Copycat Panda Express Chow Mein

Copycat Panda Express Chow Mein - Five More Bites
This was a super simple, super tasty recipe from Eat Cake for Dinner.
  • 1/2 c. soy sauce 
  • 2 Tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, grated
  • 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, grated
  • ground black pepper, to taste
  • 4 Tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 boxes 14 oz Chinese Style Lo Mein Noodles
  • 1 1/3 cups celery, chopped diagonally
  • 1 medium onion, thinly sliced
  • 4 cups (heaping) cabbage, chopped
  1. In a small bowl combine soy sauce, brown sugar, garlic, ginger and black pepper; set aside.  
  2. Start water to boil for noodles.
  3. Heat oil in a large wok or skillet.  Add celery and onion and saute for several minutes until onions become soft and transparent.  
  4. Cook Lo Mein noodles according to directions on the box.
  5. Add cabbage to onion and celery, then saute another few minutes until soft.  Add cooked noodles and soy sauce mixture then heat for an additional 2-3 minutes or until noodles are heated through.  Serve immediately.  

Serves: 8


S’more Rice Krispie Treats

Cocoa Krispie S'mores Treats CopyAdapted from the Kellog’s Rice Krispie recipe, this doubled recipe will make the treats extra thick! I used the Kellog’s brand Rice Krispies, but you can use generic if you prefer. Though I don’t recommend using generic marshmallows or graham crackers. To crush the crackers, I use an unopened package and just give it a few squeezes with my fingers to get chunky pieces, not crumbs.


  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 packages (10 oz.) Miniature Marshmallows
  • 12 cups cocoa crispies cereal
  • 8 regular size graham crackers, crushed
  • 3/4 cup miniature semi-sweet chocolate morsels


1. In a large microwave-safe bowl heat butter and 20 oz marshmallows on high for 2+ minutes stirring after one minute. The goal is to get everything melted and stirred together, but only just. Over melting will result in stiff marshmallows and too-crunchy treats. Stir until smooth. Microwave cooking times may vary.

2. Add cocoa crispies cereal, chocolate morsels, and cracker pieces. Stir until well coated. Gently stir until combined.

3. Using a buttered spatula or wax paper evenly press mixture into 13 x 9 x 2-inch pan coated with cooking spray. Cool. Cut into 2-inch squares. Best if served the same day.

Brown Rice Bowl with Lemongrass, Tofu and Cashews

Brown Rice Bowl with Lemongrass, Tofu and Cashews

It’s been a while and it’s not likely to pick up again any time soon, but this recipe was too tasty to leave off. The Kitchn has provided us with several recipes recently but this one stands out. Tofu is a good for you food that I just haven’t been able to wrap my taste buds around. This cooking method though made it sort of the texture of baked cheese. I love cheese, so this is a positive! Overall it’s a win and I’ll be making it again. So…until the next time…enjoy!

  • 16 ounces extra firm tofu
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons flavorless vegetable oil, such as grape seed
  • 2 onions, thinly slice
  • 3 tablespoons chopped lemon balm
  • 2 teaspoon grated ginger
  • 2 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons lime juice
  • 3 cups cooked brown Basmati rice
  • 1/4 cup cashews, toasted and coarsely chopped


Preheat oven to 350°F.

  1. Rinse and drain tofu. Cut tofu into 1/2-inch thick slices and place between clean kitchen towels (or paper towels). Place a heavy object such as a skillet or cutting board on top to press out excess liquid. Let sit 15 minutes.
  2. Slice tofu into thin-ish rectangles, then in thirds.
  3. Lightly oil a baking sheet and spread the tofu slices evenly on the sheet. Bake for 15 minutes and flip over. Continue baking for about 10-15 minutes until tofu is toasted and chewy. Remove from oven.
  4. Heat vegetable oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add onion, lemon balm, ginger, garlic, soy sauce and red pepper flakes. Cook, stirring frequently, until onions are soft and translucent.
  5. Scrape any browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
  6. Add rice and tofu and stir to combine and heat through.

Remove from heat, stir in cashews and serve.

Pineapple Fried Quinoa

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I met a friend for coffee this morning and she mentioned that she’d recently been introduced to my humble little blog here. She told me she’d enjoyed reading my blurbs and I know that she’s tried a couple recipes as well. It made me realize, not for the first time, that I really need to continue posting here. I miss being able to check into my own archive and find dishes that we’ve all enjoyed and to be honest, I have dozens upon dozens of recipes in need of blogging that we’ve loved over the past few years. So without further explanation, let’s get to a recipe! This one comes from Happy Healthy Life and as you’ve come to expect it’s simple to pull together.

pineapple note: If serving in pineapple boat you will need whole pineapple, if not serving in boat, you just need about 2 cups fresh pineapple.

