Vegan Tomato Pie

Vegan Tomato Pie

In case you didn’t know, I moved to Jersey City, New Jersey last October and have really enjoyed it thus far.

Vegan Tomato Pie

After so many years in Manhattan, Jersey City has been a welcomed change of pace, and a couple weeks ago, in light of #InternationalNewJerseyDay, I did some googling to learn more about Jersey’s historical background and food scene.

delicious easy vegan tomato pie

While Wikipedia-ing and googling away, I discovered that addition to diner food and blueberries and bagels, New Jersey tomato pie is a thing.

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Vegan Hemp Parmesan

Vegan Hemp Parmesan

True story: I grew up with a tiny Silician grandmother (“Oma” who loved to feed me lots and lots of yummy food. My favorite forever and always was her pasta with homemade sauce with a sprinkle of parmesan cheese on top. The lady also made the most amazing salads. No other food has ever tasted as good.

Nut-free Vegan Hemp Parmesan

The woman had a gift: she could make the simplest ingredients taste phenomenal. No recipes, just all by look and feel. Bless her genius culinary skills.

Oma always had Kraft parmesan out on the table. Yup, the totally American, shelf-stable stuff in a blue shaker jar. According to my mom, it was the ‘only game in town’ for a long time before importing foods became more mainstream and better options were available. Regardless, Kraft parm will always remind me of her.

Hemp Hearts

I was never big on melted cheese, but I always did love me some parm on top of pasta or salad. Since going dairy-free, I’ve ventured into the world of making my own parm.

For a very long time, I’ve pulsed up walnuts or cashews and added nutritional yeast as the base for parm. While this works well, I recently brought a bag of hemp seeds and thought the shape, size, and nutty flavor would work perfectly for vegan parm. Turns out, I was right.

Nut-free Vegan Hemp Parm

Hemp seeds/hearts have recently entered my life and I can’t get enough. And they’re one of those hype foods that’s actually quite good for you. 3 Tablespoons packs 10 grams of protein, 20% DV iron, and 3 grams of fiber.

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Vegan Broccoli Parmesan Pasta

As I write this post, it’s 7:38am, and I’m already down to eat some pasta. In my opinion, there is no right or wrong time to eat any food. The best time to eat a food is whenever the heck you feel like it. Salad and sushi for breakfast has happened in my life, and I like to encourage others to listen to their bodies and cravings and do the same.

Parmesan Brocolli Pasta

But honestly, when isn’t it a good time for pasta? Are you ever sad when you eat pasta? If you’re anything like me, then no, probably not. Pasta is happy food. Especially pasta like this pasta, that reminds me of my childhood.

Parmesan Brocolli Pasta - vegan

I wrote this recipe for a project I was working on for Spoon University, which if you follow my blog or know me in real life or creepily look through my closet and examine my stuff close enough to notice I have a hefty amount of #spoonswag, you know is something I’m super passionate about and love to do. If you don’t already know about Spoon, it’s the nation’s first online college food magazine. I’ve been lucky enough to be a part of it for over 2 years and it’s been amazing to watch it grow, and it has grown and changed me in many ways. Thanks Spoon, ILY.

Broccoli Parmesan Pasta

As I mention in the Spoonie post, this is a favorite childhood dish of mine. My mommy  used to make this dinner for our family, and what she considered this simple, throw-it-together-I-don’t-really-feel-like-cooking dish remains to be a favorite of mine and my sisters (Hi Jenn, if you’re reading!). It’s 5 ingredients and takes 20 minutes. Nothing could be better. And this dish somehow tastes like a gourmet meal even though it’s a combination of very simple ingredients. Each highlights the other, and complements one another in both flavor and texture, creating a mashup of salty, savory, nutty cheesy, vegetable-filled goodness. Add more or less broccoli and/or parm to suit your needs. Remember, in the kitchen, you da boss ;-).

Parmesan Brocolli Pasta

So I grew up on this recipe made with imported Italian parmesan, but now as a primarily plant-based individual, I have revamped it a lil bit to suit my current lifestyle. You can buy vegan parmesan like this one at most grocery stores if you look or ask for it, google a recipe to make your own (there are a bunch),  or if you just want simple, sub nutritional yeast with a slightly different taste. Not vegan? Hit it up with dairy parm if that’s your style. Whatever way you make it, it’ll taste great.

Here’s the original post for Spoon, and here’s a recent post I put together about how and when to use different pots and pans, or just check out the recipe below. Happy pasta eating peoples :-).

