comfort food

Cheesy Creamy Broccoli and Noodles

8:00 AM

pun hello GIF
I know, it's been sadly quiet over here. And I'll I have is the same old excuse, school.
I feel very thankful that it is my last semester but a little overwhelmed with the work before me.
So please hang in there with me as I tackle on this last semester - the blog has kind of been forced to take a small back seat and my time for recipe creating is limited.
Doesn't mean I'm still not itching to put some creative juices into new recipes. 

Of course, my newest recipe stars my favorite food, pasta. 
Did you know I love pasta? All you have to do is scroll through my blog Pinterest page to see ALL.THE.PASTA. 

I love this recipe because of its creamy, cheesy, and (somewhat) guilt-free. It's can be made Vegan and is Gluten and Dairy Free (per the normal).
It's a great comfort meal as the crisp fall air settles in! 
Cheesy Creamy Broccoli and Noodles, vegan friendly, gluten and dairy free





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Cheesy Creamy Broccoli and Noodles
Ingredients
  • 12oz Gluten Free Elbow Pasta
  • 3 cups Fresh Broccoli, cut into florets
  • 2 tablespoons Dairy Free Better
  • 1/4 cup Gluten Free Flour
  • 1 cup Almond Milk
  • 1 cup Chicken Broth*
  • 1/4 teaspoon Garlic Power
  • 1/8 teaspoon Salt
  • 2 cup (approx. one package) Dairy Free Cheddar
Instructions
In a large pot, cook your pasta.When your pasta is 3-4 minutes from being done, add in broccoli. Drain noodles and broccoli and set aside in the large pot you cooked them in. In a medium pan, melt butter. Add flour and cook/stir for 1 minute Slowly whisk in milk and chicken broth and season with garlic powder, salt, and pepperStir consistently till mixture thickensRemove from heat once thickened and add Cheddar Cheese and mix till melted. Add, your cheese sauce to the pasta and broccoli in your large pot. Serve in a bowl and enjoy!
Details
Prep time: Cook time:10min Total time: Yield: 4 Servings

*I used a vegan chicken broth
*In the photo you may see bits of chicken, I added those in later and you can obviously do not need to add in chicken if you are completely vegan.
Cheesy Creamy Broccoli and Noodles, vegan friendly, gluten and dairy free

gluten free

Crispy Potato Tacos

10:45 AM

It's me again! With another meatless take on the tasty taco! This time we are going a little more starchy but a lot more filling! 
Crispy Potato Tacos. Gluten Free and Vegan

This recipe takes a little bit more time than your typical taco recipe, but it's well worth the wait.

Crispy Potato Tacos. Gluten Free and Vegan
Crispy Potato Tacos. Gluten Free and Vegan


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Crispy Potato Tacos
Ingredients
  • 2lbs Golden or Small Russet Potato cubed
  • Olive Oil
  • To Taste Salt and Pepper
  • 1 Onion Sliced
  • 1 teaspoon Ground Cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Paprika
  • 1 teaspoon Garlic Powder
Instructions
In a LARGE pot add cubed potatoes and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil and cook till the potatoes are fork tender (about 15-20 min)Drain once fork tender and set aside In a large frying pan warm oil and add in sliced onions Add in potatoes and sprinkler over the potatoes and onions all the spices (including Salt and Pepper)and mix together Rotate the potatoes every so often till crispyServe anyway you like to have your tacos!
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 4 Servings

Crispy Potato Tacos. Gluten Free and Vegan

caesar dressing

Easy Vegan Caesar Dressing

9:43 AM

I've shared a recipe for a dairy free caesar dressing before but I'm always looking and trying new and different ways to make my recipes easier.
And I've found an even easier way to make this Caesar dressing with even fewer ingredients for your salad dressing needs! 
Easy Vegan Caesar Dressing
This dressing is perfect for just putting overtop of a salad or making a traditional Caesar salad with all the goodies like parmesan and croutons (GF and Vegan of course ). I even like to add pasta to my Caesar salad!
Easy Vegan Caesar Dressing
Easy Vegan Caesar Dressing



