Vegan Pasta, Southwestern Shepherd’s Pie, And No-Bake Cookies On The Cheap

August 22, 2010 by Keri

As you may remember, I was very excited to get started when I purchased Vegan on the Cheap.  But after coming up short on ingredients a few times, it got pushed aside and spent a few weeks buried in my cookbook collection.  When I pulled it from the pile last night, I decided I was going to dust it off and make Vegan on the Cheap this week’s cookbook.  I flipped through to find recipes with ingredients I had on hand and found Penne and Broccoli with Tomatoes, Walnuts, and Raisins ((page 118) for today’s lunch.  I was so surprised at how quick and easy this recipe was to make.  I guess I was thinking “on the cheap” would mean more time-consuming, since I often equate cost with convenience.  The author, Robin Robertson, pegged the cost of this yummy dish at under $1 per serving, but I don’t think that accounts for organic ingredients, so it may have cost us slightly more.  I loved the combination of penne, broccoli, tomatoes, toasted walnuts, and raisins.  The walnuts and raisins really gave the dish a little something extra.

Vegan Pasta Recipes

Vegan Pasta Recipes

I like to try out a dessert from each book I crack open, so after lunch I whipped up a batch of Vegan on the Cheap‘s Chocolate Oatmeal Peanut Butter Cookies (page 221) .  I actually didn’t even realize they were no-bake cookies until I’d already pulled out the ingredients and realized, “Hey, wait a minute. These ingredients look awfully familiar!”  I know I should read the directions first, but I usually figure if I have all the ingredients I’m probably good to go.  These cookies were also very easy to make, but for some reason mine didn’t quite “set up”, despite following the directions to the t.  Perhaps it was the humidity?  But I set them up in the freezer, since I was planning on freezing most of them anyway, which worked well.  Just like the no-bake cookies all the moms used to bring to elementary school Christmas parties… except better because these are vegan!  The no-bake cookies are quoted at 50 cents per serving.

Vegan Cookie Recipes

Dinner was also from, you guessed it, Vegan on the Cheap.  I chose to make the Smoky Southwest Sweet Potato Shepherd’s Pie (page 153).  This dish took slightly longer than the first to prepare, but only because there was quite a bit of steaming and chopping. The “pie” is pinto beans, carrots, onions, corn, and salsa, topped with sweet potatoes mashed with chipotle peppers in adobo for a nice spice.  The recipe actually called for black beans, but I decided to use the pintos I had already cooked and stored in the freezer instead.  I wasn’t sure if I was going to like this or not, but for some reason the recipe screamed to be made, and it was delicious.  This twist on shepherd’s pie is so flavorful!  The meal is priced at less than $1.50 per serving and since it fills an entire 13″x9″ pan, could serve at least 5 people.

Vegan Baking Recipes

Vegan Baking Recipes

I hope everyone had a great weekend!  We just spent some time working on home projects and my little man helped his daddy in the garage.  I was excited when the new VegNews arrived, but they either need to become a weekly magazine or I need to pace myself, because I’m always through the thing in no time flat and ready for the next issue…

How did you spend your weekend?  Do you like to use weekends to relax, get things accomplished, or a little of both?

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I Eat Trees is a blog featuring my adventures in all things vegan. My favorite recipes, snack food finds, and restaurant trials are all on the menu so enjoy!


  1. Nicole of Raspberry Stethoscope says:

    Looks yummy!! Thanks for sharing. I’m intrigued by the cookies, especially:)

  2. bitt says:

    Everything looks delicious! I was excited to get my vegnews too. Great magazine.

    Thanks again for the award. I finally posted my 7 things on my post today.

  3. VegMuffinMan says:

    Those cookies look awesome!! And i bet they taste just as amazing.

  4. Christy says:

    Looks great! I will def need to check out this book when I get back from my 3 month trip and have no money hehe.

    This weekend was busy, mixed with work and play.

  5. Danielle (Runs on Green) says:

    Vegan on the Cheap is def. a cookbook I need to follow…then again I guess it would defeat the purpose of me saving money to buy ANOTHER cookbook haha

    And everytime I’ve made no-bake cookies, they don’t set up either. They still taste good from the freezer!

    • Keri says:

      Well… it’s pretty cheap! 😛 I’ve had the no-bake issue before also. I’m not sure why that is, but thank goodness for freezers!

  6. Stefanie says:

    I made a Shepherd’s pie this weekend too. My pie had pinto beans, corn, mushrooms, onion, zuchinni, and eggplant. I topped it with a mixture of yam and yucca. It was probably as good as yours was.

    That pasta dish sounds great and so do those cookies. 🙂

  7. Kiersten says:

    Everything looks yummy! I haven’t checked out that book yet but I love all of Robin’s other cookbooks. Whenever I get to check out that book the first thing I am trying is that shepherd’s pie!

    • Keri says:

      I don’t know.. that shepherd’s pie was awesome, but tonight I made the comfort loaf and it was amazing too!!