The Ultimate Vegan Mac N’Cheese

Autumn calls for comfort food, don’t ya think?

Dancing for Donuts | The Ultimate Vegan Mac N'Cheese

I recently made this vegan mac n’cheese for a giveaway with Spudsy Foods (I mentioned them in my September favorites!) and knew I had to share the full recipe on here with you guys. It’s quite possibly the easiest sauce to make – it comes together in a blender with minimal chopping – and is fantastic with any kind of pasta, although I rarely eat anything other than Banza’s chickpea pasta these days!

The “cheese” part of the sauce comes from Nutritional Yeast, which is basically a vegan supplement for Vitamin B12 and protein that happens to have a delicious cheesy flavor to it. The creaminess of the sauce comes from the soaked cashews and veggie broth, and then there’s some garlic and paprika in there too, for extra flavor! I topped this dish with Spudsy’s BBQ Sweet Potato Puffs, but you could easily just use regular bread crumbs or panko flakes!

And one last thing I’ll say: this dish even passed the bf test, which for me is a HUGE win since mine doesn’t particularly love the idea of “healthy” versions of things😂

Dancing for Donuts | The Ultimate Vegan Mac N'Cheese

The Ultimate Vegan Mac N’Cheese

your favorite pasta, cooked according to the directions

1/2 cup cashews soaked in water for at least 3 hours (or overnight)

2 tbsp nutritional yeast

1/2 cup veggie broth

1/3 cup non-dairy milk

1/2 tsp paprika

3-4 cloves garlic

3/4 tsp salt

1/2 cup crumbled Spudsy Sweet Potato Puffs (or breadcrumbs)

1. Cook pasta according to directions and while boiling, make the cashew cheese sauce below.

2. In a blender, add the soaked cashews (drained), broth, milk, nutritional yeast, paprika, garlic and salt to a blender or food processor. Blend until smooth. *If you need to add a little bit of liquid, add either more broth or water tbsp by tbsp – a little goes a long way!

3. Add the sauce to the drained pasta and keep over low to medium heat to warm the sauce.

4. Spoon the mac n’cheese into bowls or ramekins and top with the breadcrumbs or crumbled Spudsy puffs. Enjoy right away or bake in the oven at 300 degrees fahrenheit for 5-10 minutes. 

*Store leftover cashew cheese sauce in an airtight container for up to 3 days*

Dancing for Donuts | The Ultimate Vegan Mac N'Cheese

Well, that’s it for today!! Have you guys ever made vegan versions of your favorite foods? I’m not vegan, as you know, but I love this idea of re-vamping some of my meals to be more plant-based!

xo Jordan

What’s on My Thanksgiving Menu

Hey y’all! Can you believe how quickly Thanksgiving (and all of the other holidays!) are sneaking up on us?!

I wanted to share with you what I’m planning on making this year since I’ve seen SO many epic recipes out there!! I’m hoping we have a balanced mix of veggies and healthy sides, but also indulgent comfort foods because hey, ’tis the season. Everything in moderation, right?😉

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Pumpkin Pie Crescent Rolls – I made these over a week ago and am still thinking about them, that’s how good they are!!! Doughy, buttery, and not overly sweet but SO delicious. They’d be the perfect mid-morning snack while everyone is busy cooking, or as a nice post-dinner treat! If you’d like, you can grab a coupon for $1 off your next purchase of Immaculate Baking Co. dough here! It’s seriously out of this world.

Dancing for Donuts | What's on My Thanksgiving Menu

Skinny Garlic Mashed Potatoes – If there’s one blog I consistently go back to for easy and delicious recipes, it’s Gina’s. Like HOW creamy do these look?! I can’t even deal.

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Shredded Brussels Sprouts Salad with Maple Dijon Vinaigrette – Like I said, I’m a big fan of mixing the heavy stuff with some greens, too! Besides, with all the heavy foods, I always find myself craving a salad of some kind. This recipe is an oldie of mine, but a goody nonetheless. I love the parmesan and pecans, but the dressing is the standout on this one for sure!

Dancing for Donuts | What's on My Thanksgiving Menu

Roasted Thanksgiving Turkey – Wanna hear something crazy? I used to HATE turkey. Like I would load up on sides but not actually eat the turkey…and I wasn’t a vegetarian. What was I thinking?! I think this recipe is a winner because it sounds pretty simple but super flavorful. Doesn’t it look amazing??

