vegan bacon

Breakfast Bacon Pizza

This breakfast bacon pizza creation is our latest breakfast routine! This is how we work most of the time, we find something that we like, that's easy to put together, and we stick with it for awhile. I wanted to share because it's so simple and who doesn't need more breakfast ideas?

Here's what we use:
Follow Your Heart Gluten Free Tortilla
Refried Beans- Home made or canned
Tofu Scramble- Pre-made, we always keep a tupperware of our Simple Tofu Scramble recipe in the fridge for this or for tacos
Daiya Cheese
Proper's Pickle Pickled Serranos
And finally, topped it all off with our Coconut Bacon

 

 

 

 

Vegan Peanut Butter Bacon Fudge Recipe

My aunt owns her own hair salon in Berwyn, Illinois, where I grew up. It's down the street from where my parents live, and during the summer my friends and I would use it as a marker for how far we could before we  were "too far" and we'd turn right back around after waving a hello at my aunt. Her clients are friendly, many of them in their 70s and 80s, and they love my aunt's "crazy" accent. If I were to compare her to a character people have heard of, it would be the aunt from My Big Fat Greek Wedding. 

Every year, she makes dozens and dozens of traditional Greek cookies as Christmas treats for her clients. And I really mean dozens and dozens- she does not let that cookie tray run out ever during the holiday season. Over the years, clients started bringing in cookies and treats to share with her. And this, is where this story starts to have a point.

We always had traditional powdered sugar cookies and honey cookies, but I remember being most excited by the things my aunt would bring home from her clients. Namely, fudge. One client always made giant slabs of different kinds of fudge. I looked forward to them every year and after going vegan, I remember my aunt saying there was no one to eat it now that I couldn't have any!

Fast forward to years later, an Internet friend posted a picture of peanut butter fudge that looked amazing. And even better, she was a VEGAN Internet friend! I don't know why I had never thought of making fudge before, it seems like one of those special things that just shows up and blesses you with deliciousness?

These were her instructions:

It's a super easy recipe to follow and adapt (1 part pb to 1 part butter) and I think a great addition to a Christmas cookie platter. It's rich but the bacon adds some much needed salt when you're in a sugar cookie coma.

Here's how I made our peanut butter bacon fudge:

Ingredients & Supplies:
1 cup peanut butter
1 cup Earth Balance butter
1 tsp of vanilla
2 cups of powdered sugar (you may or may not use the entire 2 cups)
1/3 cup Coconut Bacon
Plastic wrap or Parchment Paper

Instructions:

  1. Over low-medium heat, melt your Earth Balance and peanut butter together. If you are like me, you may be tempted to up the temperature on this and be done faster, so you can eat faster. Don't be like me. Let it melt slowly.
  2. Whisk in a teaspoon of vanilla and whisk everything together as it melts down, until you've basically got a sauce of peanut butter. Your kitchen will smell amazing.
  3. Remove the pot from heat and start adding powdered sugar to the mixture. I do this in 1/2 cup increments and whisk in between, so that I don't get any lumps.
  4. The OG recipe calls for 1/2 a pound of powdered sugar, which is about 1 and 7/8th cups of sugar. If you've nearly added all the sugar and the mixture is solid and hard to combine, you don't need the last bit of sugar. 
  5. I free-form the fudge in plastic wrap or parchment paper, whatever we have available. I usually scoop the mixture out into the middle of the wrap and then use the wrap to form a square of even thickness. 
  6.  While it's still warm, sprinkle Coconut Bacon over the top of the fudge square. I take the parchment paper and press down into the fudge lightly so the bacon gets nice and stuck in there.
  7. At this point, you can refrigerate your fudge so that it will set faster. Or you can let it dry naturally. I refrigerate because PEANUT BUTTER.
     

Eggless Easter: Vegan Hollandaise

"It's like egg butter sauce!" - That's what Kyle yelled from the kitchen while he was working on this recipe, so you have to know it's going to be tasty!

Asparagus and Hollandaise is a match made in heaven.... and since we live in California, we already get to use our grill in March!

Asparagus and Hollandaise is a match made in heaven.... and since we live in California, we already get to use our grill in March!

Hollandaise is definitely something we love to order when we're out, but we've never made the "perfect" version at home before this. One of our favorite places to get Hollandaise is from Blossom in New York, where Kyle and I had a Sunday brunch date when we were visiting my favorite city together for the first time.

When Mother's had a Tofu Benedict as a special, we hurried over so we could get our Hollandaise fix. A lot of people say that Mother's goes light on the seasoning- these people have never tried their Hollandaise. What the menu doesn't say about this special is that it's a spicy version of this sauce. I took one bite and passed my plate over to Kyle- I couldn't handle the heat! Of course, that means Kyle ate two servings and loved every bite of the spicy special.

Our version starts with soaked raw macadamia nuts, but also includes butter and lemon, which are classic non-vegan Hollandaise ingredients. Our Tofu Scramble Seasoning gives this sauce an eggy richness without all of the cholesterol of the real thing.

