Category Archives: Vegetarian

Grandma Lee’s No-Bake Bars

Today I had my first meeting with my new clinical team. I wanted to make a sweet treat but didn’t want to turn on the oven. It was 88 degrees in my house! I haven’t turned on the air … yet. 

I have been wanting to make Grandma Lee’s recipe for a while now. She used to prepare it for the school where she was employed as head cook.  I can remember growing up and going to visit her at work. She’d always sneak me a cookie and some milk when I visited with grandpa. Grandma also always stored these in the freezer as well, so when we’d go visit her at home she never let us go with a cookie for the road. 

This recipe can be made into cookies or bars. I was pressed for time; therefore, went on the safe side and made bars. 

Yields: 24 bars


1/2 cup, 1 stick unsalted butter (grandma uses salted, I just used a pinch of kosher with the unsalted butter)

1/2 cup (fat free half & half) grandma uses whole milk

1 cup natural creamy peanut butter

4 Tablespoons cocoa powder ( I prefer penzeys)

1 1/2 cups quick oats

1 1/2 cup old fashioned oats (grandma uses all quick oats)

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

9 by 13 pan & lined with Parchment paper


1. Take a medium sauce pan on medium heat and add first 4 ingredients and bring to a boil.

2. Once the sauce boils, allow to boil for two minutes & then remove from heat and add oats and vanilla. 

3. Incorporate the oats into the melted mixture. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Even out the batter with a rubber spatula. Cover with sealable container or foil. Store on the counter. Do not refrigerator. 

4. Allow to harden, I waited overnight. Use the parchment paper to pull the bars out of the pan and on a cutting board, cut the bars into even pieces. 

As pictured Recipe yields 24 bars. 

If you decide to go the cookie route, this recipe will yield 30 to 36 cookies using a size 40 scooper. I would recommend dropping them on wax paper and letting them sit before storing them in a sealable container.

Enjoy !

Quinoa and Cucumber Salad


Today we are celebrating father’s day a little early since my dad has to work next weekend. I was asked to bring a salad or the vegetarian dish. As my mom would put it “something you will eat” lol. This recipe is vegan so you can be safe to make the dish for your vegan guests as well.

There are a lot of benefits to a using quinoa in dishes. I like the fact that it is a whole grain and packed with protein. I prefer using the tricolor quinoa more or less for ascetics. I know the tricolor tends to be more expensive. If you like the tricolor as well,  I will share a trick to making the pantry staple last longer. Try purchasing a large bag of the white quinoa (like the Costco size) and mixing it with a small bag of tricolor. You will be surprised how the two can extend the tricolor effect.

This recipe yields: 6 (1 cup) servings


1 1cup(s )canned low sodium black beans, drained (this is one 15 oz can)
cup canned artichoke hearts, drained and diced
cup cooked tricolor quinoa, cooled
1cup English cucumber, diced (this about 1/2 a medium)
1cup fresh lemon juice (this took about 1 and a half fresh medium lemons)
1 cup raw red bell pepper, diced (this is about one medium)
1 cup raw yellow bell pepper, diced (this is about one medium)
medium raw scallion(s)
clove(s), smallgarlic clove(s)
2Tbs Pasta Sprinkle aka Italian seasoning
1tsp kosher salt
1tsp ground  pepper
1cup Lime jalapeno balsamic vinegar
1. Place all the ingredients in a resealable container and give it a good toss.  Place the lid on the container. Store in the refrigerator to marry overnight or for a solid 1-2 hours.
2. Enjoy at your next potluck!

Roasted Yellow Pepper & Garlic Hummus

Hummus is very versatile and can be made with just about any type of bean or legume. Most traditionally though it is made with chickpeas AKA garbanzo beans. 

I like to make all kinds of variations of hummus. Generally, I like to have both garlic and roasted peppers in my hummus. 

 Yields 5 cups (20 servings; 1/4 cup)


2 cans (15 oz) of reduced sodium chickpeas, drained and reserve one 1/4 cup of liquid

7 ounces of roasted yellow peppers  (packed in water NOT oil); drained
6 cloves of garlic (I love love garlic)
3 tablespoons of tahini ( essentially Sesame seed butter)

1 tablespoon of olive oil

6 tablespoons of freshly squeezed lime juice

1 teaspoon of curry powder

1/2 teaspoon of ground cumin
1 1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon of Penzeys Arizona seasoning
1/2 teaspoon of whole coriander seeds


Place all the ingredients in the vitamix and place the device on liquid setting. Once mode complete, place contents into sealable container. Allow the contents to marry overnight for optimal flavor

Keep stored in refrigerator. 

My favorite combinations with this hummus recipe is tacos tacos, and fresh turnips.

