Nut & Seed Butters

Bring Joy Guest Post! Vegan Egg Nog Milk Shake. Bring Joy Totes. Plus a Bonus Field Roast Celebration Roast. Vedged Out 12 Days of Christmas.


So, I can’t even quite remember how Janae and I connected, but it’s been a fast and fun friendship even though I live in Utah and She lives in Texas. See, we’re both Mormon and Vegan (two things that don’t often go hand in hand). Janae found veganism over 7 years ago, while I went vegan just 2 years ago. Even though veganism isn’t common amongst members of our faith, we both feel it aligns closely with our church’s Word of Wisdom, which is kind of like a Mormon Law for Health.

Interestingly enough, we also both started out our vegan journey with more heavily restrictive vegan diets that eschewed added fats, sugars and sodium. Now we’re both into healthy moderation with all those things. Girls’ gotta live! Her blog, Bring Joy is much fancier and organized than mine! She showcases lifestyle and family posts as well as her recipes (and e-books). Everything she posts is beautifully photographed and mind-blowingly delicious.

Janae WiseLet’s welcome Janae Wise, the darling heavily pregnant, budget concious, gluten-free, mom and vegan Mormon behind the blog, Bring Joy.

The other day I went to Whole Foods. I don’t usually shop there. For one it’s not in my neck of the woods & I’m not into guzzling gas if I don’t need to.

But more importantly, my heart starts racing & I approach a near hyperventilative state whenever I look at the prices.

Don’t get me wrong–the gluten-free vegan brownies, the chickpea miso, & the organic cultured coconut yogurt certainly does cause m e to think I cannot live without these things–but I simply can’t afford to do too much shopping in that beautiful, beautiful place.

But on this recent trip (I was just looking for some light tofu, which wouldn’t ya know, they don’t carry), I came across a boxes of this:


And they were on sale.
And there was a coupon.
So, I scored several boxes for just $1 each–yipee! I love a good deal, don’t you?

It’s nice to drink straight up, but I had other things in mind.

You see, I have four growing, always hungry, young kids. And when the older ones walk home from school each afternoon they’re especially ravenous. So, it’s my job to figure out how I can easily feed them a nutrient dense, calorie-packed snack.

I made this shake for them the other day–packed with lots of good stuff, & calorie dense (though each serving is perfect for an adult watching their calories).

The addition of nut butter & pumpkin seeds add some important nutrients for my kids, including fat, protein, zinc & vitamin E.


1 c. rice nog (or other non-dairy nog)
2 ripe bananas
2-3 c. ice
2 TBS. nut butter
1/4 c. unsalted raw pumpkin seeds
dash of cinnamon, pinch of nutmeg
1-2 packets stevia, if desired (though I think it’s plenty sweet without!)

Put ingredients in blender by order listed & blend until smooth. This is isn’t as thick & creamy as my candy cane or pumpkin pie milkshakes (which are more like soft ice cream), but that’s okay–drink with a straw & enjoy!

nutrition info: makes 4 servings; per serving–156 calories, 5 g fat, 25 g carbs, 3 g fiber, 14 g sugar, 3.5 g protein; WWP: 4 points 


bring joy totes are on sale through 12/20 for only $7.50 + free shipping (enter hohoho at checkout):

Janae is offering one tote bag for two lucky blog readers! Enter the giveaway! And in the meantime, hop on over to Bring Joy to peruse it’s awesomeness.

For a chance to win this amazing Giveaway, Click on the link below to enter the Giveaway! This contest is open to entrants in the USA only! You must also follow this blog by email or RSS feed to qualify. You have until Sunday December 22nd!  I will notify the winner by email on Monday the 23rd December. GO!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Bonus Giveaway: Last but not least, Field Roast, the awesome company that makes the best “vegan grain meat” EVAH! mailed me some coupons earlier in the year, so I’m giving away one coupon for a Field Roast Celebration Roast to the first reader to go to my Vedged Out Facebook Page and message me there about how badly they want this Celebration Roast for Christmas! I’ll mail the coupon out to the winner today so that you have time to pick it up before Christmas!!!

field roast

Day 1: Free Vegan Lifestyle MagazineDay 2: Free Case of Butler Soy CurlsDay 3: Alternative Outfitters Vegan Boutique $25 Gift Card and Free Messenger BagDay 4: Sunwarrior Raw Vegan Protein Powder or Product of Choice GiveawayDay 5: Tropical Traditions 1 Gallon Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil Giveaway. Day 6: Sweet Debbie’s Organic Treats, Allergy Free & Vegan Recipes. Cookbook Giveaway. Day 7: Extraordinary Vegan Cookbook Giveaway. Day 8: Emaline Delapaix, Music Download Giveaway. Day 9: Jazzy Vegetarian Classics Cookbook Giveaway.


