Pumpkin Spice Pancakes

Pumpkin Spice Pancakes
Pumpkin Spice Pancakes

I have been in a pumpkin mood because, you know, fall. Also, it is a super easy ingredient to add to most anything and goes with my theme of veggies in everything! These pancakes are particularly good. My daughter loves them, and one of her friends calls them “cookies”. I always make a big batch and use leftovers for snacks. My daughter and her friend will sit on a park bench together eating these pancakes cold and going “mmhhmm”. It’s pretty rewarding, as you know, a toddler will never hide their feelings about food.

These pancakes are spiced for fall, light,  fluffy, and totally delicious. They could easily be made vegan with and egg substitute of your choice and non-dairy milk and yogurt.


  • 1 small banana
  • 1 cup pumpkin
  • 2 eggs or egg substitute
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups spelt or whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp each ginger and cloves
  • dash of nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt -nondairy is fine
  • 1/2 cup milk – nondairy is fine


  1. Mash banana in a medium bowl with the pumpkin puree.
  2. Add eggs and vanilla whisking to combine.
  3. Add flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, spices, yogurt, and milk and stir together. If mixture needs more liquid add it to your desired consistency. Thicker batter makes thicker pancakes, thinner batter makes thinner pancakes.
  4. Heat a large skillet, I use my biggest cast iron pan, over medium heat.
  5. Once pan is hot add a small amount of oil to prevent pancakes from sticking.
  6. Pour batter into the pan making sure to leave enough room between the pancakes to flip them!
  7. Cook on first side until bubbles that form on pancakes burst and edges start to dry out.
  8. Flip and cook until golden brown on second side.
  9. Serve hot.

Pumpkin Zucchini Oatmeal – Toddler Breakfast

Pumpkin Zucchini Oatmeal
Pumpkin Zucchini Oatmeal

My sweet toddler continues to eat most of her vegetables in things, primarily oatmeal and scrambled tofu, her two favorites. I used to make only her superfood oatmeal because that is all she would eat, now we are branching out to keep things fresh. This oatmeal is backed with veggies, and tastes just a bit sweet from the dates, with hints of fall with the pumpkin and cinnamon.

We, of course, have to serve oatmeal in the “fish” bowl. It just doesn’t taste as good otherwise.

This recipe makes A LOT of oatmeal. She eats a ton! For most people I would say this would serve 4.


  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup grated zucchini
  • 2 medjool dates, finely minced
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 TBL hemp seeds (optional)
  • 2 TBL flax seeds (optional) cup chopped nuts or seeds (toasted if you desire)


  1. Combine the water, zucchini, dates, and salt in a small saucepan. Cover and bring to a boil.
  2. Once the water is boiling add rolled oats, pumpkin, cinnamon, and hemp seeds if using, and cook stirring occasionally until water is absorbed, about 5-7 minutes.
  3. Once oatmeal is cooked remove from heat and stir in flax seeds if using.
  4. I serve as is to my toddler, and add a touch of maple syrup to my bowl.


Vegan Slow Cooker Carrot Cake and Zucchini Bread Oatmeal

Vegan Slow Cooker Carrot Cake and Zucchini Bread Oatmeal
Vegan Slow Cooker Carrot Cake and Zucchini Bread Oatmeal

More vegetables for breakfast?! Well, yes. And it’s vegan and gluten free. This recipe is one that I found before children from the cookbook “The Vegan Slow Cooker” It is a lovely way to mix in some vegetables for breakfast, and it tastes delicious! It’s also perfect for when you have overnight guests, or know you will have a rushed morning. It smells wonderful and is done by the time you get up in the morning. Yes, my toddler loved this!

You don’t have to sweeten this at all, and can add what you like for toppings just before serving. Nuts, fruit, milk, sweetener, anything that sounds good will be a lovely addition.

Originally from The Vegan Slow Cooker


  • 1 cup steal cut oats (certified gluten free if necessary)
  • 2 cups non-dairy milk
  • 1 cup coconut water, or more non-dairy milk
  • 3 small carrot, grated
  • 1/2 medium zucchini, grated
  • pinch of salt
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • pinch of ground cloves
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1-2 TBL brown sugar or maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans (optional)


  1. Combine everything except the pecans in the crock of your slow cooker.
  2. Stir briefly and cook on low 6-8 hours (overnight).
  3. In the morning stir in the chopped pecans and whatever else your heart desires.

Additional notes

You can use all carrots, or all zucchini.

