Category: HEALTHY CHOICES

Tofu and Veggie Stir-Fry with Peanut Butter Sauce

Tofu and Veggie Stir-Fry with Peanut Butter Sauce

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of PB2 Foods. All opinions are entirely my own.  Tofu and Veggie Stir-Fry with Peanut Butter Sauce is such a fantastic dish; it’s going to make you crave it over and over again. This meal…

Root Vegetable Sheet Pan

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Root Vegetable Sheet Pan is an easy, tasty and very efficient as well as budget-friendly way to feed your family. On top of it, it is very delicious and nutritious. It goes perfectly with fish, poultry or any other meat or protein. Don’t you just…

Cacio e Pepe Butternut Squash

Cacio e Pepe Butternut Squash

Cacio e Pepe Butternut Squash is one delicious, healthy and flavorful recipe. A perfect dish for your meatless Mondays or a quick weeknight dish if you wish to replace carblicious pasta.

Cacio e Pepe Butternut Squash

Well, we all know that Cacio e Pepe, or in translation cheese and pepper, is a simple and delicious way to prepare a pasta dish. It is a pasta dish from modern Roman cuisine.

However, I say move over zoodles because there is a new sheriff in town.

I predict that this year we going to see more and more of butternut squash noodles.

Don’t get me wrong I love zoodles, but you could mix and match and add zoodles to butternut squash for extra nutrition and flavour.

That being said its perfect just the way it is especially if you love butternut squash.

Cacio e Pepe Butternut Squash

You can serve it with any protein such as fish, poultry or meat, or tofu if you want a true meatless meal.

Anyhow, one fine afternoon I had this bowl of raw butternut squash noodles in my fridge. My husband picked up from the store just a few days before.

I would usually spiralize veggies myself, but I guess it was on sale and he got it for me.

He knows how much I love butternut squash. The only butternut squash dish that I never cared for is creamy butternut squash soup.

I do have a fantastic recipe for that soup, but I am just not a fan. Personally to me, it tastes like baby food.

Cacio e Pepe Butternut Squash

You may also like:

+ THAI HUMMUS PIZZA WITH BUTTERNUT SQUASH AND VEGETARIAN SAUSAGES

+ BUTTERNUT SQUASH, BEANS AND ONIONS OVER MIXED GREENS – SALAD

+ ROASTED BUTTERNUT SQUASH

+ SWEET PUMPKIN PORRIDGE

+ MEDITERRANEAN PASTA SALAD

+ BUTTERNUT SQUASH SOUP

If you get inspired and make my Cacio e Pepe Butternut Squash recipe, please tag me on Instagram.

@sandraseasycooking using hashtag #sandraseasycooking. Thank you so much in advance!

Happy Cooking!!!

Recipe
Yield: Serves 4

Cacio e Pepe Butternut Squash

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

Cacio e Pepe Butternut Squash is one delicious, healthy and flavorful recipe. A perfect dish for your meatless Mondays or a quick weeknight dish if you wish to replace carblicious pasta.

Ingredients

  • 5-6 cups butternut squash noodles (about 2 medium-size butternut squash)
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for serving
  • ¼ tsp kosher salt, or to taste
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 cup Pecorino Romano
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, the best if you grind it yourself on the coarsest setting, plus more for serving
  • ¼ cup Parmesan cheese for serving, if desired

Instructions

  1. Spiralize squashes: Cut necks off squashes and cut each in half crosswise. Using a thin spaghetti blade in a spiral maker, spiralize squash chunks. If noodles are very long, trim with kitchen shears to the desired length. You may use store-bought butternut squash noodles if you wish.
  2. In a large skillet on medium, melt butter and add olive oil. We are using butter even though it is not traditionally used because the butternut squash noodles are not pasta noodles so we need that extra creaminess that butter produces.
  3. Add noodles and salt and cook, tossing occasionally, until tender, about 10 to 12 minutes at medium-high. Add water a bit at the time every few minutes. Note* For regular Cacio e Pepe you would use pasta water, so we are adding splashes of water to help with tenderizing or cooking these veggie noodles faster as well as for making cheese sauce taste better.
  4. Remove skillet from heat and add Pecorino-Romano. as well as ground black pepper. Stir and toss vigorously until both ingredients are well incorporated into the butternut squash noodles. Toss in a drizzle of the olive oil and season with salt if needed.
  5. Sprinkle some parmesan cheese when you serve it if you desire.

