Posts Tagged ‘bbq’

BBQ Polenta Bites


Last year for the Super Bowl, my friend Amelia (who created this hummus and helped with my Aussie header above), strolled into my super bowl party with Buffalo Polenta Bites. At that point, I had had polenta exactly zero times. It’s just not something we ever had around the house. After trying them though, I couldn’t get them out of my head. They were SO good.


Since then, I have thought of those buffalo bites at least once a  month and always tell myself that I need to try and make them. As polenta is not something I normally have and frying the heck out of pseudo-cornmeal screams ‘special occasion’, I just never really got around to trying this recipe out.

Plus, it sort of scared me because I seriously always think placenta in my head. True story. Even as I’m typing this, I keep triple checking myself. Cause really, those are just not two things that you should get mixed up. Ever.


Anyway, as I’m currently kicking it in Australia, I’m not sure if I will be able to watch the Super Bowl but I couldn’t resist a chance to recreate Amelia’s recipe. Of course, I couldn’t find Buffalo Sauce here which sort of breaks my heart, so I had to go the BBQ route. Feel free to sub your favorite kind of sauce for BBQ sauce. I imagine it would taste great with Buffalo, teryaki or hoisin sauce. Whatever floats your boat!


BBQ Polenta Bites
inspired by Amelia and based off of Taste.com.au

  • 3 C. of water
  • 3/4 C. instant polenta
  • 1 TBSP of vegan butter (I used nuttelex lite)
  • 1/8 C. nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 c. flour
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika (or more to taste)
  • vegetable oil
  • 1/4-1/2 C. BBQ sauce

Grease a small cookie sheet and set aside.

Bring water to a simmer in a saucepan over medium heat. Gradually add polenta in a thin stream, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to low and cook for 3-5 minutes, continuing to stir constantly, until the polenta is thick and soft. Stir in the butter, nutritional yeast and salt and pepper to taste.

Pour the polenta into the prepared pan and smooth the surface. Set aside to cool. Once cool, cover and place in fridge to set. I checked mine after an hour and it was all set.

Cut the polenta into bite size pieces, mine came to about 20. Mix the flour, smoked paprika, salt and pepper together. Add the polenta and toss to coat.

Heat vegetable oil in a non-stick pan over medium heat. You want enough vegetable oil so that when you lay your polenta in the pan, it hits your pieces at the mid-way mark. So the amount of oil will depend on the sizes of your polenta bites and your pan.

Add the polenta bites to your pan a few at a time. You do not want to crowd your pan so make sure you have plenty of room for your bites to cook. I fit 7 pieces into my frying pan at one time. Cook for 4 minutes on each side or until golden. Transfer to a plate lined with a paper towel.

Once all your polenta bites have been fried and are cool, place them in a large mixing bowl. Add about 1/4 C of BBQ sauce and toss gently with a large spoon until covered. Add more BBQ sauce if needed. The amount will depend on the type of BBQ sauce used and the number of bites you have.


So now for the all important question- Who are you voting for in the super bowl? I’m routing for the Broncos and Welker. If you follow my blog at all, you know Welker holds a dear place in my Dad’s heart. It was a sad, sad day in our house when he was traded from the Patriots.  So this is our chance to root for the guy once again and what kind of daughter would I be if I didn’t take this chance to cheer on my Dad’s man crush? I mean, Come on!  So, let me know if you will be joining my Dad and me as we cheer on Welker or if you are throwing in your lot with the Seahawks. Look, I even included a poll so you can vote. I’m getting fancy up in here! After you vote, leave a comment and tell me what you’re making. I’m living vicariously through you guys. Help a girl out!

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As someone who had been a vegetarian for 15 years before switching to veganism, I seriously do not get this whole bacon trend.

Bacon on cupcakes.

Bacon covered in chocolate.

Bacon in everything!

I don’t get it. Cupcakes had a good solid bacon-less run. I don’t feel like they were lacking.

With that said, I was having a recipe funk this weekend and was going through all my old recipe print outs (I collect recipes and cook books like some people collect cats…it’s scary…) when I came across this recipe. It had fake bacon AND fake mayo yet, it called to me. Maybe it was the avocado. Or maybe it was the thought of buying a fresh tomato at the farmers market and actually using it! Or maybe those three magical letters- BBQ- won be over.

Whatever the reason, I found myself reluctantly joining the bacon bandwagon this weekend and making a BLTA.

oh ok…the pseudo-bacon bandwagon. Whatever!

Anyway, it was good. Real good!

I suspect that was the BBQ Aioli that my sandwich was practically swimming in, though, not so much the faux bacon.

Chipotle BBQ BLTA
from Healthy Bitch Daily
one serving

  • 2 pieces of bread (HBD recommends sour dough. I used When Pigs Can Fly Tuscan Wheat)
  • 2-3 slices of tempeh bacon
  • 1 romaine leaf or a tiny handful of baby spinach (ok, so technically I made a BSTA sandwich…whatever!)
  • 2-3 slices of fresh tomato
  • 1/4 avocado, sliced or mashed
  • spoonful of Chipotle BBQ Aioli (see below)

Combine everything into a delicious sandwich, smoosh down so it’s bitable and consume. Keep lots of napkins handy cause it can get messy!