Try the sauce on a Bacon Benedict- with English muffins, asparagus and coconut bacon. Or try a Florentine- with sauteed spinach and oven roasted tomatoes on top of an English muffin.

Vegan Hollandaise

Ingredients:
1 cup raw macadamia nuts, soaked
1 stick Earth Balance, melted
2 tbsp lemon juice
3/4 cup water
1/4 tsp paprika
1 pack Tofu Scramble Seasoning
Turmeric for color, optional

Directions:

  1. Soak macadamia nuts. We soaked hours for a few hours, but if you soaked them over night, you might need to use less water. You can try this with cashews too!
  2. Blend everything together until smooth.
  3. Put it all over everything! Asparagus, potatoes, English muffins, vegan ham, baked tofu. Whatever you can think of!

RECIPE: Tomato Coconut Bacon Relish

Coconut Bacon Relish on Rosemary Crostini

Coconut Bacon Relish on Rosemary Crostini

Somehow, SoCal went from a wintery freeze to a heatwave in just a matter of days. I swear, it was like 50 degrees when the week started... that's chilly for around these parts! ;) By the weekend, we were hanging out and Kyle was wearing seersucker in the sun. The good weather meant two things: GRILLING TIME and ICE CREAM TIME!

It just so happens that grilling time coincides with an amazing time to be vegan. Not only did we have the new Beyond Meat Beast Burgers to try, but also a brand new pack of the Follow Your Heart American Cheese Slices. Alright, so maybe the pack of slices wasn't brand new and a mouse named Andrea had already eaten a few pieces cold BUT... I mean, how far has vegan cheese come in just a few short years?! 

You could try both of these new items and throw coconut bacon on top and call it a day, but if you really want to up your burger game, try our Tomato Coconut Bacon Relish recipe. You get the smoke from the coconut bacon and the seared red pepper, and a really nice acid kick from the tomatoes. Kyle says this is an "umami bomb", but I refuse to use the word umami. (Ok that was me, Kyle, typing that sentence. I just like to give Andrea a little grief here and there. Back to my soon-to-be-wife's blog post!)

We loved this relish- we ate it on crackers and have been coming up with new ideas for it ever since we had it on these burgers. Try it on a BRAT sandwich... that's just some mayo, this coconut bacon relish, and some arugula for an amazing simple sandwich. Or, mix it into some mayo for an awesome aioli! 

Is it vegan or is it meat? BEAST BURGER!

Is it vegan or is it meat? BEAST BURGER!

Tomato Coconut Bacon Relish

Ingredients:
1/4 cup white onion, chopped
1/4 small red bell pepper, chopped
1 cup cherry tomatoes, chopped
1/4 cup  coconut bacon
1 tbsp oil (we use canola)
1/2 tsp tamari
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp garlic

Directions:

  1. Add the oil to your pan and turn your stove top burner to high. You want a really hot pan to start off with!
  2. Add the onion and red pepper to the pan. Add the salt. Because you're working with high heat, you want to baby sit your pan and stir often. Everything should cook down but not burn or get too browned. This step should take 1 minute.
  3. Add the tomatoes. Let this cook down for another 2-3 minutes, until they have a little bit of a sear on them and are beginning to blister.
  4. Add the rest of the ingredients: apple cider vinegar, tamari, black pepper and garlic. Reduce heat to medium and let cook for another 2 minutes. 
  5. Add the coconut bacon and stir to make sure everything is coated in the reduced relish you've created.
  6. Cook for another 2-3 minutes until you reach a jam-like consistency.
  7. Remove from burner and allow to cool. I usually put something like EAT IT as the last step, but this is much better when it's cooled down and you get all of the different flavor notes married, from the smoke to the acid to the unexpected sweetness. 

As for the ICE CREAM TIME portion of this blog post, I bring you..drumroll please....the new So Delicious Cashew Milk ice cream. It is so creamy and rich and delicious. We found this along with a bunch of other flavors at Sprouts- can't wait to go back for the Dark Chocolate Truffle! 


March Madness at Guru Donuts

bacondonutvegan

Meet Guru Donuts, the perfect little donut shop in Idaho.  You can find vegan and non-vegan donut perfection here, sprinkled with creative toppings. They've just unveiled their brand new menu for March and we have to say, we're sort of in love? Maybe we're a little bias though ;)

In the starting line up for March Madness comes...dun a dun dunnn...

A vegan maple bacon topped donut, using our coconut bacon! They use real maple syrup and coconut milk in their glaze, then top it off with our smokey salty goodness. Is there anything better?! No. There's not. I answered for you. 

If you're in Boise, check out Guru Donuts. Or if you're one of those crazy road tripping vegans on the hunt for donuts, be sure to include Guru on your next foodcation!


