Vegan Protein Salad with Tahini Dressing

Vegan Protein Salad with Tahini Dressing

I packed this salad full of protein just for you. Contrary to popular belief, protein can be found in foods other than meat. This is the perfect dish if you’re trying to add a few meat-free options to your weekly rotation or if you just want to eat a damn good quinoa salad. Ugh, quinoa.. honestly, it’s not my favorite – the tiny little pieces get all up everywhere in your mouth and you have to swish with water to feel normal again. That’s a small price to pay for how tasty and good for you the stuff is – just eat it. So for the protein-packed salad: Quinoa, red lentils, chickpeas fried in chickpea flour (YES!) almonds, hemp seeds and nutritional yeast are all tossed together. Good stuff. You can eat the salad just like that or do as I did, smother and cover it in this insanely good dressing. Seriously, it’s like the best tahini dressing I’ve had – creamy, tangy, garlicky goodness.

Vegan Protein Salad with Tahini Dressing

Don’t forget the hemp seeds. I forgot them and had to photoshop them in.

  • Step 1

    Vegan Protein Salad with Tahini Dressing

    Toss chickpeas in chickpea flour. Kinda cannibalistic but really good.

  • Step 2

    Vegan Protein Salad with Tahini Dressing

    Toast chickpeas in a bit of your favorite high-heat oil. I used rice bran. When they are crispy and light brown, they’re done and delicious.

  • Step 3

    Vegan Protein Salad with Tahini Dressing

    Cook the lentils, quinoa and carrot until tender – about 15 to 20 minutes. I start with boiling water to speed the cooking time.

  • Step 4

    Vegan Protein Salad with Tahini Dressing

    This is the best dressing, ever. Orange juice (fresh squeezed if you’re an over-achiever), garlic, tahini, carrot and salt & pepper. Blend it up.

  • Step 5

    Vegan Protein Salad with Tahini Dressing

    Mix the cooked lentils and quinoa with nutritional yeast, garlic powder, grated onion, salt & pepper, a dash of olive oil and a squeeze of lemon juice.

Vegan Protein Salad with Tahini Dressing

This salad is good just by itself or on a lettuce boat or stuffed in a pita.

Vegan Protein Salad with Tahini Dressing

Print Recipe


Ingredients for the Salad 

1 cup of quinoa

1 cup of red lentils

1 can of chickpeas

1 cup of nutritional yeast

1 cup of hemp seeds

1 cup of almonds roughly chopped

1/2 a cup of chickpea flour

1/2 white or yellow onion (grated or finely chopped)

1 tablespoon garlic powder

juice of half a lemon

splash of olive oil

salt & pepper

 

Ingredients for the Dressing 

1/3 cup of orange juice

1 carrot (blanched, boiled or roasted until tender)

3 cloves of garlic

3 tablespoons tahini

salt and pepper to taste

 

Directions

Toss the chickpeas in chickpea flour to coat. Heat a pan with a dash of your favorite high-heat oil (I used rice bran) and fry the chickpeas until light brown and crispy. Add some salt and pepper to them too, garlic powder if you like. While the chickpeas are cooking, thoroughly rinse the lentils and quinoa. I cooked both the cup of lentils and the cup of quinoa together with the carrot in about 3 1/2 cups water. The lentils will cook a little faster. If you want to be fancy cook them separately. If you want to cook your quinoa to perfection, you can read more about how to do that here. After it’s cooked and drained, place the lentil / quinoa mix in a large bowl with a half of a finely chopped or grated onion, garlic powder, generous dash of olive oil, juice of half a lemon and generous salt and pepper. Next add the fried chickpeas, nutritional yeast and hemp seeds. Make the dressing, it’s so good! Combine all dressing ingredients together and blend in your food processor, blender or immersion blender, salt and pepper to taste.

 

Notes

If you want your dressing even creamier and with even more protein, blend in 2 tablespoons of silken tofu.

 

Photography by Paige Alisa 

Lemongrass Coconut Soup {Vegan}

Lemongrass Coconut Soup {Vegan}

This soup is really good and so easy to make. Loads of totally fresh flavors going on in here. Coconut milk, lemongrass, garlic and ginger are blended together until smooth and creamy. The toasted chili paste adds depth and a little heat. Zucchini and soba noodles make your belly happy and full. It all comes together in a snap and with no added oil you can eat a big bowl with a smile on your face. Yes and yum.

Lemongrass Coconut Soup {Vegan}
  • Step 1

    Lemongrass Coconut Soup {Vegan}

    Start by toasting a tablespoon of dry chili paste until fragrant.

  • Step 2

    Lemongrass Coconut Soup {Vegan}

    Blend coconut milk, lemongrass, ginger and garlic together.

  • Step 3

    Lemongrass Coconut Soup {Vegan}

    Bring contents to a boil, then let simmer on low while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.

  • Step 4

    Lemongrass Coconut Soup {Vegan}

    Sauté the mushrooms in a dash of soy sauce and add them to the soup along with the zucchini noodles.

  • Step 5

    Lemongrass Coconut Soup {Vegan}

    Cook the soba noodles per package directions and add them to the soup.

Lemongrass Coconut Soup {Vegan}

Lemongrass Coconut Soup {Vegan}

Print Recipe


Ingredients for the Soup

2 cans of light coconut milk plus one can of water

2 zucchini

2 packs of soba noodles

2 cups of fresh mushrooms (one pack)

4 cloves of garlic

3 blades of lemongrass

2 handful thai basil or sweet basil

1 inch of ginger

1 tablespoon dry chili paste

1 tablespoon pepper flakes – if you like spice

a few dashes of soy sauce for sautéing mushrooms

salt and pepper to taste

 

Directions

Toast a tablespoon of dry chili paste on medium heat until fragrant. Blend 2 cans of light coconut milk with one can of water together with the lemongrass, garlic and ginger in your high speed blender. Pour contents into pot with chili paste and bring to a boil. Let simmer while you sauté the mushrooms in a few dashes of soy sauce. Salt soup to taste. Cut up the zucchini with a vegetable peeler or vegetable noodle maker. Cook the soba noodles la dente because you will add them to the hot soup. Add all the ingredients to the soup and serve with fresh thai basil.

 

Notes

If you don’t have a blender, use a food processor to form the lemongrass, garlic and ginger into a paste with a few dashes of coconut milk. Then mix that paste with the rest of the liquid. If you don’t have a blender or food processor, finely chop the ginger and garlic. Leave the lemongrass whole to just flavor the soup and remove the blades before serving.

 

Photography by Paige Alisa