So I haven't been blogging lately because I've been a bit under the weather lately.  My husband had recently come down with a virus and I believe that he passed it on to me.  I thought that it was just my allergies that were acting up because my throat was dry and itchy and my sinuses were bothering me.  I think it started out like that and then
slowly developed into what I have going on now.  I didn't have any major congestion but I did have a runny nose.  I started doing nasal flushes with the netti pot and I've been trying to push as many fluids as I can!  Funny thing is, I'm not full-blown sick but I'm also not well.  Besides from my throat being really sore and dry, some light pressure in my sinuses, a headache, and some ringing in my ears, I'm
actually ok.  I'm not terrible but I'm not well and I think that's because my body is really trying to fight it off.  I haven't really had an appetite but I've been forcing myself to eat.  I've been eating huge salads, veggie sandwiches with hummus, soup, and all other kinds of nutrient-dense food.  I have also been juicing a lot too.  I need to get over this fast!

I stopped in at the pulmonologist today because my asthma has been acting up along with my allergies.  I was prescribed some Singulair tablets.  This is supposed
to help with asthma and allergies.  I'm hoping that maybe the tablets will help my body fight off this virus sooner rather than later because I can't be sick for my surgery!  I've got two weeks to get better!  I always seem to take a little bit longer to get over things than other people and I believe that it's because of my asthma.  Although, this is the first time that I've been sick being a vegan so we'll see how this goes!

Don't worry...I've got recipe reviews and some more of my own recipes on the way!  I'm just trying to take it easy!

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This lentil soup is packed full of veggies and is high in protein, iron, and fiber, rich in vitamins A & C, and is loaded with antioxidants!  I have really been on a soup kick lately and I can't seem to get enough!  I love how it's so versatile; you can pack it up and take it to work for lunch or serve it for dinner as a side or a main course.  This time I created a savory lentil soup that's absolutely satisfying and delicious!  I had previously created a red lentil soup that's packed full of flavor from turmeric and cumin  (Kristen's Lentil Soup) but this time around I wanted to change things up a bit and make a more savory soup!  It was a success in the kitchen! 


1 tbs. olive oil
1/2 cup sweet onion, chopped
1 & 1/2 cup carrots, chopped (I chopped up some baby carrots that I had on hand and they worked perfectly)
2 stalks of celery, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, finely minced or grated (I grated mine)
1 & 1/2 cup lentils (I used Bob's Red Mill brand)
1 tsp. oregano
1/2 tsp. basil
1 & 1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
28 oz. can of diced tomatoes, undrained
2 cups veggie broth
7 cups water
1 bay leaf
fresh parsley, minced for garnish (optional)

How To

Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat.  Add the onion, carrots, and celery and sauté until the onion is translucent (about 5 minutes).  Grate the two cloves of garlic in the pot and sauté until fragrant (about 30 seconds to 1 minute).  Add the lentils, oregano, basil, salt & pepper, and sauté for 3 minutes.  Add the diced tomatoes and sauté for 1 minute.  Pour in the veggie broth and water and add the bay leaf.  Turn the heat up to high and bring to a boil.  Once the soup starts to boil, cover it and reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer for about 35 minutes until the lentils and carrots are tender.  When serving the soup, top it off with some fresh minced parsley for an extra kick of flavor!


You could easily change up this recipe to your liking!  I just used what I had on hand!  An addition of green beans would be really nice in this soup and you could use either fresh or frozen!  You could also try some peas or fresh zucchini!

If you don't have veggie broth you could use all water but then adjust the salt to your liking.  If you want to do all veggie broth you could do that as well but then reduce the salt amount!  I usually adjust the salt by a 1/2 tsp. at a time when making soups.

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I give this recipe 4 stars!  This recipe is from Kathy at
Healthy. Happy. Life. and I found it on Pinterest.  This salad is packed full of nutrients and antioxidants!  I absolutely loved the sweet and savory flavor of the salad dressing!  This is the first
raw kale salad that I have tried.  My husband didn't care for it too much because the texture of the kale was too chewy for him and I have to agree.  Although the recipe doesn't specify which type of kale to use for this salad I
think that dinosaur kale would work best for this recipe.  Unfortunately, my grocery store only had the curly kale available and it was too chewy for a raw kale salad!  I was hesitant in using the curly kale because I was weary on the chewy texture but I thought that I would be able to fix this by letting it marinate longer.  The recipe called for a
minimum of 1 hour and I let my salad marinate for 6 hours and it didn't help with the texture.  My husband and I were both missing the crunch and crispness of a salad.  I served this salad with an Asian Noodle Soup that is supposed to help fight a cold (
check out my review on the Asian Noodle
).  I loved the combination of these two dishes!  I
was looking for a nutrient-dense dinner to serve because my husband has been sick with an upper respiratory virus and I'm trying to fight it off!
What I Did Different
I added in some yellow bell pepper because I had some on hand and I let my salad marinate for 6 hours versus the one hour minimum.  I like my salads with enough dressing
to cover everything so I doubled the dressing, as suggested.

