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Cook Once, Eat Twice or Three Times…….

There is nothing I like better than getting several meals/snacks out of one bout of cooking which is the premise behind batch cooking.  The problem is that I rarely get it together enough to batch cook for the whole week.  I’m trying to give myself some grace as far as that is concerned but every now and then I stumble across a recipe that I use several ways with very little effort.  For me that is like hitting the lottery because I only have to cook once and I have lots of weekday meals and snacks.  I can’t take credit for the base recipes (thank you Nutmeg Notebook) but I can take credit for how I use them and a new creation that meat and non-meat eaters alike gobbled up recently at a family get-together.  See if you can come up with another use for these recipes!  I love to hear about it!


Base Recipes

Chili Lentils for Tacos


1 pound brown lentils, rinsed (you can use green lentils you just have to increase the cooking time)

2 tbsp water or vegetable broth

1 onion finely chopped

3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped

¼ cup chili powder (start with 2 tbsp and add more to taste)

1-2 tbsp ground cumin

1 can (15 oz) tomatoes, diced (I might even add another can if you like tomatoes)

Salt and pepper to taste



  1. Bring 5 cups of water and lentils to a boil in a covered 12-inch skillet. Reduce heat to medium and cook until the water is almost absorbed and the lentils are just tender about 12 minutes (green lentils took 20-25 minutes) Turn off the heat.
  2. Meanwhile, heat the 2 tbsp water or broth in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until tender, about 5 minutes.  Add the garlic, chili powder, cumin and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.  Add the cooked lentils and canned tomatoes.  Adjust the seasonings to taste.



Donna’s Vegan Cheeze Sauce



2 cups white potatoes, diced large

1 cup carrots, diced large

¾ cups water

1 teaspoon Benson’s Table Tasty Salt Substitute or another favorite salt substitute

1 tbsp fresh lemon juice (or more)

½ cup Nutritional Yeast

½ tsp garlic powder

½ tsp onion powder

¾ tsp smoked paprika

Dash of cayenne pepper



  1. Boil the potatoes and carrots until soft and drain.
  2. Place the cooked carrots and potatoes and the rest of the ingredients in a high-powered blender until smooth.  Add more water if it is too thick.  If it’s too thin add a little more potato.  Adjust the seasoning to taste.  I often add more no salt seasoning and lemon to give it some tang.


How can I use these recipes?

  • Lentil tacos- Using corn or flour tortillas treat them like you would any taco adding taco sauce, salsa, cilantro, pickled onions and of course the vegan cheeze sauce on top.
  • Nachos- Create nachos using the lentils for the meat and the vegan cheeze sauce for the cheese.
  • Rice and Beans- Use the Chili Lentil recipe over brown rice for a quick and easy lunch or week night meal.
  • Baked potato bar- Bake potatoes and top them with lentils, broccoli, cheeze sauce or whatever you enjoy putting on your potatoes.
  • Mexican Dip- My personal favorite


Riley’s Cheezy Lentil Mexican Dip


Chili Lentils

Donna’s Vegan Cheeze  Sauce

Store bought or homemade salsa



  1. Combine 1 cup lentils, ½ cups cheeze sauce and ½ cup salsa together in a bowl.
  2. Heat for 1 minute or so in the microwave to heat through and thoroughly combine.
  3. Serve with tortilla chip or corn chips warm or room temperature.






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