Category Archives: Sandwiches/Wraps/Burritos, etc.

Kids LOVE Red Bell Peppers!

This week was all about red bell peppers. To be honest, every week is all about red bell peppers. The kids just love them. M’s lunchbox last year had raw red bell pepper strips on average 4 out of 5 days. We eat them raw, sauteed in a stir fry, grilled in fajitas, wrapped up in a tortilla, roasted in dips and spreads and the list goes on and on.

Bell peppers just happen to be one of hubby’s favorite foods as well. His favorite recipe growing up (and still to this day) is pepper steak. His mom makes an awesome recipe using red bell peppers instead of green.It’s a nice change and works so well. That recipe contains beef steak, but you can try it using tempeh or seitan instead…or just lots of meaty mushrooms.

Red Bell Peppers are incredibly high in Vitamin C. Just one cup has over 150% of your daily needs. Vitamin A and a few of the B’s are also found in decent amounts in these red beauties. Red Bells also have plenty of antioxidants and anti-cancer benefits.

Peppers of all kinds are super easy to grow at home. My green bells, jalapeno and banana peppers are all doing so great this year. I kept waiting and waiting for my red bells to appear. Upon closer inspection….I forgot to buy a red bell plant. UGH! No wonder they weren’t growing. ¬†ūüôā

Here is how we enjoyed our red bell peppers this week:

Roasted Red Pepper Pasta

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The girls and I really liked this. ¬†Hubby and son thought it was just ok. ¬† The sauce is creamier than a tomato based sauce. ¬†You could always add a little veggie stock to thin it out if you like…or maybe just leave out the cornstarch. ¬†And, if you are in a time crunch, feel free to cheat and use roasted red peppers from a jar instead of charring your own.

 

 

Veggie Tortilla Rollups

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I have made these several times, usually for an appetizer for a party.  They are always a hit!  They also make a great lunch for the littles.  Easy for little hands to pick up and a nice change from the everyday PB&J.

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It also makes a great lunch for a grown up…just cut in half as a wrap instead of slicing into bite size pieces.

 

 

Stuffed Peppers

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I replaced the hummus in this recipe with the leftover bean spread from the Veggie Tortilla Rollups (see recipe link above) and it was delicious. I’m sure the hummus would be great too, I just wanted to use up what we had. Little did I know I would be making hummus the next day anyway. ¬†ūüôā

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I served it up with a side of fresh sweet corn bought at the famers market that morning. Can’t go wrong there! ¬†Kids and hubby all loved this as well!

 

 

Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

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This is so easy. ¬†I just use my favorite hummus recipe and add a roasted red bell pepper (again, you can cheat and use jarred…I won’t tell!)

  • 1-2 ¬†garlic clove, peeled
  • 2 cups cooked chickpeas
  • 2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp tahini
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp ¬†sea salt
  • 1 roasted red bell pepper

Blend all ingredients in a food processor.  Hummus will thicken when refrigerated.  Enjoy with raw veggies, pretzels, crackers, pita chips or a spoon!

 

Is anyone growing red bell peppers in their garden?  How do you use them?  Share with me in the comments section!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Perfect Summer Lunch

This was my go-to sandwich last summer and I’ve been craving it again the last few weeks. ¬†I have made this numerous times and just can’t get enough. ¬†You can change out the veggies to please your palate. ¬†If you pre-cut your veggies when you get home from the grocery store, this will come together in seconds. ¬†And if not, it still only takes a few minutes. ¬†I find it flavorful enough that you don’t need any special spreads or dressing, but hummus would be a great addition. ¬†You could also add some mustard or vegan mayo if you wish. ¬†Proof that eating healthly can be quick, delicious and beautiful!

