Healthy Holiday Recipes

Healthy Holiday Recipes

The holiday season means celebrations with lots of food, but you can still have delicious food that's good for you as well! Here are some of our favorite healthy alternative recipes to classic holiday dishes:

Vegan Cheesy Garlic Star Bread
(from Garlic Head)

4 tbs flax meal + 8 tbs water, set aside in the fridge to chill for 10 minutes (or 3 eggs)
3/4 cup almond milk
1 package instant yeast
2 TBS maple syrup or honey
3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp salt
8 TBS vegan butter
4 cloves garlic, grated
1/4 cup nutritional yeast or parmesan cheese
3/4 cup chopped fresh herbs of choice (parsley, basil, dill, or sage)
Coconut milk, for brushing (or egg wash)

1. Prepare your flax egg and let it gel in the fridge.
2. In a large bowl, combine ROOM TEMPERATURE milk, instant yeast, flour, sugar, flax eggs, and salt. Knead it in the bowl with your hands until no longer sticky. Cover with a towel and let rest in a warm place for one hour, until doubled in size.
3. While dough is resting, in a small bowl combine cashew parmesan (or nutritional yeast), vegan butter, and chopped fresh herbs until combined. Set aside Split the now-rested dough into four equal sized balls. Roll each to a large pancake shape (9-11 inches in diameter). Let each rest for 15 minutes. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
4. Start stacking! Place one "pancake" on parchment-lined sheet and cover in 1/3 of the herb butter. Repeat this process with other three discs, leaving the top of the final round bare and then coat in a thin layer of coconut milk (this mimics an egg wash to give our star bread some shine).
5. Place a drinking glass in the center of the circle stack (2 inches in diameter recommended). Press down slightly. This serves as a guide while you're cutting the star edges. You will not cut anything underneath the glass. Working around the outside of the glass, cut the dough stack into 16 equal pieces. If it's helpful, think of the dough stack as a clock. Using a sharp knife or pizza cutter, make four incisions at the noon, three, six, and nine positions. Cut all the way through the stack each time. Then slice each of these quadrants into four individual strips. You will end up with 16 total strips.
6. Taking two strips at a time, twist them each around themselves ONCE so that the top is visible again. Press these two strips together and smooth into a "point" at the end. You will end up having eight star points total .Brush the entire loaf with coconut milk once more and bake until golden, around 30 minutes. Best enjoyed warm!
7. This bread will keep on the counter covered in plastic for up to two days. Freezer storage is best after this time.

Vegan Mashed Potatoes
(from Delish)

3 lb. gold creamer potatoes, halved
Kosher salt
1/3 c. extra-virgin olive oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 sprigs fresh rosemary, plus more for garnish
6 tbsp. vegan butter
Freshly ground black pepper
Freshly chopped parsley, for serving

1. In a large pot, cover potatoes with water and season with salt. Bring to a boil and cook until totally soft, 15 to 18 minutes. Drain and return to pot. Use a potato masher to mash potatoes until smooth.
2. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan over medium heat, heat oil and rosemary then add garlic and cook until fragrant, 1 minute. Discard rosemary and pour oil over potatoes. Add butter and stir until completely combined and creamy. Season with salt and pepper.
3. Transfer potatoes to a serving bowl and season with more pepper and garnish with rosemary and parsley.

Best Vegan Pot Pie
(from A Couple Cooks)

1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
2 teaspoons dried sage
1/2 cup refined coconut oil (room temperature)
7 tablespoons ice water

For the filling:
1 large shallot
1 15-ounce can cannellini beans
About 1/3 cup olive oil, divided
1 small sweet potato (about 1/2 pound)
1 small Yukon gold potato (about 1/2 pound)
1 medium yellow onion
1 small or 1/2 large red bell pepper
8 ounces baby bella mushrooms
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon ground thyme
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups vegetable broth
1 tablespoon soy sauce
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1. Preheat oven to 450°F.
2. Make the crust: In a medium bowl, mix all-purpose flour, kosher salt, baking powder, and sage. Measure 1/2 cup of room temperature coconut oil and then drop small blobs of the coconut oil into the flour mixture. Use a pastry blender to cut it into the flour mixture until a coarse meal texture is obtained.
3. Sprinkle 7 tablespoons ice water over the flour, mixing gradually with fork until the dough sticks together. Add additional water by the tablespoon until the dough comes together with your hands, but is not sticky (add a bit more water or flour if necessary). Form the dough into a ball and refrigerate in a covered container until the filling is ready, or at least 30 minutes.
4. Make the filling: Slice the shallot into rings. Drain and rinse the cannellini beans, shaking them dry. Place a medium skillet over medium-high heat and pour in olive oil until the bottom of the skillet is just covered. Add the shallot and beans to the skillet in a single layer. Cook without stirring for 3 to 4 minutes until the bottoms are browned and crispy, then stir and cook without stirring for another 4 to 5 minutes until crispy and fully browned. Remove from heat and add a pinch of kosher salt.
5. Meanwhile, dice the sweet potato and Yukon gold potato into 1/2 inch cubes. Dice the onion. Dice the pepper. Slice the mushrooms.
6. In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the sweet potatoes, Yukon gold potatoes, onion, pepper, and mushrooms. Cook, stirring frequently, until the potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes. When tender, reduce the heat to low. Add the spices and flour and stir until the vegetables are coated. Add the vegetable broth, soy sauce, and kosher salt. Stir for about 4 minutes until the broth thickens into a sauce. Remove from the heat and add the crispy beans and shallots. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired.
7. Pour the filling into a deep dish 9” pie pan or small baking dish, or into several smaller baking dishes.
8. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and roll it out on a floured surface until it is large enough to cover the pan. Work quickly as the dough is easiest to work with while it’s just come to room temperature. Drape the dough over the pan and remove excess dough. Lightly crimp the edges (it’s a rustic pie, so it doesn’t have to be perfect!). Cut 4 small slits to vent for steam in the center of the crust. In a small bowl, mix a few drops of water with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and lightly brush it over the dough.
9. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until golden and crispy. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for several minutes before serving.

