Loaded Potato Skins

I’ve been going through a bit of a transitory period in my life, and I haven’t written a post in a while. Ultimately I decided to close my bakery business to pursue a different career path. I love baking and cooking for others, but I quickly found out that owning a business was not for me. Pulling the trigger on closing my business to choose a new path in life has been a mixed bag. I’m excited to make steps towards a new career, but at the same time letting go of something I had worked very hard to build up was stressful. But hey, what’s better for stress than some comfort food? I made these vegan Loaded Potato Skins to fill the comfort food void, so I thought I’d share them with all of you. These are far from healthy, but it’s okay to indulge every once in a while. I think as a whole this has been a pretty stressful year for just about everyone. Have a treat. You’ve earned it.


Loaded Potato Skins

  • Servings: 10
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 5 medium russet potatoes
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • a pinch of salt
  • a pinch of pepper
  • 2 tbsp chopped chives
  • vegan sour cream
  • 5 strips vegan bacon, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup vegan shredded “cheddar” cheese

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Thoroughly wash and dry potatoes. Poke a few holes in each potato with a fork. Wrap each potato in foil.
  3. Place foil wrapped potatoes on an ungreased baking sheet, and bake for forty minutes. Turn potatoes over halfway through cook time.
  4. Remove potatoes from oven, and allow to cool completely. Remove foils for quicker cooling.
  5. Cut each completely cooled potato in half lengthwise, and scoop out the center with a spoon. There should be about 1/4 inch of potato flesh left connected to the outer skin.
  6. Set the scooped out potato aside, and save for another meal. This can easily be made into mashed potatoes.
  7. In a small bowl combine oil, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Brush onto both sides of the potatoes.
  8. Return potatoes skin side up to the baking sheet, and bake for an additional fifteen minutes.
  9. Remove from oven, flip over, and add vegan cheddar cheese shreds and chopped vegan bacon. I don’t recommend cooking the bacon before hand, as it can dry out too much and burn in the oven. I used light life bacon strips.
  10. Bake for another five minutes, or until cheese is melted, and bacon is crisp.
  11. Remove from oven. Top each potato with sour cream and chopped chives to taste. Serve with some of your other favorite appetizers, and enjoy.

Cold Brew Coffee

Coffee is one of my favorite things to drink any time, and as the temperature rises in the summer, cold brew is one of my favorite ways to consume coffee.

Due to the fact that the ongoing pandemic has kept me away from the local coffee shops that I would typically be visiting to satisfy my cravings, and because a cup of cold brew from a shop can cost nearly $5, I’ve found a way to brew my own. The method that I use doesn’t require any fancy equipment, and you likely already have everything that you need in your kitchen to make your batch of delicious cold brew. All you’ll need is a quart sized container, a fine mesh strainer, paper coffee filters, ground coffee and filtered water. You’ll also need some time– but that’s just for the coffee to brew.


Cold Brew Coffee

  • Difficulty: easy
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Recipe is made in quart sized container.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of ground coffee
  • filtered water

Directions

  1. Place 1 cup of ground coffee into container. I use a quart size mason jar, if you are using a vessel that is a different size, you will need to adjust the ratio of coffee to liquid. For example, if you were to use a pint sized container, you would use only one 1/2 cup of ground coffee.
  2. Begin to pour filtered water over the coffee grounds. once there is enough water in the vessel to saturate the coffee, stir to make sure all of the grounds have been saturated. I like to use a chopstick to do this.
  3. Fill the vessel up the rest of the way with water, leaving a minimal amount of space at the top.
  4. Cover and refrigerate for about 24 hours.
  5. After 24 hours have passed, you need to strain the ground coffee out of the cold brew. I like to do this in two stages. First, pour the cold brew into a bowl through a fine mesh strainer and let all of the liquid drain from the coffee grounds before discarding them. Next, place a paper coffee filter in the strainer, and filter the coffee again into another bowl before pouring it back into the brewing vessel.
  6. Serve chilled and over ice. The cold brew coffee will keep in the fridge for about a week.

