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- GLAZED LEMON CHIA SEED POUNDCAKE
Serving size: 9 This tart, mouth-puckering sweet treat is light, addictive and the perfect accompaniment to afternoon tea. I keep cutting myself a slice and find myself going back for more! I use chia seeds instead of poppy seeds for added fiber and health benefits to give it that crunchy textural component and I'm confident most people you serve this to won't even notice the difference. This loaf gives a taste of the classic lemon cake indulgence but with much healthier ingredients as it's made with a blend of gluten-free flour, almond flour, avocado oil, and is refined sugar free. INGREDIENTS • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose gluten-free flour • 1 cup almond flour • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda • 1 teaspoon baking powder • 1/4 teaspoon Himalayan pink salt • 1 tablespoon chia seeds • 1/3 cup avocado oil • 3/4 cup maple syrup • 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons oat milk • 1/3 cup lemon juice (for loaf) • 1 tablespoon lemon zest • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract • 1/2 cup powdered sugar • 2 tablespoons lemon juice (for glaze) I love baking with almond flour because it adds a dense crumb and nice moisture to baked goods. Bonus - it's extremely nutrient-dense, low carb, and high in protein. I make a concerted effort to formulate my recipes without any refined sugar and always try to use maple syrup, date sugar, coconut sugar etc. in its place. With that being said, I chose to still make the lemon glaze using classic powdered sugar because there really is no substitute to create that perfect glaze and it is such a minimal amount that's simply drizzled on at the end. DIRECTIONS Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Combine all of the dry ingredients in a bowl and mix. Combine all of the wet ingredients in a large bowl, whisk, then gradually incorporate the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients mixing thoroughly along the way. Line a 4.5 x 8.5 loaf pan with parchment paper and pour the batter into the pan. Bake for 55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Once the loaf is removed from the oven, allow it to sit and cool completely in the pan as it will continue to cook a little more. If you attempt to cut into it too soon, the center may be a little too moist still. While the loaf is cooling, stir the powdered sugar and 2 tablespoons lemon juice together until a glaze forms. Continue to stir until all lumps are removed. Once completely cool, drizzle the lemon glaze over the loaf and make sure the loaf is no longer warm or else the glaze will melt right off. Slice, serve, enjoy! The lemon glaze really takes it up a notch from homemade tasting to bakery level tasting. It's tangy, bright, fluffy, and so satisfying especially with a nice cup of earl grey tea. A slice of this is sure to brighten up your day, especially knowing that it's made with only good-for-you ingredients.
- LEMON FETA ZUCCHINI FUSILLI PASTA
Serving size: 2 This is one of my go-to dinners because it can be thrown together in under 20 minutes and requires very few ingredients. It also reminds me of a decadent lemon butter pasta dish you might get at a restaurant but is completely plant-based and a lot lighter on your body. INGREDIENTS • 1/2 package gluten-free rotini or fusilli pasta • 1 tablespoon olive oil • 1/2 red onion, sliced • 1 zucchini or yellow squash, sliced • 1 lemon, juiced • 3/4 cup vegan feta I normally try to limit my use of store-bought vegan cheeses but this dish absolutely calls for some plant-based feta. My all-time favorite to buy is the Follow Your Heart Feta Crumbles. For pasta, I love any and all chickpea or lentil variations. Some of my favorite brands include Al Dente (made from chickpeas), Cybele's (made from cauliflower, parsnips, & green lentils), and ZENB (made from yellow peas). DIRECTIONS Begin by slicing 1/2 a red onion into strips and slicing your zucchini or yellow squash into half moon pieces. Start cooking your pasta according to the package instructions. Add the tablespoon of olive oil to a sauté pan, followed by the sliced onions and sauté over medium heat until the onions become translucent (about 3 -5 minutes). Once the onions are translucent, add the zucchini to the pan and sauté until softened and no longer stiff (about 5 minutes). Once the zucchini is tender, lower the heat. Your pasta should be done cooking at this point. Drain and add the cooked pasta to the pan with onions and zucchini. Squeeze the juice of one whole lemon over the pan and stir. With your pan still on low heat, sprinkle in just 1/2 cup of the plant-based feta, stir together with the pasta and veggies and allow the feta to melt slightly. Plate your pasta into bowls and sprinkle on the remaining 1/4 cup of feta over top each dish. I could honestly eat this multiple nights a week for dinner. It's truly one of the most simple dishes to put together and I love that the ingredient list is only 6 ingredients long (many of which you probably already have on hand). It's rich in protein from the pasta, perfectly light tasting from the lemons, yet still creamy and rich from the vegan feta.
