Date Night Vegan Penne with Tempeh Chorizo and Red Pepper Cream Sauce

It’s still early spring, which means it’s perfectly acceptable to share this cozy pasta recipe, right?

Pasta is the ultimate date night meal. And if you gussy it up with tempeh chorizo and a creamy cashew red pepper sauce, you’ll most definitely succeed in impressing your person. As my dad always says, “The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach!” Actually, the way to anyone’s heart is through their stomach. So even if you’re not making this for your special someone, you can still make this for your siblings, parents, that neighbour you just met, or even yourself (spoiling yourself with a pasta dinner like this is the best form of self-love!).

Almost every savoury recipe that you see on this blog has a balanced macronutrient ratio, and this one is a perfect example: tempeh chorizo provides protein, whole grain pasta provides carbohydrates, and the cashew red pepper sauce provides an ample amount of healthy fats. The sauteed kale adds micronutrients like calcium, vitamin K1, manganese, and cancer-fighting compounds. Cashews are also rich in micronutrients, including copper. Copper helps the body utilize iron, eliminates free radicals, and plays a role in the development of bone and connective tissue and in the production of melanin.

It actually makes the perfect meal to enjoy the night before a long run or hard workout. And aside from being healthy, this pasta tastes divine.

It comes together in just a few simple steps. First, you’ll make the tempeh chorizo, which is a recipe I developed in the very early days of blogging. However, instead of making 6 large patties, you’ll make 18 smaller ones.

Then, you’ll make the creamy roasted red pepper sauce. It’s a combination of soaked and drained raw cashews, roasted red pepper, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, garlic, vegetable broth, salt, and pepper.

The final step is cooking the pasta and sauteeing onions, garlic, celery, and kale, and tossing it all together.

All that remains to be done is serve the pasta and pour yourselves a glass another glass of wine.

We enjoyed this pasta with a simple salad of radicchio, escarole, and a creamy avocado dressing that I’ll be sharing soon. The bitterness of the greens provided a really wonderful contrast to the richness of the dish.

Tempeh Chorizo
Tempeh Chorizo
Roasted Red Pepper Cream Sauce
Tempeh Chorizo
Date Night Penne with Tempeh Chorizo and Red Pepper Cream Sauce
Date Night Penne with Tempeh Chorizo and Roasted Red Pepper Cream Sauce

Date Night Penne with Tempeh Chorizo and Red Pepper Cream Sauce

Penne, tempeh chorizo, and a creamy cashew red pepper cream sauce combine to create the perfect date night meal. 
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time50 mins
Course: Dinner, Entree, Main
Cuisine: Italian, Vegan
Servings: 4


Cashew Red Pepper Cream Sauce

  • 1 cup raw cashews, soaked in cold water for at least 4 hours or hot water for 1 hour, drained
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1 cup chopped roasted red pepper
  • 3/4 cup vegetable broth
  • 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice


  • 1 batch Tempeh Chorizo, made into 18 small patties (see note for recipe)
  • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium red or yellow onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 celery stalks, finely chopped
  • 1 medium bunch kale, chopped
  • Red pepper flakes
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
  • 4 cups dry penne, rotini, fusili, or rigatoni pasta


  • If you have not yet made the tempeh chorizo, do so before beginning anything else. 
  • Make the cashew cream sauce: Blend together the soaked and drained cashews, tomato paste, roasted red pepper, vegetable broth, salt, pepper, garlic, lemon juice, and nutritional yeast in a blender until very smooth and creamy. Transfer to a jar until ready to use. 
  • Heat the olive oil in a large heavy-bottomed skillet over medium. Add the onions, garlic, and a pinch of salt. Saute for 5 minutes, until lightly browned. Add the celery and cook 3 minutes more. Then add the kale, followed by the red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Cook until the kale is just bright green. Remove from heat. 
  • Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook the pasta according to the package directions, drain, and return to the pot. Add the sauteed greens and tempeh chorizo to the pot, followed by the cashew cream sauce. Toss to coat. Divide between bowls and enjoy with a glass of fine wine and a green salad. 