The Perfect Summer Veggie Sandwich

1/2 avocado, smashed or cut into thin slices

1/2 carrot, shredded or shaved

1/4 sweet red pepper, sliced thin

4 or 5 thin slices of cucumber

2 leaves of Bibb lettuce (or spinach or kale or romaine, etc)

2 slices Ezekial Whole Wheat Bread (or your bread of choice), toasted

Layer up the ingredients on one slice of bread and top with the other slice.  Serve with some delicous summer fruit on the side.  Enjoy!

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Once the radishes in my garden are ready to harvest, I will be adding those to this sandwich as well.  This would be perfect for a picnic on the go too!

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Today, I used the same veggie ingredients, but opted for a spinach tortilla instead of bread.  So yummy!!

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Doesn’t that look gorgeous?! ¬†Delicious!

 

 

 

 

My New Favorite Black Bean Burger

I am always trying new burger recipes, but I find myelf consistenly going back to the same black bean burger recipe that uses vital wheat gluten because it just works so well. ¬†Well, I finely found one withOUT vital wheat gluten that stays together just as well (if not better) and was so delicious. ¬†They even look more like the hamburgers that your carnivore friends would love. ¬†I “fried” these up in my new non-stick pan (that I am soooo loving by the way…absolutely no oil necessary), but they hold together so well that I am betting they would be wonderful on the grill too.

Black Bean Pecan Burgers by Namely Mary

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I did add a few splashes of liquid smoke to the ingredients…smoked paprika would work too. ¬†I just love that smoky flavor.

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Looks like a real hamburger, right? ¬†I’m glad this recipe made a lot because 3 of the 5 of us went back for seconds. ¬†And, I packed one in M’s lunchbox today and the girls and I had them for lunch today here at home. ¬†Yum!

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I topped mine high with mustard, veganaisse, lettuce, tomato and pickles. ¬†I was going to do avocado instead of veganaisse, but my avocados weren’t quite ripe yet.

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Looks super yummy, don’t you think? ¬†They come together really quick, especially if you have leftover rice. ¬†Go make up a batch today! ¬†Enjoy!

Lentil and Quinoa Stuffed Cabbage Rolls (Vegan)

Growing up with Polish relatives, I am no stranger to Golabki (stuffed cabbage rolls).  Traditionally, cabbage rolls are stuffed with ground beef, white rice, tomato sauce (usually made from condensed tomato soup) and cheese.  They were seriously delicious!  As a kid, while I liked the cabbage okay, it was really the filling I craved.  I remember asking my mom to sometimes make only the filling because it was obviously much quicker without having to stuff and then bake the cabbage rolls.  Yum!

Once I started my own family and started to be more concerned about what we put into our bodies this is how I saw those cabbage rolls: ¬†saturated fat, simple carbs, chemicals and cholesterol. ¬†Ugh. ¬†The good news is that you CAN have your cabbage roll and eat it too. ¬†ūüôā

Over the years, I’ve tried several different recipes with nutritious filling, but the one I tried yesterday is by far is my favorite. ¬†My 5 year old unwrapped the cabbage roll and ate only the filling (that’s still a win in my book!), my two 2yr olds ate all of it ¬†and my hubby and I enjoyed every last bite as well.

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Lentil and Quinoa Stuffed Cabbage Rolls (Vegan)

This were super easy to make. ¬†The filling came together quickly and filling and rolling the cabbage is much easier than it seems. ¬†I didn’t even use toothpicks to hold them together. ¬†My leaves were big enough that I rolled them several times and placed them seam side down in the casserole dish.

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I don’t even think I need to tell you how nutritious this lentil/quinoa/kale stuffing is, but if you need more convincing, here you go:

Lentils: high in fiber, folate, magnesium, iron and protein

Quinoa:  a complete protein, good source of heart healthy fats, high in folate, zinc and phosphorus

Kale:  very high in Vitamins K, A and C, anti-inflammatory and antioxident benefits

The cabbage itself is high in Vitamins K and C and also has anti-inflammatory and antioxident benefits. And the tomato sauce will give you Vitamins C and E and of course Lycopene.

From start to finish, this recipe is a nutritional powerhouse.

