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.

On top of that, they are rich in omega-6 fatty acids and contain a decent amount of omega-3s, as well. If you are plant-based or don’t eat a lot of fish, making friend with omega fatty-acid-rich foods is a wise idea for optimal brain health and neurological function.

Wow so that was a fun 5 seconds of my academic voice coming out there^.

Easy Nut-free Vegan Hemp Parmesan

Paired with nutritional yeast, which is rich in many B vitamins including the difficult-for-vegans-to-consume B12, protein, and other important trace nutrients, you’ve got a plant-based nourishment slam dunk. Also, importantly, it tastes good!

Anyways, behold the easiest vegan Parmesan you’ll ever make. It’s also nut-free for those with allergies. It’s delicious on salads, pasta, Mexican dishes, or in any recipe you’d use traditional parm.

Easy Delicious Nut-free Vegan Hemp Parmesan

I hope you make this vegan parmesan and I hope you like it! Champagne wishes and vegan parmesan dreams!

Nut-free Vegan Hemp Parmesan Cheese

Vegan Hemp Parmesan

Prep Time:  5 minutes
Cook Time: 0 minutes
Servings: about 1/2 cup vegan parmesan

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup hemp seeds or hemp hearts
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder (optional)

Method:

  1. Combine ingredients in a bowl. Toss.
  2. Serve on pasta, salads, roasted vegetables, or wherever you would use dairy parmesan. Store in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks in the refrigerator.

Ginger Miso Soba Noodle Soup with Wasabi Tofu

All aboard the hot mess express! Choo-choo we’re chuggin’ along. What mess, you ask? Well, let’s see. I move across the country in 5 days with zero help, I haven’t packed (but I did do some laundry! – #win), I don’t have an apartment to move into when I get there, AND I have about a million things to do before I leave, including work on Saturday. Heyyyyy reality, it’s really nice to ignore you.

Ginger Miso Soba Noodle Soup with Wasabi Tofu-Vegan

Also, a massive wrench was just thrown into my life and everything is more complicated now. People keep asking me “What are you going to do?” to which I respond, “Go get an iced coffee and chill.” And that’s about all I can handle right now. Hi, adulthood, you scare me.

Ginger Miso Soba Noodle Soup with Wasabi Soy Tofu - Vegan

Anyways, when it comes to crazy times, nothing comforts me more than baking, and/or making a nice home-cooked meal. Home-cooked meals = comfort x 20. Even when you cook it yourself. It can’t be beat.

So the Recipe Redux challenge for August was, “Back to the Table,” and asked contributors to share a recipe that was either an old family favorite or a current family favorite – just something that brought or brings your family together as school and fall and reality sink back in. Speaking of school, hellooo graduate school at Columbia University, I’ll see you Monday! And hopefully maybe I’ll have an apartment by then…

Ginger Miso Soba Noodle Soup with Wasabi Tofu - Vegan .

Anyways, my mom used to make the most amazing home cooked meals ever! Favorites were always her pastas and soups (she kicks BUTT at those), and other dishes full of perfectly cooked or roasted vegetables nd homemade salads with homemade dressing and berry crisps for dessert. Yum. You raised me well, mama. Thanks.

Life is much different now than back when I could sit with a family of four and eat. Lots has changed. And family meals have taken on a new meaning. I did actually live with my mom this year, and we actually did share a lot of dinners. But now-a-days with a different family structure and just the two of us, “family dinner,” has a much different meaning.

Ginger Miso Soba Noodle Soup with Wasabi Tofu - Vegan

My mom isn’t really  able to cook much anymore, so we made a lot of simple things and/or went out to sushi. Every Monday and Tuesday is half-price sushi and hibachi and ramen and noodle bowls an excellent Japanese place nearby. So right now, to me, family meals mean Japanese.

No complaints; I love Japanese food. It’s simple, clean, and allows flavors to speak for themselves. The weekly-Japanese dinners inspired this meal, as now I associate Japanese food as mommy time.

Miso Ginger Broth

So here is a big bowl of delicious soba noodles in an umami ginger miso broth. I bought mine at Trader Joe’s. I then added some marinated Wasabi Baked Tofu because marinated baked tofu is delicious and I just found wasabi paste on clearance at Target for $0.84 and felt like I won the lottery. WHOO! I love wasabi. #feeltheburn.

This dish probably is not in anyway authentic Japanese cuisine (just like chicken parmesan is faux-Italian), but hey – it’s inspired by Japanese flavors and my current definition of a family dinner. Hope you enjoy! And if you like Japenese-ish things, check out this Miso Ginger Baked Tofu, this Miso Hummus,  or these Soba Noodle Asian Kale Salad with Soy Ginger Dressing. Yums.

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30-45 minutes
Level: Easy

serves 2-3 as entree, 4 as side

Ingredients – Ginger Miso Soba NoodleSoup:

  • 32 ounces (1 box) Ginger Miso Broth (from Trader Joe’s – you can substitute other miso broth and add additional ginger) with 1/2 cup reserved for tofu marinade.
  • 4-ounces soba noodles
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil or vegetable oil
  • 1 scallion
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger (can substitute dried ground ginger)
  • 3/4 cup mushrooms
  • 3/4 cup sugar snap peas or broccoli (or both!)
  • 1/2 cup diced green onions

Ingredients – Wasabi Tofu:

  • 1/2 cup Ginger Miso Broth
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2-4 teaspoons wasabi paste, (depending on desired level of spice ~ I tend to like things really hot)
  • 1 tablespoon orange juice (can substitute one tablespoon sugar)
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
  • 1-2 tablespoons Sriracha (optional)