My Tempeh Chorizo recipe can be found here.
Red pepper cream sauce inspired by The Full Helping
Date night pasta idea inspired by Pinch of Yum

Did you make this recipe? Tag @holisticallie on Instagram and hashtag it #holisticallie.

Let’s get social! Connect with me on InstagramFacebook, and Twitter

Roasted Cauliflower Cilantro Soup

This Middle Eastern-inspired soup packs a flavourful punch thanks to a roasted cauliflower base plus cilantro, tahini, and lemon.

After a period of indulgence, I naturally gravitate towards meals with an abundance of greens. I often start to crave these meals at the seasonal transition from winter to spring, too. It stands to reason: after months of warm, grounding, nourishing meals, I think all of our bodies are in want of lighter, greener foods.

I don’t believe in cleanses per se, but I do believe in eating foods that naturally support our bodies’ natural detoxification processes on a daily basis. Because we are exposed to so many toxins and pollutants in our daily lives, it is incredibly important to make sure that we are regularly consuming an abundance of organically grown cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cabbage, kale, cauliflower) and fresh herbs (cilantro is particularly good at cleansing the body of heavy metals).

This soup fits the bill when the days are still just cool enough to justify a warm meal, but not cold enough to warrant, say, a chili. It’s a vibrant green colour (hey cilantro!); ultra creamy thanks to roasted cauliflower; and it gets a hit of complexity from tahini. Lemon juice adds brightness, and I’ve intentionally kept the spices simple here to really allow the simple trifecta of tahini, lemon, and cilantro to shine. Chickpeas roasted with extra virgin olive oil and za’atar (a middle eastern spice blend made with sumac, oregano, thyme, and sesame) add not only texture, but a boost of protein, too.

While it’s pretty nutritionally balanced as far as soups go, a bowl of soup never constitutes a meal for me- I always need some good sourdough bread, homemade flatbread, and/or salad to round out the meal. (But then again, I’m a volume eater, lol.) I served this soup with braised purple cabbage and bread, and we found it to be the perfect combination!

Oh, and a note to all the cilantro haters out there: if you must, feel free to substitute an equal amount of fresh parsley for the cilantro.

Roasted Cauliflower Cilantro Soup

A creamy roasted cauliflower soup with a boost of green from a whole bunch of cilantro. 
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time40 mins
Total Time50 mins
Course: Dinner, Main Dish, Soup
Cuisine: Middle Eastern, Vegan
Servings: 4 generous bowls


  • 1 large head cauliflower, chopped into florets
  • 2.5 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 heaping cup chopped yellow onion
  • 5 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 stalks celery, chopped
  • Generous pinch fine sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne
  • 5 cups vegetable broth
  • 1/3 cup tahini
  • 1 large bunch cilantro
  • 3 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice

Za’atar-Roasted Chickpeas

  • 1.5 cups cooked chickpeas (or 1 14-oz can, rinsed and drained)
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
  • 2 tsp za’atar*


  • Preheat oven to 400 F and line two large baking sheets with parchment paper. Place the cauliflower on one baking sheet and drizzle with 1.5 tbsp of the olive oil, salt, and pepper. Toss to coat.  Roast for 30-40 minutes, or until browned and crispy around the edges. 
  • Place the chickpeas on the second baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with the salt and za’atar. Roast until browned and crispy, about 25-30 minutes, keeping in mind that they will crisp up more once out of the oven. 
  • Meanwhile, heat the remaining 1 tbsp of olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onions and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, for five minutes. Add the celery, a pinch of salt and pepper, and spices, and cook a few minutes more. Add the broth and bring the soup to a low simmer. 
  • Once the cauliflower is ready, add it to the pot and remove from heat. Stir in the tahini. 
  • Blend the soup in two batches. Add half of the soup to the jar of the blender and place half of the cilantro on top (we are adding the cilantro now instead of earlier to allow it to retain its beautiful green colour!). Blend until smooth, pour it into a a large container or bowl, and repeat with the second half of the soup. Return the soup to the original pot and warm it up more, if desired. Right before serving, add the lemon juice.  
  • Ladle into bowls and garnish with roasted chickpeas. 


