Healthy Recipies

What to do with vegetable scraps if you don’t compost…

What should you do with your vegetable scraps if you don’t compost?  Eat them!  Seriously!!  Instead of placing them in a compost pile you can turn them into a rich vegetable broth. 

Often there are carrot tops, onion peels, celery bottoms, tough broccoli stems or asparagus bottoms that are not fit for putting into your actual meal.  The list is practically endless.  Place any portions, that are not rotted or too dirty to clean, in an airtight freezer bag and save the scraps until the bag is full.  It may take a week or a month to fill but when it is, just place all the frozen bits into a soup pot, cover with water, and let simmer until all the veggies are limp and colorless.  At that point you’ve extracted all the flavors out of the vegetables and into the water.  Once it’s cooled it can be strained, the solid parts can then be placed into the compost pile, and the strained liquid portioned out into freezer containers.  Common portions are two or four cups but it can be any amount you please. Label and date the containers then keep them in the freezer for up to 6 months.  You’ll never want to buy store bought broth anymore! 

Feel free to add whatever herbs and spices you love.  I personally don’t add salt or any herbs or spices because I  one day I might make a hearty Cajun chili with it and the next a light miso soup. This is a great way to use up the scraps and get a little extra nutrition into whatever you make!

Large Pot of Vegetable Broth
Rich vegetable broth made from frozen cooking scraps.

Black Bean Jalapeño Chili – Plant Based


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Black Bean Jalapeño Chili - Plant Based

Fresh cilantro and lime juice give this black bean chili recipe a clean and zesty snap! Serve with fresh chopped onions, bell/hot peppers, tomatoes, cilantro, avocados, and lime wedges for squeezing. Try using this chili as a topper on cornbread for a heartier meal.


Instructions
  1. 2 15oz cans of black beans

  2. 2 tablespoon olive oil

  3. ½ cup chopped onions

  4. ½ cup chopped bell peppers

  5. ½ cup chopped greens (spinach, kale, etc.)

  6. 1 tablespoon minced garlic

  7. 1 tablespoon seeded and chopped jalapeño peppers (or to taste)

  8. 2-4 cups vegetable stock

  9. 1 15oz can of diced tomatoes

  10. 3 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice

  11. 1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning

  12. 1 teaspoon chili powder

  13. 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  14. 1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro

  15. ½ teaspoon salt

  16. 3 turns freshly ground black pepper


Recipe Notes

Drain and rinse the beans. Heat the oil in a large skillet over high heat. Add the onions and cook until slightly browned. Add bell peppers and greens, cook 5 minutes. Add garlic, jalapeños, and beans and cook for 2 minutes. Add the stock, lime juice, Cajun seasoning, chili powder, cumin and cilantro. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer for 15-20 minutes, or until the beans and vegetables are tender. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve with toppings such as fresh chopped cilantro, bell or hot peppers, tomatoes, onions, avocado, and lime wedges for squeezing.


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Tortilla Soup

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Tortilla Soup
This recipe comes straight out of Linda's real world kitchen! Nothing fancy to see, just how it was actually made in my own little kitchen. I am lucky because I was able to use the tomatoes and peppers that were frozen from last year's garden harvest. This dish cooks to a saucy and tangy round flavor and it's filling enough for a whole meal when topped with fresh avocado, tomato, onion, and cilantro along with tortilla chips.
Tortilla Soup Bowl
Cuisine Mexican
Servings
Ingredients
Cuisine Mexican
Servings
Ingredients
Tortilla Soup Bowl
Instructions
  1. Place the tomatoes, bell peppers, mushrooms, onion, garlic, cumin powder, tomato powder, ancho chiles, cilantro, and 1 cup water or vegetable broth in a large soup pot. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium, and simmer, covered, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender, 20 to 30 minutes.
    Tortilla Soup
  2. When cool enough to handle, use a blender, food processor, or a hand blender to blend mixture until smooth. Pour the mixture back into the pot if not using the hand blender. Add the smoked paprika, chili powder, salt to taste, and 2 cups water or vegetable broth. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat to medium and simmer until the soup thickens, about 10 minutes.
  3. Add the corn and black beans and cook till heated through, about 5 minutes.
  4. To serve, garnish each serving of soup with green onions, cilantro, avocado, tomatoes, and the tortilla chips. Squeeze some lemon or lime juice on top.
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Pumpkin Pie Dip

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Pumpkin Pie Dip
For people who love pumpkin pie but don't want the hassle of making it! Here is another nutrition dense food that you will love and it will love you back. Have all the luxury of a pumpkin pie without all the fuss. Use apple and pear slices to scoop up the dip or use graham crackers. I made my own pumpkin pie spice mix using freshly grated nutmeg, ground cloves, and ground allspice (I used my mortar and pestle so I could have some spice chunks still in it). Store-bought pumpkin pie spice is fine though.
Course Dessert
Servings
Ingredients
Course Dessert
Servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and puree until smooth. Taste and adjust seasonings. (For those who like more spice add another tablespoon of pie spice or add more cinnamon.) Serve at room temperature or chill and serve cold.
  2. Serve with apple and pear slices.
Recipe Notes

*Pumpkin Pie Spice Mix

  • 2 TBS. ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. freshly ground nutmeg (use store-bought ground nutmeg if you need to but I promise once you try freshly ground, you’re never going back)
  • 1 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1 tsp. ground allspice
  • 1 tsp. ground cloves

Combine and place in airtight container.

