Chick pea quinoa salad

I just love the blue-turquoise of this bowl! And, of course, the salad in it. This chick pea quinoa salad was inspired by a salad I ate years ago in Ontario on a road trip.

It’s vegan and gluten-free and technically grain-free, since quinoa is a member of the plant family (I only learned that this year!).

It’s also easy to prepare this salad, which is served cold – it really is low-maintenance! And it’s packed with protein, so it’s a solid contribution for potentially non-diet*-friendly potlucks.



  • 1 cup of quinoa
  • 1 cup of chick peas (dried, soaked and cooked OR rinsed and drained from a BPA-free can)
  • 1 handful of dried cranberries
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 tbsp (or less) of maple syrup


  1. Cook the quinoa. There should be instructions on the bag, but normally it’s 2 parts water to 1 part quinoa.
  2. Drain the cooked quinoa and mix in a bowl with chick peas, cranberries, squeezed lemon and a dash of maple syrup.

Ready to serve!

*Please note that by diet, I am always referring to “the kinds of food a person eats.”


Lentils with tomato sauce and spices

When I first tasted this recipe, I knew I had found a new love. David Rocco gets the credit for the original recipe. I couldn’t see myself eating the lentils without tomato sauce, and so the following infallible recipe was born:


  • 1 cup of dried lentils
  • 2 cups of tomato sauce (see recipe here, but exclude the Yves veggie ground)
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 dab of olive oil
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 pinch of rosemary
  • 1 pinch of chili flakes
  • 1 pinch of salt


  1. Boil the lentils for 20 minutes to give them a head start.
  2. Once you hit that 20-minute mark, heat olive oil, garlic, onions, rosemary and chili flakes in a large pan (you can opt for a pot if you wish).
  3. After the onions start sizzling, add the tomato sauce to the pan. A minute later, add the lentils (no need to drain them but it’s up to you).
  4. Simmer for 20 minutes or until lentils taste about right. Add salt for flavour.
  5. Buon appetito!

Serves 4-5 large servings

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cooking time: 40 minutes


Crazy for quinoa recipe (I promise it tastes unbelievably good every time)

This quinoa/couscous recipe tastes unbelievably good every time I make it. It makes a tasty side dish or a nutritious, easy-to-make contribution to any potluck.

Tip: Quinoa is one of the richest non-meat sources of protein. This recipe works just as deliciously with quinoa replacing couscous.

I promise you it tastes SO good. (Credit: iStock photography)


  • 1/2 cup quinoa or couscous
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cube vegetable stock
  • tomato, diced (handful)
  • orange and yellow pepper, diced (handful)
  • 3 stems of green onions, chopped (Tons. I mean, a handful)
  • black olives, sliced
  • feta cheese
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • lemon, squeeze juice for flavour


  1. Quinoa cooks at a ratio of 2:1 water to quinoa. Set 1 cup of water to boil with 1/2 a cube of vegetable stock. Once water reaches boiling point, add 1/2 cup of quinoa. Cover and cook on medium for 15 minutes (or follow directions on the quinoa’s packaging). Then turn off the burner and let the quinoa rest; it will soak up most of the water to reach a comfy point of fluffiness.
  2. Meanwhile, chop desired vegetables.
  3. Pour quinoa into container and drizzle with olive oil and lemon juice. Stir these ingredients together.
  4. Add chopped vegetables. Then sprinkle with desired amount of feta cheese and black olives.
  5. Refrigerate and consume. I swear it tastes delicious every time!

Serves 2 (add 1/4 cup of quinoa for every hunry eater)

Daily food group servings
Grain: 1
Fruits&veg: 1
Alternatives: 0
Dairy: 1/2


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Vegetarianism in literature: Christopher Paolini’s Eldest book

After slowly reading Christopher Paolini’s Eragon over the course of a year (the second half is gripping but the first half takes a while to get through), and then rereading it a couple years later so that I could remember what was going on in its sequel, Eldest, I have adopted a steady reading pace and am quite happily engrossed in the series.

While reading Eldest over my lunch break, I came across an interesting perception of vegetarianism. Eragon learns that while dwelling with the elves (not much given away there), he will not be eating meat, as the elves do not hunt animals. Eragon, having grown up on a farm, finds this news difficult to digest (Aha! Get it?).

However, as Eragon learns to visit the minds of animals–to share their thoughts, feelings and experiences–he finds that as much as he craves meat (he even kills two rabbits and is about to dig in), he can no longer consume it. He explains to Saphira, his dragon companion, that having felt as the rabbit does, he equates the action to eating himself. He feels one with the rabbit, and he does not wish to cause it unnecessary suffering. He understands its fight for life and as a more intelligent being, can resist his impulse to prey on the weak. Saphira asks would you resist all your desires? And he replies only those he deems harmful.

Eragon and Saphira agree to disagree, as Saphira is a hunter and relies upon meat, unable to live off a strictly plant diet. Eragon and Saphira understand that Eragon makes this decision for himself, and he neither enforces it upon anyone else nor judges them for choosing to eat meat. Saphira points out it is the order of life to eat animals, but Eragon simply cannot go back to the meat he so craves, now that he knows how the rabbit feels and has been inside its mind.

That is how I feel. If presented with a pig or a pork chop, I pick the pig every time. This is a decision I make for myself, not for anyone else, but for me. I remember when I became vegetarian, I was extremely surprised to hear that some choose this diet for the very reason of being healthy. What? Hadn’t the popular reaction to my news been a creased forehead above a pair of lips demanding, “But where will you get your protein?”

Popular reasons for adopting a vegetarian diet: a desire not to kill or eat animals, a healthy lifestyle, to be more environmentally friendly, or perhaps some other reason (some stomachs are uncomfortable digesting meat, I heard recently). What was your reason, or your friend’s reason, for becoming vegetarian?

Whatever the reason, we remember that this decision is made for ourselves, and just as we wish for our diet to be respected, so should we respect the diets of others.


Healthy Veggie wants your delicious and healthy recipes. Post a comment telling us about your meal and its ingredients. The winning recipe creator will receive an email asking for instructions and after trying out the recipe, I will create a blog post featuring your recipe and crediting you.

Don’t forget this is a vegetarian blog with a focus on being healthy.

The deadline for recipe posts is Wednesday, March 31. You may post up to three recipes. Bon appétit!