We are definitely in the heart of the fall season and cozy recipes are required! It’s the time of year where we feel the need for those comfort meals as the days get darker, quieter and colder. We crave the cozy warm recipes that just make us feel good inside. This is my favourite season to create recipes. I get so inspired by all the foods in season during this time. Everything looks absolutely delicious and I start to think of all the recipes I want to try making. It’s just simply a wonderful time of year!
Many people will say that during this time of year they typically put on weight because they eat more decadent meals. Some say they crave “bad” foods. I feel like anything that’s a favourite cozy fall meal can be made into a healthier version. You can enjoy the wonderful much loved meal and still stay on track with wellness goals. I love to create meals that are guilt free and healthy but still taste fabulous. I know I’ve said this before but you CAN have it all! No more beating yourself up about eating naughty meals! You just have to get in the mindset of adjusting the recipe to meet your health and wellness goals. Also I’d like to add that if you do enjoy indulgent meals here and there, that’s also totally ok. It’s all about balance in life. I say just clean up your act and eat as clean as possible after that meal. It will be just fine.
I created this very simple butternut squash soup recipe using wholesome ingredients and it tastes fantastic. This recipe is a crowd pleaser and it’s perfect for entertaining during the holiday season as well. Now that covid restrictions have lightened up and families can get together we can finally start having guests over! Wow this is exciting! Everyone will enjoy this soup! My feedback after posting this recipe on my YouTube channel was excellent. I feel so good knowing that people are enjoying this hearty yet healthy soup!
Squash is abundant in every grocery store or farmer’s market this time of year. It’s definitely easy to find because they seem to be the star of the show in October and on into the colder months. Squash can be inexpensive as well and it’s quite hearty. You can make this whole recipe using just one butternut squash. A little goes a long way. My recipe will serve 4 people, so if you want to make it for a larger gathering then just make sure you pick up extra squash. I bought mine from Costco and they actually came in a two pack which is great. They worked out to 3.5 lbs each.
What if you don’t have fresh produce available to you? Depending on where you live or your budget you might not be able to get fresh squash. That’s totally ok! You can definitely use canned squash of any variety to make this recipe if needed. They do sell butternut squash in cans so this might be a good solution for you. You can also use frozen squash if that’s all you can find as well. Find whatever works for you because my recipe is very adaptable. Creating these healthier options doesn’t have to be complicated. I find sometimes we get into these rigid rules when cooking and that is just way too stressful. We tend to over complicate things and it doesn’t have to be this way.
Butternut Squash is full of Vitamins, Fiber and Antioxidants. It’s loaded with vitamin C, vitamin A, and B Vitamin’s as well. It’s rich with magnesium and potassium which plays an important role for us in our bone health. It’s so nice to know that something so delicious is actually really beneficial to our health.
I decided to add some apples to this recipe because we had picked a whole bunch from our tree in the backyard. They needed to be used up and they taste so incredibly good! I’m not sure what the variety is but they grow perfect and I love how sweet they are. I don’t put any pesticides on my tree and they still turn out perfect. No bugs either! The only battle I have is the Toronto raccoons eating them on the tree and then throwing half away onto the ground. They basically eat half of the apple and throw away the rest! Ugh! Why can’t they just eat the whole thing?
I hope you enjoy my easy Butternut Squash Soup recipe. Let me know if you make it and if you make an adjustments to the recipe. I will post the video version of this recipe below if you would like to watch me cook this lovely soup. Enjoy this amazing time of year and the gorgeous fall season!
Easy Butternut Squash Soup
⁃ 1 Butternut Squash, peeled & chopped Look for one around 3.5 lbs.
⁃ 1 tbsp. Bouillon
⁃ 4 1/4 cups water
⁃ 1/2 onion, chopped
⁃ 3 medium sized apples, chopped
⁃ 3 cloves of garlic
Herbs & Spices:
⁃ Curry powder
⁃ Onion powder
⁃ Cumin powder
⁃ Dry Oregano
⁃ Black pepper
⁃ Himalayan pink salt
1. Preheat oven to 400F
3. Peel & chop the butternut squash. Add it to a lined baking pan.
4. Peel and chop apples and add them to the baking pan.
5. Chop up onion and peel garlic cloves. Toss into the pan. Add the spices to the mixture as well.
6. Pop the baking pan into the oven at 400F for 30 minutes. I gave it a mix at the half way mark.
7. Add the butternut squash mixture to a large pot. Add the bouillon, and water as well.
8. Use a hand blender to purée the soup or add it in batches to a blender.
9. Add more spices if necessary according to you taste.
10. Add the soup to bowls and enjoy!
Note: garnish with some pumpkin or squash seeds on top if desired.
