Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Scrumptious Vegan Tacos

Picture and recipe by: Callen Rhoads

I came home today and was seriously tired after school and working out.  I did one of the “insanity” workouts with some girls from work and it seriously kicked my butt! When I got home I was super hungry and so was Jake. I didn’t feel like making anything that I had planned on making AND I wanted something with a lot of protein… I looked into my pantry and found Taco shells and decided that tacos it was!  I literally just threw this recipe together as I was making dinner and used what I had in my pantry and fridge. The recipe turned out AMAZING! Before completing dinner, Jake wasn’t too thrilled with me using tofu “hamburger” crumbles, but he was actually VERY pleased with how good everything was. He ended up eating four tacos….and some of the left over filling by itself. J
For this recipe I decided I would try tacos with rice in them and it was actually really filling and scrumptious!
**For this recipe you can make whatever rice you’d like. I suggest staying away from the parboiled stuff. To me, it takes icky and I don’t know if it would taste very good in this recipe. I used white Jasmine rice, but you could use a wild rice if you wanted something more nutty.

***On another note, for those of you with could easily lower (or omit) the cayenne and red pepper flakes and even take out the black beans. The kids won't even notice the difference in the "hamburger" crumbles. It's that good! (I fooled Jake with it the first time I made it!!...ha ha!)

(This recipe makes 4-6 nice sized servings…depending on how much you eat!)


1 cup of white jasmine rice

2  cups of vegetable broth for rice (or you can use water)

¼ cup vegetable broth for taco filling

Taco shells of your choice

1TBS of olive oil or coconut oil

1 cubanella  OR green bell pepper (diced)

1 large sweet onion, diced and divided in half

1 can of black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can of vegetarian refried beans (I used Taco bell, and it’s actually vegan!)

8oz of diced tomatoes (I had to use canned because we were out of fresh tomatoes at the house! Ah!!!)

½ package of Marjon Vegetarian (actually vegan) tofu hamburger crumbles

(Could use vegan taco seasoning if you didn’t want to make your own seasoning):
½-1 TBS of cayenne pepper
1/2- 1 TBS of Cumin
2         TBS of minced garlic
1/2 TBS of garlic powder
1-2 TBS of chili powder

1 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes


Spinach or other lettuce
Diced tomato (or some left over from the can you opened)

Taco bell hot sauce (Jake used this, I however didn’t think it needed it.)


First, make the rice according to the package directions. I used 1 cup of the white jasmine rice and 2 cups of vegetable broth instead of water to give it some flavor. I cooked mine in the microwave to save on time, but if you aren’t in a rush you could make it on the stove.

Next, add the olive oil to a large pan.  Sauté  half the onions and  all the bell pepper on medium high heat. Once the onions and peppers are softened and lightly browned on the edges add the hamburger crumbles. Cook for about 2-3 minutes. Add all the spices. Taste as you go along so you don’t add too much or too little for your taste.  Then add the can of black beans.  Now, slowly add a couple spoonfuls of refried beans at a time until the entire can has been emptied into the pan. Add vegetable broth (or water) as needed to help the refried beans mix with the other ingredients. Finally, add the tomatoes to your mixture.  (Add salt and pepper as needed)

Fill  your tacos with rice first, then your taco filling, fresh lettuce or spinach (if using), and finally with the fresh diced onions and some left over tomato.

Voila! Enjoy!



Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Easy Asian Slaw

Picture and recipe by: Callen Rhoads

I first found a similar asian slaw at Sam's club. It was all prepackaged and you just had to mix it all together.  After trying the prepacked slaw at Sam's, I decided to try and make my own. It seemed easy enough and it was so delicious! (I was seriously eating it every day for about two weeks! Ha!) That was about 6 months ago. Today I was at publix and started to crave it! Well, here is my version of easy asian slaw. I literally ate almost half of it for dinner tonight. Oops. ha ha.

