Let your crock pot do the work: Vegan cheesy garlic bread

A few months ago I made my first batch of vegan monkey bread ever. Actually, I made my first batch of monkey bread ever  (vegan or not).

It was basically by luck that I stumbled across accidentally vegan refrigerated biscuit mix, but because I don’t   like to rely on those types of things I decided to try a dinner version of monkey bread with my own dough mix.

And because I’ve got a lot of crock pot soups and dinners in your future, I figured it’d be rude not to provide you with this uber delicious vegan cheesy garlic pull apart bread … courtesy of your crock pot.

So this recipe CAN be done if you can get your hands on three small canisters of vegan refrigerated biscuit dough, but if you’ve got some extra time, just give this homemade version a whirl.

Vegan Cheesy Garlic Pull Apart Bread
(serves 6-8)
Ingredients:
3.5 cups all purpose flour
4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/3 cup vegetable shortening
1 1/4 cup almond milk
1 stick vegan butter (any kind will do)
2 TBS minced garlic (more or less to taste)
1/2 cup vegan parmesan (I used Galaxy Foods Vegan Sprinkles)
1 TBS Italian seasoning

Directions:
Mix together flour, baking powder and salt. Cut in vegetable shortening until the mixture is coarse crumbles. Stir in milk and knead for three to five minutes. Roll into 1/2 inch thick dough and then using a cookie cutter or knife, break off 50-cent sized pieces of dough. Coat your crock pot with cooking spray and then align the pieces along your crock pot. My crock pot is a biggie, so I don’t really have to layer very many of these pieces. If you do, it’s not a big deal, just add 30-60 minutes to your cooking time.

Once the pieces are layered, take a stick of butter and melt it in your microwave. Add the minced garlic into melted butter and pour over your dough mixture in the crock pot. Top with parmesan cheese (feel free to add more or less to taste) and Italian seasoning.

Cook on high for three hours or until the edges and top of the bread is golden brown. (It took my crock pot about two hours and 45 minutes, but a friend who has a smaller one needed almost four hours).

Whose kitchen will be welcoming a new crock pot?

It’s hard to believe the end of VeganMofo 2012 is here. Somewhere in the middle you just settle into the swing of things and get the hang of blogging all day every day. OK, I’m exaggerating there.

I hope that all of you have had as much fun as I have this time around. It’s only my second VeganMofo, but I hope it’s something that I get to continue for the long-run. I figure if I can make it through a month of cooking and blogging while I’m giant pregnant (around seven weeks to go!!!) then there’s not a whole lot else that will be able to deter me.

Before I get to the point and announce the big winner of the Crock Pot voucher, I wanted to just say thank you times a million if you’re new to my blog and plan to hang around (gory pregnancy details and adorable trick-or-treat photos to follow!) while we welcome the new addition to our family! And thank you times a million to all my veteran readers who have hung in with me for this long! Being vegan can make it hard to find others who understand and follow your lifestyle, so the fact that I’ve connected with the hundreds of you that can at the very least relate, makes it feel far less lonely being cruelty-free.

If you’ve perused through my site and found there are some areas where I haven’t really touched base on some vegan or family issues, feel free to reach out and let me know what you want to see more of. Sometimes I have a tendency to yammer a lot, so be glad most of you are only connecting with me virtually and don’t have to hear me blabber on in person 🙂

AND NOW …

Thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone that entered to win this, we saw a huge response to this over Twitter as well. You guys and gals are great at spreading the word! Thanks to the powers of Random.org, the winner of the Crock Pot giveaway is … Molly Robbin. The first thing she plans on making is the vegan pizza dip (which I recommend everyone try, but if you get addicted and end up making it once a week don’t blame it on me!!)

That’s all I have for you today folks, I hope my followers in the New England area are safe and sound from Hurricane Sandy’s wrath and I hope you all stay tuned! From more giveaways and vegan pregnancy gossip to a few vlogs created by yours truly, we’ve got a lot of fun headed your way in the next few months!