Health, Joy & Positive Vibes,
I’m sharing my Best Ever Vegan Lasagna with you all today! Welcome back to my blog! This recipe is seriously pretty epic and I’m so excited to share it with you!
It has such a depth of flavours and it’s easy to put together. I feel like even a beginner cook could make this lasagna pretty easily. The only time consuming part is cooking the elements for the layers of the Lasagna. Assembly goes quite fast and then it does it’s thing cooking up in the oven for 1 hour. You don’t have to keep checking it while it cooks up either. I suggest just uncovering it for the last 10 minutes.
My lasagna is made using wholesome ingredients and you can feel good about eating it all up. Trust me you will want to eat every last bite of it! As always with my recipes I always make sure I’m using easy to find ingredients. All of the components to this lasagna are super easy to find at any grocery store. I feel like there is nothing more annoying than having to search multiple grocery stores looking for certain ingredients. You won’t be doing that with this one. You actually probably already have most of the ingredients on hand at home. I love making pantry staple meals. I don’t like having to buy too many ingredients for my meals.
The cheese sauce used in my recipe is a modified version of a recipe I found on YouTube. I will make sure to add it to this post for your reference. The thing I love about homemade “cheese” is that you can customize it to your liking and needs. You can make it thick and spreadable or on the runny side depending on what your cooking.
I love how little money I spent on the ingredients needed for this recipe as well. Most of the ingredients are staple items I always have at home. I love when meals are low cost and provide an abundance of nutrition. You can find cans or a jars of tomato sauce for pretty cheap at pretty much every grocery store. Just make sure it’s pure tomato sauce without any added oil. This will keep the calories lower by skipping any added unnecessary oil to the meal. Lasagna noodles are inexpensive as well and a fantastic variety can be found depending on where you shop. Organic tofu is often on sale, and frozen veggies are the cheapest to buy at the grocery store. The only ingredient I find that can be sometimes costly is the nutritional yeast. If you can buy it in bulk that will save money. You only need a little amount for this lasagna and the rest will store for a long time in the pantry.
This recipe will be enjoyed by even the most picky eaters. I’ve even served it to meat eaters and they loved it too! I think that says a lot because they tend to be quite reluctant to try meals like this in my experience.
Best Ever Vegan Lasagna
– 2 680 ml cans of tomato sauce
– 500g firm tofu
– 2 tbsp. Nutritional Yeast
– 2 tbsp. better than boullion
– 2 tbsp. Garlic power
– 2 tsp. Onion powder
– 1 tsp. Dry Oregano
– 1/3 cup fresh Basil
– 3 cups frozen mixed veggies
– 1 cup frozen edamame
– 1 package frozen spinach, thawed
– 1 box 375g whole wheat lasagna noodles
– homemade cheese sauce or a bag of vegan shredded cheese
1. Thaw out the spinach before hand.
2. Preheat the oven to 400° F.
3.In a frying pan cook up the frozen vegetables and spinach. Use water instead of oil to cook them up. Add 1 tbsp. Of better than boullion, 1 tbsp. Garlic Powder and 1 tsp. Onion Powder to the vegetables. Set aside until ready to use.
4. Add the tofu to a pan and crumble it up using your spatula. Saute in water instead of oil. Add 1 tbsp. of Better Than Boullion and 1 tbsp. Nutritional yeast. Cook well and set aside until you need it.
5. Add the tomato sauce to a pan and add 1 tbsp. Garlic Powder, 1 tsp. Onion Powder, 1 tsp. Dry Oregano and 1/3 cup fresh Basil. Heat up on a medium heat for 10 minutes with the lid on.
6. Make cheese sauce or skip this step and just use store bought vegan cheese. The homemade cheese sauce only takes a few minutes to make in the blender. Just heat it through in a pan on the stove top.
7. Cook the lasagna noodles as per box instructions. I splash some cool water on them in the colander just to make sure they don’t stick together too much.
8. Grab your lasagna baking dish and start to assemble the lasagna. I add tomato sauce to the pan first and the lasagna noodles. Then I add the veggie mix, a drizzle of tomato sauce, tofu mixture and then the cheese sauce on top. Keep repeating until you’ve filled the lasagna dish. Finish with tomato sauce. Add more cheese sauce on top too if desired.
9. Cover with foil and cook for 1 hour at 400° F. Uncover for the last 10 minutes.
10. Allow to cool for a few minutes before slicing it up.
I used a modified version of Jill McKeever cheese recipe. I added lots of garlic powder, extra onion powder, black pepper and extra water to the sauce when I made it. I also transfered the sauce from the blender to a pot to thicken up. Keep a close eye on the sauce because it will stick to the bottom of the pan easily.