Vedged Out’s Vegan Thanksgiving Menu

Vedged Out Thanksgiving


Kick Ace Extra Sharp Raw Vegan Cheddar Cheese Ball, served with raw flax crackers and assorted vegetables.



Vedged Out’s Macadamia Nut Brie En Croute


Alexander’s Rainbow Salad with Kale and Orange Red Pepper Dressing from In Vegetables We Trust

rainbow-kale-salad-vegan-orange-red-pepper-dressing (1)photo used with permission 


Vegan Monologue’s Buttery Pan Rolls

You can also use whole grain white whole wheat flour in this recipe!

Amanda’s Whole Grain Cranberry Walnut Sourdough Bread

(this is what we slathered the Brie En Croute all over! They were made for each other!)

sourdough bread


Lemon Seltzer Water

Cranberry Fizzy: equal parts cranberry juice and ginger ale

 Mains and Sides

In Pursuit of More’s Cashew Loaf (just make it, and you’ll want it as the centerpiece at every holiday!


Dad’s Wild Rice, Cranberry and Pine Nut Stuffing

Dad’s Pine Nut and Glazed Onion Mashed Potatoes


Vedged Out’s Sauteed Green Beans, Red Onions and Radishes

  • 2 lbs fresh green beans, washed and trimmed
  • 2 T. extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 red onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 bunches radishes, washed, greens removed and quartered
  • ½ C. Toasted Slivered Almonds
  • salt and pepper to taste

In a large saute pan heat the olive oil until glistening over medium heat. Add green beans, radishes and red onions. Saute until vegetables are crisp tender, about 5-10 minutes. Season with salt and peper and sprinkle with the slivered almonds.

Maple Cranberry Sauce

Maple Cranberry Sauce

Roasted Sweet Potatoes, lightly glazed with pure maple syrup and unrefined coconut oil


An Unrefined Vegan’s Apple Pie

applepie3photos used with permission

Razzleberry Pie 

Gabby’s No Bake Pumpkin Mousse Cake

An Unrefined Vegan’s Hazelnut Pumpkin Cheesecake w/ Chocolate-Hazelnut Topping

Hazelnut cheesecake

Vegan Coconut Whipped Cream

Healthy Happy Life’s 4 Ingredient Vegan Pumpkin Pie

and Vegan Ice Cream

Oil-Free Chocolate Chip Banana Squares. Guest Post from Annie at An Unrefined Vegan + Last Chance for VVP!


Here’s a final, last minute shameless plug and call for sign ups for the Virtual Vegan Potluck. The potluck is nearly full, so if you haven’t signed up all ready, get in there. Oh, and the founder of the VVP (and my blogger BFF), Annie from An Unrefined Vegan is sharing a guest post with us today. Just looking at this recipe makes me think about all the other luscious desserts in store come potluck time!

potluck spoons

Let’s give a hearty welcome to Annie and her luscious Oil-Free Chocolate Chip Banana Squares! I think these are healthy enough to qualify as breakfast food!

Banana Cake Slice

Over the years I’ve made a lot of banana bread from many different recipes. A lot. This one is the simplest I’ve ever made and also the most delicious. While away from home recently, I needed a banana recipe fast so I did a Google search and used the very first listing – from Simply Recipes. I veganized it; traded out the oil for almond butter, used whole wheat pastry flour, added chocolate chips, and then baked it in a square pan rather than in a loaf. This comes together ridiculously fast and is craved by vegans and non-vegans alike (mom and dad, I’m looking at you).

Thank you, Somer, for inviting me to share this recipe with your readers and for letting them know about the Virtual Vegan Potluck! I hope that the food bloggers out there will consider signing up for the November 16 event. It’s always a lot of fun and it’s a great way to find new blogs to love and to add delicious, plant-based food to your recipe stockpile.