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Polish or not, you will love these!  Enjoy!

Vegan “Egg” Salad Sandwich

Think following a plant based diet means you can’t have your egg salad sandwich? ¬†Think again! ¬†Crumbled tofu looks, feels and tastes just like crumbled hard boiled eggs. ¬†It is also sooooo much easier than boiling and peeling all those eggs! ¬†Dress it up with your favorite egg salad fixin’s like Veganaise (mayo), mustard, pickle relish, celery, etc. and you will never know the difference…I promise! ¬†I didn’t really measure anything when I made this, so measurements in the ingredient list below are approximations. ¬†If you really like mustard, then by all means use more..same with the mayo. ¬†Don’t like carrots or celery, leave them out, or swap them out ¬†for your favorites (radish, sweet peppers, green onion, cucumber…all would be good).

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Vegan “Egg” Salad

  • 1 block firm tofu (make sure it’s non GMO), pressed* and crumbled
  • 3 tbsp Veganaise
  • 2 tbsp yellow mustard
  • 2 tbsp pickle relish
  • 2 stalks celery, diced small
  • 1 carrot, peeled and diced small
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • salt and pepper to taste

Place first six ingredients in a bowl and mix.  Drizzle with red wine vinegar.  Season with salt and pepper to your liking.  Mix again and enjoy!

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I toasted up some Ezekial whole wheat bread, added a little extra Veganaise and mustard to the toast, piled on the “egg” salad and topped with tomato slices. ¬†Yum! ¬†This would be great as a snack with whole wheat crackers or stuffed in a pita.

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Using tofu instead of eggs saves you more than 1/2 the calories and 2/3 of the fat and ALL of the cholesterol, but this salad is still high in protein and calcium.

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Take a big bite and enjoy!!

*To press tofu: Place block of tofu on a paper towel lined plate.  Place several more paper towels on top of the tofu and set another plate on top of that.  Weigh down the top plate with something fairly heavy (I usually use a few bags of dried beans).  Leave it like that for at least 30 minutes.  Your tofu is now ready to use!

Pumpkin Enchiladas

When I first saw this recipe on My Whole Food Life, I KNEW I had to try it. ¬†It took me awhile to get around to making it, but I finally did and it was delicious! ¬†I love all things pumpkin, sweet and savory. ¬†This is a wonderful savory option. ¬†I took the easy way out and used canned pumpkin and canned diced tomatoes. ¬†I simply added everything to a pot and let it simmer away for about an hour to let all the flavors blend. ¬†I’ve even made similar “cheese” sauces before without first having soaked my cashews and they turn out just fine (if you have a high speed blender or food processor). ¬†So, if you want something quick and easy, this actually could be a good option if you take some shortcuts. ¬†I think it’s just as good!

Pumpkin Enchiladas

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I used enchilada sauce on the bottom of my baking dish and again over the top of the enchiladas. ¬†I also drizzled some of the “cheese” sauce over the top of that. ¬†

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I did like the addition of the pistachio dust, but I don’t think it was a make-it-or-break deal. ¬†These would be great without if you don’t have pistachios. ¬†Avocado would also be a nice addition.

Enjoy!

Mexican Quinoa Burgers

Here’s an easy one for you that’s delicious too! ¬†I love a good burger and am always looking for new recipes to mix things up. ¬†Vegetarian and vegan burgers are really easy to change and adapt to create something new each time. ¬†We ate these Mexican Quinoa Burgers with no buns…just straight up with a little mustard/Veganaise combo on the side.

This is what they looked like before they were cooked.  You can see all the goodness in there!

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And after:

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Chock full of quinoa, black beans, peppers and onions, these hearty burgers are full of protein and vitamins!  Click HERE for the recipe.

I’m planning ahead for our Lucky New Year’s Day feast. ¬†Stay tuned for yummy recipes featuring black eyed peas, lentils, collard greens, and cornbread. ¬†I plan to have a great year!