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Easy Vegan Caesar Dressing |
This classic is now vegan with just a few simple ingredients!
Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup Vegan Mayo
  • 2 Teaspoon Dijon Mustard
  • 1 Tablespoon Capers
  • 2 Tablespoon Lemon Juice
  • 2 Tablespoon Nutritional Yeast
  • 1 clove Garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt
  • pinch of Black Pepper
Instructions
In a blender or mini blender (like a magic bullet), blend together all the ingredients.Once smooth, serve over a bed of lettuce and any other goodies you'd like on your salad!
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield:

*This dressing can be a bit tangy (as any Caesar Dressing should). Be light on the lemon juice if you don't want your dressing to be super tangy. 
Easy Vegan Caesar Dressing

asian

Broccoli Noodle Stir Fry

9:00 AM

This is an older recipe that has been a staple in our house for many years. It's quick, tasty, and modifiable!
Typically I make it with Chicken and Broccoli, but it can be made with anything else!
For my Vegan/Vegetarian readers, add more hearty veggies like zucchini, mushrooms, or even more broccoli in place to the chicken.

Broccoli Noodle Stir Fry | Gluten Free and Vegan Friendly

Broccoli Noodle Stir Fry | Gluten Free and Vegan Friendly





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Broccoli Noodle Stir Fry | Gluten Free |
Add to this tasty dish to your meal menu! Quick, easy, gluten free, and can be made Vegan!
Ingredients
  • 12 oz Spaghetti Noodles*
  • 1 pound Chicken cut into cubes (Optional)
  • 2 cups (or more) Broccoli Florets
  • 6 tablespoons Gluten Free Soy Sauce
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoon Brown Sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon (or more to taste) Ginger
  • 1 1/2 Teaspoon Sesame Oil
  • Garlic, minced
  • Green Onion
Instructions
Cook noodles according to box. While noodles are cooking, in a small bowl mix together soy sauce, brown sugar, ginger, sesame oil, and garlic. Place 2 TBLS of the sauce in a separate bowl with your cubed chicken (or veggies) and set the rest of the sauce aside. In a wok or large pan, saute garlic and green onions. Once green onions are fragrant, add in chicken OR (if cooking vegan/vegetarian) your veggies. Once cooked through, add in your noodles (which should have been cooked and drained by this point ). Add in your sauce and mix it together. Serve in a big bowl and enjoy!
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 4 servings

*I used these noodles from Ronzoni 
*As noted before, feel free to add in more veggies if you'd like! This recipe is easily adaptable!
*A squirt of Siracha is also a great way to add some extra spice to your sauce mixture

dairy free

One Pot Lasagna Pasta

8:00 AM

I love a good One Pot pasta dish.

Let's be real. I love anything with gluten-free pasta 
lady and the tramp kiss GIF

I love Lasagna but sometimes waiting for the typically oven cooked lasagna takes too long and is a way to hot to make in the summer.
That's what inspired this recipe. A craving for a cold night dish on a hot summers weeknight. 


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One Pot Lasagna Pasta
This one-pot recipe is perfect for summertime when you want some delicious lasagna but not the extra heat in your kitchen! It's quick, Gluten Free + Vegan, and no oven required,
Ingredients
  • 1 package Beyond Beef Crumbles
  • Olive Oil
  • To Taste Salt and Pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Italian Seasoning
  • 1 Small Onion, diced
  • 12oz Pasta (any kind, I used Penne)
  • 2 cups Marinara Sauce
  • 2 cups Water
  • 1 cup Vegan Mozzarella Cheese (optional)
  • 1 Tablespoon Parsley
Instructions
In a LARGE pot, heat oil and saute onions till fragrant Then add in your beef crumbles, salt and pepper, and Italian seasoning and cook till softOnce the crumbles are cooked, add in pasta, marinara sauce, and water to the pan Cover and bring to a simmer, keep stirring the pasta from time to time so they don't stick. After about 10-12 minutes, once the water is absorbed add in parsley and mozzarella cheese and mix together. Serve with some vegan parmesan or Cashew Ricotta for extra creaminess.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 4 Servings

*The Pasta that I used was Ronzoni Penne
*Cashew Ricotta is TOTALLY optional. I have an easy recipe for Cashew Ricotta here on the blog 
One Pot Lasagna Pasta - Gluten Free and Vegan!