Vegan Bacon Chocolate Covered Pretzels

I don't even want to call this a recipe. Here's an IDEA that we had and it tastes delicious and takes no time! You can easily make a batch with coconut bacon, or sprinkles, or Oreo crumbles, get as creative as you want. They're an easy treat for a Valentine's Day party or even to give to the bacon lover in your family- they'll NEVER know it's vegan!

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Coconut Bacon Chocolate Covered Pretzels

Large pretzel rods (we bought ours at Target!)

1 1/2 cups of vegan chocolate chips

1/2 cup coconut bacon, food processed into crumbs

Sprinkles, Oreo crumbs, potato chip crumbs?! (Whatever else you'd like to use!)

Instructions

  1. Melt your chocolate. Some people like to do this in the microwave. If you're going that route, use a microwave safe bowl and microwave your chips for 30 seconds. Take the chips out, stir, and microwave in 30 second intervals until the chips are melted. If you microwave chocolate for too long, it will seize up and become a ROCK of chocolate which is delicious but not what we're going for today! If you are going to melt the chocolate on a stove top, put some water in a sauce pot, and put a heat-safe bowl on top of the sauce pot. Put your chocolate into the heat safe bowl and let it melt in there, stirring occasionally. I almost always skip the heat safe bowl and put the chips right into a pot, keep the temperature low, and stir until I get a smooth consistency. Just keep your heat low! This was a very long paragraph for melting chocolate!
  2. While the chocolate is melting, food process your coconut bacon until it's the size of sprinkles. This is also a really good recipe to use up the little pieces left at the bottom of a coconut bacon bag! Don't let any go to waste!
  3. Use a butter knife or a spoonula to spread chocolate on the pretzel rod, leaving a few inches on the bottom uncovered so you can hold your pretzel and not get too messy while eating. 
  4. Sprinkle coconut bacon on to the wet chocolate. As much or as little as you'd like.
  5. You can put the rods down onto a silicone mat or wax paper to dry. I took a ball jar and covered it with aluminum foil, then poked a hole in it and put the uncovered part of the pretzel into the jar so it could dry vertically. It's not really necessary to do it that way though.
  6. Let them set! If you're in a hurry, stick them in the fridge or freezer and the chocolate will dry up a lot faster.
  7. Put them in a jar, in a treat bag, wrap them with a bow, or just eat them. Whatever!

Vegan Cheddar Bacon Cheese Ball

Anything you can eat, I can eat vegan. Bacon cheese balls are NO exception.

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This cheese ball is perfect for a fancy schmancy wine & cheese night, or if you're a bearded man [read:Kyle], paired with a hearty porter or stout. 

My only tips for a tasty cheese ball are:

  • Taste as you go! Adjust your spices accordingly.
  • Lemon adds to the tangy-cheesy flavor, but be careful not to add too much!
  • If you're finding your cheese ball to be too crumbly, add a bit of olive oil to smooth it all out

Vegan Coconut Bacon Cheese Ball

1 cup raw or roasted cashews (I prefer roasted)

1/2 cup slivered almonds

1/3 block of tofu (I used extra firm, just don't use silken)

1/3 cup nutritional yeast

2 tsp lemon juice

1/2 tsp liquid smoke (remember, you're adding smokey bacon to it, so don't over do it!)

4 tsp paprika

3 tsp yellow mustard

2 tsp garlic powder

2 tbps onion powder

Coconut Bacon (around 1/3 of a cup)

  1. Add the nuts to a food processor and let it run on high until the nuts look like bread crumbs.
  2. Add the tofu, lemon juice, liquid smoke, and yellow mustard to the nut mixture.
  3. Add nutritional yeast, paprika, garlic, and onion. Let the food processor run until everything comes together in a dough.
  4. If your dough is too dry, add some olive oil.
  5. Pour coconut bacon into a bowl.
  6. Take the mixture out of the food processor and form into a ball. Roll the ball around in the bacon until the bacon is wedged into the surface.
  7. Cover the cheese ball, and place it in the fridge. This will let all the flavors settle and come together. It will firm up and become sliceable after a few hours. If you want a softer cheese, leave it in the fridge for less time.
  8. Eat with crackers or bread or with a spoon or a fork. Whatever floats your boat. 

Crafting the Perfect Vegan BLTA

Since we just shipped our first production batch of Coconut Bacon, we figured it would only be right to tell you how we make our signature BLTA, the way we do in sliders for catering, and the way we did at the old shop in Irvine.

You have to start with two pieces of high quality bread, toasted to perfection and slathered with the right amount of Vegenaise on both pieces. (The right amount of Vegenaise is relative to your particular liking for the product, so we'll leave that up to you.) Take a 1/2 cup of PB's Coconut Bacon and spread it evenly on the bottom slice of bread. Next, layer 2-3 leaves of romaine lettuce followed by 4-6 slices of roma tomatoes. Lastly, slice 1/4 or a 1/2 of an avocado and place on top of the tomatoes. Finish with the top slice of toast, give the whole sandwich a diagonal cut and devour with pleasure!

Now that's a stellar BLTA. Phoney Baloney's Coconut Bacon is available for purchase online here!