Archive for the ‘recipes’ Category

Part of my recovery and also a 2016 goal, is to get healthy head to toe, inside and out. And although I’ve made the fun chocolaty recipes from Deliciously Ella and boy were they delicious, it was time to step out of the cacao box and make some fun and healthy veggie fun stuff! Ella’s book is chock full of healthy plant-based meals so if you have not purchased her book, you definitely should 🙂

This recipe is so good, that I seriously can’t believe how healthy it is! And it has cilantro which I absolutely lurrrrrrve… Nom, nom. Go ahead and make this recipe and tell me you don’t seriously fall in love with it 🙂


Quinoa Tabbouleh


  • 2 ¹⁄³ cups quinoa
  • 7 ounces fresh cilantro
  • 8 tomatoes
  • ¾ cup pine nuts (3½ ounces) **
  • 2 tablespoons tahini
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • juice of 2 lemons
  • salt and pepper


  • Place the quinoa in a sieve and rinse with cold water until the water that comes through is totally clear.
  • Place the quinoa in a saucepan with 4 cups boiling water. Let the quinoa boil for a minute or so; then let it simmer for another 10-15 minutes covered, until all the water has been absorbed and the quinoa is fluffy.
  • While the quinoa cooks, finely chop the cilantro. Then chop the tomatoes into small salsa-like squares.
  • Toast the pine nuts in a dry frying pan; this should take just a couple of minutes.
  • Once the quinoa has finished cooking, allow it to cool.
  • Mix in the cilantro, chopped tomato, tahini, olive oil, lemon juice and toasted pine nuts before sprinkling it all with salt and pepper.

The dish is meant to be served cold and let me tell you, this dish tasted even better the next day!

**Regarding the pine nuts… I made this recipe exactly as Ella listed it in her book with the roasted pine nuts, but I have to tell you, I prefer the dish without them. Roasted pine nuts have a strong flavor for me, so if you don’t think you are on the pine nut bandwagon either, don’t worry, the dish tastes just fine without them 🙂

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Healthy brownies? Is that like unicorns, they don’t exist? Well I am here to tell you that these brownies are totally healthy, and they are real! (The jury is still out on that whole unicorn thing, though) 😉

For real though, these brownies are yummy and chocolaty. These brownies are nothing like the sugary confections in the store that are preservative-laden; these brownies are delicious, and I swear, you don’t even notice the sweet potato at all! These brownies are also good if you are on the road to upping your health game, but are still desiring a sweet treat 🙂


And yes, it is another recipe from Deliciously Ella. What can I say? That girl has mad cooking skills 😉

Sweet Potato Brownies


  • 2 medium-large sweet potatoes (about 10 ounces each)
  • 14 Medjool dates, pitted
  • ¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons ground almonds (about 3 ounces)
  • 4 tablespoons raw cacao powder**
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup
  • pinch of salt


  • Preheat the oven to 350°F
  • Peel the sweet potatoes. Cut them into chunks and place into a steamer for about 20 minutes, until they become really soft.
  • Once they are perfectly soft and beginning to fall apart, remove them and add them to a food processor with the dates. Blend until a smooth, creamy mix forms.
  • Put the remaining ingredients into a bowl before mixing in the sweet potato and date combination. Stir well.
  • Place the mix into a parchment-paper lined baking dish and cook for 20-30 minutes, until you can pierce the brownie cake with a fork and pull it out dry. Remove the dish from the oven and allow it to cool for about 10 minutes. This is really important, as the brownies need this time to stick together.

**Ella states in her recipe that if you do not have any raw cacao powder, that it is totally okay to use conventional cocoa powder; you will just need to double the quantity.

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I know for many people, they purchase someone’s cookbook with the best intentions. “I’m totally going to make every single recipe in this book!”, they say. And then the book collects dust…

But trust me when I say that if you make the recipes from Deliciously Ella by Ella Woodward, you will not only make these recipes, you will be richly rewarded with the deliciousness of her recipes!

One her most beloved recipes is her Almond and Chia Energy Bites, and oh my goodness, are these puppies good! Seriously amazing and my husband and I ate quite a few of them before I forced the lid of the container on the rest of them, and put them away 😉

If you are looking for something super healthy to have as a snack, look no further than this recipe!


Almond and Chia Energy Bites


  • 1 ¹⁄³ cup of almonds (about 7 ounces)**
  • 14 ounces Medjool dates (about 20 dates)
  • 4 tablespoons raw cacao powder
  • 2 tablespoons almond butter
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds


  • Start by putting the almonds in a food processor and pulse for about 30 seconds, until they are nicely crushed.
  • Then pit the dates and add them, plus the other ingredients and 2 tablespoons water, to the processor and blend again until everything has mixed together perfectly and it is all nice and sticky.
  • Roll the mix into balls.
  • Place the balls in the freezer for an hour to set, then store in an airtight container in the fridge.

Makes about 20 balls.

