Vegetarian Taco Dip
The holidays are upon us and there are many parties, events and gigs to attend and prepare for. I was asked to bring an appetizer for our Christmas day gathering and I had very little time to prepare. I was craving something with Mexican flavors so I decided to create a taco dip with the items I had in my pantry and freezer. I ended up using mostly Trader Joe products such as their Vegan refried Beans and my absolute favorites, Pepita Salsa and their Frozen Mexican style roasted corn! We enjoyed the dip with Trader Joe’s Corn Dippers chips! It was a huge success and I thought I should share it as an easy Make Ahead for your next holiday gathering! Enjoy!!
1 can of vegetarian refried beans
1 bag of TJ’s Mexican Style Roasted Corn cooked to package directions (optional)
½ jar of TJ’s Pepita Salsa or any salsa of your choice
1 ½ cups of shredded sharp cheddar cheese
Chopped green onions
Unsweetened Greek Yogurt or Sour Cream
Directions to Make Ahead -
Growing up, I used to hate Thanksgiving foods. I really disliked the taste of turkey (probably a predictor to my vegetarian future), and didn’t care for stuffing and all that jazz. I would basically eat a plate full of mashed potatoes and bread. A few years ago, I was asked to make a dish for my boyfriend’s Thanksgiving celebration. My now husband’s aunt, known as Auntie, requested Sweet Potato Casserole. I have to admit, I wasn’t that excited, because all I could recall about sweet potatoes was a sugary marshmallow mush. I happened upon an AMAZING recipe for Sweet Potato Casserole from Oh She Glows, and it became my FAVORITE Thanksgiving food and I’ve made it every Thanksgiving since! As I was brainstorming creative breakfast make aheads I thought, why not try to recreate that dish for breakfast? I combined creamy and perfectly spiced mashed sweet potatoes with steel cut oatmeal and topped it all with roasted pecans! It was a true recipe WIN! If you like the flavors of Sweet Potato Casserole, you’ll be sure to love this recipe!!
Sweet Potato “casserole” Oatmeal
1 large or 2 small sweet potatoes diced in 1 inch cubes
1 cup of steel cut oats
4 cups of almond or oat milk
1 cup of chopped pecans
2 T butter
½ tsp vanilla
1 -2 T maple syrup (I used 2)
½ tsp cinnamon
Dash of nutmeg
Pumpkin Protein Pancakes
My most favorite recipe for pancakes is actually one of the healthiest versions I have ever come across. These Peanut butter Protein Pancakes from Minimalist Baker have been our go-to ever since I first found the recipe about a year ago. However, when I made them for my family, my sister said she did not like the peanut butter taste. That got me thinking about possible modifications to this recipe. Today I found a solution that we loved, I adapted this recipe to eliminate the nut butter and added … you guessed it, PUMPKIN! :-) Hey, it’s still fall so I’m allowed to eat as much pumpkin as possible right? These still contain protein from the ground up oat flour and the added egg! They are also gluten free, and CAN be made vegan if you prefer. These pancakes last 3 days in the fridge, and are great reheated for your Make ahead of Monday needs!
½ cup of almond milk
½ tsp apple cider vinegar
1 egg whisked (or one flax egg if making vegan)
1 Tbsp maple syrup
½ tsp vanilla extract
1 Tbsp pumpkin puree
1 Tbsp coconut oil or other vegetable oil
½ tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
¾ cup of oat flour (to make your own, add rolled oats to a blender and blend on high until flour forms)
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
¼ tsp cinnamon
Directions (makes 6 pancakes)
Recipe inspired and adapted from Minimalist baker
This recipe is not only perfect for a Make Ahead but also for the holidays! It’s easy to assemble and adaptable and can be made ahead two ways (see recipe for details). I used my favorite combinations of veggies but feel free to be creative! I was excited when I found soy free veggie by Hilary’s sausage to add some extra flavor to this vegetarian casserole. I hope you enjoy!!
1. Grease an 8x8 oven safe casserole dish with oil and set aside.
2. Melt some butter or oil in a frying pan and line the pan with your hashbrowns. Season them with a dash of salt and pepper and let them get slightly brown before adding them to your 8x8 casserole dish. Wipe your frying pan of any residue.
3. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
4. Add and heat a bit of oil to your frying pan then add and lightly saute the diced green peppers, baby portabella, and green onions for 1-2 minutes. Season with a dash of salt and pepper and then add to your casserole dish on top of the hashbrowns.
5. Add your cooked and crumbled veggie sausage to your casserole dish.
6. Crack 6 eggs in a clean bowl along with the milk and ¼ teaspoon of salt and ⅛ teaspoon of pepper and whisk.
7. Add the whisked eggs to your casserole dish.
8. Sprinkle the extra sharp white cheddar cheese on top
9. Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes or until the eggs are set.
This casserole will last in the fridge for 4 days OR can be assembled and baked the next morning.
I have to admit, I am not always organized and on top of my goals. I particularly have trouble on those weekends that are packed with gigs, and family events. This is my go-to recipe for those weekends! The key ingredient is the amazing Roasted Potatoes with Peppers and Onions from Trader Joes. I couldn't believe how flavorful they were on their own, and when added with all of the other ingredients in this recipe, they shine! I recently started adding a dollop of Trader Joes Pepita Salsa to top the dish! This is completely optional, and of course you can add your own favorite salsa as well. I hope you enjoy!
Ingredients (makes four bowls)
12 ounces of Trader Joe’s Roasted Potatoes with pepper and onions
½ cup of shredded white sharp cheddar cheese divided
4 tablespoons of Trader Joe’s Pepita salsa (or any salsa) divided
Salt & Pepper to taste
I am a music teacher, professional musician and a vegetarian. I created this site with the mission to share recipes that make life a little more organized, and enjoyable!