BTW...this is a great healthy salad dish to bring to parties. Just thought I'd throw that in there! :)

Easy Asian Slaw

1 16oz package of shredded cabbage/coleslaw mix

1/4-1/2 cup Drew's Sesame Orange Dressing
(I found it by the natural dressings in Publix. However, Walmart has a store brand called, "Sesame Ginger Dressing" that is by the produce that is also Vegan).

1 Tbs Agave Syrup
(I used Raw Agave Syrup, but any kind will work. Omit this if using the walmart brand Sesame Ginger Dressing. It is sweet enough without the syrup)

1/2-1 cup La Choy Chow Mein Noodles

1/4 cup oven roasted sliced almonds
(I used the brand, "Almond Accents." They are by the produce too!)

Mix Together and Serve Immediately. It's that EASY!!!
If you want to prepare this overnight, make sure to omit the Chow Mein Noodles and Almonds and add those just before serving. :)

**If you noticed I didn't put exact measurements on most of the ingredients. That's because I just eye everything and taste as I go along so it's to my liking. I would suggest using the smaller amount first, then taste and add more if needed.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Stuffed Acorn Squash

Stuffed Acorn Squash (Picture and Recipe by: Callen Rhoads)

For this recipe I used the remainder of the rice from last nights simple veggies and wild rice recipe. I however, will give you the measurements so that you can make this recipe from case you didn't make the simple veggies and rice from the night before!

This recipe is one that Jake and I both absolutely love. This is a hearty meal that can be used as a main dish or side. It is very filling, very scrumptious,  but again v e r y healthy!

This recipe feeds 4. One half a squash is for each person. If you are a bigger eater, you may want to get one squash for each person. Myself and Jake only ate half a squash each, but now we have left overs for tomorrow night! Yay!


(For squash)
2 acorn squash
2 tbs of vegan margarine
salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder to sprinkle on top

(For Rice)
vegetable broth
(amount varies according to directions on rice packaging)
1 cup of wild rice
1/2 package of shitake mushrooms, diced
1 tbs finely diced garlic

(For Vegetable Mixture)
2 tbs of olive oil
1 stalk of broccoli (finely chopped)  or 1 cup chopped
1 small carrot finely chopped
1/2 cup onion finely diced
1 cup of fresh chopped parsley
1/2 cup finely diced zuchini
1/8 tsp turmeric
1/4 tsp of crushed red pepper flakes
salt and pepper to taste
1 tbs finely diced garlic

*diced tomato and parsley for garnish (optional)

For the Squash

To start, preheat your oven to 375 degrees.  Cut each Acorn Squash in half with a sharp knife. Be careful not to cut yourself and remember to use a cutting board.

I use a muffin tin instead of a cookie sheet to cook my squash. This way it is not rolling around and it cooks even.

Put 1/2 a Tbs of vegan margarine in the center of each squash half. I then sprinkled garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper on top.

Cook the squash for 30-40 minutes, or until tender with a fork.
Take the squash out of the oven, set aside, and let cool to the touch.

Put your squash in a muffin tin so it cooks evenly and doesn't roll around!
(Picture and idea by Callen Rhoads)

For the Rice:

1 cup of Lundberg's (or your favorite) wild rice. Cook the rice according to the package dircections. I put some diced up onion, garlic, and diced shitake mushroom in my rice for extra flavor. I also always use vegetable broth instead of water. To me, it tastes better. :)

For the Vegetable Mixture:

When the squash is done and cooling, heat a saute pan on medium high heat.
Add the olive oil and saute all the veggies (and garlic) at once until tender. Add the turmeric and pepper flakes while cooking.

Once the Rice is cooked add it to the vegetable mixture.

Once the squash is cool, scoop out all the squash, but be careful not to ruin the outer lining of the squash. The squash's shell will become a bowl to put the veggie/rice/squash mixture in.

Add the scooped out squash to the pan with the veggies and rice.  Mix together.

Fill each squash shell with the mixture.

You can garnish with parsley and tomato if you wish.


All the Veggies in my recipes are from Rhoads Produce in Englewood, FL!