*If you cannot find za’atar, you can make your own.

Did you make this recipe! Share a photo on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram and tag me #holisticallie and @holisticallie.

Vegan Meatball Pizza with Green Goddess Ranch Dip

All your vegan pizza dreams came true with this meatball pizza. Tempeh meatballs, tofu ricotta (or vegan cheese of your choice), and veggies bake up into pizza perfection atop a homemade spelt pizza crust. Take it over the top by serving it with my Green Goddess Ranch Dip.

Recently, a number of high profile (high profile on social media channels, at least) vegans have come out and confessed that they have had to go back to eating animal products because years of veganism had made them sick. Bonny Rebecca, Rawvana, and most recently, Raw Alignment have all published videos outlining why they are no longer vegan. Now, I’m not a health professional, but what I have observed in many of the popular vegan YouTubers is an incredibly restrictive diet lacking in protein, fat (particularly omega-3 essential fatty acids), and numerous important micronutrients like iron and vitamin B12. It bothers me that people with such influence have been so irresponsible for so long, and profited handsomely off of spreading misinformation to millions of followers. By the looks of what they were eating (or not eating, in the example of Rawvana, who went on a 25-day water fast at one point), their behaviours were those of people with restrictive eating disorders, and can’t be blamed on the vegan diet. They were not eating a balanced vegan diet, and years of engaging in these restrictive habits will eventually catch up to anyone, vegan or not. (I don’t know how many of you know about Mic the Vegan, but he has skillfully dissected many ex-vegans’ claims using scientific evidence. I’d encourage you to check him out if you’re curious about digging deeper into the facts.)

I try to have compassion for everyone, and I would never judge a person because they weren’t vegan. That isn’t my point at all. My point is that a balanced vegan diet that incorporates plenty of healthy fat, protein, carbohydrates, and micronutrients should be maintainable for life. Some people choose to go back to eating animal products for various reasons, but if you’re doing veganism properly, health shouldn’t be one of them.

My food philosophy echoes Michael Pollan’s well-known adage: “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” I think food has become really over-complicated in the digital age, with the next fad right around the corner, and it’s been made worse by influencers on social media such as the ones I just discussed who have only cursory knowledge of nutrition but proclaim themselves as experts.

This meatball pizza recipe is a celebration of enjoying a balanced vegan diet. It isn’t raw. There’s both tofu and tempeh on it (I know, soy, gasp!). It isn’t green (although the Green Goddess Ranch sauce just happens to be green, heh heh). You’ll probably go back for seconds and thirds. You’ll enjoy this with some beer. And that’s okay! That’s healthy. Enjoying an abundance of foods–both “clean” and not– is what will allow you to sustain veganism for years to come, if you decide that it works for you and aligns with your health, ethical, and environmental values.

Vegan Meatball Pizza with Green Goddess Ranch Dip

A vegan meatball pizza made with tempeh meatballs, tofu ricotta, and vegetables on a thin crust. A Green Goddess Ranch Dip makes the perfect compliment.  
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American, Italian
Servings: 2 10-inch pizzas, 6-8 slices each


  • 1 batch Easy as Pie Spelt Pizza Dough* (see instructions for recipe link)
  • 1 batch Tempeh Meatballs, made into 24 small meatballs* (see instructions for recipe link)
  • 1/2 batch Tofu Ricotta (recipe follows)
  • 1-1 1/2 cups pizza sauce
  • 1 small red onion
  • 10 medium cremini mushrooms

Tofu Ricotta

  • 1 454 g package firm or extra-firm tofu (organic and non-GMO, please)
  • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (from 2 large lemons)
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried basil 1
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 tbsp mellow white or chickpea miso
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1/2-1 tsp fine sea salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Green Goddess Ranch Dip

