Monday, February 28, 2011

S'mores Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

Have you ever heard of the website, “This is Why You’re Fat?”

It is pretty much the most ridiculous food items that people prepare for no reason other than to grow their waistline. Really, who in the world needs a bacon sandwich using Krispy Kreme doughnuts as bread?


Every now and then I see something on the interwebs that makes me go, “hmmmm.” One of those recipes that I think, "this is why you're chubby." I stumbled across a recipe for a s'mores stuffed cookie the other day. Yes a s'more, stuffed into a cookie. What?!

After my initial rational reaction I thought, “Wait, I bet I could make that vegan.”

This would accomplish several of the things on my recent to-do list.
  1. Attempt to veganize a non-vegan recipe.
  2. Try vegan marshmallows.
  3. Make a cookie larger than most newborn babies.
*tinkering tinkering*

This is the most absurd cookie (read: 4 cookies) you will ever see in your life. To be totally honest, I didn’t really “veganize” anything, I just constructed something using vegan ingredients and a recipe I already love. So take that as you will.

But, without further ado, presenting the vegan s'mores stuffed cookie.

More pictures and the recipe after the jump.

Friday, February 25, 2011

My Vegan Magnum Opus

Just because...

I remember one of the first times I heard about veganism; I was about 16 and one of my friends had a brother that was vegan. I remember thinking it was so strict and had so many “rules.”

My friend described how he wouldn’t drink “Fruitopia” (remember that?) because the red dye was made up of crushed beetles.Horrifying!

This story has always stuck with me. For some reason, I think its things like this that delayed my inevitable choice to be vegan. I don’t know if I was scared of the vegan police or if I just was too afraid of messing up and eating Blue Ketoalanine 47 in a margarita which could be made of pony tears. (clearly I made that up)

I have been thinking about this a lot recently. I love being vegan. I love living cruelty free and choosing compassion every day. I don’t see my life any different. But sometimes there are things that are tough. Who knew that so much commercial bread has L-Cysteine in it which can be made of duck feathers? Stearic acid can be made from pigs’ stomach lining. Commercial white sugar is commonly whitened using filters made of bone char.

It’s insane that all of this stuff exists. Do most people know? No. Do most people care? Sadly, no.  But if we preach worry about every single obscure thing in the products consumed on a daily basis I think it takes away from our message.

Our message (in my opinion) is to treat animals with the same love and respect that we expect for ourselves. That means don’t eat them. That means don’t steal from them. That means don’t use their hard work for your benefit.

But when we get nasty with servers at a restaurant or our friends for not knowing that their pita bread isn’t vegan, it hurts our message. I don’t think it does us any favors.

Compassion = love for everyone
Positivity gets us heard. No one will ever listen to a jerk.

So I am not and would never advocate purchasing products that you know have animal products in them, even obscure ones. Your wallet speaks louder than anything else you do.

But I am advocating for all of us to remember that simply making the choice to not eat animals saves so many lives every year. That is the message that people can hear. Spreading this message and living your life cruelty free is what is the most important. 

Sometimes we all just have something to say. 

I would love to know....what do you think?

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Roasting 101

Do you ever just think, “This is way too easy to be this good?”

I do; all the time actually. (i.e. roasting...) 

For some reason I have always had this irrational fear of using the broiler or the idea of roasting vegetables. It’s silly really. I thought you needed some kind of crazy pan or fancy tools I don’t have. Generally when I see a recipe that says “roasted ___” I just skip on by it.

But recently I made some amazing cauliflower soup that involved roasting cauliflower and potatoes. When I read the directions I realized that it was not nearly as complicated as I thought. 

Making this soup has put me on a roasting rampage. Carrots, onions, cauliflower, potato, garlic, broccoli, brussells sprouts, my cell phone, people that annoy me; really anything that will go on a pan with olive oil and it’s on.

I think roasting is a great way to use fresh vegetables if you have some that you don’t want to go bad.

Last week I took a smorgasbord of random veggies from my fridge, chopped them into nice sized pieces, sprinkled them with salt and pepper and added about two tablespoons of olive oil. I put it in the oven for about 30 minutes at 425 degrees, flipping them once halfway.

When they were done and beautifully roasted, I sprinkled nutritional yeast over the top and served them with cous cous. Add some Frank's hot sauce on the top and you have yourself a party in your mouth where everyone is invited.

Easy, delicious, light, cheap and just perfect! 

