Happy Plate

Tonight I had a creative block. I could not decide on what to make for dinner. While I could have asked my husband, I already knew what his response would be…”edible bio-matter”.

We even went grocery shopping last night, there is a full fridge of food, and there I was standing with the doors wide open wondering what there was I could make. Don’t get me wrong, normally when those doors open I see endless possibilities. Today was just one of those days. It’s very strange, I seem better at making something out of nothing the day before we do our grocery shopping, opposed the when there’s a fridge full of endless amounts of bright colors. What can I say, I like a challenge.

Eventually this creative block passed. I found myself mindfully grabbing the brightest and most vibrant colors out of the fridge, and mixing all my love into a happy, hearty, healthy meal.

I broke up this recipes into sections to make it a little easier to follow. Each section is a different side. Following the sides in the order in which they are written will help to assure that everything will be done cooking at the perfect time to plate it.

I decided to name this recipe “Happy Plate” because it leaves you feelings happy from the inside-out.

Happy Plate


Side of sweet potato

  • 2 sweet potatoes (peeled and cubed)
  • 1tsp chili powder
  • 1tsp oregano
  • salt

Side of kale

  • Bundle of kale (destemmed, chopped, and rinsed)
  • ½ red cabbage (chopped into small pieces)
  • 1 clove of garlic chopped
  • ¼ yellow onion chopped
  • ¼ cup of Vegetable broth (used in place of oil)
  • ½ a lemon
  • 1 tsp Braggs liquid aminos
  • 1 tsp. lemon pepper seasoning
  • 1 tsp cumin

Side of beans

  • 1 cup of black beans
  • Handful of cherry tomatoes (diced small)
  • ¼ cup vegetable broth
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper


  • 1 package of tempeh
  • BBQ sauce (I used the brand Woodstock, use your favorite vegan BBQ sauce!)


  • Cooked brown rice
  • 1 avocado (diced)
  • Sriracha& salsa for taste


For the sweet potato:

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. In a large bowl mix all the seasonings together and coat the sweet potato. Place sweet potato on a baking sheet that is lined with parchment paper. Cook for 35 minutes occasionally flipping the potatoes.

For the kale:

In a large cooking pan on medium/high, pour about a tbsp. of the vegetable broth into the pan and sauté the onion and garlic for about 2 minutes. Add the remaining vegetable broth, stir in the kale and cabbage. Cook for about 5-8 minutes until the vegetables are soft. Then, add all the remaining ingredients and stir in, lower the heat to low and place a lid on top of pan. Stir occasionally and move on to remaining dishes.

For the beans:

On medium/high, heat the vegetable broth in a small pan. Add the diced tomatoes and place a lid over it and let it simmer for a couple of minutes until tomatoes become soft (While you are doing this you may start on cooking the tempeh). Remove the lid, add the beans, and place lid over to simmer for another minute. Next, turn the heat down to low and stir in the remaining ingredients. You may place the lid over and let sit until ready to serve.

Note: If the pan starts to dry out, add more vegetable broth or water.

For the tempeh:

Cook tempeh on medium/high in a non-stick pan. Cook each side for about 4-6 minutes until crispy but not burnt. After the tempeh is done cooking, place in a bowl and coat in your favorite BBQ sauce, use whatever amount makes you happy!

– Serve tempeh over the cooked brown rice, top with fresh avocado, sriracha, and plate it with all the delicious sides!

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