Best Ever Portobello Breakfast Sandwich


Who doesn’t love leftovers for breakfast after a night of grilling?

If you’re like me, you usually grill a surplus of vegetables so you can devour them over several meals. After all, you put in all that work! Why not cook a few more AND pair them with Hunts Best Ever Ketchup?

Hunt’s tomatoes are California-grown and make for such a delicious and thick ketchup that you’ll never want to be without it on grill night!

Sometimes when we have large get togethers, my friends and I don’t get to cooking all of the fresh vegetables, so it’s up to me to prepare them the next day. One of the best vessels for serving them up is in a breakfast sandwich.

Since I don’t usually feel like firing up the grill again, I do all of the cooking in the kitchen. So, the recipe below is a breakfast sandwich you can make sans grill. Or, you can grill the mushrooms and shishito peppers the night before and put this sandwich together in a jiffy! Whatever strikes your fancy!

Best Ever Portobello Breakfast Sandwich

Extra virgin olive oil
½ cup balsamic vinegar
10 cloves garlic, minced, divided
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 large Portobello mushrooms, cleaned and stemmed
4 slices Gruyere or Swiss cheese
1/2 lb baby arugula
16 small shishito peppers
4 large eggs
4 brioche hamburger buns
Hunt’s Best Ever Ketchup 

Preheat the broiler and add mushrooms to a baking sheet.

In a medium bowl, combine the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and 6 cloves garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Pour the marinade over the mushrooms and set aside.

Transfer the mushrooms to the broiler and broil for 5 minutes on each side. In the last minute of broiling, add cheese slices to the mushrooms and allow the cheese to melt. Keep warm.

In a medium skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add 2 cloves garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in arugula and season with salt and pepper. Sautee until wilted, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a plate.

To the same pan, heat an additional tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add shishito peppers and season with salt and pepper.  Stir occasionally, until partially blackened. Remove from heat.

Break four eggs into small ramekins. Heat 2 tbsp olive oil over medium-high heat in a small cast iron skillet. Pour one egg at a time to the skillet. Using a spoon, baste egg with olive oil from the pan and cook for about 1 minute, until the edges are crisp, and the yolk just begins to thicken. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate and repeat with remaining eggs. Season eggs with salt and pepper.

Toast brioche buns if desired.

Prepare the sandwich: Spread copious amounts of ketchup to both sides of the bun. Top the bottom half of the bun with arugula followed by the Portobello mushroom, shishito peppers, and egg. Finish with remaining bun half and enjoy!



Tofu Banh Mi with Sunflower Seed Pate and Squash Pickles

Banh Mi Up, Scotty! 

Check out the recipe below for this incredible Tofu Banh Mi from Purple Carrot. The sandwich was so good that it transported me to a place where it is effortless to #PledgePlants and consume 100% plant-based dishes. 

As an omnivore, it is still important for me to cook up vegan meals on a regular basis because doing so reduces my carbon footprint and allows me to focus on nutrient-dense foods that lead to better health outcomes. 

If you want a meal kit that is healthy, easy to make, and extremely delicious, look no further than Purple Carrot. You can use the code Diet30 here to receive $30 off of your first order and thank me later for an out-of this-world gastronomic experience! 

Tofu Banh Mi with Sunflower Seed Pate and Squash Pickles

Adapted from Purple Carrot

Time: 45 Minutes
Serves 2

½ cup sunflower seeds
1 package extra-firm tofu, drained and sliced into 6 pieces
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
⅓ cup potato starch
1 small bunch cilantro, leaves and tender stems
1 garlic clove
1 tbsp olive oil
2 French rolls, sliced lengthwise
2 tbsp Vegenaise®
2 oz squash pickles
2 large carrots (about 5 oz), grated
1 jalapeño, thinly sliced
2 oz spring mix
1 tbsp miso ginger dressing

Preheat the oven to 400°F. 

Place the sunflower seeds in a small saucepan and cover with an inch of water. Bring to a boil over high heat and reduce heat to low for 35 minutes. Drain. 

Wrap each tofu piece in a paper towel and gently press to remove excess water. Lightly season the tofu with salt and pepper.

Place the potato starch on a plate. Coat each piece of tofu in the potato starch, dusting off any excess. Place the tofu on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake until browned and crisp on the top side, about 15 to 20 minutes. Flip and cook on the second side for another 15 minutes.