Now, back to contemplating what else to roast… Ideas?

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Roasted Cauliflower Soup

Husband worked at a steak house right before I met him. Gross.

One of the things this particular steak house was known for was their potato soup. Women would sell their children for a drop. Grandmothers would cut someone.When the server brought it to the table people would faint from pure potato soup jubilation.

It was popular.

Ever since, husband has declared himself a potato soup expert. Naturally.

Sadly, this restaurants soup was full of bacon, dairy, and god knows what other horrifying ingredients. I have always wanted to find a vegan soup recipe that would satisfy his judgmental soup palate.

Recently I have achieved victory in this quest.

I stumbled upon a recipe for Roasted Cauliflower Soup topped with Curried Cashew Crème in the January/February issue of VegNews magazine. It was one of their 7 “must try” soups; which I guarantee you is no lie.

When I told him I was making cauliflower soup he seemed a little unsure, but after snarfing down two bowls he was a surefire fan. I believe his exact comments were, “this may be the best soup I ever had.”

*happy soup dance*

So it’s still winter and (for most of us) is cold and dreary out. This soup will make a delightful end to a cold and nasty day.

To soup!

Recipe and more photos after the jump…

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Just Another Sunday Funday

City living sure can have its benefits.

I grew up in the “suburbs” of Boston, but I was close enough to both Boston and Providence to have the chance to experience city life growing up. 

I have always known I was a city guy. The hustle and bustle, the activity, the culture, the diversity, the life, the love, the food; all of it just gets my heart racing.

It have been in Pittsburgh for 5 years and I still have a love hate relationship with it. But no matter what, I am just thankful to have the resources of city living available to me.

If you have ever visited the ‘Burgh, you may have heard of our famous Strip District. It is essentially our warehouse area where trucks and rail have brought in produce (and other things) for more than a century. At its peak there were over 71 produce dealers in the Strip District. Today, it is known more for being the hub of ethnic food markets, restaurants, cheap Steelers stuff, and some remaining produce dealers. I love it.

Last year, the Pittsburgh Public Market opened in one of the empty warehouse buildings. I have been dying to go ever since and finally made it down there this weekend.

It is so fun! I wouldn’t call it the ultimate vegan hotspot, but I imagine when local summer produce starts rolling in it gets much better. There were a little bit to many meat distributors for my liking right now, but…

My favorites were a stand selling about a million flavors of olive oil, a Greek restaurant stand with veggie stuffed grape leaves (YUM), and an organic bakery that had vegan Coconut Cashew Macaroons. 

Don’t mind if I do.

So if you ever make it to Pittsburgh, visit our local public market. But, wherever you live, visit your local farmers market and support local community agriculture. Buy fresh, buy local.

As Martha would say, “it’s a good thing.”

More pictures after the jump.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Orange Teriyaki "Beef"

I think it is only fitting after a post about Julie & Julia to talk about Meet the Shannons.

Have you heard of them?

Stop what you’re doing (after you read my post) and visit their blog. Their blog was one of my inspirations to start The Chubby Vegan. Meet the Shannons is a blog by Dan and Annie Shannon, two absolutely precious animal rights advocates who decided to veganize the entire Betty Crocker Cookbook.

Yes, veganize the entire thing; including fried eggs and every other thing your Aunt Edna made for summer barbecues.

They got the idea after watching Julie & Julia. Of course, like myself, they hated the disgusting amount of animal products used by Julia Child.

So why not take one of America’s most widely known cookbooks and show people that any of its recipes can be made vegan and totally awesome. Brilliant! I would call them vegan rock stars.

I applaud them and what they do. I would also be super happy to be invited to their house for dinner.  

Dan? Annie? I am waiting by the phone...

I tried my first recipe from Meet the Shannons last week and it was quite delish! It was my first time using Gardein Beef Tips and it was probably the most realistic looking (and tasting) fake meat I have ever used. Even though it has been over eight years since I have had hamburger, it tasted exactly like I remember it. Crazy!

So this recipe is the Shannons vegan version of Orange Teriyaki Beef from Betty Crocker. It was pretty good; give it a try and judge for yourself. Then, visit the Shannons and tell them how awesome they are.

I just did…

More pictures and the recipe after the jump.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Julie / Julia

So technically I am a food blogger. I have never seen (or read) Julie & Julia, until yesterday.

