When we first started this blog, one of the first things we tried to recreate was a vegan version of In-n-Out's Double Double burger. It was a sad attempt- bad photography, ingredients that weren't quite right, and the flavor just wasn't there. But 4 years later, we vegans are blessed with some amazing advances in the way of faux meats and cheeses, and our photography has gotten quite a bit better. If you're not from around here, you may not realize the cultural significance of In-n-Out on Southern California, but it is considered the best of the best in the fast-food world and has longer drive-thru lines than I've ever seen anywhere else. A 'double double' means two patties & two slices of cheese, and animal style is when they slather it in their thousand island-style sauce and grilled onions. In fact, its the first meal I ever ate when I came to California!
As the base for this burger, we used the amazingly meaty new patty from Beyond Meat, the BEAST BURGER. Yup. The beast burger. Its totally beastly, and would totally fool even the most regular of beef burger eaters. And it was the perfect substitute in this burger. It kept the flavorful, umami taste of a normal In-n-Out burger, but doesn't leave you feel guilty after eating a double stack. We slathered it in homemade 'sauce' and topped it with fresh slices of tomato and lettuce. Craving a juicy burger? Let's do this!
1/2 cup vegan mayo
2 tablespoons ketchup
2 tablespoons relish
2 tablespoons white or apple cider vinegar
1 teasoon lemon juice
salt + pepper to taste
1 tablespoon oil
1/2 large white onion, diced
1/4 each salt + pepper
4-5 tablespoons cold water
In a small mixing bowl combine mayo, ketchup, relish, vinegar, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Mix well to combine. Set aside.
Heat oil in a medium cast iron pan over medium heat. Add diced onion, salt, and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, adding 1 tablespoon of water each time onions begin to dry out. Repeat this process until onions are dark brown, soft, and caramelized. Keep warm on low heat or set aside.
In the same or another large frying pan, heat oil over medium heat. Place two patties on the pan, and slather the top of each patty with 1 tablespoon mustard. Cook about 2 minutes on now side, until the patty is beginning to brown and crisp. Flip, add a slice of cheese to each patty, and fry patties in the mustard for another 2 minutes or so, until cheese is melted. While burgers cook, place buns bottom side down in a greased frying pan and heat about 1 minute on each side, until edges just begin to crisp.
Remove from heat, and top with spread, pickles, burgers, onions, tomato and lettuce. Then EAT!
I'm big on comfort food. Growing up my favorite food was mashed potatoes with gravy, and I ate them as often as I could. Lucky for me, I grew up in a state where some counties took the month of September off from school to harvest potatoes! They were on the table 5 nights a week, and I just learned to love 'em. I try to eat more of a variety of a color palette now, but I still LOVE comfort foods. And this week, I've been feeling pretty under the weather. As a nanny, I get sick nearly every time the little ones do, no matter how much vitamin C I've consumed, and this week I went down hard. Some combination of tummy trouble/ chills/ sore throat + an awful cough had me down and all I wanted was a warm, creamy, cheesy bowl of soup to make me feel better. This soup is perfect. The carrots and celery add great flavor and the potatoes keep it creamy, and the addition of cayenne kicks it up just a bit. Just serve with fresh parsley, a bit of crusty bread, & a Netflix marathon and call it an afternoon.
1 tablespoon coconut oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 medium onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, thinly sliced
2 medium carrots, thinly sliced
3 small potatoes, cut into small cubes
2 heads broccoli florets with stems removed (about 4 cups), chopped
3 cups vegetable broth
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon each salt & pepper
1 cup vegan cheese (we used Blode Kuh's White Cheddar, but any cheeze capable of melting should work here!)
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
In a large pot, heat oil over medium heat. Sauté garlic with onions, celery, and carrots in a mirepoix until they begin to soften. Add potatoes and broccoli florets and sauté all together for a few minutes, stirring occasionally. Add in vegetable broth, nutritional yeast, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper and cook over medium heat for about 20 minutes, or until potatoes are fork tender. Remove from heat, add the cheese, and blend with an immersion blender or in a regular blender in batches to desired creaminess. We like to leave some chunks! Stir in the freshly chopped parsley, then serve. Makes 6-8 servings, and lasts up to a week in the fridge. Freeze for long-term saving. Enjoy!
