Vegan Artichoke “Crab” Cakes

Crab cakes. Ohhh crab cakes. All of that delicious craby goodness, without the pain of actually peeling crabs. But let me back up for a second. One question that I get fairly often… “If you’re a vegan, why would you even want something that tastes the same as meat/seafood/dairy/whatever.” The answer is simple. I l like the taste of animal products. Tell all your friends, shout it from the rooftops. A lot of (I’d venture to say, most) vegans don’t follow a plant based lifestyle because they hate steak and cheese. They do it because they have decided that either their health or the environment or their love of animals is more important than the fact that they like fried chicken. Sure, there are plenty of people out there who simply don’t love the taste of animal products, and that’s great! Every person has their own reasons for following their specific lifestyle. Mine happens to be, first and foremost, my own health. Call me selfish, but that’s the reason I started eating plant based. Slowly, over time, the ethical and environmental benefits of veganism have made a connection with me. Anyways, I could go on about personal choices forever, but the point is, I like the taste of crab cakes, I grew up eating them, and I found a way to veganize them so I can enjoy them while still adhering to my current lifestyle.

Growing up, we went to the beach every year, sometimes twice a year. My aunt had a condo in Panama City that she let us use for a week or two. Theres this amazing restaurant about an 45 minutes or so away from that condo called The Red Bar where we would go eat AT LEAST twice every time we were there. I know 45 minutes seems like a pretty dramatic distance to drive for dinner, but this place is worth it. They have rotating menu items, but one item that they always offer is crab cakes, and holy moly they are good. The perfect balance of enough crab, not too much “cake”, a little spicy, a little sweet, just overall perfection. No other crab cake has ever measured up for me.

After getting home from our most recent beach vacation, I had crab cakes on the brain. Honestly, I was pretty bummed about not getting any of those delicious little guys while we were there. I set out to create a veganized “crab” cake recipe to fill the void. So what has that briney, salty, seafood type flavor and can be cut up into crab texture like pieces? Enter, canned artichokes. I already loved artichokes before, but this recipe has helped me see them in a whole new light. Artichokes can do anythiiiiiing. Okay, maybe not anything, but they’re way more versatile than they get credit for. I also tossed in some capers for even more of that salty ocean like flavor, plus veggies, lemon, and seasoned salt for that traditional crab cake flavor. I decided to oven bake these guys rather than pan fry to reduce the amount of oil needed.

Overall, they came out SO GOOD. Even Liam loved them, so they’re toddler approved, folks. After pulling these babies out of the oven, I decided that they could use a dipping sauce. Every great dish deserves a sauce, right? So I whipped together a spicy creamy sauce with some dijon mustard, sriracha, and cashew cream. It was the perfect complement, and again, Liam loved it. (Be warned, it may be too spicy for some kids, he’s always been a spice-aholic like his mama). I ended up eating the cakes with a little sauce on top by themselves, but put the leftovers on a bun with some pickles and lettuce as a sandwich and it was ahhhmazing. With some oven fries dipped in more of that lovely sauce? Sign me up, yall. So eat your heart out, Red Bar chef. Artichoke cakes are the new hot ticket.

Vegan Artichoke "Crab" Cakes

A delicious vegan version of classic seafood crab cakes.

Course Appetizer
Keyword appetizer, artichoke, crab cake
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 4


Artichoke Cakes

  • 1 can artichoke hearts juice reserved
  • 1 stalk celery finely chopped
  • 1/2 red bell pepper diced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 stalks green onion thinly sliced
  • 2 tbsp parsley fresh, chopped
  • 1 tbsp capers chopped
  • 1 tbsp artichoke juice
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat bread crumbs
  • 1 tsp seasoned salt I used Trader Joe's
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 lemon juice from

Spicy Mustard Cream Sauce

  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp sriracha sauce
  • 3 tbsp cashew cream soaked cashews, blended


  1. Clean and chop all produce.

  2. Preheat oven to 450F.

  3. Soak chia seeds in 1 tbsp of water for at least 15 minutes.

  4. Drain artichokes and reserve juice. Roughly chop artichokes.

  5. Combine artichokes, soaked chia seeds, and chopped produce with all other ingredients in a large bowl.

  6. Add more artichoke juice or bread crumbs as needed for consistency. It should be thick enough to form patties but not dry. 

