What’s For Dinner: Healthy (vegan & gluten free) Mexican Sweet Potato Casserole

When I read a recipe that is labelled “vegan”, I automatically ignore it. Because, let’s face it, vegan foods I have tried are usually pretty blah. Trust me, you want to read about this one.

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My besties, Cristianna and Lindsay, told me about this dish. I never tried their version, as they included cheese, but tried my own recipe. Surprisingly, this was an extremely simple recipe, that truly is delicious, and after looking over my ingredients, I realized it is vegan. Cool! And there is no gluten. Double cool!

This hearty vegetable casserole is very flavorful and very filling. If I’m trying to watch my weight, I always make this to eat throughout the week. But then again, I have made it for Christmas dinner as well. It is very versatile! And did I mention easy? Here are the details below.

Here’s the recipe video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TSFhhowWl8U

Ingredients
-3 large sweet potatoes
-2 cans black beans
-1 can whole kernel corn
-1/2 yellow onion, chopped
-1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
-3 tablespoons minced garlic
-2 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon salt
-1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
-1/4 teaspoon chipotle powder
-1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika

Directions
1. Peel sweet potatoes and chop into same-sized pieces. Place into
about 10 cups of water, with 1 tablespoon salt, and boil for at least
20 minutes. Once they are fork-tender, they are ready.
2. While potatoes are boiling, prepare other ingredients and place in
a bowl:
-rinse cans of beans and corn
-add onion, garlic, and cilantro
3. Once potatoes are done, drain and place them into a very large
bowl. Mash them until smoothe.
4. Add remaining salt, pepper, chipotle powder, and paprika. Stir.
5. Add all vegatables to the potatoes and stir until well-mixed.
6. Spray an oven-safe dish and add the casserole. Cook at 350
degrees for 20 minutes.
7. Add more cilantro on the top when serving, if you like cilantro.

What’s for dinner? An easy, healthy, flavorful recipe

One of my favorite dinners to make is my seared chicken breast, with “colorful couscous”, and topped with an egg. It is pretty easy, healthful and light, and really delicious. If you want to give it a shot, here’s the recipe:

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Colorful Couscous and seared chicken topped with over-easy egg

Seared Chicken (2 large chicken breasts)

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Ingredients:
-Two fresh (not frozen) boneless, skinless chicken breasts.
-1 teaspoon garlic salt. Or you can do 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
-1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
-1 teaspoon Cavender’s seasoning: SALT FREE. If you do not have
salt free, do not add previously listed salt.
*Optional: If you like herbs, feel free to add some dry herbs to your
liking. I like rosemary, basil, oregano, or parsley….or all of them.
-2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Directions:
1. Cut away any excess fat from the chicken breasts.
2. Place onto wax paper, cover with plastic wrap, and pound the
chicken until evenly thin. You may use a tenderizer or even just a
spatula.  Do this on both sides for most tender results.
3. Add the seasonings evenly over the two pieces of chicken on both
sides (the seasonings listed above are a total amount you will use
on both sides, for both pieces of chicken, combined)
4. Add the e.v.o.o. to a searing pan, making sure the oil covers the
bottom. Heat to medium high heat.
5. Once hot enough (I dip a small end of chicken in and if it sizzles, it
is ready) place the chicken into the pan. Cover with lid. Leave
alone and cook for about 5 minutes, or until the bottom is golden
brown.
6. Flip chicken over and repeat the process. Cover. Cook until golden
brown.
7. Remove from heat and let sit for at least 5 minutes before digging
in.

Colorful Couscous

Here is video recipe, followed by written instructions:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9_yy_iH-DQA

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“Colorful Coucous”

Ingredients
-1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
-4 bell peppers, diced (1 red, 1 yellow, 1 orange, 1 green)
-3 medium shallots, diced
-2 tablespoons minced garlic
*Optional: Any other veggies you love will work in this dish. I now
enjoy adding cut asparagus spears into it as well.
-1 cup low sodium chicken or vegetable stock
-1 cup couscous
-1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
-1 teaspoon ground black pepper, or to taste
-1 egg (optional)

Directions
1. In a medium-large sauce pan (If you cook chicken first, do NOT
clean the pan before making this dish in the same one. This will
give it a little extra flavor from those chicken bits left at the
bottom), heat e.v.o.o. on medium heat.
2. Add diced shallots and bell peppers. Stirring occasionally,  heat 2-
3 minutes, until they start to soften.  During this time, add your
salt and pepper.
3. Add minced garlic and continue stirring and cooking for another 2
minutes.
4. Add broth and turn heat to medium-high.
5. Once broth is boiling, add couscous. Remove from heat. Stir
slightly, making sure all couscous is in the broth liquid. Wait 5
minutes.
6. Once liquid is soaked into couscous (may take 5.5 or 6 minutes
instead), use a fork to fluff the the couscous. Then you’re ready to
eat!
*Optional: If you like egg yolk, you’re a good person. Also, you’ll
enjoy adding a sunny-side up egg or over easy egg to the top. The
yolk really gives the dish a luxurious flavor.

Final Steps
Uh…just put it on a plate and enjoy! I like getting a bite of everything at once, the separate dishes really enhance the flavor of each other.

If you have any similar recipes or suggestions to make this one better, leave us a comment.