Quick Chocolate Chip Banana (Bread) Squares
Makes 1 9″ x 9″ pan

3 large, very ripe bananas, mashed
1 tbsp. flaxseed meal + 3 tbsp. water (whisk together then let sit for a few minutes)
1/3 cup natural almond butter
1/2 cup coconut palm sugar
1 full stopper of liquid stevia (I used NuNaturals Alcohol-free Stevia Pure Liquid)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
pinch salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup pecans or walnuts, chopped

Preheat the oven to 350F and lightly spray a 9″ x 9″ baking pan with oil.

In a large bowl, combine the bananas, flaxseed meal, almond butter, sugar, and stevia. Stir well.

Add the remaining ingredients and mix until the dry ingredients are fully incorporated. Pour mixture into prepared pan and bake for 35-40 minutes or until golden brown and firm on top. Let cool before slicing.

Banana Cake with Slice

Banana Cake on Plates


Antioxidant Purplicious Chia Jam with Super Powered Nut Butter


So, several months back, I was talking to Annie over at An Unrefined Vegan. We both had sworn we’d never do MOFO again after last year. Well, somehow during that conversation I suckered her in, I was going to go along for the ride as well, but circumstances for me didn’t allow it, so this is a bit of an ode to Annie’s PB&J MOFO theme. Wishing I was doing MOFO too, but there’s always next year!


Antioxidant Purplicious Chia Jam

  • 3 C. Pitted Cherries
  • 2 C. Raspberries
  • 1 C. Blueberries
  • 1 C. Strawberries
  • 1/2 C. Pomegranate Arils
  • 1/2 C. Pure Maple Syrup
  • 5 T. Chia Seeds
  • Dash Cinnamon

Method: Combine fruits, pure maple syrup and cinnamon in a large saucepan over medium heat. Cook until it reaches a low boil. Mash a bit with a potato masher, add chia seeds and reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring often until nicely thickened. Remove from heat and ladle into jars. Share. Keep refrigerated, will stay fresh for several weeks.

tower o jam

nut butter

Super-Powered Nut Butter

  • 2 C. Raw Almonds
  • 2 C. Raw Cashews
  • 1 C. Raw Pecans
  • 1/2 C. Sunflower Seeds
  • 2 T. Hemp Seeds
  • 2 T. Sesame Seeds (I used black and regular)
  • 2 T. Flax Seeds
  • 2 T. Chia Seeds
  • 1/2 C. Unsweetened Dried Shaved Coconut
  • 1/4 C. Pure Maple Syrup
  • 2 t. Kosher Salt

You may also need to halve this recipe if you have large food processor envy. 

Method: Preheat oven to 350 degrees, roast nuts all nuts and seeds on a large baking sheet (except coconut) for 5-7 minutes, stirring once. Add shaved coconut to the nuts and seeds and roast for a few minutes more until the coconut turns golden. Remove from oven. Let cool briefly. Add to food processor and let ‘er rip. You may have to scrape down the sides a couple of times but in 5 minutes or so it should start to come together and stop looking like very finely ground nut flour. When that happens, add the maple syrup and the salt. If you notice steamy fragrant luciousness emitting from your food processor, you’re not the only one, and no the motor isn’t malfunctioning, the nut butter is heating up under blissful pressure. Process for a couple more minutes until delicious. Eat while gooey and warm and turn into a nut butter superhero. Add pretzel rolls, I know you haven’t forgotten these! 🙂

bread basket

 Instant Picnic! Make sure to visit Annie for 20+ posts of PB&J insanity!


Celebrating 100 Posts!

It’s a good day all around, this post marks my 100th post since I started this blog in September 2012. I’m feeling all kinds of love and support! Thanks to all of you. Today I got twitter follows from Forks Over Knives, Dr. McDougall and a Hospital!?! I also got featured on the brand new site, Choose Veg. Feeling happy and blessed. Here’s a look back at 99 posts, in no particular order.

Vegan Almond and Pistachio Ice Cream

top viewVegan Almond and Pistachio Ice Cream

On St. Patrick’s Day, our family always has a lot of fun. The naughty leprechaun comes to visit, sometimes he leaves us treats and gold coins, other times he just makes messes all around the house. Someone is always being pinched. We usually eat entirely green in our family for the whole day.