Holiday Stuffed Butternut Squash With Vegan Sausage, Mushrooms, And Almond Ricotta
(from Carrots and Flowers)

1 large butternut squash
1 vegan apple sage sausage link
1 shallot
2-3 cloves garlic
1 cup mushrooms
1 tsp sage leaves, chiffoned (about 2-3 leaves)
½ cup dried quinoa
1 cup vegetable broth
⅓ cup fresh cherries
2 Tbsp grapeseed or olive oil
¼ cup almond ricotta
sea salt and cracked pepper to taste

1. Preheat the oven to 425F. Split the butternut squash in half and scoop out seeds, and cross hatch the squash with a knife. Spread 1 Tbsp oil on the fleshy part of the squash. Follow with a generous sprinkle of sea salt and pepper. Place the squash halves oiled side down on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 45-55 minutes, until the outside of the squash is easily pierced with a fork.
2. Add the quinoa and vegetable broth to a rice cooker and cook. Fluff the quinoa with a fork when it's done cooking.
3. Heat 1 Tbsp oil in a pan on medium heat. Add the shallots and garlic. Cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring often. Add the vegan sausage and mushrooms. Cook for 4-5 minutes until most of the liquid is released. Add the cooked quinoa, cherries, and sage. Stir for 1-2 minutes until the quinoa is hot.
4. Scoop a generous amount of the quinoa mixture into the squash halves. Top each with 2 Tbsp almond ricotta. Garnish with more herbs and cherries. Enjoy!

Roasted Brussels Sprouts With Balsamic-Maple Glaze
(from Yay For Food

2 lbs Brussels sprouts, rinsed, trim ends, remove bruised outer leaves, and cut lengthwise
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
4 tbsp balsamic vinegar
3 tbsp maple syrup

1. Preheat oven to 425°F and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper.
2. In a large bowl, toss Brussels sprouts in olive oil, salt and black pepper.
3. Place Brussels sprouts on the baking sheet in a single layer and roast for 25-30 minutes; stirring and rotating the baking sheet halfway through.
4. Meanwhile, prepare the balsamic-maple glaze. Heat a small saucepan under medium-high. Add balsamic vinegar, maple syrup, and a small pinch of salt. Stir frequently until the sauce thickens and glaze forms, about 4-5 minutes.
5. Drizzle Brussels sprouts with the glaze. Salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.

Vegan Candy Cane Truffles
(from Baked By Clo)

200 g Dark chocolate with at least 60% cocoa solids (7oz)
100 ml Full-fat coconut milk (⅓ cup + 1 tbsp)
200 g Vegan white chocolate (7oz)
½ Teaspoon peppermint extract
1-2 Vegan-friendly candy canes (crushed)

1. Melt the dark chocolate over a low heat.
2. In a separate pan or pot, slowly heat the coconut milk until bubbles are just beginning to form at the sides.
3. Pour the coconut milk over the melted chocolate and let it sit for 5 minutes without stirring. After the 5 minutes, stir well until you have a slightly thick, smooth mixture.
4. Transfer this mixture into a dish and refrigerate for 2 hours, or until the mixture is firm enough to roll into balls.
5. Once the mixture has chilled, take 1 tablespoon at a time and roll it into a ball. You should end up with 12-15 truffle balls. Place them back in the fridge for now.
6. Melt the white chocolate in a pan over a very low heat, add the peppermint extract and mix. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the chocolate to cool down for a minute or two. Don't leave it too long as white chocolate sets a lot quicker than dark.
7. Roll each chilled truffle ball into the melted white chocolate and sprinkle some pieces of crushed candy cane on top.
8. Place them back in the fridge to set for 1 more hour before serving.

Vegan Snickerdoodles
(from The Simple Veganista)

2 ½ cups (350g) flour (spelt, white whole wheat or all-purpose flour)
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
generous pinch of mineral salt
1 cup (225g) vegan butter, at room temp (I love Miyokos)
1 cup (225g) organic pure cane sugar
¼ cup (56g) unsweetened applesauce (see notes)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
For rolling cookies:
3 tablespoons organic pure cane sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with silpat or parchment paper, or lightly grease with oil.
2. In a mixing bowl, combine the flour, cream of tarter, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
3. In a medium sized mixing bowl, using a spoon, mix together the sugar and butter until creamy, about 2 minutes. This can also be done with a stand alone mixer or hand blender (I usually just use a bowl and spoon). Then add the vanilla and applesauce, mix to combine. Add flour mixture and stir just until flour is incorporated. Dough should be firm and thick. If the dough is too soft, chill it in the refrigerator for 15 minutes to 1 hour until it stiffens a bit. This will help keep them from spreading too much.
4. In a small bowl, combine the sugar and cinnamon for rolling. Roll dough into about 1 inch balls. To keep them uniform, use either a 1 tablespoon measuring spoon or 1 tablespoon scooper.
5. Place cinnamon sugar rolled balls on prepared baking sheet, leaving about 2 inches between balls. Bake in center of the oven for 8 – 9 minutes. For a little crispier cookie, bake for 10 minutes.
6. Let cool for a few minutes on the pan, they may be too soft just from the oven to move to a wire rack. Once cooled, enjoy!

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