Vegetarian Firecracker Cauliflower

Our vegetarian spin on firecracker take-out features crunchy baked cauliflower in place of shrimp. You will love this Firecracker Cauliflower recipe! Homemade Take-Out I am a huge fan of recreating take-out type dishes at home.

Firecracker Cauliflower
Our vegetarian spin on firecracker take-out features crunchy baked cauliflower in place of shrimp. You will love this Firecracker Cauliflower recipe! Homemade Take-Out I am a huge fan of recreating take-out type dishes at home.

Mac and Kim-Cheese

What do you get when you mix tangy, spicy Korean kimchi into an ultra creamy, white cheddar mac and cheese? A downright delicious dinner, that’s what! Mac ‘n cheese aficionados: this one’s for you! Quite possibly the creamiest mac and cheese EVER (thanks to a super secret sciency ingredient), we’ve added spicy kimchi for a […]

What do you get when you mix tangy, spicy Korean kimchi into an ultra creamy, white cheddar mac and cheese? A downright delicious dinner, that’s what!

Mac ‘n cheese aficionados: this one’s for you! Quite possibly the creamiest mac and cheese EVER (thanks to a super secret sciency ingredient), we’ve added spicy kimchi for a unique take on a comfort food classic.

Kimchee Macaroni & Cheese in black ramekins with a jar of kimchi

Kimchi mac and cheese.

Mac and kim-cheese.

Get it?

I crack myself up sometimes.

But this pun-derful recipe is more than just a clever name. While it may have originated there, when we made our first test batch we were blown away by the combination of tangy, spicy kimchi and creamy white cheddar cheese. It’s simply unreal.

Closeup cocotte of Kimchee Macaroni & Cheese in black ramekins with a jar of kimchi

That said, this recipe did not come together easily.

I have a thing about texture, and especially when it comes to mac ‘n cheese, the texture is paramount to my ultimate enjoyment.

Most mac ‘n cheese recipes start out with a flour roux; this is how I’ve always made it (and indeed my past mac ‘n cheese recipes have done just that) but for whatever reason this time I just wasn’t satisfied.

Roux-based cheese sauces have a tendency to get somewhat pasty, a texture that really isn’t ideal when you’re craving an ultra creamy mac ‘n cheese.

I tried changing proportions of flour and cheese. I tried different kinds of cheeses. I compared baked vs stovetop versions. Either I’d have a thick cheese sauce that maybe stayed creamy for 5 minutes before going pasty, or a thin and watery one; there was no perfectly creamy middle ground.

Then I discovered a secret ingredient that is nothing short of magic.

(more…)

Vegan Poke Bowl

Here’s how to make a vegan poke bowl! You’ll be surprised at how much flavor comes from marinaded beet poke, colorful veggies and spicy mayo. Want to eat plant based but have your poke bowls too? These popular healthy bowl meals are all the rage lately. Poke is a Hawaiian specialty, typically made with raw ahi tuna that’s marinaded and then served with lots of veggies and tasty sauces. What if you don’t eat fish? We’ve got a whole food plant based (WFPB) version for you: vegan poke bowls! These tasty bowls are bursting with flavor, and they’ve got an unusual ingredient that amazingly gives the same texture and flavor as poke. Beets. Yep, you’re going to have to taste this to believe it…but it really works! Really, beet poke? Yes! Odd as it sounds, cooked beets stand in for the fish in this vegan poke bowl. Somehow the textures and the marinade really work! The beet poke comes out buttery and tender, savory with hints of soy, sesame and ginger. Just how to pull off this trick? Here are our secrets: Boiled beets have a similar texture and color to poke: smooth and buttery. Of course, beets have a […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Here’s how to make a vegan poke bowl! You’ll be surprised at how much flavor comes from marinaded beet poke, colorful veggies and spicy mayo.

Vegan poke bowl

Want to eat plant based but have your poke bowls too? These popular healthy bowl meals are all the rage lately. Poke is a Hawaiian specialty, typically made with raw ahi tuna that’s marinaded and then served with lots of veggies and tasty sauces. What if you don’t eat fish? We’ve got a whole food plant based (WFPB) version for you: vegan poke bowls! These tasty bowls are bursting with flavor, and they’ve got an unusual ingredient that amazingly gives the same texture and flavor as poke. Beets. Yep, you’re going to have to taste this to believe it…but it really works!

