Quick Nori Rolls with Cucumber and Avocado

Nori wraps are what are used in sushi making, but they can also be used to make delicious rolls with a variety of fillings and ingredients. Rolling nori takes a bit of practice, but it has a wonderful end product. My third grade brownie troop made nori rolls at a girl scout meeting, so it’s certainly do-able!



4 sheets nori seaweed (available at the health food store)

1 lb. cucumbers, thinly sliced with a mandolin slicer

toasted sesame seeds

ground chili powder (optional)

1 ripe avocado, sliced into thin wedges

3 1/2 ounces tofu, cooked chicken, or fish (raw and super fresh, or cooked), cut into strips

long-stem sprouts or sprouted seeds

soy sauce, for serving

Optional additions:

simple tahini sauce

raw cashew cheese or other spread

pink radishes, thinly sliced with a mandolin slicer

large handful of small salad leaves, such as baby spinach or baby kale

fresh herbs, especially shiso or cilantro

1/2 ripe mango, sliced into strips

1/2 small jicama, peeled and cut into strips

See the entire recipe and directions at the Chocolate & Zucchini recipe blog.

Vanilla Pumpkin Seed Bites (Only 4 Ingredients!)

Pumpkin seeds are a great source of healthy fats as well as iron, magnesium, and zinc. They’re delicious to eat right out of the bag, but this simple recipe is extra delicious, and makes pumpkin seeds into a wonderful, slightly sweet snack! This recipe is vegan, Paleo, and grain free!



115 g 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds

1 tsp vanilla extract

2 tsp maple syrup

2 tsp coconut sugar

Water, boiled

See the entire recipe and directions at the Wallflower Kitchen!

Marinated Lentil Salad

I am a bean lover, and lentils are one of my very favorites. They’re quick cooking when compared to other legumes and are low in calories but high in plant protein, iron, folate, and fiber! This delicious salad is a great way to serve them, and it’s especially nice since it stores well.




  • 1 lemon

  • 1/4 cup olive oil 

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced 

  • 1/2 Tbsp dried oregano 

  • 1/2 tsp salt

  • Freshly Cracked Pepper


  • 1 cup dry brown lentils 

  • 1/2 bunch parsley 

  • 1 pint grape tomatoes 

  • 1/4 small red onion 

  • 2 oz feta, crumbled (if you’re dairy free like me, it’s still delish without the feta)

See the entire recipe and directions at Budget Bytes.

Vegan Thai Soup

This comforting soup is comforting and absolutely delicious, plus it’s vegan and keto friendly!

  • 1/2 julienned red onion

  • 1/2 julienned red bell pepper

  • 3 sliced mushrooms

  • 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped

  • 1/2-inch piece of ginger root (about 1 cm), peeled and finely chopped

  • 1/2 Thai chili, finely chopped*

  • 2 cups vegetable broth or water (500 ml)

  • 1 14-ounce can coconut milk (400 ml)

  • 1 tbsp coconut, cane or brown sugar

  • 10 oz tofu, cubed (275 g)

  • 1 tbsp tamari or soy sauce

  • The juice of half a lime

  • A handful of fresh cilantro, chopped

See the entire recipe and directions at the Simple Vegan Blog.

Hummus and Cucumber Appetizer Bites with Black Sesame Seeds

This appetizer recipe is light and delicious and also fits in with just about any special diets your guests may have: gluten free, paleo, low carb, vegan, dairy free… you name it. Plus they’re easy to put together and look rather gourmet on a platter. It’s a win win!



cucumbers, as many as desired (One large cucumber will make 10-14 appetizer bites)

hummus (use purchased hummus, or see links to hummus recipes in the recipe links below)

black or white sesame seeds

See the entire recipe and directions at Kalyn’s Kitchen.

Sticky Sesame Vegan Cauliflower Wings (GF)

This is an amazing appetizer that most people won’t believe uses cauliflower! It’s absolutely delicious!