First Saute:

  • Tofu cut into cubes
  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 tsp tamari
  • fine black pepper
  • 1/2 cup red onion, diced
  • 1 cup mushrooms, sliced

Second Saute:

  • 1 1/2 cup fresh pineapple, diced
  • 4 cups cooked quinoa
  • 1 cup kale, shredded
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast

Pineapple Garnish:

  • 1/2 cup finely diced pineapple
  • 1 Tbsp mint, chopped
  • olive oil


  • 2 Tbsp tahini
  • 3 Tbsp pineapple juice
  • 1 tsp chopped mint


1. Cook the quinoa according to package directions. Once cooked, set aside.

2. Heat the olive oil in a deep saute pan on high then add tofu & allow to sizzle for a minute or so. Add tamari and maple syrup with a generous layer of black pepper. Cook on high 2 minutes on both sides, then add in the mushrooms and onions. Cook until the veggies are tender.

3. Add the quinoa, pineapple, mint, kale & nutritional yeast to the pan & cook for about 3 minutes, moving the quinoa around so it cooks on all sides. A few crisped bits of quinoa is a good thing. Do a quick taste test and add a splash of tamari or maple syrup if needed. Transfer the fried quinoa to a bowl. Set aside.

4. Quickly saute the pineapple garnish. Just brown the edges a bit.

5. Mix your dressing. Set aside.

6. Dish up the fried quinoa, adding the pineapple garnish over top with a few sprigs of fresh mint. Serve with the dressing on top or to the side.

Crunchy Cashew Thai Quinoa Salad with Ginger Peanut Dressing

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As you’ve come to expect, this is another quick & easy dinner.  The scents of the dressing are heavenly and the flavors come together perfectly.  There just isn’t much more that needs to be said about this gorgeous and delish-dish from Ambitious Kitchen (say that three times fast!) except that it makes a lot (serves the five of us {with seconds} plus a couple small lunches the next day).


  • ¾ cup uncooked quinoa
  • 2 cups shredded red cabbage
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • ½ red onion, diced
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • ½ cup cilantro, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup chickpeas
  • ¼ cup green onions, diced
  • ½ cup cashew halves or peanuts (honey-roasted is good)
  • Fresh lime, for a bit of tang


  • ¼ cup all natural peanut butter
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
  • 3 tablespoon soy sauce, gluten-free if desired
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • Water to thin, if necessary


  1. Rinse quinoa with cold water in mesh strainer. In a medium saucepan, bring 1 ½ cups of water to a boil. Add in quinoa and bring mixture to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low and let simmer for 15 minutes or until quinoa has absorbed all of the water. Remove from heat and fluff quinoa with fork; place in large bowl and set aside to cool for about 10 minutes. You should have a little over 2 cups of quinoa.
  2. To make dressing: Add peanut butter and honey to a medium microwave safe bowl; heat in microwave for 20 seconds. Add in ginger, soy sauce, vinegar, sesame and olive oil then stir until mixture is smooth and creamy. If you want a thinner dressing, simply stir in a teaspoon or two of water or olive oil.
  3. Add the dressing to the quinoa.
  4. Fold in cabbage, red pepper, onion, carrots, cilantro & chickpeas into the quinoa. Garnish with cashews or peanuts & green onions. Serve chilled or at room temperature with lime wedges if desired.

Indian Lentil Sauté with Kale and Asparagus

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I’d intended to prepare something different for dinner tonight but couldn’t find the recipe where I thought it was saved.  This dish from, Bev Cooks, was the last thing on my menu for the week and it looked simple enough so I tossed everything together in less than 30 minutes.  My daughter had a friend over for dinner and her family is Indian, so I was secretly pleased when she announced, “this looks exactly like what we eat at home.” – and then proceeded to gobble up every last bite.  Yay me!  I doubled what’s shown below and it made enough for three adults, three teens and a very cute, eight-year-old.


  • 1 cup green lentils
  • 2 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tablespoons freshly minced fresh ginger
  • 1 Tablespoons(or more!) Indian curry powder
  • 1/2 bunch asparagus, sliced into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 bunch kale, chopped
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 lemon
  • coarse salt and freshly ground pepper


  1. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add the lentils and cook until tender, about 25 minutes.
  2. Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium high. Add the onion and sauté until it starts to soften. Add the garlic and ginger and bloom 30 seconds. Add the curry powder and a pinch of salt and pepper. Continue to bloom the spices for another 30 seconds, or until fragrant.
  3. Add the asparagus and sauté until bright green, 2 minutes. Add the kale and continue to sauté until wilted, another 2 minutes.
  4. Drain the lentils and add them to the kale mixture. Toss to combine. Sprinkle with lots of cilantro and a good squeeze of the lemon juice.

Serve with more cilantro and lemon juice!

Baked Blueberry French Toast

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Clean eating is the theme of this recipe & originally, that is what the blogger over at The Gracious Pantry titled it but, seriously, that’s just way too much of a title for something so simple.  Do not, however, let its simplicity fool you into thinking this breakfast-for-dinner is anything except phenomenal.  Not to sound like an advertisement, and only to remind myself, but I used Oroweat Health Nut Bread; it has walnuts and sunflower seeds that seriously put this over the top in my mouth.

Lastly, next time I make this, I’m going full-vegan and omitting the eggs altogether, using 8 bananas (the original recipe calls for 8 egg whites).