Celebrating pumpkin awesomeness this Fab Five Friday

I’m not sure if fall is my favorite season because of the cooler temperatures, the ability to wear hoodies and your most comfortable pear of jeans, the pretty leaves or the pumpkin flavored everything.

From homemade pumpkin lattes and pumpkin pie oatmeal to pumpkin spice cinnamon buns and pumpkin macaroni and cheese, there has been no shortage of crazy delicious pumpkin recipes churning out of my kitchen.

Except, apparently, there has.

After perusing through fellow Veganmofoers’ blogs, I stumbled across two more pumpkin recipes that never even crossed my pumpkin-obsessed mind.

Over at Fo Reals Mom, she’s been busy professing her love to pumpkin goodies and fall weather as well. In addition to professing her love, she also was kind enough to provide a recipe for Pumpkin gnocchi with spicy  pepita pesto. Holy moly I can only say it certainly looks as good as it sounds. This might be one of those savory pumpkin recipes I just have to try for myself. Because seriously, can you ever go wrong with gnocchi?

And after I eat a heap of that pumpkin gnocchi, I figure it’s only fair to follow up dinner with a pumpkin dessert as well. I’m not going to lie, I don’t think I have yet to actually make a successful vegan rice crispy treat. I should probably divulge that it has less to do with them being vegan and more to do with my inability to follow a recipe. But TahiniToo’s Pumpkin Rice Crispy Treats just might be enough to persuade me into trying to make these sticky, but oh-so-delicious squares one more time.

Once I fall into a sugar coma, I’ll probably need some ridiculously tasty muffins to wake me up from it. Have I mentioned lately my addiction to muffins. They’re like the marriage of something sweet but something that «sounds» like it’s good for you. (Definitely note the quote marks). Kirsten’s Kitchen’s fruit explosion muffins are no exception to this rule. They look absolutely amazing. And with all that fruit jam-packed in (see what I did there?) how can they not be at least a little bit good for you?

After I drooled over all these pumpkin and fruit dishes, I stumbled across Colorado Vegan’s Freestyle Edamame Dip. My little girl Pearyn is basically obsessed with all things edamame, so I can hardly wait to try this out as a sandwich spread for her preschool lunches. Not to mention it wouldn’t hurt me to eat a few more green veggies/protein anyhow.

And since I included something remotely healthy in this round-up, I figured it would only be right to move onto a dessert again. Not only was I basically in love with the name of this blog, but the pictures of Veg*n Amuse Bouche’s Ponche Cupcakes left me with the urge to run out and buy all of the ingredients needed to make these. I’m not sure what Ponche means, but it has something to do with utterly delicious orange and cinnamon together, so it can’t be wrong.

With less than a week left of VeganMofo 2012, I can’t help but wonder what the rest of you have in store for the remaining days.

Tune in here for more crock pot recipes, I’ll be rounding out with dessert ones, not to mention I’ll be announcing the winner of my free crock pot giveaway!

Crock pot full of chick peas AND a marinade recipe

There’s not really a super fancy intro to this recipe. Probably because this recipe isn’t exactly fancy. It’s more a hodgepodge of food we had that needed to be eaten.

Sometimes, you just need a recipe that you can throw together with the ingredients in your pantry, on your counter or in your freezer.

This seems to happen a lot when you’re as giant pregnant as I feel these days. We’re 32 weeks and less than two months away from our due date, it’s an incredibly frightening thing to think that in just eight weeks time we could be a family of four.

The following recipe was one that I threw together because I’m ridiculously obsessed with chick peas, pitas and anything you can throw into the crock pot and forget about. It’s nothing super fancy, but it was Chubby Vegan Husband and Pearyn approved, not to mention I made a super tasty marinade to soak and cook it in.

At the very least you’re going to get a fabulous marinade recipe out of this.

