Tempeh Stuffed Peppers

by Lisa on Wednesday: Jul 24, 2013

The other night I had a craving for stuffed peppers, something I’ve rarely had and never made. But knowing that peppers are one of my favorite vegetables, I decided to get a little creative in the kitchen and the results were delicious!



  • 4 medium/large green peppers
  • 1 package of tempeh
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic
  • half of a large onion
  • 1/4 cup of breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 of a 15oz can of crushed tomatoes
  • 2-3 tablespoons of parmesan cheese

Optional Spices:

  • Dried basil
  • Paprika


1. Cut the tops off of each of the green peppers and scoop out all seeds. Trim off a little bit of the bottom of the peppers so they’ll stand up without falling over.

Hollowed Out Peppers

2. Prepare the tempeh, either by chopping it up finely or running it through a cheese grater, depending on how large you want the pieces to be. I went the chopping route for simplicity.
3. Dice the onion and throw it into a skillet along with the tempeh, along with 1-2 teaspoons each of paprika and basil, if using, and some salt and pepper.
4. Mince the garlic and add to the saute pan
5. Let the mixture cook until the tempeh just slightly starts to brown and the onions get a little soft: 6-8 minutes

Sauteing the tempeh and onions

6. Transfer the tempeh mixture into a large bowl. Add the crushed tomatoes and breadcrumbs and combine. If it’s looking a little too dry, add some more of the crushed tomatoes.
7. Scoop the tempeh mixture into each of the 4 peppers and place on a foil-lined square pan. Top with as much parmesan cheese as you like

Tempeh Stuffed Peppers

8. Cook at 375 degrees for around 50 minutes, until the peppers are tender.

After being cooked

9. Serve and enjoy! Top with additional leftover crushed tomatoes and parmesan, if desired.

My dinner

Soy chorizo tacos

by Lisa on Sunday: Jul 07, 2013

It’s been a long, tough week – so much so that this was the post I wanted to publish on Friday, but I just didn’t have the time to finish writing. Even so, I did join up with some Friday blog hops this week and they’re listed at the end. Sorry it’s 2 days late!

The reason things have been so hectic and crazy can all be traced back to one thing: work. Work has been insane, and I even had to sign on yesterday and work for 5 hours on a Saturday! As a result, I’ve only gotten in 2 workouts this week, but I’m trying to psych myself up for a third right after I post this post.

Recently, I’ve discovered a new (to me) food at Trader Joe’s, and I’ve had some fun experimenting with it…

Picture courtesy of whatsgoodattraderjoes.com

It’s soy chorizo!

I wasn’t sure what to expect, but when I saw it in the store, I knew it was something I wanted to try. I love big flavors, and I love spice, so I picked it up and threw it in the freezer for a few weeks, trying to figure out what I could do with it. Having never even tasted “real” chorizo, I didn’t know what kind of flavors I was in for.

One night a few weeks ago, while D was out (he sometimes gets a little freaked out by some of my food experiments, so I tend to break out the new and crazy ingredients when I’m alone), I decided to go for it. I opened up the package and started heating it up in a skillet, the same way you would with a ground meat. I didn’t add any oil – just a little salt and pepper – and as it started to heat up, I thought it smelled remarkably like taco meat. After a small taste, it was confirmed: I would make tacos!

It was incredibly easy and quick to make these (just the kind of recipe I like). Once the soy chorizo was cooked, I spooned it into two taco shells, topped with some diced tomatoes, shredded cheese and ate it with a little bit of sour cream.

Sorry for the rough phone pic! I have since gotten a better camera.

The soy chorizo was very spicy and very tasty. Also, I wasn’t quite prepared for how filling it would be. I almost couldn’t finish two small tacos and the leftover chorizo that I had heated up lasted me through at least 3 or 4 additional meals.

This is one dinner that I’ve added to my regular rotation in the kitchen.

young and restless

His and Hers Homemade Burrito Bowls

by Lisa on Friday: Jan 18, 2013

I don’t know about all of you, but I’m a huge fan of Chipotle and their legendary burrito bowls. I always get mine loaded up with rice, beans, fajita veggies, corn, sour cream, cheese, two kinds of salsa and a big scoop of guacamole. The only unfortunate thing is that it’s not super easy to get to Chipotle from where we live. It’s not exactly far, just in an inconvenient location with lots of crazy merges and crazy drivers. Thus, over the past few months, I’ve started making my own burrito bowls at home. It’s super easy and very flexible because you can throw in anything you have on hand that sounds delicious at the time.