One Pot Lasagna Pasta - Gluten Free and Vegan!

asian

Vegan Beef and Broccoli

9:00 AM

Summer has kicked into full gear friends so I'm not gonna lie, it's put a damper on the cooking front.
But have no fear! I found an old recipe, tested it a few times and I'm happy to share it with you!

Vegan Gluten Free Beef and Broccoli
Sometimes you have to get creative with what the meatless product creators have given you. For instance, Beef and Broccoli typically has thicker cuts of meat but finding a vegan alternative that resembles the thicker cuts is hard.
Vegan Gluten Free Beef and Broccoli
However, I've found that Beyond Beef Crumbles do a good enough job to resemble the classic Beef and Broccoli recipe with a Gluten Free and Vegan twiest! . 
Vegan Gluten Free Beef and Broccoli




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Vegan Beef and Broccoli
A vegan and gluten free take on the asian classic!
Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup Gluten Free Soy Sauce
  • 3 Tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoon Brown Sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Ground Ginger
  • 1-2 cloves Garlic Minced
  • 1 Tablespoon CornStarch
  • 1 package Beyond Beef Crumbles
  • 2 cups Broccoli Florets
Instructions
In a bowl, mix together the soy sauce, ACV, brown sugar, ground ginger, minced garlic, and cornstarch. Pour your mixture into a large skillet or sauce pan, and heat up till the mixture thickens. While it thickens put your beyond beef crumbles to a bowl and set aside. Once the mixture has thickened, add half of it to the separate bowl of beyond beef crumbles and toss. Next, add broccoli to the saucepan with the leftover mixture and toss to cover. Once the broccoli is coated and cooked, add in your crumbles and cook till your crumbles are cooked. Serve over your favorite rice.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 4 Servings

This recipe is perfect for the summer since it can be made right on the stovetop! 
Happy Cooking Friends! 

dairy free

Easy Fried Green Tomatoes | Gluten and Dairy Free |

9:04 AM

You can't live in the south without knowing how to whip up this classic fried side dish.
While tomatoes can be eaten year-round, I feel tomatoes are most used in the summer.
My tomato plants are starting to overflow with la romas, cherry's, and beefsteak.

Those green beefsteaks were calling my name the other day and I just had to whip up a personal batch of fried green tomatoes.

Easy Fried Green Tomatoes | Gluten and Dairy Free |

I made this dish with just one tomato so it can be easily doubled, tripled, or quadrupled if you have more then one tomato!
Easy Fried Green Tomatoes | Gluten and Dairy Free |




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EASY Fried Green Tomatoes - Gluten and Dairy Free
A quick gluten free and dairy free take on the southern classic!
Ingredients
  • 1 Green Beefsteak Tomato
  • 1/4 cup ChickPea Flour
  • 1/4 cup Italian GF Panko Crumbs
  • 1/2 tablespoon Parsley
  • 1 Egg, scrambled
  • Olive Oil
Instructions
In one bowl, mix the ChickPea Flour, Panko Crumbs, Parsley, and set aside. In another bowl, scramble your egg and set aside. Next, slice your tomatoes into 1/4 slices (not too thick but not to thin). In a non-stick pan, add enough Olive Oil (or other oil of your choice) to the pan till the entire bottom is covered. When the oil is heated, coat your tomatoes by placing them in the egg mixture first, then the flour, then put them in your pan with oil. Repete this till all your tomatoes are in the pan. After about a minute or so turn them over to cook on the other side. You want kind of a nice crispy brown color. Once they are done cooking place them on a plate with a paper towel to clean up the excess oil. Top with your favorite sauce of choice. I'm personally a fan of ranch on my FGT.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 1 Servings

allergies

Summer Allergy Remedies For Your Dog

8:00 AM

Summer allergies don't just affect us, they also affect our fur babies. I sometimes feel our pup battles allergies almost 10x worse then we do.
Poor guy sheds that winter coat and it's all the itching and all the time.

