Easy Vegetarian Curry

Check out this easy vegetarian curry!

Easy vegetarian curry! With garbanzo beans, sweet potatoes, and kale, this dish makes a perfect lunch or dinner. #katielean #curry #vegetarian #sweetpotato #kale #onion #chickpeas #garbanzobeans #recipes #easy #traderjoes

It isn’t a classic curry, but it’s quick, delicious, and perfect as a summer meal.

Is using a pre-made sauce cheating?  Maybe, but Trader Joe’s Thai Red Curry Sauce is incredibly good so take it or leave it!

Trader Joe’s makes so many great sauces – including another type of curry sauce.  Next time you’re there check them out, it’s definitely worth your while!

Easy Vegetarian Curry


  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 white onion, small
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 sweet potato, medium
  • 1 cup chickpeas, drained
  • 1 medium bunch kale
  • Trader Joe's Thai Red Curry Sauce


  1. Peel and dice garlic into tiny pieces. Roughly chop onion.
  2. Chop sweet potato and kale into bite-sized pieces.
  3. Heat olive oil in large saute pan or skillet.
  4. Add garlic and onion to pan, heat until fragrant and the onion just begins to brown.
  5. Add sweet potato, kale, and chickpeas to pan.
  6. Pour about 1/2 cup water into the pan, cover.
  7. Let simmer, covered, on medium heat until sweet potatoes become soft, about 20 minutes. Stir occasionally.
  8. Remove lid and add 1/4 cup curry sauce, stir well.
  9. Add more sauce to taste.
  10. Continue to cook on medium heat until the water boils off.
  11. Serve hot.
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I used canned chickpeas because they cook faster.  If you’re using dried I would cook them separately before adding them to the pan.

Easy vegetarian curry! With garbanzo beans, sweet potatoes, and kale, this dish makes a perfect lunch or dinner. #katielean #curry #vegetarian #sweetpotato #kale #onion #chickpeas #garbanzobeans #recipes #easy #traderjoes

Brown rice and/or naan bread would be delicious with this meal.

Let me know if you try out this recipe!

Fall Vegetable Lentil Soup

Happy Halloween!  In honor of fall and the holiday I’m bringing you an easy, delicious soup recipe.

Soups are a staple in any ghost, ghoul, or monster diet.  Especially when they’re green, orange, or purple. 😉 Depending on the veggies you choose for this recipe you can make any of those colors!

Fall Vegetable Lentil Soup | katielean

I chose butternut squash and rutabaga because I had just made some great squash purees and had received a fresh rutabaga in my CSA.

Here are some other combos that would work really well:

-Sweet potato and butternut squash

-Carrot and parsnip

-Purple potato and beet

-Pumpkin and leek

-Any other combo of fall veggies you think would satisfy your tastebuds!

Fall Vegetable Lentil Soup | katielean

That’s some vegan pumpkin bread…the recipe isn’t perfect yet but I’ll be posting it once I get it 100% right!

Here’s the recipe I used:

Fall Vegetable Lentil Soup

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes

Yield: Serves 4


  • 1 medium white or yellow onion, chopped
  • Olive oil to coat the bottom of the pan
  • S+P, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 large rutabaga, chopped
  • 1 sandwich-sized bag of butternut squash puree (about 2 1/2 cups)
  • 3-4 cups green lentils, soaked overnight or at least for 4-6 hours
  • Water


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan on medium heat.
  2. Once hot, add onion, salt & pepper, garlic powder, and turmeric powder. Sauté until the onions soften and are fragrant.
  3. Add the rutabaga and stir for about 5 minutes so it just begins to cook.
  4. Add the butternut squash puree and lentils.
  5. Pour water into the pan to just submerge all the ingredients.
  6. Cook until rutabaga is soft, about 30 minutes (I took a piece out and tasted it to make sure there was no crunch left).
  7. Remove from heat and add more water to cool it down (and because it's likely more stew-like than soup-like at this point).
  8. If you have an immersion blender use it to blend the ingredients to make a consistency similar to a bisque (mine was a little bit thicker than one).
  9. If you don't have an immersion blender you can use a food processor or regular blender to blend smaller amounts of soup at a time. Make sure it's cooled down quite a bit before doing this, unless you want splattered soup all over your kitchen and potential burns!
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Serve with a slice of fresh bread and a dessert of Halloween candy. 🙂

Fall Vegetable Lentil Soup | katielean

To use other fall vegetables, just substitute the butternut squash and rutabaga and keep everything else the same.  You could also substitute red or brown lentils for the green ones, or use coconut oil instead of olive.

