Southwest Black Bean Sliders with Chipotle Mayo

  • 2 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • ½ C cilantro, minced fine
  • 2-3 chilies in odobo sauce, minced fine
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • Scant of s/p
  • ½ C breadcrumbs

Preheat oven to 350°.  Line baking tray with parchment paper (or lightly oil tray).  Pulse beans in food processor or mash them with a potato masher/fork/hands…  Don’t mash too well, you want to see some of the beans intact.  Transfer the beans to a large bowl and add the cilantro, chilies and spices.  Once integrated, add in the breadcrumbs by ¼ C at a time.  Shape patties.  Lightly spray the patties with cooking spray and bake on each side for about 8-12 minutes.  Serve warm with or without buns. 

Chipotle Mayo

Using the remaining chilies, minced them up very fine and mix together vegan mayo and chilies with their sauce to you taste.

Indian Spiced Tofu Lollipops with Cilantro Chutney


  • 1 pckg extra firm tofu, (water squeezed out and cut into 1 ½”-2” cubes)
  • 1 TBS olive oil
  • Garam Masala


  • 2 green chilies, diced (this can vary to your taste)
  • 1 TBS minced fresh ginger
  • 2 TBS fresh lemon juice
  • 1 TBS olive oil
  • 1 minced garlic clove
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • large bunch of cilantro

Making the tofu:

Over medium/high heat, oil a large pan.  Toss tofu in pan to evenly coat with oil and lightly shake on garam masla, toss again.  Continue to flip and re-season the tofu as each side becomes browned.  When complete, place on a plate to cool.  Stick each cube with a short skewer (or a lollipop stick).

For the chutney:

In a food processor, blend all ingredients except the cilantro until well mixed.  Scrape down the sides many times to really incorporate all the flavors.  Slowly add in the cilantro leaves until the mixture turns green. 

To serve:

Place a dollop of chutney on each lollipop or pour into a bowl for dipping.


Add in some vegan cream cheese to make a sandwich spread!

Watch Julie and Caryn make the lollipops here!

OK, for all of you who think “eating vegan” is so darn tough, check this one out!  Forgo the nut covered cheese ball this year and offer your guests this dreamy little delight.  This also makes a great hostess gift.  Let’s kill two birds here - package this up as a gift and give.  Chances are they’ll put it out and now you, my plant based partner, will have something to nosh on too!

Cheesy Herbed Cashew Spread

Blend cashews, vinegar and tomato paste.  Once creamy add Italian seasoning and the nutritional yeast.   Chill for at for ½ hour. Use as a spread, dip or condiment!

Mini Chipotle Tempeh Tacos

  • 1 TBS olive oil
  • ½ yellow onion, finely diced
  • garlic clove, minced
  • 1 8oz pkg tempeh, ground in food processor
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2-3 TBS chipotle salsa (Trader Joe’s has a good one)
  • 1 ½ mixed greens, cut finely
  • Guacamole
  • Mini corn taco shells

In a large skillet and over med-high heat, sauté onion until translucent, about 3-4 minutes.  Add garlic and continue to cook for another 30 seconds.  Add tempeh, chili powder and salt.  Allow to cook until tempeh begins to brown – about 4 minutes.  Add salsa and mix well.  Once heated thoroughly, remove from heat and begin to build tacos. 

  1. Taco shell
  2. Mixed greens
  3. Tempeh mixture
  4. Top with guacamole

If you cannot find mini taco shells, you can make your own!  Purchase 12” round corn tortillas and with a round cookie cutter, cut out mini rounds.  Heat olive oil in a skillet and once sizzling; add the tortillas one by one.  Only let them fry for about 5-7 seconds on each side, quickly remove and gently fold in half.  They will dry as mini taco shells. 

Here’s a video segment showing you how to put these little two-bite tacos together!

Here we are at December 1st. 

