Tag Archives: vegetarian recipes

Spinach, Pear, and Cranberry Salad

So Friday’s cranberry discussion got me in the mood for a nice cranberry spinach salad.  Here’s the recipe for one of my favorite go-to lunches.

Spinach, Pear and Cranberry Salad

2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar

2 tsp. whole grain mustard

1 tsp. sugar

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

1/2 cup chopped pecans

1 (10 oz.) bag baby spinach

2 firm, ripe medium pears, quartered, cored and thinly sliced

1/4 small red onion, thinly sliced

1/3 cup sweetened dried cranberries

1.  For the dressing, in a small bowl whisk together vinegar, mustard and sugar.  Gradually whisk in oil, whisking until incorporated.  Season with salt and pepper to taste; set aside (you can also use a vinaigrette of your choice).

2.  In a small skillet cook pecans over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until lightly toasted (do not over-brown).  Remove from skillet and let cool.

3.  In a large bowl combine spinach, pears and onion.  Whisk dressing, and drizzle over spinach; toss to coat.  Sprinkle with cranberries and pecans and serve.

This is a great starter for Thanksgiving or just something light for a winter lunch.

Every Monday is a “Reci-bee” post, where I share my favorite recipes, recipe collections, and cooking and baking hints and tips. 

Leave a comment

Filed under salad recipes

Oven-Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Brussels sprouts are a new found love of mine.  My parents hate them…so I never had to deal with tossing them in my mom’s plants or feeding them to my dog.  But when my friend introduced me to these little green veggies about a year or so ago, I was instantly in love.

Here’s a delicious recipe for Brussels sprouts that doesn’t sacrifice nutrition and is high in flavor.

Bumped Up Brussels Sprouts

–6 oz of pancetta or bacon, diced

–4 tablespoons capers, drained

–2 pints Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved

–1 1/2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

–3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

–Salt and pepper

–1/3 cup pine nuts

–1/4 cup currants

–1/4 cup raisins


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a medium pan over medium heat cook the pancetta and capers. Remove from pan, reserving a little of the pancetta fat in the pan. Add the Brussels sprouts to the pan and cook over medium heat to begin to brown.  Dress with balsamic and olive oil, a little salt (capers and pancetta are salty) and pepper. Place into the oven and roast, tossing a couple of times, until nicely caramelized, about 15 to 20 minutes.

Put the pine nuts in a small, dry, saute pan and toast over a low flame, tossing a couple of times, just until lightly browned, 3 or 4 minutes.

Once the sprouts are ready, remove them from the oven and put into a big serving bowl. Add the pancetta, the capers, pine nuts, currants and raisins. Toss and check for seasoning. Serve.

Every Monday is a “Reci-bee” post, where I share my favorite recipes, recipe collections, and cooking and baking hints and tips. 

Leave a comment

Filed under side dish recipes

Veggie Burgers!

Here’s a recipe that’s budget friendly, figure friendly, and kitchen friendly!

Friendly Food! 🙂

Vegetarian Chickpea Burgers

One 15-oz can chickpeas, rinsed and drained

2/3 cup packed flat leaf parsley leaves

2/3 cup breadcrumbs

Salt and pepper to taste

1 large egg, lightly beaten

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

4 slices of cheddar cheese, optional

4 hamburger buns

Ketchup, mustard, etc. for serving

1.  In a food processor, pulse the chickpeas and parsley until finely chopped.  Transfer the mixture to a medium bowl and stir in the bread crumbs and salt and pepper to taste.  Stir in the egg and form the mixture into 4 patties, each about 2/3 inch thick.

2.  In a large skillet (or in your Forman Grill), heat the oil over medium heat.  Cook the burgers for 4 minutes, then flip and cook for three minutes more.  Top with cheese and let cook one more minute.

Every Monday is a “Reci-bee” post, where I share my favorite recipes, recipe collections, and cooking and baking hints and tips. 

Leave a comment

Filed under vegetarian recipes

Baked Caprese Salad

Hard to believe that Labor Day is right around the corner!  How fast did this year fly, right?

Anyway, here’s a great appetizer for your Labor Day picnic…or any day of the year.  It’s light and refreshing and, if it’s too hot, you don’t even have to bake it.  Just assemble as necessary and eat cold.

Baked Caprese Salad

Baked Caprese Salad

  • 1 loaf baguette, cut into 1/2-inch thick slices (about 30 to 36 slices)
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 5 Roma tomatoes, sliced
  • 1 1/4 pounds fresh mozzarella, sliced
  • 1 bunch fresh basil leaves, stemmed


Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

Arrange the sliced baguette bread on a baking sheet. Brush with some of the olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Bake until the bread is pale golden and crisp, about 5 minutes. Remove from the oven. Top each slice of bread with a slice of tomato and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Top each slice of tomato with a slice of mozzarella and sprinkle with salt. Return the baking sheet to the oven until the cheese and tomato are warmed, about 5 minutes.