- SUPER SEED GRANOLA & MAPLE YOGURT
Serving size: 4 While a yogurt bowl isn't the most revolutionary breakfast, when you make your own yogurt from scratch and homemade granola, it really makes it feel and taste that much more special. Making plant-based yogurt sounds intimidating, but it's actually unbelievably simple and I love it for several reasons — you can taste the freshness, you have much more control over the ingredients and it's therefore more pure, and you can customize the level of sweetness to your exact preference. Whenever I buy plant-based yogurt at the store, the unsweetened version is too bland and the sweetened options are all overly sugary. Making my own yogurt allows me to get it just right. Plus, many store-bought yogurts contain added ingredients that reduce the overall health benefits. Even plain, organic plant-based yogurts may contain added gels, gums or flavorings that we're better off not consuming. This cashew based yogurt pairs perfectly with my homemade granola which has as many different kinds of seeds in it that I could pack in there (chia, hemp, flax, sunflower, and pumpkin) which is why I call it my super-seed granola bursting with healthy fats, protein, fiber, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. It's honestly the perfect combination of salty and sweet and I love to make a batch of it to enjoy throughout the week. It also makes for a nice little gift if you package some in mason jars and give to your friends and family (my mom loves when I make this and gift to her). YOGURT INGREDIENTS • 2 cups raw, unsalted cashews • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar • 1 1/2 cups fresh water • 2 teaspoons vegan probiotic powder • 2-3 tablespoons maple syrup If you don't have a jar of probiotics in powder form, you can split open and empty out the contents of 8 probiotic capsules instead. The directions for this yogurt will include steps for a simple fermentation process but if you don't care for your yogurt to have probiotics, you can skip this step and your yogurt can be made in half the time. It will be lacking the gut-boosting benefits; however, I'm throwing it out there if you're looking to speed the process up. I think 2 tablespoons of maple syrup is plenty for a perfectly balanced taste but if you like your yogurt on the sweeter side then use 3 tablespoons. Of course, you could do even more depending on your preferences, but part of the point in making it yourself is to avoid consuming excessive amounts of sugar. YOGURT DIRECTIONS Begin by soaking your cashews for at least 8 hours. Alternatively, you can soak your cashews in boiling hot water for as little as 30 minutes up to a few hours. Many of my recipes call for soaked nuts and this little trick definitely comes in handy. Just keep in mind that the longer you soak your nuts, the creamier your end product will be. After your cashews have finished soaking, drain them from the soaking water and add them to a high-powered blender. Add the apple cider vinegar and a fresh 1 1/2 cups of water to the blender and blend until completely smooth and creamy. Transfer the mixture to a glass or ceramic bowl and stir in the probiotic powder, mixing thoroughly to combine. Next, cover the yogurt with a cheesecloth or paper towel, secure with a rubber band and store in a dark, semi-warm environment for 24 hours (a microwave or oven that are not in use are good spots). After the 24 hours is up, stir in your desired amount of maple syrup, cover once more and refrigerate for at least 24 hours before serving. (If you choose to skip the fermentation process, add the maple syrup to the blender mixture and transfer directly to the fridge.) GRANOLA INGREDIENTS • 2 cups oats • 1/3 cup chopped walnuts • 1/3 cup chopped almonds • 1/3 cup chopped macadamia nuts • 2 tablespoons chia seeds • 1 tablespoon hemp seeds • 1 tablespoon ground flaxseeds • 1 tablespoon sunflower seeds • 1 tablespoon pumpkin seeds • 1 teaspoon cinnamon • 3/4 teaspoon Himalayan pink salt • 2 tablespoons avocado oil • 1/4 cup maple syrup • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract • 1/2 cup chopped dates GRANOLA DIRECTIONS Preheat your oven to 250 degrees. In a large bowl, combine the oats, walnuts, almonds, macadamia nuts, chia, hemp, flax, sunflower, and pumpkin seeds followed by the cinnamon and salt. Combine the avocado oil, maple syrup, and vanilla in a small bowl then pour over the dry ingredients and mix thoroughly. Spread the granola out in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake for 1 hour 10 minutes. You can check on it periodically and stir but it is not entirely necessary. Most of the time I throw this in the oven, go do other tasks and come back just in time to take it out. It's nice that it's pretty low maintenance after simply combining all the ingredients and placing in the oven. Once done baking, allow to cool completely then sprinkle in the chopped date pieces and toss to combine. Transfer to airtight containers and store for several weeks in the fridge. Combining these two recipes is a match made in heaven. The yogurt is ultra creamy, rich, and decadent alongside the crunchy, chewy, and toasty granola. Top with fresh fruit, bee pollen and whatever else your heart desires and you have one seriously filling breakfast that's notably more nutrient dense than any store-bought version of the two and minimally processed in comparison. I also love that you can completely customize both recipes. Try blending fresh fruit into your yogurt mixture or swapping out the oats for quinoa, swapping any of the nuts for pistachios, brazil nuts or cashews, swapping the avocado oil for coconut oil, and even swapping out the dates for goji berries or any dried fruit of your choice — the possibilities and combinations are truly endless and I can't wait to see your variation!