Overall Thoughts
I believe that I will be making this again but next time I will use dinosaur kale!  I think I will also add in some romaine lettuce to make it a more crisp salad!  Although, I would probably add the romaine lettuce just before serving so it
won't get soggy, and then toss it well to coat.  I would love to use this dressing on other salads because it's so good!

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I give this soup 5 stars!  This soup was so delicious and it really hit the spot!  This recipe is from Erica at
Coffee & Quinoa and I found this recipe on Pinterest.  Both my husband and I devoured our
bowls of soup pretty quickly!  There's a lot to love about this recipe!  The broth itself is slightly sweet, a tad bit sour, a hint of spicy, and extremely savory!  All of the ingredients blended together nicely and they complimented each other.  My husband has been sick lately with an upper respiratory virus so I was looking to serve up a nutrient-dense dinner to help cure him and to help me fight it off!  I absolutely can not get sick because I have knee surgery coming up in less than 3 weeks!  I paired this recipe with a 5-Step Kale Salad to make this a more
nutrient-dense, packed full of antioxidants, I'm going to kick this sickness in the butt type of dinner (
check out my review on the 5-Step Kale Salad here)!

What I Did Differently

I didn't make any alterations to this recipe!

Overall Thoughts

I will be making this recipe again and not for just when we're sick!  The only thing that I would change about this recipe is adding more broth because it's so delicious!  Also,  if you're not such a huge tofu fan you could easily take out the tofu and replace it with edamame!  I think that would be a great change!  FYI...the sriracha sauce is amazing in this soup!  I made little dots of the sauce all around my soup and I then mixed it in with my chop sticks...oh my, such a little bit of heaven and it really helps to clear the sinuses but be careful because that stuff is potent!

Also, instead of separating the veggies and noodles for leftovers, as the recipe suggested, I just threw it all in!  I thought the leftovers were still amazing!  Yes, the noodles and veggies were a bit softer but it was still really

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Oh.  My.  Goodness.  Hands down, these are the best chocolate chip cookies everrrr!!!!!  This recipe definitely gets 5 big stars and they are bound to fool ANY non-vegan!  I got this recipe from Amy at
The Comforting Vegan and I found the recipe through Pinterest.  I opted to add the 1 cup of walnuts for the added omega-3 benefits!  I recommend making a double batch because these cookies will not last long at all!  So, I do warn you that they are very addicting but so worth it!  If you love chocolate chip cookies then YOU HAVE TO TRY THIS RECIPE!  It will knock your socks off!

Things I Did Differently

I didn't make a change to this recipe but I do want to note that I used the Ener-G Egg Replacer for my "eggs".  I just followed the directions on the back of the box.

Overall Thoughts
I'm in love with these cookies and I will be making these again!  I'll be working on trying to win over the non-vegans with this recipe...and I won't even tell them that they're vegan until they try them  first :)

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My poor husband came home early from work yesterday because he was really sick.  My husband hardly ever gets sick and when he does he never misses
work or comes home early!  I took one look at him when he walked in
through the door and I knew this had to be more than a cold!  He
looked so weak and pale (he looked and sounded terrible!).  He was
complaining of sinus congestion and pain, headache, sore throat, really bad body aches, chest congestion, chills, and an overall feeling of just not being well.  I was concerned that he may have the start of bronchitis because he was coughing up some nasty looking phlegm and he was running a fever so I called the doctor's office to see if they could fit him in.  Unfortunately, our doctor's office did not have any other openings for the day so we had to go to
urgent care. 