I love fermented foods. Kombucha, sauerkraut, kimchi- you get the gist. My most common grilled cheese to munch is with a bit of thousand island, grilled onions, and sauerkraut, kind of like a tempeh reuben without the tempeh. Something about the way those savory, salty favors mingle makes my mouth water and I can't get enough. In order to fulfill my latest craving but mix it up a bit, I came up with this humdinger. The sour, salty, crunchiness will leave you satisfied and is a fun way to add more probiotic foods to your lunch! They help with digestion, and I know many of us with food allergies suffer from tummy troubles- sometimes explained, sometimes not. Increasing the amount of fermented foods you eat can help your gut's pH and good bacteria increase, and can help you ingest food better. Anyway, try this one- I think you're gonna love it...and your tummy will too!
2 slices of crusty bread (we prefer sourdough)
about 1/4 cup vegan cheese
about 1/4 cup coconut bacon
kimchi (your amount will vary based on preference)
vegan butter or coconut oil, for frying
Heat a medium skillet over medium heat until warm. While heating, spread both slices of bread with your favorite vegan cheese (or top with slices. We used Blode kuh Sriracha Cheddar.) Sprinkle with coconut bacon, then assemble sandwich by placing the other slice of bread on top of the first. Spread both outer sides of bread with a thin layer of vegan butter or coconut oil, then place on the heated skillet. Fry until bread becomes golden and crispy, then flip and toast the other side. When sandwich is finished, remove from skillet and open it up. Layer kimchi inside, sprinkle with a bit more coconut bacon, and replace bread. Slice into two melty, crunchy halves and eat immediately. Enjoy!
Sometimes, I wake up craving salad. I have a hard time eating too many 'lunch' foods before 9 am, but when you want cucumbers, you want cucumbers. The last time this happened (2 days ago), I decided a green smoothie would be the way to go. I made the smoothie and started drinking it...but it was just too sweet. I wanted ONIONS. I wanted CHEEZE. I wanted a salad. To add a bit of protein and circumvent the fact that I didn't actually have any greens, I subbed in a healthy serving of quinoa and mixed in some of my favorite super fresh, summer flavors like radish, lemon, and fresh pear tomatoes straight from the garden. With all those tasty summer flavors you only need a light EEVO + lemon juice dressing and a bit of salt and pepper to round it out! This recipe is ready, start to finish, in about 30 minutes, and is ready for eating IMMEDIATELY! So snack on salad for breakfast- this salad isn't the whimpy green salad your taste buds are expecting. And I promise, it'll hold you over 'till lunch.
3 cups cooked quinoa (we used red quinoa, use what you prefer)
1 heaping cup of cherry or pear tomatoes, halved
1 cup cucumber, sliced & chopped 1/2 cup radishes, diced
1/2 cup green onions, thinly sliced
1/4 cup chopped parsley
1/4 cup chopped basil
2 lemons, freshly squeezed (about 1/3 -1/2 cup juice)
2-4 tablespoons olive oil
salt & pepper to taste
1 cup vegan cheeze crumbles (we used Teese Mozzarella!)
Cook quinoa according to package instructions. (Normally 1 cup quinoa + 1 1/2 cups water, bring to boil, simmer till water is absorbed.) Set aside to let cool completely before mixing in veggies.
Once cooled, toss in tomatoes, cucumbers, radishes, green onions, parsley, basil, lemon juice, & olive oil. Toss to combine. Season with salt & pepper to taste. Add in cheeze crumbles and toss gently to incorporate. Refrigerate until serving, makes 8 servings. Leftovers save well in a sealed container for 3-4 days. Enjoy!
It's been warm and sunny here in Southern California (surprise, surprise), and our tomato plants are EXPLODING! We're growing 4 different varieties and picking anywhere from 4 to 20 tomatoes a day. It's a good thing we like 'em! We've been making bruschetta, soup, and eating 'em raw with a little olive oil and salt, but this sandwich may be my new favorite way. The best part? You can spread it with your very own, super simple, homemade vegan cheeze! And now you'll have a quick recipe anytime you want spreadable vegan cheese. Don't have cashews? Use any nut you have on hand; fun flavors abound from brazil nuts, macadamias, and pine nuts as well! Keep it gluten-free with gluten-free bread or sub in hearty portobellos for a bread-less alternative. But use three slices anyway- the triple-decker-ness is the best part!
INGREDIENTS: For Cheeze:
1 cup cashews, soaked
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 clove garlic
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2-4 tablespoons water
1 medium sized tomato, sliced OR 12ish cherry tomatoes, halved
1/4 cup fresh basil, roughly chopped
sprinkle of freshly ground black pepper
3 slices of bread (GF is that's your jam)
To make the cheeze, combine cashews, lemon juice, garlic, salt, pepper, and water in a food processor and mix until smooth. Scoop out, set aside.