  • 1/2 a medium ripe avocado, pitted, flesh scooped out
  • 1/2 cup hemp hearts
  • 1 celery stalk, chopped
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 3 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup filtered water
  • 1 large clove garlic
  • 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley, stems removed, chopped


  • Prepare the Easy as Pie Spelt Pizza Dough according to the instructions. 
  • Prepare the Tempeh Meatballs according to the instructions, but form into 24 small balls as opposed to the 12 larger balls indicated in the original recipe. 
  • While the dough is rising and the meatballs are baking, make the tofu ricotta. Combine all ingredients together in a food process and blend until very smooth and creamy. Add more salt, lemon juice, or nutritional yeast to taste. 
  • Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F if you will be using a pizza stone, or 450 degrees F if you will be using a metal sheet. If you will be using a pizza stone or other stoneware, put it into the oven to preheat now. 
  • Peel and thinly slice the red onion. Wipe the mushrooms clean with a damp cloth and thinly slice those, too. If you do not like mushrooms, you may substitute a thinly sliced red bell pepper. 
  • Once the dough is ready and you have divided it in two and rolled out a round of dough, transfer it to a sheet of parchment paper that fits your pan. Lightly brush the edges of the pizza dough with some extra-virgin olive oil- this helps the crust brown and crisp up as it bakes. Spread 1/2 to 3/4 cup of pizza sauce on it, followed by 12 of the meatballs and half of the onions and mushrooms. Dollop on half of the tofu ricotta (you can also use your desired amount of your favourite vegan cheese, such as cashew cheese, if you do not feel like the tofu ricotta). If you have leftover nut Parmesan from making the tempeh meatballs, you may sprinkle that on top. 
  • Repeat this step with the second round of pizza dough. If you have two pizza stones or pans, you can bake the pizzas at the same time. Transfer each unbaked pizza to a pre-heated stone and bake for 8-10 minutes, or until the edges of the crust are nicely browned and the tofu ricotta has turned golden and appears to have crisped up. 
  • While the pizza is baking, make the Green Goddess Ranch dip. Combine all ingredients in a high speed blender and blend until smooth. 
  • Remove the pizza from the oven and allow it to rest for 5 minutes before slicing and serving with a generous amount of Green Goddess Ranch Dip (that stuff is addictive!). And beer. Don’t forget the craft beer. 


I own two Pampered Chef stoneware cookie sheets, which I bake pizza on. I highly recommend investing in some- they are made with non-toxic American clay; don’t contain any nasty Teflon or other non-stick chemicals; and are truly timeless. 
Prep and cook times do not take into consideration time to make meatballs and pizza dough. 

Thank you for sticking with me through this rather long post! It was something I felt I needed to get off of my chest. I’d love to hear your thoughts on veganism/ex-veganism and/or this pizza!

If you make this recipe, don’t forget to tag a photo with #holisticallie and @holisticallie on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram!

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookie Shake

Good morning! Popping in with a drink recipe and a few reads again. Hopefully you’ve fared all right during this emotional week of two heartbreaking tragedies, and that you were uplifted by the climate action protests around the world on Friday. As senseless and heartbreaking as these tragedies are, they make me extra grateful for this life, and remind me of its fragility. And the climate action protests are yet another reminder that we all can, and must, treat Mother Earth with more care and respect. Be kind to the earth, be kind to yourself, and spread love to all beings–human and non-human alike.

With that, I leave you with a smoothie recipe that is kind to your body and the earth. It doesn’t hurt that it tastes just like a peanut butter cookie in smoothie form, too! Of course, you can use whichever nut or seed butter you like.

