Busy days at the office, then straight to evening activities, the kid’s games, or the gym? As spring rolls into summer, our days get longer both in terms of light as well as hours at work. What I’ve collected here are three quick and easy recipes that I hope will help make your busy life a little easier on those nutty days. The first is a tasty treat to share with co-workers and family alike, and the best part is – just three ingredients! Nothing could be simpler than that. The second is a protein-packed dip that you can bring along for yourself that’s super healthy, and you can mix it up with some yummy crusty bread or some delicious fresh veggies to delight your taste buds. Lastly is one of my all-time favorite sandwich recipes and something I whip up on a regular basis. An interesting note, with the exception of the local honey, which is from a friend, the Olive Oil and Salt which were in our pantry already, and the mayonnaise, which is from Whole Foods, all of the ingredients came from our local Food Lion and IGA – which makes these very affordable.
You’ll probably notice that all three of these recipes are vegan or vegetarian. Guess what – you won’t even notice! When I first switched my diet over, one of my go-to easy meals was the tuna fish sandwich. When I came home late and exhausted, and I didn’t want to whip up a huge meal, tuna was quick and easy. My Chickpea of the Sea sandwich is most definitely not tuna fish, but it is hearty and healthy and completely customizable to whatever you want to add into it. For today, I actually put it onto a gluten-free hotdog bun I had left-over from Memorial Day weekend and it turned out delicious….
- The Easiest Chocolate Bars You’ll Ever Make
Time: 5 minutes – seriously!
- ½ cup plus 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
- ¼ cup agave/honey, or Splenda (use Splenda if you are vegan, or honey/agave if you want a smoother bar)
- 4 tablespoons melted coconut oil
Mix melted coconut oil with your chosen sweetener, add cocoa powder and still well for several minutes until very thick. Pour into lined flat container, and store in freezer until solid. Cut into bars. When not serving, store in refrigerator as coconut oil will liquefy. Enjoy!
2. Edamame-Yummy Dip
Time: 5 minutes – again, seriously!
Servings: about 2
- ½ ripe avocado
- 2/3 cup shelled edamame
- 8 basil leaves (to taste)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- ½ lemon zest plus 1 tablespoon lemon juice (to taste)
- Pinch salt
- Tasty crusty bread or veggies as you like to dip!
Cook edamame per instructions or thaw pre-cooked edamame. Puree edamame with avocado, basil, lemon zest, lemon juice, salt, olive oil until smooth. Serve with your choice of dipping items! Refrigerate until eating. Enjoy!
3. Chickpea of the Sea Salad/Sandwich Spread
- 1 can of chickpeas*
- 1/4 cup vegan mayonnaise (I use Follow Your Heart brand)
- 3/4 cup celery, chopped
- 1/4 red onion, diced
- 1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard
- 1/4 cup of diced dill pickle (about 1 spear)
- good shake each of paprika and cumin
- squeeze of fresh lemon juice
- cracked black pepper & sea salt to taste
Rinse the chickpeas well and drain. Put the chickpeas in a food processor and pulse until they become crumbly. 2. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl, taste, and adjust to your liking. 3. Enjoy on toast, wraps, gluten-free crackers, veggies — you name it. I personally use more pickles and less paprika and cumin.
About the Author:
Stacy Bromley Cheetham, MPA grew up riding horses. She currently resides in Raleigh, NC with her boyfriend, her two rescue Pomeranians, a ornery calico cat, and is working with a promising young OTTB, Indelible (Hanna No Sir) who came from the Track to Tranquility race rehoming program. She is a fundraiser for a local nonprofit, is the Silent Auction Chair for Duke Jump for the Children, an AA rated horse show benefiting Duke Children’s Hospital, and is a member of the Board of Director’s for a local Raleigh charity called Activate Good. You can find her webspace here!