- FRESH FIG CITRUS OLIVE OIL CAKE
Serving size: 8 I love a good olive oil cake because it's almost a cross between cornbread and cake. A well made one is usually moist, super rich, and subtly sweet. This recipe is made with orange juice to give it that fresh, bright taste and to ensure we get a perfectly moist cake. Because this is made with a generous portion of olive oil, it's full of vitamins, healthy fats, and polyphenols. Olive oil is particularly rich in oleic acid, a fatty acid that improves inflammatory markers and reduces oxidative stress. Not to worry, we'll be baking the cake at a low enough temperature for all of these benefits to remain in tact. INGREDIENTS • 2 cups all-purpose gluten-free flour • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil • 3/4 cup maple syrup • 3/4 cup orange juice • 2 teaspoons baking powder • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract • 3/4 teaspoon Himalayan pink salt • handful fresh figs I used a variety of fresh figs (black mission, tiger, and heirloom) to create a more interesting design. It's always important to be mindful of heating oils to an appropriate level because they will not only lose their nutritive value once passed their smoke point, but also produce harmful free radicals passed that point as well. Olive oil's smoke point is between 375-405 degrees which is why we are strategically baking the cake at 350 degrees. DIRECTIONS Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Combine all the dry ingredients in a large bowl, then add all of the wet ingredients and stir thoroughly. Grease an 8 inch cake pan with olive oil and pour the batter into the pan. Slice your figs and arrange on top of the cake in your desired pattern. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Allow to cool completely then dust with powdered sugar. Slice, serve, and enjoy! Olive oil cake is the ideal combination of savory and sweet when it comes to baked goods and I love that this creates another avenue to utilize olive oil besides a typical pasta dish or salad. Its sweet application is incredibly satisfying and even more satisfying knowing that olive oil contains nutrients that fight inflammation.
- HONEYDEW CUCUMBER ALOE MOCKTAIL
Serving size: 2 I've been getting some variation of this mocktail when I've been out lately and decided to make a few tweaks of my own for greater health benefits and without the refined sugars and syrups that are commonly used in restaurants. I've sweetened this drink naturally using honeydew melon and green grapes and included a serving of aloe vera juice for its health supportive qualities. INGREDIENTS • 1/2 cucumber, peeled • 1 cup cubed honeydew melon • 1 cup green grapes • 1 lime, juiced • 2 tablespoons aloe vera juice • a dozen fresh mint leaves I use this brand of aloe vera juice because of it's pure production process and because of its mild, less bitter flavor compared to other brands. If you've ever tried straight aloe vera juice, you'll know it's not the most pleasant taste, but this one is more flavorless than others. Aloe vera juice is anti-inflammatory, rich in antioxidants, helps balance blood sugar, improves collagen production, reduces the appearance of wrinkles, and is incredible for digestion. DIRECTIONS Add the peeled cucumber, melon, grapes, lime juice, and fresh mint to a blender and blend until completely smooth. Pour the mixture through a fine mesh strainer over a bowl and refrigerate until completely chilled. Once chilled, divide the mixture between 2 glasses over ice and stir in 1 tablespoon of aloe juice per glass. Garnish with cucumber slices, fresh mint, or lime wedges. This mocktail is an instant refresher and is a convenient way to get a serving of aloe juice in. I love being able to slip in ingredients that are less than pleasant on their own and incorporate them in a truly delicious recipe. At one point in time, I was aiming to consume aloe juice every day but eventually stopped because it became too unpleasant. With a recipe like this, I'm now able to consume something like aloe juice that I wouldn't otherwise be able to.
