Category Archives: Recipe-Vegetables

Turmeric Roasted Carrots with Carrot Top Harissa

This recipe emerged from a recipe for a Roasted Carrot Soup on the What’s Cooking Good Looking blog, but I like to chew my food and am a somewhat lazy cook anyway, so I opted out of turning the ingredients into a blended soup and created a side dish of them instead.
MY, OH MY, this did not disappoint!

Enough harissa was made to be used on grilled chicken, salmon, and other proteins throughout the week. Carrot tops are often thrown out before they get to market, but if you find a batch of carrots with tops attached, grab them and get crackin’ on this recipe!

Carrot tops are rich in vitamin A, and are rumored to have decent amounts of calcium, phosphorus, Vitamin C, iron and zinc. Carrots are a member of the same family as parsley and cilantro, and these two herbs are nutrition powerhouses so it stands to reason carrot tops may also provide a wonderful source of vitamins and minerals. 

Make this recipe on a chilly night or any time you feel your meals are lacking a little excitement. This will reset our palate and remind you how delightful vegetables can be!

Turmeric Roasted Carrots with Carrot Top Harissa


for the turmeric spiced carrots:
2 cloves of garlic
1 teaspoon of turmeric
1 teaspoon of cumin
1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt
a pinch of cayenne
2 tbsp. of olive oil

for the carrot top harissa: 
1 cup of green carrot tops, chopped
1/2 cup of cilantro
5 mint leaves
2 small garlic clove, sliced
the juice of 1 lemon
1/2 teaspoon of cumin
1/4 teaspoon of salt
about 2 tbsp. of extra virgin olive oil

Make the spice rub, and roast the carrots:

  • Pre-heat the oven to 400º. 
  • Make the turmeric spice rub by placing all of the ingredient for the rub into a food processor and pulse until you have a consistent mixture. 
  • Place the onions and carrots onto a parchment lined baking sheet and rub them with the spice mixture. Roast for about 30 minutes, until the carrots are very soft/fork tender. 

While the carrots are roasting, make the carrot top harissa:

  • Place all of the ingredients for the carrot top harissa into a food processor (except for the oil). Pulse a few times, and then drizzle in the oil in a slow stream while the food processor is running, until you have a consistent mixture. Set aside until you’re ready to serve. 

Remove the carrots from the oven and lay them out of a platter. Serve with Harissa and extra lemon wedges, if desired. 

Carrot Top Chimichurri

Chimichurri is this amazing flavor enhancer that goes well on pretty much everything. A Argentinian staple, this recipe deviates from the original by replacing the parsley with carrot tops. This is by far my favorite way to use delicate carrot fronds. Chimichurri puts a touch of sparkle into eggs, chicken, pork, salad dressing, steak, roasted vegetables, and black beans (among other things I’m certain). Add a dollop to tacos, an omelet, your salad, or hummus and prepare for a flavor explosion! Thanks to for the idea!

Cilantro & Carrot Green Chimichurri

  • 1 large handful of cilantro
  • Carrot greens (from 4-5 carrots)
  • 1 serrano chili, stem and seeds removed
  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • Salt & pepper, to taste
  • The juice of 1 lime
  • 1/4 cup olive oil

To assemble the chimichurri, pulse the garlic cloves and serrano chili together in a food processor or a Vitamix. Add the carrot greens, cilantro, salt, pepper, and lime juice and process while pouring the olive oil in a steady stream. Blend until the mixture is well combined. (I prefer my chimichurri to have a little bit of texture, so I’m careful not to over-blend.)

This also makes an excellent marinade! Enjoy!

Loaded Cauliflower Soup

This recipe, inspired by one I saw here, serves one person and provides a whopping 4 servings of veg per bowl. Blending vegetables makes it easy to add extra servings in! Save yourself time by purchasing pre-cut cauliflower, using leftover roasted cauliflower from earlier in the week, or raiding the salad bar for ready-to-steam florets.


  • 2 cups cooked cauliflower florets
  • ⅔ to ¾ cup chicken broth, divided
  • 1 dash garlic powder
  • Freshly cracked black pepper
  • 2 tbsp. solid fat from can of full-fat coconut milk
  • ⅓ cup full fat coconut milk
  • 2 slices cooked bacon, crumbled
  • 1 teaspoon snipped fresh parsley
  • ¼ teaspoon lemon zest
  • Salt to taste
  1. In a blender or food processor, combine cauliflower, ⅔ cup broth, garlic powder and pepper. Cover and blend until smooth.
  2. Transfer to a small saucepan. Bring just to boiling over medium heat. Whisk in coconut fat and milk with enough of the remaining broth to reach desired consistency; heat through.
  3. To serve, top soup with bacon, parsley and lemon zest.

Instant Pot Detox Mashed Fauxtatoes

Image may contain: food
I’m so excited about these mashed fauxtatoes! The CSA box delivered Jerusalem artichokes (also known as sunchokes) and a cauliflower that was wasting away without purpose finally found a home. The result? MAGIC.

Winter’s sunchokes and cauliflower pair together for a subtlety sweet, satisfying replacement for mashed potatoes…PERFECT for when winter has you craving all the carbs.

Sunchokes (also known as Jerusalem artichokes) are a root vegetable, similar to yams, sweet potatoes and carrots. At first glance, they look a lot like ginger, as they are much smaller than most root veggies and knobby, just like ginger is. Sunchokes are filled with a special fiber called inulin which feeds beneficial bacteria in the gut (like Lactobacillus species) and contributes to production of short chain fatty acids like butyrate, which also improve the quality and integrity of the gut walls while also providing food for the cells that line the intestinal wall. Increasing your prebiotics can even help you absorb more minerals from the food you eat by supporting a healthy bacterial milieu.  Did you know that the gut is the second most prolific detox organ?? By supporting gut health,  your liver has an easier go of it.
Speaking of detoxification, cauliflower is one of the wonder foods in this area. Like its other cruciferous cousins, it’s rich in sulfurophane which helps the body render toxins like xenoestrogens and BPA harmless enough to leave the body and also breaks down bile acids and some hormones and neurotransmitters.

This excellent side dish supports gut and liver health and is a great addition to any winter detox or post-holiday cleansing diet. I added a little ghee for richness, but olive oil, coconut oil, or flax oil could be incorporated here if you prefer.


1 pound sunchokes (also known as Jerusalem artichokes)
1 small head cauliflower
1 cup water
1 steamer basket
sea salt and pepper, to taste
(optional: 1-2 tbsp. ghee, butter, or non-dairy substitute)


  1. Scrub sunchokes with a stiff brush under water to remove any soil. Leave the skins on, as they contain fiber and beneficial antioxidants.
    Cut the cauliflower into large chunks.
  2. Pour water into the bottom of the instant pot. Add the steamer basket and then layer the sunchokes in the basket. Add the cauliflower on top.
  3. Turn on the Instant Pot and set to Manual for 8 minutes. Let the InstantPot release pressure naturally.
  4. Remove sunchokes and cauliflower and place in a Vitamix or food processor. Pulse on low to mix, adding hot water if needed to thin the mix. If using butter (or a substitute) add it here, as the solid fat will melt quickly and incorporate into the fautatoes well. Add salt and pepper and pulse once more, then remove and pour into a bowl.

No Instant pot?

Steam sunchokes on the stove for about 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower florets and continue steaming until cauliflower is very tender. Proceed with Step 4.

Serves 4-6.


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Abrams S. Griffin I. Abstract number 821:Calcium absorption is increased in adolescent girls receiving enriched inulin. Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition. 2000; 31: s210.

De Preter, V., Joossens, M., Ballet, V., Shkedy, Z., Rutgeerts, P., Vermeire, S., & Verbeke, K. (2013). Metabolic profiling of the impact of oligofructose-enriched inulin in Crohn’s disease patients: a double-blinded randomized controlled trial. Clinical and translational gastroenterology, 4(1), e30.

Van den Heuvel EG; et al.: Nondigestible oligosaccharides do not interfere with calcium and nonheme-iron absorption in young, healthy men. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 1998 Mar, 67:3, 445-51.

Paleo Vegan Gobi Manchurian

Oh, cauliflower! Is there anything you can’t do?


My first taste of Gobi Manchurian was a handful of years ago from Indian Food takeout in Portland. I was blown away by the complexity of taste and texture in these little nuggets of fried cauliflower and knew I had to make it myself. Upon exploration, I discovered it was breaded and fried, so I wanted to create a recipe that was more aligned with my eating style. I took to Pinterest, grabbed a couple recipes, and sat on the idea over the next four years but never forgot that dish.

Fast forward to last month, when I found myself overloaded with cauliflower due to a shopping snafu. I had already made Buffalo Cauliflower and Cauliflower rice, so decided this was going to be the moment that I put my procrastination abilities to fine use; I was going to avoid studying by trying to recreate Gobi Manchurian!

