African Peanut Stew (Plant-Based) – Instant Pot

Wholesome and spicy, with all the good Morrocan flavors.  This African Peanut Stew is made in a pressure cooker – I used my Instant Pot.  It is oil-free, vegan, and full of flavor!  The African Peanut Stew is made with wholesome vegetables such as sweet potatoes, carrots, onions, peppers, and canned tomatoes.  Add in some spices, and creamy peanut butter and you’ve got a rich, flavorful stew.

african peanut stew in white bowl


I first found an African Peanut Stew recipe on the Clean Food Dirty Girl Website.  If you haven’t visited that site, you should.  Lot’s of wisdom there…and crazy delicious food!  I tweaked the recipe for my family’s taste and for the Instant Pot too:) I hope you enjoy!

If you like this recipe try my Creamy Vegetable Pasta Soup (Instant Pot), my Best Vegan Mac and Cheese, or my  Veggie Lentil Soup – all made in the Instant Pot!


  • Start by measuring out and mixing the spices and set aside so they will be ready to go. Please note, the recipe calls for 1/4-1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper.  Unless you know for sure that you like it hot, start with 1/4 teaspoon.  You can always add in more after it cooks.
spiced for African Peanut Stew
Aren’t these spices beautiful! Go ahead and mix them up now!
  • Next, cut the onion and the carrots into bite-sized pieces.
  • Put the cut onion and carrots in the Instant Pot (or another pressure cooker) along with some vegetable broth and select the sauté function to get the cooking process started.
  • If your pressure cooker does not have a sauté function, you will want to do it on the stove top.  This ensures that you won’t have crunchy veggies. Watch the bottom of the pan and add a little more vegetable broth if it starts to burn.  If the bottom of your pan has any burn or scorch, it may not come to pressure.


  • While the onions and carrots are sautéing, you can prepare the bell pepper and sweet potatoes. Don’t let the onion/carrot mixture cook for more than five minutes though.  If you are taking longer than that to cut the other vegetables, turn off the Instant Pot.
peeled sweet potato for African Peanut Stew
Roughly peel your sweet potato.
sweet potato cut for African Peanut Stew
Cut the sweet potato into slices, then strips, and dice.
  • Add in the cut sweet potatoes, bell pepper, minced garlic, and ginger.  One short-cut I almost always take is to use jarred/packaged already minced garlic and ginger.  Especially ginger – it’s just freakishly hard to peel and mince properly.
garlic and ginger for African Peanut Stew
Use jarred ginger and garlic for ease of preparation.
  • Continue with adding the spices, and crushed tomatoes and stir around to mix well.

Finally the Star of the Show: The Peanut Butter!

natural peanut butter
Use a natural peanut butter that is oil-free and sugar-free.

This is called African PEANUT Stew for a reason – it’s full of peanut-y goodness.  Because I don’t want to use added processed oils, I use peanut butter that is basically peanuts and a little sea salt. (Note – this recipe does indeed contain fat, the peanuts.  This is a natural fat and not an added processed oil that you can get with most peanut butter.)

Measuring out peanut butter can be messy – plus, when some is left in the measuring cup, I’m never sure I’m getting it all. Here is a trick my mamma taught me. You can measure peanut butter easily and with less mess by using the displacement method. First, get a liquid measuring cup and fill it with 1 cup of liquid. I prefer to use the broth that will be going into my soup, but you can use water. Next, scoop out the peanut butter and put in the measuring cup until the liquid level measures 1 ¾ cup. Voila! Pour that into your soup (or just the peanut butter if you used water) and smile about not having to clean sticky peanut butter out of a measuring cup.

Plop the peanut butter in the broth. It can be an easy way to measure it out.
Measure out the broth first, then add peanut butter till it measures up to the total for both.
Melted peanut butter in broth.
Microwave the peanut butter along with some of the broth so that it melts and mixes in easier.

For this recipe, we will be microwaving the peanut butter along with some of the broth and mix well so that it easily pours over the other ingredients already in the Instant Pot.  Finish adding all broth/peanut butter.


Honestly, I have never used a pressure cooker other than (affiliate link) the Instant Pot.  Why would I? I have my Instant Pot and love it so!  It is multi-functional and produces consistent results Since I have never used another brand, I will assume you know how to use yours.  The following directions are for the Instant Pot 6qt.  You could use the 8 qt without problems.  (If you have a 3qt you might need to do an ingredient adjustment.  Read your owner’s manual and do not fill to full capacity or it won’t come to pressure.)

Instant Pot set for 10 minutes for African Peanut Stew


Close the lid, making sure the vent is closed.  Use the manual mode and set the timer for 10 minutes.  It will take some time to come to pressure. Once it is finished and the timer goes off, do a natural release for 20 minutes.  If it hasn’t finished releasing pressure by then, give it a little help by carefully opening the vent to finish releasing the pressure.



Open the lid and add in 5 ounces of fresh baby spinach. Give it a stir and the spinach will wilt.african peanut stew with spinach in instant pot

Put the peanuts in a baggie and crush with a rolling pin. You will still want some big nutty chunks so the rolling pin method is perfect!




