Category:

Vegetarian

Squash casserole is a well loved dish in the south. You would expect to see it at family gatherings, weddings, funerals, parties, potlucks etc…. you get the idea! Squash casserole is versatile in that substitutions almost always happen depending upon what you have on hand, and are always delicious! This versatility is what is what allows me to make this dish gluten free!

Enjoy this dish on its own as a filling vegetarian meal or crowd pleasing side dish! You can also brown up a pound of ground or shredded meat to up the protein for you and your family. Simply fry up a protein of your choice with a little salt and pepper and add it to the dish before topping and baking. 

Southern Squash Casserole

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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Course: Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Servings: 6
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Ingredients:
 
  • 10 cups yellow squash (sliced roughly ¼" thick)
  • 1 large white onion (chopped)
  • ¼ cup whisky, chicken broth, or water
  • 1 Tbsp garlic powder
  • ½ cup mayo
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 cups sharp cheddar cheese (shredded)
  • 2 ½ cups GF panko bread crumbs
  • 1 ½ tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp ground black pepper
  • 3 Tbsp butter
  • 1 pound ground or shredded meat (*optional)
Instructions:
  • Preheat your oven to 400°F
  • Prep your onion and squash. In a large pot over med-high heat add 1 Tbsp butter and chopped onion. Saute until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. If using raw meat, go ahead and brown it with the onions. Just add a little salt and pepper to taste to season the meat.
  • Deglaze the pan with ¼ cup whisky, chicken broth, or water.
  • After the onion is browned, add the sliced squash and cook stirring frequently until all squash is soft. Cook time will depend upon how thick you sliced the squash. I tend to slice mine roughly a quarter inch thick. When squash is cooked turn off the heat and set aside.
  • In a large bowl combine the mayo, salt, pepper, eggs, garlic powder, 2 cups of cheese, and 1 ½ cups GF panko. Whisk together.
  • Using a large slotted spoon to drain the excess liquid transfer the cooked squash and onions (and meat if using) into the bowl with your mayo mixture. Stir well to combine and pour into a 9 x 13 baking dish.
  • Melt the remaining 2 Tbsp butter and mix with 1 cup shredded cheddar and 1 cup GF panko. Stir together and spread evenly over top of your squash.
  • Bake uncovered for 20-30 minutes or until breadcrumbs are golden brown and cheese is melted. Enjoy!

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Inspired by one of my favorite restaurants in San Antonio, Green Vegetarian, this poblano ranch is vegan, unique, craveable, and delicious!

This dressing is not only wonderful on your favorite salad, but makes a show stopping dip as well!

Poblano Ranch (V)

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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Course: dressing
Cuisine: American
Servings: 2 cups
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Ingredients:
 
  • ¾ cup coconut cream (well shaken)
  • ½ cup mayo
  • ½ cup basil leaves (tightly packed)
  • ¼ cup pecans
  • 1 large poblano pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 ½ tsp onion powder
  • ½ tsp dill
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
Instructions:
  • Slice the top off of the poblano pepper and remove the seeds.
  • In a dry skillet over high heat place the poblano pepper in the pan and burn on all sides. The skin should be very well charred. Leave the skin on, and do not peel the pepper.
  • In a blender combine all ingredients and blend until smooth.
  • Let sit for 10 minutes to allow all the flavors to fully develop. Taste for salt and adjust as necessary. Enjoy!

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Is there anything more refreshing on a hot summer day than a glass of lemonade?

Today I’ve put a fun twist on the iconic American classic by incorporating basil and strawberry for a uniquely addictive flavor that’ll keep you coming back for more. I enjoy my lemonade slighty more tart than the averge bear, but if after you’ve tasted it you decide it’s too tart for you go ahead and add an extra cup of sugar or a few cups of water and it’ll bring the acidity right on down and have you sippin’ sweetly!

For an even better twist add a few shots of vodka and finish with sparking water or club soda to get the party going right!

Strawberry Basil Lemonade

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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: American
Servings: 1 Gallon
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Ingredients:
 
  • 2 pounds strawberries (halved)
  • 4 ½ cups lemon juice (fresh or half fresh, half bottled. )
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 10 cups water
  • 3 cups basil leaves (packed)
  • Cheese cloth or a fine mesh strainer
Instructions:
  • Preheat your oven to 425°F, and if needed get to squeezin' those lemons!
  • When oven is preheated place strawberry halves on a baking tray and roast for 30 minutes. The strawberries will darken in color and give up some of their juices.
  • While strawberries are roasting, in a small sauce pan combine 3 cups of sugar, 2 cups of water, and 3 cups basil leaves. Allow to melt over medium to medium-low heat without stirring. You're creating a simple syrup! Look at you getting down in the kitchen!
  • The syrup is done when all the sugar crystals have melted, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside allowing the basil leaves to continue to steep.
  • Add your lemon juice to your serving container.
  • When strawberries have finished puree them in a blender or food processor with 2 cups water.
  • Strain the strawberry puree through a cheese cloth or fine mesh strainer and into your serving container. This removes any seeds and makes a smooth tasty lemonade.
  • Remove the basil leaves from the simple syrup and add the syrup to your lemonade.
  • Add the remaining 6 cups of water and stir well. Taste for sweetness and adjust as desired. Enjoy with family and friends!