That is silly, right? The concept that Julie Powell had was one of the first to really catapult the idea of sharing your cooking triumphs (and failures) online. I am sure there were ones before her (that I am totally ignorant too) that may have done something similar, but hers worked. She did it all before twitter and facebook. She made it successful with just words, no pictures. Impressive.

I liked the movie. It was really cute.

I also really like Meryl Streep and her (spot on) version of Julia Child. There is something about Meryl Streep that I have always loved. She is one of those celebrities that I feel like I just want to hang out with. She seems like that cool aunt that everyone has.

More importantly I felt like I could relate to the story in some way. So many of us work in (what feels like) a dead end job and in our hearts know that there is something better for us out there. Sometimes people find it. Other times people die at work in their cubicle.

So here I am the day after, living my Chubby Vegan life, working in my little kitchen, and contemplating what it would be like to be the next blog success story. Maybe this will be my ticket to the next leap. Maybe I am just one of the millions of people plugging away at their keyboards hoping for others to read what I have to say.

Either way, I connect with you Julie like you connected with Julia. And to all my loving readers out there, whoever you are, thanks for validating my journey.

Bon appétit! 

Friday, February 18, 2011

Chocolate Chip Coconut Cookies

Husband hates coconut…

I don’t know why really. I think it is such a versatile fruit that can be used in so many different ways. Coconut milk, oil, water, juice, flakes and the list goes on and on.

My mother always liked coconut pastries. I remember getting coconut donuts when I was a kid and I must say they were pretty darn good.

However, primarily due to husbands dislike, I have not baked much with coconut. It is not like he has to love everything I make, but I try to be nice and make things he will enjoy too.

The other day I was in the mood to stress bake. This is pretty much when you want to stress eat, but don’t have premade items in your house to adequately suffice your need. So I stumbled upon this recipe (and video) for Chocolate Chip Coconut Cookies from Sarah Kramer at I have seen her books before but never tried her recipes.

There a billion and one recipes for vegan CC cookies, but this one had a nice twist and I decided to give it a shot.

The verdict…. INCREDIBLE! Really, they are one of the easiest and tastiest cookies I have ever made. The coconut flavor is so perfectly slight you barely even know it’s there. Husband remarked that they were some of the best cookies he ever had and proceeded to eat about 6. Coconut and all…

Who says you can’t change a man?  *wink*

Recipe, more pictures, and the video of Sarah making them after the jump.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Is Hospital Food Healthy?

Hospitals are supposed to be havens of healthy lifestyles, right? They are huge buildings that house people for the sole purpose of making the sick better. Makes sense that at its core hospitals would serve healthy and delicious food for all of their patients and visitors.


Oh, excuse me…. I just fell out of my chair from laughing at that.

In my last two posts I (lovingly) detailed husbands recent adventure at our local wellness center. While he was there, both times, I couldn’t help but observe the culinary wonders they brought him for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Okay… so let’s put it out there. The vast majority of people at hospitals are old folks who can’t live without their Friday fish sandwich and slice of enriched white bread. But for reals people, you can’t tell me that hospitals can’t offer some more nutritious and vegetable centered cuisine. I mean, really? Am I being to ignorant?

In case you didn’t know, husband is not a chubby vegan- just a chubby carnivore. We are a mixed family and we deal with that. So while at the hospital he was served a variety of plates of pork chops, chicken things, and crab cakes. They did ask him if he had any dietary needs, which he does not. I imagine this is probably meant more for diabetics and food allergies, but I really wanted to ask them if they could accommodate a vegan diet. Since I didn’t ask, I will try not to judge too much.

However, I just wish that hospitals would step it up a bit. His plates all looked like those crappy pictures from 8th grade nutrition class (fistful of meat, palm full of vegetables, and a scoop of starchy something). Lame…

In all reality I guess I shouldn’t be surprised. I have read that medical doctors only get about a second of nutrition training. Plus, how many medical professionals are smoking cigarettes and drinking gallons of soda and energy drinks. Right?

*stepping off my soap box*

If you want to read more about my venture into the hospital cafeteria and their vast assortment (lies) of vegan food, follow me after the jump.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Hospital Visit - Take Two

Amazing how quickly things can change…

After our visit to the hospital we thought things were going pretty well.


After a morning of feeling just okay, husband started to get the same symptoms on Monday afternoon. It all happened pretty much right after I posted about our first hospital visit.

A couple of phone calls to the doctor and we were back in the emergency room and being admitted once again.

