Healthy Vegan Cheese Sticks

I've made these cheese sticks at cooking classes several times, and invariably the response is always "WOW! I can't believe these are vegan, let alone healthy!" They're from Radiance 4 Life, which includes over 105 mouth-watering vegan superfood recipes. 
 

Vegan Cheese Sticks

Yeah, I know—this stretches the boundaries of what a superfood recipe “should” be. But we all need a little comfort food now and then, right? So, we might as well make it as healthy as possible, while still keeping deliciousness as a priority!

 

Cheesy Filling:

▪ ¾ cup cauliflower purée (steam cauliflower until tender and blend until silky smooth)
▪ 1½ cups vegan mozzarella cheese (grated)

Crunchy Breading:

▪ 1¼ cup fine bread crumbs (pulse sprouted grain bread in a food processor)
▪ 2 tablespoons chia seeds (or ground flaxseeds)
▪ 2 teaspoons dried parsley
▪ 1 teaspoon dried basil
▪ ½ teaspoon each: sea salt and garlic granules

For pan-frying: 2-3 tablespoons coconut oil (not extra-virgin)


1. Stir the filling ingredients together and set aside.

2. In a large bowl, combine the breading ingredients thoroughly and set aside.

3. Now I’m about to tell you something very honest, but I trust you can handle it: This next step is going to be tricky. In fact, you might wonder if you can do it. At one point, you may even curse me and my “fricking stupid recipe.” But I promise that if you hang in there, you’ll not only get the hang of it, but also be in a very comfortable position—one that involves gooey, scrumptious cheese sticks.

4. Are you ready to get on board? Then roll up your sleeves and roll up the cheese. To do the latter, remove about 2 tablespoons of cheesy filling and roll it into a little log formation. Next, roll it in the breading until thoroughly coated on all sides. Place on a plate. Repeat until all of the filling is used up, placing all of the sticks on a plate (leaving enough room so that they don’t touch each other). Pop the plate in the freezer for 25 minutes.  

5. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and add the oil. Remove the plate from the freezer. Once the oil is hot, place the cheese sticks on the pan in a single layer and cook, uncovered, until the bottoms are golden-browned. Turn over and continue to cook until golden-browned on all sides. This will take about 2 minutes on each of the 4 sides, for a total of 8 minutes.

6. Remove to a plate and serve.

 

Makes 12 vegan cheese sticks (serves 3-4)/SF/Blue/F (according to the guidelines in my books and Be Radiant program)

 

Photo by Michelle Donner

Photo by Michelle Donner