Vegan, Gluten-Free, Veggie-full Cashew Mac and “Cheese”

vegan gluten free mac n cheese
vegan gluten free mac n cheese

Here is traditional “kid food” made in a way I am comfortable serving it to my daughter. I use the gluten free noodles simply because it is a way to get different grains into her diet and the brand I choose is nutritionally dense compared to traditional dried pasta. I also add in some grated zucchini because the texture fits right in. The sauce is vegetables and nuts. How awesome is that?! Again, nutritionally dense, and very yummy. My husband and I love this mac and cheese. It tastes very similar to my other vegan mac n cheese  but uses a few different ingredients to keep it gluten free.


  • 8-10 oz gluten free pasta
  • 1 cup grated zucchini
  • 3/4 cup peeled and cubed russet potato (1 small)
  • 2 TBL sliced carrot (1 very small)
  • 1 tsp white vinegar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup raw cashews
  • 3/4-1 cup reserved cooking water
  • 2 TBL nutritional yeast
  • 2 TBL tahini
  • 1 1/2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1 1/2 tsp tomato paste
  • additional salt to taste


  1. Cook pasta according to package directions.
  2. During the last minute of cooking throw in the zucchini to soften it before draining everything together.
  3. Meanwhile:
  4. Place potato and carrot in a small saucepan and cover with cold water.
  5. Add the vinegar and 1 tsp salt to water, bring everything to a boil partially covered, and boil for about 10 minutes.
  6. Add the cashews and continue to cook until the potatoes and carrots are completely tender, about 5 minutes more. They are done when they slide off a fork that is inserted into a piece of potato or carrot.
  7. Drain potatoes and carrots reserving at least 3/4 cup of the cooking water.
  8. Transfer potatoes, carrots, cashew, and 3/4 cup cooking water to a blender.
  9. Add nutritional yeast, tahini, mustard, and tomato paste and blend until smooth.
  10. Taste, and adjust salt as needed.

Banana Zucchini Baked Oatmeal Muffins

Adapted from www.hummusapien.com

Makes 12 servings


  • 2 tbsp ground flaxseed or chia seeds + 6 tbsp water (alternatively, you can use 2 eggs)
  • 2 medium to large over-ripe bananas
  • 2 small zucchini, grated (don’t squeeze water out)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp salt


  1. Preheat oven to 375F. Spray a muffin tin with cooking spray or grease with coconut oil.
  2. Place flax and water in small bowl. Stir and set aside to “gel.”
  3. Place bananas in a large bowl and mash with a fork. Add grated zucchini, vanilla extract, and flax mixture, stirring to combine.
  4. Add oats, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt, Stir until just combined.
  5. Spoon mixture into muffin cups, filling nearly to the top.
  6. Bake for 18-22 minutes until golden brown and dry on top.
  7. Store cooled oatmeal cups in an air-tight container in the refrigerator. These freeze well, too!

Pacific Rim Vegetable Kabobs (vegan optional)

Pacific Rim Kabobs
Pacific Rim Kabobs

These Kabobs will fulfill all your grilled vegetable dreams. They are herbaceous, savory, bring umami, acid, salt, and even sweet tastes to your palate. You can, of course, choose the vegetables you like the best. Personally I would be perfectly happy with just tofu, mushrooms, and onions served with a green salad on the side. Perfection.

These can be a side dish, or an entree. I love to make these when we BBQ with friends. They eat them as a side, and I have a entree I adore.


For the Marinade
  • 1 stalk fresh lemon grass, roughly chopped
  • 7 cloves fresh garlic
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro
  • 6 scallions, roughly chopped
  • 2 TBL natural peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • juice of 2 small limes, about 1/4 cup
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened plain yogurt (non-dairy or dairy)
  • 1/4 cup tamari
For Tofu
  • 2 TBL olive oil
  • 1 lb extra firm tofu cut into 1″ cubes
For the Vegetables
  • 8 oz white button mushrooms, halved
  • 1 medium onion cut into 1″ pieces
  • 8 oz cherry tomatoes
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into 1″ pieces
  • 1 medium zucchini or yellow squash, cut into rounds


  1. Combine all ingredients for the marinade in a blender and blend until smooth.
  2. Heat a large skillet over medium high heat for the tofu.
  3. Once skillet is hot add the oil, swirl to coat the bottom of the pan, and add the cubed tofu.
  4. Cook on the first side until golden grown, about 3 minutes.
  5. Flip tofu and cook, turning occasionally until all sides are golden brown.
  6. Toss tofu into a large container.
  7. Add all the cut vegetables into the same container as the tofu and top with the marinade.
  8. Stir tofu and vegetables to fully coat with marinade.
  9. Let everything sit for 4-6 hours.
  10. Once marinated use bamboo skewers that have been soaked for at least 20 minutes and skewer vegetables and tofu alternating vegetables to create beauty.
  11. Grill over an outdoor grill preheated to medium high, turning occasionally until slightly charred in places. This will take 10-15 minutes.
  12. Baste with leftover marinade as desired, and at the end of cooking.
  13. Serve hot, at room temperature, or cold as leftovers if there are any.


