Vegetarian Thankgiving: Practice Round

Good morning!!!!!!!

I’ve had a frazzled Monday morning so far… my puppy and I had a RUDE awakening to a fire alarm this morning. Uggggggh.

Our apartment’s fire alarm system is so LOUD it makes my skin vibrate! I can’t even imagine what it does to Yasha’s poor doggie ears! She was FREAKING out, so we quickly got outside for a walk until it was over. I’m so grateful to be at home with her for situations like that. I heard multiple doggies stuck in their apartments, barking at the alarm while we were outside, and there was nothing I could do for them. ๐Ÿ™

Fortunately, it was just a false alarm and we got to go back inside within fifteen minutes. Whew!

Since my morning was a bit thrown off, I decided to try one of the free samples I recently got of Starbucks VIA coffee:


The little packet was really easy to tear open, then I simply added 1 cup of hot water and stirred:


Voila! Instant coffee! And it actually tastes okay! I think I still prefer my brewed coffee over this, but if I’m ever in a pinch, I’d be perfectly happy with another packet of VIA.

I’m sipping on my coffee a little later than usual today, because I still have no appetite for breakfast. My husband and I had company over last night, and we made a “practice” Thanksgiving dinner! It was a HOG-fest! And to think, all I really wanted to do was try out a new recipe I had for mac n’ cheese…

For our main entree, we had a lovely Tofurkey:


I like to baste my Tofurkey in a marinade of 1/4 cup orange juice + 2 Tablespoons of soy sauce. I pour half of the marinade over the roast, then wrap it in tin foil and place it on a baking sheet. Let it cook for 1 hour and 15 minutes at 350 degrees. When the time is up, unwrap the foil, and baste the roast with the rest of the marinade. Return to the oven, uncovered, for another 15 minutes until the “skin” is golden. It turns out perfect every time!

Now, for the real “experiment” of the night: an “adult version” of Mac n’ Cheese!!!!!!

I will say it right now, I am NOT a fan of mac n’ cheese. I never liked it as a kid, and I never liked it as an adult. So, I was really trying this recipe out on the behalf of our guests who will be coming to dinner next weekend. I wanted to make a high-quality version, rather than that orange-powdery stuff that makes me cringe! So, I started off with high-quality ingredients:


I was really excited to find this organic brown rice pasta at Trader Joe’s! I could make gluten-free mac n’ cheese! Of course, I ended up using whole-wheat flour, and organic wheat bread crumbs… so this was not a gluten free version. But it could easily be done! I also used organic 1% milk, raw gruyere cheese and organic sharp cheddar. Don’t you love how I try to balance out this completely unhealthy recipe by using organic ingredients? Ha ha. ๐Ÿ™‚

I used the Barefoot Contessa’s decadent recipe, and this was the final result:


This was so incredible, that even I liked it!!!! This recipe is a keeper! The only adjustment I made was using 2 teaspoons of sea salt instead of a full tablespoon (that sounded like a LOT to me….). I’ll probably reduce the amount of bread crumbs next time, too. Other than that, it was perfect. WAY better than that box stuff!!

So you can see why I’m still stuffed from last night… it was worth it, though. I think it’s good to indulge in the “real thing” every now and then!

But now it’s back to lots of fruits and veggies today! ๐Ÿ™‚

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I just tried the more substantial green smoothie and it was delicious. I am trying to lose weight and detox(a bit) before and during Christmas. By a bit, I may have a little piece of chocolate or 1 small cookie but for dinner bought some yummy fruits and veggies for a shake for dinner.

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