pumpkin spice smoothie

Because fall.

I feel like I've been waiting forever to post this one! Now that it's officially fall I will officially admit to being a bit basic (okay a lot basic) and completely excited about all the pumpkin items this season brings around.

I've never been big on coffee. Aside from a brief stint in high school when drinking a latte seemed like the coolest thing in the world, there's something about the taste that just doesn't appeal to me.

So instead of a pumpkin spice latte, I took the flavors and transformed them into a pumpkin spice smoothie. While not only delicious, drinking it also gives you the added benefit of being a little less basic than your friends who are running off to Starbucks the second their seasonal cups appear.

Ingredients (serves 1):
- 1/2 cup pumpkin puree (make sure to get pure pumpkin and not pumpkin pie mix)
- 1 frozen banana (if using fresh just add some ice cubes to make it cold)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1/2 cup coconut milk
- Coconut whipped cream (scroll to the bottom here for the recipe)
- Sprinkle of brown sugar for garnish (optional)

1. Add pumpkin through coconut milk to a blender and whiz until smooth. Top with coconut whipped cream and brown sugar.

wicked cool nuts X sprinkles & saturdays

It's no secret I'm a fan of snacking.

Just check out here, here, and here if you don't believe me. So when Wicked Cool Nuts approached me to try some of their treats I was completely on board. Although they carry the ever popular kale chip (maple pepper kale chip to be exact), it was their tomato chips that I couldn't wait to get my hands on.

Whether it be in soups, salads, pastas, or sandwiches tomatoes are one of my all time favorite foods to eat and cook with. They're extremely versatile and bring such a bright, fresh taste to every meal, so I was curious what they would taste like dehydrated as chips.

LA times recently wrote an article about the trend of dehydrating treats among chefs in their restaurants. The decidedly unsexy dehydrator is becoming a kitchen counter staple right next to the coveted Vitamix blender and Magimix food processor, and after trying these Pesto Tomato chips from Wicked Cool Nuts I couldn't be a bigger proponent of the new trend.

These thin, delicate tomato slices were covered in just the right amount of pesto that was reminiscent of an Italian pasta dish or slice of bruschetta, while still being a light and healthy snack.

The best part about all the treats I tried from Wicked Cool Nuts was that they tasted completely homemade with high quality ingredients. It seriously was like they were just dropped off by a friend or family member (who really knows their way around the kitchen).

Move over kale chips, tomato chips are here.

black rice bowl with roasted veggies & coconut basil cream

There's something about this season that just makes me crave big bowls of nurturing grains.

I'm loving quinoa, barley, farro, and especially rice right now. The black rice in this bowl is layered with nutritional yeast roasted kale and broccoli and then drizzled with a super simple coconut and basil cream sauce.

I first posted a recipe for nutritional yeast roasted broccoli as a side dish last winter and it was such a huge success among you all that I've been thinking of ways to incorporate it into a main. Nutritional yeast is a great way to get a cheesy flavor while still using a completely plant-based product. Kale also roasts amazingly with the same technique and comes out with a delicious cheesy crust.

The textures of the crispy veggies and al dente rice are brought together at the end by the creamy coconut and basil sauce that is made with just two ingredients and sliced avocado. The result is a new favorite dish for the season.

Ingredients (serves 3-4): 
- 1 cup black or wild rice
- 12 oz broccoli florets (or 1 full TJ's bag)
- 3 large handfuls kale (or about half a bunch), steams and spines removed
- 2 1/2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast, divided
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 3/4 cup full fat coconut milk
- 1 handful basil
- 1 avocado

1. Cook rice according to packaged instructions.

2. While rice is cooking, preheat oven to 425 degrees. Add broccoli to one half of a large baking sheet and kale to the other half. Drizzle both with 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil. Massage the oil into the kale a bit with your hands before sprinkling both veggies with 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast. Stir veggies around a bit so they get an even coating before drizzling on remaining tablespoon olive oil and sprinkling on remaining tablespoon nutritional yeast. Finish with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Bake for about 15-20 minutes until crispy, checking on it midway to see if the kale side needs to be stirred, do not stir the broccoli side midway.

3. While the veggies are roasting, prepare your sauce by adding the coconut milk, basil, salt, and pepper to a blender and whizzing until smooth.

4. Divide rice between bowls, then top with veggies, a drizzle of sauce, and sliced avocado.

vegan tuck box X sprinkles & saturdays

I'm about to admit something slightly embarrassing.

When it comes to my favorite activities...snacking is up there.

Okay. Okay. It might not be the most active or productive or social thing to do with your time. But really, at the end of a long day what is better than putting on a good movie and curling up on the couch will a bowl of your favorite snack? In fact, I've had many a night when a bowl of popcorn becomes my dinner, and I'm not mad at it.