Gobi Manchurian is the result of the Chinese influence on Indian food (yeah, I didn’t know that happened either, although it is rumored to be in only one small area of India) and it is definitely the case of two great tastes tasting great together. Traditionally, cauliflower is dipped into a spiced batter and then deep fried, but I opted to bake it instead.

Here’s the recipe I came up with:

Paleo Gobi Manchurian


Cauliflower Nuggets

  • 1 cup cassava flour (can sub GF flour blend if not paleo)
  • 1/4 tsp white pepper
  • 1 tsp. powdered ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. powdered garlic
  • 1.5 cups water*
  • 1 tbsp. coconut aminos
  • 1 tbsp. oil
  • 1 head cauliflower, chopped into bite-sized florets


  • 2-3 tbsp. sesame oil (let your taste guide you)
  • 1 tbsp. grated ginger
  • 1 large clove garlic, crushed
  • 1-2 tbsp. hot sauce (I used sriracha)
  • 2 tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp. coconut aminos
  • 1 -2 tsp. honey
  • 1 jalapeño or thai chile, diced
  • 1/2 cup onion, diced
  • 2 scallions
  • 1/4 – 1/2 cup cilantro, chopped

*less water may be needed if using an alternate flour


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F/ 200 degrees C.

In a medium mixing bowl, add cassava flour, pepper, garlic and ginger. Mix to combine well. Drizzle coconut aminos and oil over mix, then add water slowly, mixing it in until the consistency is like thick pancake batter. Coat the cauliflower with the batter, and set the cauliflower on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a well-oiled baking sheet.

Roast cauliflower for 20 minutes, turning once to brown on all sides.

While roasting, make sauce.

Mix sesame oil, ginger, garlic, hot sauce, tomato paste, vinegar, honey, and coconut aminos in a blender and blend to combine thoroughly and more finely dice the garlic and ginger. Saute the onion and chili over medium high heat with a dash of oil and about 2-4 tbsp. water to ‘steam saute’ until the onion is translucent. Add the sauce and remove from heat.

When browned, remove cauliflower nuggets from oven and let cool slightly. Toss in the sauce until well coated, and then fold in diced scallions and cilantro.
Serves 4.



Paleo Buffalo Cauliflower (Gluten-free, Dairy-free)

Serves 4


1 head cauliflower, torn into bite-size pieces
1 cup cassava flour
~ 1 cup water
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. salt
2/3 cup hot sauce

Preheat oven to 450F.

In a medium-sized bowl, gently whisk together cassava flour, water, garlic powder and salt. You may need to add more water to get a dippable consistency; aim for something resembling thick pancake batter.

Roll cauliflower into the batter a few pieces at a time, making sure to coat each piece completely. I use my hands for this to ensure a nice, even coat is applied to each piece. Place the battered cauliflower on a parchment paper lined baking sheet, or use a silicon mat for a non-stick surface. Bake for approximately 15 minutes, tossing halfway through.

In the meantime, add the hot sauce in a large bowl. When cauliflower is done, remove it from the oven and gently toss it in the hot sauce mixture until all pieces are well coated. Return the cauliflower to the baking sheet and bake an additional 15-20 minutes or until slightly crispy.
Resist temptation and let the cauliflower cool for 15 minutes before serving, lest you burn your tongue and expose your raw tongue flesh to scalding capsaicin. Serve with your favorite dairy-free creamy dip or dressing (Tessame’s Creamy Ranch is delightful!)

Mediterranean Frittata from Prep Dish

This January, as part of leveling up my healthy habits, I started subscribing to Prep Dish. Since I’ve been in grad school I have found that getting well-rounded meals to the table reliably has become much harder, especially during finals! Prep Dish offers paleo and gluten-free, dairy-optional menu plans that are heavy in veg and family-friendly. Since starting, I’ve been able to become a food prep pro and have taken a huge mental load off of choosing new recipes and figuring out my grocery list. Allison has masterfully assembled the menu for the week, organized the shopping list for me, and given clear, concise instructions to batch prep 4 dinners, a salad, snack, breakfast, and dessert for the week in just one afternoon. With practice I’ve been able to reduce my weekend prep time and have either heat and eat meals or meals which take about 30 min to cook all prepped and ready to go. Each menu serves a family of 4, so our family of 2.5 has leftovers for lunch that keep us through the entire week as well, so this really takes a lot of meal planning logistics off the table for me.