Add the sunflower seeds to a food processor. Add half the cilantro, 1 clove of garlic, 1 tbsp olive oil, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Pulse until nearly smooth, scraping down the sides of the food processor as necessary.

Place French rolls in the oven to toast, about 3 to 5 minutes.

Spread the sunflower pate on one side of the warm rolls. Spread Vegenaise® on the other side and lay the crispy tofu on top. Add a few squash pickles, remaining cilantro, carrots, and jalapeño slices. 

Divide the spring mix between your plates and drizzle with miso ginger dressing. Add tofu banh mi sandwiches to the plates and serve with any remaining squash pickles.




The Best Barbecue Chicken Sandwich Ever!


It's my birthday and my one year Instagram anniversary! To thank everyone for being a part of my Instagram and social media journey, I've partnered with #Saucin' Sauces on this sponsored post to make this AMAAAAZING chicken sandwich and to offer you a giveaway!

To enter the giveaway, 1. LIKE #Saucin's Instagram account and 2. COMMENT on the above chicken sandwich picture, tagging two friends and mentioning what you'd like to make with their sauce. You have until Thursday, 5/4/17 at 2:30pm to enter! One winner will be selected to win two of Saucin' Sauces' Original barbecue sauce, which is absolutely divine!

Now, this being my birthday, it is definitely a cheat day! I'm just sitting here stuffing my face with fried onions and dunking them in Saucin' every chance I get! I may be exaggerating a little, but it's not completely fiction either! Did I mention it's only 2pm as I'm writing this right now? Plenty of time to eat even more leftovers!

But if it's not your cheat day or your birthday, Saucin' is not only tasty, but it is also a pretty healthy sauce! This is because it has twenty less calories per serving than your average barbecue sauce and has real ingredients that you can recognize on the label! Pretty incredible in my dietitian opinion.

What I also love about Saucin' is that the sauce is versatile. You can put this delicious barbecue sauce on anything ranging from your breakfast eggs, to a chicken salad, to your favorite grilling protein. It's tangy, sweet, and has just a hint of spice that really helps to balance out the flavor.

Are you ready for the best chicken sandwich recipe ever yet?! I used a few great ideas to write this recipe from Serious Eats' article on how to make the best barbecue chicken sandwich. But I also decided to make some insanely delicious fried onion strings to top it all off with help from The Food Network. Everything else pretty much came to me on the fly! 

Be sure to check out Saucin's website and order some of their delicious Original Sauce! They have free shipping too, which makes it a great deal.

The Best Barbecue Chicken Sandwich Ever!

Total Time: 1 Hour, 30 Minutes
Hands-On Time: 30 Minutes
Serves 4

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (~1.5 lbs)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 (12 oz) bottle Saucin' Original Barbecue Sauce
4 slices sharp cheddar cheese slices
4 hamburger bun halves
1 small head iceberg lettuce
2 medium vine ripe tomatoes, thinly sliced

Fried Onion Strings
2 large onions, sliced thinly
2 cups buttermilk
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tbsp salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 tsp cayenne pepper
Canola oil, for frying

Soak two handfuls of oak chips (optional) in a bowl of water for at least 15 minutes and up to two hours. Drain.

Lay chicken flat onto a cutting board. Pound with a mallet or with the back of a heavy frying pan to reach an even 3/4-inch thickness. Pat chicken dry with paper towels and transfer to a medium platter. 

Combine 1 tsp of kosher salt and ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper in a small bowl. Sprinkle over chicken breasts evenly on each side. Refrigerate for 30 minutes. Pat dry with paper towels. 

While the chicken brines, prepare fried onions placing them in a shallow baking dish and pouring buttermilk over the top. Press the onions down so they're submerged as much as possible and let them soak on the counter for 15 minutes and up to one hour.

In a bowl, combine the flour, salt, black pepper and cayenne, and set aside. 

Pour enough canola oil to cover your pot or Dutch oven to a 3-inch depth. Heat to 375 degrees F, or until a pinch of flour sizzles when sprinkled over the pot. 

Using tongs, remove a handful of onions from the buttermilk and immediately dunk into the flour mixture. Coat the onions in the flour mixture, and then tap them on the inside of the bowl to shake off the excess. 

Plunge the onions in the hot oil. Break them up with a spoon and fry for 1-2 minutes, until golden brown. Remove them from the oil and place on a paper towel-lined plate. Repeat with the remaining onion slices. Keep warm.

Clean and oil the barbecue grate. Preheat your charcoal grill by piling and lighting enough coals on one side to produce a medium-high flame. 