After about 3 hours in urgent care they concluded that it is just an upper respiratory infection caused by a virus.  They mentioned that a lot of people have been coming in with the same symptoms lately.  The doctor said that all he can do is push fluids, eat healthy foods, take ibuprofen or Tylenol to help with the fever, proper hand hygiene, and rest.  If after 3 days or so of doing this and he's not showing signs of improvement then we are to follow up with our regular physician.  I really loved how she stressed eating healthy foods!  Not to call out my husband but he isn't fully vegan and he has a tendency to grab some fast food for lunch if he doesn't have time to pack a lunch in the morning.  He grabbed some fast food for lunch that day and I scolded him lightly on how that's not what his body needs to get better!  So when the doctor mentioned how important it is to really eat healthy foods;
you're darn right I had a smirk on my face!

I think all of us ladies know how stubborn men can be sometimes!  So, I took the initiative this morning and I woke up early so that I could juice up some nutrient-packed power juice and pack a lunch for my hubby.  This is
what I juiced:

* Spinach- antioxidant rich with vitamins A & C; anti-inflammatory
* Parsley- antioxidant rich with vitamins A & C; anti-inflammatory
* Cilantro- antioxidant rich with vitamins A & C; anti-inflammatory
* Ginger- anti-inflammatory, boosts immune system, improves circulation
* Lemon- balances the body's PH, rich in vitamin C, helps to cleanse the body
* Beet- a high source for energy, rich in vitamins A, B & C, cleanses the body (especially the blood)
* Carrots- antioxidant, cleanses the blood, contains beta-carotene which converts to vitamin A 
* Cucumber- good source of B vitamins (gives you energy),
* Green Apple- antioxidant rich in vitamin C
* Orange- antioxidant rich in vitamin C
* Pineapple- anti-inflammatory & rich in vitamin C

I only listed the vitamins that I found helpful for his symptoms.  It's amazing how many vitamins, minerals, and benefits these fruits and veggies have!  So I sent my husband off to work today with a big 16 oz. juice and a banana for breakfast; along with a nutrient-dense lunch!  For his lunch I packed a handful of cherry tomatoes, leftover spaghetti from my
Quick Dinner Fix blog, and a big bowl of my lentil soup!  This should give his body the fighting power it needs!

To top that off, for dinner tonight I'll be making a kale salad that's packed full of nutrients and an Asian noodle soup that I was supposed to make last night but wasn't able to because it was pretty late when we got back home from urgent care (I'll be posting reviews on the kale salad and Asian noodle soup later on).  I'm hoping that all of this will also help me to not get sick as well!  I have surgery coming
up in less than 3 weeks and I can't have surgery if I'm sick!  So, I'm taking all of the same precautions that he is...I'm even debating on running to the store to pick up some Lysol to sanitize the heck out of this place!  I have a feeling that I'm going to be in a cleaning frenzy today...

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Who doesn't love avocados?!?!  I've been pretty obsessed with them lately...stuffing them in sandwiches, using them in salads, and eating them as a snack or as a side along with a low-fat dinner!  Did you know that avocados contain nearly 20 essential vitamins and minerals and they also serve as a nutrient booster?  They help your body to better absorb fat-soluble nutrients such as lutein and alpha & beta-carotene.  If I'm finding myself eating a lot of low-fat foods then I try to incorporate this dish into my diet.  I think this is one of the best and most simple ways to eat an avocado!  Plus, this recipe only takes about 5 minutes to prepare!


Olive oil (preferably high quality)
Salt & Pepper to taste

How To

This one is really simple!  Simply cut how many slices of avocado you want.  Layer the slices on a plate.  Drizzle with some high quality olive oil (you don't need a lot).  Sprinkle with some fresh ground sea salt & pepper to taste.  Enjoy!

Tip:  I cut the avocado in half.  Keeping the skin on, I slice off the amount of slices that I need and then I peel the skin off and arrange the slices on a plate.  I take the remaining avocado and I place it back on the other half, keeping the seed in place.  I then store it in an air-tight container.  This keeps the avocado longer and prevents browning.  The outer edges will still brown just a bit but the rest of the avocado won't.  For later use, just do the same and cut what you need.  For some reason, keeping the seed in helps the avocado from browning and keeps it longer.

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If you're looking for a traditional style potato salad with a bit of a twist and more kick in the taste department then this is the recipe for you!  I recently had an epiphany about this recipe one day.  I had picked up some radishes from the grocery store because they looked so good and I've recently had a craving for them.  When I got home I washed the radishes and I cut the greens and ends off them.  My plan was to throw these in a container and put them in the fridge for when I wanted a snack during the week.  All of a sudden a light bulb went off...why not put some of them in a potato salad?!?!?  I don't know why I haven't thought of this before because this idea was genius!  It really adds a whole new dimension to the potato salad and the mayo helps to smooth the spice of the radish.  I raided my fridge in search for some other veggies to add to the mix and I came up with the perfect potato salad recipe that's bound to impress!


