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Vicki Brett-Gach is an author and a graduate of the CNS and eCornell Plant-Based Nutrition Certificate. Vicki is also a Certified Vegan Lifestyle Coach and Educator, a Certified Personal Chef, Forks Over Knives Plant-Based Certified and Starch Solution Certified. Connect with Ann Arbor Vegan Kitchen on Facebook or visit her website at Ann Arbor Vegan Kitchen.

Perfect Lentil Soup With Mashed Potatoes
Perfect Lentil Soup With Mashed Potatoes

This soup is rich and flavorful and hits the spot on a chilly night. It’s heavenly served with little scoops of leftover or freshly-made mashed potatoes in the bowls. This recipe is flexible and forgiving. Try adding chickpeas or steamed cooked greens for variety. Whether prepared all day in the slow cooker, or on the stove on a weekend afternoon, Perfect Lentil Soup with Mashed Potatoes takes comfort food to a whole new level.


Curried Red Lentil Soup
Curried Red Lentil Soup

This wonderful soup in all its comforting glory is one of my all-time favorites. So very good on a cold night with a warm loaf of crusty bread, this soup works its magic in just about an hour, and it’s really good enough for company. Make it a day or two ahead of time if you like; it just seems to get better with time. Plus, it freezes well too.


Spicy Three Bean Veggie Chili
Spicy Three Bean Veggie Chili

This chili can simmer unattended all day in a slow cooker, or works well bubbling on the stove for about 90 minutes in the late afternoon. It’s spicy, layered with deep, satisfying flavor and just enough heat. It’s probably even better the next day, but fantastic on day one for sure. It’s great with warmed whole-grain tortillas, or piled high over steaming baked potatoes. Garnish with plenty of fresh cilantro, or use your imagination with your favorite toppings.


Best Split Pea Soup
Best Split Pea Soup

This recipe has a long history, and goes back several decades. My mom made a wonderful split pea soup when I was growing up, and over the years, I tweaked her recipe, removing all animal products and added oils. Now it’s simple as can be, and incredibly delicious. I usually make this in a slow cooker, which requires no babysitting at all. But you can simmer it on the stove. We typically turn this soup into a hearty Sunday dinner, adding whole grain pasta, cooked greens, or diced potatoes to our bowls. This makes a big pot of stick-to-the-ribs soup, and you’ll find there’s plenty for a few extra bowls during the week.


Spicy Cashews and Pecans
Spicy Cashews and Pecans

My favorite combination is half pecans, half cashews. You might try almonds or walnuts, too. Just remember to use raw nuts, rather than roasted, to prevent over-toasting.


Homemade Granola
Homemade Granola

This recipe makes just about one quart, but I sometimes prepare a double batch just to share with friends, poured into little Mason jars and tied with ribbons.


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