Wrap the drained oak chips loosely in aluminum foil, ensuring the ends are able to vent. Set oak chips over the coals, replacing the grate, and let sit for 7-10 minutes, until chips begin to smoke. 

Add 1/2 cup Saucin’ to a small bowl. Reserve for grilling.

Grill chicken for about 3 minutes on one side, basting with reserved Saucin’, and covering between basting. Flip chicken over, and cover, basting with Saucin’ for 2 more minutes. Add cheese to each piece of chicken and cook until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 160F. Transfer chicken to a large plate and keep warm.

Note: If the chicken is cooked well on the outside, but doesn’t reach the proper temperature, transfer to the the cooler side of the grill and cover until cooked through.

Add the buns to the grill. Flip over and cook until toasted on the other side.

Top the bottom bun halves with about 1 tbsp Saucin, followed by the cheesy grilled chicken, lettuce, tomatoes, and fried onions. Drizzle with a little Saucin’ on the top and close with the remaining bun half. Serve immediately and enjoy!

If you liked this recipe, be sure to check out my recipes for Beet Rueben SandwichWhole Wheat Croque-Madames, and Salmon Burger with Chipotle Mayonnaise and Caperberries!



Crispy Pork Cutlet and Fried Egg Sandwich

It’s officially hump day and I think we all need a pick-me-up to get through the week! This pork cutlet sandwich is gooey and crispy at the same time and is bound to delight all of your senses. 

To pull off this fine sandwich on a weeknight, I suggest getting home a little earlier from work since this recipe will take you a little longer than an ideal weeknight meal. But on the upside, wouldn’t you rather spend a few extra minutes in your kitchen than in your office? I thought so! 

If you think your boss will be upset that you left early, you’re sure be in the clear when you bring leftover cutlets to the employee break room. In fact, your boss will be so pleased that you might even be encouraged to leave early more often!

This sandwich is great because the ingredients listed below don’t have to be rigid, which leaves you a lot of room for creativity. Adrian and I recently pickled some kale and knew it would pair perfectly with this sandwich, but if you don’t happen to have something similar in your pantry, feel free to use your favorite minced pickle or relish. We also played around with different spread variations and garden-grown greens. Every variation was exceptional.

I decided on the ingredients below to ease your mind if you’re not feeling super creative mid-week. But if your brain is still high-functioning, feel free to add whatever you wish!

Now what are you waiting for? Get shopping and start cooking!

Crispy Pork Cutlet and Fried Egg Sandwich

Time: 1 Hour
Serves 8

1 tbsp fresh sage, chopped
2 tsp fresh thyme, chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1.25 lb pork tenderloins, sliced crosswise into 3/4-inch-thick medallions
1/2 cup all purpose flour
12 large eggs
2 cups panko breadcrumbs
3/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
Extra-virgin olive oil
2 oz baby arugula
1/2 cup garlic yogurt spread or Greek yogurt with 1 garlic clove, minced
1 large ciabatta roll, sliced crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices
1 tbsp capers, drained
1/2 cup pickled kale or other pickled green, finely chopped
Tabasco sauce

Combine sage and thyme in a small bowl with 1 tsp salt and 1 tsp black pepper.

On a large cutting board, pound the pork medallions with a mallet into 1/4-inch-thick pieces. Rub pork pieces on all sides with the herb mixture.  

Add flour to a large plate or shallow bowl. Whisk 3 eggs in a mixing bowl. Combine breadcrumbs and parmesan on another plate or small shallow bowl.

Coat each cutlet by first dredging lightly in flour, then dipping into the egg mixture, then fully coating with the breadcrumb  mixture.

In a large heavy skillet or Dutch oven, add 3/4 cups olive oil and heat over medium-high heat. Add pork pieces in batches, and cook until golden on each side, about 1-2 minutes. Transfer to a platter and keep warm.

In a medium bowl, combine arugula with 1 tsp olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper. In another small bowl, add yogurt spread and mustard and stir to combine.

In a small shallow skillet, add enough olive oil to cover the bottom of the pan and heat over medium-high heat. Add remaining eggs, one at a time, spooning over olive oil, until the whites have set, but the yolk is still runny. Transfer to a plate, season with salt and pepper. Keep warm.

Baste ciabatta slices with olive oil and season to taste with salt and pepper. Toast or broil slices until golden on each side. Top each ciabatta slice with yogurt-mustard spread, 1 tsp capers, and 1 tbsp kale pickles. Then top with the pork cutlet, fried egg, and garnish with arugula. Season with salt and pepper and serve with a few dashes of Tabasco if you so choose!