Breakfast might be whole-grain-pioneer-blender-pancakes colored green by adding spinach to the batter with honeydew and green grapes on the side. For lunch a green salad with a green goddess avocado and chive dressing is always in order. For an afternoon snack, I bust out the greenest smoothie you’ve ever seen. Dinner is a whole green affair: an appetizer of celery, cucumber, broccoli and green olives in edamame and avocado hummus. Main course might consist of spinach fettucine with green cashew alfredo (spinach is the star again!) topped with basil chiffonade. This year, we’ll definitely be having THIS very green ice cream for dessert.

close up

Vegan Almond and Pistachio Ice Cream

  • 1 can full fat coconut milk 
  • 1 C. soymilk
  • 1/4 C. raw almond butter
  • 2 C. packed organic baby spinach
  • 2/3 C. raw agave OR pure maple syrup
  • 1/3 C. shelled pistachios, roughly chopped
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract

Method: In your blender, blend everything except for the pistachios until fully combined, about one to two minutes. There should be no visible spinach pieces! Pour into prepared ice cream maker and let churn for twenty five to thirty minutes, add pistachios during the last few minutes of churning. You can eat it straight away like soft serve, but for the best texture and flavor, pour ice cream into an airtight container and freeze for two hours or overnight before serving. If you don’t have an ice cream maker, you can try this method.


Hesitant to try green ice cream using spinach? Prior to going vegan, Pistachio Almond Ice Cream was one of my very favorites. This is a reverse of that flavor, made vegan and health-ified. I don’t use artificial coloring in my home, so spinach makes the ice cream green, while adding iron and calcium. If you don’t tell anyone, they’d never guess it’s in there! This ice cream tastes every bit as rich, creamy and delicious as dairy ice cream, but with much less guilt!

side view

What are your St. Patrick’s Day Traditions?

Pepita Maple Butter Salad Dressing with Carrot Ribbon Salad

Carrot Ribbon SaladCarrot Ribbon Salad with Pepita Maple Butter Salad Dressing

My mom brought me nearly a gallon of roasted salted pepitas (pumpkin seeds) last time she came to visit. I’ve been using them in everything, but this post is all about the best salad dressing EVER. You’ll pretty much want to drink it from the jar once you’ve made it. You can serve it over any type of salad. Last night we had it over baby greens, artichoke hearts and white beans. However the carrot ribbons are cute and whimsical, plus this dish reminds me of an unusual (but tasty) salad my mom used to make when I was little: shredded carrot, mayo, sugar, raisins, salt and pepper. I like to think of this as my grown up version. Thanks mom for all the lovely pepitas!

Pepita ButterPepita Butter

Salad Dressing

Pepita Maple Butter Salad Dressing

  • 1/4 C. pepita butter (I made the pepita butter in my blendtec: 3 C. roasted salted pepitas, processed and scraped down, over and over until smooth, this took just a couple minutes) OR you could use 1/2 C. pepitas
  • 1/4 C. pure maple syrup (if desired, halve this amount for a more savory dressing)
  • 2 T. bragg’s liquid aminos
  • 3 T. plant milk of choice, I used soy
  • 2 T. white wine vinegar
  • 1 T. nutritional yeast (optional)
  • 1 clove minced garlic

Method: In a power blender, blend all ingredients until completely smooth. Dressing will be a bit thin, but thickens nicely in the fridge. If you don’t have a power blender, or a food processor to make the pepita butter, soak the pepitas for a few hours before blending the dressing.

Carrot Ribbons

For the Carrot Ribbon Salad:

  • 2-3 Carrots per person, shaved into ribbons with a vegetable peeler
  • Roasted and Salted Pepitas for sprinkling over salad
  • Cranberries or Raisins for sprinkling over salad
  • A few tablespoons of the above dressing, per person

Carrot Ribbon Salad 2

This recipe is featured on the Virtual Vegan Linky Potluck


Toasted Sesame Tahini Pictorial

Toasted Sesame TahiniWay better than the store bought stuff

Anyone else tired of paying nearly $10 a jar for Tahini? I stopped buying tahini at the store months ago. If you buy sesame seeds in bulk at your natural foods store, you can make your own way more awesome organic version for around $2 bucks.

Measure OutMeasure out 3 cups organic sesame seeds into a skillet

ToastToast on stove-top over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes, stirring constantly, until seeds are golden brown.

In Food ProcessorDump into food processor, add a teaspoon of sea salt if desired.

Halfway ThroughProcess for 7-10 minutes, scraping down sides every couple minutes. It will look dry and crumbly, but don’t worry it’ll come together.

FinishedTahini is ready when completely smooth.

DSC_0168Store in your old Tahini Jar, if it’s a 16 oz jar, it’ll fit perfectly. For ultimate freshness, keep in the fridge.