BBQ Garbanzo Beans: An Awesome Vegan Meal!

Are you ready for our latest obsession? (well, one of them actually…..) It is BBQ Garbanzo beans!

Now the really funny thing is that Kansas City is SUCH a BBQ town… We have a huge selection of BBQ restaurants, cook off events and the like. It is one of those “cheats” that I will do – as I enjoy all the smoky, rich, sweet sauce- Yummo!  So when I found this awesome idea I love that I still can enjoy a vegetarian/ vegan meal and still getting in my BBQ flavors in.

Introducing … BBQ Garbanzo Beans!

Now I found this fabulous recipe idea in this awesome book:

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I have had the book for quite a while, and then recently I was clearing out the clutter (information for another post….) and I was like Yeah! So I started flipping around and found this recipe (p.116) for BBQ Bowl.


We just had to try it.

It is an amazingly simple combo that I think you will LOVE and like so many other meals, this just gets better and better over the next few days after you make it. What we like to do is make a 3 can batch on Sunday and then eat it for lunch etc.. during the week. DElish!

What you need:

  • Garbanzo Beans
  • BBQ Sauce
  • Grated Parmesan Cheese (optional, but surprisingly good)

What you do:

This is the super- simple part. This is how we make it, slightly different from the directions in the recipe book:

1. Drain and rinse the beans and the pour into a large pan on the stove.  Add about 1/4 cup of your favorite BBQ sauce to the pan with about half that amount of water. Stir carefully until you have beans sitting in a thin BBQ sauce.

2.  Now turn on the heat to medium and bring to a gentle boil. Continue to cook for a few minutes until the beans are warm and the BBQ sauce starts to get thick again.

3. Serve with a sprinkle of grated Parmesan cheese, or add the cheese and allow to cool and then store in the refrigerator.

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BBQ Garbanzo beans, arugula salad and Sweet Potatoes- with lots of leftovers for work day lunches!

For serving suggestions we have served these with arugula salad greens and some chopped tomatoes. Another time we served it along side some quinoa.  It was also good with sweet potato fries (and extra BBQ sauce for dipping).

So give this interesting and surprising recipe a try… It makes a fantastic office lunch too!


Smoked Salmon Spread Made Easy

Smoked Salmon Spread made easy

One of my favorite weekend treats is to enjoy toasted bagels with cream cheese and smoked salmon. One way to keep it super simple, is to make some smoked salmon spread and have it ready for the morning munch.

Making Smoked Salmon Spread is actually a lot easier than you might think and it tastes MUCH better then the pre-made stuff. Give it a try this week!

Getting ready to mix it up!

Getting ready to mix it up!

What you need: 

  • Cream cheese (We like to use the Trader Joe’s whipped Cream Cheese)
  • Smoked Salmon- the small size package that is about 6oz (Use 1/2 the package, wrap well and freeze the other half for next time)
  • Chives 1-2 Tablespoons fresh (or to taste)
  • Fresh ground pepper
  • Optional: capers / lemon juice/ lemon zest

1. Take the salmon slices and carefully cut the pieces into long strips, and then cut the strips into 2 or 3 pieces. You are trying to chop up the salmon into small chunks.

2. Add the salmon, chives and fresh ground pepper into a medium bowl. Add the whipped cream cheese, and stir lightly until it is all combined. Stir in any optional ingredients at this point.

3. Spread the smoked salmon spread on toasted bagels and serve with sliced tomatoes and spinach or arugula leaves. Thinly sliced sweet onions would also be nice to add.


Finished Smoked Salmon Spread

Finished Smoked Salmon Spread

Breakfast with tomatoes and arugula

Breakfast with tomatoes and arugula– That was super easy, right?

Enjoy this super easy treat this weekend!

What did you think? Are you going to try making Smoked Salmon Spread ? Share your thoughts below or on Fb~ Thanks!




Easy Halloween Recipes for Kids

Are you searching for some easy to make (a bit goofy) and not too scary Halloween Recipes you can make with your kids? Well, we have the perfect book for you: Easy Halloween Recipes for Kids was just published this week, by us, your friends here at Living Trader Joe’s!

One of my favorite recipes in the book! 

This Kindle e-book contains 20 recipes for breakfast, sandwiches and snacks that you can make for and with  your kids this year. All the recipes are super short and the ingredients are from your local Trader Joe’s store. Best of all, there is a picture for each recipe of how we made it, to give you an idea of what we did…. then you can get creative and let your imagination run wild!!

Check it out today and let us know what you think….. below in the comments or on Facebook~ Thanks!



P.S. Don’t have a Kindle?? Don’t worry you can download the Kindle app for your phone, pad or computer and view the recipes in full color~ yeah! Here is the link to the Kindle For PC download:

Or grab your own Kindle here: