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Main Dishes

Luscious Lasagna

 

This is one of my favorite dinner-party dishes to make, served with garlic and basil olive bread. Makes 6 to 8 servings.

 

4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 medium red onion, chopped

5~6 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped

1 pound button mushrooms, chopped

1 pound extra-firm tofu

1 cup kalamata olives, pitted and chopped

3 tablespoons Bragg Liquid Aminos

2 tablespoons nutritional yeast

½ teaspoon dried oregano

Cayenne pepper, to taste

One 1-pound package brown rice lasagna noodles

One 16-ounce jars of your favorite vegan tomato-based pasta sauce

1 bunch fresh spinach, chopped

1 cup fresh basil leaves, torn

 

Preheat oven to 350° F. Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a skillet. Add the onion, garlic, and mushrooms and sauté until soft. Drain. Squeeze the excess water out of the tofu by pressing it in a towel. In a large bowl, crumble the tofu with a fork and stir in the sautéed vegetables, olives, liquid aminos, nutritional yeast, oregano, cayenne, and 2 tablespoons of the remaining olive oil. Adjust seasonings to make this as spicy as you can. Set aside to marinate. In the meantime, cook the lasagna noodles according to package instructions.

 

Spread the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil over the bottom of a large casserole dish, then cover the oil with a layer of tomato sauce. Place a layer of lasagna noodles on top of the sauce. Spread half the tofu mixture over the noodles. Next, add a layer of spinach to cover the tofu mixture, then add half the basil leaves on top of the spinach. Add another layer of noodles, then layer with the remaining tofu mixture, then spinach, then basil leaves. Cover with a final layer of noodles, then spinach, basil, and sauce. Bake for 45 minutes.

 

Breaded Tofu Cutlets

 

Serve this dish with brown rice and Spicy Collard Greens for a classic meal. Makes 4 servings.

 

1 pound extra-firm tofu

3 tablespoons Bragg Liquid Aminos

3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced

½ cup nutritional yeast

¼ cup whole wheat flour

½ red onion, chopped

1 teaspoon dried oregano

Cayenne pepper, to taste

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

 

Preheat oven to 350° F.

 

Slice the tofu into small rectangular pieces (about 1 inch thick). Mix the liquid aminos, onion, and garlic in a large bowl and add the tofu. Marinate for about 10 minutes, stirring to make sure all sides get covered with marinade.

 

In another bowl, mix together the remaining ingredients except for olive oil. Dredge the individual tofu cutlets in the dry ingredients, turning over to make sure they are well coated with breading. Place the cutlets on a baking sheet oiled with the olive oil. Bake until golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes.                                                                                                   

 

Mediterranean Chickpea Salad

 

I like serving this dish while the chickpeas are still warm. It’s a very satisfying dish-- you don’t need to eat a lot to feel full. Makes 4 servings.

 

1 cup dried chickpeas, soaked overnight, drained, and rinsed OR 2 15-ounce cartons or cans of pre-cooked chickpeas

3-4 cups water, if using dried chickpeas

1 small red onion, chopped

4 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped

½ teaspoon curry powder

1 tablespoon nutritional yeast

1 red bell pepper, cored, seeded, and chopped

5 leaves fresh basil, chopped

1 tablespoon egg- and dairy-free mayonnaise

2 tablespoons low-sodium tamari or soy sauce

1 avocado, peeled, seeded, and chopped

 

If using dried chickpeas, place them in the water in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 2 to 3 hours until soft. Drain and transfer the chickpeas to a large bowl. Or if using pre-cooked chickpeas, drain and place in a large bowl.

Add the remaining ingredients and stir gently. Cover and let the ingredients marinate for 5 to 10 minutes. 

 

 

Pizza-z! 

 

This is one delicious pizza! I can eat a whole one by myself (shhhh!). Makes 2 to 3 servings.

 

One 12-inch whole-grain pizza crust (I get Vicolo brand from Whole Foods)

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon Bragg Liquid Aminos or natural soy sauce

2 tablespoons nutritional yeast

Dash cayenne pepper, or to taste

¼ large red onion, chopped

3 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped

1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved

2 tablespoons capers or ½ cup pitted and halved black olives

2 avocados, peeled, seeded, and chopped coarse

 

Preheat the oven according to package directions for pizza crust.

 

Mix the olive oil, liquid aminos or soy sauce, and nutritional yeast together in a bowl and brush onto the pizza crust before baking. Bake according to package instructions. Remove pizza crust from oven and arrange the remaining ingredients on top. Bake 5 more minutes or until toppings are hot enough for your taste.