2 lbs. of potatoes (I used yellow potatoes but red potatoes would also be perfect)
1/4 cup yellow bell pepper, diced
1/4 cup red onion, diced,
1/4 cup celery, diced
5-6 radishes, diced
1/4 cup fresh parsley, stems removed, and minced
2 tsp. dried dill
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/8 tsp. black pepper
3/4 cup Veganaise
1 & 1/2 tsp. dijon  mustard
fresh chopped dill for garnish (optional)

How TO:

Peel the potatoes and dice into 1 inch pieces.  Place the potatoes in a pot and cover with water.  Place the pot on high heat and bring to a boil.   Let the potatoes boil until tender being careful to not overcook (about 15-20 minutes after the water comes to a boil).  Once the potatoes are ready, drain them in a colander and run cold water over them until they are cold (about 5 minutes or so).  Drain well.
While the potatoes are cooking you can start chopping all of the veggies and the parsley.  Place the bell pepper, onion, celery, radishes,
parsley, dill, cumin, black pepper in a large bowl.   Add the cold potatoes, Veganaise, dijon mustard, and mix well using the spoon to break up some of the potatoes.  Breaking up the potatoes a little bit more creates a creamier and thicker potato salad!  Once it is fully mixed, let it chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes before serving.  Sprinkle with some fresh chopped dill for garnish if you like!

If you noticed, I did not add any salt to the potato salad mixture itself.  I did this because potatoes have a tendency to really soak up the salt and I find myself not only adding salt to the mixture but also adding it just before I eat it because the potatoes soaked up all the salt.  In order to avoid consuming so much salt, I just sprinkle it on top just before I eat it.  If serving this at a party or something, you can always sprinkle a bit of salt on top just before setting it out!

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I give this recipe 5 stars!  These turned out amazing and I was impressed!  This recipe is from Erin at
Texanarian Cooking and I found this recipe on Pinterest.  They have no grain, no eggs, no dairy, no oil, and no butter!  These really fooled my husband!  It is such a simple recipe and they were extremely easy to make.  The odd thing is that they are made out of chick peas!  Wait, did I really just say chick peas?!?!  Yep, I sure did and the funny thing is that you wouldn't even be able to tell unless I told you!  These cookies really pack a punch in the protein department and they are extremely filling.  Two of these cookies and I can almost guarantee you'll be

I'm not usually a grain-free person but this recipe was so out there that I needed to try it and I'm really glad that I
did!  My husband likes his warmed up a bit before eating but I actually like mine room temperature.  Funny thing is that Erin mentions how she really doesn't like them cold!  I guess it's all about personal preference but I still thought they were good!  
Things I did Different
Erin mentions that this isn't the type of recipe to do all sorts of variations with so I stuck with the recipe.  The only variation I did make was using agave nectar instead of honey to make it vegan.  She does mention that this is a variation that can be done with success.  The only thing
that it changed was the color of the cookies.  They turned out slightly darker than hers but they're still amazing!

Overall Thoughts
I will definitely make these again!  These would be great as a mid-day snack when an extra boost of energy is needed!  They're packed full of protein, healthier than most cookies, and sweet!

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I give this recipe 5 stars!  These tacos turned out great!  This recipe is
from Susan at
Fat Free Vegan Kitchen and I found this recipe on Pinterest.  I topped off my tacos with Follow Your Heart vegan sour cream, cilantro, shredded spinach, tomatoes, avocado and a
squeeze of lime juice!  My husband and I just devoured this meal!  It seems as though everyone on Pinterest has been obsessed with non-typical ways of using cauliflower and I wanted to jump on the bandwagon!  After trying a "cream" of mushroom soup recipe ( it used cauliflower in place of the cream and it turned out amazing), I knew that cauliflower could do wonderful things besides being eaten on its own as a side.  This recipe truly inspired me that there are a lot of possibilities for cauliflower!
What I Did Different
Nothing!  I didn't have to make any variations for this recipe. 

Overall Thoughts
I will be making this recipe again but next time I will make a half batch!  This recipe makes too much for two people but it would be perfect for a family!  Also, just a personal preference, I do prefer regular tortillas versus corn tortillas.  The corn tortillas always seem to have a rubbery texture but again, it's a personal preference!  These would also be great in a hard shell too!