The ULTIMATE Guide To Roasting Veggies

Hey guys! Roasted veggies are one of my favourite things to eat, and my go to side dish. They get so caramelized and delicious in the oven and just taste AMAZING! I’ve posted a lot of recipes that feature roasted veggies as well, and I thought that it was high time to post an ULTIMATE guide to making these babies. They’re very simple and straight forward, but this post will help you get the perfect roasting time and know exactly what to look for when your veg comes out of the oven.

I’d have to say that my favourite veggie to roast is sweet potato, but I also love a good roasted cauliflower, onion, beet, carrot, or chickpea. The possibilities are endless! I’ll categorize the veggies that I’m writing about into groups like root vegetables and cruciferous vegetables (your vocab word of the day- veggies like broccoli and cauliflower), so that if there is a veggie I’ve missed you can roast it the same way as the other veggies in its family. Let’s get started!

First of all, I almost always roast my veggies at 400 degrees Fahrenheit. It’s high enough to cook the veggies quickly and get some nice caremelization going, but not so high that you’ll burn them to a crisp. Some kind of oil is also good for roasting, so I usually toss my veg in about a tablespoon or two of olive oil, enough to lightly coat them, and some salt and pepper before throwing them on a parchment lined baking sheet in the oven. You can also get creative with other spice combos! Okay, now that you know the roasting basics, you can scroll on down and I’ll let you know how to prepare each vegetable and how long to roast it for. When reading this next part, keep in mid that soft means easily pierce-able with a fork, but not mushy. No one likes mushy vegetables.

Root Vegetables

Sweet Potatoes (had to start with my fave): Wash your potato well, or peel it. Dice into cubes about an couple centimetres wide. Roast for about 30-35 minutes, until the sweet potatoes are soft and going slightly dark around the edges. (ps I don’t do a lot of normal potato roasting, but I can assume it would be the same procedure).

Carrots: Peel the carrots. Cut into sticks about five centimetres long and a centimetre wide. Roast for about 25-30 minutes, until soft and slightly caremelized.

Beets: Peel the beets. Dice into cubes that are two centimetres wide and roast for 30-35 minutes, until soft.

Onion: Peel the onion. Cut the onion in half, then into think slices, without separating the layers. Roast for about 20 minutes, until they’re soft and slightly brown.

Garlic (great for soups and dips!): Wrap a whole garlic clove in some tinfoil (I don’t use oil for this one) and roast for 15-20 minutes. Let the tinfoil cool slightly, then unwrap the little packet and remove the garlic cloves from their skins.

Cruciferous Vegetables:

Cauliflower: Wash the cauliflower well and cut it into florets a few centimetres high and a couple wide. Roast them for 20-25 minutes, until they’re tender and going brown.

Broccoli: Can be roasted the same way as cauliflower.

Brussels Sprouts: Remove some of the outer leaves and cut the brussels sprouts in half. Roast for 25-30 minutes, until soft and going brown.

Red Cabbage: Wash the cabbage and cut into lengthwise into cross sections about a centimetre thick. Roast for 25-30 minutes, until soft.

Kale: Chop width-wise into two centimetre long pieces and roast for 15-20 minutes, until crisp.

Squashes:

Zucchini: Wash and slice into circles about a centimetre think. Roast for 20 minutes, until soft and browning.

Butternut: Peel and cut into two centimetre wide cubes. Roast for 30-30 minutes, until soft and going golden.

Eggplant: Wash and cut into one centimetre thick cross sections. Roast for 20-25 minutes, until soft and going golden brown.

Other (aka I don’t know where these go)

Cherry Tomatoes: Wash and roast for 10-15 minutes, until very soft and getting slightly charred.

Tomatoes: Wash and cut into quarters. Roast for 15-20 minutes, until slightly charred.

Peppers: Wash, remove the stems and cut into chunks a few centimetres wide. Roast for 20 minutes, until soft.

Asparagus: Wash and cut off the very bottoms of the stems and any mushy parts. Roast for about 20-25 minutes, until fork tender but still a bit firm. The one vegetable that I would most hate to have mushy is asparagus!

Snap Peas: Wash and roast for 15-20 minutes, until soft.

