Sunday, July 22, 2012

4-Day Meal Plan

I have a short work week this week because my son is in the state swim meet this weekend.  So I only did a 4-day meal plan, but promised a couple friends I would post a few more meal plan ideas. 

For anyone new to the blog,  I plan the morning snack, lunch and afternoon snack for my daycare kids. The rest of the week is for my family.  (I was informed by my two older day care kids that I haven't baked enough lately, so I put in some muffins and banana bread for them this week. I try to spoil them as much as possible.) 

I always write in breakfast choices just so we know what we have on hand, but breakfast is usually made to order around here.  We always have fresh blueberries or other fruit along with breakfast, so I don't write that in.  I offer milk (soy) with all meals and water in-between. I also keep a veggie container on hand to add to all meals or for extra snacks.

The daycare kids eat mostly vegetarian meals and my family meals are almost always vegan (my kids might eat a little cheese now and again).  I make the pancakes, waffles, muffins and granola homemade and keep them on hand or in the freezer for snacks and quick breakfasts. This week, everything except the bagels and yogurt is vegan.  

Lastly, with all the fresh produce available right now our noodles, primavera and salads are all made with fresh veggies.  I sometimes use frozen veggies, but like to use fresh whenever possible.  Happy Vegan Eating!

Morning Snack
Afternoon Snack
Freezer waffles (homemade) or Cereal

Apple slices/P.B
Oatmeal Pancakes with fresh fruit
Choc Chip Muffins
Mongolian Tofu and Broccoli, Brown Rice, Edamame
 Make extra pancakes for freezer
Muffins or Bagels

Pretzel Sticks and Raisins

Alfredo Noodles with mixed veggies, fresh fruit
Corn on the Cob, Pitas with Chickpea Salad
Bake Banana Bread for tomorrow
Cereal or Pancakes

Picnic:  PB&J, fresh fruit, veggie dippers
Banana Bread
Jambalaya with Red Beans, Kale
Waffles or Cereal

Yogurt w/granola

Pasta Primavera, Garlic Bread, Zucchini Boats
Rice Crispies Treats
Black Beans over Polenta, Spinach Salad

Saturday, July 14, 2012


I was looking through past posts this morning trying to find my favorite recipe for waffles.  But it wasn't here.  I am really shocked by that because this is a standard in our house.  I apologize for not getting it up here sooner!  Don't hate me.

We make a double batch of waffles every couple of weeks.  We eat a few and then freeze the rest for "toaster" waffles during the week.  I also cut some in strips and freeze them to use as teethers for the little ones.

We make different varieties, but always use the basic waffle recipe listed here.  I also mix mine in the blender to eliminate the texture of the oats that is sometimes a turn-off for the kids.  My husband is also particular about "chunky" waffles.  So I blend these until smooth before cooking them.  If I make a batch for just me and my kids, I will stir the ingredients in a bowl.  Some of us aren't as picky about the texture of oats.

You'll see there is very little fat added, and no added sugar except for fresh fruit.  Most people add powdered sugar or syrup to waffles, so added sugar is really just over kill.  These are sweet enough with the fruit in them that the kids will toast one up and run off with it without adding syrup or anything at all.

Waffle irons differ, so you'll have to follow the directions on your particular model.  My biggest piece of advice is to spray your iron with non-stick spray since I do have very little fat in this recipe.  You wouldn't want them to stick.

Add ins are optional, but I like to mix it up a bit so we aren't always eating plain old waffles.  I like to fold in blueberries or other berries, pecans, almonds, banana, shredded apple, etc. etc.  I also like to use fruit toppings.  Today I made a simple banana oat waffle because I needed some teethers for a little one and he hasn't been exposed to too many foods just yet.  My favorite is blueberry-maple-pecan, the kids love banana-chocolate chip, and my hubby likes just plain old boring waffles.  The apple with cinnamon is pretty popular with my daycare kids.  Sometimes we dip them in warm applesauce instead of syrup. Yum.