Now, I'm not the type of dog owner to rush my pup to the vet every time he starts to itch. We try our best to treat at home first. It saves us money and saves Bruno the anxiety of going to the vet.
There are a lot of holistic remedies that I have found work for our pup.
I'm not a vet so if you feel any of these suggestions may affect your pet differently, contact your vet. What may work for Bruno (who is a 70lb Rhodesian/Shepard Mix ) may not work for smaller pups.

Summer Allergy Remedies For Your Dog

Coconut Oil - it's good for EVERYTHING, even your pup. It great to lather on your dog where he itches the most. And its safe for them to ingest if they start to lick. If they really like it, you can add it to their food as well.

Aleo Vera - is also good for dogs, but make sure to buy a pet safe version (like this). Aleo Vera is not safe for their tummies so make sure you buy a pet safe aloe vera product! I find this is good for heat rashes on thinner haired dogs.

Dog Wipes - I always love to grab Pet Wipes while I'm at TJ Maxx, but you can get them pretty much anywhere. They are a great way to wipe off the allergens that dogs bring in with them from outside.

Summer Allergy Remedies For Your Dog

Anti Itch Sprays - I find these work the best when Brunos scratched himself too much and he's started to bleed (it happens around his face often). Burt's Bees (which make some of my favorite dog products), has a great anti-itch spray. I've also purchased a spray at the pet store with an antiseptic in it to help heal up the cuts.

Shirts and Cover-Ups - I've found keeping the itch spots covered helps deter itching. Bruno has accumulated many of my old shirts into his own collection. If you don't have many shirts that fit your dog (or you don't want to share), Amazon always has some cute dog clothing options.

Brunos never had the tummy for the OTC allergy pills. I know many have suggested it as a cure-all for his allergies but I'd rather use all my remedies for proactive care first.
But if it works for your pup, by all means, use the OTC allergy pills.

Washing your dog regularly will also help with allergy season. You never want to wash them too much because it will dry out their skin, but you want to keep them washed enough that a nice soothing shampoo with keep them feeling fresh, clean, and itch-free.

From DeliciousLiving.com "Use a specially formulated dog shampoo and work into a lather. (Human shampoos typically have a higher pH, which can dry a dog’s skin.) Or make your own gentle shampoo [read also: DIY dog beauty: 5 pet shampoos you can make at home]. Be careful not to get any shampoo into her eyes or ears. (source)
Summer Allergy Remedies For Your Dog
Does your dog suffer too? What home remedies do you use on your pup?

allergy friendly

Skillet Mexican Rice Casserole | Gluten Free and Vegan |

9:00 AM

I was editing the photos of this recipe and I realized it looks a lot like a past Mexican Skillet meal I've made.
But trust me, they make look the same but they taste extremely different.

I love a good rice casserole! Especially one that can be made right on the stovetop!

Skillet Mexican Rice Casserole | Gluten Free and Vegan |

Skillet Mexican Rice Casserole | Gluten Free and Vegan |


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Skillet Mexican Rice Casserole
Beat the heat and make you rice casserole on the stovetop! This Skillet Mexican Rice Casserole is perfect for a quick and filling weeknight meal!
Ingredients
  • 1 Small Red Onion, diced
  • Olive Oil
  • 2 teaspoon Cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Chili Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Smoked Paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 Red Bell Pepper, diced
  • 1/4 cup - 1/2 cup Diced Jalapeno (to taste)
  • 1 cup Corn Kernels
  • 15oz Can of Black Beans, rinsed
  • 12oz Jar of favorite Salsa
  • 1 and 1/2 cup COOKED brown rice
  • 1 bag Dairy Free cheese, cheddar, pepper jack, or Mexican
Instructions
In a large skillet, heat oil. Add in onion and cook for til onion is fragrant (about 2-3 minutes). Then add in your spices (from cumin to oregano) and cook for another 2-3 minutes. Next you want to add in your red pepper, green chilis, and still together. Cook for a few minute more then add in the beans, corn, salsa and rice. Still until well combined. After a everything is mixed together, add in your cheese, as much or as little as you'd like. This next part is optional - turn the broiler on low, top the casserole with cheese, and place in broiler till cheese is melted.Once done, pull out and serve! Top with some lovely dairy free sour cream or guac if you so choose!
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 4 Servings