Notes

You may add zucchini noodles and mix with butternut squash noodles.

Prep time 10 minutes only if you going to spiralize butternut squash yourself. Cook time depends on the pan and the temperature you are cooking at. I like my skillet wide, and I cook at medium-high heat.

Baked Sweet Potatoes

Baked Sweet Potatoes

Baked Sweet Potatoes are one of my favorite Autumn treats. It warms your heart and soul, and the pleasant aroma is just enchanting. I did not grow up with sweet potatoes. The first time I tried sweet potatoes I was 18 or 19 years old.…

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I might be a bit late in the Turmeric Golden Milk posting game, but I have been drinking this one for a few years now. Well, I must humbly confess, I do not drink it very often. Nevertheless, when I feel sluggish or need some…

Sweet Pumpkin Porridge

Sweet Pumpkin Porridge

Sweet Pumpkin Porridge

Sweet Pumpkin Porridge is one of those perfect comforting foods during cooler weather.

Ah, don’t you just love the smell of cooler weather approaching, beautiful Autumn scenery and comfort food?

Alright, perhaps we look forward to comforting holiday food more than anything else, but fall weather and scenery is up there, too?!

I just love going to mountains this time of year and breathing fresh air, enjoying gorgeous nature and looking at trees that look like man-made color placements.

To be honest, there is nothing more relaxing than enjoying a quiet time in nature. I worked so hard this year that I need one more short weekend getaway, preferably with my hubby only. Just two of us!

Well, to be honest, I’d miss my kids and kitties way too much. Needless to say, the weekend getaway does sound like a dream right now.

Sweet Pumpkin Porridge

Let’s talk more about this tasty and sweet pumpkin porridge. It is a simply delightful comfort with every spoon you take.

I understand that it is not everyone’s cup of tea, nevertheless, it is so delicious and above all fulfilling as well as healthy.

Tap here for more tasty Fall Recipes

Since it is Pumpkin season I wanted to share pumpkin recipes and some of its health benefits.

  • Pumpkins/squashes are not only delicious but like I said healthy; they relieve stress, they’re good for weight loss, good for eyes and skin, it boosts the immune system and helps the digestive system and yes, they could reduce risk of cancer. I believe it is in the category of super-foods! 

When I was growing up, rice porridge was usually offered to the kids. Which is not as flavorful.

Sweet Pumpkin Porridge

However, it was mostly eaten when we felt sick and needed something light just to keep us going, and through the days of illness.

Any porridge is good for the digestive system because it’s light and texture is easy to digest.

Check out more Breakfast Ideas

I made a twist, a huge one on Korean traditional pumpkin porridge called Hobaak Jook (juk). I am not saying that Korean pumpkin porridge is not delicious, on the contrary, it is very comforting, especially if you like pumpkin.

First, instead of boiling, I roasted pumpkin. The best one for porridge or even soups is winter squash such as Butternut, Lakota, Kabocha, Buttercup squashes/pumpkins. My favorite is Kabocha, which I found in Trader Joe’s.

Fall Recipes

Pumpkin is naturally sweet, but the winter squash that I wrote above is just a little sweeter. I like to mix different pumpkins as it gives better and different levels of flavor.

Also instead of sugar, I used organic honey, and spices such as ground ginger, cinnamon and pumpkin spice which made a huge difference. With all the changes and twists you are increasing the flavor as well as health benefits. 

Comparing rice that you granulate yourself vs. sweet rice flour in pumpkin porridge, I like granulated rice because even though that coarse rice is cooked it still gives you little nuttiness.

