Yesterday was another batch cooking day. It takes a few hours and lots of dirty dishes but it saves me so much time later in the week. I love having things made ahead so we can easily reheat and eat. It feels so good to fuel our bodies with healthy yet delicious food. Not only is this food good for our bodies but plant based eating is good for the planet. That makes me happy!
I made the collage above and wrote up a big explanation of everything I made on Instagram and when I tried to post it – poof – it disappeared! Aaargh – I decided to make a blog post out of it instead. It’s just a lot more work to prep the photos for the blog and type up the descriptions and edit on a blog and I have become lazy about this. Truly my batch cooking posts are more valuable being on the blog as you the reader can find them and refer to them easier than trying to find them on Instagram or facebook. So this one is for you!
Every week I start by baking a sheet of organic potatoes – this week I had a bag of russet potatoes, sweet potatoes and Stokes purple sweet potatoes. The Stokes bake best at 350 degrees so I did all the potatoes at that temperature. In the convection oven I can bake 3 sheets of food at a time. Love that! We enjoy the sweet potatoes and Stokes in a variety of ways – one of which is as a dessert with a dusting of ground cinnamon and some freshly grated nutmeg.
Also on the menu this week these amazing Mediterranean Baked Sweet Potatoes – I just slice and reheat the sweet potatoes I have batched cooked in a non stick skillet. Skip the oil, salt and chili sauce in the recipe. Use homemade oil free hummus for the dressing. This is one of my favorite meals! Go ahead and double the dressing and the oven roasted garbanzo beans. You will want leftovers. I enjoyed this for lunch today after a nice long walk at the mall with my walking friends! I had some shopping to do after we finished our group walk which ended up getting me 16,756 steps! Not bad for a rainy day here in Northern California.
Chef AJ shows how to make “potato waffles” in one of her free cooking videos. They are so simple but delicious. Take warm or cold baked potatoes. They need to have the skin on and be on the small side so they can be pressed down in the waffle iron. About 8 minutes in my waffle iron is perfect. I use a Cuisinart non- stick waffle iron with removable plates for easy cleaning. Waffle potatoes can be topped with many different toppings. Taco Lentils and Donna’s Vegan Cheeze Sauce is scrumptious. Hummus, salsa, chili – top them with whatever floats your boat.
For the first time I tried this Chef AJ creation and now I wonder why I waited so long to indulge in this amazing meal. Take a couple warm potato waffles and top with no sugar added applesauce and a sprinkle of finely diced red onion. Oh my goodness this is incredible people. I would never have thought to put these ingredients together but it all works. You have to try it!
These are the most insanely delicious Brussels Sprouts ever! Chef AJ is a recipe genius when it comes to combining ingredients to season food without using sugar, oil and salt. Hence the term SOS free. You can see the recipe here Chef AJ’s Dijon Roasted Brussels Sprouts. They are yummy cold or reheated so feel free to make a huge batch of these as they won’t last long. Sometimes I will use half Brussels Sprouts and half butternut squash – love the flavor combination.
Risotto in the pressure cooker is so easy you won’t believe it! This recipe does use Arborio rice which is a white rice and not as healthy as brown rice but I only have this maybe once or twice a year so I don’t worry about it. This dish is such a scrumptious side dish or main dish. Serve it with a side of the Balsamic Dijon Roasted Brussels Sprouts, a veggie burger and a salad. This recipe is from the Great Vegetarian Cooking Under Pressure cookbook by Lorna Sass. A little freshly grated nutmeg is wonderful with this dish! I couldn’t find the exact recipe on line but this Risotto With Butternut Squash recipe is almost the same. Leave out the wine, oil, salt and cheese. I use thyme instead of sage – just a personal preference. Serve this along side some steamed greens, broccoli, green beans or Brussels sprouts or a batch of BBQ Lentil Loaf Muffins. This is plant based comfort food.
This was a new recipe for me and it’s so flavorful without being too spicy so kids and those who shy away from spicy meals will enjoy this. Although we like spicy food we still enjoyed this chili that if flavored with a variety of spices making it unique and a nice change of pace. Sweet Potato Lentil Chili comes from the PCRM website. I made just a couple changes, doubled the ground cumin and the black beans and made it in the pressure cooker for 10 minutes on high, manual pressure release. Be sure to add the lime juice at the end – it adds something special. Serve over brown rice or potatoes. This will go into our regular menu rotation. Yum yum!
How is the New Year going for you so far? It’s starting out pretty good for us. We are getting a lot of rain which we really need her in Northern California. I have been getting to see our granddaughter quite a bit which is really a treat. She is nine months old and changing daily. I am so grateful that they live nearby and welcome our involvement in her life. It truly takes a village to raise a child!
