Asparagus and Arugula Salad

Seriously, cold pasta salads are fabulous in the summer. As always, this is easy and delicious. What you will need:

1 bunch fresh asparagus, ends twisted off (discard) and stems broken into desired size – steam to desired softness

1 package pasta, I used a gluten-free pasta – cook with salt to give a salty flavor to dish

1/3 cup toasted pine nuts – if you buy raw pine nuts like I do, quickly toast in a pan (they burn easily)

Juice and zest from 1 medium lemon

1 TBS olive oil 

1 TBS rice vinegar 

2 generous handfuls fresh baby arugula 

2/3 cup Daiya shredded mozzarella

2 bunches fresh basil, large leaves torn into smaller pieces

Black pepper to taste

Place the lemon zest and juice, olive oil, rice vinegar, and pepper in a large bowl. Stir. Add everything but the cheese and stir. If the pasta is still warm, the arugula will wilt, which is a wonderful texture change in the dish. Chill at least an hour and stir in cheese just before serving. Yummers!


Cold Quinoa Salad

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An upcoming potluck after work required me to think ahead on what to take that would be easy to make and transport. Looking around my pantry and fridge, I came up with a cold quinoa salad that was a big hit. What you will need:

1 cup uncooked red quinoa

2 bell peppers of different colors, I used red and yellow, diced

10 oz sweet corn

1 can artichoke hearts, sliced thin

3 green onions, sliced into small circles

1 TBS walnut oil

2 TBS rice wine vinegar

1 tsp liquid aminos

1/2 tsp black pepper

Cook quinoa according to package directions. Place all ingredients in a large bowl and stir until well combined. Cover and place in refrigerator for at least 8 hours. Yummers!


Power Meal Bowl

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I have a lunch meeting every couple of weeks and the team always brings food to share. Unfortunately, they are not great at bringing something vegan. I appreciate their effort, but I also have to be prepared. One day I took this ready-made salad and was not disappointed. All the ingredients are kept separate until I combined them, so everything was crunchy and fresh. If there is no time to make a salad or stop at a salad bar, this is a wonderful alternative.

Pasta Salad

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This is one of my favorite summer recipes. What you will need:

1 package pasta. I tend to go with a quinoa pasta (gluten free) and this was a veggie blend.

2 different colored bell peppers, like red and orange, diced

3 to 4 green onions, diced

1 can black olives, pits removed, sliced

1 can artichoke hearts, cut into smaller pieces

2 TBS olive oil

1/4 tsp sea salt

1/4 tsp black pepper

1/8 tsp chili powder

1 TBS dried basil

Cook pasta according to directions to al dente. Drain and place in a bowl with all ingredients. Stir. Can serve now or let chill. Yummers!

Cabbage Salad

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The CSA kept giving us these beautiful heads of green cabbage. I decided to make a slaw of sorts and it turned out amazing. Here is what you will need:

1/2 a head of a small to medium green cabbage or one tiny cabbage, shredded

1 green bell pepper, diced

1 small red onion, thinly sliced

1 ear of sweet corn, the corn cut off

1/4 cup rice vinegar

1/4 cup olive oil

1 tsp sugar, I used coconut sugar because it’s what I had

1/2 tsp fresh dill, chopped

Sea salt and black pepper to taste

Put it all in a glass bowl and stir. Cover, place in fridge, and let ferment at least 8 hours; overnight if possible. Remove from fridge and stir again. Taste to make sure the flavor is just right then serve. Enjoy!

Not Chicken Salad

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This is such an easy recipe for busy days or picnics in the park. The salad can be eaten over greens, part of a larger salad, or in a sandwich. What you will need:

1 package of Trader Joe’s Chickenless Crispy Tenders

1/4 cup almond slivers

1/4 cup red seedless grapes sliced in half

1/4 cup Veganaise

Bake the Chickenless Crispy Tenders according to the package directions. I bake them longer to make sure they are crispy. Once done, cut into smaller pieces and place in a small mixing bowl with all the other ingredients. Stir until everything is mixed well. Enjoy!


Avocado Salad

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Spring is here! Spring is here! I’m so excited. This means my CSA is starting back up and I get local yummy fresh vegetables! I will write about CSAs for Thursday.

I love avocados almost as much as I love spring. Okay, I’m lying. I love avocados as much as I love spring. When they are abundant and ripe, I super enjoy this simple salad.

What you will need:

1 ripe avocado

1 ripe tomato, vine ripened or roma both work well if not pulling from a garden

1 medium cucumber

The juice from a fresh lemon

Cut avocado in half and remove the pit. I like to dice the meat of the avocado right in the skin and then scoop it out into my bowl. Dice the tomato and add to bowl. Dice up enough cucumber to balance the other two ingredients and add to bowl. Squeeze in as much lemon juice as you like. If lemon is not your favorite flavor, add just enough juice to not let the avocado turn brown. Stir and enjoy!