Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

by Megan on January 22, 2015

Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies // take a megabite

These cookies are chewy and salty sweet. They’re also BIG which means there’s lots of middle and that’s the best part. Kinda like how the best part of the weekend is when there’s a 3rd day full of antique shopping and bibimbap eating and chit-chatting. These cookies are the 3-day weekend of your (my) January #veganphase living.

Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies // take a megabite

I think it’s really cool that there’s maple syrup in these and I think you’re really cool for not judging that lil glimpse of dumb turquoise socks in the first photo. So make these if you’re taking a break from dairy and stuff or if you’re out of butter and eggs or if you just are the type who wants to try every single chocolate chip cookie that’s ever existed.

Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies // take a megabite

Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies (makes 1 dozen large cookies)
Recipe adapted from Eat Me, Delicious

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 t baking powder
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 2 big pinches of kosher salt, plus more for garnish
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar or brown sugar
  • 2/3 cup maple syrup
  • 4 t pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 2/3 cup bittersweet chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, soda, salt, and sugar. In a 2-cup measuring cup whisk together the maple syrup, vanilla, and olive oil. Add to the dry ingredients and beat until almost together. Add chocolate chips and mix until combined.
  2. Scoop the dough using a 1/4 cup measuring cup or ice cream scoop. Place on the prepared baking sheet. Flatten slightly and sprinkle with salt. Bake for 11 minutes.

Yay! Click HERE for a printable pdf of the recipe above.

P.S. I mentioned these casually before into vegan ice cream cups right HERE.

Insta-living // take a megabite

Pink oven of my dreams // Balloon business
Favorite tights and pup // Spring is coming!

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Snack Attack (This Bar Saves Lives)

by Megan on January 18, 2015

Snacks are just a part of life. // take a megabite

Snacks are really important to me. I won’t stop talking about it! So when the folks from This Bar Saves Lives contacted me to blog about where I snack, I was totally into it. Good snack, good cause, less hangry biz.

Snacks are just a part of life. // take a megabite

I put a few bars in my desk drawer to eat between breakfast and lunch or lunch and dinner or for lunch. I liked this one best. It has vanilla bean freckles.

Snacks are just a part of life. // take a megabite

This one matched my outfit. So thank goodness I had one in my purse to eat on my way to work or to the store or to the movies, ya know?

Snacks are just a part of life. // take a megabite

I even packed some in my backpack to bring to Chicago to eat on the plane or in the hotel or before dinner or after brunch.

So, thanks for the snacks! They were a dream.

{ 2 comments }

Almond Milk Spiced Hot Cocoa

by Megan on January 14, 2015

Almond Milk Spiced Hot Cocoa // take a megabite

I like to heat this up on the stove all casual-like in my favorite tights/dress combo. It pairs well with Pinterest perusing, recipe planning, BFF chit-chat, pup hugging, fireside hanging, record listening, neon nail painting and pink moccasin slipper wearing. You see, not to get all new years resolution-y on you guys, but I think I need to get my self-care in order. And this hot cocoa (and all those pairings) are helping me do just that.

So give yourself a compliment sandwich, warm up some cocoa in your favorite outfit, plan a party, cut yourself some slack, don’t ask anyone’s opinion, like what you like because you like it, and don’t bother sharing these 3-4 servings with anybody, ok? (Unless you want to and then please do! You’re in charge of your life and your hot cocoa. Believe it! I bet you didn’t think this recipe would be chock full of metaphors and lady power did you? Me neither!)

Almond Milk Spiced Hot Cocoa // take a megabite

Almond Milk Spiced Hot Cocoa (Makes 3-4 servings)
Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 cinnamon sticks, cut in half lengthwise
  • 1/4 t freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise or 1 t pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened natural cocoa powder
  • 2 oz. dark chocolate, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 t kosher salt

Directions:

  1. Bring milk, cinnamon sticks, vanilla bean and nutmeg to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove cinnamon sticks and vanilla bean. Whisk in cocoa powder, dark chocolate, sugar and salt. Whisk until foamy. OR alternately use an immersion blender to mix completely. Strain if necessary. Serve immediately warm. OR chill and reheat as needed for up 5 days.