Crock pot chock full of chick peas
(serves 6-8)
Ingredients:
2 cans of chick peas
1 16 oz bag of frozen carrots (you can use fresh, but I usually try to have frozen around for emergencies)
10 oz of sliced mushrooms
1 large red onion diced up
1 cup prepared instant mashed potatoes (or 1 cup of mashed potatoes you made, again, I was lazy)
(These are the veggies I had off hand, you could easily add some broccoli, squash, zucchini or asparagus)

Lemon herb marinade:
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
3/4 cup lemon juice
2 tsp basil
2 tsp minced garlic
2 tsp horseradish (for some zing)
1 tsp onion powder

Directions:
Take the chick peas, frozen carrots, sliced mushrooms, diced up onion and instant mashed potatoes and toss them into your crock pot. Mix together the marinade and pour half over the veggie mixture. Cook on high for three hours, stirring occasionally. Stir in the rest of the marinade and cook on low for another hour to an hour and a half (depending on how you like your mushrooms done).

Serve with rice, quinoa, on bread or in a pita. If you’ve got a particularly odd craving (like a 32-week pregnancy one), I recommend serving it with some homemade vegan tartar sauce!

Not a fan of cooking with your crock pot yet or don’t have one to experiment with? Make sure you enter to win my free crock pot giveaway! The winner will be announced in a week!

Vegan crack potato casserole a la crock pot

If you were to search the term «crack potatoes» on say Pinterest, you’d be overwhelmed with a copious amount of crazy delicious looking potato casserole dishes. We’re talking potatoes every style, from roasted to mashed to hashed, smothered in layers of sometimes cheese, meats and other cholesterol-ridden items.

Lucky for the cruelty-free folk, crack potato casserole is oh so easy to veganize now that Daiya has blessed us with wedges.

So for my very first recipe of VeganMofo 2012, I decided to kick things off with a really cheesy, really decadent, perfect for Sunday morning when you just don’t care how many calories are in your crack potato casserole.

The best part about this recipe? You just pop it in the crock pot and call it day, seriously, it’s that easy. This is one recipe that requires very, very little supervision (which is kind of essential when it comes to being the work-from-home mom of a toddler with another one on the way in December).

Vegan Crack Potato Casserole
(Serves 8-10)
Ingredients:
2 lb bag of frozen potato variety of your choosing (I opted for hash brown)
1 12 oz container of salsa (I say splurge on the fresh variety with extra cilantro)
1 Daiya jalopeno garlic wedge (go all out and use the WHOLE thing)
1 container or 12 oz sour cream (vegan, of course, Tofutti is my go-to)
1/2 cup plain almond milk
1 garlic glove minced

Directions:

Coat the inside of your slow cooker with cooking spray or butter (vegan of course) and dump your frozen potatoes in your crock pot.Turn it up on high. Stir in sour cream, salsa and garlic. While it sits, grab your Daiya wedge and cut into thin, thin slices (like really thing rectangles).

Slice thin rectangles into tiny strips. (I wouldn’t advise using a shredder for Daiya wedges as they’re really soft and creamy, you’ll get more buildup than it’s worth. Also, use the wedge, it’s way creamier and makes for a more gooeyfied casserole as opposed to the shreds). Stir in the entire cut-up wedge. Pour the milk over the potatoes and place the lid on your crock pot.

Let it sit for two hours.

Take a peek at it (let the smell invade your house), stir to make sure there’s nothing too crunchy on the sides and splash a little more almond milk on top if it looks dry (but it really, really shouldn’t). Turn on low and let it cook for one more hour with the lid off. Website maintenance and support.

Pair with your favorite vegan breakfast item, like a pudding pancake or some pumpkin bread (since it is fall after all) or just completely stuff your face with this. Either way, it’s going to become your favorite guilty breakfast item yet.

Slow cooker applesauce, a side dish you don’t want to miss

My husband and I grew up quite differently.

He lived in the middle of nowhere, in a town where the closest McDonalds was 45 minutes away (seriously, that’s what qualifies as middle of nowhere), on enough land that has family maintained a small farm for their own goods.

He had foods straight out of his ground and apple pie and applesauce straight from a tree.

I, on the other hand, have lived within 10 minutes of at least three McDonalds my whole life.

I couldn’t tell you the first time I was on an actual farm and my apple pies usually consisted of the drive-thru McDonalds variety (don’t lie, they WERE delicious) and my applesauce from good ole-fashioned Motts.