Mustgo Fried Rice with Sweet Chili “Chicken”

Fried Rice with Sweet Chili "Chicken"
Fried Rice with Sweet Chili “Chicken”

Mustgo is my favorite thing to eat. You know, this must go, that must go. I have a few meals in my collection that really don’t have much of a recipe because it changes depending on the odds and ends I have in my fridge. This is one of those. Requirements are some sort of leftover grain, I do prefer rice. Some vegetables, and, to really make it a meal a bit of vegan chicken and sweet chili sauce. This is one of my pregnancy cravings for sure. I think I made it every week for a month straight and ate it two meals a day until it was gone. Just thinking about it I feel like I should run out and get some Trader Joe’s Chicken-less strips and make it for dinner. I do make the fried rice part a lot without the chicken, but it really takes it to a new level.

I have to thank my friend Tatum for this idea as it was something she introduced to me back in grad school. The chili-vegan chicken part that is.


  • Olive oil for cooking
  • 2 cups chopped vegetables of choice
  • I like onions, mushrooms, zucchini, some type of green such as kale, chard, or dandelion greens, or whatever I need to use up from the fridge)
  • 2 cups cooked brown rice, or mixture of brown rice and lentils
  • 2 TBL olive
  • 1 TBL tamari or soy sauce
  • salt to taste
  • juice from half a lemon (optional but recommended)
  • 1 8 oz package vegan chicken strips. I like Trader Joe’s Chicken-less strips
  • 1/3 cup sweet chili sauce. I pick mine up at the Asian grocery store, but there is often a version in the international food isle of most large grocery stores. Check to make sure it is free of dyes and anything else you are avoiding


  1. Heat a large skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add a little oil, and whatever vegetables you like to cook the longest (onions for me), saute a few minutes, then add the next (mushrooms, zucchini, and greens). Cook until just tender.
  3. Meanwhile, heat a smaller skillet over medium heat.
  4. Add a little oil and the vegan chicken cooking, stirring frequently, until browned (3 -5 minutes).
  5. Turn off the heat, drizzle with sweet chili sauce, and stir to coat the “chicken”.
  6. Add rice to the cooked vegetables and cook a bit more to heat the rice through.
  7. Drizzle with 2 TBL olive oil, the tamari, a little salt, and the lemon juice, stirring to combine.
  8. Taste and adjust salt as needed.
  9. Top with cooked chili “chicken” and enjoy!

Refined Sugar Free Cinnamon Muffins + Vegan 4th of July Ideas

Makes number of servings (yield): 12 muffins


  • 1/2 cup unbleached flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup oat flour (I ground rolled oats into flour)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup nondairy milk
  • 2 TBL aquafaba (liqid from a can of beans- Garbonzo, white, black, pinto, whatever)
  • 1/2 a large very ripe banana, mashed
  • 2 TBL coconut oil
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup


  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Spray muffin tin with non-stick spray.
  2. Mix together dry ingredients (flour through cinnamon) in a large bowl.
  3. Mix the apple cider vinegar and nondairy milk and set aside for a few minutes.
  4. In a small bowl whisk the aquafaba until just foamy, about 30 seconds.
  5. Add aquafaba, mashed banana, coconut oil, vanilla, maple syrup, and milk/vinegar mixture to the dry ingredients and mix until just combined.
  6. Divide batter evenly into 12 prepared muffin cups.
  7. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. Cool for a few minutes before serving.

Quinoa Black Bean Bowl with Tahini Dressing- Power Bowl Without a Recipe

Quinoa Black Bean Bowl with Tahini Dressing
Quinoa Black Bean Bowl with Tahini Dressing

Power bowls are trendy. I love being trendy, so here is my version of a power bowl, and a few tips on how to make your own without a recipe.

This version of a power bowl is one of my favorite go-to meals when we have just about nothing in the house, or I don’t feel like cooking. It is perfectly healthy so you can feel virtuous eating it, then maybe finish with ice cream so you don’t get too high and mighty.