To make the butternut squash puree, preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Cut the squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the inside seeds and stringy bits.  Place flat-side-down in a roasting pan and pour in about 1/4-inch to a 1/2-inch of water.  This helps prevent them from getting too dry.  Depending on the size of the squash, roast for 30-50 minutes.  A fork should be able to poke right through the skin.  Scoop out the “meat” of the squash, let cool, then puree in a blender or food processor to achieve a smooth consistency.  Depending on how dry your squash was, you may need to add water.  You can use the puree right away or freeze to use at a later date!

Fall Vegetable Lentil Soup | katielean

I hope everyone has a delightfully spooky and safe Halloween!

Go ahead and give this fall vegetable lentil soup a try.  Happy cooking!



How to Make Vegan Soup From Scratch

Soup has to be one of my favorite meal categories.  There are soups for all seasons, unexpected soups, classic soups, warm ones, and cold ones.  In the fall, making soup or stew is a great way to use up all of the suddenly-plentiful veggies you have in your fridge.

I believe that making soup from scratch is an art form.  It’s very hard to get a soup to come out exactly the same each time you make it.  But if you know what you’re doing, each one is a masterpiece in itself.

Can you tell I love soup?!

How To Make Vegan Soup From Scratch | katielean


People often think that they need to have vegetable broth or stock to make soup, but I’ve found this isn’t always the case!  If you have a vegan, low or no-sodium broth that you really like, then by all means use it.  But if you don’t that’s OK too.  If you want to make your own vegetable broth check out this how-to guide on “Oh My Veggies”.

For soups like pho (the largest picture above) where the broth is very important I would follow a recipe like this one.  Making a simple miso broth is really easy because it requires only miso paste like Miso Master’s (I get it at Whole Foods) and hot water!  For soups with lots of veggies and specific spices, all that matters is the order that you put the ingredients in the pot (I’ll talk more about this below).


You can add all sorts of grains to soup.  It’s all about your flavor palette and what you think will go best with the veggies and broth you’ve got on hand.  I recommend cooking your grains before adding them in, but if you were really short on time (or dishes) you could just add extra water and cook them in your soup pot with your other ingredients.  Here is a great chart with grain cooking times and water-to-grain ratios!

Pasta also falls into this category, just make sure to double check that it’s vegan if that’s what you’re looking for.  There are Annie Chun’s Maifun Brown Rice Noodles – which I got at a great price from Thrive Market – in the lower right soup pictured above (that one’s a miso soup).  These are great quick-cooking noodles that are a healthier option than ramen!

Legumes and Beans

Legumes and beans add serious nutrition to vegan soups.  Lentils, black beans, and split peas are some of my favorites to add in.  You should definitely soak them overnight before you use them so that they will cook faster once added to your soup (also to reduce phytic acid if that’s something you’re mindful of).  For example, before I go to bed I’ll add some lentils to a pan and add enough water to submerge them, covering the pan with a lid.  When I wake up I’ll carefully drain then replace the water.  Then right before I’m about to add them to my soup (usually a couple hours before dinner time) I’ll rinse them once more with water.


There’s no limit to the combinations of vegetables you can add to vegan soup.  I’ve got some ideas to share with you to inspire you, though:

  • Asian Soups:
    • Chinese cabbage
    • Bok Choy
    • Mung bean sprouts
    • Mushrooms
    • Seaweed
    • Scallions
    • Carrots
  • Mexican Soups:
    • Tomato
    • Bell Pepper
    • Jalapeno
    • Yellow onion
    • Corn
    • Potato
  • Chili:
    • Butternut squash
    • Sweet potato
    • Zucchini
    • Potato
    • Pumpkin
    • Onion
    • Tomato

Other Add-Ins

Herbs, spices, oils, and things like garlic cloves and fresh ginger are great additions to vegan soups.  But I’d like to let you in on a little vegan soup secret…NUTRITIONAL YEAST!!  This is the key to adding delicious umami taste and depth of flavor to a vegan soup.  It’s the thing that can take a basic mix of veggies and lentils and turn it into a wholehearted soup.  Check out this article on why you should be using nutritional yeast in your cooking.

Recipe Sample

It wouldn’t be a food post unless I gave you a sample recipe!  I made this soup last week with the ingredients from my first CSA of the fall.  It’s also the top right picture in the graphic above.

