Ingredient: nutritional yeast

Recipe: Easy Spicy Vegan Caesar Salad

I had a lot of thoughts when we decided it was time to leave New York City, and one of them was: “But what am I going to do without my favorite salad?!” The second I first had Peacefood’s Spicy Unchicken Caesar Salad, I knew it was love. And that’s exactly why I made it my mission to create my own version I could eat anytime, anywhere.

Alright, let’s rewind for a sec. Before going vegan, I only ate Caesar salads because they were honestly the only kind of salad that tasted good to me. Yep, a true Midwesterner at heart. Getting that taste again—but honestly, an even better version—was kind of a dream come true. For one, it’s spicy. It’s also super creamy, flavorful, and is better for you than conventional store-bought Caesar dressings. It’s a win-win…win, win, win.

spicy vegan caesar salad

So, what’s all involved in making this salad? Well, Peacefood’s version includes crisp romaine lettuce, their famous homemade unchicken tenders, tempeh, red onion, croutons, and tomatoes. For this version, I decided to keep things simple and create a base you can play with a bit.

I try not to eat processed vegan food too often, but I wanted this recipe to have the full effect so I included two of my favorite vegan goodies that are generally super easy to find: Gardein’s Seven Grain Crispy Tenders and Lightlife Organic Fakin’ Bacon Tempeh Strips. If those brands aren’t available, don’t worry—any similar products will work. For when you want to be extra healthy, though, use some regular tempeh and baked tofu instead.

spicy vegan caesar salad

spicy vegan caesar salad

For the dressing, I remembered someone once told me vegan mayo makes a great base for Caesars, so I went with it and ended up with a version that I actually might like more than the original. Yeah, seriously. There’s just something about it: It’s fresh, has the perfect amount of heat, and adds so much flavor to a bowl of leaves.

spicy vegan caesar salad

This recipe is great on its own or with other veggies added in. And, good news: The dressing stays nice and fresh in the fridge. I usually keep it in a mason jar and give it a quick shake before I use it. It typically lasts for about 5 meals, or 5 days.

Ready to eat? Check out the recipe below. And if you try it out, tag me in your pictures on Instagram: @tehrene. I’d love to see what you think!

Print Recipe
Easy Spicy Vegan Caesar Salad
This spicy Caesar is creamy, filling, and brings the perfect amount of heat.
spicy vegan caesar salad
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Spicy Caesar Dressing
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Spicy Caesar Dressing
spicy vegan caesar salad
Instructions
  1. Add all dressing ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. Put in the refrigerator in an airtight container, like a mason jar, and make sure it's cold before using it. Or, stick it in the freezer for 10 minutes or so to chill it quickly for immediate use.
  2. Make the "chicken" tenders and tempeh according to directions. I prefer baking the tenders in the oven so they're extra crispy. I also always cut the tempeh up into small pieces, like shown in the picture above, before cooking: Just put them in a pan and sauté.
  3. Chop your romaine and toss in extra veggies, if you want them. Add the chicken tenders and tempeh on top. Drizzle on your chilled dressing and eat up!

Recipe: 4-Ingredient Lazy-Day Vegan Mac and Cheese

Before going vegan, I was the queen of mac and cheese. And I’m still happy to say nearly a year after going cheese-free, I’m still the queen of mac and cheese—just minus the actual cheese.

There are plenty of ways to make dairy-free mac and cheese—whether you’re using nuts or veggies—but most methods take up more time than I typically want to spend when I need to satisfy a serious, on-the-spot craving. That’s why this recipe I created on a whim one day when I was hangry is such a gem: It only requires four ingredients, can be made in just minutes, and is super creamy. What more could you want?

To make this 4-ingredient mac and cheese, you’ll just need soy milk, organic corn starch, nutritional yeast (which is jam-packed with vitamin B12—aka an amazing mood- and energy-booster), and some pasta. You can use whatever type of noodle your heart desires to make the dish, whether that’s actual macaroni or something totally different—like protein-packed fusilli made from quinoa flour, which just so happens to be what I had on hand.

vegan cheesy pasta

After rounding up your ingredients, all you need to do is cook up the noodles and make the sauce. Believe it or not, everything can be made in 5 or 6 minutes. Seriously.

vegan cheesy pasta

The best thing about this quick dish is that it’s great whether you’re vegan or not. If you don’t eat dairy, you have an easy option for lazy days—and if you typically eat dairy, it’s the perfect way to healthify one of your favorite comfort foods. Even my cheese-loving fiancé loves this meal, so that’s saying something.

Ready to eat? Check out the instructions below. And if you try it out, tag me in your pictures on Instagram: @tehrene. I’d love to see what you think!


Print Recipe
4-Ingredient Lazy-Day Vegan Mac and Cheese
A simple dairy-free mac and cheese recipe to make on days you want a no-fuss meal.
vegan cheesy pasta
Cook Time 7 minutes
Servings
Ingredients
Cook Time 7 minutes
Servings
Ingredients
vegan cheesy pasta
Instructions
  1. Start boiling water for pasta and cook according to directions.
  2. Mix nutritional yeast, soy milk, and corn starch together on medium to high heat, stirring constantly until sauce thickens, about 5 to 7 minutes.
  3. Drain pasta without rinsing. Put pasta in bowl and top with cheesy goodness, stirring everything together. Then eat up!