This is a perfect mix and match without a recipe recipe. Just use whatever you have around. I love quinoa in this, especially when cooked in mushroom broth, but any grain will do. Same for the greens. Whatever you have hanging around that you like in a salad will be good here. Beans are nice for a touch more texture and protein, but are optional. Any vegetable combination is good for the sauteed vegetables. I love the tahini dressing just because it adds hints of bitterness and acid to the finished product, but hey, if you have some dressing hanging out, just use it. Really, just throw whatever you have in a bowl or on a plate, top it with yummy dressing, call it a bowl and feel super trendy.


Tahini Dressing – Or dressing of choice

  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • water to thin
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • salt to taste
  • 1-2 tsp lemon juice to taste
  • fresh herbs, minced (optional)

Other Ingredients

  • 2-4 cups fresh spinach or salad greens
  • 1-2 cups cooked quinoa – or other cooked whole grain
  • 1/2-1 cup cup cooked black beans – other beans or protein
  • 1-2 cups vegetables. I like a mixture of fresh and sauteed vegetables (In the bowl pictured I used onions, peppers, mushrooms, carrots, zucchini, scallions, and sundried tomatoes)
  • 2 TBL nuts or seeds of your choice (optional)


  1. Make the tahini dressing by whisking the tahini and water together until it has reached your desired consistency. Start with a few teaspoons of water, whisk, and add more until it is how you like it.
  2. Stir in the garlic, salt, lemon juice, and herbs if you are using them.
  3. Divide the rest of the ingredients on two plates. I like to start with spinach, add quinoa, then beans, and finish with veggies.
  4. Drizzle the dressing over the top and you have a super healthy, quick meal.


What is important for successful power bowl?

  1. Various layers of flavor
  2. Different textures
  3. Mix of fresh and cooked ingredients
  4. Protein

How Does It All Work? 

The Flavor

  1. The vegetables and how you choose to cook them will be the base of your flavor profile. You could use fresh, cooked, or a mixture.
  2. I love to have something from all five tastes in my bowls. For this bowl used carrots for sweetness, salt on the sauteed vegetables and cooked beans, umami with mushrooms and by cooking my grains in mushroom broth, bitter in the tahini and acid in the lemon in the tahini dressing.
  3. The dressing you choose will add a ton of flavor to your finished dish. Make sure it is something you like. It can be as simple as a little oil and salt, or go ahead and make the tahini dressing. Use up a bottle from your fridge. It’s your meal, eat what you like.


  1. Every ingredient that you add will have it’s own texture (I hope!).
  2. Use a mixture of chewy (grains), crunchy (fresh vegetables, nut or seeds), soft (beans), and just right (cooked vegetables).
  3. When choosing what to add think of how the textures will balance each other. You don’t want everything to be crunchy or you’ll get sick of chewing. You don’t want it all to be soft because that would be gross. Just a bit of each is nice.

Mix of fresh and cooked ingrediewnts

  1. You could easily use only raw or only cooked ingredients here, I just like to cook my grains and I like some fresh veggies to mix it up.
  2. How you cook things does affect the nutritional value. Having a mixture brings a nice balance to your plate.
  3. Proteins are usually cooked and for a real power bowl you need some protein.


  1. Add some, it’s good for you.
  2. I like beans. I like the texture and the taste. Canned or cooked at home will work. I often make this meal to use up odds and ends and use whatever type I have ready.
  3. If you don’t like beans use something else. Tofu, Seitan, Tempeh, Nuts, Seeds, Fish, Meat. Whatever you like will be perfect.

Vegan Drop Biscuits – Whole Wheat with Veggies

Vegan Drop Biscuits
Vegan Drop Biscuits

I feel as if I am always trying to fit extra nutrients into our food these days. Between making sure Wolfie gets vegetables and whole grains, and that I am eating everything I should to grow a person I’m just putting vegetables in everything! Wolfie has been on a bread kick so I made some biscuits adapting an old recipe with a few extras so I felt ok with her eating these one after another.

As for being biscuits, they’re pretty good. Flaky, a bit buttery, and easy. I like drop biscuits because I don’t want to roll and cut them since I usually just top them with gravy. I take my usual gravy recipe and add cooked lentils to it for a yummy breakfast, or dinner! These are also good topped with jam for a quick snack.


  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 TBL baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup non-hydrogenated vegetable shortening
  • 1/2 cup shredded carrot or zucchini (optional)
  • 1 1/2 cups non-dairy milk


  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Mix dry ingredients in a medium bowl.
  3. Cut in the shortening with a fork.
  4. Mix in shredded carrot if using.
  5. Stir in milk a little at a time until batter is sticky, not runny.
  6. Drop by overflowing spoonfuls onto un-greased cookie sheet.
  7. Bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes until golden brown.