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Vanilla Bean Mashed Sweet Potatoes – Have I told you about my sweet potato obsession yet? Because I truly am addicted, just ask my boyfriend. I think this dish might be the one I’m most looking forward to because it adds just the right amount of sweetness to the Thanksgiving plate, you know? And I love that this recipe has the vanilla bean in it to spruce things up a bit. Plus sweet potatoes are heart healthy, guys. Totally okay to have a second helping… 🙂

Dancing for Donuts | What's on My Thanksgiving Menu

Simple + Easy Cranberry Sauce – Look. You can’t have turkey without cranberry sauce, that’s just a fact. I’m actually not much of a gravy person (so sue me) but cranberry sauce I go IN on. The Kitchn (one of the best cooking resources out there) breaks it down so that you literally cannot mess it up. So helpful!!

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Apple & Hazelnut Vegan Stuffing – So like, you obviously have to have the Pepperidge Farms boxed stuffing because DUH, but also let’s be a little gourmet here and make something classy. The flavors in this stuffing are legit screaminggggg fall to me and also it’s vegan so 1) great for anyone at the table with diet restrictions and also 2) hey let’s get some real nutrients in us, yeah?

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Chocolate Honey Pecan Pie – I’m not gonna lie to you, we will most likely have a pumpkin pie (in addition to our pumpkin pie crescent rolls of course!) but I think it’s nice to have some other flavors in the mix. Pecan pie is always a classic and crowd pleaser, but this chocolate-y twist is a fun variation. The ingredients in this recipe aren’t terrible either, so you can dig in without feeling like you’re over-indulging!

Now I wanna know – what’s on your Thanksgiving menu? Where will you be spending the holiday? With loved ones, I hope 🙂

xo Jordan

Sweet Potato Nachos.

Umm ok it’s almost April. How is that possible?

The past 2 weeks have been a bit of a whirlwind, and to be honest I’m not even sure what day it is. After a fantastic trip to San Francisco and eating my bodyweight in pastries, seafood, chinese, bbq and chocolate, I’m definitely still working to get back on track. I’m still steering clear of bread/grains other than quinoa and trying to shovel in as many greens as possible. But, let’s be honest, stress and healthy eating aren’t exactly the most likely combo. Enter healthy comfort food.

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These sweet potato nachos are only 5 ingredients and the hardest part is probably just waiting for the sweet potatoes to roast. Hint: slice them as thinly as possible! These could also be vegan if you omit the cheese (or use Daiya) and are easily customizable. They’re also packed with nutrients (like protein!) and flavor (what is it about cheddar?). If you’re in need of some warm, hearty food but don’t want to sacrifice your hard work tonight, I highly suggest whipping these bad boys up.

Dancing for Donuts | Sweet Potato Nachos.

Sweet Potato Nachos

1 medium sweet potato

1 tbsp olive oil

1/2 cup black beans (canned or cooked)

2 tbsp your favorite salsa

1/2 avocado, diced

 3-4 tbsp part-skim cheddar cheese

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Peel and slice your sweet potato as thinly as possible (without chopping off a finger). Move the sweet potatoes to a rimmed baking sheet, drizzle with the olive oil and toss to evenly coat. Place the discs in an even layer and bake for 20 minutes or until soft.

2. Layer the sweet potatoes on a plate or in a bowl with the beans. Top with the cheddar cheese and pop in the microwave for ~30 seconds or until the cheese melts. *If you don’t have a microwave, just put the cheese on the potatoes for a few minutes before you take them out of the oven.

3. Top with the salsa and avocado. Dig in!

Dancing for Donuts | Sweet Potato Nachos.

xo Jordan

Chicken Parmesan Quinoa.

This is a good one, guys.

Full-disclosure, this recipe is a copycat from one of my favorite spots to grab a quick, healthy bite in Boulder, CO. Since I didn’t get to visit it during my last Colorado trip, I knew I had to find a way to recreate it so I could get my fix! This dish is so easy to make (we’re talking 30 minutes from start to finish), makes a boatload of leftovers, and is as healthy as comfort food gets.

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The chicken itself only takes 20 minutes and is so unbelievably flavorful, I can’t even. I don’t know about you, but I tend to struggle with making delicious chicken that isn’t horribly dry and boring. I think I’ve found the fix: rubbing an olive oil and spices mixture on each side before it goes in the oven. Just 20 minutes at 450 degrees does the trick and if you don’t want to use it all for this particular meal, I’m sure it would taste just as good (if not better) on top of a salad or with some roasted veggies.

Dancing for Donuts | Chicken Parmesan Quinoa.

Chicken Parmesan Quinoa

1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breast

2 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp kosher salt

1 tsp garlic powder

1 tbsp italian seasoning mix (I use one with a grinder so it tastes fresh!)

1/2 tsp black pepper

1 cup dry quinoa

1 cup of your favorite marinara sauce

1 package mozzarella, diced

1/4 cup parmesan

1/2 cup chopped tomato

  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. On a baking sheet, place each piece of chicken side by side in an even layer. *If need be, pound the chicken so that it is all the same thickness.