  • 6 cups cubed, whole grain bread (I used the entire loaf)
  • 3/4 cup applesauce
  • 5 bananas
  • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons almond extract
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 cups fresh blueberries


  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the applesauce, almond milk, honey, extracts and cinnamon. Using an immersion blender mix until thoroughly combined (you could also mash with something…but mash it well so it coats the bread evenly when poured over top).
  2. Oil a baking dish (about 9 x 13), and fill it with the bread.
  3. Pour the liquid mixture over the bread and allow it to sit for at least 30 minutes, mixing once or twice to be sure all parts of the bread are moistened.
  4. Mix in the blueberries.
  5. Bake the casserole at 350 F. for about 30-45 minutes or until there is no longer any liquid between the bread.  {I baked it (convection oven) for 30 minutes.}
  6. Allow to cool a bit and serve.

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Vegan Enchiladas with Cilantro Avocado Cream Sauce

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Just good food, from Oh She Glows.  That is all.

The recipe below says it’ll make 4 enchiladas, so I doubled it and came out with a full 9×13 dish of enchiladas.


  • 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup sweet potato, chopped (or zucchini)
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 handfuls spinach, chopped
  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • Enchilada sauce (about 2.5 cups)
  • 1 Tablespoon nutritional yeast (optional)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh lime juice, to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder, or to taste
  • 4 whole grain tortilla wraps (I used Food for Life Ezekiel)
  • Cilantro Avocado Cream Sauce, to pour on top (recipe below)
  • Green onion & chopped cilantro, to garnish
Cilantro Avocado Cream Sauce


  • 1 & 1/4 cup avocado flesh
  • 2 Tablespoon water, or more as needed to thin out
  • 2-3 Tablespoon lime juice, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar (optional)
  • 1 cup packed fresh cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Black pepper, to taste
  • Red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper, to taste

Directions for Sauce:

1. In a food processor, process the avocado flesh and water until creamy. Now add in the rest of the ingredients and process until smooth and well blended. Use immediately for best results.

Directions for Enchiladas:

Pre-heat oven to 350*

  1. Pre-cook the sweet potato, by simmering it in a small pot of water for about 5-10 minutes until just tender. Do not overcook. Drain and set aside.
  2. In a large skillet or pot, add 1 Tablespoon oil and bring to medium to low heat. Add in the chopped onion and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring often, until translucent. Add in garlic and reduce heat to low and cook for a couple more minutes. Add the chopped pepper, pre-cooked sweet potato, drained black beans, and chopped spinach. Cook for about 5-7 more minutes on medium-low heat.
  3. Add in your enchilada or pasta sauce. Stir well, and add in your seasonings: nutritional yeast, cumin, fresh lime juice, salt, garlic powder, chili powder – all to taste. Adjust seasonings if necessary. Stir well.
  4. Scoop about 3/4-1 cup of the mixture onto the bottom of your casserole dish and spread out in a thin layer. Scoop about 1/2-3/4 cup of the mixture onto each tortilla and wrap, placing the fold down on the casserole dish. Repeat for the remaining tortillas and leave a bit of filling left to spread over the top.
  5. Bake for 18-20 minutes. Meanwhile, make your Cilantro cream sauce. When enchiladas are cooked, remove from oven and pour the sauce over top. Garnish with chopped cilantro and green onion.

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Savory Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

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In case you haven’t noticed Maynard has stopped eating meat.  Yep.  All meat.  There are many reasons, and factors that went into the decision but I’ll spare you the agonizing details and just continue posting yummy food for you to enjoy.  One day, we may go all-out vegan, but for now we’re still working out the kinks (baking vegan is a challenge when you’re used to using butter and eggs in abundance!)

This recipe comes from Zoe Dawn – it’s simple, filling and somehow, amazingly enough, my kids ate it.  And then?  Went for seconds.  It’s a win win.


  • 1 medium head cabbage
  • 1 cup dry quinoa
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 3 T uncooked brown rice
  • 2 T chopped fresh parsley (2 t dried)
  • 2 t salt
  • 1/2 t pepper
  • 1 banana, mashed
  • 1 3/4 cups plain tomato sauce
  • 1 cup canned tomato chunks
  • 2 T honey


  1. Put the head of cabbage in a pot. Cover with water. Remove the cabbage and bring the water to a boil. Turn off the heat. Submerge the whole head of cabbage in the boiling water and cover. Let sit for 15-20 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, cook the quinoa according to package directions.
  3. In a small skillet, sauté the onion, then turn off heat and add the rice, parsley, salt, pepper, and banana.
  4. When the cabbage is done “cooking”, remove it from the water onto a cookie sheet with sides (to catch any remaining water). Very carefully, remove 12 leaves. Cut the thickest part of center rib out of each leaf, about 1 or 2 inches. There will be a little V in the middle of each leave. Divide the meat filling between the leaves and roll up jelly roll fashion, but tucking in the ends so the filling stays put. Place the rolls in a deep casserole dish.
  5. Pour the tomato sauce, tomato chunks, and honey over the rolls. Cover and bake at 350 for about an hour and a half. Let the rolls set a few minutes before serving.

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