Last night was the first time I’ve ever convinced D to join me in having a burrito bowl for dinner. Here’s what we did:

My base recipe for a vegetarian:
1. Saute some soy chorizo (or any other meat substitute of choice – but soy chorizo is very delicious!) until warmed through and slightly browned. I don’t usually add anything to it because it’s already so well spiced.
2. Add one serving of the cooked soy chorizo to a bowl while you assemble your other ingredients.
3. Sprinkle a generous helping of shredded cheese on top. I popped mine in the microwave for a few seconds here to help encourage some cheese melting action.
4. Top with some homemade guacamole (For 2 people, my guacamole includes 1 avocado, 1 clove of garlic, half of a tomato and some lime juice, salt and pepepper).
5. Add salsa
6. And a dollop of sour cream

Other great topping ideas: corn, black beans, lettuce, peppers, onions

For the non-vegetarian:
The only step that changes is #1. Instead of soy chorizo, D went with ground beef, sauteed with a little salt and pepper to taste. No oil added for the saute portion of the recipe, just a little cooking spray. D also opted to have a few tortilla chips crumbled on top for some crunch.

This meal is the perfect example of how a vegetarian and a non-vegetarian can have a dinner together without much extra effort. We both thoroughly enjoyed our meals – both were filling and satisfying.


Friday blog hopping!


young and restless

Pasta Primavera ala Lisa

by Lisa on Saturday: Aug 18, 2012

I came up with this concoction about two weeks ago when on a Saturday night, I had absolutely no idea what to eat and I didn’t want to give in to the take-out monster. I had this Laughing Cow cheese in the fridge for a while and had been thinking about doing some sort of creamy pasta dish. Here’s what I came up with!

Pasta Primavera ala Lisa


1 tomato
1 medium or 1/2 large green pepper
1 onion
4 cloves garlic (use 2-3 if you’re not a hardcore garlic lover like me!)
1/2 box of spaghetti
3 triangles of Laughing Cow cream cheese spread
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
1/2 cup skim or fat free milk

Pasta Primavera - vegetables


1. Chop the pepper, onion and tomato into thin, long, “matchstick” slices.
2. Spray the bottom of a saute pan with non-stick cooking spray and begin sauteing the pepper and onion until they begin to soften.

Pasta Primavera - cooking

3. At the same time, begin cooking the spaghetti, following the instructions on the box.

Spaghetti container

4. When the peppers and onions have softened enough, add the tomato and garlic, stirring occasionally to make sure the garlic doesn’t burn. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Pasta primavera - cooking 2

5. Add the 3 triangles of Laughing Cow cream cheese to the vegetable mixture and stir until they’re incorporated. Add the milk to thin out the sauce.

Pasta primavera - the cheese

6. When the spaghetti is done, set aside a cup-full of starchy pasta water and then drain and combine with the vegetable mixture

7. Stir until combined and then add the Parmesan cheese. If the sauce is still too thick, add a little bit of the reserved pasta water until the consistency is to your liking.

8. Serve it up! Feel free to add even more Parmesan on top.

Pasta Primavera - finished product

The dish was creamy without being overly loaded with fat, and I loved the different textures and flavors of the veggies. Let me know what you think!

Roasted brussel sprouts: a new favorite

by Lisa on Friday: Apr 06, 2012

This barely qualifies as a “recipe” because it’s so super simple, but it’s something I never tried doing until about 1 month ago and now I’m totally addicted. I love brussel sprouts anyway, but when you roast them in the oven… OMG, they become the best thing ever.

Here’s how I do them:

– 1 package of frozen brussel sprouts
– 1-2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
– salt and pepper


1. Preheat the oven to 425
2. Either use a large ziplock bag or the bag the brussel sprouts came in for this step: Add oil, salt and pepper to the bag and massage the brussel sprouts through the bag until they’re all coated
3. Spread out evenly on a baking sheet
4. Cook at 425 for 35 minutes

After 35 minutes at this temp, using my oven, the brussel sprouts get decently charred and crispy on the outside and extremely soft on the inside. You may need to make adjustments on the cook time if you like slightly less char or due to variations in ovens.

It doesn’t get much more simple than that! Sometimes when I get home from work and I want an “appetizer” before we’re even thinking about getting dinner started, I’ll just throw some of these in the oven. Being brussel sprouts, they’re very healthy so I don’t even feel guilty about it!

Back to Friday blog hopping!

young and restless

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