I like to top off this flavorful African Peanut Stew with some crushed peanuts for good measure! Use a rolling pin, it’s easier that way

rolling pin crushing peanuts


This African Peanut Stew is perfect for meal prep.  I like to add in the nuts at the last minute though and so portion them into little containers. 

african peanut sew meal prep
All meal-prepped and ready to go. I like to keep my peanuts n a separate little container so that they will retain their crunch.





I took my African Peanut Stew to a work pot luck the other day.  You MUST MUST MUST disclose that this recipe contains peanuts!  I think I did a pretty good job of it:

African Peanut Soup
Always inform people you share with that this recipe contains peanuts.
african peanut soup

African Peanut Stew - Instant Pot (Vegan)

This African Peanut Stew is made in the Instant Pot Pressure Cooker.  It is plant-based and is processed-oil free.  It uses sweet potatoes, carrots, onions,  and bell pepper.  The recipe includes Moroccan spices and creamy peanut butter.
4.63 from 8 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Vegan African Peanut Stew Instant Pot
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Natural Release: 20 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories: 225kcal
Author: Cindy Rainey



  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/4 -1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper depending on taste -
  • 1/4 teaspoon black ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt

All Other Ingredients

  • 1 medium yellow onion diced
  • 2 carrots diced
  • 1 red bell pepper about 1 cup
  • 2 sweet potatoes peeled and cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 Tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons minced ginger peel or used prepared
  • 28 ounces crushed tomatoes canned
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure maple syrup
  • 3/4 cup peanut butter natural and creamy
  • 2 1/2 cup vegetable broth more to sauté onions and carrots
  • 5 ounces fresh baby spinach
  • 3/4 cup chopped peanuts for garnish


  • Mix together spices and set aside.
  • Cut onion and carrots into bite-sized pieces.
  • Line the Instant Pot with a small amount of vegetable broth and sauté onions and carrots until they begin to soften - no more than 5 minutes.  Watch the bottom of the pan and add more broth so that it doesn't stick.  Turn off the pot.
  • While you are sautéing the onions and carrots, cut the other vegetables into bite-sized pieces.
  • Add the other vegetables, along with the garlic, ginger and spices and stir till well mixed and coated. 
  • Add can of tomatoes as well as the maple syrup, stirring to mix well.
  • Melt the peanut butter along with about half of the vegetable broth in the microwave for about 2 minutes.  Stir together and pour on top of the mixture along with the remaining vegetable broth.
  • Close lid and make sure the vent is closed.
  • Use the manual mode and set to 10 minutes high pressure.  It will take a while to come to pressure but will start counting down once it has. 
  • Once the timer has counted down, do a "natural release" and allow the instant pot to sit for about 20 minutes.  After 20 minutes if the pressure has not released, you may finish releasing by carefully opening the vent with an implement of some sort. 

  • Open the lid and stir in the 5 ounces of washed baby spinach.  Top with crushed peanuts if desired. 


  1. You must disclose to anyone you serve this recipe to that it contains peanuts!
  2. Unless you know you like it spicy, start with 1/4 teaspoon cayenne.  After it has cooked, you can always add in a little more. 


Calories: 225kcal | Carbohydrates: 30g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 1092mg | Potassium: 957mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 258.9% | Vitamin C: 58.6% | Calcium: 11.9% | Iron: 19.9%

african peanut soup

Salsa Verde Mexican Casserole – Vegan

This  Salsa Verde Mexican Casserole is vegan and easy to make.  It is full of fresh vegetables, is dairy free, and does not use added oils (except what you will find in the tortillas and if you choose to add vegan butter to the potatoes.   It is super easy to throw together because you use frozen mixed vegetables, jarred salsa verde, boxed mashed potatoes, and canned beans. The only vegetable you will have to cut is your zucchini of choice (I used Mexican Gray Squash).

*Affiliate links – This post will contain Amazon affiliate links.  If you scroll through you will see products I used that you can purchase on amazon.com. If you click on and purchase through one of these links, Veggie Fun Kitchen might receive compensation at no extra cost to you. 


Start by cutting the zucchini into small bite-sized pieces.  My favorite type of zucchini is the Mexican Gray squash.  I like the flavor and the texture when it cooks up.  Give it a try if you haven’t!

zucchini diced for Mexican Casserole
Cut your pieces about the size of a dice or smaller.

Vegetables sautéing for Mexican Casserole



Line the sauté pan with enough vegetable broth to cover the bottom.  We don’t need to cook with added oils! Just watch your pan so that it doesn’t dry up and begin to stick.  Add a little more broth if necessary.  Sauté for about 3 minutes or until the zucchini begins to soften.



Add in the mixed frozen vegetables, and chili beans. Do not drain the chili beans.  You will want that yummy flavored chili sauce!

Frozen mixed vegetables for Mexican Casserole
Use 16 ounces of frozen mixed vegetables
Chili beans for Mexican Casserole
Make sure to use the chili beans/black beans and do not drain.

Add in the onion powder and garlic powder.  Continue sautéing for a few more minutes or until the vegetables are softened and the flavors have mixed. Set aside.