Here are some reads that caught my eye this week:

  1. How to wake up with more joy.
  2. We are unstoppable. Another world is possible.” The youth are rising in 112 countries and counting.
  3. Tiny Costa Rica has a Green New Deal, too. And it matters for the whole planet. The country wants to wean itself from fossil fuels by 2050.
  4. Have you heard of Loop? Now, similar startups are popping up, aiming to all but remove plastic from the consumption equation by offering products in refillable containers. But unlike zero waste stores, the refilling is done by the company itself. I’m really hoping this goes mainstream.
  5. I love my car-free lifestyle and am a pretty outspoken car-free advocate. George Monbiot expresses it so succinctly : “Let’s abandon this disastrous experiment, recognise that this 19th-century technology is now doing more harm than good, and plan our way out of it. Let’s set a target to cut the use of cars by 90% over the next decade.”

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookie Shake

A delicious smoothie that tastes just like a peanut butter oatmeal cookie! It packs a serious punch of fibre, potassium, and healthy fat. 
Prep Time5 mins
Total Time5 mins
Course: Breakfast, Snack
Cuisine: Vegan
Servings: 1 500 mL/16 oz smoothie
Author: Allison


  • 1 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk
  • 1/3 cup rolled oats
  • 1 large frozen banana, chopped
  • 1 pitted Medjool date, soaked for 10 minutes if hard
  • 2 tbsp natural peanut butter
  • 1/8 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp ground flaxseed
  • 1 pinch fine sea salt
  • 1 ice cube


  • Place ingredients in a blender and blend until very smooth. Pour into a glass and enjoy. 


If you do not have a high-speed blender, I recommend soaking the oats and almond milk together for 10 minutes before proceeding with the recipe. 

If you make this recipe, tag your photo #holisticallie and @holisticallie on Instagram!

Curried Carrot, Lentil, and Coconut Soup

A healthy, simple dish, my Curried Carrot, Lentil, and Coconut Soup will chase away those late winter blahs and flood your body with health-giving nutrients!

I thought I’d pop in with one soup recipe before winter slips away for another year! It’s hard to believe I haven’t shared any soup recipes on the blog yet. Hopefully I’ll be able to remedy that as time goes on!


On the topic of winter, do you love it or would you be a snowbird if you could? I’d say that I fall somewhere in the middle. On the one hand, I enjoy peaceful walks right after a snowfall, when it feels as if the world has ground to halt. I appreciate how the weather forces me to slow down and do less. On the other hand, I could do without five layers of clothing (a bit of an exaggeration, but I do feel like a Michelin tire woman in my jacket) and heavy boots every time I go outside. And winter running in this Ontario climate has been interesting, to say the least. At this point in the season, I’m really just ready to see something other than white (or grey, or brown, as you do in a city winter). Bring on the green foliage!

The one thing that I do love about winter, though, is the warm, cozy food that comes along with it. I’m all about soups, stews, and warm drinks during this season, and I have found that eating plenty of cooked food and warming spices has been a game-changer for my wintertime immunity.

Ayurveda, an ancient eastern healing modality, would certainly support this: according to Ayurveda, our environment affects our inner health, so when it is cold outside, we should consume food that stokes our inner fire: lots of cooked food and hot spices (curry, cayenne, ginger, garlic). In short: Like increases like, so we treat with the opposite. Cold outside, warm inside. It’s simple, and it works. Of course, there is more to Ayurveda than that, but for the purposes of this blog post, that is all the detail I will go into today.

It does make good intuitive sense to eat warm food when it is cold outside, doesn’t it? This soup is the perfect warming dish for these last days of winter. It simultaneously soothes and satisfies, all while flooding your body with immunity-boosting spices and vegetables. Red lentils add heft and protein to this velvety soup, along with a healthy dose of folate, magnesium, and iron, to name just a few of the minerals found in these mighty nutritional all-stars!

I love serving this soup with homemade chapathis, and Indian flatbread made with spelt flour, water, and salt. You can also serve it with a fresh green salad, a sandwich, or simply with some nice sourdough bread and butter.

