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!


Kale Salad: Kale Yeah!

Are you trying to eat more Kale but the texture, color and taste are really throwing you off? Have you tried a range of recipes but still have not found the “right” one for you?  Well, we think that we may have found the “perfect” Kale recipe, one you will actually eat, enjoy and plan to make again.

We are enjoying it soo much, that we have given it a fun name: Kale Yeah!

The salad is basically Kale leafs tossed in yummy guacamole and WOW is it good! The recipe below is one we are making on a weekly basis, and we hope that you enjoy it too.  Feel free to use this as a general guideline and modify the salad as you wish. Sometimes we do not include the onions, (or add too many…eeks!) or we will add in some cooked vegetables to the Kale salad for the lunch box. We also LOVE to add toasted almonds or pumpkin seeds for some added crunch to the salad… the possibilities are endless, right??

You know the drill:  experiment, relax and enjoy!

 Kale Yeah! Salad

What you need:

  • ½ bag of Trader Joe’s Kale (depending on how many you need to feed)
  • 1 large avocado
  • 1-2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • Tbls of kosher salt
  • A splash of Apple Cider Vinegar (1 tablespoon)
  • Two cups of cherry tomatoes, halved
  • ¼ to ½ a red onion small diced (depending on your taste and the size of the onion)
  • 1/2 cup of shredded carrots (buy ready made from Trader Joe’s)
  • Optional: Nuts or toasted pumpkin seeds for crunch

What you do:

Cut the stems out of the kale. You only want to use the soft leafy parts of the kale. Cut any super large leafs in smaller pieces. We sorta “rough chop” the Kale, just so it is more bite-sized.

I like to heap the chopped Kale onto a pan to keep it from getting all over the counter(and floor etc..)

Set the kale aside. Wash the cherry tomatoes and cut them in half set them aside. Dice the onion set it aside. If you buy the shredded carrots from Trader Joes we recommend cutting the strands in half or thirds to make them easier to eat.

Dice the Red Onions as fine (small) as you can. You may want to sharpen your knife just before you start.

Now that all of your parts are ready,  it is time to have some fun.


1. Make the Avocado Dressing:

In a large bowl add the salt and the splash of Apple Cider Vinegar and Olive Oil. Cut the avocado in half, remove the pit, and add the avocado to the bowl. With both very clean hands dive right in and start mixing the salt, vinegar, olive oil and avocado together, mashing the avocado as you go.

The start of the Avocado Salad Dressing, Kale Yeah!

Once ingredients are mixed together add in the kale. The kale can be wily so start by pressing the kale down and into the avocado mixture. Kneed, rub, and massage the kale into the avocado until the avocado is lump-less and each kale leaf is nicely coated with the avocado dressing.

Now, add in the rest of your salad ingredients. First add  the carrots and the onions; massage, coat, and mix in the carrots and onions into the salad. When you are satisfied that they are nicely coated with the  avocado mixture, add in the tomatoes. Still using your hands lightly toss and mix the tomatoes into the salad. You only need to coat the tomatoes with the avocado mixture and blend them into the salad so be mindful not to smash or mash the tomatoes.

We recommend serving the salad with roasted almonds or pumpkin seeds for a protein, crunch, and color. But don’t worry even without the nuts this salad is delish.

The finished Kale Yeah! Salad

There are many reasons why we love this Kale Yeah! salad, but one that you might appreciate as well, is the fact that you can make this salad one day, and (if you make enough) you can eat it for lunch for 2 or 3 days!

Let us know what you think about our Kale Yeah! Salad. You can leave a comment below or on Facebook!

P.S. For those of you who have emailed asking about my knives, Let me just say that I LOVE this knife! I have used in exclusively since 2005 or 2006 and can’t say enough good things about it. It has a “grippy” handle to keep you steady when you cut, it is only 7 inches long (so not too big), and yet there is a deep blade to allow you to cut, chop and use the knife like those huge chef’s knives.  Click the link to read more about this knife 🙂

Vegetarian Thanksgiving Made Easy

Are you searching for some ideas to make an Easy Vegetarian Thanksgiving this year? Recently we were thinking about different ideas to make our meal a bit more  Vegan and Vegetarian -diet friendly this year.

Think about it… so much of Thanksgiving is about all these crazy-good side dishes and so many of them are vegetable based ~ including many yummy desserts, right.. 🙂

Some ideas to consider for an Easy  Vegetarian Thanksgiving:

  • mashed potatoes
  • baked sweet potatoes
  • Brussels sprouts roasted with nuts and cranberries
  • roasted turnips and parsnips (my family’s favorite)
  • rolls and butter
  • cranberry sauce

butternut squash, carrots, acorn squash…. the list could go on and on….

One easy idea is to just substitute Trader Joe’s Hearty Vegetable Stock for Chicken stock in many recipes… that would be a great and flavorful addition to mashed potatoes, soup or stuffing.

To keep is super easy check out the fresh and frozen sections of the store. Trader Joe’s has some delicious  side dishes that would be perfect for a vegetarian Thanksgiving…  Here I am thinking of the 4 cheese au gratin potatoes, or their new one that is a creamy potato and spinach combo (had a sample of that one last week- yummmooo).

Recently at Trader Joe’s we we talking (and sampling coffee and ginger biscotti pieces- YUM) and the friendly Trader Joe’s employees were talking about…. Tofurkey!

Once an item of legend… now the Tofurkey has arrived and is on the shelf at Trader Joe’s stores ~ At least the one that we shop at in Kansas City.  No one who was working  that day had ever tried this unusual item… but they noted that a LOT of customers were purchasing the faux birds.

So I thought I would mention this  just in case it might round out your Vegetarian Thanksgiving table.

Do you enjoy Tofurkey? What are you serving for your Easy Vegetarian Thanksgiving??

Share in the comments below or on Facebook …. have a GREAT DAY!

Vegan Thanksgiving Recipes

We have been receiving a LOT of emails (thanks everyone! ) from readers who are interested in some vegan Thanksgiving recipes that they can add to their collection. Now while neither of us are vegans or full time vegetarians for that matter, we did find some really nice websites that are full of delicious sounding and great looking vegan recipes that you can add to your menu for Thanksgiving or any meal really.

Vegan Dad


The V Word


Don’t you just LOVE the look of this blog? Great header!!

Like I said we are not vegans or even full time vegetarians for that matter, but we are heading in that direction… we are eating less and less meat and enjoying more salads, cooked and raw vegetables, nuts  and lovely fresh fruits (right now we are just enjoying those Honey Crisp apples- what about you?) I am glad that we checked out what was out on the internet for Vegan Thanksgiving Recipes as I am very happy with what we saw and I am planning to try many of them soon!

Are you planning a Vegan Thanksgiving? What are you making/ serving? Share below or on Facebook~ Thanks!