Mushrooms: Apparently washing mushrooms make them absorb water that will come out when cooking them, so wiping your mushrooms with a paper towel might be a better cleaning method. You can slice the mushrooms and roast them for 15-20 minutes, or leave them whole and roast for 20-25 minutes. Either way, the mushrooms should be soft when done.

Chickpeas (from the can): Drain and rinse the chickpeas, then roast for 20 minutes, until crispy.

And there you have it! Talking about these veggies makes me want some:) If you like roasting any other kinds of veggies, let me know so I can try them out!

Yours Truly,

Olivia;)

Loaded Maple Balsamic Salad

How’s it going guys? It’s starting to feel like summer vacation because the weather is finally warming up! I’m starting to establish some rhythm and being more productive, so that’s a plus. These posts are keeping me busy and thinking!

Sooooo I heard that lots of people don’t like salads. What’s up with that? I don’t know what kind of salads that they’re eating, but in my world, salads have hot veggies, cold veggies, protein, mashed avocado, and SICK dressings. Making salads is actually so much fun because you can play around with flavour combos and pretty much add whatever you want. Today I’m sharing the recipe for this Loaded Maple Balsamic Salad. And before you ask, yes, it is VERY loaded. You’ve got sauteed peppers and golden brown butternut squash, corn, carrots, cucs, spinach, avo, hemp hearts, and an awesome maple balsamic dressing. Is it even physically possible not to like that combo? I think not. Go check out the recipe!

Loaded Maple Balsamic Salad

Serves: 1 very hungry person

Total Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:

For the Salad:

  • A handful of baby spinach
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • Half a bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup cooked corn (I used frozen)
  • 3/4 cup frozen butternut squash chunks (If you don’t have these you can use roasted squash or sweet potato, and skip the steps related to the frozen squash)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 of a large cucumber, diced
  • 1/2 a large carrot, shredded
  • 1/2 an avocado, mashed
  • A sprinkle of hemp hearts

For the Maple Balsamic Dressing:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp dried rosemary
  • 1/2 tsp maple syrup
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Whisk the dressing ingredients in a bowl and set aside.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a small pan over medium heat, and add in the peppers to saute.
  3. While the peppers are cooking, bring some water to boil in a small pot and add in the frozen butternut squash chunks. Cook them for about 2 minutes, then drain and add them to the pan with the peppers.
  4. Cook the squash and the peppers until they’re soft and have some browning going on on the outside, about 6 minutes. Then remove from the heat and season with salt and pepper.
  5. In a large bowl, arrange the spinach, peppers and squash, carrots, cucumber, and corn. Place the mashed avocado in the centre, and top with the hemp hearts and maple balsamic dressing.
  6. Enjoy!!

I hope this salad changes your mind about salads. It’s the salad to end all salad discrimination!

Yours Truly,

Olivia;))

Curried Sweet Potato Pita Pockets

Hi guys! Today I have an AWESOME recipe for you guys; these Curried Potato Pita Pockets are one of my favourite recipes ever! They’re super quick and easy to make, plus they pack in SO much flavour and freshness. Sweet potatoes are life my friends, so they had to be included in this recipe too. I was inspired by a veggie samosa wrap by VeganRicha, but I changed and simplified the recipe and it turned out great! The sweet potatoes are roasted with some red bell peppers in cumin and curry powder, then mashed a bit and paired with a fresh cilantro-y bean salad in a warm pita. Basically, my dreams in a pocket of bread. These pitas make great leftovers to, and will definitely be one of my go-to lunch recipes when I’m back at school. Enjoy the recipe;)

