black bean & quinoa burgers

black bean quinoa burgers (vegan, gluten free) / loveandlemons.com black bean quinoa burgers (vegan, gluten free) / loveandlemons.com

I’m not sure where to begin here. I can’t decide if I’m more excited to tell you about this vegan veggie burger that I’ve been working on for quite some time, or if I should start by talking about this to-die-for chipotle mayo. I could also go on and on about the typography on that (spiced!) ketchup bottle. There are a lot of drool-worthy things are happening for me here.

Ok, twist my arm, I’ll start with the ketchup bottle. (I mean how cute is that!)… Beyond the sans-serif, Sir Kensington’s ketchup is also sans-additives, stabilizers and other artificial ingredients… it’s made from real tomatoes (not concentrate) and it just tastes fresh. (Jack hates ketchup and he loved this). It also has less sugar, which is good for me because I easily use twice as much ketchup as any normal person.

black bean quinoa burgers (vegan, gluten free) / loveandlemons.com

I set some strict veggie burger criteria for this recipe: no eggs, no cheese, no oats, no rice. I really wanted to make this vegan so everyone could enjoy. I didn’t want to use oats or rice because I feel like those things make heavy gummy burgers and I wanted a better texture and a little more protein. Black beans & flax make it cohesive while the walnuts create a nice bite and the quinoa makes it a little crisp around the edges.

If you’re a “sometimes vegan,” like myself, I also encourage you to slather your burger with chipotle mayo. That is… if it makes it to your burger. This stuff is so good you’ll most likely want to lick it straight off the knife.

Go to the recipe “black bean & quinoa burgers”…

raspberry crumble bars

raspberry crumble bars (vegan) / loveandlemons.com 2raspberry crumble bars (vegan) / loveandlemons.com

Warning: these are highly addictive and way too easy to make. I’ve been meaning to post these for awhile… the problem is that every time I’ve made them we just eat them. There’s a lot of restraint involved in taking pictures of food.

These are inspired by one of my favorite treats – those raspberry bars at Whole Foods (the super delicious buttery ones). My version here uses coconut oil and walnuts which makes them a tad healthier although they’re still pretty indulgent. A perfect little 3 o’clock snack.

You likely have all of these ingredients in your pantry already. I used store-bought raspberry jam, nothing fancy. (In the summer I might try fresh fruit). I used spelt flour, but regular or whole wheat flour would be fine. If you’re gluten free, try gluten free oat flour.

Enjoy!

Go to the recipe “raspberry crumble bars”…

“ricotta” stuffed cabbage

vegan ricotta stuffed cabbage (grain free & gluten free) / loveandlemons.com vegan ricotta stuffed cabbage (grain free & gluten free) / loveandlemons.com

This is my gluten free solution last week’s stuffed shells. You’ll notice it’s also pasta-free but trust me – this “cheesy” cashew filling – tastes just as indulgent.

This little creation was a total happy accident… while I was shopping, I had filled my cart with everything necessary for the stuffed shells, with one ingredient left to go: the shells. And just my luck, no shells. I figured, I’d go searching for them somewhere else the next day. But when I got home I noticed a lonely cabbage in my fridge and voilà.

vegan ricotta stuffed cabbage (grain free & gluten free) / loveandlemons.com

When I remade these (for this post) I found this beautiful savoy cabbage, but regular large green cabbage leaves worked just as well. Large halves of chard leaves (without the stems) were also delicious. In the summer, I’ll roll this filling with thin strips of zucchini or eggplant.

I grated a little bit of pecorino on top for a bit of a cheesy crust (but if you’re vegan just leave that off).

Go to the recipe ““ricotta” stuffed cabbage”…

vegan stuffed shells

vegan stuffed shells / loveandlemons.com vegan stuffed shells / loveandlemons.com

I swear, no one will know this is vegan. Ok, that was a big statement, let me start over. I’m really pretty sure that this one will win over your pickiest eaters. This isn’t fancy food here… we all loved jumbo shells in the 90′s and I’m bringing them back today with the best quotation marked “ricotta” that I’ve made yet.

The trick is to combine cashew cream with tofu. I’ve made a lot of vegan lasagnas by crumbling tofu with herbs – which looks very ricotta-esque, but still tastes decidedly tofu. The cashew cream offers a bigger better flavor and the tofu is there for texture. I also snuck some kale in for good measure.

vegan stuffed shells / loveandlemons.com

And (now) speaking of fancy food – this post was inspired by the selection of ingredients that came in my Hatchery Box. Hatchery is a monthly subscription of tasty artisan-made treats that come right to your door. Much the same way I love my farm delivery for produce - I just love this for the surprise of it all. Surprise ingredients are what get me out of cooking ruts. If you’re not one for surprises, don’t worry they send recipe cards to go along with each ingredient as well.

vegan stuffed shells / loveandlemons.com

Sauce, bake & devour…

Go to the recipe “vegan stuffed shells”…

sesame noodle salad

sesame noodle salad / loveandlemons.com sesame noodle salad / loveandlemons.com

They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day but I think Monday lunch is the most important meal of the week. If I’ve destroyed myself indulged a little too much over the weekend, I like to recover with a good healthy Monday lunch. Start the week off right and it’s easier to make healthier choices throughout the week. I’m also trying to make more meals in advance (I’m hoping these kinds of recipes are helpful for you too).

sesame noodle salad / loveandlemons.com

This is a noodle salad, but secretly there’s a kale salad hidden in here as well. I like to go light on the noodles and pile on a rainbow of veggies of varying textures – this time I went with soft kale, thinly sliced cabbage, meaty mushrooms and some crunchy carrots and radishes. (There’s also some tofu that’s not pictured, but feel free to sub in whatever protein you like). We ate this for dinner one night and I packed it up for lunch the next day.

A good start to the week… even if all bets might be off by Friday.

Go to the recipe “sesame noodle salad”…