To be honest, I didn’t understand why on Earth someone would want to make their own applesauce. It seemed like an awful lot of work to go through cooking the apples, spicing them right and smashing them all up (I picture the grape stomping scene from «I Love Lucy») all by yourself to just have applesauce at the end of it. Now to bake a homemade apple pie, well I would have grown the apples myself.

And then, my slow cooking VeganMofo theme happened and I decided it was time to simplify the whole applesauce making. Thanks to my Crock Pot and my stick blender I’m ready to admit it.

I’m a homemade applesauce conformist.

This recipe is seriously so easy and so much fun to doctor to your own tastes, I have a feeling you’ll wonder what took you so long to leave the applesauce on the shelf.

Slow cooker applesauce
(serves 8-10)
Ingredients:
8 large apples (if you have to ask yourself if they’re large enough, they’re probably more medium.), try to ignore the stigma of «eating» vs «cooking» apple here. We’re going to throw them in a pot and cook them forever, get wild. I used two honeycrisp, two jonagold, two gala and two fujis.
2 TBS butter (I know, it’s weird, it’s not normally in «applesauce,» but I feel like homemade applesauce should be eaten warm and what better way to enjoy it than with a few pads of butter?)
1/4 cup almond milk (this mixed with the butter allows the apples to not stick and burn anywhere)

2 TBS brown sugar (just to add a bit of sweetness)
2 tsp cinnamon powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
Juice from one lemon

*Side note: This can be successfully made using just apples and a little lemon juice, just make sure to grease up the crock pot before hand. Being the Chubby Vegan Mom I had to take applesauce and try to make it taste like pie*

Directions:
Peel and chop up all the apples into quarter-size pieces. (The smaller you make them the shorter the cooking time).

Slice a lemon in half and squeeze the juice out (be careful not to drop lemon seeds in there!). Quick tip, to get the lemon juice all flowing, before cutting the lemon just roll it on the counter a few times with your hand, applying slight pressure. When it starts to get squishier the juice will come out easier.

Add in your butter, almond milk and vanilla extract. Stir around and make sure all the apples are coated. Add brown sugar and cinnamon powder.

Cook on high for three hours, stirring  3-4 times to keep the apples cooking evenly.

After three hours, take your stick blender (we got ours at a second-hand store for $5, woot!) and pulverize the apple chunks until they reach your desired consistency (we like it pureed). You could also do this by hand (it would result in slightly chunkier sauce or in your blender, which would seriously mix it).

Serve with a little brown sugar on top if you’ve got a sweet tooth like me or for a splash of color and something fun, add some broken cinnamon candies into the sauce and stir. You can keep this stuff in the fridge for two weeks (although it probably won’t last that long) or you can freeze it in separate containers to use for baking or just one-time serving needs!

Seriously, if you can peel an apple, you can make homemade applesauce. Trust me.

Week three VeganMofo Fab Five Friday

Something incredibly odd happened this week.

While I perused through page after page of drool-worthy photos, I found myself craving more savory dishes than sweet! (Can we just go ahead and chalk that up to a pregnancy craving?)

I’m so blown away by what everyone is coming up with, half of the recipes I came by I had to do a double take because they didn’t even LOOK vegan!

So with two months left to carry around this growing child, apparently I’m going to need a lot of savory vegan food, who wants to come over and cook for me?

For starters, I think my husband would love me more if I made Baker Bettie’s Vegan Cheddar Ale Soup. I’m not even kidding about this folks. I seriously think he would award me the «Wife of the Year» award if I made this soup just ONCE. Between his love of ales and my love of cheddary soups, I’m pretty sure if I ever find myself in the dog house I can quickly get my exit if I whip up a batch of this stuff.

And if that’s not homey, curl up on the couch enough for you, then the vegan corn beef on rye at Inspired Vegan Eats will probably fit the bill. I seriously stared at this photo for at least five minutes trying to figure out how on earth it could be vegan. I thought I was in Heaven when I figured out how to make my own seitan, but I’m pretty sure that we’ll be making this recipe at least 1,000 times before St. Patricks Day even rolls around.