Cut your tomatoes and basil, and set aside. Warm up your panini press (or just a greased pan on the stove). Assemble sandwich beginning with a slice of bread, a generous layer of your homemade cheeze, tomato slices, basil, and a sprinkle of pepper. Top with the next slice of bread, and repeat. Spread the final slice of bread with another thin layer of cheeze before topping the sandwich. Place in panini press until golden lines form and cheeze is melty, or grill until golden and crispy on both sides. If you prefer a crunchier sandwich (Alex does), consider toasting your middle slice before adding it to the sandwich. Enjoy immediately with a frosty bev. (Leftover cheezy spread can be stored in the fridge up to a week.)
Hey, this is Alex, Amber gave me the *nod* to take over this recipe post. I’ll be making Poutine to honor the Stanley Cup Finals. A big fan of hockey, I grew up playing and still coach today. I wanted to make a dish that reminds me of hockey trips to Canada as a kid. After a trip to Vancouver last year coaching a group of 16 year olds, watching them discover and enjoy Poutine, I decided it was something I needed to veganize. Our version is made with crispy baked fries, GF beef-less gravy, and melty squeeky cheeze curds. We're calling it 'Lord Stanley's Vegan Poutine' to honor the man who started it all. Authentic Canadian Poutine, the vegan way.
We love using Teese for this recipe because it crumbles into curds, reminiscent of the white cheddar curds on the original version. Plus, its better on pizza than Daiya (our opinion only), and melts and stretches like the real thing. Sprinkled over the warm gravy, the salty cheeze gets just a little melty and perfect for scooping up with fries, just like it should be.
Warm-Ups (Ingredients): Baked Fries:
2 lbs. Russet potatoes, washed and cut into fries
coconut oil (for greasing the pan & coating fries)
2 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/3 cup vegan butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup gluten-free flour
5-6 cups vegetable or not-beef broth
pepper, to taste
parsley, as garnish
1 cup vegan cheese (We used Teese Mozzarella)
**Traditionally you would used cheddar cheese curds here. A good sharp cheddar nut cheese might be great, too!
Game Time (Directions): 1st Period: Baked Fries
Preheat oven to 475 degrees. Slice potatoes into your desired fry shape and put into a bowl of water. It’s said you should do this for an hour or more, but I did it for about 15 minutes and was happy with the outcome. Lay your fries out on a lightly oiled baking sheet and let bake for 40-50 minutes. Keep an eye on them and pull them out every 10-15 minutes to give them a turn.
2nd Period: Gravy
In a small bowl combine water and cornstarch. Set aside for later.
In a large saucepan, melt vegan butter over medium heat. Once melted, add your GF flour stirring regularly for 5 minutes or so. You want your mixture to be just browning, but keep an eye on it because some GF flours are a dark brown to begin with. Throw in your garlic and let cook for another 30 seconds.
Add broth to the saucepan and combine using a whisk. Bring to a boil and add your cornstarch and water mixture. Simmer for about 5 minutes, or until the sauce thickens, stirring with your whisk regularly. Add pepper and additional salt, if necessary, to taste.
3rd Period: Put It All Together Throw your fries in a large bowl. Salt fries to taste while still warm. Add a ladle of hot gravy to the bowl and toss the fries using tongs. Add more gravy and toss until a majority of fries are covered.
Add your choice of cheeze to the hot fry/gravy mixture and toss again. Top with freshly cracked pepper and a sprinkle of parsley, serve immediately. **Stick Taps**
Okay, we're doing it again. Getting a little splurgy, right? Well, when you want to be the vegan hostess with the mostest, somtimes you've gotta pull out all the stops! This is a 'WOW' appetizer. I mean it! Your friends will be impressed. It takes a little prep time, but takes a classically bad-for-you appetizer and makes it better for you, vegan, and full of gooey, melty cheese. YUM. They're perfect for Sunday sports games, upcoming Cinco de Mayo, and finger food for dinner parties.
I was inspired by a hormonal craving for spicy, fried food (surprise, surprise), and was so incredibly pleased with the results. We used a similar flax wash/ breading recipe as we did in our Crispy Cauliflower Nuggets, and kept it gluten-free with GF breadcrumbs...but you can use whatever you want/ have on hand. I'm betting using panko here would be pretty delicious, too. Plus they're baked, so you get to feel much better about mowing them than if they were fried. Enough talk, I'm getting hungry again. Let's eat!