1 small head cauliflower

1/2 cup all purpose gluten free flour*

1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (1/2 if you want it very spicy, leave out if you don't like spice)

1 cup crispy gluten free panko bread crumbs (seasoned with salt and pepper) OR toast your breadcrumbs slightly before using


4 tablespoons maple syrup

2 tablespoons liquid aminos

1/2 teaspoon sesame seeds

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

3/4 teaspoon ground ginger

chopped scallions & sesame seeds, for garnish

NOTE: If you aren’t gluten free, feel free to substitute for regular breadcrumbs and flour.

See the entire recipe and directions at Jessica in the Kitchen.

Vegetarian Chili

This fantastic vegetarian chili makes super flavorful and healthy meatless meal! Serve it with cornbread for an extra treat!



2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 bell pepper, diced
1 large carrot, finely diced
1 large stalk celery, finely diced
1 jalapeño, diced (remove seeds if you don't like spice)
2 tbsp parsley, finely chopped (optional)
2½ tbsp chili powder
½ tbsp cocoa powder
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp sugar
¼ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp salt + black pepper, to taste
1-28oz can diced tomatoes, with juices
¼ cup tomato paste
1-15oz can pinto or black beans, drained and rinsed
1-15oz can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed

See the entire recipe and directions at Hummusapian.

Confetti Quinoa and Chickpea Lettuce Wraps (Vegan)

This makes an absolutely gorgeous, healthy lunch! Replacing tortillas with lettuce leaves reduces your carb load and adds an extra boost of health!



2 cups cooked quinoa
1½ cups cooked chickpeas
1 cup diced bell pepper
1 cup shredded kale
1 cup diced carrots
1 cup diced celery
2 tbsp chopped chives
2 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp hemp oil (olive, avocado, flax, or sacha inchi oils are also fine)
1 tsp dijon mustard
Sea salt to taste
Black pepper to taste
16 romaine lettuce leaves

Read the entire recipe and directions at The Full Helping.

Curried Cauliflower Rice Kale Soup

The cauliflower in this soup helps to make this a nice, substantial soup while still being low in calories. Plus the recipe is both Paleo and vegan!



5-6 cups of cauliflower florets (about 3-4 cups when "riced'). See notes.
2- 3 tbsp curry powder or curry seasoning (turmeric should is usually included in the curry seasoning/powder)
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp sea salt
2-3 tbsp olive oil for roasting
3/4 cup red onion chopped
1 tsp minced garlic
2 tsp olive oil or avocado oil
8 kale leaves with stems removed and chopped
2 cups (5oz) chopped carrots
4 cups broth (vegetable or chicken if not vegan)
1 cup almond milk or coconut milk (the drinking kind works best and is smoother).
1/2 tsp red pepper or chili flakes (use less if you don't want as spicy)
1/2 tsp black pepper
salt to taste after cooking

See the entire recipe and directions at Cotter Crunch.

Low Carb Zucchini Lasagna (dairy free)

Zucchini is such a versatile ingredient, and it makes a fantastic substitute for lasagna noodles in this recipe for a delicious, grain free meal!


3 medium zucchini
2 1/2 cups tomato pasta sauce
14 oz firm tofu
1 tsp salt, plus extra for the zucchini
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/3 cup nutritional yeast or parmesan, optional
1 cup shredded mozzarella (Daiya vegan shreds are a fantastic dairy free option)

To make this recipe even easier, you can substitute Tofutti's "Better Than Ricotta" that we have available in our store's refrigerated section.  

See the entire recipe and directions at Chocolate Covered Katie.


Corn and Summer Vegetable Sauté

This is a perfect summer dish that uses veggies fresh from the farmer's market!  


1 tablespoon canola oil
1/2 cup chopped green onions (about 4)
1 garlic clove, minced
1 cup sliced fresh okra (about 4 ounces)
1 cup chopped red bell pepper (about 1)
1 finely chopped seeded jalapeño pepper
1 cup fresh corn kernels (about 2 ears)
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1/3 cup minced fresh cilantro
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

See the entire recipe and directions at My Recipes.