Make sure to visit our website and remember to like us on facebook!

Facebook: Rhoads Produce

Simple Veggies and Wild Rice

Simple Veggies and Rice (Recipe and Photo by: Callen Rhoads)

This is a recipe that Jake asks for at least once a week. It's simple, easy, delicious, and healthy!

You can use whatever veggies you want to stir fry. I used whatever I had left over in the fridge. I made extra rice because I'm using half of it for the stuffed squash that I'm making tonight.

Here is the recipe:

2 TBS of Olive Oil
1 medium sweet onion ( half diced, half cut into thin slices)
1 red pepper
1 medium yellow squash
1 medium zuchini
1 carrot thinly sliced
4 cloves thinly diced garlic
1/2 bunch of broccoli
1 package shitake mushrooms, diced

vegetable broth (amount varies depending on how much rice you make)

salt, pepper to taste

1 cup wild rice, I use Lundberg's (picture below) 

Lundberg Wild Blend Rice (Available at most grocery stores)

For the Rice
**cook according to the package in a medium sauce pan with whatever desired amount of rice you'd like.

Half way through the cooking process, add the diced onion, mushroom, and 2 diced cloves of garlic.

For the Veggies

Heat the olive oil in a saute pan on medium heat. Add the remaining veggies to the pan.  Cook until tender. Add your desired amount of salt and pepper. You can also add other herbs if desired.

Let cool, plate, and enjoy! It's that easy!

Saturday, July 21, 2012

The Best Tofu Scramble...yes, TOFU!!!!

The Best Tofu Scramble with Smart "Bacon" (Picture by: Callen Rhoads)
I too used to be one of those people who would stick my nose up to tofu. In fact, until recently, I didn't know why people liked it so much.  But honestly, I think the biggest reason people think it's disgusting is because it hasn't been cooked properly or they just won't try it! All it is is ground up soy beans for heavens sake! It's not disgusting. It's healhier than the eggs or meat you normally eat...and trust me, this recipe will make you want more (tofu)!!!

This recipe WILL change your mind. It changed mine!. I can't wait for Jake to get home so he can try it as well.

Here is the recipe. Best Tofu Scramble

In the recipe it calls for "Tamari." You can use soy sauce instead. If you don't have "Nutritional  Yeast" you can omit it. If you want to know where to find nutritional yeast you can get it at most health food stores. It's in a bottle that looks like parmesean cheese. I got mine at Earth Origins in Port Charlotte (next to Office Depot). You can also use nutritional yeast in place of parmesean cheese and on your popcorn for a "cheesy" flavor.

I also made some "bacon" to go with my "eggs."

I used the brand, "Smart Bacon." You can get this at Publix or most health food stores. I've tried the tempeh "bacon" and did not like it at all. This brand is really good though!

To make your bacon taste more like bacon put a little salt and agave syrup on top of it after cooking it. It has more of a "maple" taste. Of course you could use brown sugar or real maple syrup as well.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

I love my husband...and Rhoads Produce :)

Fruits and Vegetables from Rhoads Produce in Englewood, FL
This is just one of the many reasons why I love my husband and his business. This basket is FILLED with veggies and fruit!  <3

Just thought I'd share. All of this produce is from Rhoads Produce in Englewood, FL

You can visit our site here: Rhoads Produce and Chainsaw Art



You can still drink coffee and drink vegan!

In case you didn't know, you can drink vegan coffee at Starbucks! Just ask for soy milk and no whip cream or drink black coffee if you're up to it. Beware of making your drink "light" though. Some of those syrups are NOT vegan. Also, I would like to add that products that say "low fat, reduced fat, etc."  are full of chemicals!!! If you're going to splurge, do it the most natural way you can!

Anyways, here is my favorite drink: A tall peppermint mocha frappacino with soy milk and no whip cream. It is pretty much amazing.