Chipotle BBQ Aioli

  • 1 cup of Vegenaise
  • 2-4 oz extra virgin olive oil (I used 2)
  • 2-3 drops of lemon juice (to help separation)
  • 1-2 TBSP chipotle pepper adobo sauce (juice from the peppers, not the peppers themselves)
  • 1 TBSP garlic, minced or pureed
  • 1-2 TBSP vegan BBQ sauce (I used Bone Suckin’ sauce…I may have also used 3-4 TBSPs…)

Place Vegenaise in a bowl and whisk in olive oil until blended; add a few drops of lemon juice if it starts to separate. Add all other ingredients, blend, and allow the mixture to stand for approximately 3o minutes.

I served this with a side of Kale chips and a ton of napkins. Because it was really good in that messy sort of way where you are left licking Chipotle BBQ Aioli off your fingers. Yum!

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BBQ Chili


Within the last few weeks, one of the posts that got the most hits was the BBQ Tofu Pitas. One can conclude from these statistics that either you A. Really like BBQ or B. you were really bored on January 5. Chances are its the latter but I’m just going to pretend that your obsession with BBQ sauce is as pathetic as mine.

I could have said C. really like tofu, but let’s be honest. No one really likes tofu. It’s just kind of a wiggly mass of soy you use as a vehicle for awesomeness like BBQ.

Now, since I’m banking on A. being the reason that that post got so many hits, one can hypothesize that by posting this BBQ chili recipe, that it will also get above average hits per day.

Clearly, I was super good at science…

BBQ Chili
directly from Oh she glows, because this recipe was too frickin’ good to change!
serves 5


  • 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 sweet onion, peeled and chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
  • 1 red pepper, chopped
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped (optional)
  • 2.5 tbsp chili powder, or to taste
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika (optional)
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (or crushed red pepper flakes)
  • 1 1/4 cup dry/uncooked black beans*
  • 6 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 (28-oz) can diced tomatoes, liquid drained
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste, to thicken
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds (or ground flax), to thicken (I used ground flax)
  • 1 cup frozen corn
  • 2 tbsp your fav BBQ sauce (I used  1/4 c. Bone Suckin’ Sauce)**
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt, or to taste
  • couple handfuls of chopped spinach, or other greens like collard, kale, etc (I used baby spinach)

1. Soak the beans in water overnight or for at least 3-4 hours. This part is optional, but it helps reduce cook time and makes the beans more digestible. Rinse and drain beans before using. In a large pot, add the oil and sauté the onion and garlic over medium-low heat for about 5-6 minutes, until translucent.

2. Add in the pepper and optional jalapeno and sauté for another 3-5 minutes.

3. Stir in the spices (chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika, cayenne) and sauté on low another couple minutes. If you want, you can add just a bit for now and then add the rest to taste after it has cooked.

4. Add the dry black beans, broth, and drained diced tomatoes. Stir well. Now stir in the tomato paste. Simmer on low with the lid ajar for about 2.5 hours, checking often to make sure it doesn’t dry out. If it does, add a bit more broth to thin out.

5. About 15 minutes before it’s done cooking, stir in the flax, corn, and chopped greens. Also stir in the BBQ sauce, starting with 1 tbsp at a time and tasting as you go. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Can be made 2-3 days in advance and frozen if preferred.

Note: You can probably use canned beans, but you won’t need as much broth. I would add it slowly.

*Oh She Glows original recipe called for 1/2 c. dried black eye beans and 3/4 cup of black beans. I couldn’t find dried black eye beans anywhere in whole foods so I just used black beans. I think it worked really well. There’s so much going on in the chili, one type of bean was not a problem.

Also, I think I’m a total dry bean convert! Yes, I had to soak them over night but how is that any different from remembering to take the chicken out to thaw for dinner or something? They were so fresh and had a nice bite to them and weren’t slimey at all. I’m totally switching to dry beans…you know…until I grow super lazy and stalk up on cans…

** I’m OBSESSED with Bone Suckin’ sauce. OBSESSED! I just needed to repeat that incase you missed it capitalized the first time. It taste JUST like the McDonalds BBQ which I never get to eat anymore because I would rather commit some heinous crime then eat there. But, their BBQ sauce was always my favorite. I liked to get french fries at Burger King and BBQ sauce at McDonalds. It totally worked! The only thing about this Bone Suckin’ Sauce (which despite the name is totally vegan) is that it is thinner then most BBQ sauce so I added 1/4 c. into the chili…and then I may  have added a few more TBSP to each bowl of this I ate because I love it so much…and then I may have had a spoonful one night at like 12 pm when I was aimlessly meandering around the kitchen for something to eat.

I’m weird though, so I wouldn’t recommend doing that.

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