Vegan poke bowl

Really, beet poke?

Yes! Odd as it sounds, cooked beets stand in for the fish in this vegan poke bowl. Somehow the textures and the marinade really work! The beet poke comes out buttery and tender, savory with hints of soy, sesame and ginger. Just how to pull off this trick? Here are our secrets:

  • Boiled beets have a similar texture and color to poke: smooth and buttery. Of course, beets have a darker pink color than the bright pink ahi tuna: but they’re close! Cut them in cubes to simulate the real thing.
  • Stir in the poke sauce and the beets instantly pick up the flavors of soy, toasted sesame oil, garlic, ginger, and green onion. It’s pretty incredible. You’ve got to taste this to believe it!
  • Add filling plant-based protein to your bowl. Since beets don’t have protein, you’ll need to make sure other components of your bowl keep it filling. With edamame and brown rice, this bowl has a good amount of filling protein and fiber.
  • Add richness with spicy mayo. Beets are missing one more thing that ahi tuna has: fat! The spicy mayo drizzle brings back some of the richness.
Vegan Poke Bowl

Why make a vegan poke bowl?

This vegan poke bowl is a tasty, healthy plant based dinner recipe that makes eating your vegetables taste incredible! The beet poke tastes so buttery and savory from the soy and sesame oil, you’ll feel like you’re eating the real thing. (Though if you’re a long-time vegan, perhaps you haven’t tried it!)

Alex and I eat a Mediterranean-style diet that includes some seafood. So, we love our Classic Poke Bowls when we want to splurge on a really good piece of fish. But most of the time we eat a mostly plant based diet, so we make both of these poke bowl recipes. Each one is its own experience: uniquely delicious in its own way! It’s also nice to have both recipes if you’re cooking for a crowd with mixed diets. Make the same toppings and then serve either the ahi poke or the vegan beet poke!

Spicy mayo: what if I don’t like heat?

Good question! Spicy mayo is what takes this vegan poke bowl over the top. The richness and tang that it adds is essential to the bowl experience. But what if you can’t handle spice? Here’s what to do:

  • Make lime mayo. Mix the 1/2 cup vegan mayo with 1 tablespoon lime juice and 1 teaspoon soy sauce, to get all the tang but none of the heat!

Where did the poke bowl originate?

Poke is a Hawaiian dish! The word is Hawaiian for “to slice” or “cut crosswise into pieces.” It refers to the raw fish that’s cut into cubes. Poke is a Hawaiian-American food, but much of its flavor is influenced by Japanese cuisine: soy sauce, green onions, and sesame oil. Serve poke with rice, veggies, and other sauces and it becomes a poke bowl.

Interestingly, poke bowls started to become very popular in North America around 2012. As you might imagine, this spawned a lot of creativity around exactly what goes into a poke bowl! This vegan poke bowl is not traditional because it’s a plant based knock off, of course. For our classic poke bowl, go to Poke Bowl Recipe.

Marinaded beet poke

Vegan poke bowl topping ideas!

There are so many ways to make a great vegan poke bowl! You can easily customize it around your own preferences. Since the poke here is made of beets, you’ll want to make sure you have lots of plant-based protein and fiber in this bowl to keep you full. In this bowl, we did add some light seasonings to each veggie to bring out the flavor. Here’s what you’ll find in this poke bowl, and then some other ideas:

Toppings in this poke bowl

  • Short grain rice Use white or brown! Traditionally it’s white sushi rice, we tend toward brown since it has more fiber and nutrients.
  • Edamame frozen and thawed, well salted
  • Radishes if you can find watermelon radishes, they’ve got beautiful color!
  • Avocado also adds richness and is filling
  • Carrots are beautiful for color
  • Green onion adds a crunch
  • Spicy mayo adds richness: it’s a must!
  • Sesame seeds

Other vegan poke bowl topping ideas

  • Marinaded tofu: To add even more protein, add this tasty marinaded tofu.
  • Cucumber seaweed salad: Take 1 large English cucumber and julienne it into long thin strips (3 cups; we used a handheld julienne peeler). Mix with 1 1/2 tablespoons rice vinegar, 1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce, and 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil.
  • Sliced cucumber: Even easier, just thinly slice it!
  • Red cabbage: Shred it and add a little toasted sesame oil
  • Vegan ponzu sauce like this one
Vegan Poke Bowl

This recipe is…

Vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free, and gluten-free.