I don't get it all the time because who needs the extra calories? This drink is about 190 calories (according to

If you're wanting to make your coffee healthier at home you can add agave syrup instead of sugar and use your favorite plant based milk. My favorite milk is Silk's Vanilla Almond Milk! I use it on my cereal too! It is delicious!

Well anyways, good morning and have a great day!



Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Welcome with Spaghetti Squash!

I'm just starting this journey on the "Rhoads" to recipe blogging! If you're new to eating vegetarian, vegan, or just want to eat healthier by incorporating more veggies into your meals this is the blog for you!

This week is my first week of officially eating vegan only. I have made many vegan meals in the past since becoming a vegetarian two years ago. I absolutely LOVE cooking and cooking healthy! Honestly, I think food tastes better when you can enjoy it and know it's healthy for you!

This week I'm making a plethora of recipes and doing my best to think ahead so I don't waste anything. I  like making things when I can prep for a recipe and use the same ingredients for upcoming recipes throughout the week! It's cheaper, easier, and nothing gets wasted! This week I made stir fry veggies and wild rice, I'm in the process of making black bean soup, loaded sweet potatoes, vegan enchiladas, and from scratch veggie burgers with homemade baked sweet potato fries.  (Salivating yet? I'll be sharing these recipes later!) Now to today's recipe!

Spaghetti Squash with Marinara Veggie Sauce

Spaghetti Squash with Marinara Veggie Sauce

(I use whatever veggies I have at the house when making this recipe. You can use all of these veggies, or use whatever you have at home! Don't be afraid to change the recipe to your liking or to what you have lying around. If you don't have spaghetti squash, you can always use whatever pasta you have at home too.)

1 large spaghetti squash, cut in half
1 medium green bell pepper, diced
1 zuchini, cut into small pieces.
1 yellow squash, cut into small pieces.
1/2 head of cauliflower, cut into small pieces.
1/2 head of broccoli, cut into small pieces.
1 medium tomato, diced
4 cloves of garlic, finely diced
1 red onion, diced (sweet or yellow onion is fine too)
1 jar of your favorite spaghetti sauce (I use Bertolli's olive oil and garlic)
1/2 teaspoon of basil
1/2 teaspoon of oregano
1 Tbs of olive oil or coconut oil (I use coconut oil.)
1 Tbs spoon of vegan margarine (I use Earth Balance)
salt and pepper to taste

For the Spaghetti Squash:
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees fahrenheit.
Cut the spaghetti squash in half and use a spoon to remove all the seeds.
Place the spaghetti squash cut side up on a baking sheet.
Put 1/2 Tbs of the margarine onto the middle of each spaghetti squash.
Put salt and pepper onto each spaghetti squash
Bake the spaghetti squash for about 45 min. to an hour or until the squash is tender with a fork.

(Check the squash frequently so it doesn't get burnt on top.
Some people put tin foil on top to prevent burning, but I don't like to do that because I feel that the squash gets too moist and isn't as "noodle" like. If you see that the squash is getting burnt you can always put tinfoil on it at that point.)

Let the squash cool until you are able to touch it.
Use a fork and move it back and forth inside the squash. This will make the "noodles."

For the Marinara Sauce:
Use a large non stick pan and put your oil of choice in the pan on medium high heat.
Once the pan is hot, add your onion, garlic, pepper, broccoli, and cauliflower. Cook for about 5 minutes.
After 5 minutes, add the zuchini and yellow squash. Cook for about 7-10 minutes or until tender. (Try not to overcook your veggies. You don't want them too soft!)

After your veggies are cooked add the tomato and jar of spaghetti sauce. Add the basil, oregano, and salt and pepper.  Cook the sauce all the way through.

Put a desired amount of spaghetti squash "noodles"  on your plate and top with veggie marinara sauce. Enjoy!

Please let me know if you try this recipe, and what you think of it!

(My husband suggested making garlic bread for this as well, so if you feel you need a "bread" to go with this, feel free to add it to your dinner!)


Callen Rhoads

(All the veggies in the recipes posted are from my husband's business, "Rhoads Produce", in Englewood, FL!)