Yay! Click HERE for a printable pdf of the recipe above.

insta-living // take a megabite

I’m 30, and I feel so alive. // Tofu Bahn Mi, hell yes.
Elliot is my sunshiny bff. // Veggie Taco Brother Brunch 

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Falafel Sliders (vegan)

by Megan on January 12, 2015

Vegan Falafel Sliders // take a megabite

In Memphis my bf and I went to a restaurant called Slider Inn (ahem). And we split a falafel slider with black bean hummus. Basically, what we have here. I thought it was a super-great idea! And I knew I wanted to eat them when I got home.

So I made my usual slider bun, the vegan remix, and Minimalist Baker’s falafel, and a thrown-together-no-big-deal black bean hummus.

Falafel // take a megabite

P.S. I’m doing this casual vegan January thing. And by January, I mean, until my friend’s birthday later in the month that will be pizza and beer everywhere. (I’m lookin’ at YOU, Katie.) And by vegan, I mean, I had to get my eating in check. I can’t live my life eating pie after donuts. AKA vacation eating. BUT this doesn’t mean I’m eating anything I don’t like, and I can still have cinnamon rolls, so what’s the big deal, right? I feel pretty good about it.

Falafel // take a megabite

Falafel Sliders
Recipe adapted from Minimalist Baker

Ingredients:

falafel –

  • 3-4 T oat flour (ground from rolled oats)
  • 4 cups stemmed and torn collard greens
  • 1 (15.5 oz) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 T tahini
  • juice from 1/2 a lemon
  • 1/2 t cumin
  • sea salt + black pepper

for sliders –

  • vegan brioche slider buns, recipe below
  • cucumber slices
  • black bean hummus, recipe below

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Make oat flour by pulsing a handful of rolled oats in a food processor until almost fine. Set aside.
  3. Add collard greens, chickpeas, garlic, tahini, lemon juice, cumin, salt and pepper to the food processor and pulse and puree until combined. Transfer to a bowl. Stir in oat flour until thick enough to handle. Taste and season as needed.
  4. Using a 1/4 cup measuring cup and scoop out falafel. Form it into patties and place on the prepared baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes in the hot oven, flipping halfway through bake-time. Serve on vegan buns with a cucumber slice and black bean hummus.

Black Bean Hummus // take a megabite

Eat it by the spoonful, live your LIFE.

Black Bean Hummus

Ingredients:

  • 1 (15.5 oz.) can black beans, rinsed and drained + more  if needed to thicken
  • 2 T tahini
  • juice from 1/2 a lemon
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 T olive oil
  • heaping 1/2 t cumin
  • salt + pepper
  • 1/2 cup walnuts

Directions:

  1. Combine all the ingredients except walnuts in a food processor except walnuts and process until smooth. Add walnuts to thicken. Add additional beans if necessary to thicken. Taste and season as needed.

Vegan Falafel Sliders // take a megabite

Cookie-sized burgs.

Vegan”Brioche” Slider Buns
Recipe adapted from here

  • 1 cup water
  • 3 T almond milk
  • 1 package (2 t) active dry yeast
  • 2 1/2 T sugar
  • 1 flax egg (1 T ground flax seeds + 2 T water)
  • 3 cups bread flour
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 t salt
  • 2 1/2 T coconut oil melted + more for brushing
  • sesame seeds (optional)

Directions:

  1. In a glass measuring cup, combine 1 cup water and almond milk. Microwave for 10 seconds spurts until warm, about 30 seconds total. Whisk in the yeast and sugar. Let stand until foamy, about 5-10 minutes. Meanwhile, make the flax egg by whisking ground flax seeds and water and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk flours with salt. Add melted coconut oil and rub into flour between your fingers, making crumbs. Pour in the yeast mixture and flax egg. Stir until a soft dough forms. Scrape dough onto a clean, well-floured counter and knead, scooping dough up, slapping it on the counter and turning it, until smooth and elastic, about 8 to 10 minutes.
  3. Shape dough into a ball. Place in a medium bowl sprayed with cooking spray, turning once to coat. Top with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk, 1 to 2 hours.
  4. Line a baking sheet or two with parchment paper. Divide dough into 8 equal parts (4-ish ounces a piece) or a bunch of 1.5 oz slider buns. Gently roll each into a ball and arrange 2-3 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Cover loosely with a tea towel and let buns rise in a warm place for 1 to 2 hours.
  5. Preheat oven to 400° with rack in center. Brush melted coconut oil over the buns. Sprinkle with sesame seeds if ya’ feel like it. Bake, rotating baking sheets halfway through baking, until tops are golden brown, about 15 minutes for big buns or 7-10 minutes for slider buns. Transfer to a rack to cool completely.

