Roasted Green Beans with Shallot Sherry Vinaigrette

roasted green beans

Roasted green beans with shallot sherry vinaigrette are a great accompaniment to a simple rotisserie chicken over rice pilaf.
You can also substitute other types on long beans, if you prefer. I like to use the vinaigrette while it is still warm from adding the shallots, but you can dress the beans once the vinaigrette has cooled.

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 15 minutes

  • 2 cups green beans
  • 2 medium shallots, very thinly sliced
  • 2 tbs sherry vinegar
  • 8 tbs olive oil
  • 1 tsp each, salt & pepper
  • 1/2 tsp brown mustard
  • 1/2 tsp crushed rosemary
Cooking instructions
  • For fastest preparation, use “Steam in Bag” beans that are already “topped and tailed”; use fresh if you prefer
  • In a bowl, add 2 tbs olive oil, 1/2 tsp each salt & pepper, rosemary; add beans and shallots, tossing until coated
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees
  • Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and lay out the beans and shallots in a single layer (keep shallots separate from the beans)
  • Place sheet in the oven for 12 minutes (until beans are slightly wrinkled and fork tender; don’t overcook!)
  • In a small bowl, combine remaining olive oil, vinegar and mustard. Whisk until emulsified
  • Remove cookie sheet from the oven; take hot shallots and add to the vinaigrette, carefully stirring the shallots until coated
  • Place beans on a serving platter and drizzle with vinaigrette; serve immediately

Variations: If you prefer a milder shallot flavor, do not roast them–instead, add them to the vinaigrette and let stand for 20 minutes before drizzling over the roasted green beans. Note that the ratio (oil:vinegar) is 3-to-1, so you can opt to make extra vinaigrette and store in the fridge for up to a week. It is also great over wilted spinach!

Roasted Broccoli with Ginger Soy Sauce

roasted broccoli

Roasted broccoli is made more interesting with addition of ginger soy sauce. And, it’s a no fuss way to incorporate vegetables into your meals!

Because you line a cookie sheet with foil, this side dish also means no clean up, which is a big plus in my household.

Broccoli is a highly nutritious vegetable: providing fiber, vitamin C, vitamin K, iron, and potassium. It also boasts more protein than most other vegetables.

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 12 minutes

  • 2 cups broccoli florets
  • 2 tbs soy sauce
  • 2 tbs ginger paste
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 1 tsp each, salt & pepper
  • 1/4 tsp red chili flakes
cooking instructions
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  • Cut florets to about 1″; uniformity is important to ensure even cooking
  • Mix soy sauce, ginger paste and chili flakes in a small bowl; set aside
  • Line a cookie sheet with aluminium foil
  • Toss florets with olive oil, salt and pepper
  • Spread florets onto cookie sheet and place in hot oven for about 12 minutes, until fork tender
  • Remove broccoli from cookie sheet and place on serving platter; drizzle sauce and serve hot

Note: you can substitute roasted green beans for the roasted broccoli, if desired. If you want to buy a whole head of broccoli and use the stem as well as the florets, simply trim off the little side leaves and slice into 1/4″ coins. The stem will add additional texture.

Spicy Maple Sweet Potatoes

Spicy maple sweet potatoes are a quick and easy way to add significant food value to any meal–including a whopping 14,187IU of Vitamin A (vs. a mere 2IU for white potatoes). This recipe is versatile and may be tweaked to taste.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cooking Time: 20-30 minutes

  • 2-3 sweet potatoes (dark orange-fleshed varieties provide the best nutrition)
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1 tsp, each salt & pepper
  • 1 tsp sambal (adjust to taste)
  • 2 tbs butter
  • 2 tbs chopped chives, for garnish
Cooking Instructions:
  • Wash sweet potatoes and pierce multiple times with a fork
  • Place potatoes on a plate and set in your microwave for 8-10 minutes (depending upon the wattage of your unit). Test the potatoes at 8 minutes; if easily pierced with a fork, they are cooked.
  • Once the potatoes are cooked through, scoop out the flesh and place into a large bowl.
  • Mix in the salt, pepper and butter, mashing the potatoes thoroughly with a hand mixer. Slowly add in the maple syrup until potatoes are completely mashed. Add in the sambal a bit at a time, tasting to ensure that you reach the desired level of spice.
  • Serve the mash garnished with chives.