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Feista Salad

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Feista Salad
Here is a colorful salad that can be had as a main dish when placed on brown rice or quinoa. Either way, it is a crowd-pleaser.
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Mexican
Servings
Ingredients
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Mexican
Servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients, mix well. Refrigerate for one hour before serving.
Recipe Notes

Chopped avocado, finely shredded cheddar cheese, and/or sour cream can be used as condiments

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Fiesta Warsaw

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Fiesta Warsaw
Here is a spicy sandwich that brilliantly combines the flavors of Poland with a twist of Mexican beans and tomatoes. Served on a seeded rye bread topped with fresh mushroom and a beefy tomato slice.
Course Lunch
Cuisine Neuvo
Servings
Ingredients
Course Lunch
Cuisine Neuvo
Servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients for bean spread in a food processor and mix until well blended. To assemble the sandwich spread a thick layer of bean spread onto the toasted rye bread, top with mushrooms, lettuce, and tomato.
  2. Serve open faced.
Recipe Notes

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White Bean and Prosciutto Bruschetta

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White Bean and Prosciutto Bruschetta
Don’t you love a crowd pleasing appetizer that is also healthy and quick to make? Here is a great recipe that foots the bill! The fresh thyme and white wine vinegar mix well with the flavors from the prosciutto. This has a great mouth-feel as well as flavor.
Course Appetizer
Cuisine Italian
Servings
Ingredients
Course Appetizer
Cuisine Italian
Servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Place beans in a medium bowl. Using a fork, mash the beans to a coarse puree, do not use a food processor. Blend in the vinegar, oil, thyme, salt, pepper and 2 tablespoons of the parsley.
  2. To assemble: place some of the prosciutto on each of the bruschetta and top with the bean mixture. Sprinkle the remaining ½ TBS parsley and the red onion over the beans.
  3. Serve.
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Pan Fried Gnocchi with Greens and White Beans

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Pan Fried Gnocchi with Greens and White Beans
Here is a 30-minute meal that is cooked all in one pan. It is fast, easy, healthy, and filling.
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Italian
Servings
Ingredients
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Italian
Servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Heat 2 TBS olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion and gnocchi. Cook, stirring often, until plumped and starting to brown, 5 to 7 minutes (if using pasta: precook the pasta) Transfer to a bowl.
  2. Add remaining olive oil to skillet. Add chard (or spinach) and cook, stirring, until starting to wilt, 1 to 2 minutes (if using frozen greens cook until warmed through). Stir in garlic, herbs, tomato powder, and canned tomatoes. Add beans and bring to a simmer. Stir in the gnocchi and sprinkle with mozzarella and Parmesan.
  3. Serve with a mixed green salad tossed with a vinaigrette and a slice of whole grain bread.
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Coconut Curried Sweet Potato and Chickpea Stew

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Coconut Curried Sweet Potato and Chickpea Stew
This comforting, creamy, and filling stew is satisfying and delicious. The warm flavors meld together and create a smooth richness that glides easily over the tongue.
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Indian
Servings
Ingredients
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Indian
Servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Place olive oil and onion in a large, deep skillet. Cook on medium to medium-high heat until onion is caramelized (about 15 minutes). Add garlic, spices, salt, ginger, and pepper and cook for 1-2 minutes more. Add tomatoes, chickpeas, potato, spinach, and coconut milk.
  2. Reduce heat and simmer for 30-50 minutes or until potatoes are tender, stirring occasionally. Adjust for taste (adding cinnamon, turmeric, and salt as needed). If extra heat is required add cayenne pepper.
  3. Serve over jasmine rice and garnish with chopped parsley.
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Whole Grain Waldorf Salad

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Whole Grain Waldorf Salad
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Neuvo
Servings
Ingredients
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Neuvo
Servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Combine all salad ingredients in a large bowl, set aside.
  2. Heat up juices in microwave for 30 seconds on high then stir in honey until dissolved.
  3. Add remaining ingredients to honey mixture then pour over salad. Mix well.
  4. Can be served at room temperature or chilled.
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