Zesty Tajin Hummus

Yields 14 servings (1/4 cup)

Tools needed for the job:



2 cans (15 oz) of chickpeas,  drained and reserve one 1/4 cup of liquid

7 ounces of roasted red peppers and yellow or combination (packed in water NOT oil) drained

7 cloves of garlic (I love love garlic)

3 tablespoons of tahini ( essentially Sesame seed butter)

1 tablespoon of olive oil

6 tablespoons of freshly squeezed lime juice

1 teaspoon reduced sodium tajin 

1 teaspoon of curry powder

1/2 teaspoon of ground cumin

1 teaspoon of kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon of freshly ground pepper

1/2 teaspoon of whole coriander seeds


Place all the ingredients in the vitamix and place the device on liquid setting. Once mode complete, place contents into sealable container.  Allow the contents to marry overnight.

Keep stored in refrigerator. 

My favorite combinations with hummus are #1 Pizza! Other favorites are snap peas, carrots, wasa crackers, whole grain corn and quinoa cakes,  & added to kale salad! 

Sweet & Salty Whole Grain Bars

I planned a very big trip this weekend. I went to Georgia to pick up my baby girl Lucy. My second cousin breeds Labs and I have wanted one of her’s for years. 

I am starting a new chapter in my life, and I am looking forward to the road ahead with her. She already has stolen my heart. 

I made these bars to take on my adventure to Georgia. I never like to go anywhere empty handed. These tasty treats turned out delicious. Even my Cousin said they taste really good for looking like bird food. 😂


24 bars 


9 by 13 glass Pyrex pan 

Parchment paper

3/4 cup honey

1 cup crunchy peanut butter

1 1/4 steel oats

1 cup pretzels pieces (crumbs)

1 1/3 cup Millet

1 cup dark chocolate chips

1 1/2 cups Puffed barley cereal

Pre directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
  • Parchment paper line 9 by 13 glass pan. Set aside 


1. In a large bowl mix the honey and peanut butter. Microwave in 30 second intervals. Until the batter is very smooth and easy to mix. It only took me 1 minute to reach the consistency I was going for. 

2. In a separate bowl while the peanut butter softens. Place all the remaining ingredients into a medium bowl mix well. Add the dry ingredients to the honey/peanut butter blend. Stir until combine. 

3. Pour the batter into the parchment paper lined baking dish. Spread the batter evenly. I like to use another piece of parchment paper to do this. 

4. Place in preheated oven for 17-20 minutes. 

5. Remove from oven allow to cool and cover place in refrigerator over night with lid. 

6. In the morning remove the bars using the parchment. Place them on a cutting board. Cut into 24 bars using sharp knife. Place in snack size ziplock bags or place back in the glass dish and store in refrigerator. 


Cashew Lover’s Trail Mix

Any trail mix connoisseur will love.. love this blend of nuts, seeds, and everything in between. Especially all you cashew lovers in the crowd


71 oz sealable container 

1 cup pepita seeds

1 cup cocoa almonds

1 1/4 cup mixed dried fruit, no added sugar (blueberries, cherries & cranberries)
1 1/2 cup roasted salted sunflower seeds

2 1/2 cups unsalted whole cashews

1 3/4 cup of dark chocolate pretzels nibs ( I found at Marshall’s♥️)

1 cup of lightly salted peanuts 


1. Layer the ingredients separately in the container. Make sure to leave some room at the top. 

2. Secure the lid on top of the container and give it a good shake. Gently shake until all nuts, seeds, and everything in between is well incorporated throughout. 

Yields: 71 oz of trail mix and saves you $. Just say NO to store bought and your wallet will be smiling 😁

Elvis Overnight Oats

My all time favorite combo is Peanut Butter and Banana. Honestly I could eat this combo for every meal and snack. I usually enjoy a peanut butter and banana sandwich for lunch but ran across this concoction since I had an overripe banana lingering in the kitchen. 


1 small banana ripe

1TB PB2, chocolate 

1 1/2 teaspoon chia seeds

1 truvia packet

3/8 cup old fashioned oats

1/2 unsweetened vanilla almond milk

1 1/2 cup Water (I like mine watery, if you prefer yours thick omit)


1. Place the peeled banana in an 18 oz mason jar. Mash the banana with a fork. 

2. Add the next 4 ingredients into the jar, mix well. 

3. Finally add the liquid ingredients (almond milk and water) into the banana purée. Place the lid and seal on the jar and give it a good shake. Place the jar in the refrigerator overnight to allow the ingredients to marry.

4. When ready for breakfast, give the jar another good shake and remove seal and lid to enjoy. If you are in a hurry, you can drink it through a straw in the way to work. 