Simple German Cucumber Salad

This salad is light and tasty and is a snap to put together!  It's a welcome addition to any summer meal!

  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons white or apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 large cucumbers, peeled, very thinly sliced
  • 1/2 sweet onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh dill weed, chopped (or 1 1/2 teaspoons dried)

See the entire recipe and directions at Fearless Fresh.

Zucchini Burrito Boats

These are low carb and delicious, and are easily made dairy free!


  • 4 large zucchini
  • 1 (15 ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup cooked brown rice
  • 1 cup salsa (use your preferred level of spiciness)
  • 1 red bell pepper, cored and diced
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup corn kernels
  • 1 jalapeno (or poblano pepper), cored and diced
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped
  • salt to taste
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar/monterey jack cheese or Daiya shreds for a dairy free option

Read the entire recipe and directions at Make Thyme for Health.

Black Bean Mushroom Burgers

This recipe is from this month's issue of Energy Times.  I'm excited to make it since it sounds a little different from the standard veggie burger recipe!

1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
1 medium white onion, diced small
1 lb button or Cremini mushrooms, chopped small 
1 cup dry black beans cooked until tender and strained or 2 (15 oz)
cans of black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup dry farro, simmered in 3 cups water until tender and drained
1 tbsp garlic powder 
2 tbsp reduced-sodium soy sauce
A few dashes hot sauce 
1 tsp liquid smoke
Kosher salt and freshly ground black 
pepper to taste
2 tbsp high-heat oil like grapeseed or safflower

Roberto Martin says, “My nine-year-old son claims he hates mushrooms…but he loves these burgers. The secret? Black beans mixed with mushrooms and farro for a meaty texture—without all the additives and junk that’s in some packaged veggie burgers.” These patties can be made up to two days ahead of time and stored in the fridge or freezer until ready to use, or cook up a double batch and freeze half.

1. Heat a sauté pan or skillet over high heat. Add the oil and wait until it shimmers, about 30 seconds
2. Add onions and stir with a wooden spoon until they turn golden brown, about 8 minutes. Add mushrooms and sauté 5 minutes more or until the pan is nearly dry. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the mixture to cool.
3. Place the beans and half the farro in a food processor with the garlic powder, soy sauce, hot sauce and liquid smoke, and pulse until well combined. Scoop into a large bowl. Stir in the onions and remaining farro. Taste and season with salt and pepper. 
4. Scoop a half-cup of the bean mixture and shape into a patty. Repeat until all the mixture is used. 
5. Heat a skillet and add 1 tbsp of high-heat oil, place four patties in the skillet and cook over medium-high heat for about 2 minutes per side. (Use a strong metal spatula to gently flip the patties.) Transfer to a sheet tray or large plate. Add the remaining tbsp of oil to the pan and cook the remaining 4 patties. Serve warm with standard hamburger fixings or serve as is over grilled asparagus or roasted broccoli. 

Note: If you want to grill the veggie burgers, cook them first as instructed above and allow them to cool on a sheet tray; then grill them until warm inside, about 2 minutes per side. Cooking them in a pan dries them out a little bit and forms a crust, which will allow them to stay together on the grill.

Yield: 8 burgers


Powerhouse Bulgur Salad with Orange Vinaigrette

Bulgur is a wonderful, quick cooking, high fiber, and high protein grain!  


1 cup bulgur
2 cups water
2 cups torn kale
1 apple, chopped
½ cup chopped pecans
¼ cup dried cranberries
1 chopped avocado (optional)
¼ cup crumbled goat cheese (optional)

For the vinaigrette:
Juice of 1 orange
3 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon honey
1 teaspoon minced ginger
½ teaspoon salt
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley

To see the complete recipe and directions go to the Neighbor Food Blog.