Arrange the toasts on a serving platter. Top each toast with a basil leaf. Using the brush, drizzle the remaining olive oil over the basil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, and serve.

Every Monday is a “Reci-bee” post, where I share my favorite recipes, recipe collections, and cooking and baking hints and tips. 

Leave a comment

Filed under salad recipes

Tabouleh Salad Lettuce Wraps

Hello, readers!  Well, I’m back from an awesome camping trip and not quite ready for Monday…however, here we are.

I hope all of you had a great weekend!  Today I’d like to share a great recipe for quick lunches, dinners, parties, etc.  It can be made 3-4 days in advance and can be served as a main dish, side dish, or appetizer.  Stove tops, ovens, microwaves, and hot plates need not apply.  This is your ultimate “chop and drop” recipe.

BONUS—It’s filled with vitamins and veggies…so stock up and fill up!

Tabouli Salad on a Lettuce Leaf

Tabouli Salad

1 box Tabouli salad mix

(Will also need olive oil and lemon juice, according to most box directions)

1/2 – 1 container cherry tomatoes, sliced in halves

1 cucumber, sliced into small pieces

Feta cheese (optional)

2 TB parsley, sliced and chopped

Lettuce leaves for serving (optional)

  1. Make tabolui according to package directions.  Let sit in refrigerator for at least 1 hour (I wait to add any veggies to the mix while refrigerating.  I usually just make the tabolui and add everything else right before serving).
  2. Add tomatoes, cucumber, cheese, and parsley.  Mix to combine.
  3. Serve as a side dish or in individual lettuce leaves.  This salad can also be served with meat or on crackers.
  4. Every Monday is a “Reci-bee” post, where I share my favorite recipes, recipe collections, and cooking and baking hints and tips. 

Leave a comment

Filed under salad recipes

Toasted Ravioli

Worried that tomorrow’s ravioli leftovers are going to be Blah-City?  Not to fear!  Toss them in olive oil and pop them in the oven or into a wok and get ready for a delicious leftover makeover!



1 package cheese ravioli, cooked, drained and cool

olive oil

spices of your choosing (you could even use a pre-packed spice mix to save $$)

wok or cookie sheet

Toss your ravioli in the olive oil and spices.  If you’re using the oven, place them on a non-stick-sprayed cookie sheet and bake until toasty brown at 350 degrees (about 10 minutes, depending on your oven).  Flip and cook on the other side.

If you’re using a wok, heat oil and carefully drop your ravioli in a few at a time.  Stir occasionally and cook until golden brown on each side.  Remove from the pan and season right away.

Plate your toasted ravioli and serve with a bowl of maranara sauce for dipping.


Every Monday is a “Reci-bee” post, where I share my favorite recipes, recipe collections, and cooking and baking hints and tips. 


Filed under appetizer recipes

Soft Asian Summer Rolls with Dipping Sauce

Good Monday morning, everybody!

I hope all of you had a wonderful weekend.  I went to the Taste of Chicago with my mom on Saturday and it was a blast!  I love the Taste.  We go every year and it’s just so much fun to spend the day downtown and eat.

Anyway, one of the booths inspired me to do a little Asian cooking on Sunday…so here we have some delicious summer rolls that are just as easy to make as they are to eat…

Soft Asian Summer Rolls

For Dipping Sauce

1 tablespoon sugar

2 teaspoons warm water

¼ cup rice vinegar

1 teaspoon chili sauce (I used chili powder instead and it was fine)

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

1 teaspoon soy sauce

1 tablespoon finely shredded carrot

1 scallion, thinly sliced

For the Rolls

6 medium shrimp, peeled and deveined (I am notorious for overcooking shrimp…so I used precooked cocktail shrimp and it was just fine.  If you don’t like shrimp, you can leave them out and make vegetarian rolls.)

2 oz rice noodles (these may be hard to find depending on where you live.  If you can’t find them, you can replace them with the oriental Ramen noodles)

6 rice paper rounds or egg roll wraps

12 basil leaves

12 large fresh mint leaves

½ cup shredded carrot

1.  To make dipping sauce, in a small bowl, dissolve the sugar in the warm water, then add the remaining sauce ingredients and stir until well combined.  Refrigerate until ready to use.  You can prepare the dipping sauce a day in advance.

2.  To make the rolls, cook the shrimp in boiling water for 2 minutes, and cut in half lengthwise; set aside.  If you’re using cocktail shrimp, simply remove the tail of 6-8 shrimps and set aside.  Cook the rice noodles/Ramen noodles according to the package directions.