Hearty Vegan Vegetable Soup

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour

Yield: Serves 4-5


  • Olive oil to thinly coat the bottom of the pan
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 white onion, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 2 tablespoons thyme
  • 1 tablespoon each of salt and pepper
  • 3 medium sized carrots, chopped
  • 2 medium sized potatoes, chopped
  • 3-4 cups dried green lentils, soaked overnight (see tips from above)
  • Water to nearly fill pan and submerge the ingredients
  • Lots of nutritional yeast (this one is up to your personal flavor preference, I used about 1/4 cup)
  • 3-4 stalks worth of beet greens


  1. Choose a large saucepan with a lid.
  2. Heat up the olive oil then add the garlic, onion, turmeric, thyme, and S+P. Stir until the onions soften and everything is fragrant. This is a super-important step because if you just add these intensely flavorful ingredients to the water they won't taste like much of anything.
  3. Now add the carrots and potatoes and stir to season them.
  4. Drain the lentils and add them in.
  5. Pour water into the pan until everything is submerged (you can decide if you want the soup to be more watery or more stew-like).
  6. Bring to a boil then turn heat down to low and let simmer, covered, until the carrots and potatoes have softened, about 40 minutes or so depending on how thickly you've chopped them.
  7. Add more water if necessary, then add the nutritional yeast and beet greens.
  8. Cook until the greens have wilted.
  9. Serve with additional salt and pepper (I usually keep the amount of salt and pepper I put into my soups low so that I can add it to taste at the end...best not to go overboard with either).
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Hopefully now you have a better idea of how to make vegan soup from scratch.  It may seem daunting at first, but remember that you’ll just get better and better with each soup you make!


Vegetarian Sweet Potato and Black Bean Burritos

Hi everyone!  Summer has been crazy so far because I have THREE jobs!  I’m crazy, I know.  But I made a delicious dinner tonight and I wanted to share it with you.

I’ve been making different versions of this recipe for a very long time!  I love sweet potatoes and lots of spices, so why not combine them into a delicious burrito??  It’s hot but not too hot, so know that if you want more heat you should add some more cayenne pepper, jalapeños, or whatever else you like to add for some FIRE!

Just a heads up…this recipe can photograph very nicely, like this:



OR not so nicely if you’re in a rush because you’re STARVING like I was tonight.  So please bear with me in my limited pictures of this dish.  But here it goes anyway…

Vegetarian Sweet Potato and Black Bean Burritos

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 50 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour

Yield: Serves 3-4


    For the filling:
  • Sweet Potatoes (I used 2 medium-large sized ones)
  • Red Bliss Potatoes (3-4 medium sized ones, because they are small to start with)
  • 1 Yellow Onion
  • 2 Bell Peppers (you choose the colors!)
  • Handful (or more) of Kale
  • Can of Black Beans
  • Celery (if you want it for the crunch and flavor)
  • Coconut oil (you can use one that's processed so it doesn't have a coconut flavor or use one that does, it's up to how you want the flavor to impact the recipe)
  • Tortilla or Gluten-Free Wraps of Your Choice
  • For the Seasoning:
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Dice the sweet potatoes, red bliss potatoes, and onion.
  3. Spread them evenly on a baking pan coated in coconut oil (just enough to make sure nothing sticks to the pan) and sprinkle the seasonings on top.
  4. Bake until the potatoes are soft, stirring every 10 minutes or so to equally distribute the seasoning.
  5. Depending on your oven and how thickly you've diced the potatoes I'm guessing this will take 30-45 minutes, but keep an eye on them! Sweet potatoes can quickly take on a "mashed" texture, which is fine if you want it but disappointing if you don't.
  6. While the potatoes and onions are in the oven dice the peppers and chop up the kale and celery, if you're adding it.
  7. Rinse your black beans!  Sometimes they are pre-seasoned (with lots of salt!), so I just make it a habit to rinse them with some cold water.
  8. If you're making a side of rice to pair with your delicious burritos, start it now.
  9. Once the potatoes have about 10-15 minutes left, prep a sauté pan with coconut oil.
  10. Cook the beans, peppers, celery, and kale to your desired tenderness.  I like my peppers still a little crunchy, but it's all about preference!
  11. When the potatoes and onions are done add them to the sauté pan with the rest of the vegetables and mix everything really well.
  12. Heat up your tortillas and enjoy!
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Yummy toppings include sour cream (or yogurt if you use it as a sour cream substitute), avocado, cheese, and salsa.  This recipe is so simple that there’s definitely room for creativity here!  Enjoy 🙂