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These summer rolls are fresh, crunchy, and filled with the flavors of crisp summer vegetables. If tofu isn’t your thing feel free to use whatever protein floats your boat! You can also change the vegetables, add avocado, rice noodles, basil, mint, cilantro etc. Your only limit is your imagination.

Real talk- this is a whole lot of chopping and if I was smarter I totally would have bought shredded carrots, and prechopped veggies to take out some of the work. Learn from me, absorb my wisdom! Unless you’re into an odd amount of chopping then you know…go on with your bad self!

Crispy Tofu Summer Rolls

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Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Assembly Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Vietnamese
Servings: 16 rolls
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Ingredients:
 
  • 16 rice paper wrappers
  • 14 oz brick extra firm tofu
  • 2 Tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 2 large red bell peppers (julienned)
  • 2 large carrots (peeled, julienned)
  • 1 large english cucumber (julienned)
  • 1 head green leaf or butter lettuce (chopped)
  • ½ cup peanut butter (crunchy or smooth)
  • 2 Tbsp tamari
  • ½ cup water
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1 Tbsp garlic chili paste or sriracha
Instructions:
  • Drain and press the water from your tofu and slice it into 16 equal pieces.
  • In a small bowl mix together the peanut butter, ½ cup water, 1 Tbsp sesame oil, 1 Tbsp sugar, 1 Tbsp garlic chili paste or sriracha, and 2 Tbsp tamari. If you want this to be a thinner consistency just continue to thin with water until you like it. This is your dipping sauce!
  • In a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat pour 1 Tbsp sesame oil and swirl around the pan. Add the tofu slices and cook for roughly 5 minutes per side or until they are golden brown on each side. Sprinkle the warm tofu with 1 tsp black pepper, and allow the tofu to cool. Set aside.
  • Prepare your vegetables and fill a pie dish or shallow bowl half way with warm water. Prepare an assembly line with the lettuce, carrot, bell pepper, cucumber, and tofu. You will also need a work area large enough to roll your wrappers that you aren't afraid to get wet.
  • Working one at a time submerge your rice paper into the warm water soaking the wrapper until it is soft enough to bend without cracking. This should take no more than one minute. The wrapper will continue to soften as you fill your summer rolls so there's not need to soften it completely.
  • Lightly wet your working surface and spread the wrapper flat.
  • In the center of the softened wrapper lay down your lettuce, then carrot, cucumber, bell pepper, and top with the crispy tofu.
  • Fold the sides of the wrapper in, then the bottom up towards the center overlapping the sides, and tightly roll the rest of the roll towards the top to close. Just like wrapping a burrito! The wrapper will become sticky and remain closed on it's own. Follow the same directions for the remaining rolls.
  • When all the rolls are finished pat yourself on the back for doing all that work and enjoy your summer rolls dipped in the sauce! Way to go champ!

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Real talk- you don’t have to peel the apples, but it does make for a tougher bite. Peeling the apples makes for a soft easy to munch pastry, but if you’re lazy like me, it tastes the same at the end and sometimes you just can’t be bothered. Serve these drizzled with honey, sprinkled with powdered sugar, or eat them warm with a cold scoop of vanilla ice cream!

Apple Pie Puffs

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Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4
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Ingredients:
 
  • 2 large apples (honeycrisp or granny smith)
  • 2 Tbsp light brown sugar (packed)
  • 2 Tbsp white sugar
  • 2 Tbsp melted butter
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • tsp ground mace or nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 sheet GF puff pastry (thawed, I used Schar brand)
  • honey (for drizzling *optional)
  • powdered sugar (for sprinkling *optional)
Instructions:
  • Preheat the oven to 400°F. Once the oven has reached 400° allow it to stay for there for 10 minutes before putting your pastries in.
  • While the oven preheats peel and thinly slice your apples.
  • In a bowl combine, brown and white sugar, cinnamon, mace, melted butter, salt, and stir together. Add the apple slices to the bowl and toss in the sugar mixture to coat each slice evenly.
  • Line a baking tray with parchment or a silicone baking mat.
  • Cut your puffed pastry into 4 even pieces, and place on your prepared baking try spaced evenly apart. Brush each piece lightly with your beaten egg and water.
  • Divide your slices evenly, and lay your apples down the middle of your pastry squares tightly overlapping each slice.
  • Bake the puffs for 25-30 minutes on the middle rack of your oven.
  • Pastries are ready when the apples are soft and the pastry is a deep golden brown, allow to cool slightly and enjoy drizzled with honey and powdered sugar.

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Crunchy, sweet, sour, citrus-y, and a little spicy this slaw has it all! Feel free to adjust the measurements, and knife cuts to accommodate your own tastes! I left the apple and radish in larger bites because I’m lazy and hate cutting things into matchsticks, but if you want everything the same size you’re the boss. Want it more acidic? Add more lime or apple cider vinegar. Sweeter? Up the sugar. Need more heat? Add some red chili flakes or cayenne to the mix. Food is meant to be personal and fun to YOU, so play with it!