Print
Vegan poke bowl

Vegan Poke Bowl


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (5 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 4

Description

Here’s how to make a vegan poke bowl! You’ll be surprised at how much flavor comes from marinaded beet poke, colorful veggies and spicy mayo.


Ingredients

For the beet poke

  • 6 medium beets (or pre-cooked beets, as a time saver*)
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 small garlic clove, grated
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger, grated
  • 1 teaspoon minced green onion
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt

For the poke bowl

  • 1 cup short grain white rice or brown rice
  • 2 cups shelled edamame (thawed)
  • 3 green onions
  • 8 radishes
  • 1 avocado
  • 2 medium carrots
  • Spicy Mayo (1/2 cup mayo + 1 1/2 tablespoons Sriracha), for drizzling
  • For the garnish: sesame seeds, microgreens or sprouts (optional)

Instructions

  1. Cook the beets*: Use How to Boil Beets (takes about 40 minutes total) or Instant Pot Beets (takes 25 minutes). Peel the beets according to the recipe, then slice them into 1/2-inch cubes.
  2. Make the rice: Make the rice on the stovetop or in an Instant Pot. When it’s done, give it a few shakes of rice vinegar and stir in salt to taste. (Or, make the rice in advance and reheat it on the stovetop with a splash of water.)
  3. Season the beets: When they’re cooked, place the beets in a bowl and stir together the soy sauce, toasted sesame oil, grated garlic, ginger, minced green onion, and kosher salt.
  4. Prepare the veggies: Thinly slice the green onions and radishes. Slice the avocado. Julienne the carrots (or peel strips with a veggie peeler). Sprinkle all the veggies with salt.
  5. Serve: Place the veggies and rice in a bowl. Top with the beet poke and garnish the poke with sesame seeds. Drizzle with Spicy Mayo and serve.

Notes

*Many grocery stores now carry pre-cooked beets that are packaged and ready to eat. Buy these for a time saver in this recipe!

  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Vegan

Keywords: Vegan Poke Bowl

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Creamy Buffalo Cauliflower Soup.

You GUYS. I made us buffalo cauliflower soup to warm our soul. Yesssss I know. I’m back with more cauliflower and more buffalo-wing inspired cauliflower. Forgive me?  Remember years ago when I first made this cauliflower soup? It was SO incredible and one of my first forays into loving cauliflower, especially in a way other […]

The post Creamy Buffalo Cauliflower Soup. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

You GUYS. I made us buffalo cauliflower soup to warm our soul.

This buffalo cauliflower soup is creamy and decadent and silky smooth! Made with cheddar, wing sauce, blue cheese and all the fixins!

Yesssss I know.

I’m back with more cauliflower and more buffalo-wing inspired cauliflower. Forgive me? 

This buffalo cauliflower soup is creamy and decadent and silky smooth! Made with cheddar, wing sauce, blue cheese and all the fixins!

Remember years ago when I first made this cauliflower soup? It was SO incredible and one of my first forays into loving cauliflower, especially in a way other than roasted. 

That cauliflower soup has always reminded me of potato soup because it is so creamy and decadent – without cheese! That’s always a big one for me.

No cheese?! Should I even taste it?

Well I can’t say that this doesn’t have cheese. It does have a litttttle bit of cheese, but only because I whole-heartedly believe that a buffalo-wing inspired dish should have some cheddar. Sure, I know that actual wings don’t have cheese and cheddar, but when it comes to buffalo chicken pizza or anything else that I try to “buffalo,” a bit of cheddar is a must.

Unless we’re talking about this cauliflower. I use smoked blue cheese there, soooo… just don’t leave out the cheese. Moral of the story.

This buffalo cauliflower soup is creamy and decadent and silky smooth! Made with cheddar, wing sauce, blue cheese and all the fixins!