And just because I’m not completely devoid of ingesting something sugar-filled, I can’t help but mention the Jolly Fox’s Vegan Apple Sour Cream Pie. I’m not going to lie, I am pretty confident in my vegan apple pie. It’s the first pie I learned to truly make from scratch and I’m damn proud of the lattice crust I can whip up for it. But I have never, ever even thought about adding some sour cream to it for a different flavor profile, and now I can’t stop thinking about how much richer it will make it.

Now that we’ve tackled a fabulous compilation of comfort food, I challenge everyone to take a peek at North Vancouver Vegan’s Baked Vegan Schnitzel. Between the (genius) tahini batter to the crushed pretzel «breading» this vegan spin on a traditional German meal had my wishing I was sitting in her kitchen. Not to mention the awesome-looking asparagus with a really simple, but delicious looking cream sauce on top. Talk about a 30 minute taste of Europe!

The last dish that caught my eye this week was the allergy-friendly pesto from Mary Alice Nests (how cute is that name?). I have yet to actually try making my own pesto, although I know many a vegan swear by it, but I’m a sucker for a delicious basil-based sauce on top a bed of rotini. Um, yum. And I have a feeling I’ll be following her suggesting and trying this on a pizza as well, because it looks to good not to!

What were some of your favorites this week? I’m having a hard time coming to grips with the fact that VeganMofo2012 is more than halfway over.

Speaking of over, have you entered to win my super awesome free crock pot yet? Do it, do it!

Simple sweet and sour tofu

SO despite being years deep into my vegan lifestyle, I’m still incredibly hesitant when it comes to tofu. It’s not even that I don’t like it, because let me tell you, there are some Thai places in the area that can do magical things with a block of soybeans.

I, on the other hand, am less of a connoisseur when it comes to whipping those soybeans into something that even closely resembles food. I’m great if we’re just blending up some silken tofu and adding it to a dessert, but usually, the fanciest I get when it comes to dinner tofu is again, blending it up and making vegan «egg» salad out of it. 

But sometimes, and by sometimes I mean basically the last nine months, you get a serious craving that you can’t ignore. Today, was one of those cravings. 

My mind was made up, we were going to eat sweet and sour tofu and since this is VeganMofo after all and I owe you lovely readers a crock pot recipe, I decided to knock both these things out at once.

If you’re the kind of person that digs tofu all on it’s own, you can skip the step where I dredge it in some cornstarch and lightly brown it in a skillet with some butter. I’m just the kind of vegan that can’t seem to get down with naked tofu.

Simple Sweet and Sour Tofu

(serves 6-8)

Ingredients:

1 block of extra firm tofu

1 head of broccoli

3 bell peppers (I went with red, yellow and green)

1 large onion

3 carrots (I cut them into inch-long strips)

1 can of pineapple chunks (this can be small or large depending on your love of pineapple)

Brown rice (or whatever kind of grain/vessel you’d like to put your sweet and sour tofu on)

Cornstarch (you’re going to roll your tofu squares around in this)

2 TBS butter

1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce

Sweet and Sour sauce ingredients:

1 cup rice vinegar

1/3 cup brown sugar

3 TBS ketchup

1/4 cup pineapple juice (you can use the juice from the canned pineapple if you want to get wild and crazy)

4 TBS cornstarch 

2 TBS soy sauce

Directions:

We’ll start with the sauce so we can give it some time to thicken. In a small saucepan on medium heat, stir the rice vinegar, ketchup, pineapple juice and soy sauce. Add in the brown sugar and stir until dissolved. Bring the sauce to a low boil and quickly whisk in the cornstarch. Once fully mixed. remove from heat and let it sit. 

Next, dice up your broccoli, carrots, onion and bell peppers. Turn your crock pot on low and allow the veggies, pineapple chunks and soy sauce to warm. Now it’s time to pay attention to your tofu. Squeeze out the extra water (I use a kitchen towel) and then cut the tofu into smaller squares (your personal preference here). Pour the cornstarch into a small bowl and roll the tofu squares around, allowing a light dusting to cover each side. Set the tofu aside.

