Easy Tofu and Vegetable Taco

This week is madness. All of the weeks are madness at the end of the semester. I am somewhere in between mental breakdown and denial about how much work I have to do. I think we all are.

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Life, especially in times of stress and madness, is all about the little victories. Like when Grey’s Anatomy comes on every Thursday. And when eating 2 tablespoons of yogurt doesn’t hurt my stomach.

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It’s also about listening to your needs. Like a pint of Ben & Jerry’s Half Baked while paper writing. No judgment, no shame, no regrets. Also not FODMAP-friendly, but hey. Neither is this much work to do or stress.

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Life is also all about delicious foods. And easy foods. And fuel to keep you going until midnight when you’re writing a major paper. I actually had this taco before I started the FODMAP-diet (and my current status is on and off because date night tomorrow is not going to entail worrying about FODMAP foods). This could easily be FODMAP-ized and is a “throw together” dinner that takes no brain power. Aka, my current mental status.

Easy Tofu and Vegetable Taco

1 tsp olive oil
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 whole wheat tortilla
1/4 package tofu, or about 1/3 c cubed
2 mini bell peppers, cubed
1/4 c diced red onions
1/3 c frozen edamame
Handful of spinach
Pinch of 8th World Wonder Spice
Pinch of ginger

1. Over medium heat, sauté tofu, bell peppers, and onion in olive oil in a sauté pan.
2. Add the lemon juice and spices, and continue to cook (and flip tofu) until the veggies are slightly softened and the tofu is slightly crispy on the outside.
3. When the vegetables are cooked to your liking, add in the spinach and edamame and cook until the spinach is slightly wilted.
4. Pour contents into a tortilla and nom.

Pumpkin Quinoa Stuffed Peppers

It’s begun.

quinoa pumpkin stuffed pepper 1

Pumpkin. Everything. Can we brainstorm about the endless possibilities? I have a whole bunch of pumpkin left that is screaming my name. And it’s not even October yet. Pie. Cocoa. Reese’s cups. Cookies. Muffins. Bread. Granola. Frosting. Frozen yogurt. Brownies. Smoothies. Soup..

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I’m also so pumped for fall. Hellooooo, big chunky sweaters and leggings and boots and tea and skinny jeans and dark nail polish and marshmallows and fires and blankets and so.many.great.things.

So, I keep my AC at 75°F – yes, as a vegetarian, I get cold at 74°F – but today my AC hasn’t turned on ONCE. It’s perfect. Hello, cheaper bills. Gotta love fall.

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And this? This fat, plump, stuffed pepper? Delicious. And quite filling. It pairs well with red wine. I’m doing another “make myself like red wine” project. This current bottle of red wine… not so good, though. Fish Eye’s Pinot Grigio? On point. Their Cabernet Sauvignon? Not a big fan. Probably a personal problem more than a company problem.

Pumpkin Quinoa Stuffed Peppers
Inspired by What Jew Wanna Eat

1/4 c uncooked quinoa
1 tsp olive oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 onion, finely chopped
1/4 c red wine
1/2 c spinach
1/4 c pureed pumpkin
2 tbsp milk
1/4 tsp dried oregano
1/8 tsp cinnamon
Pinch nutmeg
1/4 c fiesta blend shredded cheese + more for sprinkling
1 large bell pepper
2 tbsp Italian breadcrumbs

1. Cook quinoa according to directions.
2. Heat olive oil over medium heat in a medium-sized skillet. Add garlic directly into oil to allow flavor to infuse into garlic. Cook for 1-2 minutes, then add onions. Stir to coat the onions and garlic with olive oil.
3. After 3-4 minutes, add the red wine vinegar and reduce the heat to medium-low. Allow to cook for another 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally, then reduce to low.
4. Add the spinach, milk, pumpkin, oregano, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cheese to the skillet and stir until the cheese has melted and is well-combined. The wine will probably have completely soaked up, but the milk will allow for some creaminess and moisture.
5. Once the quinoa is done, add it into the skillet and stir to combine.
6. To prime the bell pepper, take a paring knife and run it around the top to take off the top and stem but still leaving the rest of the pepper intact. Stuff the pepper with the quinoa-pumpkin mixture.
7. Top the pepper with cheese and sprinkle the breadcrumbs on top.
8. Place the pepper, upright, in a small, oven-safe container (such as a Pyrex). Fill the bowl with water until about halfway full, careful not to get water inside the pepper. Bake for 30 minutes at 350°F.

Mexican Fiesta Salad

I’ve started on this “Super Healthy Kaylie” thing until graduation.

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And let me just tell you – working at a frozen yogurt shop makes that very difficult. Between the Reese cups, cookie dough, cake batter yogurt, and hot fudge, it is all I can do to not stuff my face.

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But. I am testing my will power. Which I didn’t think I had much of, but apparently I do. Win.

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This mexican fiesta salad totally falls under this healthy thing. And? It tastes amazing. Hello, lunch for the rest of week.

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PS: I’m pretty sure this needs to be in my closet. ASAP. Now, I already have too many clothes, but maybe if they made this in a workout tank top? Wouldn’t that be cute???

Mexican Fiesta Salad

Adapted slightly from Vegetarian Times

1 c mixed lettuce

1/2 avocado, chopped

1/4 c tomato, chopped

3 tbsp c corn

2 tbsp red onion, finely chopped

3 tbsp orange bell pepper, chopped

2-3 tbsp cilantro, finely chopped

2 tbsp plain Greek yogurt

2 tbsp salsa

Shredded cheddar cheese

1. Combine all.

Easy Veggie Lunch Wrap

Sometimes it’s the little things that make you feel accomplished.

Getting a better grade on a practice exam and putting a smiley sticker next to it. Remembering how to work the lawn mower after 5 months and mowing the [extremely overgrown] lawn. Crossing something off your to-do list.

This is one of those little things that ends in big results. This veggie wrap is quick and easy but oh-so-delicious. The yogurt spread gives it a nice cool summery taste while the tomato basil wrap is bursting with flavor.

Also? Sorry about the recent planet-drop-off. I have been completely submerged in biochemistry for the past week and a half. Exam? Friday. Will return soon.

Easy Veggie Lunch Wrap

1 tomato basil wrap
3 tbsp plain Greek yogurt
1 tbsp lemon juice
Pinch of dried dill
2 mini bell peppers or 1/4 of large bell pepper, chopped
1/2 tomato, chopped
1/2 avocado, chopped
Handful of spinach

1. Combine yogurt, lemon juice, and dill. Spread onto wrap.
2. Place vegetables in middle-side of wrap, then roll, folding bottom first to keep the veggies in.