Curried Sweet Potato Pita Pockets

Serves: 3

Total Time: 50 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 large sweet potato or yam
  • 1/2 a red bell pepper
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp +1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 can of red kidney beans, drained and rinsed (chickpeas or black beans can be used in a pinch)
  • 1/4 cup packed cilantro leaves
  • 1/4 of a red onion, diced
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • 3 whole wheat pitas
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit (after 200 posts I finally managed to spell Fahrenheit right the first time!)
  2. Peel the sweet potato and cut it into very small cubes, a little less than a centimetre in size. Chop the bell pepper into the same sized cubes and place the veggies on a parchment lined baking sheet.
  3. Toss the veggies in the olive oil, curry powder, 1 tsp of cumin and some salt and pepper. Place the pan into the oven and roast for about 20-25 minutes, until the sweet potatoes and peppers are soft.
  4. Meanwhile, toss the red kidney beans, tomato, red onion, cilantro, 1/2 tsp of cumin and lemon juice together in a bowl and set aside.
  5. Once the veggies are roasted, remove them from the oven and transfer to a large bowl. Use a fork to mash the mixture, leaving some sweet potato chunks whole.
  6. Warm up the pitas in the microwave and cut or rip them in half. Open up each half so that it forms a pocket, and scoop equal amounts of the roasted veggies and bean salad into them.
  7. Enjoy!

Hope you guys love this recipe as much as I do! Thank you for reading and I’ll see you on Friday;))

Yours Truly,

Olivia;)

Stuffed Pepper Stew

Hey there! Hope you’re all doing well;)) I find that cooking is a great way to stay busy, so I’ve been trying to at least plan out new recipes every day. I wanted to make stuffed peppers, because they’re so comforting and delicious. But it turns out that I only had one big pepper, and two mini ones. Here’s where some quarantine problem solving comes in! This Stuffed Pepper Stew combines all of the flavours of a stuffed pepper, but in stew form. It’s so good and uses super simple ingredients! It actually might be better than a stuffed pepper, because it reminds me of an amazing Hungarian pepper dish that my Mom and Grandma make. Plus, there’s lots of protein in there from lentils. I also used some soy sauce to boost the savoury flavour, which is a trick I learned from The Stingy Vegan. All the veggies get simmered in a delicious broth that’s loaded with herbs and spices, and it’ll make your house smell really good;)) This stew is also one of those things that tastes better the next day, because all of the flavours sit together overnight. Check out the recipe down below;))

Stuffed Pepper Stew

Serves: 4

Total Time: 90 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 bell peppers, any colour, chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 1 sprig of oregano, finely chopped (or 1/2 tbsp dried oregano)
  • 1/2 tbsp basil
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp allspice
  • 1/2 cup green lentils
  • 1 can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp of tomato paste
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large pot. Add in the onion and cook until translucent, about 6 minutes.
  2. Add in the peppers and garlic, and cook for another six minutes until the peppers are soft.
  3. Dump the diced tomatoes, spices, soy sauce, herbs, and lentils into the pot and stir until combined. Bring the mixture to a boil, then turn the heat to low and simmer for about an hour, until the lentils have cooked through.
  4. Once the lentils are cooked, stir through the tomato paste and season with salt and pepper.
  5. Enjoy with rice, quinoa, some bread, or by itself!

Keep cooking and creating!

Yours Truly,

MyDayIsBooked

Spiced Carrot Falafel

Hey there! I’m starting to feel a bit of cabin fever, but I’m trying to keep busy and positive;) Cooking is a really great way to do that, and today I have a great recipe that’s freezable and super versatile. These spiced carrot falafel are super flavourful and easy to make! I like eating them with hummus in their own or in bowls, and they’d also be great in wraps or in pasta dishes. Maybe I could even make a sandwich with them… veggie sandwiches are amazing😍😍 Hope you like this recipe!!

Spiced Carrot Falafel

Serves: Makes 12 falafel

Total Time: 45 minutes

Ingredients:

Ingredients:

  • 1 can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp chilli powder
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup shredded carrots

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In a blender or food processor, blend the chickpeas, garlic and all of the spices until smooth and combined.
  3. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and stir in the shredded carrots.
  4. Scoop out a tablespoon of the falafel mixture and form into a flat disc, and place onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Repeat until you have about 12-15 falafels.
  5. Place the falafels in the oven, and let bake for 15 minutes before removing the pan and flipping them over. Bake for another 15-20 minutes on the other side.
  6. Remove the pan from the oven and let the falafel cool completely before enjoying;)

I wrote a list in my bullet journal of ways to keep busy during this time, and so I’ll try to share it in my Instagram page soon;) For now, stay safe and hang in there!

Yours Truly,

MyDayIsBooked;))