Seitan Tacos With Grilled Pineapple

With the temperatures outside rising as we head closer towards summer we’ve been on the search for lighter recipes than usual. After all, the freshness of in season fruits and vegetables can feel just as luxurious and decadent as the comfort food we seek during the fall and winter.

We worked on developing a great comfort food recipe that won’t weigh you down during a heatwave. After a lot of experimentation we came up with our Seitan Tacos with Grilled Pineapple recipe. The marinade is refreshing and light, and the grilled seitan has the vibe of a carnitas taco. Grilled pineapple, and a splash of lime add some fruity freshness to the mix.

These tacos pair well with a side of elote, grilled corn with herbed butter, or more tacos! As always, tacos go great with your favorite Mexican beer or soda. You can top your tacos with guacamole, and/or have it as a side. Make your own guac, or buy it at the store. Just make sure you check the label to make sure it’s vegan. Some guacamole can contain dairy products.

Seitan Tacos With Grilled Pineapple

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
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You’ll need skewers to grill your taco ingredients.

Taco Marinade

  • 1/4 cup tamari
  • 3 tbsp lime juice
  • 1 tbsp vegan worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flake

Ingredients

  • 8″ tortillas
  • 16 oz seitan (2 packs of Upton’s Naturals)
  • 1/2 red onion
  • 1 cup pineapple chunks
  • butter lettuce
  • vegan sour cream (optional)
  • guacamole (optional)
  • additional lime juice for flavor (optional)

Directions

  1. Combine ingredients for the marinade in a bag, or container.
  2. Break the seitan down into chunks that are bite sized, but still large enough to skewer.
  3. Cut onion down into pieces that are large enough to skewer.
  4. You can either purchase pre-sliced pineapple, or cut down a whole pineapple. Either way cut the rings down into smaller chunks.
  5. Combine onion, pineapple, and seitan in the marinade. Refrigerate for at least one hour, or over night.
  6. Place onion and pineapple on skewers together. They will require less cook time than the seitan.
  7. Skewer the seitan pieces. The seitan pieces will take about 10-15 minutes on the grill.
  8. Put the onion and pineapple skewers on the grill when you are about halfway through cooking the seitan.
  9. Remove from heat, and remove from skewers.
  10. Assemble your tacos with the seitan-onion-pineapple mixture topped with some lettuce, guacamole, sour cream, and your favorite hot sauce. Finish it off with an additional splash of lime.

Complete Guide to Tofu Cream Cheese

A good vegan cream cheese can be hard to find. I’ve found that a lot of the store bought vegan cream cheese has something a bit off in taste, texture, or sometimes both. Today I’d like to share a few tofu cream cheese recipes we’ve developed over the past couple of months. Making your cream cheese at home is super simple, and more affordable than most store bought cream cheese.

undefinedIf you don’t want to make your own cream cheese, and prefer to buy it at the supermarket that’s perfectly okay. Our favorite store bought vegan cream cheese’s are Tofutti, Trader Joe’s, and Follow Your Heart. We prefer the soy and tofu based cream cheese. It has the best texture and taste out of all of the products we’ve tried. Follow Your Heart is great, but they’re changing their cream cheese recipe to become soy-free. We haven’t had their new recipe yet, so I can’t speak to it’s quality, but we love every Follow Your Heart product we’ve had so I’m optimistic.

We haven’t tried a lot of nut based cream cheese due to allergies in the family, but we have had Kite Hill’s almond based cream cheese. It’s great, but I still find myself preferring the texture of soy based cream cheese products.

If you’re up for making your own cream cheese we’ve been hard at work developing a recipe that can be easily adapted to add different flavors. We’ve made a basic plain cream cheese, a strawberry, and a garlic and chive. All you’ll need to get started are a few basic ingredients you can find at most supermarkets, and a blender or food processor.

Tofu Cream Cheese

  • Servings: 8-10
  • Difficulty: easy
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You will need a high speed blender or food processor for this recipe. A high speed blender works best.