2. In a bowl, whisk together the olive oil, salt, garlic powder, italian seasoning, and black pepper. Rub the mixture on each side of all pieces of the chicken. Bake for 20 minutes.

3. While the chicken is cooking, place 1 cup of dry quinoa and 2 cups of water in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for ~10 minutes or until water is absorbed.

4. With the stove on low heat, add the marinara sauce, tomato, mozzarella and parmesan cheese and stir to combine.

5. Once the chicken is done, dice it and stir it into the quinoa mix. Serve immediately or store in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

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Enjoy, friends!

xo Jordan

5-Ingredient Slow-Cooker Chili.

Hi there!

So I’m not going to lie, it’s been an interesting week for me filled with lots of ups and downs. That, mixed with foggy and chilly weather has me wanting to curl up under a blanket in a giant sweater and leggings while eating comfort food for hours. Alas, my New Year’s resolutions don’t really allow for hibernating and eating triple my bodyweight everyday, so I’ve resorted to finding healthy versions of my favorite foods.

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Last week I gave you a lighter soup recipe, and this week I’m bringing you a heartier one. This chili is not only easy as pie, but also ridiculously inexpensive, super healthy, and packed with protein and fiber to keep you full for hours and hours. Adapted from this recipe, I’ve combined canned beans, canned tomatoes (low sodium!), lean ground turkey, and an onion in a slow-cooker for 6-8 hours on low. After a long work-day, this was exactly the meal I wanted to come home to. Next time I’ll try to make some lightened-up cornbread for the side! 😉

Dancing for Donuts | 5-Ingredient Slow-Cooker Chili.

5-Ingredient Slow-Cooker Chili

1 lb. lean ground turkey

1 medium red or yellow onion

2 cans beans (any kind, I used Great Northern & Kidney)

2 14 oz. cans diced tomatoes (low sodium)

1 30 oz. can whole tomatoes (low sodium)

2 tbsp. chili seasoning

  1. In a pan over medium heat, saute the ground the turkey until just cooked and brown. Drain the excess grease and place in the slow-cooker.

2. Dice the onion as finely as you like, and add that, plus the cans of diced tomatoes to the slow-cooker.

3. Drain and rinse the beans and add those to the mix, as well. Finally, add the seasoning and the whole tomatoes (I used my fingers to break them up a bit but you can keep them whole if you’d like). Cook on low for 6-8 or high for 3-5.

4. Serve immediately or store in the fridge for up to 5 days in an airtight container.

Dancing for Donuts | 5-Ingredient Slow-Cooker Chili.

Hope you’re all having a wonderful week!

xo Jordan

Skinny Pumpkin Cream Stuffed French Toast (For One!)

Y’know how sometimes the best ideas come straight outta nowhere? Yeah. This was one of those ideas.

I was laying in bed last night, dead tired and trying so hard to fall asleep but for some reason I could not to turn my brain off (does this happen to you guys?!). While ordinarily I hate when that happens, this time when food popped into my head I didn’t mind so much because I thought of the things in my fridge (bread, an egg, pumpkin, my favorite Noosa pumpkin greek yogurt, etc.) and then this recipe.

Dancing for Donuts | Skinny Pumpkin Cream Stuffed French Toast (For One!)

I used sprouted Ezekiel bread for the base, which is basically a superfood, so that + the egg + yogurt + pumpkin = heaps of protein and fiber. I only used a single tablespoon of brown sugar and the tiniest drizzle of maple syrup, so this recipe is low in sugar too (no mid-morning crash!). The pumpkin cream, which is simply pumpkin greek yogurt and some spices, makes this french toast an over-the-top comfort food breakfast perfect for the holiday season without the guilt. Doesn’t get any better than that, folks!

Dancing for Donuts | Skinny Pumpkin Cream Stuffed French Toast (For One!)

Skinny Pumpkin Cream Stuffed French Toast (For One!)

2 pieces of Ezekiel sprouted bread (or your favorite whole grain kind)

1 egg

1/8 cup pumpkin puree

1/4 cup 1% or non-fat milk (could sub almond or coconut)

1/2 tbsp brown sugar

1 tsp vanilla

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp ground ginger

3 tbsp. pumpkin greek yogurt (store bought or mix plain w/ pumpkin)

  1. In a bowl with a wide, flat bottom (I used a small pyrex dish!), whisk together the egg, pumpkin, milk, brown sugar, vanilla, cinnamon and ginger.

2. Heat a skillet on low and spray with PAM or coat with melted butter.

3.While the pan is heating, drop one piece of bread into the batter. After coating both sides of the bread completely, which will take about a minute per side, drop it onto the pan.

4. Cook on medium-low until light brown, or about 2 minutes on each side. Prep the other slice of bread in the batter while the first is cooking.

