Cooking Tips + Kitchen Tips

Published on June 30th, 2011 | by The Healthy Voyager


Eating Vegan: The July 4th Edition

eating veganjuly 4th fireworks

The biggest party of the summer is coming up, so it’s time to gather your shopping lists and get cookin’! Whether you’re partying with family and friends or packin’ a picnic to watch fireworks this July 4th, tasty treats are a necessity. Check out this menu of recipes and go party like it’s 1776!!

Homemade Tangy Grilled Tater Chips

  • 4 medium Yukon gold potatoes, scrubbed
  • Safflower oil (or preferred high heat oil)
  • Sea salt and pepper
  • Malt vinegar

Heat the grill to medium. Place potatoes in a pot of cold water, add 1 tablespoon of salt and cook until potatoes are tender, but still firm, about 10 minutes. Drain, let cool and slice into 1/4-inch thick slices.

Brush the potatoes on both sides with the oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill the slices until golden brown on both sides and just cooked through, about 10 minutes.

Remove the slices to a platter in an even layer and immediately drizzle with the vinegar and season with salt.

Basil-y Corn

  • 2 sticks vegan butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup basil leaves, plus more for garnish
  • Salt and pepper
  • 8 ears corn, husked and kernels removed
  • Chopped green onion, for garnish

Combine the butter and basil in a food processor and process until smooth, season with salt and pepper, to taste, and pulse a few more times. Scrape into a small bowl.

Put a large saute pan on the grill over low heat and add the basil butter. When the butter is hot add the corn kernels and saute for 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with torn basil leaves and scallions.

Stuffed Shroom Burger

  • 4 portobello mushrooms stemmed
  • 6 ounces vegan feta cheese (recipe below)
  • 2 lemon, sliced
  • 4 whole wheat buns
  • 2 bunches arugula
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup vegan mayonnaise

Clean gills from mushrooms. Stuff vegan feta into mushroom cavity. Grill stuffed mushrooms 10 to 15 minutes, add lemons and bread to the grill. Combine garlic, mayonnaise and remaining 1 teaspoon lemon juice for aioli.  Spread aioli generously onto bun. Add arugula, grilled mushroom and grilled lemons to burger.

Vegan Feta

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 lb firm tofu, pressed, drained and crumbled

Place everything but the tofu in the bowl and whisk together. Add tofu, stir, and let sit for at least an hour.

Piled High Southwest Hot Dogs

  • Guacamole
  • Salsa
  • 8 vegan hot dogs
  • 8 hot dog buns, split 3/4 of the way through
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded vegan Cheddar
  • 8 pickled jalapenos, thinly sliced
  • Corn tortilla chips, coarsely crumbled

Preheat the grill to high. Grill hot dogs until golden brown on all sides, about 7 minutes. Remove to a plate. Place buns on the grill cut side down and grill until lightly golden brown, about 20 seconds. Place hot dogs in the buns, top with cheese, jalapeno, guacamole, salsa and tortilla chips.

Tea and Lemonade Cupcakes

  • 1 cup soy milk
  • 5 black tea bags
  • 1 cup vegan butter
  • 2 cups sugar
  • egg replacer for 4 eggs (EnerG brand works well)
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 tablespoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoons salt
  • Frosting, recipe below

In a small saucepan over medium heat, heat milk until hot to the touch. Place tea bags in hot milk, and let steep for 15 to 20 minutes. Remove and discard tea bags and let cool.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 (12-cup) muffin pans with paper liners.

In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Beat in egg replacers, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add 1/2 cup milk and tea mixture, lemon zest and lemon juice. Mix well.

In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt. Gradually add dry mix into the wet ingredients.

Spoon batter evenly into prepared muffin cups. Bake for 20 to 22 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove from pans, and cool completely on wire racks. Spread or pipe frosting evenly over cupcakes.


  • 1 cup vegan butter, softened
  • 2 cups confectioners’ sugar, divided
  • 1/2 cup reserved milk/tea mixture
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

In a large bowl, beat butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Gradually beat in confectioners’ sugar alternately with tea/milk mixture slowly. Beat in lemon juice until creamy.

Fireworks Shots

  • 1/2 oz grenadine
  • 1/2 oz vodka
  • 1/2 oz blue curaçao

Pour the grenadine into a shot glass. Float vodka on top of the grenadine. Float the blue curaçao on top of the vodka.

Do any of you have tried-and-true vegan recipes for July 4th? Share away in the comments!

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Image Credit: Creative Commons photo by jeff_golden

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About the Author

The Healthy Voyager, aka Carolyn Scott-Hamilton, is the Vegan Executive Producer, Creator, Host and Writer of The Healthy Voyager web series & radio show, site, blog, and overall brand. A nutritionist, chef, film making, screen writing, traveling, singing, dancing, fun-loving, healthy & green living wife, The Healthy Voyager aims to help people live well, one veggie at a time!

2 Responses to Eating Vegan: The July 4th Edition

  1. Pingback: Happy Fourth of July! | ecokaren

  2. Janie says:

    I posted “Help There’s a Vegan at My BBQ” with some tips for non-vegan hosts.

    Also lots of recipes, but I think I’m bringing Vegan Caprese Salad. Your corn with the basil sounds yummy. I LOVE fresh basil.

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