WAFFLE MIX (makes about twelve 4" waffles)
1 1/2 c. flour (I use whole-wheat)
1 c. oats
1 T. baking powder
1/2 t. salt
1 3/4 - 2 c. unsweetened/unflavored soy milk
2 T. vegan butter, melted OR 2 T. oil
1 t. vanilla

Add all ingredients to blender and process until smooth.  Follow waffle iron directions for cooking.

ADD-INS  (use one or more and stir into waffle mix)
1/2 t. cinnamon
1/4 t. nutmeg
1/4 c. real maple syrup
1 banana
1 apple, shredded or diced small
1 c. fresh or frozen blueberries
1 c. fresh or frozen strawberries (or other berries) chopped
1/4 c. mini chocolate chips
1/2 c. chopped walnuts, pecans or other nuts

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Vegan Mesquite Sweet Potato Patties (GF)

One of my day care kids said, "These taste like sweet potato fries made into a burger!"

I made a batch of these the other day and froze the extras.  Today I put them on a baking sheet and cooked them from frozen for about 10 minutes in a 375 degree oven.  Really good texture this way.  I think I will make a large batch and keep them frozen for easy use.
1 c. brown rice, cooked and cooled
1 c. sweet potato (baked or steamed, peeled)
1/2 c. onion, diced
1/2 t. salt
2 t. paprika
1 clove garlic, minced
1 t. mesquite seasoning
1/2 t. fresh cracked black pepper
1/2-3/4 c. brown rice flour
oil for cooking

In a food processor, combine rice, sweet potato, onion and all seasonings.  Pulse until blended and no large chunks of potato or onion remain.  (Some rice may be intact.)  Carefully stir in brown rice flour slowly just until the mixture is firm enough to form patties.  The amount may differ depending on the water content in the potatoes. 

In a fry pan, fry potato patties in a small amount of oil over medium heat for about 4 minutes per side.  Do not flip them until they come off the pan easily.  They should be nicely browned.

NOTES: I found it easier to make thinner patties and then to add two to a sandwich.  Otherwise the flour doesn't cook all the way out and they taste flour-y. (Yes, that's a word. No, you don't need to look it up.  Just trust me.)  Be sure to let them cook all the way through, but know that the sugars in the potatoes burn quickly once they start to brown.

I liked these served with pickles and raw onion and BBQ sauce.  My family liked them like burgers.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Vegan Butternut Squash Pizza

Even my husband liked this pizza, and he's not really a squash fan.  I loved it.  I think it would be great as an appetizer for parties.  Just cut into small squares. Very yummy! And I'm not just saying that because I'm the cook.

1 butternut squash, steamed until soft and sliced or diced
1 white or red onion, thinly sliced
4 T. olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 T. fresh or 1 t. dried rosemary
2 T. fresh or 1 t. dried thyme
Sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper, to taste
Your favorite pizza crust
Vegan cheese, optional
Crushed red pepper, optional

Place thinly sliced onion in a fry pan with 2 T. olive oil.  Cook slowly over medium-low to low heat about 10-15 minutes until onions are caramelized and only slightly browned.

Placed rosemary, thyme and minced garlic in remaining 2 T. olive oil.  Brush about 1/2 mixture over pizza crust.  Top with squash and hot onions.  If adding vegan cheese and/or crushed red pepper, do that now.  Drizzle remaining olive oil on top and cook pizza according to crust directions.

(I used a pre-made, whole-wheat crust.  I also used a little Daiya vegan cheese.  I microwaved the squash early in the day so it was ready to use when needed.  Next time I will roast the squash for a little better flavor. Onions could be made ahead of time as well.)

Friday, July 6, 2012

Yogurt Parfait

My breakfast this morning was a yogurt parfait.  Fresh peach and blueberries layered with soy yogurt and my own homemade granola. It was a bowl of yummy goodness.  I love eating vegan!

Good Morning, Everyone!!