Carrots & Parsnips

carrots and parsnips

This is so simple that I wouldn’t really say it’s a recipe — but it is one of my favorite veggies dishes of all time and reminds me of happy family Thanksgivings — always a nice go-to option when I’ve had a really stressful day. (BTW: lots of Americans don’t seem familiar with parsnips; my Mum was English and she introduced our family to this wonderful root vegetable.)

Prep Time: 20 minutes Cooking Time: 20 minutes


  • Carrots: whole carrots are best, but you can use baby carrots (pre-peeled) to cut prep time
  • Peeled, coined parsnips
  • Salt/pepper, to taste

Cooking Instructions:

  • Heat a large pot with salted water
  • Prep vegetables
  • Once the water is at a rolling boil, add veggies to the pot
  • Cook until vegetables are fork tender
  • Drain vegetables
  • Whip until you achieve a smooth, but not totally pureed, texture
  • Test for seasoning; add salt and pepper, as desired
  • Note that any leftovers can be used to make the equivalent of potato pancakes — mix the leftover veg with an egg, Panko breadcrumbs and dredge with flour. Make patties about 1/2″ thick; preheat olive oil to 350 (you need about 1/2″ of oil in the pan) and cook about 5 minutes on each side. The patties should be crispy and brown; keep an eye on them — you want to ensure that they don’t burn!

Glazed Carrots

glazed carrots add depth of flavor to a favorite vegetable

Quick and easy if you use bagged baby carrots! This is another recipe where the taste profile is easily adjusted–experiment and enjoy!

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cooking Time: 7-10 minutes

  • 1lb bag of baby carrots
  • 2 tbs light brown sugar
  • 1 tsp Allspice
  • 1-2 tsp salt; pepper in near equal proportions, to taste
  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 cup water

Cooking Instructions:

  • Boil water, adding salt
  • Once pot is at a rolling boil, add carrots and cove; cook 5-7 minutes until fork tender
  • Let pot boil without lid until water is reduced to ~ 1/4 cup; remove from heat
  • Add sugar and spices and carefully coat carrots, letting them sit for 2-3 minutes
  • Add vinegar slowly and ensure that the carrots are evenly coated
  • Best served immediately, but any leftovers can be used in soups/stews

Squash Bisque

squash bisque is a rich, tasty soup with loads of beta carotene

Silky mouthfeel, lots of anti-oxidants and even better when topped with crunchy garnishes. This is a great soup to make in a batch on a weekend morning…enjoy the rich and sweet textures all week long! (It’s also a very economical base for weekday lunches that has nutritional punch!)

Prep time: 10 minutes Cooking time: 45 minutes


  • 3-4 cups cooked squash; you can use acorn, butternut, or other firm-bodied squash
  • 4-6 oz creme fraiche, or plain yogurt (creme fraiche adds more richness, but yogurt is lower calorie option)
  • 1-2 tbs maple syrup
  • 2-3 tsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp allspice
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp garlic salt
  • 1 cup chicken stock (can be omitted if desired)
  • 1-2 sauteed shallots
  • 3/4 cup toasted pecans or pepitas (for garnish)

Cooking Instructions:

  • Cut squash in half, place on foil-lined baking sheet
  • Brush squash with syrup and oil; sprinkle salt/pepper over flesh
  • Bake in preheated 350 degree over for ~45 minutes until fork-tender
  • Saute spices and shallot until the vegetable is translucent
  • Once the squash is cooked and cooled (so it is easily handled), scoop out flesh, place in blender and add creme fraiche (reserve some for garnishing bowls), shallots and stock. Blend until smooth in texture; if you prefer a more textured soup, try pulsing blender to mix, but not puree.
  • Toast pecan pieces in 300 degree over for about 5 minutes (test — you may want a softer, or a crispier texture and the nuts can burn easily, so you’ll need to stay close to your oven!)
  • Add bisque to bowls and garnish with a swirl of creme fraiche and the toasted pecans, or pepitas