Healthy Alternatives

  • Cook’s Corner: Healthy Homemade Dressings

    So you’ve decided to be the healthiest version of you possible this year. You’ve fol­lowed your exercise routines, learned to deal with the stressors in your life, and dedicated yourself to eating local and fresh. However, there is yet another factor causing inflam­mation and adding too many unwanted ingredients in your diet.

  • Ranch Dressing

    Weekly Recipe: 
    MAKES: 1 1/4 CUPS

    1/2 cup rice milk

    2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

    1 small clove garlic, finely minced or pressed

    1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley

    1 tablespoon finely chopped celery leaves

    3/4 cup vegan soy-free mayonnaise

    1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

    1/4 teaspoon xanthan gum

    1/4 teaspoon salt

    Freshly ground pepper

    In a small bowl, combine the rice milk with the lemon juice. In a blender or mini chopper, combine the garlic, parsley, celery leaves, vegan mayonnaise, and mus­tard. Pulse a few times. Add the rice milk mixture, and pulse. Add the xanthan gum and blend well. Add the salt and pepper to taste and blend until rich and creamy. You will have about 1 1/4 cups. Store in the fridge in an airtight container for up to a week. Source: Allergy-Free and Easy Cooking by Cybele Pascal

  • Tahini-Lemon Dressing

    Weekly Recipe: 
    MAKES: 1 CUP

    1/2 cup raw tahini

    1/3 cup water

    1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

    1/2 teaspoon crushed garlic

    1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

    1/4 teaspoon salt

    Dash cayenne

    1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley

    Put the tahini, water, lemon juice, garlic, cumin, salt, and cayenne in a blender and process on medium speed until smooth. Add the parsley and pulse briefly, just to mix. Stored in a sealed jar in the refrigera­tor, Tahini-Lemon Dressing will keep for two days. Source: Raw Food Made Easy for 1 or 2 People by Jennifer Cornbleet

  • Effortless Anytime Balsamic Vinaigrette

    Weekly Recipe: 
    MAKES: 3/4 CUP

    1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

    3 tablespoons flaxseed oil or extra virgin olive oil

    2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

    2 tablespoons unsweetened applesauce

    1 tablespoon pure maple syrup

    1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

    1 clove garlic, minced

    1/4 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt, or to taste

    Freshly ground black pepper

    In a small bowl, whisk together all of the ingredients. This dressing will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for at least two weeks. Source: The Oh She Glows Cookbook by Angela Liddon

  • Garlic Herb Dressing

    Weekly Recipe: 
    MAKES: 1 1/4 CUPS

    2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

    1 – 2 teaspoons salt-free garlic and  herb seasoning

    1/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard

    Pinch of sugar

    3 tablespoons olive oil

    In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, garlic and herb seasoning, mustard, and sugar. Slowly, in a thin stream, whisk in the olive oil until the dressing is emulsi­fied. Source: You Won’t Believe It’s Salt-Free! by Robyn Webb

  • Apple Cider Vinaigrette

    Weekly Recipe: 
    MAKES: 3/4 CUP

    1/2 cup apple cider vinegar

    2 tablespoons (packed) light brown sugar

    1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

    Pinch of salt, or more to taste

    Combine all the ingredients in a glass jar and seal the lid tightly. Shake vigorously to combine. (The vinaigrette can be refrigerated, covered, for up to two weeks. Let it return to room temperature and shake vigorously before using.) Source: The Earthbound Cook by Myra Goodman

  • Greener Than Green Goddess Dressing

    Weekly Recipe: 
    MAKES: 1 3/4 CUPS

    3/4 cup water

    1/2 cup organic plain yogurt

    2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

    2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

    1 avocado, halved and flesh scooped out

    1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

    2 scallions, white and green parts, chopped

    1 clove garlic, chopped

    1/2 teaspoon sea salt

    Put all the ingredients in a blender or food processor and process until smooth and creamy. You may want to add a pinch of salt and a squeeze of lemon juice. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days. Source: The Longev­ity Kitchen by Rebecca Katz with Mat Edelson

  • Mock Mashed Potatoes

    Weekly Recipe: 
    Serves: 8 – 10

    1 tablespoon olive oil

    2 cloves garlic, sliced

    1 head cauliflower, roughly chopped

    3 cups cooked cannellini beans

    1/2 cup vegetable broth

    2 tablespoons fresh parsley, sliced (chives would also work well)