Now start working on the mashed potatoes.  Did you think you would be using mashed potatoes in a Salsa Verde Mexican Casserole?  We use the mashed potatoes along with a “secret ingredient” to give a cheesy flavor to this vegan dish – without having to use the fake oily vegan cheese!  You can use real potatoes if you prefer. But we don’t always have time for that and because this recipe is categorized as Quick and Easy, we used the dehydrated potato flakes.

Mix your mashed potatoes using the directions for four servings. For reference, four servings is 1 1/3 cup potato flakes each. Follow the cooking directions on the package BUT do use vegetable broth instead of water and unsweetened plant milk rather than dairy milk. I did not add in the salt because the recipe is plenty salty as is – but do adjust for your taste preference. You can choose to add the vegan butter or not.  I have not found any vegan butter that is oil-free. If you feel you need it for taste, just be aware that you are adding in oil. I use Earth Balance Buttery Spread – but use what you typically use.

And now for the secret ingredient: Nutritional Yeast!  Nutritional yeast is NOT the same as brewer’s or baker’s yeast so DO NOT substitute either of those.  It adds a cheesy tang to your recipe and is really a staple in a plant-based kitchen. In fact, we plant eaters have a nickname for it – NOOTCH!  It can be a little challenging to find.  At the grocery store, I have found it in the “health food” or gluten-free section.  I’ve also found it with the grains…so no real consistency.  I usually just buy mine from Amazon.  It’s cool because I can just ask Alexa to order me some more and she does it lol!

Here are a few different brands of nutritional yeast I’ve used.  Sometimes you have to experiment a little to find the one you like.  Not everyone likes the flavor of nutritional yeast at the beginning.  It can be a learned taste…


Now for the fun part – layering and putting it all together.  This is really more like a lasagna – you need to layer in a particular order for best results.  Just follow along with me and it will be perfect! The directions will be numbered in the printable recipe.

Salsa Verde for Mexican Casserole
I use mild salsa. If you prefer more spice, you can use a medium or hot.



In a 9×13″ casserole dish, spoon about third a jar of salsa verde on the bottom of the pan for the first layer.  Spread it evenly.

Next, lay two tortillas on top – breaking apart to cover the salsa layer.  You will be using about nine 10″ tortillas in the recipe.

Tortillas layered in the pan for Mexican Casserole
Tear the tortillas to form and fully cover a single layer.


Then layer in one half the vegetable mixture. Top again with two more tortillas – again, breaking apart for full coverage.

Tortillas and vegetables layered in the pan for Mexican Casserole
Layer in order according to directions.

Now you carefully drop spoonfuls of the mashed potato mixture on the top of the tortilla layer and press/spread until the tortillas are evenly covered. This is the middle layer and so you are half-way done!Mashed potatoes in Mexican Casserole

Cover the potato with 1/3 jar of salsa, spreading evening, covering with another layer of tortillas, followed by the rest of the vegetables.  Finally, you cover the second vegetable layer with tortillas and top with the remaining salsa.

Salsa Verde Mexican Casserole - easy and vegan



Cover and bake in a 350° oven for 30 minutes.  I let sit for about 10 minutes before cutting into it.  This recipe for Salsa Verde Mexican Casserole makes six generous servings.  You can top with cilantro or some avocado if desired.  This recipe works great for meal prep.  Just portion out into six meal prep containers. 

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Easy Salsa Verde Mexican Casserole - Vegan

Easy Vegan Salsa Verde Mexican Casserole on the plate

Salsa Verde Mexican Casserole - Vegan

This Salsa Verde Mexican Casserole is meat and dairy free. It is full of vegetables and flavor.  It is easy to through together because you use frozen vegetables, jarred salsa and canned beans. 
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: Easy Vegan Salsa Verde Mexican Casserole
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories: 314kcal
Author: Cindy Rainey


Vegetable Layer

  • 1/2 cup vegetable broth you will use more in the potatoes
  • 1 Mexican Gray Squash
  • 16 ounces frozen mixed vegetables
  • 15.5 ounces can chili beans - black beans
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder

Mashed Potato Layer

  • 1 3/4 cup vegetable broth
  • 2 Tablespoons vegan butter do not add if wanting to eat oil-free
  • 3.4 cup plant milk (such as soy or almond) unsweetened
  • 1 1/3 cup potato flakes
  • 3 Tablespoons nutritional yeast

Putting it all Together

  • 20 ounces salsa verde I used mild.
  • 9 10" round tortillas I used whole wheat


  • Preheat oven to 350°

The Vegetable Layer

  • Chop zucchini/Mexican Gray Squash into bite-sized pieces.  Set aside. 
  • Add enough vegetable broth to line the bottom of sauté pan. Sauté zucchini for about 3 minutes or until it begins to soften. Watch the bottom of your pan so that the broth does not dry out or pan begin to stick.  Add more broth if necessary.
  • Add the frozen mixed vegetables, black chili beans, onion and garlic powders.  Do not drain the chili bean liquid/sauce from the can, but add it to the mixture.  
  • Continue sautéing a few more minutes or until vegetables have softened and the flavors have mixed well. Set aside.

The Mashed Potato Layer

  • In a sauce pan, bring vegetable broth, vegan butter (if using) and plant milk to a gentle boil.  Remove from heat.
  • Stir in dehydrated potato flakes and nutritional yeast.  Add salt if desired.