You might also like:

If you make my Sweet Pumpkin Porridge, please tag me on Instagram. @sandraseasycooking with hashtags #sandraseasycooking. I would love to share your creations with everyone. Thank you so much in advance!

https://www.sandraseasycooking.com/?s=fall+recipes
Yield: Serves 4

Sweet Pumpkin Porridge

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Additional Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 2 hours 15 minutes

Sweet Pumpkin Porridge is one of those perfect comforting foods during cooler weather

Ingredients

  • 3 lb pumpkin or winter squash (Salt, ground ginger, cinnamon, brown sugar - Few pinches on each slice)
  • 1 cup Sweet Mochi Rice/Glutinous Rice (or Flour)/Water, enough to cover over the rice for soaking
  • 1-1.5 cup water, for cooking
  • 1/2 tsp. Salt
  • 2 tsp. Pumpkin Spice
  • Organic Honey, to taste /or other sweeteners
  • Pumpkin seeds for garnish, or any nuts

Instructions

  1. Wash the rice 3-4 times and soak in a big bowl for about an hour.
  2. When the rice is soaked at least 1 hour (although, it's the best if you soak it for a couple of hours) place rice into a food processor with a bit of water and puree until it gets completely granulated. READ NOTES
  3. Preheat oven on 400 degrees Fahrenheit. 
  4. Pumpkin Prep: Slice the pumpkin into thicker slices (be careful), take out the seeds and reserve for later; Season pumpkin with few pinches of salt, ground ginger, cinnamon, and brown sugar to taste. Rub all over and place in baking pan. Roast until the pumpkin slices are tender, about 30-40 minutes. Once done, separate skin from the pumpkin flesh (be careful it could be still hot) and Puree in a food processor, and add a little bit of water so it's easier to puree. I ended up with little more than 2 cups of pumpkin puree. 
  5. In a large pot add 1 cup of water and pumpkin puree. Stir until it bubbles, then start adding the rice puree, keep stirring and add pumpkin spice, salt, and honey. 
  6. Stirring is very important because it can stick to the bottom of the pot very fast. Lower the heat on simmer, and slowly just stir for 5 minutes. Add more water when porridge becomes too thick, and cook for 20 more minutes on simmer. It's done when rice becomes smoother and cooked. Taste the porridge and add more sweetener to your taste preference. 
  7. Garnish with roasted and peeled pumpkin seeds OR chopped nuts. Serve on room temperature. 

Notes

  • You can skip the part of soaking the rice and instead use sweet Glutinous rice flour ..just make sure to mix it into a smooth texture (with water). You can find videos regarding this type of porridge. When you are using flour, it will be more smooth. I like the texture of granulated rice in porridge. You can also make it thick or thinner just by adjusting it with water. When you taste that rice is cooked take it off the stove and cover. It's all in the taste senses, so use them! 
  • For pumpkin seeds, I wash them, dry with kitchen paper towels and then toss on the newspaper then outside to air dry completely. Preheat oven on 400F then put sea salt, I used actually sriracha salt and it was fantastic. Bake until they are toasted. However, if you going to garnish porridge with pumpkin seeds, of curse peel them. 
  • For baby food, I would definitely either make rice cooked with adding more water or use flour because it gives you a smooth texture. If the baby is not at least year and a half please do not use honey, and add some other natural sweetener. Of course, you got to keep it a notch down because babies can't handle sweet like adults.


Chaffles – Low Carb Keto Waffles

Chaffles – Low Carb Keto Waffles

If you are following a low carb lifestyle, then you probably heard of or made these yummy keto-approved waffles. What are Chaffles-Low Carb Keto Waffles? I know, by the name you would never tell what it is. I have no idea who gave the name.…

Oven Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

Oven Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

In my opinion, Oven Roasted Pumpkin Seeds are one of the most addictive, but tasty snacks that we could ever munch on. They are a labor of love, truly. We do need several steps to prep them, a drop of patience and love but they…

Roasted Cauliflower and Cheese

Roasted Cauliflower and Cheese

Roasted Cauliflower and Cheese

I could eat this delicious Roasted Cauliflower and Cheese probably every other day. Well, I like calling this Mac-flower and Cheese ’cause I used Cauliflower instead of macaroni.