  7. Form into palm sized patties and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. 

  8. Bake at 450F for 25 minutes, flipping halfway through.

  9. For sauce, mix all ingredients together in a small bowl. 

  10. Top cakes with fresh squeezed lemon juice after removing from oven. Serve topped with sauce, sliced green onion, and fresh parsley. 

  11. Other serving ideas:

    Use as a topper for a romaine and lemon vinaigrette salad. 

    Serve on a bun with pickles, lettuce, red onion, and sauce.

    Form mixture into balls instead of patties and serve on skewers as a party appetizer. 

Summer Orzo Pasta Salad

Summer Orzo Pasta Salad | vegan plant based vegetarian pasta salad easy recipe

Ahh pasta salad. My ultimate go-to broke college kid meal. A package of noodles, some Italian salad dressing, cheese, some shrimp or chicken was considered gourmet back in those days. These days, cutting out animal products and heavily processed foods means that I’ve had to come up with a totally new way to get my pasta salad fix. Since it’s always a family barbecue staple, this Memorial Day weekend had me craving a good pasta salad more than usual.

Since it’s early summer, my mom’s garden is growing like crazy, so I’ve always got buckets full of fresh homegrown whatevers. This week it happened to be cucumbers and tomatoes. I don’t know about yall, but simple sliced tomatoes and cucs with some salt and pepper has always been a favorite go-to snack of mine. I decided to go that route with this recipe and just dress it up a bit.

One of my all time favorite salad dressings is a simple 50/50 mix of olive oil and red wine vinegar with a touch of oregano and pepper. For this salad, I combined a tiny teaspoon of olive oil (remember that thing about cutting down on processed foods? Refined oils fall under that category, so I try to keep them to a minimum), some red wine vinegar, lemon juice, tons of fresh chopped oregano out of my herb garden, red chili flakes, freshly ground black pepper, and Himalayan pink sea salt.

I decided to go with orzo for two reasons. 1. I had it in my pantry. 2. I hadn’t had any in a while. That’s it! Really any other pasta would also work, especially the “traditional” pasta salad varieties like rotini or bowtie. I’m glad I went with the orzo, though! For some reason, I find that it always pairs really well with lemon, so those two really tied the whole situation together for me.

This recipe filled a medium casserole dish to the brim, so it makes plenty for a family get together or for lunch prep throughout the week.

Hope you guys enjoy!


Summer Orzo Pasta Salad | vegan plant based vegetarian easy pasta salad recipe

Summer Orzo Pasta Salad

Summery, light pasta salad with fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, and herbs.

Course Side Dish
Cuisine American, Mediterranean
Keyword orzo, pasta, salad
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 65 kcal


  • 1 cucumber diced
  • 2 roma tomatoes diced
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 4-6 sprigs fresh oregano stems removed, chopped
  • 1.5 cup orzo cooked
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 4 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 lemon juice from
  • 1 tsp pink salt
  • 1 tbsp black pepper freshly ground
  • 2 tsp crushed red pepper more or less to taste


  1. Cook orzo according to package instructions. Drain and set aside to cool.

  2. Wash all produce. Dice cucumber and tomatoes. Finely chop garlic and fresh oregano.

  3. In a large bowl, combine olive oil, red wine vinegar, lemon juice, salt, pepper, crushed red pepper, garlic, and oregano. 

  4. Add cooked orzo, diced tomato, and cucumber and stir well to combine. Add more salt, pepper, or crushed red pepper to taste.

  5. Chill before serving.

Vegan Southwestern Chickpea Frittata


Vegan Southwestern Chickpea Frittata Recipe by the crispy mama | dairy free | egg free

Eggs were probably my biggest breakfast staple before going plant based. They were quick, easy, and versatile. After adopting a plant based vegan diet, I found myself missing a quick and easy savory breakfast option. I tried the ever-popular vegan tofu scramble and wasn’t a fan. Honestly, I found it bland, boring, with a less than pleasant texture. After searching for vegan egg options (and weeding through about a zillion posts about flax seeds), I finally discovered chickpea flour. It’s often used as a gluten free flour option for baking, but also creates a nice egg like texture when combined with water and spices. I used Bob’s Red Mill Stone Ground Garbanzo Bean Flour that I found at Whole Foods, but any brand will work. Now for some nutritional information… It’s fairly light in calories, while being a decent source of fiber and protein. Check out the full nutritional info here. This frittata uses Trader Joe’s Vegan Soy Chorizo, fajita veggies, black beans, and spinach as fillings, but the recipe is really customizable. Basically anything that you would put in a traditional frittata, you can put in here.