I love this dish because it is so hearty that you don't really need anything to go with it. And yes, corn is not the most nutritionally based veggie but its a perfect addition to this dish.
Skillet Mexican Rice Casserole | Gluten Free and Vegan |

Skillet Mexican Rice Casserole | Gluten Free and Vegan |

dairy free

EASY Tofu Popcorn Chick'n

8:00 AM

Y'all, there is a lot I miss due to my food allergies/intolerances. One of those is fried food. Like good old fried chicken. Back in the day, nothing was better than those little-fried popcorn chicken nuggets you could pick up in the deli at the grocery store.

EASY Tofu Popcorn Chick'n. Gluten free and Dairy Free
I don't use tofu often. Mostly because I am the only person in my household that will touch the stuff. The dog won't even eat it 😕
I got the inspiration for this recipe from my fried chicken cravings and also many long hours on Pinterest one day (who doesn't get inspired from Pinterest?)
EASY Tofu Popcorn Chick'n. Gluten free and Dairy Free

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EASY Tofu Popcorn Chick'n
These little nuggets are so easy to make and taste just like the traditional meat-filled ones! You won't even know the difference!
Ingredients
  • 13oz (1 container) Extra Firm Tofu
  • 1/3 cup Gluten Free All purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup Nutritional Yeast
  • 1/2 tablespoon Poultry seasoning (most are vegan)
  • 1/2 – 1 teaspoon Smoked Paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • 1/2 cup Water
  • 1 tablespoon Yellow Mustard
  • to taste Salt and Pepper
  • 3 tablespoon Olive Oil
Instructions
Press Tofu for about 10 minutes to make it as dry as possible. While Tofu is being pressed. In a large bowl, mix all dry ingredients (flour to garlic powder) Slowly add in your 1/2 cup of water so the dry mix then resembled pancake batter. Add mustard and salt and pepper. Take your tofu and break (or cut) into pieces and put it into the batter. Heat oil in your non-stick pan. Pour the entire bowl (batter and all) into the pan spread the tofu into a single layer. Cook each side till golden brown. Sometimes the batter doesn't stick to the tofu well or sticks to the bottom of the pan. I find using a spatula helps turn over the tofu.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 4 Servings

*ChickPea flour will work just as well as All Purpose GF flour.
*All-purpose flour is thicker and may require more water
EASY Tofu Popcorn Chick'n. Gluten free and Dairy Free

Curcumin

Summer Care with Solgar + Giveaway

8:42 AM

Disclosure: As a #VitacostVip I received compensation for this post. All thoughts and opinions are 100% mine. This post may also contain affiliate links.

Summer is going to be here before you know it!

Or if you are like me and live in the south, it's kind of already here. 

Summertime is full of fun, sun, vacations, and relaxations!
But while you are enjoying all that fun it's important to remember to take care of our bodies! 
When people ask me for a simple tip for being healthy, I ALWAYS suggest getting on a good supplement regimen. Sometimes due to food allergies, health issues, or deficiencies, our bodies need a little help getting the nutrients it needs.
Summer Care with Solgar. Solgar Curcumin

Curcumin, specifically Solgar Full Spectrum Curcumin, needs to be an addition to your vitamin cabinet. Curcumin is a powerful anti-inflammatory but can sometimes be hard to absorb. But Solgar changed that and has made this curcumin supplement body ready for fast absorption. 

But what about other Curcumin supplements? How is this better.
As mentioned before, the absorption is WAY better than other supplements. Solgar has found a way to delivers the equivalency of nearly 75 (100 mg) capsules of standardized curcumin extract into ONE supplement. Also a recent clinical study of this supplement found it stayed in the bodies system for a full 24 hours. Giving your body all the nutrients it needs for a longer period of time.