Apple Cabbage Slaw With Jalapeno Citrus Dressing

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Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Servings: 6
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Ingredients:
 
  • 1/2 a small red cabbage (about 4-5 cups, thinly sliced)
  • 2 granny smith apples (cored and thinly sliced)
  • 4 radishes (thinly sliced)
  • 1 bunch green onion (thinly sliced)
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 6 Tbsp Apple cider vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp pickled jalapeno brine
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • 2 limes (juiced)
  • 1 orange (juiced)
  • 1 Tbsp salt
  • 2 tsp black or pink pepper
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
Instructions:
  • In a large bowl combine the olive oil, vinegar, brine, lime juice, orange juice, salt, pepper, sugar, and chili powder. Whisk together.
  • Add the cabbage, radish, onion, and apple to the bowl and toss together with your hands coating everything well.
  • Let the slaw sit for 10 minutes before serving as the dressing will soften everything up.
  • Taste for seasonings, and adjust as desired. Toss again just before serving and enjoy!

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These can be made with or without bacon to accommodate your needs without sacrificing flavor. They can also be sprinkled with your favorite BBQ seasoning or brushed with your favorite hot sauce for a fun kick! No matter which direction you choose, these giant mounds of flavor will be great along side your dinner (or as your dinner – no judgement here).

Jalapeno Popper Stuffed Portobellos

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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Servings: 6
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Ingredients:
 
  • 6 giant portobello mushroom caps
  • 1 brick cream cheese
  • 1 cup GF panko bread crumbs
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 6 jalapenos (Seeds removed, minced)
  • 1 package bacon (cooked and crumbled *optional)
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
Instructions:
  • Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Wash and clean your mushroom caps removing the stems, and scraping out the gills.
  • Place the caps on a baking try and brush olive oil over the backs of the mushrooms so they don't stick to the pan.
  • Combine all remaining ingredients, and divide evenly between the mushrooms.
  • Spread the mixture to fill the entire cap, and bake for 20 minutes. Enjoy!

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Raspberry Chipotle Roasted Brussels Sprouts

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Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Servings: 6

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Ingredients:

 

  • 8 cups Brussels sprouts (halved)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp raspberry preserves
  • 2 tsp chipotle powder
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp onion powder
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
Instructions:

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • In a small bowl whisk together the olive oil, raspberry preserves, chipotle powder, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and black pepper. Taste and adjust seasonings if desired.
  • Place the sprouts on a large baking sheet and pour the raspberry sauce over it.
  • Toss together with your hands and evenly coat all the sprouts.
  • Spread the sprouts into a single even layer.
  • Roast at 400 for 40 minutes, or until the flat side is soft and golden brown. Enjoy!

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When blending smoothies the way to get the best result is to put the liquids in the bottom of the blender and work your way up to solids. So for this smoothie we would put the orange juice in first. Then milk if using, vanilla, yogurt, mango, and then the ice. Silky smooth every time!

This orange mango smoothie is sweet, tart, creamy and a healthy treat! With no added sugar, ten grams of protein a serving, and fiber to spare it’s a guaranteed hit anytime of the day! I enjoy this smoothie T-H-I-C-C, but if you want to thin it simply add one cup of milk into the mix and enjoy.

Orange Mango Smoothie

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Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4 (10 oz)
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Ingredients:
 
  • 3 cups mango (fresh or frozen)
  • 2 cups plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup ice
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup milk (to thin *optional)
Instructions:
  • Toss everything into your blender and make it smooth! You got this Travis! BOOM. Smoothie! Enjoy cold.

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This is one of my favorite salads ever! It’s sweet, savory, nutty, and when paired with my french dressing has the perfect amount of tang. *chef kiss* We eat this as a side salad at home, but to serve as a main dish double everything and add a protein. Some herbed chicken breast, pan fried tofu, or even some cooked quinoa or amaranth would all pair nicely!

Sometimes I add a teaspoon of honey to the dressing for a sweeter take. Feel free to mix it up! Use your favorite dressing, try spring mix instead, add crispy prosciutto, try different cheeses, make some croutons with your favorite GF bread! All solid choices.

Pear, Parmesan, and Pine Nut Salad

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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Course: Salad
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4
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Ingredients:
 
  • 8 oz baby spinach and arugula mix
  • 1 pear thinly sliced
  • 3 oz shaved Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts
  • 1/2 recipe French Dressing
Instructions:
  • In a small dry skillet over low heat, toast pine nuts. You’ll see them start to release their natural oils. Once this happens they will brown QUICKLY. Keep an eye on them. Don’t do anything else while these are toasting or you will burn them. Learn from me!
  • In a large bowl add the baby spinach and arugula mix, and shave the Parmesan on top.
  • Slice the pear and add it on top of the salad.
  • When the pine nuts are toasted sprinkle them on top, and pour the dressing over.
  • Toss to coat everything and enjoy!

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