- CAULIFLOWER JICAMA NORI HAND ROLLS
Serving size: 3 I love to make these whenever I'm in the mood for sushi at home. They come together quickly and are perfectly light and refreshing, yet surprisingly very filling. Instead of actual white rice, I make a rice alternative from a blend of both cauliflower and jicama. These rolls are packed with fiber from the "rice" blend, abundant in healthy fats from the avocado and loaded with tons of vitamins from the nori and vegetables. INGREDIENTS • 4 cups cauliflower florets • 2 cups jicama, cubed • 2 tablespoons mirin • 2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar • 1 teaspoon salt • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds • 1 tablespoon kelp flakes • 1 teaspoon onion powder • 1 teaspoon umami seasoning • 3 large carrots • 1 cucumber • 1 avocado • 3 nori sheets • 1/2 cup microgreens I use this umami seasoning blend from Whole Foods. Jicama is like a savory apple — crisp, crunchy and white with a high water content, just not as sweet as an apple. Because jicama is 85% water and high in fiber, it's extremely beneficial for digestion and gut health. In fact, Jicama is specifically rich in inulin, a prebiotic fiber that helps feed the beneficial bacteria in your gut. DIRECTIONS Add your cauliflower and jicama to a food processor and pulse until the mixture resembles a crumb texture similar to white rice. You may need to do this in 2 batches to make sure you get all the pieces chopped down enough in the food processor. Also, be careful not to over pulse or else the mixture will become too mushy. Add this mixture to a bowl and toss with the mirin, rice wine vinegar, and salt. Set this mixture aside in the fridge while you prep your vegetables and the rest of the dish. In a small bowl, combine the sesame seeds, kelp flakes, onion powder, and umami seasoning. This blend will be sprinkled inside the hand rolls before rolling and also sprinkled once more after rolling. Using a mandolin, julienne your carrots and cucumber. You can also cut these long thin strips by hand but I don't recommend it. Slice your avocado into strips as well and set aside. For the nori sheets, they will likely come in a large rectangular shape. You will need to cut the sheet in half lengthwise to create an even thinner rectangular shape. It should measure roughly 4 x 9 inches after cutting. Position the nori sheet lengthwise in front of you and begin by placing some of the cauliflower rice mixture only on the left side (covering only about 1/4 of the sheet). Spread and flatten out the cauliflower rice only this small area, then sprinkle your seasoning mixture on top. Next, place your carrot and cucumber sticks at a diagonal angle with the top ends sticking towards the upper left corner of the nori sheet. Add the avocado slices and sprinkle the micro greens on top of the veggies. To roll, fold up the bottom left corner of the sheet towards the top edge to form a triangle and continue to roll until a cone shape forms. This will take some practice if you've never done it before. Once the nori is in a cone shape, I like to sprinkle more of the seasoning blend on the open end of the roll. Serve with additional microgreens, avocado slices and enjoy. I love how these rolls make a sushi dish accessible at home and unlike a roll that you would get at a restaurant, it won't spike your blood sugar due to the swap of white rice for fiber rich, nutrient dense cauliflower-jicama rice.
- BLACK BEAN CACAO BROWNIES
Serving size: 9 Black bean brownies might be one of my best recipe remake deceptions of all time. Not one single person I have served these to has ever guessed that there are black beans hidden inside. They taste like a good old-fashioned ooey-gooey, decadent and rich chocolate treat but are secretly packed with fiber, protein, antioxidants and more. Plus, the combination of protein & fiber in here won't cause your blood sugar to spike and will actually digest slowly in the body keeping you fuller for longer — now that's exactly how I want to end the night, satiated and satisfied. INGREDIENTS • 1 1/2 cups black beans (one 15 oz can) • 1/2 cup oat flour • 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons maple syrup • 1/4 cup avocado oil • 2 tablespoons cacao powder • 3 teaspoons vanilla extract • 3/4 teaspoon salt • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder • 1/2 cup vegan semisweet chocolate chunks Avocado oil is great for baking because it has a neutral flavor and a high smoke point which means it doesn't release toxic compounds when it reaches a high temperature. Plus, avocado oil is rich in anti-inflammatory and antioxidant compounds, as well as vitamin E. I exclusively use the Enjoy Life brand of semisweet chocolate chunks because I've found them to be the best tasting chocolate chips, even including non-vegan chocolate chip brands. DIRECTIONS Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Combine all the ingredients (except the chocolate chunks) in a food processor or high-powered blender and purée until completely smooth. Remove the batter from the food processor, stir in the chocolate chunks, then pour into a greased 8 x 8 square baking pan. At this point, I like to sprinkle several more chocolate chunks on top. Bake the brownies for 15-18 minutes and allow them to cool completely before cutting. Feel free to stir in and/or top the brownies with any other add-ins of your choice before baking such as walnuts, pecans, cacao nibs, flaked sea salt, or even some vegan mini marshmallows. These are equal parts cakey, chewy, and fudgey with an intensely rich chocolate flavor and a dense, super moist texture. Brownies are a timeless hit and making them with black beans significantly boosts their nutritional profile. Let's not also forget that using nutrient-dense *cacao* instead of processed *cocoa* adds an additional boost of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals shown to improve mood, metabolism, and skin health.