Putting it All Together!

  • Layer and spread in a 9x13" pan in this order:
     1/3 jar of salsa verde,
    two tortillas - tear to fit and cover the salsa layer,
     1/2 vegetable mixture,
     2 more tortillas - tear to fit and cover the vegetable layer,
    mashed potatoes - use all of the potatoes. Carefully spread over vegetable layer,
    1/3 jar of salsa verde,
    2 1/2 tortillas - tear to fit and cover the salsa layer,
    1/2 (remaining) vegetable mixture,
    2 1/2 tortillas - tear to fit and cover the vegetable layer,
    1/3 jar (remaining) salsa verde
  • Cover and bake at 350° for 30 minutes.  Let sit for about 10 minutes before serving.


Calories: 314kcal | Carbohydrates: 46g | Protein: 13g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 1705mg | Potassium: 1159mg | Fiber: 9g | Sugar: 12g | Vitamin A: 103.1% | Vitamin C: 35.6% | Calcium: 22.4% | Iron: 18.1%

Easy Lentil Shepherd’s Pie, Plant-Based

Plant-based cooking can be super challenging with recipes that call for a long list of ingredients and have many steps.  It doesn’t have to be though.  As long as you are willing to take a few simple short cuts and use a few canned/boxed ingredients, your life can still be easy and your food still delicious.  This Easy Lentil Shepherd’s Pie is just that: easy AND delicious! This is a recipe for which you won’t even have to chop a single vegetable!

Easy Lentil Shepherd's Pie

*Affiliate Links* – This post will contain Amazon Affiliate links.  This means that if you click on and purchase through one of these links, Veggie Fun Kitchen may receive compensation at no additional cost to you.

Shepherd’s pie was always one of my favorite comfort foods growing up.  I loved the creamy potatoes and savory vegetables but honestly – even back before my plant-eating days – I would pick the meat out and throw it in the trash when my parents weren’t looking. Shepherd’s pie has been around for centuries.  According to Jamie Oliver’s page, it should only be called shepherd’s pie if it contains lamb and cottage pie with any other meat. And meatless pie should be called ”Shepherdless Pie”…whatever.  I might have rather called it “Gardener’s Pie” or “Kindness Pie”; but then you might not have been able to find it when you googled!  Let’s just call this a really tasty easy shepherd’s pie with filled with good-for-you vegetables and lentils!

Easy Lentil Shepherd's PieStart with a few simple ingredients.  I like to buy my lentils already steamed. They can often be found in the produce section of the grocery store. If you aren’t able to find pre-cooked lentils, they are actually pretty easy to make on the stove-top.  Follow the package directions for a yield of 2 cups, cooked.

As promised, you won’t have to chop a single vegetable for this recipe!  That’s right, just use a 16 ounce package of frozen mixed vegetables and dehydrated minced onions.  Line the sauté pan with a little vegetable broth to keep the vegetables from sticking.

Easy Lentil Shepherd's PieAdd the dried minced onion and stir around for a minute so that the onion begins to rehydrate.  Then add the vegetables on top and sauté for about 5 minutes in the vegetable broth so that the vegetables have mostly thawed. (You will want to watch your pan carefully and add more broth if the vegetables begin to stick.)  Add in the cooked lentils and the cup of vegetable broth, arrowroot starch (can sub corn starch) thyme and salt. Stir until well mixed and bubbly. The “gravy” should begin to thicken as well.

Pour into a 7″x11″ baking pan and set aside.  This is really the best size pan for the recipe.  If you don’t have that though, a 9″x9″ deep pan will probably work. Easy Lentil Shepherd's Pie


Some people would shudder at the idea of using potato flakes to make the mashed potatoes.  Others would shudder at the thought of actually boiling the potatoes and mashing them.  On days when I don’t have a lot of time or patience, I definitely go with the boxed potato flakes.  By adding nutritional yeast to the potato flakes, you get an almost cheesy flavor.  

Do follow this recipe but look on the back of the package directions for four servings. They should be the same. This should be 1 1/3 cups flakes. 

Sub in vegetable broth for the water and unsweetened plant milk for the dairy milk. The directions call for butter.  I use my favorite vegan buttery spread.  If you are trying to eat oil-free, then leave out the vegan butter; but add in the salt.

When I cook this recipe for Easy Lentil Shepherd’s Pie, I do not add salt to the potatoes.  The nutritional yeast and buttery spread make it plenty salty for my family.  Do taste though, and add salt if desired.

After you mix your potatoes, carefully spread them on top of the vegetable/lentil mixture.  Sprinkle a little paprika on top and cook in a preheated 375° oven for about 20 minutes or until the casserole is heated through and the potatoes are slightly browned on top.

This Easy Lentil Shepherd’s Pie works great for meal prep.  It only makes four though, so double it and cook in a larger baking pan if you will want more. Easy Lentil Shepherd's Pie

Easy Lentil Shepherd's Pie
Great for meal prep!