    Salt and pepper to taste

    Heat oil in a small frying pan over medium heat. Add sliced garlic, and cook until slightly browned. Meanwhile, place one to two inches of water in a large pot and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Place cauliflower in a steam basket and place in pot. Cover and steam until fork tender, about 10 minutes. Remove and set aside. In a food processor, combine garlic-infused oil, cauliflower, cannellini beans, vegetable broth, and parsley, and purée until smooth. Scrape down the sides as needed, and season with salt and pepper. Serve warm and enjoy! Source: Recipe by Amanda Maguire,

  • Chicken “Parmesan” with Simple Red Sauce

    Weekly Recipe: 
    Serves: 4

    Simple red sauce

    1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes

    1 tablespoon olive oil

    2 cloves garlic, finely minced or pressed

    2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

    1/4 cup shredded Daiya vegan mozzarella


    1/4 cup cornstarch or tapioca starch

    3/4 cup gluten-free breadcrumbs (I prefer Ener-G)

    Salt and freshly ground pepper

    1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

    2 tablespoons rice milk

    6 tablespoons olive oil

    4 (4-ounce) chicken cutlets, 1/4-inch thick

    1/2 cup shredded Daiya vegan mozzarella

    Fresh basil for garnish

    Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. To make the sauce, combine all the ingredients for the sauce in a heavy pan over medium heat. Bring to a simmer and cook for five minutes, stirring often. Set aside. Pour the cornstarch into a shallow bowl and set aside. Combine the breadcrumbs with some salt and pepper and the oregano in another shallow bowl; set aside. Pour the rice milk into a third shallow bowl. Whisk in four tablespoons of the olive oil, one tablespoon at a time, until you have a creamy emulsion. Turn one chicken cutlet in the cornstarch, coating both sides. Lift out, shaking off the extra cornstarch, and dip in the rice milk mixture, then turn in the breadcrumbs to coat. Set aside. Repeat with the remaining three cutlets.

    Heat one tablespoon of the olive oil in a large, heavy pan over medium-high heat until just starting to ripple. Add the cutlets and cook for two minutes, then add the remaining one tablespoon olive oil, turn the chicken, and cook for two minutes more. Transfer to a nonstick baking pan. Spray the tops of the cutlets with a little cooking spray and bake for five minutes. Meanwhile, rewarm the sauce over medium heat. Remove the baking pan from the oven, flip the chicken, and top each cutlet with two tablespoons of the sauce. Sprinkle the vegan mozzarella evenly over the cutlets and return to the oven to bake for eight more minutes, until the cheese has melted and is bubbling. Serve garnished with a few basil leaves. Source: Allergy-Free and Easy Cooking by Cybele Pascal

  • Triple Berry Cobbler

    Weekly Recipe: 
    Makes: 12 giant or 24 party servings

    About 2 2/3 cups blueberries

    About 2 2/3 cup raspberries

    About 2 1/2 cups marionberries

    1 1/4 cups sugar

    1/4 cup cornstarch

    1/4 cup lemon juice


    1 cup butter, room temperature

    1 cup sugar

    2 tablespoons vanilla extract

    2/3 cup cornmeal

    2/3 cup tapioca starch

    1/3 cup potato starch

    1/3 cup rice flour

    1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder

    1 teaspoon salt

    1 teaspoon cinnamon

    1/2 teaspoon cardamom

    1/4 teaspoon xanthan gum

    1 cup milk

    2 tablespoons coarse sanding sugar or granulated sugar, for topping

    Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. In a large bowl, toss together the blueberries, raspberries, marionberries, sugar, cornstarch, and lemon juice to evenly coat the berries. Pour into a 9x13-inch baking pan. To make the topping, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Blend in the vanilla. In a separate bowl, combine the cornmeal, starches, rice flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, cardamom, and xanthan gum. Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture in three additions, alternating with the milk. Pour the topping over the berry filling. Sprinkle the sanding sugar evenly over the topping and bake until the topping is cooked through, a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, and the berry filling is hot and bubbly, 65 to 70 minutes. Serve hot or cold. Source: Sweet Cravings by Kyra Bussanich, image by Leela Cyd