In a skillet, melt your butter on medium heat. Toss the cornstarched tofu squares in and let them lightly brown, turning with your spatula only enough to brown each side. Once lightly browned and slightly crisp, toss this into the crock pot. Pour the sweet and sour sauce all over and stir. Cook on high for three hours, stirring occasionally. Next, cook on low for five hours. 

You can adjust the cook time as you see fit, this allowed for most of our bell peppers, onion and broccoli to soften, but still left the carrots on the crisper side, which was a nice texture with all the other smooshy stuff.

Serve over your favorite rice, grain or whatever you’d prefer!

You also might like: 

When someone gives you chocolate, you eat it

A little over one week ago I got the email most vegans dream of.

Someone fabulous from Vegan Cuts wanted to know if I’d be interested in reviewing some of the products that appear on the website. Needless to say, after I got done jumping up and down on my bed, I immediately said «heck yes!»

What is Vegan Cuts you might ask? Well, if you’re not hip to it yet, you will be after this, trust me. It’s a website that offers a wide range of vegan products, from beauty to food items, usually at a «special offer» rate. Think like a morally-charged spin-off of Groupon or Woot for vegans. Who said vegans didn’t have a place of their own?

As if being offered to review stuff wasn’t awesome enough, I soon received an email that said the first item I would get to review would be chocolate. Dark, organic, gluten free chocolate from a little company known as Brooklyn Dark. (Apparently you all have been listening when I talk about my love of anything sweet. Oh who am I kidding, I love anything that has to do with food).

Before I indulge about how absolutely delicious this stuff was (and trust me, I’m not just saying this because it’s a review), I have to shout from the rooftops what made me fall in love with Brooklyn Dark.

Not only are they environmentally sound and loaded with awesome things like hemp, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds and cranberries, they’re pretty straight forward when it comes to their stance on why their chocolate is vegan: «Dairy is harmful to humans and to the animals involved in its production. We at Brooklyn Dark seek to maximize good decisions to help make society more humane.»

 

The company currently offers four different chocolate bars: Moroccan Spice, Open Sesame, Orange Silk and Classic Hemp. Weighing in at a little over two ounces each, they all contain 63% cacao, no preservatives and are 100% vegan. How do you not fall in love with an ethically sound company?

The best part? Being moral actually tastes as good as it feels, particularly when it comes to this product. Even more exciting than this? Vegan Cuts is offering a Brooklyn Dark Chocolate Sampler deal at 30% off the normal price.

And if that’s not generous enough, you can save an extra 10% off your order (not valid on shipping) by entering the discount code «BLOGFRIEND» when checking out through October 31, 2012. (See, who said it didn’t pay to be a reader of Chubby Vegan Mom?)

You’ll be lucky enough to receive all four of these flavors, because honestly, you’d have a hard time picking which one to get. My favorite was hands down the open sesame bar, which had the same rich, dark chocolate bar the classic hemp flavor offered, but had a fair share of sesame seeds poking through the super gorgeous exterior. Think a more sophisticated chocolate crunch bar.

 

Chubby Vegan Dad and daughter each preferred the classic hemp flavor, although orange silk was a close second. While the classic hemp bar is smooth and rich throughout, the orange silk bar has surprise pockets of orange, cranberry and sunflower pieces throughout.

And seriously, you don’t want to forget the moroccan spice bar, which was by far the most unique of them all. This bar is for the person you can never find the right gift for. It’s dark chocolate which seems more refined and gourmet by nature, but with spices like black pepper and cumin mixed in, it makes for an awesome experience and a chocolate flavor you’ve never had.

Before Chubby Vegan Dad and daughter wolfed down all of my classic hemp bar, I was able to use some of it to make my VeganMofo crock pot inspired hot chocolate. Be forewarned, this is not your run-of-the-mill hot cocoa. This is rich and amazing and will probably ensure that you never make the regular old cocoa powder variety EVER again.

