Peanut Butter Banana Cookies

Vegan cookies once again! This recipe was made somewhat by accident. A lot of peanut butter was given to me one day and I wanted to use it up. I searched for a peanut butter cookie recipe and stumbled across something I could create. I did not expect them to be that good but they ended up turning out to be fantastic!!

Try to use a ripe to very ripe banana (yellow or yellow with brown flecks) so the cookies will taste sweeter. If you make a batch of this cookie dough and keep in the fridge, the banana will keep gaining ripeness and turn the dough sweeter. So a win-win! Overall, they are great vegan cookies that don’t use any oil.

Yields about 10-14 (depending on cookie size)

Peanut Butter Banana Cookies

Ingredients:
1 cup peanut butter (or nut butter)
1 ripe banana, mashed
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 TB vanilla (or water)
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix the peanut butter, banana, and sugar. Add in the flours, then vanilla. It may be tough to mix together but keep working at it. Bake cookies for 15 minutes, if you like really soft cookies bake 10 minutes.

*Notes: If the cookies need more moisture or want more banana flavor, you could use 2 mashed bananas. Also, if you do not like whole wheat flour, use all regular flour.

Peanut Butter Banana Cookies

Black Rice Lima Bean Bowl

This bowl is bursting with bright green and orange colors! The dish is a perfect meal because it is vegan and a complete protein with black rice and black beans included. Whole grains are even present because black rice is a 100% whole grain product! The flavors blend beautifully together! The black rice offers an earthy element, the black bean filling offers cumin scented sweet potatoes, and the lima beans offer a colorful, chewy texture.

Black Rice Lima Bean Bowl

Servings: 1 bowl

Ingredients:
1/2 cup sweet potato black bean enchilada filling
1/3 cup black rice
1/3 cup lima beans
Salt and pepper

Directions:
In the bowl, place the filling, black rice, and lima beans. Either heat the dish in the microwave for 2 minutes or on the stove for 4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Enjoy!

Black Rice Lima Bean Bowl

Sweet Potato Black Bean Enchiladas

These healthy enchiladas are vegan, although you can add cheese if you want, and great to keep during the week for quick meals. They provide a good source of vegetables from kale, sweet potatoes, and onion. The sweet-potato black bean filling is also versatile, not just to make enchiladas. It can be used as a side, a dip for chips, or served with rice. The unique ingredient in this recipe is soy sauce, which gives all the flavors an extra push without having that strong soy sauce taste.

Sweet Potato Black Bean Enchiladas

Yields about 12 enchiladas
There will be leftover filling

Ingredients:
2 sweet potatoes, medium to large (or 3 smaller)
1/2 cup low-sodium vegetable broth, divided
1/2 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon coriander
2 teaspoons ground cumin
4 large kale leaves, chopped
2 cans (15-oz each) black beans, drained
4 TB low-sodium soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon salt
Corn or whole wheat tortillas
Enchilada sauce

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
Cook sweet potatoes separately by either steaming in the microwave for 10 minutes or roasting in the oven for 30-45 minutes. Remove skin and mash the potatoes when they are soft and set aside until ready to use.

Heat 2 TB vegetable broth in a pot over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic, and saute until soft. Add the coriander and cumin. Next, add the rest of the vegetable broth, kale, black beans, soy sauce, and mashed sweet potatoes. Cover and cook for 5 minutes, or until the kale is wilted and soft. Season with salt.

In a pan, place a thin layer of the enchilada sauce on the bottom. Place 3-4 tablespoons of the mixture on each tortilla (or whatever feels right), roll up, and place seam side down in the pan. Fill up the entire pan and cover the top lightly with enchilada sauce. Bake for 20-30 minutes.

If you have leftover sweet potato-black bean mixture, keep in the fridge to make more enchiladas later. Also, it can be great for other meal uses, like my Black Rice Lima Bean Bowl!

Sweet Potato Black Bean Enchiladas

Sweet Potato Black Bean Enchiladas

Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

These chocolate chip cookies are my go-to recipe for quick cookies, especially since I don’t buy eggs very often. They are chewy, rich, and the dough can make a great snack!

Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

Yields 36 cookies (small size)

Ingredients:
2 sticks vegan butter
1 1/4 cup brown sugar (or white sugar)
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 TB cold water
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup all purpose flour (other types of flour are good too)
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
1-2 cups chocolate chips

Directions:
375 degrees
Bake for 8-10 minutes
Cream the vegan butter, sugar, and vanilla. Beat in the 2 TB water. Mix in the flours, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Last, add the chocolate chips.

This makes a lot of dough so you can keep some in the freezer, which makes for a great snack along with the ability to bake cookies quick!

*Note: Other flour options instead of the all purpose flour I like using are oat flour or spelt flour.

Adapted from The Complete Vegan Kitchen cookbook

Crockpot Cranberry Sauce

Thow everything in the crockpot and walk away for 3 hours, it’s so easy!! This way you can eat fruit in a fun way! This cranberry sauce turns into a nice thick sauce for the holidays. Great for making the day before or day of. Heck, you could just transport the whole crockpot bowl once it’s done cooking.

Crockpot Cranberry Sauce

Serves 10 (1/4 each)
Quantity: 2 1/2 cups

Ingredients:
12 oz package fresh cranberries
1 orange, juiced and zested
1 tsp ground ginger (or fresh ginger)
14 dates
3/4 cup hot water

Directions:
Blend the dates and hot water in a blender till chunky or smooth. If you don’t want to or can’t do this, chop up the dates in small pieces and soak them in the hot water to soften them. Add the cranberries, orange, ginger, dates and water (or date/water paste) to the crockpot. Turn on LOW for about 3 hours. When this is done, smash the cranberries with a spoon against the side of the crockpot so they burst. As the cranberry sauce cools, it will thicken up. This sauce is great hot or cold!

Crockpot Cranberry Sauce

Crockpot Cranberry Sauce

Crockpot Cranberry Sauce

Eggnog Café

You could call this coffee your Christmas morning cup! This has all the desired spices you can taste and it can be dairy-free (like I drink it)! Keep a pot of this brew going on the stove all morning. If you use the real good stuff eggnog, this will be a nice thick beverage!

Eggnog Café

12 oz brewed coffee (1 1/2 cups), recipe here
3/4 cup eggnog [or just NOG if using dairy-free eggnog]

Directions:
Heat the eggnog in a pan on the stove or in the microwave. Brew the coffee using 4 TB coffee and 1 1/2 cups water however you desire, with whatever method. Mix the eggnog and coffee together, you can adjust how much eggnog you add for the level of sweetness.

Eggnog Café

Brewed Coffee

This is a simple brewed coffee ratio that I always use and it never fails me! Measuring is important if you want your coffee to turn out perfect every time. I am a coffee enthusiast and love finding new tricks to making great coffee.

Brewed Coffee

12 oz (1 1/2 cups) water
4 TB coffee

If the beans aren’t already ground, grind them (which are best freshly ground). With this ratio, brew the coffee however you want whether it be in a coffee pot, drip system, aeropress, French press, etc.

With using a French press, let the coffee grounds soak in hot water for 4-5 minutes, then press. With using a drip system, as the water is soaking through the coffee grounds in the filter, stir the grounds to ensure maximum flavor and that each ground is getting soaked.

Brewed Coffee