Your calendar is filling up with places you need to be and people you need to see; what will you bring?  If one of the places to be this year is your house, what will you serve?  Fear not, for the next 23 days I’ll post a vegan appetizer recipe a day to help you prepare for your Christmas happy hours, work pot lucks, girlfriend nights, neighborhood get togethers, hostess gifts, and of course family soirees.

Most recipes are my originals unless otherwise noted (there is a FANTASTIC spinach/artichoke dip coming from a chef friend, stay tuned…) and I’ll try to include pics/video link when available.  

OK, enough jab, let’s get to it.


HOLIDAY STLVegGirl Oil-Free Garlic Hummus

2 - 14 oz. cans Garbanzo Beans (I like Eden Brand)

¼ - ½  C vegetable broth (this will vary depending upon how thick you like your hummus)

2 cloves of garlic

2 TBS tahini paste

2-3 TBS Braggs Liquid Aminos (soy sauce/coconut liquid aminos/sea salt also work)

Juice of ½ lemon

Blend all ingredients in a blender until a smooth, thick consistency is reached.

Makes roughly three cups.  Keeps well in an air tight glass container in the refrigerator for five days.

For a Christmas Party throw fresh basil leaves at the end of blending your first batch for a green colored hummus.  Clean your blender well and make a second batch; towards the end of blending, add in roasted red peppers and keep adding until it begins to turn red.  Place both batches in bowls, set on a tray and garnish with celery, cherry tomatoes and pita chips. 

Watch Great Day St. Louis’ Matt Chambers and STLVegGirl make it here.


VEGAN and GLUTEN FREE mini muffins.




or dessert.


I have recently struck up an unlikely friendship with a hard core carnivore.  Now, I’m not a crusader of my plant based diet; if you know me, you know this to be very true.  However, becoming friends with this guy was not only a little off because of his carnivorous ways, but also because like me, he has a business focused around what he eats.  His company, Grillin Fools is a great resource if you want to grill, well, anything. 

Even though he is a master at the grill, I’m pretty sure his favorite thing to smoke/grill/sear started out on four legs.  We raz each other often on Twitter, knowing full well we will NEVER convert the other, we really don’t want to, we just keep throwing the shots because others (mainly us) still think its ironic that the carnivore and the vegan have found common ground. 

Though not a recipe using meat, he recently re-posted this recipe on Twitter and mentioned that I MIGHT be able to veganize it.  Might?  Simple, my friend.

****My Substitutions are in BOLD****

Author: Scott Thomas
Cuisine: Vegetarian BBQ
Recipe type: Side Dish
Serves: 4
Prep time:  10 mins
Cook time:  20 mins
Total time:  30 mins
  1. Melt the butter in a sauce pan
  2. Place the ears of corn right over the hot side of the grill
  3. Brush with a little butter, being careful to avoid a big flare up
  4. Roll the corn over 180 degrees when it is browned on the bottom
  5. Brush with butter again
  6. Once the bottom is browned again, rotate so the side is over the heat and brush with butter
  7. Finally rotate to the last side that has not browned and butter again
  8. Once it is browned all the way around, remove from the grill and take inside to slather with sour cream, shake the BBQ rub over it and then sprinkle with the cheese
  9. Serve                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              
    image  image

    Vegan Parmesan Cheese Recipe: In a small food processor, mix 1 TBS walnuts, 1/2C nutritional yeast and salt to taste. 

Love cream cheese, but miss it because you’re either lactose intolerant or plant based? Try Daiya’s new cream cheese. OMG!!


THE THUG KITCHEN COOKBOOK IS OFFICIALLY FUCKING HAPPENING. There will be a shitload of new recipes and photos that we’re cooking up just for the book. Rodale will be handling the U.S. publishing and House of Anansi is covering Canada. Right now we’re talking to the UK, so trust that the book will be across the goddamn globe.


  1. Camera: Canon EOS DIGITAL REBEL XT
  2. Aperture: f/5.6
  3. Exposure: 1/40th
  4. Focal Length: 33mm

Turned out better than I thought! Faux Fried Zucchini Fritters (fat free).
cc @susanffvk
#vegan #vegetarian #healthy