Recipes | Crossroads Community Food Network

Quick Energy Bites

These energy bites can serve as a protein-packed breakfast or healthy snack! They’re quick, easy to make, easy to carry around, and a nutritious alternative to many store-bought granola bars.

Makes approx. 12 bites

Ingredients:

  • ⅔ cup nut butter of choice (peanut butter, almond butter, etc.) OR sunflower seed butter for nut-free option
  • ¼ cup dark chocolate chips
  • ½ cup flaxseed meal
  • ¼ cup sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds (pepinas)
  • 2 Tbsp agave nectar or honey
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup coconut flakes

Directions:

Add all the ingredients to a bowl and mix well.

Roll the mixture into tablespoon-sized balls.

Let sit in the fridge for 15 minutes before serving. The energy bites can be stored in the fridge for up to a week.

Beet Chocolate Cake

This delicious sweet treat by Martha Stewart is a perfect way to use up any beets you may have in your fridge. You can’t taste the beets, but they add a nice pink-red hue to the cake. 

Ingredients:

  • 4 medium beets, peeled, trimmed, and cut into chunks
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3/4 cup warm water (from the boiled beets)
  • 1 tsp pure vanille extract
  • 2 large eggs

Directions:

Cover beets with water in a pot. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer until very tender when pierced with the tip of a sharp paring knife, about 30 minutes. Drain the beets BUT SAVE THE WATER. Puree beets in a food processor until smooth.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk together flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, and 3/4 teaspoon salt in a large bowl. Whisk in eggs, water, oil, vanilla, and 1 1/4 cups beet puree (reserve remaining puree for another use).

Coat a 9-inch round cake pan (3 inches deep) with cooking spray. Line bottom with parchment, and coat with spray. Pour batter into pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 45 minutes. Let cool in pan on a wire rack for 20 minutes. Turn out cake from pan, and discard parchment. Let cool completely, right side up.

Strawberry Spinach Salad

Makes 4 servings

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups of spinach
  • 1 pint strawberries
  • 1 handful mint (chocolate mint works very well, but any mind works for the salad)
  • 1 cup goat cheese (optional)
  • ½ cup sunflower seeds, almonds, or pumpkin seeds (optional)

For the dressing

  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp honey

Directions:

Rinse the spinach and strawberries. In a bowl, add the spinach. Quarter the strawberries and add those to the spinach. Cut the mint. Add the mint to the bowl. If using, add goat cheese or sunflower seeds.

In a jar, add the lemon juice, honey, and olive oil. Shake until creamy. Add dressing to the salad and toss well.

Pesto

Traditionally, the pesto is made with basil, pine nuts, olive oil, parmesan cheese, garlic, salt and pepper. However, there are many delicious alternatives that you can make with other greens and cheese you have in your fridge. It’s good on pasta, on top of toast, or as a dip for your favorite veggies!

Traditional Pesto:

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups basil
  • 4-6 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
  • ⅓-½ cup olive oil
  • ½ cup parmesan cheese
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼-⅓ cup pine nuts

Directions:

Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. If the pesto is too thick, slowly add 1 Tablespoon of water at a time until you have reached your desired consistency.

Variations 1:

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups greens of your choice (kale, chard, & spinach all work well) (you can also use a combination of greens & herbs)
  • 4-6 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
  • ⅓-½ cup olive oil
  • ½ cup parmesan cheese (or feta, asiago, ricotta salata, etc.)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼-⅓ cup nut or seed of your choice (ie. walnut, almond, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, etc.)

Directions:

Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. If the pesto is too thick, slowly add 1 Tablespoon of water at a time until you have reached your desired consistency.

Variation 2:

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup greens of your choice (kale, chard, spinach all work well) (you can also use a combination of greens)
  • ½ cup basil
  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 4-6 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • ½ cup parmesan cheese
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼-⅓ cup sunflower seeds or pepinas

Directions:

Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. If the pesto is too thick, slowly add 1 Tablespoon of water at a time until you have reached your desired consistency.

Rainbow Salad

This colorful salad is a delicious, hearty meal with a delightful blend of flavors.

Ingredients:

  • 2  bunches of kale, torn
  • ½ cup sunflower seeds or pepitas
  • ½ c dried fruit (raisins, blueberries, cranberries, etc.)
  • 1 pint blueberries
  • 1 cup strawberries, quartered
  • 1 cup feta or goat cheese, crumbled
  • 3 bell peppers, diced
  • 3 carrots, diced
  • 1 roasted sweet potato, diced (optional)

Ingredients for the dressing:

  • ½ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp honey

Directions:

Wash the produce. In a bowl, massage the torn kale leaves until tender. Add all the ingredients for the salad to the kale.

In a jar, add the balsamic vinegar, honey, and olive oil. Shake until creamy. Add dressing to the salad and toss well.

Protein-Packed Brownies

These brownies, inspired by Vegan Richa, are a healthier, more filling take on your classic brownies, with more protein and less sugar. They’re easy to make them gluten-free and/or nut-free as well!

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup red lentils
  • 3 TBSP butter OR coconut/canola oil
  • 3 TBSP honey/agave
  • ½ cup chocolate chips
  • ¼ cup sugar or honey
  • ⅓ cup nut butter (cashew, almond, PB, hazelnut); OR sunflower/pumpkin seed butter for nut-free alternative
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • ¼ cup whole wheat flour; OR ¼ cup almond meal PLUS 1 TBSP flaxseed meal for gluten free alternative
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 1 TBSP cocoa powder

Directions:

Line a brownie pan with parchment paper ( I use 8 by 8 inch). Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F/180ºc . (9 by 5 loaf pan also works.)

Rinse the red lentils. Drain and add to a saucepan. Add 1.5 cups of water and cook over medium heat. Cook for 15 to 20 minutes or until the lentils are a bit mushy. Stir once in between. Cool for a few minutes, then drain any excess water from the saucepan (there should be hardly any) and use a fork to make a smooth blend.

Heat honey/agave syrup and oil/butter in a skillet over medium heat. When hot, add chocolate and sugar/honey and mix. Take off heat. Continue to mix until chocolate is melted and well combined.


Add the lentils and the rest of the ingredients to the skillet and stir until a smooth batter forms. Add spices such as cinnamon, or fold in chopped walnuts for variation.


Pour into prepared brownie pan. Sprinkle more chocolate chips to top, if desired. Bake for 34 to 36 minutes. Bake them a bit longer for more set and crispier edges. Check with a toothpick from the center if too soft/wet.


Cool for 15 minutes before slicing and serving. Refrigerate for up to 4 days, freeze for later. The brownie texture improves after refrigeration for a bit.