Pissed Husband
Modern medicine is a wonderful thing. You can break your leg and they can mend it. You can have a blockage in your arteries and there is a surgery to fix it. But when you are 33 years old with chest pain and all of your tests “look good” they don’t have much for you. In fact, they pretty much disregard you.

So husband stayed over another night. This time our amusing hospital stories got even better. Of course I will explain that later.

Come to find out his original diagnosis is about the same, but they added a new one called, “Pleurisy.” My wiki-vegan explanation of this is when the lining around your lungs is infected or inflamed you can have serious chest pains and heart palpitations. With heart palpitations comes anxiety, which leads to worse pain. So there you have it.

It is scary as hell. But I am glad he is out of the hospital and home resting.

So I am making lots of lovely comfort food and making sure he takes it easy. The good news about that is I have lots of great new recipes to share this week! For now, you can read my two newest amusing hospital stories, after the jump.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Hospital a Go-Go

Sorry I haven’t posted in a few days.  I was a little preoccupied.
Husband had been having chest pains for a few days and decided it was best to play it safe and go to the hospital.

33 years old + chest pain = VERY scary

So picture it… Emergency room. St. Clair Hospital. A few days ago… Husband (Graham) was poked and prodded with needles, an IV, chest x-rays, and an EKG. The doctor thought it was something called Pericarditis, which sounds horrifying.

Since he wasn’t sure he asked him to stay overnight for observation.

He stayed in pretty good spirits; of course being helped by my charming personality and ability to make bizarre and scary circumstances into amusing scenes.

The next day he had more tests, saw a new doctor (that I would like to name “McSkeazy”) and ate more bizarre school cafeteria looking food. The diagnosis remained the same although they still weren’t positive. So, another night it was.

Finally, on the third day, he saw a cardiologist and the diagnosis was upheld and he was sent home…

In all honesty, I would like to rant about all of the inadequacies I saw at the hospital during his stay. I would like to lead a protest against wasteful medical spending. I would like to cuss out a couple of doctors who left us sitting in a hospital room for hours and hours and hours not knowing anything.

I would like get pissed that there wasn’t sexy doctors and nurses everywhere like on TV.

But, I wont. Husband is okay and that is all that matters. They are pretty sure his problem was what the diagnosis was. From what I gathered (from McSkeazy) it is when a cold virus (example) goes into your heart and gets inflamed leading to chest pain. That is my super basic and non-medical definition.

Instead of ranting, I would like to share my amusing hospital stories and maybe some more funny pictures… after the jump.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Ready for the Weekend

I drink.


Truth be told, I love a good cocktail. What chubby vegan doesn’t? Hands? Bueller?

Margaritas, (cheap) beer, vodka, and wine… yes please. Believe it or not, I didn’t drink until I was 21. No joke. I was such a good boy.
When I made the transition to veganism I was so saddened when I learned how much alcohol was poisoned with animal products. Ugh! *shakes fist* Thankfully there are awesome vegan sleuths that compile websites like barnivore to let you know what types of beer and wine is vegan friendly.

In a random trip to my local PA State liquor store I asked a staff member if they had any organic wine, expecting them to faint in shock. (note: my part of town is not known for being very cosmopolitan) To my shock and delight, the store clerk presented me with his favorite organic wine. He said, “it doesn’t give my daughter headaches.”

Well, all right!

The bottle was a cabernet sauvignon (my favorite) from a CA winery named Frey Vineyards. Come to find out it was the 2003 winner of best vegan wine from Veg News.

Let me just tell you, it is my ABSOLUTE favorite red wine. It’s totally vegan friendly, affordable, and delicious. I could easily tear through the whole bottle, which I may do from time to time. (Shh…that’s a secret)

So when you just want a good glass (or bottle) of wine, give it a try. This chubby vegan gives it a giant seal of approval!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Just Because

Friends = Love

I am so thankful for good friends in my life. I think it is a blessing so many of us take for granted. I talk to some of my out of town friends at least once a day; sometimes more. One of them is the animal lover pictured above. I am one of those rare people who still have close friends from high school (and before).

It’s a good thing.

I think friends keep us all grounded. There is something about each of us that doesn’t mind when our friends (or in some cases family) tell us we are being an ass because we know they do it out of love.

I read a quote once that said, “A friend is someone who understands your past, believes in your future, and accepts you just the way you are.” It was something like that. Or as Dionne Warwick says, “that’s what friends are for.”