Curried Carrot, Lentil, and Coconut Soup

A healthy, perfectly spiced carrot soup that gets an extra boost of nutrition from red lentils. 
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Appetizer, Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine: Indian, Thai, Vegan
Servings: 4 bowls
Author: Allison


  • 2 tbsp virgin coconut oil
  • 2 cups chopped yellow onion (about 2 medium)
  • 4 large cloves garlic
  • 3 tbsp peeled and grated fresh ginger
  • 3 stalks celery
  • Pinch of fine sea salt
  • 1 tbsp red curry paste
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 3 cups chopped carrots
  • 1 cup red lentils
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 tbsp coconut sugar
  • 400 mL full-fat coconut milk (1 can)
  • 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
  • Cilantro, for garnish


  • In a large soup pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onions, garlic, and ginger. Cook, stirring often, for 5 minutes. 
  • Add celery, salt, curry paste, turmeric, and carrots. Cook five minutes more. 
  • Rinse the lentils in a fine mesh sieve. Drain and add to the pot. Add the vegetable broth and coconut sugar and bring to a boil. Turn heat down to medium-low, cover, and simmer, stirring occasionally to prevent lentils sticking, for 20 minutes, or until lentils have cooked and carrots are fork-tender. 
  • Stir in the coconut milk and transfer to an upright blender. Blend in two or three batches and transfer back into the pot. Bring it back to a simmer, then stir in the lime juice and serve. Garnish with cilantro if desired. 

I hope you love this soup! If you make it, tag your photo #holisticallie and @holisticallie on Instagram!

Vegan Banana Spice Cake with Cashew Buttercream

I’ve been feeling restless lately. Anyone else? I’m ready to shake things up, yet I can’t decide where to go or what to do. It’s not to say that I’m unhappy with my current situation. However, I feel as though I’m caught in my comfort zone, where I’m not actively chasing a goal that scares me. Sad though it may sound, I have allowed myself to become content with mediocrity this winter. As someone with perfectionist tendencies, it does feel strange to be utterly content doing less–and I suppose, in a way, it’s been freeing. And yet, I haven’t done anything that scares me since I completed my first marathon in the fall. I don’t think there is necessarily anything wrong with not having a big, scary goal at all times– in fact, I’d wager that it’s healthy not to be constantly in pursuit of bigger and better– but I think it’s time for me to set a new big, scary goal. More on that as I figure it out. 😉

But THIS Vegan Banana Spice Cake. (Was that transition awkward enough for you? Writing is hard sometimes.) While it might not hold all the answers, I’m almost certain that it will make your day a little brighter. Behold the veganized and spiced up version of my favourite birthday cake. It’s moist, lightly spiced, sweet, and the equal parts dense and fluffy. The cashew buttercream really takes it over the top–imagine a veganized cream cheese icing using only whole foods and natural sweeteners! It blends up into creamy bliss in a high speed blender, and after about an hour in the freezer, it’s ready to be whipped and put onto the cake. I iced this cake generously, as you can see from the photos, because that is how I roll. Go big or go home, baby!

Banana Spice Cake

A moist, dense cake that’s perfect for both snacking and special occasions. 
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: Vegan
Keyword: Banana cake, Vegan cake
Servings: 9 slices
Author: Allison


  • 1 flax egg (1 tbsp flax plus 2.5 tbsp water)
  • 1/4 cup virgin coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup raw cane sugar or coconut sugar
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 3/4 cup mashed ripe banana (about 2 medium)
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups light/white spelt flour (or 3/4 cup all-purpose flour + 3/4 cup whole spelt flour)
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom
  • 1/4 tsp ginger
  • 1/8 tsp cloves
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1 batch Cashew Buttercream (recipe follows)


  • Preheat oven to 350 F and lightly grease a 8×8-inch square baking dish with coconut oil. 
  • In a small bowl, prepare the flax egg and set it aside to ‘gel.’
  • In a large bowl, cream together coconut oil and sugar. Mix in maple syrup, flax egg, and vanilla. 
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together dry ingredients. 
  • Pour the dry ingredients over the wet ingredients and stir just until flour is incorporated. Fold in the rolled oats. 
  • Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 30-35 minutes. 
  • Allow to cool completely before frosting. 