- CUCUMBER MELON FETA MINT SALAD
Serving size: 2 This dish is the epitome of a light and juicy summer refresher — perfect as a starter, side dish, or snack. It's packed with immune-boosting & skin-beautifying carotenoids from the melons and comes together rather quickly. Because watermelon, cantaloupe, and cucumber all contain up to 90 percent water, it's also ultra hydrating. INGREDIENTS • 4 tablespoons champagne vinegar • 2 tablespoons raw honey • 1/8 teaspoon salt • 1 shallot • handful fresh mint leaves • 2 tablespoons pistachio oil (or olive oil) • 2 cups cubed watermelon • 2 cups cubed cantaloupe • 2 mini cucumbers • 1/4 cup vegan feta • 2 tablespoons crushed pistachios Pistachio oil has a high concentration of linoleic acid, fatty acids, and vitamin E — all incredible for skin health. Pistachio oil isn't commonly found in most stores, so if you'd like to use I'd recommend ordering online. I love all of La Tourangelle's cooking oils and they make a great Roasted Pistachio Oil. DIRECTIONS Begin by making the vinaigrette. In a small bowl, add the champagne vinegar, honey, salt and whisk to combine. Cut your shallot into very fine, thin slices (I highly recommend using a mandolin for this). Add your thinly sliced shallots to the vinaigrette mixture and toss to coat the shallots in the liquid. Add a few fresh mint leaves to this mixture and set aside in the fridge for roughly 10 minutes while you assemble the rest of the salad. Using the mandolin once more, slice the mini cucumbers into very thin ribbons length wise. Arrange the cubed watermelon, cantaloupe, and cucumber ribbons in a bowl, followed by a drizzle of pistachio oil. Remove the shallot vinaigrette mixture from the fridge, take out several of the sliced shallots from the mixture and add on top of your melons and cucumber. Drizzle the salad with some of the vinaigrette, pistachio oil, and salt to taste. Finish with a sprinkle of vegan feta, crushed pistachios, and more fresh mint leaves. Interestingly, the phytonutrient lycopene found in watermelon is actually better absorbed in the presence of fat so the pistachio oil in this salad is a perfect pairing. The mint in here also stimulates digestive enzymes which help facilitate better absorption of nutrients from food and when the body is able to absorb nutrients properly, your metabolism is also improved.