3.  Line up the remaining ingredients on paper plates before beginning to make rolls.  Fill a large bowl or saucepan with very warm water that is not too hot to touch.  Place a rice paper round in the hot water and soak for 30 to 60 seconds, until it is pliable and the pattern on the round is barely visible.  Remove from the water and place on a clean work surface.  Place 2 basil leaves on the inner edge of the moistened round, about 1 inch from the edge and leaving about 1 inch on each side.  Top with about ¼ cup of the cooked rice noodles.  Place 2 shrimps on top.  Top with a heaping tablespoon of the carrots, then 2 leaves of mint*.

4.  Bring the edge of the round over the filling, fold in the sides, and roll.  Place the finished roll under a damp cloth or paper towel.  Repeat with the remaining rice paper rounds and filling ingredients.  The rolls may be prepared several hours before serving and stored covered by a  damp paper towel in a airtight container in the refrigerator.

5.  When ready to serve, slice the rolls in half on the diagonal and serve, cut ends up, with the dipping sauce.

*If you can’t find rice wraps, you can use egg roll wraps.  They have them at major grocery stores in the produce section (strange, I know).  Follow the directions on the package to prepare the wraps and fill as you would the rice round.  The egg roll wraps will need to be cooked, however, so heat up some oil in a pan and place 2-3 rolls in the hot oil, about 1-2 minutes on each side (watch carefully because as the oil heats, the cooking time will decrease).  Remove and let rest on some paper towels.

Every Monday is a “Reci-bee” post, where I share my favorite recipes, recipe collections, and cooking and baking hints and tips. 

Leave a comment

Filed under dinner recipes

Black Bean and Corn Salsa

Good morning, everyone!  I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend!  My weekend was quite emotional…as many of you LOST fans will understand.  What a beautiful and touching way to end one of the best shows ever to grace TV.  If you’ve never seen LOST, I highly recommend you check it out.  Okay, back to business…

Due to the fact that it’s been about a zillion degrees here in Chicago, and due to the fact that LOST was ending this weekend, I didn’t do much baking/cooking; however, I do have an easy chip and dip recipe for you today that’s both sweet and a little spicy and a great way to top chips, salad, chicken, or fish.

Black Bean and Corn Salsa

1 envelope “Good Season Italian Salad Dressing and Recipe” mix

1 can black beans, drained and rinsed

1 bag frozen corn, thawed

1 cup mango (about 1 mango), chopped into bite sized pieces

1/2 cup red bell pepper (about half the pepper), chopped into bite sized pieces

1/3 cup cilantro

1/4 cup lime juice

1.  Combine all these ingredients in a bowl and mix…and there you have it!  Serve with chips, fish, chicken, etc.

Hope all of you are keeping cool wherever you are!

Happy Monday!  🙂

Every Monday is a “Reci-bee” post, where I share my favorite recipes, recipe collections, and cooking and baking hints and tips. 

Leave a comment

Filed under side dish recipes

Chop and Drop Oriental Salad

This recipe was given to me by my grandma last summer.  I was a little worried at first, only because I hate Ramen noodles…but this salad is so amazingly good.  It’s perfect just by itself or inside a lettuce wrap.  Hope you enjoy!

Oriental Salad

Oriental Salad

1 package of coleslaw lettuce mix

1 cup sun flower seeds (this is more of a ‘to your liking’ kind of thing.  If you don’t like sunflower seeds, you can use almonds or walnuts)

1 bunch green onions, chopped

1 package oriental flavored Ramen noodles

3/4 cup canola oil

1/2 cup sugar

1/3 cup taragon vinegar (not only do I not know if this even exists in real life, but I couldn’t even tell you where to find it.  I improvise and use 1/3 cup white vinegar and chop up some taragon leaves and let the two get happy together.  Works perfectly)

The dressing

1.  In a large bowl combine the coleslaw, sunflower seeds, and green onions.  Open the Ramen noodles and set the flavor packet aside.  Crush up the noodles into the coleslaw mix.

2.  In another bowl, whisk the canola oil, taragon vinegar, sugar, and flavor packet together.  Pour over your salad and mix/toss until everything is combined.  Cover it with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 2 hours (the longer, the better!).

This is a great dish for a party because it can be made well in advance.  It’s also perfect as a meal that, if made early in the week, will last you for the remainder of the week.  It could be a side dish or a main dish.  Add some grilled chicken and you’re good to go!

Every Monday is a “Reci-bee” post, where I share my favorite recipes, recipe collections, and cooking and baking hints and tips. 


Filed under salad recipes