These are some items I found helpful in making this recipe.  Amazon Affiliate Links:

Pin now to save for later:Easy Lentil Shepherd's Pie

Easy Lentil Shepherd's Pie

Easy Lentil Shepherd's Pie

The Easy Lentil Shepherd's pie is plant-based and uses frozen and boxed ingredients for a quick delicious recipe. 
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 276kcal
Author: Cindy Rainey


Vegetable/ Lentil Mixture

  • 2 Tablespoons Dehydrated Onion Flakes
  • 1 16 ounce package frozen mixed vegetables
  • 2 cups cooked lentils brown or green
  • 1 cup vegetable broth plus extra for sautéing
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons arrowroot starch can sub cornstarch

Mashed Potatoes

  • 1 3/4 cup vegetable broth
  • 2 Tablespoons vegan butter leave out if trying to eat oil-free
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened plant milk
  • 1 1/3 cup potato flakes
  • 3 Tablespoons nutritional yeast


Vegetable/Lentil Mixture

  • Preheat oven to 375°
  • Line a sauté pan with vegetable broth.  Add the dehydrated onion flakes and stir around will rehydrate. 
  • Add frozen vegetables and continue stirring until vegetables are mostly thawed.
  • Add cooked lentils, seasonings, starch, and vegetable broth.  Stir until heated through and bubbly.  The sauce should begin to thicken.
  • Turn into a small (7"x11") baking dish.  Set aside while preparing potatoes. 

Mashed Potatoes

  • Bring vegetable broth and vegan butter to a boil in a medium-sized saucepan.
  • Add potato flakes, nutritional yeast, and plant milk.  Stir until well mixed.  Taste and add salt if desired.
  • Gently spoon mashed potatoes onto the vegetable/lentil layer and spread evenly with a spoon.  Sprinkle a little paprika on top and bake at 375° for about 20 minutes or until heated through and potatoes have firmed up and slightly browned on top.


Calories: 276kcal | Carbohydrates: 43g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 1310mg | Potassium: 746mg | Fiber: 10g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 14.2% | Vitamin C: 21.4% | Calcium: 7.9% | Iron: 24.3%

Potatoes Bruschetta – Oil Free

Do you crave the bruschetta taste but don’t want the oil and refined carbs? If so, then this Potatoes Bruschetta recipe is for you!  It is a meal – not a snack.  The bruschetta sauce is made without oil. Instead of carby white bread, you layer the bruschetta onto seasoned roasted potatoes and chickpeas, which sit on top of a layer of baby spinach.  Yum! And healthy too!  Finish it off with with a sprinkle of my cashew parmesan “cheese“, and you’ve got yourself a fully plant-based and oil-free dish exploding with flavor!

potatoes bruschetta

*Amazon Affiliate Links* This post contains affiliate links.  This means that if you click on and purchase through one of the links, Veggie Fun Kitchen may receive compensation at no additional cost to you.

Preheat your oven to 380°.  Wash four medium russet potatoes, taking a minute to get rid of any “funny” parts.  You will be leaving the skins on, so make sure the skins are as free from blemish if possible. Cut the potatoes in half and then half again.  Wedge each piece into three so that each potato yields 12 wedges. potatoes bruschetta

potatoes bruschetta

Soak the cut potatoes in a bowl of cold water for 30 minutes.  This will get some of the starch out and make for a less soggy potato.


While the potatoes are soaking, you can make the bruschetta sauce.  It will need to sit for about 40 minutes to an hour after cooking so that all the flavors meld nicely together.  You can roast the potatoes and chickpeas while it is sitting.


potatoes bruschetta
The oblong grape tomato is easy to cut in half.



First I cut the little tomatoes in half and then set aside.  I like to use grape tomatoes because they are an oblong shape and easier to hold and cut.  feel free to sub with cherry tomatoes is that is your preference. I know that some bruschetta recipes call for deseeding the tomatoes.  That would be impossible (and silly) to do with the little grape or cherry tomatoes.  I love the strong tomato flavor these tiny tomatoes lend to the recipe.


Press the garlic clove with a flat knife to easily peel away the “paper”.


If you have followed Veggie Fun Kitchen for any amount of time, you know that I’m all about taking shortcuts.  This usually means jarred and pre-chopped garlic.  Not this time…I want all the garlic flavor to come through in this recipe! Chopping garlic can be time-consuming, messy, and leave your fingers smelling – well, garlicky.  One trick I use is to lay the handle end of the knife on to the garlic clove and press down hard. The paper usually peels away fairly easily after that.  (I’ve added an affiliate link below for a hand soap that I can’t live without.  It does a great job washing away the strong food smells, including onion and garlic.)

Add the chopped garlic to a pan along with minced onion.  I do take a short cut here and use dehydrated minced onion.  It does need to be finely minced and I am never able to to do that well enough by hand. Plus, we are adding vegetable broth to the pan, so the onion will easily hydrate as it is cooking.

You can use this short cut.
potatoes bruschetta
Line the bottom of the pan with enough vegetable broth to keep garlic and onions from sticking.


Add enough vegetable broth to cover the bottom of the pan.  We don’t need to use oil in this recipe to get the bruschetta flavor.  Sauté the garlic and onions for a few minutes until the garlic has softened and the onion is fully rehydrated.  Watch your pan carefully and add a little more broth if necessary to ensure the bottom doesn’t stick.