For the first time since adopting a whole food plant based diet I contracted a nasty head cold that really interfered with my exercise routine. Between that and the rain I haven’t had as many outdoor walks as I would like. When the weather isn’t too bad I still venture out and even manage to take baby Alma when I can as she enjoys getting outside too. Tom and I have walked at the mall as they open early for morning walkers and of course once a week I meet up with my plant based group for a mall or park walk. The time flies by when we walk as we are talking non-stop the entire time!
I highly recommend trying to find a group of people in your area that eat the same way you do that you can connect with in person. The sense of community is so important when you are eating differently from the majority of the world. My plant based friends and I “met” on line. We had all joined Chef AJ’s Ultimate Weight Loss Program which is a whole food plant based program for ultimate health. A great side affect to eating the healthiest diet on the planet is that you also lose weight and your body settles into a healthy weight. When we found out we lived nearby we started meeting once a month at Whole Foods to eat at the salad bar. We enjoyed each others company and started attending local vegan/plant based events together. Then we started to gather to walk once a week. Soon instead of meeting at Whole Foods we started hosting pot lucks at our homes. Our group is growing as more people search out eating a whole food plant based lifestyle and join the UWL group. There is strength in numbers!
Have you found anyone in your area that follows a whole food plant based diet that you can connect with?
Happy Healthy Living,
A Little Nutmeg Nugget: When I started this blog in January of 2010 I followed what I understood to be a healthy version of the standard American diet, ironically also known as the “SAD” diet. As interest in my own health and how it was affected by the food I ate evolved, I transitioned to a whole food plant based diet also known as “WFPB” diet. I have wrestled with the fact that this blog still contains all those posts and recipes from the SAD way of eating I have left behind. I no longer advocate for anyone to eat that way. At this time I am leaving those recipes and posts here. It is a record of my journey and how I came to follow a WFPB way of eating. It is my hope that those who still come here for those old recipes will be curious about what I am doing now. Perhaps they will dip their toes across the line as I did and try some plant based recipes and learn more about the health benefits.
Please feel free to leave me a comment or ask a question.
Have you found anyone in your area that follows a whole food plant based diet that you can connect with?
I love your blog. I think you have inspired me to batch cook, altho there is only myself to cook for. These dishes look great!
Hi Shirley – That’s great! I am only cooking for two but batch cooking frees me up from the kitchen. Plus since I freeze some of it we have lots of variety to choose from on a moments notice!
Happy healthy cooking.
Jody - Fit at 59
Always looks so amazing Tami! FEEL BETTER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Thanks for the encouragement to meet up with others who live this eating style. Anyone in the upstate area of SC?
In her video, AJ mentions that she cooks the potatoes in the microwave for her potato waffles, otherwise they turn out too dry. Do you find the potato waffles turn out just fine if baked, instead of microwaved?
I have had good luck making the waffle potatoes from my oven baked potatoes that are cold. Works fine for me – they don’t stick. The trick in my waffle iron is to press them down and then set the timer for 8-10 minutes and not opening it until the timer goes off – that way they get nice and crisp and don’t stick. Hope this helps! They are yummy.
You are welcome! Let me know how they turn out for you.
Is this the waffle maker you like?
That looks like an amazing appliance – this is the waffle maker I have that I like.
For now I just flatten the potatoes and crisp them in a cast iron skillet, but can’t wait to get a waffle maker. They really are good with applesauce! I also like ketchup diluted with some white balsamic.
That sounds delicious! Great ideas – thanks for sharing.
I use a panini press to flatten and crisp my potatoes.
It works great! I press it down as far as I can and set the timer for 8 minutes.
I use the hottest setting.
That is wonderful Christy!
I was looking for batch cooking plant based foods and found your youtube. We follow the Medical Medium life style and I was watching one of my old youtube channels batch cook SAD , but all homemade foods (she’s enjoyable to watch and inspires me in the batch cooking, but we needed plant based recipes. I eat a lot of salads, and low plant fats, low salt. Your channel’s going to save me a lot of time. I was cooking just about all day every day potatoes, rice, salads and cutting up fruit. This will save me time knowing I can make salads for all week. The no fat no nut based dressings sound good.
I am so glad you found my blog and YouTube channel. Batch cooking really saved my sanity! When I first adopted this lifestyle I was spending hours and hours in the kitchen everyday. It was exhausting to say the least. Batch cooking solved all my problems. Now this lifestyle seems so easy.