** Ella states in her book that if you don’t like almonds, you can try swapping them with a different nut. But I definitely used almonds in this recipe and it was yummy 🙂

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Don’t let the title scare you seriously… Even if you could give a fig about gluten and whether you are eating it or not, you have got to try these cookies! Telling the truth here people, I made these cookies yesterday and my family has already barreled through half of them. And best of all, these oatmeal cookies have chocolate chips in them!!! YOU CANT GO WRONG WITH CHOCOLATE!!! ♥♥♥♥

Make these cookies and tell me you don’t ingest 10 of ’em by dinnertime 😉 You can also make these for Thanksgiving and Christmas, but I suggest making a batch now to you know, um, taste-test them, and then um, make them again for an upcoming holiday 🙂


Gluten-Free Oatmeal Cookies


  • ¼ cup butter
  • 1 ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 3 cups rolled oats (I used Trader Joe’s gluten-free oats)
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • 6 oz. chocolate chips
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup walnuts
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup peanut butter


  • Preheat oven to 350°
  • In a large bowl, combine sugar, brown sugar, and butter and beat until creamy. Add eggs, vanilla, and baking soda and mix well. Add peanut butter and mix well. Stir in oats, chocolate chips, and nuts. Place a teaspoon* full of dough about 2 inches apart on a lightly greased cookie sheet.
  • Bake 10-12 minutes until lightly browned around the edges.

*My teaspoon full was closer to a tablespoon full. Just thought I’d give full disclosure. They still baked normally 🙂

**Recipe adapted from Trader Joe’s own recipe

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I know, I know…probably at this point you are probably on pumpkin overload. If you have a social media account, that’s probably all it is inundated with! 🙂

But I came across this recipe that is really good, and the best part of it is, is that it is suggested that you eat it with apple and/or pear slices! I mean a dip where it’s recommended that you eat fruit with it? Heck yeah, I am down for that! Also, if you are not totally into the taste of pumpkin, that’s okay because it is not super strong in this recipe. But this dip is good and may become a fall staple in the Random Path household 😉



Spiced Pumpkin Dip



  • 1 cup canned pumpkin puree
  • 1 8-oz package of cream cheese softened
  • 3 Tablespoons maple syrup, or more to taste
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon**
  • 2 apples sliced
  • 2 pears sliced


In a bowl combine pumpkin, cream cheese, maple syrup, and cinnamon. Whisk until blended. Serve with apples and pears. Store leftovers in the fridge for up to three days.

**The recipe called for half of a teaspoon but I used the wrong spoon and ended up putting a whole teaspoon. It didn’t make a difference in any way. The dip was still gobbled up! 🙂

—> Recipe adapted from Parents Magazine

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I’ve mentioned here and there that I have this penchant for ripping recipes out of magazines and storing them in a folder to make at some undisclosed date. Well, here is one of those recipes! And it cooks in a slow-cooker! And it has cheese! And I love exclamation marks! 😉

2015-08-24 07.35.11

Cheesy Italian-Style Stuffed Peppers


  • ¼ cup instant brown rice
  • ½ pound lean ground turkey
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • ½ cup chopped onion
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 2 cups shredded Mozzarella cheese
  • 4 red bell peppers, tops removed, cored and seeded
  • Nonstick cooking spray


  1. Cook rice according to package directions.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine rice, turkey, Italian seasoning, onion, Parmesan cheese, ¼ cup tomatoes and 1 cup mozzarella cheese. Fill peppers with rice mixture.
  3. Coat the inside of a slow cooker with cooking spray and place filled peppers upright in cooker. Spoon remaining tomatoes over and between peppers; top each pepper with ¼ cup mozzarella cheese. Cook on low for 8 hours.

**Recipe adapted from Fitness Magazine

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Well you all know my love for Ella Woodward’s cookbook Deliciously Ella, and I am back with another recipe of hers that is really yummy!


It is called an Apple and Honey Loaf and it is quite tasty. When I posted this picture on Instagram I wrote that anything where the recipe calls for apples, honey, and almonds, I am all over that! And it is true. Apples are my favorite fruit to eat, and I probably eat one almost every day. Fun fact: I couldn’t stand the taste of apples when I was pregnant, which just goes to show how screwed up your taste buds get when you are creating a human life, lol 🙂 Luckily, my daughter loves apples just as much as her mommy!

But I digress…

This recipe is super easy to make and I really think you’ll love it!

apple honey loaf

Apple and Honey Loaf


  • 3 heaped tablespoons of pureed apple
  • 6 tablespoons honey
  • 1 ripe banana peeled
  • 1 ¼ cups ground almonds (about 4 ounces)
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 ¼ cups brown rice flour
  • coconut oil for greasing
  • 4 tablespoons of water


  • Preheat the oven to 400°
  • Place the apple puree, honey, and banana into a large mixing bowl and mash them together with a fork until you have a smooth mix.
  • Stir in the ground almonds, chia seeds, rice flour, and 4 tablespoons water and mix until smooth.
  • Grease a standard size loaf pan with coconut oil before pouring the mixture in and spreading it across. It is meant to be a long loaf and only 1 inch or so tall. (Don’t try to make the loaf too thick or else it won’t set. Seriously, I’ve made that mistake before. It really is only meant to be about 1 inch thick).
  • Bake for 50 minutes until the top turns a golden brown and you can pull a clean knife out of the middle of it.