As a snack connoisseur, I've tried several different snack box subscriptions but honestly didn't come across any I loved until I found Vegan Tuck Box.

Why do I love it so much?

First and foremost, I think a common issue when it comes to any kind of monthly subscription box is disappointment at the size of the products inside. All too often, it feels like you just paid upwards of $30 for a box full of small samples usually given out for free.

Vegan Tuck Box products are full size, people. You won't find any single serve peanut butter packets or miniature granola bars in here. My box contained 10 full-sized items including a chocolate bar, bag of chips, power bar, and bag of cookies.

What's more is Vegan Tuck Box is based in the UK (although they ship all over the world) so these aren't your run of the mill boring snacks either, they're all new brands/companies and different treats you can't find here in the US.

A few of my favorite snacks this month...

The Sticky Toffee pudding mug cake. I love a good mug cake, but what made this one so fun was that it transported me right back to London, where I studied abroad. Sticky Toffee Pudding isn't a common dessert here in the states, but it's a staple in the UK and it's so freaking delicious, it really should make its way over the pond more often.

Another favorite of mine was the Salted Caramel Wholefood Chocolate bar. I'm not even a huge caramel fan, but this chocolate bar was the creamiest, most divine little piece of chocolate heaven I've tasted in as long as I can remember. I was shocked to see that it was only made with four ingredients: cacao butter, cashews, coconut, and pink salt.

How much is it?

It's only $22 a month for the Ultimate Box that includes 10-13 full-sized treats. You can also opt for the Variety Box that's 5-8 treats for only $12 a month, and either subscription can be cancelled anytime. And on top of that, if you enter BLOG20 at checkout you'll receive 20% off your first box!

Vegan Tuck box also donates 10 cents for each box they sell to charity and gives reward points that you can save up to get a free one. That's seriously so many reasons to feel good about treating yourself to this little surprise gift each month to look forward to in the mail.

Where do I get it?

Head over here - and don't forget to enter BLOG20 for 20% off your order!

fall favorites

Fall is coming!

{pictured above: Kale & Roasted Sweet Potato Salad with Orange Tahini Dressing}

So even though it isn't technically fall until next Thursday. And even though it might still be in the 90s for most of the country...it's September, and there's no denying the crisp excitement that autumn is almost here moving through the air.

From breakfast bars for back to school to warming soups and comforting side dishes, I had so much fun going through all of my recipes to pick out these fall favorites. This year, I'm really looking forward to creating some Halloween goodies, playing with classic fall produce like pumpkin, Brussels sprouts, and pomegranate, and planning my perfect Thanksgiving meal.

I'd love to know what kind of recipes you'd like to see on the blog this fall! More soups? Decadent desserts? Pasta? Lots of apples? Tons of pumpkin? Cozy breakfasts? Colorful salads? Let me know what you'd like to see!

Back to School Breakfast Bars...

Chia-Oat Power Breakfast Bars

Cozy Soups...

Healing Miso Soba Noodle Soup

Simple & Easy Lentil Soup

Creamy Tomato Basil & Rice Soup

Comforting Dinners...

The Best Baked Mac & Cheese

Pan Toasted Balsamic Mushroom Gnocchi

Rustic Cherry Tomato & Kale Bread Pudding

Perfect Sides...

Roasted Broccoli with Nutritional Yeast

Cheesy Better-than-Potatoes Cauliflower Puree

The Best Garlic Bread

Sun-Dried Tomato & Walnut Dip

Fall... I'm ready for you!

early fall berry parfait with salted graham cracker crumble

Holy yum, you guys.

But seriously. This is so freaking good.

Despite the fact that this blog may be called Sprinkles & Saturdays, I'm not a huge dessert person. Nine times out of ten, I'll choose an appetizer over dessert without a missing a beat. But every once in a while, a really divine, awe-inspiring dessert comes around that stops me in my tracks.

Just looking at this baby, you'll realize this is one of them.

Not only does this parfait have a diverse group of textures with the airy coconut cream, crumbly graham crackers, and juicy berries, it plays on hot and cold and salty and sweet. The warm sweet berries against the cool coconut cream makes the whole thing melt in your mouth while the salted graham cracker crumble adds the much needed savory component to cut through the sweetness of the fruit.

The salted graham cracker crumble in this parfait was inspired by this recipe from Bon Appetit with a few tweaks to make it entirely plant-based and a bit healthier, while still being the sweetest way to welcome fall.