Add the cut tomatoes and stir until just softened – about 3 minutes.  Take the mixture off the heat and add the balsamic vinegar and fresh basil.  Salt to taste.

potatoes bruschetta
Stack the basil leaves together and cut into thin strips.

potatoes bruschetta


This bruschetta sauce is powerful and seedy – and I’m not even mad at that!

Set the bruschetta sauce  aside while you are finishing the your potatoes.  That will take about hour and that’s about the right amount of time.



Drain, rinse and pat dry the potato wedges and put into a bowl.  You can use the same bowl they soaked in but make sure it’s rinsed and dried.  potatoes bruschetta

Save the liquid from you can of chickpeas to make aquafaba. Will keep for a couple of days.


Time to open a can of chickpeas – otherwise known as garbanzo beans.  Drain but reserve the liquid from the can.  This is called aquafaba.  You’ll be using a two Tablespoons in this recipe.  You can save it in an airtight container for a couple of days and make fabulous vegan desserts out of it! (Enjoy this Article all about aquafaba  by Minimalist Baker!)



Add the chickpeas, diced red pepper, spices, balsamic vinegar and 2 Tablespoons of liquid from the can to the potatoes and gently stir to coat well.  (If you neglected to save the liquid, then use water instead.) One of the seasonings you’ll be using is nutritional yeast.  This is different from bakers or brewers yeast and is a staple of the vegan kitchen.  You can often find it in the health food section in grocery stores.  I buy mine from Amazon (affiliate link below.)potatoes bruschetta

Turn the mixture onto a silicone-lined baking sheet (super important to have your pan lined with something as you are not adding oil and it will stick.)  The silicone sheets are a must-have in my kitchen.  I’ve put a link at the bottom.

Place the pan in the preheated oven for about 40 minutes or until potatoes are softened.  I pull it out about half-way and turn the potatoes so that they are evenly baked.

Look for this handy gadget with the affiliate links below.

After the potatoes are done, turn onto a serving dish lined with baby spinach and top with the bruschetta sauce.  A sprinkle of vegan parmesan cheese perfectly finishes this dish!

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Things I found helpful for this recipe (affiliate links):

Potatoes Bruschetta

Potatoes Bruschetta- Oil Free

Get all the flavor of bruschetta without all the oil!  This Potatoes Bruschetta meal is oil free, plant-based, and is bursting with flavor!
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American, Italian
Keyword: Potatoes Bruschetta, Oil-Free
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 5
Calories: 198kcal
Author: Cindy Rainey


Potato Chickpea Mixture

  • 4 Russet Potatoes wedged
  • 1/2 red bell pepper diced
  • 1 15.5 ounce can chickpeas drained, but save liquid
  • 2 Tablespoons Balsamic Vinegar Will also use the same amount in the sauce
  • 1 teaspoon agave nectar can sub maple syrup
  • 2 Tablespoons liquid from chickpea can aquafaba
  • 2 teaspoons Italian Seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon nutritional yeast do NOT sub bakers yeast

Bruschetta Sauce

  • 4 cloves garlic chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon dried minced onion
  • 1/2 cup vegetable broth to line the pan
  • 24 ounces grape or cherry tomatoes cut in half
  • 20 leaves fresh basil cut in strips
  • 2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • salt to taste

Plate it Up



  • Preheat oven to 380°
  • Cut and wedge four washed brown russet potatoes.  Each potato should yield 12 wedges. Do not peel 
  • Soak potato wedges in cold water for 30 minutes. You can prepare bruschetta sauce while potatoes are soaking. 
  • After the potatoes have soaked, rinse and pat dry.  Return to a medium/large sized bowl. 
  • Open can of chickpeas (garbanzo beans).  Drain but reserve some of the liquid. Add to the bowl of potatoes.
  • Dice 1/2 red bell pepper and add to the bowl.
  • Add all other ingredients (vinegar, agave, Italian seasoning, onion and garlic powders, salt, nutritional yeast, aquafaba - liquid from can) and stir to coat well. 
  • Turn onto a lined baking sheet and bake at 380° for about 40 minutes or until potatoes are fork tender.  Open the oven and turn potatoes about half way through. 

Bruschetta Sauce

  • Cut grape/cherry tomatoes in half and set aside. 
  • Stack washed basil leaves together slice thinly.  Set aside.
  • Chop four cloves of garlic and add to a sauté pan along with the dehydrated diced onion.
  • Line the pan with about 1/2 cup vegetable broth and sauté for about 3-5 minuets or until onion is rehydrated and garlic has softened.  Watch your pan carefully and add more broth is necessary to keep garlic from sticking. 
  • Add cut tomatoes and continue stirring until tomatoes have softened - about three minutes.  
  • Remove from heat and add vinegar and fresh basil.  Salt to taste. Let sit while potatoes are finishing - about 60 minutes. 

Plate it Up

  • Line a large serving dish with 2 cups of washed and dried baby spinach.
  • Place cooked potato mixture on top.
  • Spoon bruschetta sauce on top of potato mixture.
  • Top with vegan parmesan cheese if desired.