Ingredients

  • 6 oz extra-firm Mori-Nu silken tofu (half a package)
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt

Directions

  1. Add 6 oz of extra-firm silken tofu to a blender or food processor. Place other half of tofu in a container to save in the fridge or freezer.
  2. Melt coconut oil, and add into the blender or food processor.
  3. Add all other ingredients.
  4. Blend on high until all ingredients are well integrated, and the mixture is smooth texture.
  5. Move to a reusable container, and store in the fridge for up to a week. Chill for at least an hour before using to allow the coconut oil to set.


Vegetable oil can be used in lieu of coconut oil, if you prefer the taste, but this will give the cream cheese a much thinner consistency.

Our Garlic Chive Cream Cheese recipe is very similar to the original plain recipe. It only calls for a few additional ingredients. This makes a great schmear for a plain bagel, or one that you’re topping with other ingredients.

Garlic Chive Tofu Cream Cheese

  • Servings: 8-10
  • Difficulty: easy
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You will need a high speed blender or food processor for this recipe. A high speed blender works best.

Ingredients

  • 6 oz extra-firm Mori-Nu silken tofu (half a package)
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp chopped chives
  • 1 tsp rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • small pinch of onion powder

Directions

  1. Add 6 oz of extra-firm silken tofu to a blender or food processor. Place other half of tofu in a container to save in the fridge or freezer.
  2. Melt coconut oil, and add into the blender or food processor.
  3. Add all other ingredients with the exception of the chives.
  4. Blend on high until all ingredients are well integrated, and the mixture is smooth texture.
  5. Move to a reusable container, and stir in finely chopped chives.
  6. Store in the fridge for up to a week. Chill for at least an hour before using to allow the coconut oil to set.


Vegetable oil can be used in lieu of coconut oil, if you prefer the taste, but this will give the cream cheese a much thinner consistency.

The recipe for strawberry cream cheese requires a few substitutions as well as additions. Be sure to pay close attention to the recipe below if you’re trying to make a fruit flavored cream cheese. We recommend using apple cider vinegar for this one, and adding less salt. You’ll probably want to use a natural sweetener like maple syrup or agave. We developed this recipe with strawberries, but you can use other fruit if you’d prefer. If you come up with a great flavor combination let us know in the comments.

Strawberry Tofu Cream Cheese

  • Servings: 8-10
  • Difficulty: easy
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You will need a high speed blender or food processor for this recipe. A high speed blender works best.

Ingredients

  • 6 oz extra-firm Mori-Nu silken tofu (half a package)
  • 1/4 cup fresh strawberries
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • dash of sea salt

Directions

  1. Add 6 oz of extra-firm silken tofu to a blender or food processor. Place other half of tofu in a container to save in the fridge or freezer.
  2. Melt coconut oil, and add into the blender or food processor.
  3. Add all other ingredients.
  4. Blend on high until all ingredients are well integrated, and the mixture is smooth texture.
  5. Move to a reusable container, and store in the fridge for up to a week. Chill for at least an hour before using to allow the coconut oil to set.


Vegetable oil can be used in lieu of coconut oil, if you prefer the taste, but this will give the cream cheese a much thinner consistency.

Grilled Pineapple Beyond Burger

undefinedGrilling a burger might be self explanatory itself, but sometimes your burger game can get redundant. We want to keep bringing you fresh vegan recipes to add variety to your burger repertoire. The Grilled Pineapple Beyond Burger is a great combination of all the flavors. There’s the sweetness of the pineapple, the bitterness from the char, the umami and saltiness from the burger and the almond butter, the spiciness from the sriracha sauce, and some added freshness brought to you by some fresh butter lettuce.

undefinedRecently, when we haven’t been able to find fresh lettuce from our local farmers markets, or our garden, we’ve been purchasing living lettuce from the supermarket. If you’re not familiar, living lettuce is lettuce sold with the roots attached. It maintains it’s freshness for so much longer than traditional lettuce that’s harvested without the roots. Having fresh produce makes a huge difference in taste.

We served these burgers with a side of teriyaki grilled potatoes. They were a great flavor compliment to the pineapple, and sriracha sauce.


