff. As a kid my favorite fruit dip my mom made using marshmallow fluff and cream cheese.  So not good for you!! This dip is absolutely NOTHING like that. It’s also not just a veganized version for an unhealthy way to eat fruit. I do LOVE to dip stuff, I think I get that from my mom, having a sauce or dip with stuff just makes it so much better for me.

This started out as snickerdoodle hummus, then kind of morphed into a cookie dough type dip.


  • 1 can of chickpeas drained and rinsed
  • 3 TBS almond butter
  • 1/2 cup favorite nondairy milk
  • 2 TBS rolled oats
  • 2 dates, pitted
  • 2-4 TBS coconut sugar, or maple syrup
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • dash of sea salt
  • 3 TBS nondairy chocolate chips (I used EnjoyLife Brand mini chocolate chips)

Toss everything except the chocolate chips in your food processor or blender and blend until smooth. Either pulse in chocolate chips, or lightly mix them in once you pour hummus into a bowl. The hummus will be warm and it will start to melt them. Cover and chill in the fridge for a couple hours. It’s better cold. But not necessary.

Goes well with; banana chips, plantain chips, apple chips, apple slices, pear slices, strawberries, jicama or celery. Let me know if you come up with something else to dip in it!

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Cranberry Dill Raw Vegan Cheese

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Cranberry Dill Raw Vegan Cheese

I went to a baby shower today, it was Mara’s, and it was all vegan all gluten free. FABULOUS! It wasn’t potluck, a few of us made the dishes. I brought a few things that all were received well, and finished off. That’s always a good thing! After many requests for this cheese recipe I said it would be easier if I just shared it on here.  In some of the pictures you will see 2, but I halved this recipe, so it only makes one. And,  without further adue… ENJOY!!

-Amber

    


  


 

makes one ball (see above)

Ingredients
1 cup raw cashews, soaked overnight
4 TBS coconut oil
¼ cup cup fresh lemon juice
1 TBS tahini
2 TBS filtered water (optional rejuvelac if you have it or can find it)
½ tsp fine sea salt
¼ cup dried cranberries, finely chopped
3 TBS fresh dill, finely chopped

Instructions:

Put cashews in a container and fill with filtered water about 3 inches of water over the cashews.
10-12 hours, drain the water and rinse out with cold water. Rinse and dump a few times to get the cashews all cleaned off. Fill with filtered water again, a bit over the top of the cashews. Let them soak again for another 6-8 hours (could be 12 if you are busy) the time isn’t real strict. You are just trying to make sure they are completely soaked and softened, makes the cheese nice and creamy. Even if you have a high power blender.
After they are done soaking (total 16-24 hours), drain the liquid, rinse out again using cold water, rinse and drain until water is clear.

In your blender, combine cashews, coconut oil, lemon juice, sea salt and water. Blend on high for 45 seconds or so, stop, scrape down the sides and lid. Blend again on high, for 2 minutes.

Scoop out the cashew mixture into the center of an 8-10 inch triple layered
piece of cheese cloth (3 pieces of cheese cloth on top of each other), roll the cheesecloth over the cheese to cover it completely forming it into a ball or loaf.
Twist the ends of the cloth and secure with rubber bands or twist ties. Set it in the strainer over a bowl and let it stand for 18-24 hours at room temperature. After about 8 hours I usually add a folded up paper towel under it to help soak up some of the slight liquid.

After the (fermenting) time is up, discard the excess water (and paper towel if you used it) and place in the fridge, for at least 3 hours.

(*You can also do the following steps with the cranberry and dill and then refrigerate afterwards for several hours*)

Chop the cranberries and dill, the smaller the better.
On approximately 12” x 12” piece of parchment (or wax paper), sprinkle dill loosely, most in the middle. Place the cheese in the center on the dill, letting it stick to the cheese. Flip it over to get dill on the other side. Use your hands and lightly press the dill all over the cheese. Do the same thing for the cranberries so that both the dill and cranberries are all around the cheese.
Fold the edges of the parchment paper over the cheese, place in the fridge letting it rest on the side with the most layers. If you want to dig in to it immediately that’s perfect too!
I recommend a sturdy cracker. Van’s or Mary’s are good choices.

Nut-free Cheezy Kale Chips

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I love kale chips, so does my husband. He hadn’t had them store bought until sometime after eating my homemade ones. After having several different brands from the store and him not really liking them, he asked why I kept buying them instead of making them when what I made was way better. 

They sure don’t photograph well, but taste great.   

    
   
Makes 5-6 trays worth of chips.

1/2 C pepitas
1/2 red bell pepper
1/2 lemon, juiced
3 sundried tomatoes (I use the kind that are in olive oil, but let the oil drip off before adding them)
1/2 carrot
1 clove garlic
2 TBS tahini
1/2 tsp real salt
2 TBS coconut aminos
2 TBS water
1 green onion
1/8 tsp smoked paprika (optional)
3 TBS nutritional yeast (optional but certainly worth it!)

Rip the Kale into about 3 inch pieces, removing the spine. Place in a large bowl.

In a blender or food processor put the rest of the ingredients together & blend until nice and smooth.

Pour over kale pieces and work in with your hands, making sure that each piece has the cheeze covering it. Allow to sit for at least 20 minutes to “soak in”. After, just lay out on dehydrator trays and dehydrate for about 10 hours at 115 degrees.

p.s. if you taste the cheeze, who am I kidding, WHEN you taste the cheese out of the blender, it will taste a bit different than it tastes once it’s been dehydrated on the kale.

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