Directions:

  1. Drain as much liquid from the tofu as possible by pressing gently with a paper towel. Prepare marinade by combining Ginger Miso Broth, Soy Sauce, wasabi paste, freshly grated ginger, orange juice, and Sriracha. Whisk well.
  2. Slice tofu into bite-sized pieces and place in a low baking dish (a 9×9-inch or similar baking tray should work). Pour marinade over tofu. Cover and set aside in the refrigerator, at least 30 minutes (ideally 2-3 hours)
  3. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 425 F. Prepare soba noodles according to directions on package, drain and rinse in cold water and set aside.
  4. Place tofu in the oven and bake for 30-40 minutes until firm, browned, and crispy around the edges, flipping halfway through if desired. When finished, remove from oven and allow to cool. While it’s baking, you can prepare the broth, below.
  5. Dice scallions and garlic. Dice green onions and set aside. If using broccoli, wash and cut into bite sized pieces. Wash and dice mushrooms.
  6. In a large skillet pan over medium heat, warm oil with scallions and garlic and allow to simmer until scallions become translucent. Add freshly grated ginger and allow to simmer. Add broccoli and/or snap peas and mushrooms and cook until vegetables become slightly tender, 4-6 minutes. Add broth and allow to warm and simmer, about 15 minutes.
  7. Add soba noodles to broth and warm for an addition 2-3 minutes.
  8. Serve in bowls and top with tofu and green onions, and Sriracha if desired. Serve with this Asian Kale Salad.

For more Recipe Redux Back to The Table Meals, click around below:

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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

Ingredients: 

  • 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

Directions:
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.

MORE PASTA:

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! 😎

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

Ingredients:

  • 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

Directions:

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.

Bow Ties with Pears, Spinach, Walnuts, & Cherries in Rosemary Garlic Sauce

[Disclosure:] “By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by the National Pasta Association and am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.”

Once upon a time I went out to dinner in New York with my friend Michelle. She really wanted a hearty bowl of pasta and we were both too tired to travel far, so after some yelping, we ended up at this adorable Italian restaurant a few blocks from my apartment called Spina. It was candlelight and had a charming server with an accent and for reasons beyond my explanation we were the only two at the restaurant. This has never happened to me anywhere, let alone New York City. It would have been totally romantic if it was a date. But instead we cracked terrible jokes and girl chatted and probably audibly burped a lot.

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Anyways, I got this one ravioli dish that was had handmade ravoili stuffed with some sweet pear filling and covered in rosemary sauce. I almost didn’t order it, but as if the server read my mind when I was debating about it aloud, he said (in an Italian accent): “Miss, if you are worried about the dish being too sweet, do not worry. It is not. It is perfect.”

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I looked back up into his beautiful eyes, and ordered in blind faith. He was absolutely correct. I still think about it all that ravioli all the time. It was one of those dishes so unusual you just want to keep eating it. So I did. I finished it all. I was so full I didn’t even want to get dessert after (!!).

Anywho, this is one prime example of pasta being what dreams are made of. I love me some good pasta. Nothing will ever be as good as my grandma’s (I will share my closest recipe to hers at some future time), but in the meantime, there are plenty of other creative ways to play with pasta.

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There’s also this misconception that pasta is an auto-fail for being healthy. This is false. In Italy, it’s often a small portion, served with salad and other vegetables, either incorporated into the pasta or on the side. And pasta is full of energy-providing carbohydrates and has a solid amount of plant-based protein (extra points if you use whole wheat varieties!). So when enjoyed with veggies, or in this case fruits AND veggies, pasta is certainly part of a healthy meal. It’s also cheap and filling, which is a double win for pretty much everyone. Carbs are wonderful, aren’t they? You all probably know my favorite hashtag already: #carbs5ever

This dish was inspired by the one I had in New York. It would also be really great with linguine noodles. I just had bowties on hand and bowties are fun. Anyways, it’s a relatively light, sweet, intriguing pasta dish with fruits AND veggies. The pears and cherries are intriguing and sweet, and the rosemary sauce provides a balancing bite. The spinach adds color, umami flavors, and a boatload of nutrients, while the walnuts provide protein, omega-3s, and crunch. It’s also vegan, so it appeals to those with dietary preferences and dairy intolerances. The mash up of different flavors and textures makes this pasta dish fun and interesting to just. keep. eating.

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Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Level: easy

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup uncooked pasta (I used bowties)
  • 1 large pear
  • 1 large garlic clove
  • 1 1/4 cup almond, soy, or regular milk
  • 2 teaspoons rosemary, dried or fresh
  • 2 cups spinach
  • 1/2 cup crushed or chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup dried cherries
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Directions:

1. Bring 6 cups water to a rolling boil in a large pot. Add pasta and cook until al dente.

2. Mince garlic. In a sauté pan, add enough olive oil to cover the bottle of the pan and warm over medium heat. Add minced garlic and allow to simmer for a few minutes.

3. Slowly add almond milk and rosemary, and increase to medium-high heat. Allow the sauce to cook down and thicken, until about 1/3 its original volume. Add salt and pepper, more to taste if desired.

4. Thinly slice pear. Place pear slices into simmering sauce and cook until pears are tender, about 4 minutes.

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5. Add spinach and cooked pasta to the pan and toss with a spoon or tongs until pasta is coated with sauce. Spinach should wilt slightly in the process. Top with crushed walnuts and dried cherries, and toss again. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

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 6. Enjoy!

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