Yay! Click HERE for a printable pdf of the recipes above.

Insta-living // take a megabite

Chocolate makes everything better and so do succulents
Vegan “brioche”?! Shut the front door.

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Months of Megabites (2014)

by Megan on January 9, 2015

Months of Megabites (2014) // take a megabite

January Chocolate Peanut Butter Cereal Milk Ice Cream of my Dreams
February Toasted Marshmallow and Salted Caramel Cookie Bars
Plus The 6th Annual Valentine’s Brunch Party

Months of Megabites (2014) // take a megabite

March Single Lady French Toast
April Feta, Tomato and Bell Pepper Quiche with a Polenta Crust
Plus I went to Florida!

Months of Megabites (2014) // take a megabite

May Roasted Strawberry Ice Pops
June Chickpea Sliders on Roasted Beet Buns
Plus My Top 5 Summer Essentials + I went to San Francisco (Again!)

Months of Megabites (2014) // take a megabite

July Sour Cherry Fro-Yo Ice Pops
August Strawberry Moscow Mules
Plus I went to Chicago!

Months of Megabites (2014) // take a megabite

September Nutella Stuffed Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
October Vanilla Bean, Brown Sugar, & Cinnamon Swirl Whole Wheat Bread
Plus I recapped my Betty Crocker Pie Sundae Social + I went to Cleveland! + I made dinner with Stella Artois

Months of Megabites (2014) // take a megabite

November Cocoa Pebble Cereal Milk Pudding
December Veggie Burgers and Sweet Potato Fries
Plus A Thanksgiving Recap and Bunny Resolutions

I’d call 2014 the year of cereal milk everything, popsicles and Moscow Mules. Excited about what this year will be about!

P.S. You can peruse a few past years here: 2013, 2012, 2011

{ 2 comments }

Christmas 2014 – A Recap

by Megan on January 7, 2015

Christmas 2014 - A Recap // take a megabite

I like my Christmas to be filled with snacks, cocktails and Home Alone. And this year it was just that! I bought my boyfriend an Instax camera so we took plenty of practice photos figuring out how it works and stuff, and then my parents came into town just in time to make my holiday even better!

Christmas 2014 - A Recap // take a megabite

I’m crazy about Belvour. I mean, these sparkling drinks taste like magic. I picked up a bottle for Christmas toasting. Elliot got a new collar and promptly napped in it, and I made cinnamon rolls because, let’s be real… it’s not the holidays without them.

Christmas 2014 - A Recap // take a megabite

For breakfast I roasted asparagus and sandwiched them in Croque Monsiers, and was so excited about how easy/delish they were! My mom and I baked some HUGE Brown Butter Nutella Stuffed Chocolate Chunk Cookies to pass out to our favorites, and also because it’s just not a mom visit without us baking together.

We rounded out with some salmon sliders, Funfetti Salad, and me falling asleep to Elf. Basically, the holidays were saved this year with a picnic basket necklace and snacking galore!

{ 7 comments }

Savory Parfaits with Cheddar Bunnies

by Megan on January 5, 2015

Savory Chicken Salad Parfait // take a megabite

If I bring my lunch to work, I like it in a jar. Preferably layered real cute-like. Good-lookin stacked salads make for a fun desk lunch. Way more fun than handfuls of granola and granola bars and weird snacks from the basement store that also sells enchiladas with fries on the side. (I ain’t mad at that.)

Savory Chicken Salad Parfait // take a megabite

My favorite chicken salad is creamy with Greek yogurt and whipped goat cheese. No mayo in sight. That stuff creeps me out, ya know? I only like it if it’s called aioli and has artichokes in it. Man… I’m sounding real high-maintenece in this post… but I bet some of you can relate!

So I like to make up a batch of this chicken salad and layer it in a jar with slivered almonds, spinach, tomatoes, and cheddar bunnies. Follow your heart and add some avocado. Maybe cucumber. Go crazy and toss some roasted red peppers or chick peas in there. This salad is your oyster, or your lunch, or your new favorite, maybe?