Calories: 198kcal | Carbohydrates: 44g | Protein: 6g | Sodium: 364mg | Potassium: 1170mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 46.6% | Vitamin C: 73.2% | Calcium: 7% | Iron: 18.6%






Pumpkin Black Bean Soup (Vegan)

This Vegan Pumpkin Black Bean Soup is rich and smooth with pumpkin-y goodness. It is oil-free and so is plant-based.  You can whip it up in a matter of minutes because almost all of the ingredients are canned –  which you just open, pour, and mix -except for the onions which do need to be softened and sautéed along with a few spices.Vegan Black Bean Pumpkin Soup

The first time I made this soup, I had made my super easy and delicious Pumpkin Spice Crescent Rolls and was looking for something to do with the rest of the can of solid pumpkin.  It seemed like such a waste to throw the rest of the can out; and I was actually craving a toasty warm soup on a cool crisp fall day.  I started googling and the first recipe that came up was a pumpkin black bean soup from Queen Rachel herself!  (That’s right! Rachel Ray:) You can read it here on the Food Network .  I veganized it by subbing coconut milk and tweaked the spices a little to meet the tastes of my family  – and here you go!

If you have arrived at the page because you just made my tasty little Pumpkin Spice Crescent Rolls, you should know that you are about 2 Tablespoons short of a full can of pumpkin.  Don’t stress though, it is not enough to make a difference in the final recipe.

This vegan Pumpkin Black Bean Soup is oil-free and easy to pull together with a few ingredients.Start with a small diced onion and sauté in enough vegetable broth to generously cover the bottom of the pan.  It is not necessary to sauté the onions in oil, just watch your pan so that it doesn’t dry out and burn. Yes, I just may have done that a time or two…

Vegan Pumpkin Black Bean Soup
I let the pan get dry and the onions burned.

I like to get the onion totally softened before adding the other ingredients.  The simmer time isn’t long after adding everything else in, and you really don’t want crunchy onions in this soup!


Vegan Pumpkin Black Bean Soup
All the ingredients you need for Vegan Black Bean Pumpkin Soup

When I say this vegan pumpkin black bean soup is really easy to throw together, I’m not kidding! After sautéing the onion and adding a few spices, just open a few cans and dump them in!

I love to top with pepitas (pumpkin seeds), chives, and maybe a little cilantro.  Serve with some warm crusty bread or chips.

Pin it now to save for later:
Vegan Pumpkin Black Bean Soup

Looking for a fun “adult” reason to use more coconut cream? Try my Boozy Vegan Shamrock Shake recipe. So creamy and good!

Vegan Pumpkin Black Bean Soup

Pumpkin Black Bean Soup (Vegan)

This Vegan Pumpkin Black Bean Soup is oil- free, hearty and creamy. It's easy to throw together using mostly canned ingredients.  Enjoy on a cool, crisp, fall morning. 
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course, Side Dish, Soup
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Vegan Pumpkin Black Bean Soup
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories: 190kcal
Author: Cindy Rainey


  • 1 onion small, diced
  • 1 cup vegetable broth divided, more if needed to keep pan from burning
  • 1 teaspoons curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne powder more or less to taste
  • 10 turns ground black pepper
  • 2 cans (15 ounce) solid pack pumpkin NOT pumpkin pie mix
  • 1 can (15.5 ounce) black bean chili beans undrained
  • 1 can (13.5 ounce) coconut milk full fat for flavor and lite to save calories
  • 1 can (14.5 ounce) fire roasted diced tomatoes. undrained
  • pepitas and chopped chives for topping optional


  • Add 1/2 cup vegetable broth to pan along with diced onion and sauté until very tender - about 10 minutes. Watch your pan though so that it doesn't dry up and burn.  Add more broth if necessary. Make sure your onions are as fully softened before adding the rest of the ingredients as there is not much simmer time.
  • Add seasonings in, stirring coat the onions and slightly toast the seasonings.
  • Add in solid pumpkin (NOT pumpkin pie mix), undrained black bean chili beans, coconut milk, and undrained diced tomatoes.
  • Add up to1/2 cup or so of broth to get the best consistency.  
  • Stir together and heat through till barely brought to a boil and heated through.
  • Top with pepitas, and chopped chives.  Serve warm.


Calories: 190kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 11g | Sodium: 935mg | Potassium: 54mg | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 2.9% | Vitamin C: 1.6% | Calcium: 1.5% | Iron: 2.9%


Vegan Chili with Walnuts (The Prize Winner!)

This vegan chili is the bomb!  It is oil-free  and uses diced walnuts – not as a meat replacement – but for texture…and a little protein (because “where do we get our protein?” haha)  It’s super easy because it uses  canned beans and tomatoes.  It also has a few secret ingredients. Read on for more info. Give this Vegan Chili a try. You won’t be sorry!

First things first…this chili DOES contain nuts! Chili normally does not contain nuts.  If you ever serve this to others (and believe me, you’ll want to), don’t try to “pass” it off as non-vegan chili.  Nuts normally aren’t in chili and you are responsible to make others aware.Chili in white bowl with corn chips and bell peppers

Now that that important little detail is out of the way…Would it be presumptuous to call this the BEST DAMN Vegan Chili around?  You might wonder…  But yes, I have won a contest with this chili!  It’s always a big hit when I make it for family or friends too.  You could top it with the fake vegan cheese if you like. To keep it truly plant-based though, try my Chili Cheese Sauce and/or my Jalapeño Ranch Dressing.  Both are awesome toppings – just use one or go for both!

