Category Archives: Low Fat

Vegan Mac and “Cheese” Oven Style

Ingredients
1 1/2 cups rice milk (or nonfat soy milk)
(Up to one cup of vegetable broth..maybe you will see in the instructions)
1/3 cup tamari style soy sauce (Or Bragg’s)
1 1/2 cups nutritional yeast flakes
1 tablespoon paprika
1 tablespoon garlic powder
Salt and pepper to taste. (Tamari should take care of the salt to be honest)
5 ounces (half a box) firm silken tofu (I usually go for the lite version)
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 lbs macaroni noodles (I use brown rice noodels)
1 2 Ounce jar of pimentos.
1/2 Teaspoon liquid smoke (optional but I highly reccomend it.)

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Boil water in a big pot for the pasta.

Blend everything in a blender, except your noodles. (Duh!)
If this looks too thick, (and it will) you can thin it with a quarter cup of vegetable broth at a time, while continuing to blend. Probably another cup of liquid or so. I never go over a cup though as per the ingredient list above.

Drain cooked pasta and pour your “cheeze sauce” over the top.

Bake until slightly browned and crispy about 20 minutes.
Note: If you use meat substitutes from time to time, or if you are taking this to a pot-luck or reunion, some diced vegan ham or vegan bacon really sends this over the top.

Toasted Chickpeas (Garbanzo Beans)

I like to soak and cook my own chickpeas, but for a faster prep-time canned fit the bill just fine.

3 Cans Garbanzo Beans – drained and rinsed.
1 Tablespoon Chili Powder
1 Tablespoon Garlic Powder
3 Tablespoons Soy Sauce

Start by mixing your spices in a large ziplock baggie.
Next add your soy sauce and mix until your spices are dissolved.
Finally add your chickpeas to the bag, and toss until evenly coated.
Bake at 350F for about 30 minutes, give or take.
My wife likes to pull these early, when they are very reminiscent of a savory roasted chestnut. I like to leave them in until they are brown and crunchy like a fat-free corn-nut. Either way, we are always sad to see the end of this snack.

Swiss Steak Boca (*With GF Option)

Original Boca Burgers are vegan and low fat, coming in at about half a gram of fat per serving. *To make this dish gluten-free, you can substitute your favorite homemade bean burger patty or even grilled portobello mushroom caps for the Boca.

1 large onion – thinly sliced
1/4 cup Vegetable Broth
3 cups mushrooms – thickly sliced
1 Red bell pepper – seeded and diced
6 Cloves of garlic – minced
1 Bunch fresh basil – chopped
3 Tablespoons of tamari soy sauce
2 Cans diced tomatoes
1 Tablespoon black pepper
1/2 Cup nutritional yeast flakes
4 Original Vegan Boca patties (*or bean/tofu/portobello burger patties)

Steam fry the onion in vegetable broth until the onion starts to turn clear. Add the mushrooms, red bell pepper, garlic, and basil.

Continue cooking over medium heat for 10 minutes, then stir in the tamari, diced tomatoes, yeast flakes, and black pepper.
Simmer another 5 minutes.

Preheat oven to 400°F.

Spread a layer of sauce evenly in the bottom of a 9″ by 9″ baking dish to prevent sticking. Arrange the patties in the dish, then cover with the remaining sauce.

Bake uncovered for 30 minutes.

Serve over pasta or rice.

This vegan take on Swiss Steak is a very satisfying traditional dinner that the entire family will love.

Old Fashioned Cornmeal Gravy

1/3 Cup Cornmeal
2 Cups non-fat soy milk
2 Tablespoons soy sauce
1/4 Cup Nutritional Yeast Flakes

Brown the cornmeal in a dry skillet over a low to medium heat. No oil needed. Keep an eye on it, however, as scorching it means you need to start over.
You want to stir it until you get a golden brown.

Slowly add a quarter cup of the soy milk at a time, whisking it in. As your gravy thickens, add more soy milk. Continue this process until the gravy is at the consistency you want. Add your soy sauce (I used tamari) and yeast flakes.
Allow to sit for a few minutes before you use it. You may find that it continued to thicken. A dash more soy milk and you are home-free.

Traditionally this is made with lard. The soy and yeast step in and really pick up the slack on this tasty vegan version. Cornmeal gravy goes great on anything that needs gravy. It has the unique flavor of roasted corn sweetness that I grew to love as a child. Enjoy.

Spinach and Mushroom Enchiladas

1/4 Cup Vegetable Broth
2 Cups Button Mushrooms – Quartered
1/2 lb Fresh Baby Leaf Spinach
1 Onion – Finely Chopped
1/2 Cup Nutritional Yeast Flakes
2 Tablespoons Tamari Soy Sauce (Or Bragg’s Liquid Aminos)
2 Cups Cooked Brown Rice
16 Corn Tortillas
Full Recipe Enchilada Sauce (See recipe under sauces)

“Steam Fry” the onion with vegetable broth until they start to soften and look translucent.
Add spinach. It looks like too much at first, but it will reduce quickly.

Toss until the spinach has wilted and add the mushrooms.
Resist the temptation to chop the mushrooms, as you really want them quartered to add a meaty zip to the recipe.

When the mushrooms start to soften, add rice, soy sauce and yeast flake to the mixture.