When you eat vegetables in the morning, I feel like celebrating!

Some of my favorite recipes I’ve tried this year are the Lamb Kofka w/ Tahini Sauce, Paleo Snickerdoodles, Cider Cream Scallops over Mashed Cauliflower (which I’ve made multiple times), Chicken w/ Peanut Dipping Sauce, Sesame Broccoli & Brown Rice, Paprika Roasted Chicken w/ Trio of Roasted Vegetables, Apricot-Glazed Chicken Thighs w/ Broccoli & Sweet Potatoes and lots more. Nearly every week has at least one “home run” recipe that I can add to my repertoire of tried and true favorites. Each Friday I get my instructions emailed to me, so I can do my shopping that night after work or on Saturday for Sunday prep.

This week’s breakfast is a Mediterranean Frittata that is so loaded with veg that each slice has 1.5 servings of vegetables. This makes me SO HAPPY, because getting veggies in the morning is quite a challenge for lots of people. This frittata has a lot of flavor and is a filling way to get started in the morning. Make it on a Sunday and enjoy it for the next few days! Serve it for Brunch on the weekends! Special thanks to Allison Schaaf, creator of this recipe, for permission to repost it here. If you are ready to take hours of time back in your week spent planning your meals, be sure to check out Prep Dish. 

Mediterranean Frittata

by Allison Schaaf, MS, RD, LD of Prep Dish

Makes 8 servings

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 14 oz. canned or frozen artichoke hearts, thawed or drained
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes
  • 1 tsp olive or coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp. Herbes de Provence
  • 1/2 cup diced Kalamata olives
  • 5 oz baby spinach
  • 8 eggs
  • 4 oz feta (optional; omit for paleo/dairy-free)

Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C).
Dice artichoke hearts and add to diced onion and garlic in a glass bowl. Half cherry tomatoes and add to the bowl.
Add 1 tsp olive oil or coconut oil in a deep skillet on medium high heat. Add onion, garlic, artichoke hearts, tomatoes, herbes de provence and salt and pepper to taste to the skillet. Sauté for 6-8 minutes, allowing the moisture to evaporate. Add spinach and olives and cook 2-3 minutes more until spinach wilts significantly. Return to the bowl to cool.
Crack 8 eggs into a large bowl and whisk until well mixed. Stir in cooled vegetables, adding 4 oz feta if desired. Place into an oiled 9″ by 9″ dish or pie pan and bake at 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes or until center is firm.

Sooo tasty!

Zoodles with Peanut Lime Vinaigrette (Vegan and Paleo Options)

This peanut lime vinaigrette is an adaptation from a recipe recommended to me by a member of the VIBRANCE Village of Health on Facebook. The lime lightens up the sauce a lot and, unlike a traditional peanut sauce, this one does not feel heavy and comforting for winter, but rather light and refreshing and best enjoyed on hot summer evenings or days when you are pining for hot summer evenings. Having discovered it in dreary, grey January, it’s been a culinary reminder of days to come.

If you’ve not spiralized I highly recommend it! It’s a fun way to get extra veggies in (think carrots, zucchinis, yams, and more) and kids enjoy being part of the spiralizing process, which then has them more invested in eating the outcome. I have a Paderno I picked up 5 years ago that is still going strong but would now totally choose this Spiralizer on Amazon because it comes with extra blades and recipe ebooks.

If you’re like 87% of Americans and struggling to get enough veggies in, our totally free challenge, 30 Days of Glorious Greens is the perfect challenge for you. Offered only once year in March, this program dives into best practices to get greens in, delicious recipes, and fascinating science behind the glory that that is the humble green. You can sign up below the recipe!

Zoodles with Peanut Lime Vinaigrette


Makes 1 cup of sauce and 4-6 servings of zoodles.


3 zucchini

1/2 cup shredded carrot

1/4 cup chopped scallions

For Sauce:

3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp. tightly packed cilantro
2 tbsp. peanut butter (use sunbutter or almond butter for paleo adaptation)
3 tbsp. lime juice
1 tbsp + 1/2 tsp coconut aminos

1/4 tsp. fish sauce (omit for vegans)
1 tbsp.rice vinegar
1 tbsp. ginger, peeled and chopped
1/4 cup coconut milk
2 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp sriracha, or more to taste
1/4 cup avocado or mild olive oil


  • Add chopped nuts, sprouts and extra cilantro on top before digging in.
  • Add 1.5 cups diced chicken, shrimp or tofu to make it a meal


  1. Spiralize zucchini (I use the leftover ‘core’ as a dip for hummus)
  2. In a blender, puree all sauce ingredients except the oil.
    While the blender is running, add oil in a thin stream until dressing is emulsified.
  3. Mix zucchini with carrots and scallions. Add the dressing and toss well to mix thoroughly. Best enjoyed within 24 hours, but will last 2-3 days (note that over time the zucchini will lose moisture and become more dense, but still delicious).