Grilled Pineapple Beyond Burger

  • Servings: 1
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp almond or other nut butter
  • 1 pineapple ring
  • 1 tsp Sriracha
  • 1/4 lb Beyond Beef
  • 4-5 leaves of fresh butter lettuce
  • 1 hamburger bun

Directions

  1. Form Beyond Beef into a patty. You can skip this step if you’ve bought the preformed burger patties.
  2. Cut pineapple ring, and wash and dry the lettuce. Set the lettuce off to the side.
  3. Grill Beyond Burger for about 4 minutes on each side.
  4. Add the pineapple slice to the grill halfway through the burger’s cook time. Flip after about 2 minutes.
  5. You can toast the bun on the grill for about a minute, if desired.
  6. Assemble the burger starting with a drizzle of Sriracha sauce on the bottom bun, then the butter lettuce, and the burger patty.
  7. Spread about 2 tbsp almond butter (or other nut butter) on top of the burger. Nestle the pineapple into the almond butter.
  8. Add an additional drizzle of Sriracha sauce if you desire, and enjoy.

Grilled Seitan Kabobs

undefinedAs we move forward into summer we’ve really been enjoying spending time outside, and using our grill. It’s a nice change of pace to sit outside and eat, since we’ve spent the past few months of quarantine sitting on our couch or kitchen table at dinner time. It feels like so long since we’ve gone out to eat, and we’ve started to think of our backyard as our own exclusive restaurant.

undefinedKabobs are a great nutritious dinner, and they allow for a lot of variety in your meal that some other grilling staples don’t. We used seitan, red bell pepper, mushroom, and red onion for our kabobs. As always feel free to improvise your ingredients to fit your own tastes. Tofu, tempeh, zucchini, squash, Brussels sprouts, and a lot of other veggies are also great options for grilling on a kabob.

undefinedFor sides we made grilled corn on the cob with herbed butter, and some jasmine rice. Rice is a great grilling side, because you can make it in advance and then reheat it on the grill. We added some olive oil, cumin, coriander, oregano, red pepper flakes, and a little bit of worcestershire sauce. We put a few servings of the rice in a foil pack and reheated it on the grill for ten minutes. It took on a really nice smoky flavor from the charcoal.

Grilled Seitan Kabobs

  • Servings: approximately 5
  • Difficulty: easy
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If you’re using bamboo or wood skewers make sure you soak them for at least a half hour prior to use.

Kabob Marinade

  • 1/4 cup vegan worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder

Ingredients

  • 2 packs of Uptons Seitan (16 oz), crumbled
  • 1 pack of baby bella mushrooms, halved
  • 1 large red bell pepper
  • 1/2 red onion

Directions

  1. Combine vegan worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, and olive oil, maple syrup, dijon mustard, and lemon juice in a bowl together and emulsify with a whisk. Mix in basil, parsley, garlic powder, onion powder, and black pepper.
  2. Crumble Seitan into large chunks, and place into a freezer bag or other large container.
  3. Wash, dry, and halve the mushrooms. Halving them is an important step. If they’re whole they will be larger than the seitan chunks and end up burning on the grill before they cook through the whole way. Add the mushrooms to the freezer bag or container.
  4. Wash and clean the bell pepper. Remember to remove the rubbery fins inside. Cut down into large triangles or square chunks that are about the same size in width as the seitan pieces. Add them into the bag or container.
  5. Cut the onion in half, and remove the skin from one side. Save the other side to use for something else. Cut the onion down into pieces that are a similar size to the bell pepper. Add them to the bag.
  6. Pour marinade over the kabob ingredients in the bag, and seal.
  7. Refrigerate for at least one hour.
  8. Place your ingredients on your skewers in a repeating pattern.
  9. If you have smaller chunks of seitan, or other ingredients left over once you’ve made your kabobs (we made ten) you can place them in a foil pack if you desire to save for later or cook on the grill.
  10. Grill each kabob for at least 3 minutes on one side, or until it gets a nice char. Flip over and cook for 3 minutes on the other side. Remove from heat.