Ingredients (Serves 4):
- 5 graham crackers, finely crunched
- 1/3 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 cup plus one tablespoon coconut sugar, divided
- 6 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
- 3 cups mixed berries, divided
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1 can coconut cream, refrigerated overnight*
- 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Fresh mint for garnish

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Pulse graham cracker crumbles, flour, salt, and 1/4 cup coconut sugar in a food processor until finely ground. Transfer to a medium bowl and add melted coconut oil; mix until a few large clumps form. Spread out crumble on a rimmed baking sheet and bake, shaking once, until golden, 12-15 minutes. Let cool.

2. Meanwhile heat 2 cups of berries, one tablespoon coconut sugar, lemon juice, and water in a small saucepan over medium high heat until boiling. Reduce to a simmer and cook another 3-5 minutes.

3. Open the can of coconut milk and scrap the cream off the top, reserving the liquid on the bottom for smoothies, etc. Place the cream in a large mixing bowl and beat with a mixer for a few seconds until smooth. Add powdered sugar and vanilla and beat until fluffy, about 5 minutes.

4. Divide warm berries among bowls and top with coconut cream, remaining 1 cup of fresh berries, graham cracker crumble, and fresh mint. 

*I've tested a bunch of different brands, and my favorite for coconut whipped cream is the Coconut Cream from Trader Joe's 

**If you make this recipe let me know! Leave a comment or tag #sprinklesandsaturdays on Instagram. I'd love to see what you come up with!

warm kale & black bean salad

There are few things I don't love about fall.

Fuzzy slippers, pumpkin everything, scarfs, all the best tv shows coming back. Honestly, everything about fall is just better than summer, but for San Francisco, our summer starts now. June through August the temperatures have been holding steady between the mid 60's and low 70's, just now is it creeping into the 80's and beyond, which historically continues through Halloween.

I created this salad to bridge our somewhat awkward transition from summer to fall. Ideally, I would be in full fall mode right now sipping chai tea lattes and hanging a fall foliage wreath on my door (I'm literally the most basic, I know), but instead I'm pulling out my floral dresses and throwing on my Ray Ban sunglasses.

That's why this dish is not quite a salad and not quite a warming bowl to snuggle up with. It's somewhere in between, capturing the best of both worlds. But no matter what season, this has become one of my favorite easy dinners to throw together at a moment's notice since you only need 7 ingredients and the whole thing can be ready in less than 10 minutes.

What's the weather been like where you're living? This salad is a must for any dinner table, whether it's been cooling down or heating up like here.

Ingredients (Serves 2-3):
For the Cashew Parmesan (makes a big batch):
- 1 cup roasted & salted cashews (do not use raw)
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- salt

- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 head kale, stems and ribs removed
- 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 6 dates, pitted and roughly chopped

1. To make the Cashew Parmesan: add all ingredients to a food processor and whiz until mostly smooth with some small cashew pieces remaining. Store in an air tight container in a cool, dry place for up to a month. 

2. Pour olive oil in a large pan over medium high heat. Add kale and cook for about 2 minutes, add black beans and cook for an additional 2 minutes.

3. Remove kale and black beans from heat and stir in dates. Divide between two bowls or plates and top with cashew Parmesan. Serve immediately.

**If you make this recipe let me know! Leave a comment or tag #sprinklesandsaturdays on Instagram. I'd love to see what you come up with!

creamy rosemary pasta

Yay, guys!

It's Thursday, which means it's almost Friday, which means it's almost Labor Day weekend! This year, I'll be heading up to Tahoe to spend the weekend celebrating a friend's birthday. We've got home cooked dinners, hikes, and days at the beach planned, which seems like the perfect summer send off.

Last weekend I was lucky enough to have another mini getaway as well. I went to Sea Ranch, which is north of Napa along the California coast, with my family. My sister and brother-in-law were visiting for the first time in over a year, and it was amazing to spend time with them.

Summer coming to an end got me thinking about this delicious rosemary white bean dip my mom makes as an appetizer for Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner. Not only is it a total crowd pleaser, it's super simple and only requires four ingredients. It's creamy, decadent texture gave me the idea that, with a few tweaks, it would make a delicious pasta sauce.

As it turned out, my instinct was spot on. You only need six ingredients for this recipe, and the result is a comforting but light pasta dish that's perfect for the transition from summer to fall.

I hope you all enjoy the long weekend with family and friends!

- 4 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 can white beans, drained and rinsed
- 5 spears rosemary, stems removed
- 1 small head broccoli florets, steamed
- 1 lb whole wheat penne

Cook penne in a large pot of boiling salted water according to package instructions until al dente. Meanwhile, add beans, rosemary and red wine vinegar to a food processor. Whiz together while slowly drizzling in olive oil until fully incorporated. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Combine pasta and broccoli in a large bowl before stirring in the white bean sauce. Serve immediately.

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