10-12 medium sized jalapeno peppers, washed
3/4 - 1 cup vegan cheese (we used Daiya Pepperjack cheese)
1/4 cup ground flax
1/4 cup almond meal
3/4 cup warm water
1 1/2 cups bread crumbs (GF or regular)
1/4 cup almond meal
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon cumin
Cilantro Lime Mayo Dip:
1/2 cup vegan mayo
1-2 tablespoons chopped cilantro, to taste
1 lime, squeezed (about 2 tablespoons of juice)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Wash jalapenos and pat dry. Using a small sharp knife, cut off the very top of the pepper (where the stem is). Set aside, and use the knife to de-seed the pepper. Try not to cut into the actual pepper as this will be holding all the melty, gooey cheese later. Repeat with all the jalapenos until each has been de-seeded. Fill each pepper with about a tablespoon of cheese each, not packing them completely full. Using toothpicks, attach the stemmed cap of the pepper back onto it, pushing the toothpick into the jalapenos flesh to hold the pieces together. Lay on their sides until breading is ready.
To prepare the flax wash combine the ground flax, almond meal, and warm water. Whisk together and set aside to thicken.
To prepare the breading mixture, mix in a large bowl the breadcrumbs, almond meal, nutritional yeast, garlic salt, smoked paprika, and cumin until combined.
To ready the cilantro lime mayo, simple mix together the lime, chopped cilantro, and lime juice. Refrigerate until ready to use.
Once all the steps are ready, dip the cheese-filled jalapenos into the flax wash, using a spoon to help evenly coat the pepper. Next dip the peppers into the breadcrumb mixture, rolling them so they are evenly coated. Be gentle, as you want the toothpick-attached tops to stay where they are. Once coated in breadcrumbs, lay peppers onto a waxed papered or lightly greased baking sheet. Repeat until all peppers are coated & breaded.
Bake stuffed, coated pepper poppers for 30 minutes, until peppers soften and cheese melts. Remove from oven & serve with your chilled Cilantro Lime Mayo to balance out the spiciness. Enjoy!
Note: If they don't all get eaten, feel free to reheat later for 10 minutes in a 350 degree oven. Be warned: they are best eaten sooner than later & reheating is probably best done only once.
More cauliflower? YES!! Because its still the Year of the Cauliflower (all year long!), and I had a serious cheeze craving. And who doesn't love a good batch of vegan nachos, anyway? This deliciously cheezy sauce started as an attempt to use up the rest of the cauliflower left over after the Kung Pao Cauliflower recipe and turned into 2 more heads of cauliflower worth of recipe testing, but I am SO EXCITED to share this one with you. In my (clearly humble) opinion, this is the BEST knock-off queso I have EVER eaten. Its spicy, full of flavor, and tastes like the real thing! Its even mimics the texture almost exactly, without any weird stabilizers. Plus, its a nacho topper you can feel pretty good about, being that its made from cauliflower. But trust me, if you don't tell anyone, they would never know. Top it with a sprinkle of red pepper flakes or cilantro and serve on homemade nachos, burritos, and enchiladas. Its great warmed up but pretty darn good straight out of the fridge, too!
1 tablespoon coconut oil
2 heaping cups cauliflower florets (about 1/2 head of cauliflower)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium onion, chopped
1-12 ounce jar roasted red peppers, drained
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon white miso (or any color, but I prefer the tanginess of a lighter, sweeter miso)
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
2 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt
In a medium sized frying pan, begin to melt the tablespoon of coconut oil. Add in the cauliflower, garlic, and chopped onions. Cover and cook on medium heat, stirring occasionally and cook until onions turn glassy and cauliflower begins to brown, about 8-12 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside to slightly cool.
While the veggies are cooling, pull out a high speed blender or food processor (we used our Vitamix), and toss in all the other ingredients- from the roasted red peppers to the salt. Mix them on high for about a minute, just combining them. Add in slightly cooled veggies and blend or process on high for 20 seconds to 2 minutes, depending on the strength of your machine. You want everything to be completely blended, so you're left with a pourable, dippable queso cheeze. Once finished, move the queso to a bowl and serve with chips or over your favorite Mexican dishes.
Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to two weeks, or freeze. To reheat, pour into a saucepan and cook on low, stirring frequently, until heated through. Makes 4(ish) cups.