I had a great conversation with a really good friend this morning and it just reminded me about how important our friendships are. Then, during my morning Facebook scroll I saw a friends picture that sort of hit home.
Best picture ever…

Friendships, to me, are so important. They go far beyond human interaction. My dogs are my friends. My dogs are probably my best friends. They are my family. They drive me crazy and get on my nerves more than anyone, but I love them more than anything. That's what love is and thats what friends are for. 

If they threw a party, the biggest gift would be from me and the card attached would say, "thank you for being a friend." (5 points if you get that reference)

Add all of this to the, "Reasons I am Vegan" list. Animals are my friends, and never my food.

So take a minute to hug a friend today or tell them you appreciate them, whoever they are. They will appreciate it. 

My best friends are waiting for me to come home...and waiting for their hug.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Corn and Edamame Salad

Edamame is such an underused vegetable. I feel like it got really popular a few years ago and seems to be losing its popularity. I am standing by you, edamame!

My favorite thing about them is that they are just fun to eat. Who doesn’t love sucking a bean out of a pod? So fun! I feel like edamame should be an all star kid food. Not that I have children, so I don’t really know. I feel like as an 8 or 9 year old, I would have really enjoyed eating edamame.

*note to self* Find kid, give them edamame, prove theory….

Of course, you don’t need to buy edamame in the pod. They are just as delicious, without any of the work!

I made an edamame and corn salad for my array of vegan Super Bowl yum yums this weekend. It was so simple and easy and was a nice light addition to the table full of heavy party foods.

It’s okay on its own, but would be even better with the addition of some rice noodles, in a stir fry, or as a side with some grilled tofu. There are lots of other recipes for this type of salad online so do your research. If you like the idea of this flavor combo, check out some different recipes and make the one that you think would be best for you.

Recipe and more photos after the jump.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Jelly Filled Cupcake Donuts

Did someone say cupcake donuts? Jelly filled? It can’t be!?!

Well it is my friends and it’s a whole world of delicious…

I have always wondered how people make pastries with a filling. For whatever reason, I always assumed people used some type of crazy injection system that shot jelly into a pastry. Maybe I thought everyone owns a giant pastry syringe?

Although pastry injectors do exist, this recipe is much easier and does not require a syringe (or any other special tools). In fact, it is probably the easiest vegan baking recipe I have ever seen. All of the ingredients are readily available at any supermarket; it uses one muffin pan, two bowls, and that’s about it.

These were one of the many recipes I made for a Super Bowl party we went to on Sunday. They were a smashing hit, if I do say so myself. I will be posting the rest of my party recipes throughout the week.

The recipe came from Veganomicon, which could very easily be my new favorite cookbook.

Recipe and more pictures after the jump.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Super Bowl Spicy Nuts

Today is the big day… Super Bowl Sunday!

Honestly, I have always looked forward to the super bowl for one reason… the food! I never cared about the game when I was a kid (big surprise); I just always looked forward to going to my Uncles house and eating all of the food. I remember it was the first place I ever had an egg roll. Weird.

Since the Steelers are in the Super Bowl, there is definitely a sense of crazy in Pittsburgh today. Black and yellow has been on the radio non-stop and the stores are packed with people buying chips and beer. You know the drill.

So if you are one of the millions of Americans participating in some Super Bowl antics tonight, here is a recipe for some crazy simple spicy nuts. Although it is not my most favorite recipe ever, they are a good side item to have on your table of (vegan) party yum yums tonight. This is true even if you are just having a food and commercial watching party! (Which, no joke, I heard this loving long haired man talking about at Trader Joe’s yesterday)

So try some spicy mixed nuts! These are ESPECIALLY good served warm over ice cream… For sure!

Recipe and more pictures after the jump.

Friday, February 4, 2011

It’s a Quiet Storm in Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh is where I live. I wouldn't necessarily call it my home town because I didn't grow up here. I moved here in 2006 with husband and that’s that.

Pittsburgh is known for lots of things; the Steelers, bridges, colleges, sandwiches with French fries on it. One thing it is not known for is being a hotbed of vegan delights.

Fortunately we have a couple of places that shine in “Americas Most Livable City” for their vegan fare. One of those is a delightful gem in the Garfield neighborhood called The Quiet Storm. It’s a mixed vegetarian and vegan restaurant that has lots of yummy items on their menu including their famous Spicy Peanut Wrap (OMG YUM), Home fries (delicious), and Cheesy Snake (a vegan hoagie-mmm).