Pre-warm the corn tortillas in the oven or a microwave. In the microwave, I warm a stack of 8 at a time for 45 seconds.
If you don’t pre-warm them they will split as you try to roll the enchiladas. (They will still be delicious however)

Place a cup of sauce in the bottom of two casserole dishes.
Spoon your filling into a corn tortilla and roll, placing seam side down. Once you have made all of your enchiladas, use the remaining sauce to cover.
Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

The nutritional yeast flake and tamari, combine with the liquid of your vegetables to make a cheesy sauce. Combined with the chunks of mushrooms make this enchilada recipe a weekly family favorite at my house.

Melungeon Stew

1/4 Cup Water
1 Onion – Chopped
2 Cloves Garlic – Minced
1 Bunch Fresh Greens
4 Cups Vegetable Broth
4 Large Ripe Tomatoes – Chopped
2 12oz Jars Fire Roasted Red Peppers – Drained
4 Cans Black-Eyed Peas – Drained and Rinsed
2 Cups Frozen Kernal Corn
2 Teaspoons Basil
2 Teaspoons Liquid Smoke
2 Tablespoons Soy Sauce (Or to taste)

First saute the onion and garlic in the water, until the onions soften. (About five minutes)

Add your greens, and continue to saute until they reduce and soften. (Another three minutes or so)

Blend 2 can black-eyed peas with two cups of broth, the roasted red peppers. (This will give your soup a thick rich texture.)

Combine all ingredients in a stock pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for another 10 minutes.

This hearty stew from the heart of Appalachia, is a New Year’s Day tradition at my house, but there is no reason to wait. Add more soy sauce for a saltier flavor, or less if sodium is an issue.

Soy sauce and liquid smoke go a long way toward replacing the bacon, in this old family recipe. Although the traditional “greens” in this recipe is listed as “poke weed” in the original, I find that kale and/or collards stand in very well.

Shelley’s Vegan Dark Chocolate Brownies (Gluten Free)

1 1/2 Cups Sweet White Sorghum Flour
1/2 Cup Brown Rice Flour
1 1/3 Cup Cocoa Powder
2 Teaspoons Baking Powder
2 Teaspoons Baking Soda
2 Cups Prune Syrup (See recipe under sauces)
2 Tablespoons Vanilla Extract
2 Cups Soy Milk
1/4 Cup Egg Replacer Mixed in 3/4 Cup Water
1/2 to 1 Cup Apple Sauce

Mix flours, cocoa powder, baking powder and baking soda together, and set aside.

In a separate bowl mix, soy milk, vanilla extract and prune syrup.

In yet a third bowl, whip egg-replacer until quite foamy, then add it to the liquid bowl and mix all the liquid ingredients together.

Finally mix the wet into the dry ingredients.
If your mix is too thick, and I think it will be, add 1/2 cup of apple sauce. If it is still too thick add another 1/2 cup apple sauce. This adds moisture that stays after the back, without watering down the “sweet” of the brownie.

Spoon into a silicon baking dish.
Bake at 350 for 30 minutes (or until the brownies push back)

These brownies are vegan, fat-free and whole grain! (Yes sweet white sorghum flour is a whole grain flour) The prune syrup gives them just the right amount of “gooey” to make you feel way more guilty than you should.

Gluten Free Bran Muffins

1/2 Cup Brown Rice Flour

1/2 Cup Oat Bran

1/4 Cup Arrowroot Powder

1/4 Cup Ground Flax Seed

1 Teaspoon Baking Powder

1 Teaspoon Baking Soda

1/4 Cup Raisins

3/4 Cup Soy Milk

1/2 Cup Prune Syrup (See Recipe Under “Sauces”)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a large mixing bowl, mix your dry ingredients.

In a medium mixing bowl mix the remaining ingredients, combining the liquids thoroughly.

Pour the liquid ingredients over the dry, and quickly mix until just blended.

Just fill the cups in a silicon muffin pan (requires no oil or spray) and bake for 20 minutes. (Give or take)

These high-fiber muffins make a satisfying “quick fix” breakfast as you head out the door, and they stay with you all the way until lunch. The prune syrup helps this recipe keep its moisture and adds that sinful gooey texture that we all know shouldn’t be part of a bran muffin. This time however, there’s no guilt.

Prune Syrup (Butter Substitute)

1/2 cup Agave Nectar

1 lb Prunes

1/2 cup water

Place prunes and agave nectar in food processor and process until nearly smooth. Slowly pour in water. You may need to scrape the sides and process further to get a smooth, thick syrup.

This isn’t a recipe for a meal. This is a recipe for an ingredient you will use in baking recipes. By using prune syrup instead of butter, you cut the calories in many baked goods in half, reduce fat by 85% and cholesterol to zero.  Use half the amount of the butter or shortening called for, or 3/4 the amount of oil called for in a baking recipe.

Breakfast Smoothie

2 Cups Frozen Blueberries

2 Cups Pomegranate Juice

2 Cups (packed) Fresh Baby Leaf Spinach

Put all ingredients in a powerful blender (Like a VitaMix for example)

Blend for 90 seconds or until smooth. You can do this in a regular blender, but the VitaMix pulverizes those pesky seeds into atoms. (Well…not atoms really, but so small as to not be noticed..) This smoothie has the most powerful anti-oxidants combined with the chlorophyll, minerals and vitamins of spinach. This is the best breakfast on the go!