My toddler loves this, but note that he’s pretty tolerant of spicy foods. I’d suggest toning down the spice factor by using a different vegan sausage option and less chili powder and paprika if you don’t want to feel the burn. Unfortunately, it isn’t the prettiest thing to look at but it’s SO DANG GOOD. I brought the leftovers to work for an on-the-go breakfast and was surprised at how well it reheated. I popped it in the microwave for about a minute, covered with a damp paper towel and it was just as good as it was straight out of the oven.

vegan southwestern chickpea frittata by the crispy mama dairy free egg free

Vegan Southwestern Chickpea Frittata

Spicy, smoky, savory, egg and dairy free frittata recipe.

Course Breakfast, Main Course
Cuisine American, Mexican
Keyword chickpea, frittata
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 4 people
Calories 180 kcal


  • 3/4 cup chickpea flour
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp cumin ground
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp Himalayan pink salt or more to taste
  • 1 tsp black pepper or more to taste
  • 1/2 zucchini sliced
  • 1/2 purple onion sliced
  • 1/2 cup mushrooms sliced
  • 1/4 red bell pepper sliced
  • 1/4 package Trader Joe's Vegan Soy Chorizo
  • 1 cup spinach
  • 1/2 cup black beans canned, cooked


  1. Mix together chickpea flour, water, baking powder, and spices and set aside in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to absorb. 

  2. In a large frying pan, sauté zucchini, purple onion, sliced mushrooms, red bell pepper, adding water as needed to prevent sticking.

  3. Add soy chorizo to veggies and cook until slightly crispy.

  4. Add spinach and cook until wilted, adding more water if needed.

  5. Add chorizo veggie mixture and black beans to the chickpea flour mixture.

  6. Pour into a nonstick, oven safe, preferably cast iron skillet and bake at 400F for approximately 30 minutes or until slightly browned at the edges and cooked through.

  7. Top with vegan cheese, fresh cilantro, salsa, vegan sour cream, fresh oregano, or any other desired toppings.

Three Bean Chipotle Sweet Potato Chili


Three Bean Chipotle Sweet Potato Chili | chili, vegan, recipe, sweet potato, chipotle, slow cooker, crockpot, cheap recipe, healthy recipe, quick recipe, easy recipeI have a borderline obsession with “spoon foods.” Soups, stews, chilis; if you eat it with a spoon, you can bet I want some. Since having Liam, not only am I trying to lose a few extra pounds, but funds have been a bit tighter than usual. The easiest way to remedy both of those problems is to cut down on meat. This chili comes out so thick and hearty, you really won’t miss the meat, and you get all of the lean protein that you need from the beans. The prep is so easy. I make it in the crockpot, but it can also be made on the stovetop just as easily. I like to make a big batch so I have enough to bring to work all week or to use the leftovers to make a whole new meal. Be warned, it comes out pretty spicy. You can cut down some of the spice measurements if throat burn isn’t your thing. A couple secret ingredients add that element of “Hmm, what is that?”



  • 1 large sweet potato
  • 1 small onion
  • 1/4 red bell pepper
  • 1/4 green bell pepper
  • 1 can kidney beans
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1 can pinto beans
  • 1 can diced tomatoes and green chilis (medium)
  • 1 can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 2 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp cumin
  • 1 Tbsp chipotle powder
  • 1 Tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 Tbsp onion powder
  • 1 Tbsp dried parsley
  • 1/4 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/4 tsp cocoa powder
  • 1/8 tsp (or just a dash) cinnamon
  • salt and pepper to taste


Peel the sweet potato and cut it in half. Place half of sweet potato in a pot of water and bring to a boil. Boil for about 15 minutes until soft. While potato is boiling, cut the other half of the sweet potato into 1/2-1 inch cubes. Chop onion and red bell pepper. Add to crock pot and turn to high. Drain beans and add. Add all remaining ingredients and stir to combine. Once sweet potato is done boiling and soft, puree in food processor or blender and add to crock pot. Stir again to combine and cook on high for 4 hours, or preferably low for 6 hours.

Top with dairy free cheese and coconut yogurt.


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Three Bean Chipotle Sweet Potato Chili | chili, vegan, recipe, sweet potato, chipotle, slow cooker, crockpot, cheap recipe, healthy recipe, quick recipe, easy recipe