Now here’s the other thing. I have this REALLY OLD recipe on the site for buffalo chicken soup. Many of you are die hard fans over the buffalo chicken soup – like you still tell me how much you love that recipe. Not only is it a good recipe, but it’s pretty darn quick too. 30 minutes or less. 

The photos are terrible, but hey, you win some, you lose some. Actually, back in 2010 they were probably omgthebest photos I had ever taken! 

p.s. the little baguettes on top of that soup take it over the top. It’s embarrassingly easy and simple but if you love buffalo chicken stuff and soup, you’ll be into it.

This buffalo cauliflower soup is creamy and decadent and silky smooth! Made with cheddar, wing sauce, blue cheese and all the fixins!

ANYHOOOO.

That is all where the inspiration for this recipe came from. Actually, I thought of a soup with whole roasted cauliflower florets in it, sort of like how the chicken pieces are in my original soup. Then I determined that would be disgusting and remembered that I had the creamiest, dreamiest cauliflower soup recipe that I love so much.

And that doing some sort of combination of the two would be awesome.

I was right! This is silky and smooth and a little spicy and tangy. You melt a bit of cheese into the soup too. But obviously, the real winner here is the toppings – tons of chives and scallions and blue cheese, all my must-haves for anything buffalo-wing inspired.

This buffalo cauliflower soup is creamy and decadent and silky smooth! Made with cheddar, wing sauce, blue cheese and all the fixins!

And if I’m being honest, I really wanted something crunchy on top. I think you could do a baguette slice or big, crunchy crouton, but I liked the vibe of no bread here, so I skipped it. What you can (and should?) probably do is garnish it with diced celery. But since I believe celery is born from the depths of hell, I skipped that part. 

A bowl of this is SO good. Super comforting and warming, silky and smooth. It’s amazing in shooter form too. And slightly orange, obviously, so it’s the perfect October soup.

This buffalo cauliflower soup is creamy and decadent and silky smooth! Made with cheddar, wing sauce, blue cheese and all the fixins!

Buffalo Cauliflower Soup

Buffalo Cauliflower Soup

This buffalo cauliflower soup is creamy and decadent and silky smooth! Made with cheddar, wing sauce, blue cheese and all the fixins!

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 sweet onion, (finely diced)
  • 2 garlic cloves, (minced)
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 large head of cauliflower, (chopped into florets)
  • 3 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup half and half or whole milk
  • ⅓ cup buffalo wing sauce ((or more to taste!), plus more for drizzling)
  • ⅔ cup freshly grated sharp white cheddar cheese

for garnish

  • fresh cilantro
  • sliced scallions
  • chopped chives
  • crumbled blue cheese
  1. Heat a large pot over medium heat. Add the olive oil and 1 tablespoon butter, then add onions with the salt and pepper. Stir in the garlic. Cook, stirring often, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add in the chopped cauliflower and vegetable stock, then cover and cook for 20 to 25 minutes until softened. A few times during cooking, use your spoon to press down and break apart or mash the cauliflower.
  2. Transfer all the cauliflower and liquid to a blender and (carefully!) puree until smooth. Make sure you hold a towel over top of the blender while pureeing. Pour the cauliflower mixture back into the post and heat over low heat.
  3. Stir in the milk and remaining butter. Stir in the buffalo wing sauce. Keep it over the heat, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes or so until the soup is all warm again. Stir in the cheddar until it melts. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper or more wing sauce if you’d like.
  4. Serve the soup immediately and top with cilantro, chives, green onions and blue cheese. Extra wing sauce drizzle if you’d like!

This buffalo cauliflower soup is creamy and decadent and silky smooth! Made with cheddar, wing sauce, blue cheese and all the fixins!

Seriously melts in your mouth!

The post Creamy Buffalo Cauliflower Soup. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

Smoky Summer Chicken Salad.

No more sad summer chicken salad lunches!  This smoky chicken salad is going to make you want to have chicken salad every.darn.day. Loaded with flavor. Super easy. And totally versatile! It may come as a surprise, but I have to freaking LOVE a chicken salad recipe in order to share it. I still have nightmares […]

The post Smoky Summer Chicken Salad. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

No more sad summer chicken salad lunches! 