**Recipe adapted from Deliciously Ella

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Yup, Spicy Roasted Chickpeas. Not a typo, not a mistake, all kinds of delicious!

A few months ago I picked up the cookbook Deliciously Ella by Ella Woodward and I have been hooked by her lovely recipes! It is a plant-based cookbook and although I am not on a specific plant-based diet, I aspire to have more plant-based recipes in my repertoire and want to incorporate more good things and less bad things into my meals. This cookbook has definitely been a great investment 🙂

This particular recipe is one of my favorites and it shows because when I make these chickpeas, I have a hard time not eating them all in a day! You can either eat these by themselves or as Ella does, she sprinkles them in her salads and soups.


Picture from my Instagram feed

Picture from my Instagram feed

Spicy Roasted Chickpeas


  • 3 cups canned chickpeas
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons chili flakes**
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • olive oil


  • Preheat the oven to 400° F.
  • Drain the chickpeas and place them on a large baking sheet.
  • Sprinkle the paprika, cumin, chili flakes and salt and pepper onto them and then drizzle over the maple syrup, lemon juice and some olive oil, stirring well to ensure that everything is evenly coated.
  • Bake for about 45 minutes, until the chickpeas are nice and crunchy.

Makes 1 large jar.

**The first time I made this, I added the 2 teaspoons of chili flakes. But since I like a little less spice, I now only add 1 teaspoon instead of the called for 2 teaspoons. Still spicy, just not as much 😉 It is up to you on how much of the chili flakes you are a fan of

⇒Recipe adapted from the book Deliciously Ella

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Stuffed Bell Peppers

Stuffed bell peppers are a great way to sneak in some extra veggies into the meal plan. I know not everyone is a fan of quinoa and even though that’s what the recipe initially called for, I substituted brown rice for the quinoa. Brown rice is less expensive and I don’t use quinoa often enough to justify the purchase.

If you are going to use brown rice instead like I did, just substitute the quinoa with 1 cup of cooked brown rice and continue with the rest of the directions.



Stuffed Bell Peppers


  • 2/3 cup quinoa, rinsed and drained
  • 6 bell peppers (red, green, yellow, doesn’t matter)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¾ cup diced carrots
  • ½ red onion, diced
  • 1 10-ounce package frozen spinach, thawed and drained
  • 1 15-ounce can red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ cup grated part-skim mozzarella (I used cheddar because that’s what I had on hand)


Preheat oven to 350°. Boil 1 ¹/3 cups water in a saucepan; add quinoa. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes. Keep covered; set aside. Remove pepper tops, stems and seeds. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add peppers, boil for 5 minutes and drain. Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add carrots; cook for 3 minutes. Add onion; cook for 5 minutes more. Stir in spinach and beans. Remove from heat and mix in quinoa and chili powder.

Fill peppers with quinoa mixture and place upright in a baking dish. Sprinkle with cheese. Add just enough water to form a very thin layer in the bottom of the dish. Bake for 20 minutes or until tops are lightly browned. Serve immediately.


**Recipe adapted from SHAPE magazine

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Tortilla Black Bean Casserole

This is a recipe I posted a few years ago, but I had to send it out again 🙂

Yum, yum, yum!! I cannot say enough about this meal! I love it and it is quite simple to make. I have an old Gooseberry Patch cookbook and that is where this recipe comes from. You can serve it as the main course with Spanish rice or some chips and guacamole if you want, or by itself as a pre-dinner appetizer.


Tortilla Black Bean Casserole

  • 2 c. chopped onion
  • 1 ½ c. green pepper, chopped
  • 14 ½ oz. can tomatoes, chopped
  • ¾ c. picante sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 t. ground cumin
  • 15 oz. can black beans
  • 12 6-inch corn tortillas
  • 2 c. Monterey Jack cheese shredded**

In a large skillet, combine onion, green pepper, undrained tomatoes, picante sauce, garlic and cumin. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer uncovered, for 10 minutes. Stir in beans. Spread one-third of the bean mixture over bottom of 13″ x 9″ pan. Top with half of the tortillas, overlapping as necessary, and half the cheese. Add another third of the bean mixture, then remaining tortillas and bean mixture. Cover and bake in a 350° oven for 30 to 35 minutes, or until heated through. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Let stand for 10 minutes. Cut into squares to serve. Makes 10 to 12 side servings or 6 to 8 main dish servings.

**Sidenote: We are a household that loves cheese. I tend to be a little heavy-handed with this ingredient and use more in this dish. It makes it even more delicious, as if that’s possible!

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