Level: Easy

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 15 minutes

Servings: 1-2


  • 1 cup pasta, uncooked
  • 1 cup broccoli florets
  • 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ¼ cup vegan Parmesan substitute, grated Parmesan cheese,  or nutritional yeast
  • salt & pepper to taste

1. Bring 6 cups water to a boil in a pot. Cook pasta according to directions on package.

Baker Steamed Broccoli 2 Katherine JC Penney Epicurious

2. Bring 1-2 inches of water to a boil in a small saucepan.

3. Chop broccoli into even pieces and place in a steamer basket, and place on top of the saucepan. Cover with lid and steam until tender, about 5-6 minutes. Alternately, cook broccoli covered in the microwave for 3-5 minutes, or until tender.

Parmesan Brocolli Pasta

4. Drain cooked pasta and return to pan. Add olive oil, cooked broccoli, grated Parmesan, and salt and pepper to taste.


Simple Lemon Pasta

Hello! Sorry if you’ve tried to visit kbaked this past week; due to technically difficulties the page was down for six whole days! But I’m happy to say we’re BACK baby (and that I stopped breathing when it was down).

Lemon Pasta Kbaked Vegan Simple

Blah. Life has been busy and hectic and weird this last week. So do you know what chaos means? Easy pasta. Like this beautiful Simple Lemon Pasta. 5 Ingredients. 15 minutes start to finish. Refreshing and light, yet filling.

Lemon Pasta Kbaked Vegan Simple

I used to make this a lot when I was busy. And then that thing happened where you forget about a recipe for a while and then you remember it and it’s the whole everything-old-was-new-again infatuation like when you find that old mix CD you used to jam out to all the time two Januarys ago. This pasta is just like that, but better.

Lemon Pasta Kbaked Vegan Simple

Pasta is love. Easy pasta = double love. And triple love = puppies. Today is my adoption anniversary with my dog, Millie, aka the best thing that’s ever happened to me. Happy one year to my sweet nugget!

millie the nugget <3

Make this pasta. Pretend it’s spring if you want to. It’s refreshing lemon zing will make you feel hopeful that spring is indeed coming, even though it’s like 14 degrees. Add peas if you like. Or add asparagus. Or don’t. As long as the noodles and lemon juice, salt, and olive oil are there, you won’t be let down. Happy noodling and happy eating! 😎

Screen Shot 2015-02-08 at 2.20.41 PM

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 9-11 minutes, depending on pasta used
Level: Easy
serves 2


  • 6 ounces (1/2 pound or 1/2 a box) linguine, spaghetti, or any other pasta of choice
  • 3-4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (about 2 lemons)
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast, freshly grated parmasen or vegan parmesan, depending on preference
  • 3/4 cup fresh peas or asparagus (optional)
  • salt & pepper to taste


1. Cook pasta according to directions on box.
2. While pasta is cooking, juice lemons and set lemon juice aside.

Screen Shot 2015-02-08 at 2.19.39 PM 3. When al dente, drain pasta and return to pan. Add olive oil and toss to coat. Add lemon juice and nutritional yeast or parmesan. Add fresh peas or asparagus. Add salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a bowl and serve with more nutritional yeast or parmesan.

pea pesto



this is a modified recipe from one of my favorite television chefs, Giada DeLaurentiis. its fairly simple, does not require many ingredients, and is always a huge hit at parties.

traditionally, as giada does, it is served on crostini (bread toasted in the oven with olive oil and garlic), but personally i think it makes a great addition to sandwiches, store-bought ravioli, or in place of hummus as a veggie/cracker/bread dip. 

it doesn’t matter how you want to eat it, but do eat it. the peas are sweet and flavorful (not to mention high in fiber), and when pungent garlic and parmesan temper the sweetness, you get a complex, addictive, blissful dip that you’ll want to eat with a spoon. 

pictured above on oven toasted baguette that was brushed with extra virgin olive oil and rubbed with a garlic clove. halved cherry tomatoes were added to compliment the sweetness of the peas, and leftover shredded parmesan added a decorative and delicious finishing touch. 



for the pea pesto:

  • one thawed 10-ounce package frozen peas
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • dash of pepper
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil


  • thaw frozen peas by leaving them at room temperature or on low heat in the microwave in a microwave-safe bowl
  • peel and mince the garlic clove
  • in a food processor, pulse together the peas, garlic, cheese, salt, and pepper
  • with machine running, drizzle in olive oil slowly and keep the processor running until the mixture is even and smooth
  • serve on crotini, or in place of hummus with crudités, crackers, and bread

for crostini:

  • preheat oven to 300 degrees
  • slice baguette style bread diagonally or cut sliced loaf bread in half or into triangles
  • brush bread lightly with olive oil using a pastry brush or with an olive-oil moistened folded paper towel square
  • cut a garlic clove in half and rub the freshly cut surface of the garlic onto the oiled bread
  • bake for 5-10 minutes until lightly toasted

there you have it! happy eating 🙂