Warm Brussel Sprout & Broccoli Salad (paleo, vegan, & gluten free)

Brussels and Broccoli Salad 03

I love salad!  Most of my lunches consist of some sort of salad, especially in the summer.  There is something about hot weather that makes me not want to eat piping hot food.  I don’t know what it is, but I prefer to have casseroles and things of that nature when it’s a little cooler.

For lunch I’ll just throw together some veggies and have leftovers on the side or just have the salad.  A few weeks ago I had a fridge full of brussel sprouts and broccoli and needed to whip something up for lunch. I needed it to cook quickly, so I chopped everything up and threw it in the pan with a little oil, red wine vinegar, and spices.  I topped it with dried cranberries and chopped almonds for some added flavor and texture.  I have made this Brussel Sprout & Broccoli Salad a few times since then, because it’s so good!

It also makes a great base for adding in other ingredients.  So far I’ve made it with chopped butternut squash, bacon, and chicken.  The cranberries can be replaced as well I’m sure.  Maybe with raisins or grapes.  Let me know if you change it up!



1 tsp cooking oil

8 oz brussel sprouts, chopped

2 cups chopped broccoli

1 clove garlic

4 Tbs red wine vinegar

1 tsp olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

1/4 cup chopped or slivered almonds

1/4 cup dried cranberries



Heat oil in a medium pan on medium heat.  Add in the garlic, brussel sprouts, and broccoli.  Cook on medium/low heat for about 5 minutes, just so the veggies aren’t completely raw.  Stir in red wine vinegar,olive oil, salt and pepper, and remove from heat.  Place in serving dish and top with cranberries and almonds.

I always have whole almonds on hand so I just chopped them up, but slivered almonds work well if you want to avoid the chopping!

Brussels and Broccoli Salad 02


Brussels and Broccoli Salad 01

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Chocolate Hazelnut Bites (vegan, paleo, & gluten Free)

Chocolate Hazelnut Bites 01

The first time I tasted Nutella, I was a kid at my aunt’s house.  Some relatives had smuggled some over from Germany and I thought it was the greatest thing ever created!  Now that I’m sort of grown, I don’t really appreciate all of the sugar and unnecessary ingredients.  I occasionally get the Justin’s brand which is on the healthier side and you can actually see the little pieces of hazelnuts in it.

I wanted something sweet the other day, and suddenly started craving Nutella.  Since that’s not happening, I mixed a little cashew butter, honey, and cocoa powder together for a quick fix.  Then it hit me, chocolate hazelnut bites!  How amazing would those flavors taste with some hazelnuts mixed in?  That’s exactly what they are; amazing! These chocolate hazelnut bites taste like a wholesome version of Nutella without all of the sugar.

I realize that I caught the late train with this whole “Bite” idea, but now that I’ve discovered them, the possibilities are endless!  I’m pondering something with cashews and cardamom for the next batch.



1 cup cashews

1/3 cup hazelnuts

1 Tbs cashew butter

1 tsp honey

3 Tbs cocoa powder



Place all of the ingredients in a food processor and blend until it becomes like a mold-able paste.  Roll into round bites and place on parchment paper.  I sprinkled them with a little cocoa powder and crushed hazelnuts, but it’s not necessary.  They are perfectly delightful just as they are.  You can also refrigerate them if you prefer them cold, but they kept well in an airtight container on the kitchen counter as well.



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Stuffed Bell Peppers (vegan, paleo, & gluten free)

Stuffed Bell Peppers 03

I was doing a sort of cleanse a couple weeks ago and there were no carbs allowed for a week.  Yup, a whole week!  It was strictly protein and veggies.  Now I know this is normal for many, but not for me.  I don’t eat much bread or rice, but I NEED my fruit!

We don’t eat meat in our house on Monday, and usually I make lentils or something involving rice or pasta.  I noticed that one of the meal suggestions for the week was stuffed peppers with ground beef.  I was a vegetarian years ago and with being gluten intolerant you get very used to removing certain ingredients from recipes.  You know, burger with no bun, wrap with no tortilla, substituting flours, etc.  The list goes on and on.

I tried to pack quite a few veggies in there and they came out tasting really good!  So I made them again last night for Monday night dinner.  They can be topped with a little dairy or vegan cheese if you like.  For all the carnivores out there, sausage, ground beef, or ground turkey would make a tasty addition!  If you use a seasoned sausage like Italian or something, just leave out the oregano and basil, and add less salt.



1 onion, diced

4 cloves garlic, crushed

6 bell peppers, any color

1 eggplant, diced

1 zucchini, diced

4 oz mushrooms, diced

14.5 oz can organic diced tomatoes

3 Tbs tomato paste

2 tsp dried oregano

1 tsp dried basil

salt and pepper to taste



In a large skillet, saute the chopped onion and garlic until onions are translucent.  Add in the rest of the veggies, the diced tomatoes, tomato paste, and spices.  Simmer for 15 minutes then remove from heat.

Preheat the oven to 350* F.  Cut the tops off of the bell peppers and clean out the seeds.  Fill the peppers and pack them full.  Place the tops back on each one and put toothpick through opposite sides on top of the pepper. This will help keep the tops of the peppers on while they’re in the oven.

Place peppers in an oven safe dish and bake for 30 to 40 min.  Let cool for a few minutes since they’ll be piping hot and dig in!

Stuffed Bell Peppers 01

Stuffed Bell Peppers



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