- SUPERFOOD MACADAMIA MATCHA LATTE
Serving size: 1 This is one of my favorite things to drink ever and is honestly the highlight of my morning. I truly look forward to waking up and sipping on this to start my day. I absolutely love macadamia milk (especially my homemade recipe) and it pairs so perfectly with the matcha and spirulina. I promise, you will never want to go back to your plain old matcha and milk latte after this — I'm honestly addicted. MATCHA LATTE INGREDIENTS • 1 cup homemade macadamia milk* (recipe below) • 1 1/2 teaspoons matcha • 1 - 2 tablespoons date sugar • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla powder • 1/4 teaspoon spirulina My favorite brand of date sugar is by Let's Date, available at Whole Foods or on amazon here. If you are using my homemade macadamia milk recipe to make your latte, you likely only need 1 tablespoon of the date sugar for your latte. Make sure you use a high quality, pure vanilla powder. I use this Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Powder from Whole Foods but there are many other high quality brands out there. MACADAMIA MILK INGREDIENTS • 1 cup raw macadamia nuts (soaked for 2 hours) • 3 cups water • 1/8 teaspoon Himalayan pink salt • 2 whole dates, pitted • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla powder You can buy macadamia milk at the store but I can confidently say it does not compare to this homemade version. When making homemade nut milks, be sure your nuts of choice are always raw and not toasted or salted. MACADAMIA MILK DIRECTIONS Place the macadamia nuts in a bowl and cover with room temperature water and allow to soak for 2 hours. Once the nuts have finished soaking, strain out all of the water from the bowl and discard. Place the macadamia nuts and 3 cups of fresh water, along with the salt, dates, and vanilla into a high-powered blender. Blend until smooth, then pour the contents of the blender through a nut milk bag over a bowl. Wring out the bag to squeeze all the milk out (this recipe will make about 3 cups of milk). Pour the milk from the bowl into glass jars and enjoy throughout the week. I use these nut milk bags because they are reusable, easy to use & clean, and also filter out the nut milk pulp perfectly. MATCHA LATTE DIRECTIONS Pour 1 cup of the macadamia milk into your frother followed by the matcha, date sugar, vanilla powder, and spirulina. Set your frother on the heat and foam function and let it do the rest! Once complete, pour into your favorite mug and enjoy. Spirulina is considered the most nutrient dense food on the planet so I love how this incorporates it into my morning latte that I'm having anyway. Because the matcha is already green, you wouldn't even notice that it's in there. Elevating my matcha with this simple addition makes me feel so good — I truly see and feel all the health & beauty benefits that come with it. Both matcha and spirulina alone are nutritional powerhouses, so this latte combo featuring both of them has been one of my favorite practices, not to mention that it tastes incredible.
- ALMOND SESAME SEED FALAFELS
Serving size: 12 While falafels are already typically vegan, they're not always gluten-free and are usually deep fried. My version is both gluten-free and offers a healthier alternative to deep frying by baking them. Falafels are naturally packed with plant protein thanks to all the chickpeas, as well as countless other micronutrients & antioxidants from the variety of fresh herbs, onion, and garlic. INGREDIENTS • 1 cup *dried* chickpeas (cannot be canned) • 4 cloves garlic • 1/2 medium yellow onion • 2 to 4 tablespoons almond flour • 2 tablespoons ground flaxseeds • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder • 1 teaspoon sea salt • white pepper to taste • 2 tablespoons parsley, finely minced • 2 tablespoons mint, finely minced • 1/3 cup cilantro, finely minced • 1/4 cup sesame seeds It is absolutely CRUCIAL that you use DRIED chickpeas and not chickpeas from a can to make falafels. If you attempt to use chickpeas out of a can, they will turn out as complete mush. If you're used to only buying chickpeas out of a can, you can find dried chickpeas in the same section of the grocery store usually in a bag like this. DIRECTIONS To make the falafels, begin by placing the dried chickpeas into a large bowl and cover with about 3 inches of cold water. Let these soak for at least 4 hours or overnight then drain, rinse, and set aside. You will be left with approximately 3 cups of beans after they're done soaking. In a food processor, pulse the garlic a few times then add the onion and pulse again. Next, add all of the soaked chickpeas, almond flour, flaxseeds, baking powder, salt, pepper and pulse everything together. Once combined, scrape the mixture into a large bowl, add the finely minced parsley, mint, and cilantro and stir to combine. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1-2 hours. After refrigeration is complete, preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Start forming the falafels into your desired shape — round balls or patties (I like to make them into balls). At this point, you can also taste-test the mixture and adjust seasoning as needed. Additionally, if the mixture isn't sticking together easily, you may want to add a touch more of the almond flour. Before adding the falafels to a baking sheet, gently roll each one in sesame seeds. This step is entirely optional and not necessary but will make for an even crunchier falafel. Lightly grease a sheet pan and arrange the shaped falafels on the pan. Using a basting brush, lightly brush the falafels with oil. Alternatively, you can spray them with oil. This will help the falafels develop better color and an outer golden layer in the baking process. Bake for approximately 15-20 minutes, or until cooked all the way through and slightly golden on the outside. Falafels are best served immediately after cooking while they're still warm and crispy! Serving options range from inside a pita wrap to on a salad, as part of a Mediterranean bowl, as an appetizer/snack with vegan tzatziki, or even in a burger as the patty. My favorite way to enjoy these falafels is with a homemade whipped garlic spread and roasted beets as pictured above. These can get addicting with their crispy outside and soft, crumbly chickpea dough inside but luckily this recipe makes a batch with plenty of leftovers to enjoy throughout the week in a variety of different applications.