Savory Chicken Salad Parfait // take a megabite

Savory Parfaits with Cheddar Bunnies
Recipe developed for Annie’s Homegrown

chicken prep:

  • 2 chicken breasts
  • marinate: juice from 1 lemon, salt, pepper, 1/4 cup olive oil

chicken salad:

  • 2 1/2 cups cubed cooked chicken
  • 6 oz goat cheese
  • 1/4 cup organic greek yogurt
  • salt/pepper
  • juice from 1/2 a lemon
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 T fresh chives
  • cherry tomatoes
  • spinach
  • slivered almonds
  • cheddar bunnies

Directions:

  1. Marinate chicken in lemon juice, salt, pepper and olive oil for 30 minutes. Meanwhile preheat your oven to 350F. Transfer chicken to a greased foil-lined baking sheet. Bake until cooked though (20-30 minutes depending on thickness). Cool completely. Chill for an hour or overnight. Cube.
  2. Stir cubed chicken together with goat cheese, organic greek yogurt, salt, pepper, lemon juice, garlic and chives. Layer in a jar or cup with spinach, cherry tomatoes, slivered almonds and cheddar bunnies. Serve!

Yay! Click HERE for a printable recipe.

Full disclosure: I was given payment from Annie’s Homegrown to develop and post this tasty recipe. While this is true, all the opinions above are my own. I really think we should live our lives with bunnies in our savory snacks. So, thanks so much for supporting the sponsors that help make this blog of mine possible.

Insta-living // take a megabite

Woodsy fun from my sista // Elliot is my BFF // Stollen from Nicole

{ 12 comments }

Bunny Resolutions // Cheers to 2015!

by Megan on December 23, 2014

Bunny Resolutions // take a megabite

I smile about you guys and Elliot the pup every day.

Bunny Resolutions // take a megabite

More Honey Bunnies and salads, right?

Bunny Resolutions // take a megabite

Edible sunsets are cool too.

Bunny Resolutions // take a megabite

Let’s really hang out.

Bunny Resolutions // take a megabite

I’m going to New Orleans and Nashville soon! Yay!

Bunny Resolutions // take a megabite

That deer really does pull that tie off ever so effortlessly.

Bunny Resolutions // take a megabite

Picnics are my kinda adventure.

Bunny Resolutions // take a megabite

All the Zinnias and Poppies in my neighborhood forever and always.

Full disclosure: I was given payment from Annie’s Homegrown to post this resolution biz While this is true, all the opinions above are my own. I really think we should all enjoy the moment and compliment cool peeps. So, thanks so much for supporting the sponsors that help make this blog of mine possible.

{ 12 comments }

Super Cheesy Potato Gratin

by Megan on December 17, 2014

Super Cheesy Potato Gratin // take a megabite

But for real… how do you say “gratin”? Does it rhyme with rotten? Is it more like afghan, but French-ish and without the “f”? Honestly, when I was telling people what I was making I felt like a weirdo. Like when you read a word a bunch but never say it out loud so when you do realize you don’t really know how to say it after all.

CG1-blog

But silly pronunciation aside, this gratin isn’t even rotten! It’s so good. It might take a long time to bake, but that’s what winter’s for right? Warming the house with the oven and living your life?

Oh! Keep in mind when making this that there’s the option to stir the cheese sauce into the potatoes and transfer to the dish. That’s totally up to you. It’ll still be a cheesy dream that you might want to eat for lunch standing in your dining room where you high-five your dog because this situation is gOOD with a capital OOD.

Super Cheesy Potato Gratin // take a megabite

AND it has cheesy crackers inside and on top. Double the goodness double the texture. And I think the world knows how much little cheesy crackers have a way of tricking you into eating an entire box before the first commercial break in New Girl…

So make this for your next brunch party! Or for with christmas dinner! Just remember to give it time to bake at its leisure. So maybe leave room in the oven for this along with your big roast beast?

cg8-blog

SUPER Cheesy Potato Gratin (serves a crowd)
Recipe developed for Annie’s Homegrown

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup olive oil, plus more to grease the pan
  • salt and pepper
  • 8 T butter 1
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, shredded, plus more for sprinkling
  • 1/4 cup goat cheese
  • 2 cups sharp cheddar + more if you’re feeling cheesy
  • salt + pepper, to taste
  • 2 garlic cloves divided
  • 1/2 chipotle smoked hot pepper
  • 5 sweet potatoes
  • 5 yukon gold
  • 2 cups Annie’s Cheddar Squares smashed into crumbs, plus more for sprinkling

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Brush a large casserole dish with olive oil.
  2. Melt butter over a low heat in a saucepan. Add flour and stir until combined. Stir in milk. When thickened add parmesan, goat cheese, cheddar, salt, pepper, garlic and chipotle smoked pepper. Stir in half of the cracker crumbs.
  3. Turn the burner off and stir until all of the cheese is melted. Transfer to the prepared casserole dish.
  4. Slice potatoes thinly and layer alternately over cheese. Top with crackers and additional parmesan.
  5. Bake for 70-80 minutes or until a fork inserts easily into the potatoes. Feel free to turn the temperature up to 400 and bake until done.