I went to the Quiet Storm a few weeks ago with my friend Lauren for a smorgasbord of vegan yum yums. Doesn’t it just make you feel good when all of the vegan items are clearly labeled on the menu and you don’t have to ask the server a million questions?


Lauren had the Spicy Peanut Wrap, which is a spicy gift from god.
I had the house burger, which is slightly larger than my head... and delicious!
We both had vegan milkshakes. They look equally as good as they taste.

We rolled out with full bellies and happy faces. So raise your glass (of vegan milkshake) to Quiet Storm. It’s a delightful veg restaurant in Pittsburgh and DEFINITELY worth a visit. So, go…. Now…!

And PS, some of the servers are really cute… *bad chubby vegan*

More pictures, after the jump!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Chubby Vegans Get Sick


I hate being sick… It is the worst. I like to live in a dream world and just think that my awesome vegan immune system rocks and I never get sick. Truth be told, I really don’t get sick that often. But when I do, I am kind of a baby.

I admit it and embrace it.

I want to be nurtured and cared for. I want to lay in bed with my dogs and eat ice cream; preferably Trader Joe’s Cherry Chip. So that is my world today. I am sick and feel gross. Wah! *stomping feet*

So instead of posting an awesome new recipe I am posting an inspirational video today. When the world is cold, if you are sick, if you are lonely, or if you just need some inspiration it always helps to know that there are good people out there who can make it better.

Introducing Iowan Zach Wahls…. Zach is the son of two women who spoke up to the Iowa legislature today in favor of gay marriage. His words are eloquent and strong. He represents the voice of a strong future. He makes me proud of his GAY parents for raising such an amazing kid.

And that, friends, makes me feel better!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Happy Birthday (Cake)!

I love baking. It stresses me out, but I love it. It is a little bit like magic when you see what you can create out of mixing different things together.

Husband and I
As much as I like baking, I have also never been against going to a bakery and buying a cake for a birthday party. I don’t understand those people that say you need a homemade cake for your birthday. Honestly, some people just suck at baking and I don’t want their homemade cake. Yeah, I said it.

This year I decided to be adventurous and make a cake for husband’s birthday. We didn’t have a big party or anything but I thought it would be fun to do the whole homemade thing. Plus, I am selfish and wanted to eat the cake too. Don’t judge me… I am chubby for a reason.

Enter vegan god Isa Chandra Moskowitz and her Post Punk Kitchen. I have been sitting on her chocolate cake (and vegan butter cream frosting) for months now and was jazzed that I finally had the opportunity to try it.

I must say this was a really easy cake to make. It did not take long and was DELICIOUS. Although, I have a confession…

My name is Chubby Vegan and I can’t frost a cake.

I just suck at it. I don’t know why really. Its part me being impatient, its part me not having the best tools, it’s part me being clumsy. So pardon the picture of the final product and just enjoy it for what it is. I never said I was a professional cake decorator.

So (let them) eat (vegan) cake!

Recipe and pictures, after the jump!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Favorite Things

In honor of Oprah’s big vegan episode today, I would like to share some of my…

FAVORITE THINGS!!!!! (Imagine your best Oprah impression here)

My favorite things aren’t nearly as elaborate as an iPad or a brand new Volkswagen, but they are delicious. So there…

 Quinoa Pasta 
Quinoa is an all-star grain, an excellent protein source, and would totally win in a fight versus rice or cous cous. Quinoa pasta comes in a smaller box (8 oz), is gluten free, and is just overall amazing. It’s also a great way to get the benefits of quinoa for those with texture issues. Look for it in the gluten free section.

I have a love hate relationship with Trader Joes, but this is one of the products I always buy at TJ’s. They are frozen and heat up in like 30 seconds. Versatile, low in fat, and just scrumptious; they rule...


      Grilled Green Peppers and Onions
I actually vividly remember the first time I had grilled peppers and onions. I was about 11 or 12 and I had them on a Papa Gino’s pizza at my Aunt Lena’s house. gross alert – It was so good, my brother and I burped all the way home to remember it. Green peppers and onions still hold a special place in my heart and in my chubby tummy.

Check out a combination of my favorite things (and a couple of pictures) in a yumtastic and easy dinner idea, after the jump…

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