 

 

Broccoli Ginger Cashew Stir-Fry

 

This stir-fry is perfect served over brown rice or noodles. The key to this dish is not to overcook the broccoli. I prefer mine slightly wilted but still crisp and bright green. Makes 4 servings.

 

3 tablespoons sesame oil

1 medium red onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped

1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger

1 red bell pepper, cored, seeded, and chopped

1 head broccoli, chopped (florets only)

¼ cup cashew pieces

1 tablespoon Bragg Liquid Aminos

Dash cayenne

1 tablespoon Thai curry paste (optional)

 

Heat the sesame oil in a skillet or wok. Add the onion, garlic, ginger, and red pepper and sauté until soft. Remove these vegetables from the oil and set aside. Using the same oil, turn up the heat and add the broccoli to the hot oil. Stir-fry for about 10 minutes. Reduce heat, add the vegetables back in, and add remaining ingredients. Stir and let sit covered on low heat for another 5 minutes. Serve over brown rice or whole-grain pasta.

 

 

Spicy Black Beans

 

I knew I was onto something when my brother-in-law, who’s an awesome cook, asked me for a pot of these beans. They taste great in tacos and burritos, too. Makes 4 servings.

 

1 cup dry black beans, soaked overnight, drained, and rinsed

3 cups water

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

½ red onion, chopped course

4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced

2 tablespoons Bragg Liquid Aminos

Cayenne pepper, to taste

2 tablespoons hot salsa

1 avocado, peeled, seeded, and cut into chunks

5 cherry tomatoes, halved

2 tablespoons nutritional yeast

 

Place the beans in a large pot with 3 cups water and bring to a rapid boil. Turn down heat and simmer, covered, for 2 hours.

 

In the meantime, heat the olive oil in a skillet. Sauté onion and garlic until translucent and set aside. When beans are soft, pour out most of the water (save for stock). Stir in the sautéed onion and garlic and remaining ingredients except avocado and simmer over low heat for about 10 minutes. Add the avocado chunks before serving.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Veggie Skewers

 

This dish is easy, delicious, and pretty. You can’t ask for more. Serve it with Curry Quinoa for a colorful meal. Makes 4 servings.

 

2 tablespoons Bragg Liquid Aminos

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1/8 teaspoon dried basil

2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped

Cayenne pepper, to taste

1 pound extra-firm tofu, cubed

3 roma tomatoes, cored and cubed

1 zucchini, sliced into rounds

1 yellow squash, sliced into rounds

12 white button mushrooms

 

Preheat oven to 350° F or preheat grill on medium heat and lightly oil the grate. Mix the liquid aminos, olive oil, dried basil, garlic, and cayenne pepper in a bowl. Add the tofu cubes to the mixture and marinate for about 15 minutes, turning cubes often to make sure they all get covered with sauce.

Arrange the tofu cubes and vegetables onto 4 skewers. Brush sauce evenly over the vegetables. Sprinkle on more dried basil so that it sticks to the veggies. For oven, place the skewers in a long pan and bake uncovered in the oven until the edges of the tofu turn golden brown, for about 15 minutes. For grill, place the skewers on the lightly oiled grate, turning a few times, and cook until tender, for about 15 minutes.

Pepper “Steak”

 

Do you have a good friend who’s an excellent cook, loves to experiment in the kitchen, and calls you over to try out her latest creations? For me that’s Saundra Woods. This recipe is made with seitan, a popular “mock meat” made from wheat gluten. Makes 2 servings.

 

1 tablespoon coconut oil or grapeseed oil

1 medium red onion, chopped

½ red bell pepper, cored, seeded, and chopped

½ orange bell pepper, cored, seeded, and chopped

½ cup seitan pieces (try West Soy brand sold at health food stores)

¼ teaspoon Spike seasoning

½ tablespoon crushed garlic

1 tomato, cored and diced

2 stalks celery, chopped (optional)

1 tablespoon Bragg Liquid Aminos

2 tablespoons nutritional yeast

 

Heat coconut or grapeseed oil in a medium saucepan and sauté the onion and peppers until translucent. Add seitan, Spike, garlic, tomato, celery if desired, and liquid aminos and stir-fry for about 10 minutes. Stir in nutritional yeast last. Serve over whole grain pasta made from corn or whole wheat.

 

 

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