This recipe blew my Instagram account after food52 reshared my picture of Mac-flower and Cheese. Since I did not have a recipe on my blog, I received well over 300 messages, all asking for this recipe. It was a madhouse for a good week.

So I re-tested a recipe twice again to make sure. I am not a huge fan of cream cheese addition, but my family really likes it so I will give you an option. You can use it or omit.

CLICK HERE FOR MORE CAULIFLOWER RECIPES

Roasted Cauliflower and Cheese

You can use this cheese sauce over roasted potatoes, peppers or broccoli. It is so good!

Don’t get me wrong, cream cheese does not make this sauce bad, just I like it better without it.

What makes this meal unique? It’s cauliflower and we all know the hype over this brain food. Also, it is lower in carb and really delicious. Even my kids eat this one and my boys are not fans of cauliflower but they are eating this way.

I feel like even if you eat carbs roasted cauliflower could be mixed with macaroni and cheese. That way you eat a slightly “healthier” pasta.

DO YOU WANT MORE SIDE DISH IDEAS? CLICK HERE AND GRAB TASTY RECIPES.

I always loved cauliflower so I could eat it literally any possible way. Give the cauliflower a chance as well as this yummy recipe. I know it is not everyone’s cup of tea, but it is really not bad at all.

Roasted Cauliflower and Cheese

Also, you have two option on how to prepare cauliflower; roasted on the oven or use your air fryer. It is so easy when you pop cauliflower florets in the air fryer. No mess!

I love my air fryer for real, but you can totally use sheet pan and just roast in the oven. The conventional oven is alright as well, as long as you cook cauliflower.

If you try this recipe for any other from my site please tag me on Instagram. @sandraseasycooking #sandraseasycooking. Thank you in advance!

Roasted Cauliflower And Cheese
Yield: 4

Roasted Cauliflower And Cheese

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

Easy and delicious side dish. It is perfect with any protein or on its own.

Ingredients

  • 2-3 pounds cauliflower
  • Salt, ground black pepper and a drizzle of olive oil
  • Pinch or two of herbs such as dried parsley

CHEESE SAUCE

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black
  • 1 1/2 cups warm milk (or half and half, whipped cream)
  • 6 ounces mild cheddar, shredded
  • 3 ounces Swiss cheese, shredded
  • Salt to taste

ASSEMBLY

  • 1-ounce mild cheddar, shredded
  • a drizzle of olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried or fresh parsley

Instructions

  1. Wash and separate cauliflower into bite-size pieces.
  2. Season with salt and pepper then drizzle with olive oil.
  3. Toss it to coat then cook in the air fryer at 375 Fahrenheit for 16-17 minutes or roast in the oven for 20-25 minutes at 400F. Make sure that the cauliflower is in one layer on the baking sheet. Also, you may use your convection oven. Air Fryer is basically a convenient "countertop" convection oven.


SAUCE

  1. While cauliflower is cooking prep for the cheese sauce. You can use pre-shredded cheese but it is so much better if you shred it yourself.
  2. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium-low heat; remove from heat. Stir in flour, salt, turmeric powder, and pepper.
  3. Put the saucepan back on the heat and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Gradually add warm milk or light cream, stirring until well-mixed.
  4. Continue cooking, stirring constantly, until thickened and smooth. Reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring, for 5 minutes.
  5. Add both types of cheese and cook on a lower temperature, stirring, until the cheese has melted and the sauce is smooth and well blended.
  6. The sauce will start to get thicker. Now, taste it and add salt according to your taste.

Assembly

  1. Place cauliflower into the skillet, pour cheese over it, slightly stir to coat then add a drizzle of olive oil and a bit of shredded cheese. Add a good sprinkle of dried parsley.
  2. Turn the stove off and serve immediately.

Notes

I never tried placing it overnight in the fridge.

DISCLOSURE:

SANDRA’S EASY COOKING a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking recommended products to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. My Amazon Store

Salmon and Vegetables Sheet Pan Dinner

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