Maca Cacao Hot Chocolate

Maca Cacao Hot Chocolate

Happy December! That feels so weird to say because in Texas it never truly feels like December (and I’m ok with that), but we did wake up to an especially chilly morning the other day. I went downstairs, made my daily ice cold smoothie, and brought it to my desk. I sat here shivering, realizing that I’m doing this late-fall morning thing all wrong.

Since then, I’ve been mixing up this concoction for me and Jack – it’s a healthier hot chocolate than the Swissmiss from the snow days of my childhood. Instead of cocoa, I decided to use a combo of cacao powder and maca powder. Cacao is the most pure form of chocolate and it’s packed with antioxidants, fiber, and magnesium. Maca (powder from the Peruvian maca root) has a malty vanilla flavor and it’s good for fatigue, memory, and a slew of other things.* It offers a little pick me up that’s similar but not as extreme as coffee. Perfect for a little morning boost.

I don’t actually serve this with whipped cream for breakfast, but if you’re making this for dessert go ahead and make it pretty with a dollop coconut whip (recipe below) and shaved chocolte.

Maca Cacao Hot Chocolate

These superfood powders are a bit of an investment, but stored in the fridge they last a really long time. I get mine at my local Whole Foods. They’d be great items to pick up if you’re one of the lucky winners of our gift card giveaway (just a reminder – it closes on Tuesday!).

In addition to our giveaway, Whole Foods is giving away groceries for ONE YEAR as part of their #mytradish program – click here to enter the sweepstakes.

Apple Sage Grilled Cheese

Apple Sage Grilled Cheese

Of course you don’t need a recipe for grilled cheese, but I just HAVE to share this simple combo because it’s so so delicious. This is the sort of thing that I love to make when I don’t feel like spending time in the kitchen but I also don’t feel like leaving the house.

Sweet, soft apples, savory sage, red onion, and a good slather of grainy mustard – all between melty cheese (or vegan cheese) and bread. I think this might be my favorite sandwich assembly to date, I just love the sweet and salty mix. Make these with a bowl of soup and you have perfect week-after-Thanksgiving couch food.

Apple Sage Grilled Cheese

But before you head to the couch – be sure to checkout Monday’s cookbook & grocery giveaway post if you haven’t already!

Apple Sage Grilled Cheese

Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes with Broccoli

Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes with Broccoli

Back in college when I first started incorporating more vegetables in to my life, my go-to vegetable was broccoli. I’d throw it on everything – broccoli on pizza, broccoli in pasta, broccoli stirred into my stir fry. Then one day the world went crazy for kale and I feel like broccoli got left behind. It’s so humble and hearty, yet folks always seem to forget about it. It’s not winning awards for the trendiest vegetable, but who knows/? Maybe 2017 will be its year in the spotlight?

Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes with Broccoli

I love these twice baked sweet potatoes because they’re at least twice as healthy as any version I’ve eaten before. They’re made with nutrient-dense sweet potatoes and stuffed with broccoli. I made a creamy cashew sauce by blending some of the baked sweet potato mash with creamy cashews and rosemary. Before I baked it all, I lightly steamed the broccoli and tossed with lemon, dijon mustard and scallions. More of that creamy sweet potato sauce goes on top.

Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes with Broccoli Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes with Broccoli

This is one of those recipes where the cheese is optional or not optional, depending on your preference. The creamy sweet potato/rosemary cashew filling is so delicious that the cheese isn’t necessary for flavor. But if you ask husband Jack if he wants cheese on anything his answer will always be “yes, please more cheese!”

Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes with Broccoli

Red Curry Kuri Squash Soup

Red Curry Kuri Squash Soup

I had this red kuri squash sitting on my countertop for the longest time. I didn’t really know what to do with it until I picked up some lemongrass from the market and then it hit me – Red Curry Kuri soup! They say “what grows together goes together.” Well in this case, what rhymes together… also works.

Red Curry Kuri Squash Soup

If you can’t find a red kuri squash, you could sub in kabocha squash or butternut squash. If you can’t find lemongrass, use a bit of lime zest here instead. The rest is pretty straight forward and simple – plus this is a no-pot meal (that’s a thing right?), just roast the squash, shallots and garlic in the oven, then blend everything all together.

Red Curry Kuri Squash Soup

This soup is tangy and a little spicy (although you can adjust the spice to your level), and the coconut makes it super creamy. The flavors here are a little less traditional for Thanksgiving, but this can be a bright start to your holiday.

Red Curry Kuri Squash Soup

Vegan Pumpkin Pie Parfaits

Vegan Pumpkin Pie Parfaits

As a kid, my favorite thing about Thanksgiving was hands down, the pumpkin pie. After the turkey was all done and the green bean casserole was divided into tupperware containers, the desserts would come out and my grandpa Donofrio would yell in a high pitched voice “Puuuuuuunkin Pieeeeee!” Always without the “m” sound because that’s the way my sister and I pronounced it back then. Years later, I would learn to prefer apple pie for dessert, but while my grandfather was at the table, his energy for pun-kin pie was infectious and this moment was the highlight of our holiday.

Vegan Pumpkin Pie Parfaits

But here comes the less charming part of the memory: we’d all sit around eating our pie, but my sister and I (being the picky eaters that we were) would scoop out the creamy pumpkin middle and leave the shells of our crusts behind. The adults would shake their heads. Sometime’s I’d eat the crispy edge piece, but the soggy bottom crust? No thank you.

Vegan Pumpkin Pie Parfaits

Which brings us to pumpkin pie parfaits! It’s what crust-less dreams are made of.

This recipe comes with a few options. I tested these a few of different ways and honestly both of these taste so good that I couldn’t choose a winner. One option uses cashews and coconut milk as the base and requires the use of a high speed blender. The other uses coconut cream and will work with any blender or food processor. In lieu of crust, I layered these with toasted chopped pecans. They are so easy and delicious, even if they are a bit of a modified tradition.

Vegan Pumpkin Pie Parfaits Vegan Pumpkin Pie Parfaits