Loaded Veggie Tacos

Inspired by the colorful sights and tastes of Mexcio, Loaded Veggie Tacos are an explosion flavor! Ándele, it’s taco time!

¡Hola amigos! In case you haven’t seen or heard my endless rambling about our trip to Mexico, let me fill you in. Two weeks ago, my parents, John, and I set out for Tulum, a small town about 80 miles south of Cancun. We rented a condo for 8 days and enjoyed one of the best vacations of my life. I’m hoping to write a post about it soon, but couldn’t wait to share my new favorite tacos!

Loaded Veggie Tacos | AreYouKitchenMe.com

While we were planning our trip, I was a little worried that vegan options would be hard to come by in Mexico. I was thrilled to learn that Tulum is packed full of eco-resorts, yoga retreats, and just generally a lot of crunchy, healthy people. And while the tourist part offered a wealth of raw kombucha and Buddha bowls, the local fare was just as incredible. And plant-friendly!

Loaded Veggie Tacos | AreYouKitchenMe.com

Of all the places we ate, the authentic spots tucked into the back roads of downtown Tulum (where more locals reside) were my favorite. Being on the coast meant that they all served incredibly fresh seafood, which my family devoured. But the veggie tacos were like nothing I’ve ever had in my life.

Loaded Veggie Tacos | AreYouKitchenMe.com

If you’ve ever eaten vegan for a period of time, you’ve probably had some form of veggie tacos or fajitas at an American Mexican restaurant that involved little more than sautéed peppers and onions and mediocre flour tortillas. Tacos in Mexico are a far cry from those steaming plates of sadness. I mean, these things were packed!! Everywhere we went, I got three or four double-shelled fresh corn tortillas packed to the gills with a variety of veggies. Broccoli, zucchini, carrots, onions, a literal cornucopia of plants. And on the side, beans, guac, rice, plantains, chips, salsa… Whew! I need to unbutton my pants just thinking about it.

Loaded Veggie Tacos | AreYouKitchenMe.com

Clearly, the tacos in Mexico were memorable. I couldn’t get them out of my brain so naturally, I had to recreate them at home. The key to getting lightly charred and perfectly cooked veg is super high heat. I crank my cast iron to 8 out of 10 and make sure to avoid over crowding in the pan. This means cooking in batches but is worth the extra time, I promise. If you prep all of your veggies the day before, you can get everything done in about a half hour.

What I’m saying is you’re just 30 minutes away from closing your eyes, taking a bite, and being transported to the warm beach and endless guacamole…

Loaded Veggie Tacos

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Yield: a LOT of tacos

Serving Size: however many tacos you're hungry for

Inspired by the colorful sights and tastes of Mexcio, Loaded Veggie Tacos are an explosion flavor! Ándele, it’s taco time!

Ingredients

    Veggie Filling:
  • 3 sweet bell peppers, sliced into 1” pieces
  • 1 poblano chili (or green pepper), sliced into 1” pieces
  • 2 carrots, sliced into rounds
  • 2 cups mushroom slices
  • 1½ cups small broccoli florets
  • 1½ cups small cauliflower florets
  • 1 small zucchini, halved lengthwise then sliced
  • 1 small onion, sliced into 1” pieces
  • 2 tsp. salt, divided
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • ½ tsp. black pepper
  • 3 or more Tbs. avocado or other high-heat oil
  • Tacos:
  • 8-12 small tortillas
  • 1 can refried beans
  • 1 large avocado
  • Green salsa
  • Limes

Instructions

  1. Heat a large cast iron to high heat (8/10) and add a few teaspoons of oil. Cook each vegetable one at a time, until charred and crisp. Once one vegetable is done, remove them to a large bowl. Add more oil between each vegetable and season with salt and pepper at each step. Timelines for vegetables: Peppers: 3-4 minutes. Zucchini: 3-4 minutes. Mushrooms: 4-5 minutes. Onions: 5-6 minutes. Carrots, Broccoli, Cauliflower: 5-6 minutes each (add water and cover to help soften).
  2. While vegetables are cooking, gather assembly ingredients. If you would like, lightly char the tortillas on the hot pan or stovetop and warm the beans in a pot or microwave.
  3. Once all of the vegetables are cooked, toss them together in the bowl and add the oregano, additional salt to taste, and pepper.
  4. To serve, spread a tortilla with beans, pile on vegetables, and top with salsa, avocado, and a squeeze of lime. Best enjoyed with a large margarita. 😉

Notes

If you have a grill, this recipe time can be cut significantly. Cook the peppers, onions, zucchini, and mushrooms whole on the flame and then cut them once they've cooled slightly. I'd recommend still cooking the carrots, broccoli, and cauliflower in a pan with some water.

https://www.areyoukitchenme.com/loaded-veggie-tacos/

Classic Sugar Cookies

Happy Valentine’s Day! I’m back for my first recipe of 2018 and have been struck by Cupid- I’m in LOVE with Classic Sugar Cookies!

Heya howdy hi hello! Been a while, huh? I took December and January off of blogging and writing recipes and did a heck of a lot of reflecting and learning. It had originally been my (admittedly last-minute) intention to take some time off during December and “come back strong” in January with concrete goals and renewed energy. But as I thought about it…

I realized I was aiming to start the year with renewed mental strength, just as I had in years past with dieting and disordered eating behavior.