Start with diced onion and minced garlic. Years ago I discovered minced garlic in a jar and will never go back! Ever!  When a recipe calls for 1 clove of garlic, I just kinda eyeball it and pull out a rough teaspoon for each clove.  Garlic cloves are often different sizes anyway; so I’ve always gone with the theory of “close enough” on this one.vegan chili

Sauté the diced onion and garlic with vegetable broth.  That’s right; you don’t need oil!  Cover the bottom of your pan with the broth and then watch to make sure it isn’t burning.  The recipe calls for 1/2 cup of vegetable broth and while that’s about right, always check to make sure the bottom of the pan isn’t drying up, and add more if necessary.

Chop the red and a green bell peppers and add to the onion-garlic mixture.  Continue to sauté until the onion is translucent and the peppers are soft.

vegan chili
Isn’t this platter of peppers and onions beautiful?!

Add the seasonings, beer, diced walnuts, and canned items.  Make sure the beans you get are “chili” style. They already have some seasoning in them and so you can just open and dump without draining. In fact, the only canned item you’ll need to drain is the corn.

vegan chlli
This chili pulls together quickly because you use canned goods. Shhhh…no one has to know!

Wait! Did I say beer?  That’s right:) One 12 ounce can of beer adds just a little something-something to make this chili fabulous! The fact that this chili contains alcohol is another important disclosure you must make if serving to others.  Not everybody is a fan (as in: not everybody can drink alcohol for various reasons) and it does not necessarily “cookout” in the amount of time this recipe will be on the stove.  If you choose to not use beer in your chili, no problem.  Just sub in 12 ounces (1 1/2 cups) vegetable broth.  It will still be fabulous.

I use a small can of mild green chilis when I’m making this vegan chili for my family because they don’t enjoy their food too spicey. If you enjoy a little extra heat, you should use a can of jalapeños instead.  You can also add more or drop in a little hot sauce on top.

While you are bringing the chili to a boil, mix together the cornstarch with water, cocoa powder, and a little agave nectar or (real) maple syrup.

What? Chocolate?  Yes indeed! This is the final secret ingredient.  I always just said I was giving my chili a little extra love when in fact I was giving it chocolate.  Cocoa powder along with the tiniest amount of sweetener cuts through the acidic tomato and gives your chili a little extra special richness.

vegan chili
The “secret ingredient” I’ve been adding to my chili for years!

Bring to a boil and then simmer on the stove for two hours so that all the flavors have a chance to meld together.  Add a little extra salt to taste, some hot sauce, chips, hot peppers,  and toppings of choice.  I like to top with my awesome Vegan Chili Cheese Sauce and Jalapeño Ranch.Vegan Chili






Vegan Chili
Pin this fabulous vegan chili NOW so you don’t lose it!


Chili in white bowl with corn chips and bell peppers

Vegan Chili with Walnuts (The Prize Winner!)

This Vegan Chili is plant-based and oil-free.  It uses diced walnuts, canned beans and tomatoes.  
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course, Soup
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Vegan Chili
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 15 minutes
Servings: 9 people
Calories: 257kcal
Author: Cindy Rainey


  • 1 yellow onion diced
  • 1 Tablespoon garlic chopped
  • 1/2 cup vegetable broth Add more to keep from scorching
  • 1 red bell pepper diced
  • 1 green bell pepper diced
  • 10 ounces walnuts diced
  • 12 ounces beer Sub vegetable broth if desired
  • 4 Tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt add more at the end for taste
  • 1 15 oz can pinto chili beans undrained
  • 1 15 oz can black chili beans undrained
  • 1 15 oz can kidney chili beans undrained
  • 1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes undrained
  • 1 15 oz can fire roasted diced tomatoes undrained
  • 1 8 oz can corn drained
  • 1 4 oz can green chilis sub jalapeños for more heat
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 Tablespoon corn starch
  • 1 Tablespoon cocoa powder unsweetened
  • 2 teaspoons agave nectar can sub real maple syrup


  • Dice vegetables and set aside.
  • Line a large stew pot with vegetable broth - about 1/2 cup. Add onions, bell pepper, and garlic.  Sauté till onions are translucent.  Watch bottom of pan and add more broth if necessary so that it doesn't run dry and scorch. 
  • Add seasoning, diced walnuts, beer, and all canned ingredients including beans, tomatoes, corn, and diced chilis. Stir together and bring to a boil.
  • While chili mixture is coming to a boil, stir together water, cornstarch, cocoa powder, and agave.  Stir into pot.
  • Bring to a boil for a few minutes then reduce heat and simmer for the next two hours, covered.


You MUST disclose to anyone you are serving this chili to that it contains nuts and alcohol.  Not disclosing the nuts could have serious health consequences.  Nuts normally wouldn't be found in chili so it is especially important that you disclose. 


Calories: 257kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 505mg | Potassium: 299mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 32.1% | Vitamin C: 35.3% | Calcium: 5.5% | Iron: 11%