This smoky summer chicken salad is incredible! So much flavor from grilled chicken, sweet cherry tomatoes, corn, cheddar cheese and a secret ingredient!

This smoky chicken salad is going to make you want to have chicken salad every.darn.day.

Loaded with flavor. Super easy. And totally versatile!

It may come as a surprise, but I have to freaking LOVE a chicken salad recipe in order to share it. I still have nightmares from my childhood of chicken (or tuna… or egg…) salad swimming in mayo, with barely any flavor, and worst of all – loaded with celery.

I just can’t. 

chicken salad prep

I never HATED any of the salads like some people do, but the experience from a deli or cafeteria left a lot to be desired. So when I started making my own versions, I was blown away at how much I loved them. 

And yes, in case you think you’re going crazy: I’ve made a chicken salad similar to this before. My sweet corn and bacon chicken salad is creamier than this but just as good. But the winner by far is my lemon almond roasted chicken salad. You guys love this!

This smoky summer chicken salad is incredible! So much flavor from grilled chicken, sweet cherry tomatoes, corn, cheddar cheese and a secret ingredient!

First off, this isn’t even my own recipe.

This recipe comes from Lacy (again!) and is a chicken salad she has been loving for years. She has wanted to recreate it forever, so we got down to business.

It’s SO GOOD.

The smokiness? We grill the chicken which imparts a smoky flavor (you could totally grab a rotisserie chicken in a pinch) but we also dropped some liquid smoke in the mix! Just a tiny tiny drop. Makes it tastes SO good. 

We added both corn cut from the cob (or course because #summer) and tomatoes. They are just so sweet right now, so combined with the smoky flavor? We knew it would be everything.

Scallions and cheddar cheese also found their way into the bowl.

This smoky summer chicken salad is incredible! So much flavor from grilled chicken, sweet cherry tomatoes, corn, cheddar cheese and a secret ingredient!

The dressing is a yogurt and mayo hybrid with some seasonings and again, the liquid smoke. It’s amazing! 

This salad is SO delish served in lettuce cup (like the very crunchy iceberg ones). But it also works on top of salads and inside of sandwiches. I grabbed the multigrain croissants from my local grocery store and the combo was just dreamy. They are fabulous.

This smoky summer chicken salad is incredible! So much flavor from grilled chicken, sweet cherry tomatoes, corn, cheddar cheese and a secret ingredient!
It’s also pretty amazing when you stand over the bowl with a fork and eat it like that. Or scoop it up with chips. I am very very into this.

This smoky summer chicken salad is incredible! So much flavor from grilled chicken, sweet cherry tomatoes, corn, cheddar cheese and a secret ingredient!

Smoky Summer Chicken Salad

Smoky Summer Chicken Salad

This smoky summer chicken salad is incredible! So much flavor from grilled chicken, sweet cherry tomatoes, corn, cheddar cheese and a secret ingredient!

  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, (halved or chopped)
  • 1 cup sweet corn kernels ((raw, grilled, cooked, frozen, etc!))
  • ⅓ cup sliced scallions
  • ¼ cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
  • ¼ cup plain greek yogurt
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 ½ tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon liquid smoke
  • Pinch of salt
  • Pinch of freshly ground black pepper
  1. Preheat your grill to the highest setting.
  2. Season the chicken thighs with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Brush them with olive oil. PLace the chicken on the grill and cook for 6 minutes per side. When finished, let the chicken rest for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, cube or shred the chicken.
  3. Place the chicken, tomatoes, corn, scallions and cheese in a large bowl. Toss it together.
  4. In a small bowl, whisk together the yogurt, mayo, lemon juice, liquid smoke, salt and pepper.
  5. Pour the dressing over the chicken mixture and toss well. Combine and stir until every bit is covered. Serve the chicken on croissants or toast with lettuce or microgreens.
  6. This stays great in the fridge for about 3 days. It tastes even better!

This smoky summer chicken salad is incredible! So much flavor from grilled chicken, sweet cherry tomatoes, corn, cheddar cheese and a secret ingredient!

Crunch! Flavor! I can’t get enough.

The post Smoky Summer Chicken Salad. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.