Recipes like this, and much more, are part of the 30 Days of Glorious Greens Challenge. Sign up now to reserve your seat and receive my best, most delicious tips and practices to keep vegetable intake high. Registration is open now and we begin March 4th!

Lacto-Fermented Limey Onions

If you’ve ever had legit Mexican food these will taste familiar. It’s common to soak onions in lime and water to reduce the pungency of them before adding them to tostadas, tacos, and other South of the Border street food. I took the traditional method a step further by adding salt and letting the onions ferment on the countertop for 5 days. The result is nothing short of marvelous, and adds a bright dash of flavor to chicken soup, pozole, tacos, guacamole, sandwiches, and anything else you enjoy onions on while delivering billions of happy probiotic bacteria. 


2 red onions, peeled and thinly sliced into half moons

Juice and zest of 1 lime

1/2 lime, thinly sliced into rounds

4 cups water

2 tbsp. salt


Dissolve salt into water. Layer the bottom of a quart canning jar with lime rounds. Mix lemon juice and zest with onions. Add onions to the quart jar, making sure all juices are included. Top with salt water. Layer an additional layer of lime slices on top of the jar, so they stick out just above the lip of the jar.
Seal the jar. It’s okay (and good) if the water sills out over; this ensures there is less oxygen in the jar.

Let sit in a warm dark place for 3-5 days, breaking the seal every 48 hours to release pressure.
Once the onions are to your liking, refrigerate them to prevent further fermentation.

It’s too bloody hot to cook!

I am melting.


Growing up, I was the kid who would be outside sunbathing when it was ninety degrees. This only happened on the rare occasion we were out of Alaska in the summer. I thrived in the heat and when I moved to Washington I’d hop on my bike the 1-2 days of the year we reached triple digits and ride the Burke Gilman trail for fun.
One day in 2007 I went to an Ayurvedic Doctor in NYC to have my doshas balanced. He prescribed some herbs that so radically changed my chemistry that I no longer enjoy the heat. Quite the opposite.

Now, heat throws me out of balance – and quickly. My Pitta dosha gets all fired up and I get cranky, lethargic, and antisocial. My body and brains hut down just as they used to do in the extreme cold of Alaska. The last thing I want to do is cook. I’d rather drink root beer floats all day and sit in a tub of ice.

That said, I’m pretty committed to eating well, and I can’t let these two weeks of hellfire slow me down. I’ve enjoyed a lovely Kale Caesar and a delicious Hibiscus Cooler the last few days and wanted to share them here.

Kale Caesar Salad

  • 10 oz. chopped Lacinato kale (I used a pre-cut, washed bag from Trader Joe’s)
  • 2 TB Nutritional Yeast
  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 1 large clove garlic, crushed
  • 2 tsp. dijon
  • 1/4 tsp. sea salt
  • 2 TB apple cider vinegar
  • 1 TB lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. coconut aminos (or tamari if not soy sensitive)
  • 1 tsp. vegan worchestershire sauce
  • 1/2 tsp. sesame oil

Remove stems from washed kale and chop or tear into bite sized pieces. Place all remaining ingredients into a blender or food process and puree until smooth. Thin with water to desired consistency. Pour dressing onto salad and massage roughly with your hands. This will bruise the kale leaves and soften them a bit. Add additional ingredients (referenced above) if desired. Serves 4 as a side, 2 as an entree salad.

Hibiscus Cooler

  • 1/2 cup dried Hibiscus Flowers (or 4 hibiscus tea bags)
  • 1/2 cup fresh mint leaves
  • 4 cups boiling water
  • 2 cups apple juice
  • 2 cups cold water
  • Ice cubes, for serving
  • Mint sprigs (optional)
  1. In a large heatproof pitcher, combine hibiscus flowers, mint leaves, and boiling water; steep 10 minutes. Discard tea bags and mint. Add apple juice and cold water; refrigerate until cold. Serve over ice with sprigs of fresh mint. Serves 4.