Vegan Food Hacks
What could be better than a comforting casserole at the end of a long, busy day? A comforting casserole that takes almost not time to prepare, like our Baked Polenta Casserole with Zucchini and Spinach, that’s what! And while it’s in the oven, all you need to do is kick back, because bagged fresh broccoli slaw and fresh bread complete a full dinner with no extra work.
The casserole is made up of layers of prepared polenta, the kind that comes in a tube, zucchini, and baby spinach. It’s smothered in marinara sauce and topped with melty vegan cheese, resulting in a crowd-pleasing, family-friendly main dish. Lots of casseroles need prep of the various components, but this one requires only minimal hands-on time. Use a really flavorful prepared marinara— roasted tomato, garlic, mushroom, or chunky vegetable. more→
It can be fun to make tasty spreads when the mood strikes, but sometimes that mood doesn’t. That’s when these delicious ready-to-eat vegan spreads come in handy. Just add fresh bread, whole-grain crackers, or healthy chips. Here, we’re going to sample sesame spreads, artichoke pesto, vegan cream cheese, vegan butter, and guacamole. more→
This easy baked polenta casserole uses prepared polenta (the kind that comes in a tube) layered with zucchini and spinach. Smothered in marinara sauce and topped with melty vegan cheese, it’s almost so embarrassingly easy to make, but such a crowd-pleaser. Use a really flavorful prepared marinara—roasted tomato, garlic, mushroom, or chunky vegetable. Adapted from Vegan Express by Nava Atlas. more→
When you have a delicious, nourishing (and quick) dish like Salsa Verde Quinoa Pilaf as the centerpiece of a dinner plate, the rest of the meal comes together quickly. Here, we’ve completed the veg-centric meal with a late spring flavor, though it can be enjoyed almost any time of year.
Asparagus used to be a sign of spring; and though it’s a little less special now that it’s available nearly throughout the year, we won’t complain; it’s a veggie that doesn’t need chopping or prep (other than a little trim off the bottom), and that’s always a good thing. more→
Finally, an easy wholesome raw brownies recipe that tastes like real brownies! Nuts, dates, coconut, cocoa powder, maple syrup, and salt combine to create a shockingly divine traditional-style brownie. Although the ingredients sound virtuous (and they are), your taste buds will only register one flavor: chocolate. It’s the most popular recipe on Laura-Jane’s blog, probably because it’s so quick, decadent, and nutritious.
Famous Raw Brownies keep extremely well in the fridge, and they are perfect for making ahead and bringing to a potluck or work function. The brownies stand on their own, but they’re even better with the Velvet Chocolate Icing (of course!), which is my go-to chocolate icing for any refrigerated dessert recipe, including cakes and bars. It’s easy to make, easy to spread, and extremely versatile. Iced desserts should be kept in the refrigerator. The flavors also pair beautifully with fresh blackberries or raspberries. more→
In this simple quinoa pilaf, salsa verde (tomatillo salsa) makes a bold flavor statement. If you’ve never used it before, this green salsa variety is shelved along with the standard kinds. It has a somewhat smoky flavor that adds a distinctive character to dishes, and of course, it’s also perfect as a dip for tortilla chips. Just 5 ingredients (not counting salt and pepper) add up to a super tasty quinoa dish! more→
If you like artichokes, you’ll love this tangy vegan sour cream artichoke dip. And being to make it in 5 minutes flat makes it even more appealing. We used Follow Your Heart vegan sour cream, but you can use any brand your natural foods store carries. (when you have more than 5 minutes to spare until snack time, there’s also a link to a recipe for homemade vegan sour cream in the ingredient list). Serve with veggie chips, tortilla chips, or raw vegetables. more→
Whether you enjoy this vegan batter-dipped cauliflower as a simple side dish or a veggie-based snack, you’ll find them completely addictive! And because we’re all about easy here at Vegan Food Hacks, we start with a bag of frozen cauliflower. Kids and adults — even picky ones — often approve of cauliflower. And what about the egg batter usually used to make this kind of recipe? A chickpea flour batter is the perfect swap.
Fresh cauliflower is great, but sometimes you don’t feel like dealing with the mess required to chop it down into cute little florets. No worries, frozen cauliflower may not be as good as fresh, but it does retain most of the nutrients, and is already in perfect-sized pieces for this recipe. more→
This quinoa bowl recipe is quick, colorful, and an easy way to get your plant-powered protein in a one-dish meal. And while it looks like there’s a bit of prep involved, that’s not the case at all! The only cutting involved is the bell pepper. If you’re really slothful, well-stocked supermarkets sell cut bell pepper. But really, you can do this.
Grating carrots isn’t much fun, though, so we’ll use pre-grated, which are easy to find. The edamame and cashews add even more heft to quinoa’s already impressive protein profile. The only task you’ve got is to arrange the toppings artfully over cooked quinoa, then pass around the flavorful dressing. more→
If you’re vegan, you need to know that miso soup served in a Japanese eateries is often made with fish stock, so do ask when ordering. It’s a warming treat that’s a shame to miss, it’s nice to know that making traditional-style miso soup at home (minus the fish) is quite easy. Lately, though, I’m not fond of what combo (a sea vegetable) does for the soup. It has a fishy flavor (after all, it comes from the ocean), a weird slippery texture, and it’s expensive. Fortunately, this vegan miso soup presented here is just as good without it.
Like its more traditional counterpart, it’s incredibly easy to make and cooks up in minutes. The green leafy aspect of the kombu is replaced with dark green lettuce leaves. more→
Chinese-Style Cauliflower Fried Rice served with Simple Sweet and Savory Sautéed Tofu makes a tasty vegan dinner menu, filled with healthy shortcuts.Those of you who follow Vegan Food Hacks know that we’re big fans of cauliflower “rice.” So many of you liked the cauliflower fried rice recipe we shared recently that we decided to build a meal around it.
What this meal needs is a tasty protein dish, and for that we suggest a simple sweet and savory sautéed tofu preparation. You can substitute tempeh or seitan for this as well. Our dishes are nothing if not flexible. more→
Let’s say you’re not much of a baker or cook, but you want to make an impressive treat for a special person — say, your sweetie for Valentine’s Day or a birthday, or mom for Mother’s Day. These tiny sweet vegan tartlets are delectable, yet incredibly easy to make. Hannah Kaminsky presents four creative ways to fill these little beauties — as well as the tempting photos that go with them.
The mini fillo shells are vegan (and Kosher) are available in the frozen foods section of well-stocked supermarkets. You’ll find them near other fillo products, and items like puff pastry. The package directions say that once thawed, these are rebaked and ready to use, but also recommend heating them before filling, for extra crispness. Follow package directions, either way. more→