Whole Wheat Croque-Madames with Lox and Arugula

I absolutely love eggs! My husband and I dove into Whole Wheat Croque-Madames with Lox and Arugula for lunch today because everything is better with an egg on top, am I right?

I can eat eggs at any meal because they not only make me feel great throughout the day thanks to their high-quality protein content, but also because they’re a nutritional powerhouse! Yup, you heard that right!

The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines removed the limit on dietary cholesterol and support the consumption of eggs with other nutritiously delicious foods, like fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Even more fabulous, if you consume eggs with foods containing vitamin E, like a raw mixed-vegetable salad, you absorb more vitamin E, which is amazing for your immune system, skin, and eyes. So if eggs are delicious AND they’re good for you, I think it pretty much sounds like you’ve got nothing to lose when incorporating them into your next meal!

Whole Wheat Croque-Madame with Lox and Arugula

Time: 45 Minutes
Yield: 4 half sandwiches
Serves 4

5 oz baby arugula
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
1.5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup whole milk
pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
pinch of salt
pinch of black pepper
2/3 cup gruyere cheese, divided
4 slices whole wheat bread
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 oz Black Forest ham, thinly sliced
2 oz lox or smoked salmon
2 tbsp olive oil
4 large eggs

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add arugula and blanch for 3 minutes. Transfer to a colander and cool under cold water. Drain and squeeze out remaining liquid. Set aside.

In a medium saucepan, melt 2 tablespoons butter over medium-low heat. Add flour, and with a whisk, stir constantly for about 3 minutes. Add milk, nutmeg, salt, and pepper, and continue to stir for about 5 minutes, being careful not to brown. Stir in 2 tablespoons of gruyere until it melts. Remove béchamel sauce from heat and cover with wax paper so that it doesn’t dry out.

Set one oven rack a few inches from the top and preheat the broiler.

Arrange bread slices on a plate and spread about 1 tsp béchamel sauce over 2 slices of bread and sprinkle with remaining cheese. Spread 1 tsp of Dijon on remaining two slices of bread and top each slice with ham, lox, and arugula. Carefully flip the slices with gruyere over the slices with ham to close each sandwich.

Lightly oil a foil-lined medium baking pan.

In a medium skillet, add 1 tablespoon butter over medium-low heat. Cook sandwiches for 2 minutes on one side until golden brown. Flip sandwiches over and cook for another 1-2 minutes longer, until golden. Transfer sandwiches to baking pan.

Spread remaining sauce over each sandwich. Broil on the top rack for 2-3 minutes, until the sauce bubbles. Remove from broiler and cover with foil to keep warm.

Meanwhile, in a medium skillet, heat olive oil over medium-low heat. Crack two eggs at a time into skillet and fry, spooning over olive oil, until the whites have set, but the yolk is still runny. Transfer to plates and repeat with remaining eggs, adding more oil if necessary.

Cut each sandwich in half to make four half sandwiches. Top sandwich halves with a fried egg. Serve immediately and enjoy!

Chicken Salad Sandwich with Cherries and Walnuts


I’m so enjoying this sandwich right now and you should be too! It’s healthy, portion-controlled, and guess what, doesn’t require cooking! Well, unless you want to roast the chicken yourself, but that’s not something I feel like doing often in the middle of the week. Now I can look forward to just a few dishes and being well-nourished with protein, whole-grain carbs, a little fruit, and a little veg. Yum!


Chicken Salad Sandwich with Cherries and Walnuts

Time: 10 Minutes
Serves 4

1/4 cup low-fat mayonnaise
1/4 cup dijon mustard
2 tbsp fresh thyme, chopped or 1 tbsp dried
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
Black pepper, one pinch
2 cupsroasted chicken, breast and/or legs, chopped
1/4 cup shallots, finely chopped
2 celery stalks, finely chopped
1/3 cup dried cherries, finely chopped
1/3 cup walnuts, chopped
Whole-grain bread, 8 slices, toasted
Butter lettuce, 4 leaves

In a medium bowl, add mayonnaise, dijon, thyme, lemon juice, and pepper and mix to combine. In a separate bowl, add chicken, shallots, celery, cherries, walnuts, and mix to combine. Stir in mayonnaise mixture.

Add chicken salad to toasted bread and top with a leaf of butter lettuce.