Why should I take it? 
It's not only the best natural anti-inflammatory you can take (in my opinion) it is also a powerful antioxidant.
It will help you move and move faster.
My husband suffers from knee pain from his military service. Surgeries have come and gone but he still suffers from arthritis and frequent pain. So finding alternatives for traditional OTC anti-inflammatory is so important to us. This Curcumin has been a Godsend. He has mentioned that it has taken some of the daily pain away (though he has some severe arthritis which is very hard to touch).
Summer Care with Solgar. Solgar Curcumin

This supplement is Non-GMO, Gluten Free, Wheat & Dairy Free. Their packaging is one of my favorite aspects of the Solgar brand. (from their website) "Most Solgar products are packaged in amber glass bottles, which protect against heat, light, and moisture. Our recyclable glass bottles are nonleaching, non-porous, and odorless."
If you want to read more about why Solgar is such a trustworthy and high standard brand, click here to read their brochure 

Vitacost is the perfect place to purchase this amazing product to add to your vitamin regime!


Are You ready for the Giveaway!?
I handpicked some of my favorite products from Vitacost that you need in your life this summer including the amazing Solgar Full Spectrum Curcumin!
Summer Care with Solgar. Solgar Curcumin

What are some of my Summer Care essentials from Vitacost?
PopLight Hot Air Popper - Popcorn is my FAVORITE go-to snack. I like to make it on the stovetop but good lordy in the summer it is WAY to hot to do that. Thank goodness for this air popper, its perfect for popping that perfect bowl of popcorn!
ArtDiffuser - I love this diffuser because not only is it a perfect size but it is also Bluetooth capable so you can blast some tunes through it while your oils are diffusing (perfect to have running during a party).
Acure Organics Simply Unscented Body Wash -Acure just rebranded many of their products and I LOVE this body wash. It leaves my skin feeling clean and refreshed after being in the hot summer sun.
Barsmith Simple Syrup - You can't have summer without some lovely drinks! While this simple syrup is perfect for making that tasty summer cocktail, it is also great for mocktails, or just a good old jar of sweet tea
Reviva Labs Mascara in Brown - One of my goals this year was to have most of my makeup products switched over to non-toxic clean products by the end of the year. Vitacost makes this so easy! This mascara was so impressive and I LOVE using it every day.


Yes, you can win all of this and the Solgar Full Spectrum Curcumin!
Just enter below!
WINNER HAS BEEN CONTACTED! 
Congrats Farrah!
Thank you for entering! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway
U.S Residents only - Must be 18 years old or older
Disclosure: As a #VitacostVip I received compensation for this post. All thoughts and opinions are 100% mine. 
This post may also contain affiliate links.

gluten free

Vegan + Gluten Free Recipes For Cinco De Mayo

9:06 AM

I really wanted to come up with a new fun recipe for this week in honor of Cinco De Mayo on Saturday.

But you know, school, term papers, life, blah, blah, blah. 

However, I realized that I had a plethora of gluten-free and vegan Mexican recipes that I could put together for your weekend fiesta! 
Vegan + Gluten Free Recipes For Cinco De Mayo

Below are some great, simple, easy, vegan, and gluten-free Mexican recipes for Cinco De Mayo!




Vegan + Gluten Free Recipes For Cinco De Mayo
Every good fiesta needs some amazing queso! I have a quick 3 ingredient recipe for a vegan queso that will surely be a crowd pleaser.

Vegan + Gluten Free Recipes For Cinco De Mayo
Both are perfect sides for your tacos! Tastes just like the Mexican rice you get at the restaurant (if not better). 

Vegan + Gluten Free Recipes For Cinco De Mayo
This recipe is great for a party as they make a lot with only a few ingredients. Plus, who doesn't love a recipe you can set and forget?

Vegan + Gluten Free Recipes For Cinco De Mayo
For those veggie lovers in your life, this recipe will be right up their ally. The sweetness of the butternut squash helps balance out the spiciness from the enchilada sauce.

Vegan + Gluten Free Recipes For Cinco De Mayo
I haven't made this recipe in a while (that needs to change for sure!) I love a good pasta recipe.  This is perfect for a meal for two on Cinco De Mayo. Packed with flavor!

Doing anything fun for Cinco De Mayo? 
I don't think we have many plans but I love any excuse to eat Mexican food ;)