Spinach & Wild Mushroom Lasagna with Basil Almond Cream
On weeks I work a lot, I like to make giant pots full of something to bring for lunch all week. I like it full of protein to keep me from snacking, be easy to reheat if I get the chance, and if not- taste good enough cold to enjoy. After weeks of chili and potato based soups, I was craving something a little different. With plenty of dehydrated mushrooms from late summer gathering and lots of fresh spinach in the fridge, I got to work using up those GF lasagna noodles I picked up so long ago. We were pleasantly surprised with the amount of flavor in this dish, and loved the almost meaty texture of the mushrooms. Topped with a little homemade parmesan cheeze, it was a serious treat as leftovers for three days before we'd gobbled up the whole pan. And don't worry- we give instructions for regular 'boil' noodles and the often criticized (but equally delicious in our opinion) 'no-boil' noodles. Let's eat!
Basil Almond Cream Sauce:
1 cup soaked almonds
2 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
3 tablespoons dried basil OR a heaping 1/2 cup fresh basil
1 cup water
Soak 1 cup almonds in warm water for at least an hour. Drain the almonds, set aside, and save 1 cup of the soaking water for blending.
Combine all ingredients in a high-speed blender or food processor until a creamy consistency is reached, about 30 seconds to a minute. Scoop into a bowl and set aside to use later in the lasagna.
Spinach & Wild Mushroom Lasagna:
1 box (about 9 ounces) gluten-free no-boil lasagna noodles*
25-30 ounces of pasta sauce (about 3+ cups)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large yellow onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1.5 ounces of dried, wild mushrooms OR 8 ounces fresh wild mushrooms, roughly chopped**
4 packed cups fresh spinach
1/4 cup water
1 tablespoon dried oregano
salt & pepper to taste
1/2 recipe vegan parmesan cheeze OR about 1/2 cup of your favorite parmesan substitute
*If using noodles that require boiling, cook to instructions on package, drain, and use in place of the noodles in our recipe. Also, remove about 10-15 minutes earlier than the total cook time of about 45 minutes that ours requires.
**You can use your favorite mushrooms from the grocery store, too. Button, cremini, and chanterelles would all be great here.
If you haven't already made the Basil Almond Cream Sauce, do that (recipe above.) If you have, start here:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees and lightly grease a 9 x 13 in. baking dish.
Heat olive oil in a large, deep skillet and toss in onions and garlic, and cook until onions are softened and turning slightly translucent. Add mushrooms, water, and spinach by the handful, stirring to wilt spinach and help mushrooms absorb the water. Cover with a lid and let simmer, stirring occasionally, for about 5-8 minutes or until spinach is wilted and mushrooms have absorbed all the liquid and onions are beginning to caramelize. Add in spices and simmer one more minute. Remove from heat and set aside.
Now, pull out that lightly greased casserole dish and spread about 1 cup of pasta sauce across the bottom. Top with noodles, about 4 per layer, spread evenly across and covering the sauce. Next spread about 1/2 of the Basil Almond Cream across the noodles, top with half of the spinach & mushroom mixture, sauce, and more noodles. Do another round of Basil Almond Cream, cooked veggies, and noodles, saving the last of the sauce to cover the top layer of noodles and prevent them from burning. Finally, sprinkle the top with your parmesan cheese, cover with a lid or aluminum foil, and bake for 45-50 minutes, until sauce is bubbling and cheese is slightly browned. Let cool, slice, and enjoy! Saves well in the fridge for about a week.
I've been trying to find a nice replacement for store-bought Parmesan for a while now. Its pretty expensive, and while it can be surprisingly realistic in flavor, its also got some pretty wonky ingredients. Tricalcium Phosphate, anyone? So I started down the "make your own" route. One of the questions I'm most often asked is how to replace the nuts in a recipe. Turns out a lot of people are allergic! And we vegans really love our cashews for creaminess, almonds for smoothness, and macademia nuts for flavor. So no nuts here, because we want everyone to enjoy this.
After much trial and error, we finally found a texture we liked to match the salty, tangy flavor of parmesan we've all come to love...and miss. We hope you like it, too.
1/4 cup miso*
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1/2 cup sesame seeds
1/4 tsp garlic salt
1/4 tsp black truffle sea salt (or 1/4 tsp extra garlic salt)
1/4 tsp dried oregano**
1/4 tsp dried thyme**
*You can use light or dark here. Light will have a slightly sweeter flavor, dark saltier. If you DO use dark miso, reduce the salt amount by half.
**Get creative. Try adding different herbs to suit you, or something funky like a little curry powder or smoked paprika.
Directions: Place all ingredients into a small mixing bowl and use a fork to mix everything together until completely combined. Mixture will be a little sticky.Taste-test to make sure its to your standard of tangy, salty parmesan. Eat!
Can be sprinkled on pasta, over soups, and even on pizza! Makes about a cup of cheeze. Stores well in a sealed container in the fridge for about 2 weeks.