Oat & Lentil Loaf (Vegan & Gluten Free)

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I know Meat Loaf has a bad rap as being boring, but its always been a comfort food for me! So this has been my attempt at finding  a healthy alternative.

So far this is the best vegetable oat loaf I’ve made, its moist and full of flavor, now lets see if my better half notices there’s no meat!!

Remember to soak your lentils as it helps to reduce the cooking time and apparently makes them easier to digest.

Use Chia Seeds as a binder instead of Eggs, unless you insist on eggs then I digress.

I turned my slices of loaf into filler for Collard green wraps- soooooo goood! 🙂

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Ingredients:

Egg Re-placer:

2 Tbsp Chia Seeds- Whole or grind them
1/4 Cup Water

Loaf
1 Cup of Dried Lentils- Soak in water until they swell up to 2 cups (about 4 hours)
2 Cups  Vegtable Broth
3 Garlic Cloves, Minced
1 Onion, Finely Diced
1/2 Jalapeno Pepper, Diced
1 Red Bell Pepper,  Diced
2 Carrots, Shredded (1 cup)
1 Cups Kale or Collard Greens, Roughly Chopped
2 Stalksof Celery, Diced
1.5 Cups Oats (GF)
1/2 Tbsp Coconut Oil
1/2 Teaspoon Cumin Powder
1/2 Teaspoon Curry Powder

Glaze
3 Tbsp’s  Ketchup (organic)
1 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar or Balsamic Vinegar
1 Tbsp Maple Syrup (pure)

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Directions

Step 1. Soak your lentils for at least 4 hours or until doubled in size.

Step 2. Once soaked cook your lentils in 2 cups broth for about 15-20 minutes on medium heat in a stock pot. Once all the broth has evaporated remove from the element and cool for ten minutes so that it thickens.

Step 3. Blend half of your lentil mixture with half a cup of water until smooth.

Step 4.  While your lentils are cooking, add the ground chia to a small bowl, and pour water over- stir well and set aside for 10 minutes to form gel.

Step 5- Dice & Grate all of the veggies above & saute with a teaspoon of Coconut Oil. I usually start with the celery and onion and after a minute or two add the remaining vegetables and hot pepper. Cook on medium heat until soft. Set aside.

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Step 6. Using your blender or Vitamix churn half of your oats into course oat flower.

Step 7. In a large mixing bowl add all of the ingredients except the pureed lentils and chia gel. Mix until everything is thoroughly coated, then add the pureed lentils and gel until its fully incorporated. If its to dry feel free to add a little water.

Step 8. Scoop the mixture into a parchment lined 9 x 5 loaf pan. Press in firmly to help it stick together. I used a glass pie plate, because I think its prettier!

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Step 9. Whisk your ketchup, balsamic vinegar, and maple syrup together in a small bowl and pour over top of the loaf and spread evenly over the top. Pop it in the oven at 350 for about 40 minutes. Cool & Serve.
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Trust me the leftovers are even better! You can always make this the day before and warm up for lunch or diner! Enjoy! And play around with different spices that you may prefer!

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Wild Rice & Acorn Squash Casserole- Vegetarian & Gluten Free

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For my vegetarian days, this casserole is a life saver. It is the perfect multi-functional staple that packs a hearty punch to keep you full.

You can use it as a main dish, side, soup base, or salad. This time I put about a cup on top of two cups of arugula and had it as a salad, there is so much flavor you do not need to add a dressing.

Another great way to use the casserole is as filling for enchiladas instead of using meat, or it makes a wonderful filling for wraps using Collard Green Leaves. Experiment!

Make sure you soak your lentils for at least 4 hours, or even better over night.

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Ingredients:

1 Small Acorn Squash
1.5 Cups Wild Rice
1 Cup Soaked Lentils
4 Cups Vegetable Broth
1 Small Onion
1 Stalk of Celery
2 Cloves of Garlic
1 Sweet Red Pepper
3 Kale Leaves
1 Tablespoon Oil
1 Tsp Diced  Fresh Thyme
(1/2 Cup) Grated Cheese
Salt & Pepper

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Directions:

Step 1– Cut your acorn squash in half and place in a shallow pan with about half a cup of water, and roast at 350 f, for about 25 minutes until soft. Remove from oven and let cool.

Step 2. Pour your rice, soaked lentils  and broth into a stock pot and cook at medium heat until soft and the water has evaporated about 30-40 min. (You can use a rice cooker if you would like)

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Step 3. In a skillet on medium heat, add your oil along with all of your bite sized vegetables ( Onion, Garlic, Celery, Red Pepper and Kale) and saute until soft.

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Step 4. Dice your roasted acorn squash into bite size pieces and mix with your rice and lentil mixture until it starts to break down a bit, then place in  your sauteed veggies and spread out into a casserole dish.

Step 5. Add your cheese on top and broil until browned. Remove & Serve.

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