Sweet Potato Cooler and Summer Lovin’ Salad

By March 29, 2017

We just may have a warm, rain-free weekend upon us! Oh I hope I haven’t jinxed it by saying that. My sister, Dad and I are headed to the Stampede to hit up the gluten-free eats on the midway and rock out to George Canyon at the Coca Cola Stage on Sunday night. There’s nothing worse than enjoying an outdoor concert in the rain. We’re troopers so we’d go either way, but I’m really just hoping for some sunshine! Calgary is acting a bit Summer challenged these days but I’m sure that the +30C weather is just around the corner for us… I can feel it! When it gets hot I find myself drawn to smoothies, salads and charred meat on the grill. Posting a picture of the meals I’ve been trying to make on the barbecue would just be downright embarrassing (for now) so today you get 2 out of 3 of my favorite summer-time meals. Two out of three ain’t bad! … I can’t believe I just linked to a meatloaf video. Who I am?

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Sweet Potato Cooler and Summer Lovin' Salad
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2 cups, 1 serving
Light and refreshing cooler made with cooked sweet potato, apple and banana.
  1. Place in your blender in the order of the ingredients listed, then blend for 30 seconds or until smooth.
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Summer Lovin’ Salad

Vegan, Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Refined sugar-free, Yeast-free, Corn-free, Grain-free, Nut-free Yield:~10 cups salad and 1/2 cup salad dressing  Servings: 4 Sweet and simple gluten-free, vegan salad filled with strawberries, avocado, black beans and smothered in a creamy lemon poppy seed dressing.


  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup uncooked red quinoa, rinsed
  • 10 strawberries, hulled and sliced
  • 1 avocado, peeled and diced
  • 1/2 cup cooked black beans
  • 8 cups mixed greens
Salad dressing


  1. Place water and rinsed quinoa in a medium-sized saucepan. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes with the lid on. Once complete, remove from heat and allow to sit with lid on for 5 minutes. Remove lid, drop quinoa into a bowl and place in the freezer for 10-15 minutes to cool for the salad.
  2. Meanwhile, combine salad dressing ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.
  3. Combine all salad ingredients in a large bowl. Pour dressing over top. Add quinoa and serve.
note: xylitol should be ground before adding to the recipe or you’ll have xylitol crystals in the finished product. If you don’t have xyltiol, feel free to replace with maple syrup to keep vegan, or honey. View nutrition info I love this time of the year – when the Calgary Stampede begins and everyone dresses up, consumes liters of barbecue sauce and falls back in love with country music. So much, that I made (vegan) stampede barbecue lentil sandwiches last year so we could all join in on the festivities. It’s on the list of things to make this weekend! Are you planning to go to the Calgary Stampede this year? Do you have rodeos in your town?

This entry was tagged: black bean, salad, smoothie, strawberry, summer, sweet potato

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