Crockpot Mushroom Barley Lentil Stew

I made this tonight and it was absolutely delicious.  Warm, comforting, and healthy.  Barley and lentils are full of fiber, which helps you to feel satisfied.  This is also a very easy dish to put together.


1 onion, chopped
6 cups water
1-2 tbs. Better Than Bullion Vegetable Base
1 16 oz. package sliced fresh mushrooms (or more for extra deliciousness)
3/4 cup uncooked pearled barley
3/4 cup dried brown lentils
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp. thyme
1/4 tsp. sage
3 bay leaves
1 tsp. dried basil
1/2 tsp. pepper
Olive oil
Salt to taste


Saute onion in olive oil until translucent.  This step is optional, but gives the stew a more complex, mellow flavor.

Throw all the ingredients in your crockpot and stir.  Add olive oil to taste (I add several tablespoons of olive oil to every soup or stew I make, which gives it a wonderful flavor).

Cook for 8 hours on low or 4 hours on high.  It can also be made on the stovetop.

Add salt to taste if needed after cooking.

The Ultimate Detox Salad

I don't know if a better detox salad than this exists, it is that good.  It is full of flavor and antioxidants, and will surely help to put you on the right track after the indulgences of the holidays.

For the dressing:
1/3 cup grapeseed oil
1/2 cup lemon juice, fresh
1 tablespoon ginger, peeled and grated
2 teaspoons whole grain mustard
2 teaspoons pure maple syrup, optional
1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste

For the salad:
2 cups dinosaur kale, tightly packed and thinly sliced
2 cups red cabbage, thinly sliced
2 cups broccoli florets
2 large carrots, peeled and grated
1 red bell pepper, sliced into matchsticks
2 avocados, peeled and diced
1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 cup walnuts
1 tablespoon sesame seeds

Read the complete recipe and directions at The Roasted Root.

Panera Copy Cat Black Bean Soup

I absolutely love Panera, and their black bean soup is one of my favorites.  This recipe comes very close to theirs; it's easy to make and completely delicious.  Serve it with some crusty bread and a green salad for a nice fall dinner.


  • 1 Medium Onion, small dice
  • 2 Cloves of Garlic, minced
  • 2 stalks of Celery, finely chopped
  • ¼ Red Bell Pepper, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 2 Cups Chicken Broth (more or less as needed)*
  • 2 Cans Black Beans (15 oz), rinsed
  • 1 tsp Ground Cumin
  • ½ tsp Red Pepper Flakes
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • about 1 tsp Lemon Juice (optional)

*I really love Superior Touch's No Chicken Base.  We have it at the store and I use it all the time when making rice or soups.  It's also much more economical than buying canned or boxed broth, and it's vegetarian too!

Read the entire recipe at

Barley Salad with Herbs

This is a great salad recipe that's light enough for a hot day in September, but is nice and filling.  Barley is a wonderful, fiber filled grain that will help you to feel fuller, longer.


1 1/2 cups pearl barley (not quick-cooking)
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons finely chopped shallots (about 1 medium)
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3/4 cup roughly chopped fresh herbs

Read the full recipe and directions at Martha Stewart.

The “Life Changing Loaf of Bread”

This bread is literally health on a plate.  It’s more dense than most breads, but it’s wonderfully filling and makes a fantastic breakfast or snack.


•    1 cup sunflower seed kernels (not in the shell)
•    ½ cup flax seeds
•    ½ cup hazelnuts or almonds
•    1 ½ cup rolled oats (if making gluten-free, make sure to get certified gluten-free oats)
•    2 tablespoons chia seeds
•    4 tablespoons psyllium seed husks (3 tablespoons if using psyllium husk powder)
•    1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt (add 1/2 teaspoon if using coarse salt)
•    1 tablespoon maple syrup (for sugar-free diets, use a pinch of stevia)
•    3 tablespoons melted coconut oil or ghee
•    1 ½ cup water


Read the complete recipe and directions at