Cashew Buttercream

A vegan cream cheese-style frosting made in your blender. 
Prep Time5 mins
Freezing time1 hr
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Vegan
Keyword: Cashew Buttercream, Vegan Frosting
Servings: 1 1/2 cups, enough for one 8×8-inch cake


  • 1 cup cashews, soaked in cool water for 8 hours or hot water for 1 hour, drained and rinsed
  • 2 tbsp virgin coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 118 mL coconut cream (1 small can)
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • Pinch sea salt


  • Place all ingredients into a high-speed blender, such as a Vitamix or Blendtec, scraping down sides as needed, and blend until very smooth and creamy. This may take a few minutes. 
  • Place icing in a glass container, cover, and place in the freezer for at least 1 hour, until beginning to firm up. 
  • Empty the icing into a mixing bowl. Beat until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to use. This icing does not remain firm at room temperature, so it’s best to frost cake right before serving. 

If you make this cake, take a photo and post it on Instagram with #holisticallie and @holisticallie!

Peanut Butter Cup Muffins


Hi, friends! I feel as though it’s been a minute since I’ve posted here. When I started this blog, I thought that I would have time to post every. single. day. I have since been humbled by the amount of time and energy that goes into creating, testing, and photographing recipes while also working a full time job and marathon training! I’m not complaining or making excuses, just saying that I have a newfound appreciation for all those who juggle many life things at once!

Continue reading “Peanut Butter Cup Muffins”

Mediterranean Sun-Dried Tomato Chickpea Burgers with Cashew Tzatziki (Vegan)

Get ready for your taste buds to EXPLODE! These Mediterranean-inspired veggie burgers are bursting with flavour from umami-rich sun-dried tomatoes and fresh herbs, and are packed with complete protein from chickpeas, quinoa, tahini, and sunflower seeds. The cashew tzatziki sauce takes them over the top into OMG territory. They are delicious on artisan burger buns, ciabatta buns, or even lettuce leaves! 


Whenever I set out to create a veggie burger recipe, I have a strict set of criteria that said burgers must meet:

  1. They must be packed with protein.
  2. They must be ultra-flavourful.
  3. They must satisfy both vegans and omnivores.

Continue reading “Mediterranean Sun-Dried Tomato Chickpea Burgers with Cashew Tzatziki (Vegan)”

Tempeh Chorizo

This tempeh chorizo is guaranteed to please vegans and omnivores alike! It’s intensely flavourful and can stand in for the “real thing” on pizza, breakfast burritos and sandwiches, quesadillas, salads, and more! Rich in complete protein and without a single processed ingredient, I can’t think of a healthier (or more delicious!) faux meat! 

IMG_9226 (2).jpg

Continue reading “Tempeh Chorizo”

Pan-Fried Maple-Tamari-Sriracha Tofu


This tofu is guaranteed to turn any tofu hater into a lover! Nobody can resist the sweet, salty, and mildly spicy flavour of this dish. It is also incredibly versatile, and works well as a filling in wraps, a topping for bowls, and on its own as a tasty, protein-rich snack!


Servings: 4
Time: 30 minutes marinating + 15 minutes cooking

3 tbsp tamari
2 tbsp pure maple syrup
2 tbsp sriracha (I like Simply Natural brand organic sriracha)
1 block (350 g) extra firm organic tofu, diced into 1-inch cubes
1 tbsp virgin coconut oil


  1. In a large bowl, whisk together tamari, maple syrup, and sriracha.
  2. Add tofu and toss to combine.
  3. Allow tofu to marinate for at least 30 minutes, or up to 8 hours, if possible.
  4. In a large skillet (preferably cast iron), heat coconut oil over medium heat. Once hot, add the tofu.
  5. Cook tofu for about five minutes, then carefully flip and cook for five minutes on the other side.
  6. Continue cooking the tofu until most of the marinade has caramelized and the tofu itself is crispy.
  7. Remove from heat and enjoy in wraps, on bowls, or as part of a plate with roasted sweet potato, greens, and sauce. The sky really is the limit with this tofu.