Fearing that I was going to fall into an addiction transfer trap and not wanting to set myself up for failure and disappointment, I decided not to push it. Deliberately and decidedly, I started this year off with no goals for this blog. John and I did set some personal goals like “set boundaries to protect my mental health” and “clean the litter box more frequently” but we worked hard to set objectives that were meaningful and achievable.

Classic Sugar Cookies (vegan) | AreYouKitchenMe.com

Classic Sugar Cookies (vegan) | AreYouKitchenMe.com

That said, one “unofficial” goal I have for writing this year is to feature less healthy and green recipes and incorporate more decadent and delightful noms. I still love vegetables and eating wholesome, balanced meals makes me feel great. But you know what fills me with nostalgia and joy?

Cookies.

Classic Sugar Cookies (vegan) | AreYouKitchenMe.com

I can take zero credit for the original recipe for these classic sugar cookies. My mom has been baking them every single Christmas for as long as I can remember. She has a printed recipe titled “Beth Stiver’s Sugar Cookies” (I have no idea who Beth Stivers is but I feel like I owe her a tray of cookies for all of the wonderful memories of my youth) but could probably bake them blindfolded.

Classic Sugar Cookies (vegan) | AreYouKitchenMe.com

One week in January, John asked me “Can we have sugar cookies besides just at Christmas?” and I was perplexed. It had genuinely never occurred to me to bake these outside of the holiday season. They were a treat after all, right? But how silly!

Why should cookies be limited to one time of year??

So cookies again it was! I’ve experimented with a few variations of veganizing the classic sugar cookies of my childhood and finally landed on a version I’m satisfied with. You’d never know they’re vegan- slightly crispy, soft in the center, and smothered in fluffy buttercream frosting.

Classic Sugar Cookies (vegan) | AreYouKitchenMe.com

Classic Sugar Cookies (vegan) | AreYouKitchenMe.com

I may not have concrete plans for writing in 2018, but I do have a lot of plans for eating cookies. Cheers to that.

Classic Sugar Cookies

Yield: 3-4 dozen cookies

Classic Sugar Cookie cutouts with a light and fluffy buttercream frosting! Perfect for your favorite holiday or, even better, any day of the year!

Ingredients

  • 1½ cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) room-temp non-dairy butter, I use Earth Balance
  • 2 Tbs. aquafaba (liquid drained from a can of chickpeas)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp. almond extract
  • 2½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. cream of tartar
  • Frosting
  • ½ cup (1 stick) room-temp non-dairy butter
  • 4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2-4 Tbs. non-dairy milk

Instructions

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream sugar and butter.
  2. Add aquafaba and extracts and beat to combine.
  3. Sift dry ingredients together in a separate bowl and slowly add into the wet until combined, scraping the sides.
  4. Shape the dough into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 2-3 hours, preferably overnight.
  5. Heat oven to 375F. Remove the dough from the fridge and allow to soften for about 30-60 minutes on the counter.
  6. Divide dough in half, generously flour work surface and rolling pin, and roll 3/16 inches thick. Use a cookie cutter to cut out shapes. *I like to freeze my cut out cookies for at least 15 minutes at this step to help them keep their shape in the oven but it is totally optional.
  7. Bake on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper for 7-8 minutes or until golden. Remove to a cooling rack and allow to cool completely before frosting.
  8. To make the frosting, beat the ingredients together with a hand mixer adding milk a little at a time, until smooth and spreadable. I decorated these cookies with finely crushed freeze-dried strawberries but feel free to use sprinkles or whatever floats your boat!
https://www.areyoukitchenme.com/classic-sugar-cookies/

Classic Sugar Cookies (vegan) | AreYouKitchenMe.com

What I Ate Wednesday

A quick recap of a day of eats! What I Ate Wednesday in a jiffy!

Happy Humpday friends! I got distracted and took a little nap on the couch so this is going to be a short and sweet update! Shall we?

What I Ate Wednesday | www.AreYouKitchenMe.com

Breakfast: Half a banana before the gym then a pumpkin smoothie with allll the spinach.

What I Ate Wednesday | www.AreYouKitchenMe.com

Snack: Opal apple- they’re back in season!

What I Ate Wednesday | www.AreYouKitchenMe.com

Lunch: Thanksgiving leftovers. Some of my Harvest Kale Salad (with added roasted delicata squash), my spin on Gena’s lentil loaf, mushroom gravy, and this sweet potato casserole recipe, veganized. Oh, and Whole Foods cranberry sauce. (P.S. anyone else SO sick of Thanksgiving leftover?!)

What I Ate Wednesday | www.AreYouKitchenMe.com

Snack: Trader Joe’s crispy green pea snacks while I made dinner. Not pictured cup of herbal tea.

What I Ate Wednesday | www.AreYouKitchenMe.com

Dinner: Trader Joe’s cauliflower crust pizza. Frozen crust (it was just ok), tomato sauce, Follow Your Heart shredded mozzarella, spinach, artichokes, chopped garlic, a drizzle of olive oil, and some homemade vegan “parm”.

What I Ate Wednesday | www.AreYouKitchenMe.com

Snack: Half of a Healthaid holiday kombucha. Found this rare flavor at Whole Foods Easton!

What I Ate Wednesday | www.AreYouKitchenMe.com

Dessert: An extra crispy pumpkin pie bite with Whole Foods’ coconut whipper topping. This stuff is LEGIT!

And that’s all y’all! Have a fan-freaking-tastic week!

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 85