I will add a link to Jill’s recipe video below.
I will also add my video version of my recipe below. I know many of you prefer to watch the recipe video.
Thank you for the support and love on my YouTube Channel. If you find my recipes helpful on your health journey then please Subscribe to the channel. Please give the video a Like as well because this helps my little channel tremendously. Thank you!
Health, Joy & Positive Vibes,
My most popular homemade cookie is my Oatmeal Chocolate Chip cookie recipe. It’s healthy, nutritious and keeps you feeling full super long. They even qualify as a great breakfast cookie in my opinion. I say if they include oatmeal then they qualify as breakfast!
This recipe can also be altered to suit your preferences. You can mix it up a little by replacing the chocolate chips with raisins or cranberries if you prefer. Those options would be tasty. My kids like them best with vegan chocolate chips, so I stick with this option pretty much every time I make it.
I feel good knowing that although I’m eating a cookie that it’s a healthy alternative. I love guilt free options!
I will indulge in store bought baked goods sometimes but they just don’t seem to settle with me well. These treats are usually too sweet and contain oil in them. I’m not used to either of those things in my diet. I now avoid outside treats as much as possible and try making my own healthy snacks.
If you don’t like bananas then I apologize because the star of the show is banana in my recipe. It binds everything so nicely and provides all the sweetness we need without adding any extra sugar. I avoid adding extra sugar in my baked goods whenever possible. You can use sweet potato as an alternative to banana however and that should work really well too.
BEST EVER OATMEAL CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES
• 2 cups oats
• 4 cups oat flour
• 9 bananas
• 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
• 1/2 cup vegan chocolate chips
• 1/4 cup hemp hearts
• 6 flax eggs.
FLAX EGGS: 1Tbsp. Flaxmeal + 3 Tbsp. Water. This will make 1 Flax Egg. Allow to thicken up for 5 minutes.
Preheat Oven to 350 F. & Make your Flax Eggs
1. Mash Bananas and add Vanilla
2. Add in the thickened Flax Eggs and mix with a fork
3. Toss in the Oats and combine well
4. Next add in the Oat Flour
5. Add in the Hemp Hearts & Vegan Chocolate Chips
5. Combine Well
6. Place parchment paper on a cookie sheet and shape the cookies out with a spoon. Flatten them as well.
7. Bake for 18 Minutes at 350 F
Bake at 350° for 18 minutes. Allow to cool completely before storing in an airtight container.
I hope you enjoy my recipe as much as we do at my house! Healthy foods can taste exceptionally good when you use the right ingredient combinations. These cookies make me feel like I’m eating a decadent treat but in reality it’s just a wholesome snack.
Stay Healthy my friends! Much Love & Positive Vibes to you. 💚
Happy Sunday to you all! I hope everyone is doing well and staying healthy. It’s pretty crazy how quickly things have changed in the world and it’s definitely a scary time.
With all the extra time on most people’s hands I’ve noticed a lot more people cooking up a storm. People are trying new recipes and getting inspiration from each other. I think this is fantastic because we can now get back to basics and learn how to prepare healthier homemade meals.
Many people are worried about weight gain because of all the inactivity during isolation. This is definitely valid but It’s pretty easy to keep our diet clean. By eating whole foods, drinking plenty of water, and making those homemade meals this is easily controlled. Yes we will snack a little more but if we choose wholesome foods then we shouldn’t worry to much about weight gain. When weather permits then get outside and take a walk or go for a run. It’s not only good for our waistline but also for our mental health.
I’ve had many people ask me for my simple instapot immune boosting veggie soup. I decided to make a little video making it so you can see how easy it is to make. It’s filled with amazing immune boosting veggies and you can use fresh or frozen veggies. It will all work for this easy soup. At this point in time it’s sometimes difficult to get certain foods because of the COVID-19 situation. We are also limited to how many items we can buy so this can be difficult at times. I’ve been making this soup a lot because it’s easy to make, fast, I can use whatever veggies I have and I feel like my family could benefit from the immune boosting properties in the soup. It’s a win in every way! Let me know what your go to meal is these days in the comments.
Enjoy my recipe and please tag/mention me here or Instagram if you make it. If you haven’t already followed me on YouTube I would truly appreciate your support. Please Like and Subscribe to my channel. Don’t forget to stay connected with me across social media as well. Stay Healthy my friends!
Light & Love,
I put up a new video on my YouTube channel! People are always curious about what I eat so I decided to do a video!
Please Like & Subscribe and help support health and wellness!
I appreciate each and every one of you!