Roasted Cashew Oat Bars with Dark Chocolate Drizzle

My hubby loves cashews, last night we made ginger cashew chicken and we had some leftover cashews. I have been wanting to try cashews in a bar for a while now. He will be heading back to the burgh in a few a days so I thought I make these for him to snack on during his commute. Hopefully they will hold him over so he doesn’t have to make too many stops at Sheetz. 🙈

This recipe yields 12 bars

1 1/2 cups raw whole cashews, unsalted (divided); chop roughly 

2 1/2 cups old fashioned oats

2 Tablespoons hemp seeds

3 Tablespoons canola oil

2 Tablespoons milled flaxseed

1/2 cup honey

1/2 cup raw sugar

1/2 teaspoon ground Vietnamese Cinnamon 

3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 cup dried cranberries, low sugar

1/3 cup Dark Chocolate chips (I used Ghirardelli), optional 


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
  • Take a glass 8 by 8 baking dish and line with parchment paper. Set aside.


1. Place 1/2 cup of the cashews and all the oats and hemp seeds on a parchment paper lined 1/2 sheet baking pan. Bake for 10 minutes and toss with wooden spoon and bake for 5-10 more minutes (until oats and cashews turn golden brown). 

2. In the meantime place remaining cashews, canola oil and flaxseed in food processor and purée until nut butter consistency. Set mixture aside. 

3. While the oats continue to bake, place a 2 quart sauce pan on medium heat, add honey, raw sugar, cinnamon and salt. Allow contents to heat for 4-5 minutes, remove from heat and add cashew butter mixture. Stir to combined. 

4. Once the oats have baked to desired golden hue, using parchment paper siphon the baked contents into large glass bowl, add the dried cranberries. Pour warm liquid cashew mixture over oat mixture. Fold all the ingredients together with spatula. Make sure to incorporate all ingredients together until there are no signs of dry residue. 

5. Take mixture and press into prepared baking dish. Press flat & even using another piece of parchment paper. 

6. Place the dish in the center rack of the oven and bake 10 minutes. Remove from heat and set on wire rack and allow to cool & harden (about an hour). Using the sides of the excess parchment pull out of the pan and set on cutting board and cut into 12 bars. Place the chocolate in a microwave safe bowl and heat for 30 seconds and stir and continue to heat in 30 second intervals, stirs after each interval until smooth.

7.  Place the chocolate in a snack size ziplock bag and clip the end of the bag with food sissors and drizzle away. 

Blueberry Almond Fresh Toasttins

These are very easy to prepare. They are perfect for a quick grab and go breakfast item. Bonus they also freeze well. This is a spin off my original post French Toasttins

Yields: 10 Toasttins 


3 eggs

1 TB pure vanilla extract

1 teaspoon ground Vietnamese Cinnamon 

1 cup vanilla unsweetened almond milk

2 Tablespoon pure maple syrup 

2 Tablespoons dried blueberries 

2 Tablespoons sliced almonds

1/2 teaspoon vanilla sugar

10 slices of light whole grain bread heels (35-45 calories a slice), cubed 


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Generously cooking spray 10 muffin vessels in muffin tin. Set aside. 

2. In a large bowl whisk together the first 5 ingredients. 

3. Toss in the cubed bread. Fold with rubber spatula. Make sure the bread soaks up all the liquid. 
4. Take an 1/3 cup measuring device and portion out a heaping amount of the bread batter into prepared muffin tin. Sprinkle with blueberries, almonds, and vanilla sugar. Place the pan in center rack in oven. 

5. Bake for 25 minutes. Enjoy as is or add additional maple syrup or sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Peanut Butter Banana Chocolate Chip Bars

I’ve been so lucky this week my sister, and nephew have been keeping me company down in North Carolina. Today, I was able to take off from work to spend the entire day with them. I prepared them these bars for breakfast. These banana bars are a spin off of your traditional banana bread or muffins.

I enjoy this recipe because it is super easy to prepare and clean up! Not mention another great way to use up ripe or frozen bananas.

This recipe was adapted from TOH Banana Squares. 

Prep time: 10 minutes 

Bake time: 35 minutes

This recipe yields: 12-15 bars

2 eggs, separate whites and yolks

1/3 canola oil

1/3 cup crunchy peanut butter

1 1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 cup mashed bananas; about 3 medium  (I used frozen)

1/4 cup low fat buttermilk

1 1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate chips (optional)


  • Line 9 by 13 inch pan with parchment paper and set aside.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees


1. In a stand mixer, beat egg whites until soft peaks form; pour into small bowl and set aside. In same stand mixer bowl cream peanut butter, canola oil, and sugar. Beat in egg yolks; mix to combind. Add the bananas and mix well.

2. Combine flour and baking soda; add to creamed banana batter alternate the flour with buttermilk, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla. Fold in egg whites. Lastly, fold in chocolate chips.

2. Pour the batter into a prepared 13-in. x 9-in. baking dish. Bake at 350° for 35 minutes. I did use a dark metal pan, which does effect the bake time. Cool pan on wire rack before cutting into bars.

3. After the bars have cooled completely store the bars in an air tight container in the refrigerator.