5. When the first slice is done, place the second slice on the pan. Add 2 tbsp of the pumpkin greek yogurt to the top of the bread and spread a thin layer. Add the second piece of bread on top once it is done cooking.

6. Top the 2nd slice with the remaining pumpkin yogurt, sprinkle with cinnamon and drizzle with maple syrup. Dig in!

Dancing for Donuts | Skinny Pumpkin Cream Stuffed French Toast (For One!)

Have a good weeeeeeeeek!

xo Jordan

Slow-Cooker Pumpkin Maple Granola.

Guys. Thanksgiving is in 8 days. WHAT.

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Now okay, I know I’ve been a bit obsessed with the pumpkin these days, but can you blame me? I’ve said it before, but this stuff is too good to pass up when it’s in season – tons of fiber and flavor, and SO versatile. My last pumpkin recipe was a savory one, and the one I’m bringing you today is sweet enough for dessert, but makes the perfect healthy breakfast too. It also comes together in a pinch and basically makes itself..helloooo slow-cooker. My colder-weather best friend.

Dancing for Donuts | Slow-Cooker Pumpkin Maple Granola.

I’ve paired this granola with my absolute favorite greek yogurt Noosa. The pumpkin flavor is actually out of control, if you haven’t tried it yet! Target for the win. The spices mixed with the crunch of the nuts and the chewiness of the oats make this recipe my go-to for a crowd-pleasing gift. Gluten-free, vegan and paleo, you can literally give it to anyone who needs a little homemade goodness if their life.

Dancing for Donuts | Slow-Cooker Pumpkin Maple Granola.

Slow-Cooker Pumpkin Maple Granola

(adapted from this recipe)

2 cups old fashioned oats

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp nutmeg

1 tsp ginger

1/3 cup pumpkin puree

2/3 cup maple syrup

2 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 cup chopped walnut halves

1/2 cup chopped pecans

1/2 cup seedless raisins

  1. In a large bowl, combine the oats, salt, and spices. Stir to combine.

2. In a small bowl, combine the pumpkin, maple syrup and vanilla and stir.

3. Add the pumpkin mixture to the oats, and mix until fully coated.

4. In a slow cooker set on high, pour the oats and spread in an even layer. Cook for 2 hours on high, stirring every 30 minutes. *Don’t forget this part!

5. After 2 hours, turn the slow-cooker off, add in the nuts and raisins, and mix. Store in an airtight container.

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Let me know if you guys try this! Hope you like it

🙂

xo Jordan

One-Pot Guiltless Creamy Pumpkin Pasta.

Oh come on, you knew I had more pumpkin recipes up my sleeve! And don’t worry, they’re far from over either (:

Dancing for Donuts | Guiltless One-Pot Creamy Pumpkin Pasta

I first made this dish when I had my best    
friend over the night before Halloween and have legitimately been hooked ever since. Not only is this pasta so unbelievably easy to make (one-pot = fewer dishes = YAY), but it also tastes like actual fall in a bowl. It’s comfort food at its best, but packed with protein and fiber. And trust me, coming from someone who rarely eats pasta and thinks of it as someone of a cheat food, I’ve let myself eat this almost every day.

Dancing for Donuts | Guiltless One-Pot Creamy Pumpkin Pasta

Feel free to add more protein like chicken apple sausage (wait, totally doing that next week…), pack in some wilted kale, add some shredded mozzarella, or sub the pasta for a gluten-free kind. Making a giant batch means having leftovers for the week that you can switch up without getting bored, so you really can’t go wrong…

One-Pot Guiltless Creamy Pumpkin Pasta

(inspired by this recipe)

1 14oz box of whole wheat pasta (or your favorite)

4 1/2 cups water

2 tbsp olive oil

2 tsp kosher salt

3-5 garlic cloves, minced

1 1/4 cup pumpkin puree

1 cup or 1 single-serving non-fat plain greek yogurt

1/2 cup shaved parmesan cheese + more for garnish

2+ tsp nutmeg and/or cinnamon to taste (based on your preferences!)

5-7 fresh sage leaves, finely chopped

sea salt + pepper to taste

  1. In a large pot, place the pasta, water, olive oil, garlic, salt and black pepper and bring to a full boil. Stir the pasta frequently to prevent it from sticking.

2. After about 10 minutes, the pasta should be al dente. Remove from heat and if there is still a lot of water, pour some out leaving just a thin layer of water remaining on the bottom of the pot.

3. Add the pumpkin puree, greek yogurt, parmesan, sage, spices and salt and stir until well-combined. Serve in bowls with more parmesan, spices and sage if desired. This dish stores well in an airtight container in the fridge, too!

Dancing for Donuts | Guiltless One-Pot Creamy Pumpkin Pasta

Enjoy, friends! See you soon.

xo Jordan