3 Simply Delicious Plant-based Recipes

Minimalist Baker founder Dana Shulz shares recipes from her latest cookbook, including Thai Quinoa Meatballs, Beet + Green Apple Yogurt Smoothies and Cherry Chia Lassi Pops

Credit: Dana Shulz

Bring healthy eating into your home with these nourishing recipes the entire family will love

Founder of the popular Minimalist Baker blog, Dana Shulz devotes her time by sharing easy cooking recipes that require 10 ingredients or less, one bowl or one pot, or 30 minutes or less to prepare.

Taking her passion for simple food one step further, Dana has combined 101 vegan and gluten-free recipes into her latest cookbook titled Minimalist Baker’s Everyday Cooking. Filled with striking photography and nutritional facts, this cookbook offers inspiring and practical meals that can be ready at the table in an instant.

Click through for Dana’s recipes for Thai Quinoa Meatballs, Beet + Green Apple Yogurt Smoothies and Cherry Chia Lassi Pops

Credit: Dana Shulz

Thai Quinoa Meatballs

“These “meatballs” are jam-packed with Thai-inspired flavors and come in a bite-size portion. Serve atop carrot noodles with peanut sauce for a hearty meal that’s bursting with flavour.”


  • 1 15-ounce (425g) can chickpeas, thoroughly rinsed, drained and patted dry
  • 1⁄2 cup (92g) cooked quinoa*
  • 1⁄4 cup (55g) organic brown sugar (or substitute coconut sugar)
  • 2 tbsp (32g) salted peanut butter
  • 2-3 tbsp (30-45ml) tamari or soy sauce (if gluten-free, use tamari)
  • 1⁄4 cup (15g) fresh cilantro, finely chopped, plus more for serving
  • 1⁄4 cup (38g) green onion, finely diced
  • 1 tsp chili  garlic sauce
  • 3⁄4-1 cup (105-140g) roasted salted  peanuts, crushed, plus more for coating

For serving (optional)

  • 6-8  whole carrots (366g), peeled and ribboned or thinly sliced
  • Peanut sauce**
  • Chili garlic sauce
  • Fresh cilantro, chopped
  • Lime juice

*Cook quinoa in vegetable broth for extra flavour.
**Method for peanut sauce can be found in the Resources section.


  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Arrange rinsed and dried chickpeas on foil or parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake for 12-13 minutes to dehydrate, then set aside. Keep oven at 350 F.
  2. Add baked chickpeas to food processor or blender. Mix/pulse on low to pulverize. Alternatively, mash with fork.
  3. Add chickpea mixture and remaining ingredients to mixing bowl. Stir/mix to combine. Taste  and adjust  seasonings as needed. Add more crushed peanuts if too wet (breadcrumbs  work well here, too). I found 1 cup (~140g) to be the perfect amount. This will depend on  how wet your quinoa and peanut  butter are.
  4. Scoop out amounts of dough slightly larger than 1 tablespoon. Gently roll into balls. Roll in additional crushed peanuts to coat.
  5. Spray foil-lined baking sheet  used earlier with nonstick spray. Add  meatballs. Bake for 15  minutes, then gently turn/flip to  ensure even cooking. Bake for another 10-15 minutes, or to desired  doneness. The longer the meatballs cook, the firmer they will get. Once they cool a little, they firm up even more.
  6. While baking, prepare any additional serving items. To cook carrots, bring pot of water to a boil, add ribboned  carrots, and cook for 2-3 minutes or until just tender. Strain and set aside.
  7. Serve meatballs over carrot noodles with peanut sauce, chili garlic sauce, fresh cilantro,  and lime juice.
  8. Leftovers will keep covered in the refrigerator for 2-3 days, though best when  fresh. Reheat in 350 F oven until warmed through. See note below for freezing instructions.


To freeze, arrange uncooked meatballs on parchment-lined baking sheet  and freeze until firm. Transfer to freezer-safe container or bag and freeze for up to one month. To cook, place on foil-lined baking sheet and spritz with oil to encourage browning. Bake for 20-30 minutes in 350 F oven, or until warmed  through, gently tossing/flipping at the halfway point to ensure even cooking.

Nutrition Facts

  • calories: 441
  • total fat:21.2g
  • saturated fat: 3g
  • carbohydrates: 49.3g
  • sodium: 831mg
  • fiber: 5.8g
  • sugars: 17.9g
  • protein: 17.9g

Credit: Dana Shulz

Beet + Green Apple Yogurt Smoothie

“Beets? In a smoothie? Yes! And I promise you will be surprised at how the yogurt and berries work together to mask the intense earthiness of this gorgeous root vegetable. Loaded with tons of vitamins and nutrients, this vibrant smoothie is an unexpected favourite among the breakfast selections.”


  • 1 green apple (250g), cored and quartered (weighed whole)
  • 1 small red beet (82g), skin removed, quartered*
  • 1 1/4 cups (320g) soy or coconut vanilla yogurt (if plain, add vanilla  extract and sweetener of choice)**
  • 1⁄2 cup (60g) mixed frozen berries
  • 1⁄4 cup (60ml) unsweetened almond milk or orange juice
  • 1⁄2 lime, juiced (1 tbsp or 15ml)

*If you’re beet-averse I would suggest swapping out the beet for an extra 1⁄2  cup (60g) berries.
**If you can’t find dairy-free yogurt, omit it and sub one small frozen banana and 1⁄4  cup (60ml) more almond milk.


  1. Add all ingredients to blender and blend on high until creamy and smooth (typically 1-2 minutes)
  2. Taste and adjust flavour as needed, adding more berries for sweetness, lime for acidity, yogurt for creaminess, or a few ice cubes to thicken and chill.
  3. Divide between two glasses and serve immediately. Best when fresh.​​

Yields: 2 glasses
Prep time: 10 mins

Nutrition Facts 

  • calories: 246  
  • carbohydrates: 44.7g            
  • sugars: 34g 
  • total fat: 4.6g        
  • sodium: 76mg                  
  • protein: 1.5g 
  • saturated fat: 0.5g  
  • fiber: 5.2g

Credit: Dana Shulz

Cherry Chia Lassi Pops

“I couldn’t  help but wonder what would happen if I froze  a cherry  lassi. The results were delicious! These creamy, cherry-filled pops make the perfect summer dessert, and are a great recipe to prepare with kids!”


  • 12 ounces (340g)  vegan vanilla or cherry-flavoured yogurt*
  • 1⁄2 cup (118ml) light coconut milk or plain unsweetened almond milk
  • 2⁄3 cup (~93g) pitted sweet red cherries, chopped (fresh or frozen), divided
  • 1 tbsp (12g) chia seeds
  • 1-2 tbsp (15-30ml) maple syrup or coconut sugar (optional) 

*Soy cherry yogurt is an ideal flavour, though vanilla soy or coconut work here, too.


  1. Add  yogurt, coconut milk, maple syrup or coconut sugar (optional), and half the cherries to blender. Purée until creamy and smooth.
  2. Add  remaining cherries and chia seeds. Pulse to just combine. There should be some chunky pieces remaining.
  3. Pour into popsicle molds. Recipe should yield eight large pops or 12 to 14 small pops, depending on size of molds.
  4. Freeze until  firm, at least 4 to 6 hours and enjoy! Best within 5 to 7 days.

Yields: ~10 lassi pops
Prep time: 10 mins (not including freezing time) 

Nutrition Facts

  • calories: 77                   
  • carbohydrates: 9.5g      
  • sugars: 7.9g
  • total fat: 3.8g                
  • sodium: 5mg              
  • protein: 1.9g
  • saturated fat: 2.6g      
  • fiber: 0.7g