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DIY: Vegan alternatives to favorite recipes

Being vegan doesn’t have to mean that you have to miss out on old favorites. In my own journey of eating cleaner and trying out some vegan options, I’ve found some really great recipes for some classic foods that all just so happen to be vegan.

The first recipe that I’m going to share with you is the best recipe for vegan chocolate chip cookies. What you’ll need is one-half cup of solid coconut oil, one and one-fourth cups of packed light brown sugar, two teaspoons of vanilla extract, one-fourth cup of coconut milk, one-fourth cup of unsweetened applesauce, two and one-fourth cups of all-purpose flour, one teaspoon of baking soda, one-half teaspoon of salt, two cups of vegan chocolate chips, and flaky sea salt.

First, preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set that aside. In a bowl, whisk together the coconut oil, brown sugar and vanilla, making sure that they’re combined. Once done, add in the coconut milk and applesauce. Mix that until fully combined and set the mix aside. In another bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, and salt. Mix well.

Add together the dry and wet ingredients and stir until combined together. Fold in the chocolate chips and scoop the dough onto the cookie sheet. Bake for 10 minutes or until the edges are golden brown. Cool on a baking sheet for fifteen minutes before putting on a cooling rack and serve.

The second recipe is an alternative to chicken nuggets, veggie nuggets. What you’ll need is one half cup of panko or gluten free breadcrumbs, one-half cup of rolled oats, one can of garbanzo beans,(make sure you don’t drain them), one teaspoon of kosher salt, one-half teaspoon of garlic powder, and one-half teaspoon of onion powder.

Place your oven rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Put the panko on a rimmed baking sheet and bake until toasted for about five minutes. Transfer that to a bowl and set it aside. Once done, line the sheet with parchment paper. Put the oats in a blender and process them as best as you can, transferring to a large bowl afterwards. Drain the chickpeas over a measuring cup, then save them and one-fourth of the liquid. Put the chickpeas in the blender and add the salt, garlic and onion powder. Pulse blend until it’s crumbly. Keep the mixture inside the blender for now.

Whisk the chickpea liquid until it’s foamy and add that to one-half cup of oat flour and put it into  the blender. Pulse until the mixture is a ball. Divide the mixture into twelve portions and shape into a nugget. Coat each in the toasted panko and place on the baking sheet. Bake what’s there until crispy, which should be 15 to 20 minutes and serve warm.

The last recipe is a red velvet vegan cheesecake. What you’ll need for the crust is one cup of almond flour, two tablespoons of cocoa, two tablespoons of maple syrup, two tablespoons of refined melted coconut oil and a dash of pink salt. For the cheesecake, you’ll need two one-fourth cups of soaked raw cashews, one and two-third cups of roasted beets, one-half cup plus one tablespoon of maple syrup, three-fourths cup of cocoa, one ounce of melted dark chocolate, one cup of melted refined coconut oil, one and one-fourth tablespoons of vanilla, one-fourth teaspoon of vanilla extract, and one-eighth teaspoon of pink salt. For the frosting, you’ll need one cup of raw soaked cashews, one tablespoon of maple syrup, two and a half teaspoons of lemon juice, a splash of vanilla, and a dash of pink salt.

First, mix the ingredients for the crust into a small bowl and press them into a parchment lined springform pan and chill. Next, for the filling, soak the cashews in a bowl of boiling water for one to two hours in room temperature water. Once done, you drain, rinse, and shake dry. Blend the cashews in a blender for three to five minutes and scrape the sides. Add in the roasted beets and blend till the mixture is smooth. Add in the remaining filling ingredients and blend that until you think it’s tasty enough. Spread this over the crust and cover the pan with a paper towel and foil. Freeze it for three hours then put it in the fridge. For the last steps and the icing, soak cashews in a bowl for one to two hours, draining, rinsing, and drying. Blend them for three to five minutes and add in the rest of the ingredients. Use this to ice the cheesecake and you’re finished.

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