Crock pot hot chocolate
(serves: 4-6)
Ingredients:
2 cups vanilla vegan creamer
1 cup vegan whipped cream (I like to use the Healthy Top variety)
3 cups vanilla almond milk
8 oz of chocolate shavings/chips (I used about 2 oz of my Brooklyn Dark chocolate bars, diced thin, 2 oz of vegan white chocolate chips and 4 oz of vegan chocolate chips).

Directions:
Plug in your crock pot and turn the settings on low. Stir in creamer, whipped cream and almond milk until fully blended. Add chocolate chips/shavings and stir. Cook this mixture on low for two hours, coming back to whisk every 15-20 minutes.

This recipe is perfect for family gatherings when you’re going to be serving oodles of hot chocolate to kiddies or adults (I don’t judge). Instead of splashing it all over the stove you can just plop these ingredients into your crock pot and check back periodically. Minimal fuss and minimal mess.

Once it’s blended turn your crock pot to warm and enjoy a cup of super fluffy, frothy hot chocolate with your favorite garnish, whether it be more vegan whipped cream or vegan marshmallows.

Soups, stews and buffalo chick pea chili, oh my!

Happy VeganMofo Week Three! (Holy cow, have we really finished two weeks already?)

When I first got hip to Pinterest, I went a little wild and pinned SO many recipes I don’t think I’ll ever actually make it through them all unless I made 15 meals a day. So after I got over my pinning obsession, I went through and decided to keep the recipes I was really going to make and to get rid of the ones that sounded good but I knew wouldn’t be happening in this lifetime.

If you follow me on Pinterest, you might notice I don’t pin a lot of actual vegan recipes. Instead, I pin all the food that sounds ridiculously amazing and decide I’d prefer to do my own vegan version of it. (This helps a lot considering I have a serious issue trying to follow recipes anyway).

When I came across a recipe for buffalo chicken chili, I knew it was something that had to be veganized. Aside from the chicken part, there really wasn’t a whole lot of anything special this recipe needed. And while there are a plethora of awesome vegan chicken options, I decided against using the mock protein and opted to use chick peas instead. (We tend to use chick peas in place of chicken and lentils in place of ground beef for most of our recipes).

The best part about this chili isn’t just that you can put it in your slow cooker and forget about it, but that you can get super fancy if you want and set out a whole smorgasbord of topping options to garnish this utterly amazing chili with. I highly, highly recommend some ranch vegan sour cream, but you could get crazy and add some cheddar shreds, chives or «blue cheese» crumbles too.

Buffalo chick pea chili
(serves 8-10)
Ingredients:
1 32 oz container of no-chicken stock (vegetable stock will totally work here too)
3 cups of water (you can add a little more/less depending on what consistency you like)
2 15 oz cans of diced tomatoes (or you can be old fashioned and dice your own, whatev)
1 15 oz can of tomato sauce
1 15 oz can of kidney beans
1 15 oz can chick peas (we went low or no sodium for all of the above canned goods)
8 oz of your favorite pasta
8 oz frozen cauliflower
1 16 oz bag sweet white corn
1 large onion diced up
1/4 cup minced garlic
3 TBS chili powder
2 TBS cumin
1/2 cup buffalo sauce (or more to taste, we picked this up at our local health foods store, but you can make your own simple version by mixing your favorite hot sauce with some butter, a tiny bit of sugar and a splash of ketchup if you want to make it fun)

Directions: 
Boil your pasta on the stove (yeah, the old fashioned way).
Turn your crock pot on high and dump the no-chicken stock, tomatoes, tomato sauce, kidney beans, chick peas and buffalo sauce in.
Dice up carrots, onion and peppers and toss them into the crock pot. Add garlic, chili powder and cumin. Toss in the pasta once it’s done and cook all these on high, stirring occasionally (every 15-20 minutes) for an hour. Cook on low for another hour.
Serve with your favorite chili topping!

*I plan on doing a recipe during dinner week which utilizes dry beans in the slow cooker, I’m sure you’ll all be drooling in anticipation until then!*

You also might like: