Healthy Kitchen

12 Vegan Emergency Dinners for Your Busiest Days

Vegan pizzadillas

We all have nights when even the thought of making a last-minute dinner is exhausting, but the idea of blowing our food and calorie budget by eating out (yet again) is even less appealing. Everyone needs a stash of emergency dinner options — meals that can be made in minutes with minimal or no cooking, and appeal to most any palate. Some of the 12 meals here are simple recipes to build a meal around; others are just meal ideas that come together quickly with convenient ingredients you pick up at the store on your way home from work. All of these meals can be completed with a colorful salad, and in keeping with the “emergency” theme, you can use veggies that need no prepping and cutting, including baby greens, baby spinach, pre-shredded carrots, cherry tomatoes, and the like. more→

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Make the Most of Produce Shopping at Farm Markets

Peaches at Market

The sights and aromas of common and offbeat varieties of vegetables and fruits are truly inspiring as you browse the aisles of farm markets. Often, there are samplings, food demos, and even music, so your shopping trip becomes more of a fun outing than a mere errand. The experience can be a great one for kids, helping them make the connection between the food they (hopefully) eat and the people who grow it. Just-harvested farm market fare — that hasn’t been trucked across the country — is at its peak of flavor and nutrition. Here are a few tips for making the most of your farm market shopping expeditions, adapted from Plant Power by Nava Atlas (HarperOne, ©2014, reprinted by permission). Photos by Hannah Kaminsky. more→

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Top Five Tips for Vegan-Ease Cuisine

Vegan Lime muffins

Here are five great tips for starting on the path to Vegan-Ease cuisine, and enjoying easy plant-based meals, without sacrificing great taste or giving up the textures and flavors we all love! Contributed by Laura Theodore, from Vegan-Ease: An Easy Guide to Enjoying a Plant-Based Diet* (October 8, 2015). Published by Jazzy Vegetarian LLC, © 2015, reprinted by permission. more→

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12 High-Protein Vegan Main Dishes Featuring Tempeh

Tangy Tempeh with Portobella

Tempeh is a fermented soyfood,and like its culinary cousin tofu is quite versatile, but has a more distinct flavor as well as a dense, chewy texture. Though somewhat of an acquired taste, it’s one worth cultivating — tempeh is high in complete protein and rich in all kinds of nutrients perfect for the plant based diet. Learn more in this informative post on tempeh.  Let’s get cooking with it, starting with Tangy Tempeh with Portobello Mushrooms (above). It has a “meaty” heartiness, with balsamic vinegar providing a bit of tang. Serve this sumptuous stew-like dish over a cooked grain or on pasta. more→

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8 Tasty Vegan Salad Dressings

Vegan ranch dressing with raw veggies

If you’re a fan of salads, you’ll love this handy ways to make them even better with dressings that are dairy-free, full of flavor, and in many cases, low in fat. Best of all, you can make them at home in minutes. And if almost goes without saying that they’re more economical than store-bought dressing. First up, Vegan Ranch Dressing, above, is one that’s almost impossible to find ready-made in a dairy-free vegan version. As a dip, this is great with raw veggies; as a dressing, use on green salads, slaws, pasta salads, and potato salads. more→

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Pineapple Recipes — Sweet and Savory

Pineapple salsa recipe

Sweet and juicy, with a flavor like sunshine, pineapple is a fruit that’s amazingly versatile, delicious in savory dishes as well as sweet ones. While you can always use canned, unsweetened pineapple, consider using it fresh. It might look a bit intimidating with its bumpy skin and imposing crown, but once you get the hang of it, it’s not too big a job, especially if you follow our guide on How to Cut a Fresh Pineapple. Meanwhile, here’s our array of recipes to inspire you to use more of this vitamin-packed fruit:  more→

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How to Cut a Fresh Pineapple

How to cut fresh pineapple

Don’t be intimidated by fresh pineapples! They might look daunting at first, but once you get the hang of it, it’s easy to cut, and so amazing to eat. Time was when fresh pineapple was mainly a winter fruit, but like a lot of produce it is now available year-round. Pineapple still seems more fitting to augment the dearth of fruit choices in the winter, but it’s still welcome in the summer, when it brightens fruit salads, and is delicious grilled! One you get the hang of this, you’ll want to explore our array of Pineapple Recipes — Sweet and Savory. Let’s get started …

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August 2015 Produce Picks: 5 Fruits and Veggies to Use Now

Buy local tomatoes

Tomatoes – August is all about tomatoes, as they never taste better than they do this month. Enjoy luscious late summer tomatoes to their fullest by exploring what VegKitchen has to offer. Fresh salsas, salads pastas, cold soups, sauces, pizzas and much more are better with summer tomatoes and these ideas are at your fingertips: more→

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