Yay! Click HERE for a printable pdf of the recipe above.

Full disclosure: I was given payment from Annie’s Homegrown to post this recipe. While this is true, all the opinions above are my own. Potatoes and cheese are one of the best combos ever! So, thanks so much for supporting the sponsors that help make this blog of mine possible.

Insta-living // take a megabite

Roux-d boy // Tempura oreos!
Treasures from the cake shop // Prop pasta

{ 7 comments }

S’mores Hot Cocoa

by Megan on December 15, 2014

S'mores Hot Cocoa // take a megabite

This weekend needed a little bit of hot cocoa. Most of it was so great! But sometimes when your pup pee-walks over your shoe and then poops in your car the only thing to do is drink hot cocoa by your borrowed pink christmas tree with your new magazine and just muster up a mental fireplace to complete the picture.

S'mores Hot Cocoa // take a megabite

But mostly you guys… graham cracker honey marshmallows?! These s’mores-ify the heck out of this super rich and chocolatey cocoa. AND the scraps leftover from after I cut them into bunny tails (NOT flowers) were totes blended up into the cocoa. So the truth is, you can’t these marshmallows (not that you’d even want to).

I’m already planning on making a version of these hot cocoas all mini-like with BIG marshmallows for Christmas dessert. Topping them with a teeny forest and bunny skewers is obvz happening too.

S'mores Hot Cocoa // take a megabite

Honey Graham Marshmallows
Recipe developed for Annie’s Homegrown

Ingredients:

  • 2 t or 1 packet powdered gelatin
  • 1/3 cup cold water (for gelatin blooming)
  • 1/4 cup water (for syrup)
  • 1/4 cups organic cane sugar
  • 1/2 cup organic local honey
  • 1 vanilla bean, scraped (or 1 1/2 t vanilla)
  • 1/2 t ground cinnamon
  • 1 T confectioners’ sugar, plus more for sprinkling
  • 4 whole Annie’s Homegrown Honey Graham Crackers, crushed

Directions:

  1. Lightly spray an 8-inch pan with cooking spray, or brush with oil. Bloom gelatin in 1/3 cup cold water for 10 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile heat the remaining 1/4 cup water with cane sugar and honey together until boiling. Allow to boil for 1 minute. Add to bloomed gelatin and stir until mixed. Beat with an electric mixer until lightened in color and voluminous. Mix in the vanilla bean or extract and cinnamon.
  3. Sprinkle the bottom of the greased pan with graham cracker crumbs. Top with marshmallow. Dust with powdered sugar. Allow to set for several hours (or overnight) before cutting into bunny tails.  Reserve scraps for hot cocoa.

S'mores Hot Cocoa // take a megabite

S’mores Hot Cocoa ( serves 4+)
Recipe developed for Annie’s Homegrown

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups organic whole milk
  • 2 cups organic 2% milk
  • 8 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 4 oz. milk chocolate, finely chopped
  • tiny pinch of kosher salt
  • 1/2 t ground cinnamon
  • marshmallow scraps (melted in)
  • 2 whole Annie’s Homegrown Honey Graham Crackers, crushed

Directions:

  1. Place the whole milk in a saucepan with the chocolate. Whisk over medium low until the chocolate is melted. Add remaining milk and warm throughout. Add salt, cinnamon and marshmallow scraps.
  2. Using an emersion blender (or transfer to a  blender before too warm and then rewarm in the pot) blend until smooth. Serve in graham cracker-rimmed mugs* with honey graham marshmallows and bunny skewers**.

*Dip mug rims in water and then in crumbs.
** Using peanut butter or chocolate hazelnut spread, attach bunnies to skewers. Place in the freezer until time to serve.

Yay! Click HERE for a printable pdf of the recipes above.

Full disclosure: I was given payment from Annie’s Homegrown to post this recipe. While this is true, all the opinions above are my own. S’mores-ifying things is one of my favorite pastimes! So, thanks so much for supporting the sponsors that help make this blog of mine possible.

Insta-Living // take a megabite

My favorite gingerbread cookie dough // Leisure time livin’
These BLONDIES tho // Breakfast dreams

{ 14 comments }