Mama Mia Shroom Pasta! Meatless Monday with Carmen Garcia

MamaMiaShroomPasta copy PD

Level: Medium
Serves: 2

4 cups spinach fettucini, boiled
10-12 medium baby bella mushrooms
1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes, bottled in olive oil and italian herbs
1 garlic bulb, baked
1 tsp agave nectar
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
2 tablespoon panko crust
1/4 tsp substitute salt
1/2 tsp cracked pepper
1/2 fresh fresh parsley, finely chopped
2 tablespoon nutritional yeast
1 tablespoon capers, rinsed and drained
1 tablespoon Worchestershire sauce
2 tsp olive/canola oil
1 tsp dried oregano

Pre-soak mushrooms in a plastic bowl with water and Worchestershire sauce for 30 min.

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.

Cut off top of garlic bulb and drizzle agave nectar over garlic.

Place on a cookie sheet and bake for 15 minutes. Set aside.

In a plastic bowl mix 1tsp. oil, parsley, garlic, capers, oregano, capers, salt and pepper.

Wash and twist off mushroom stems evenly.

Brush or rub 1 tsp oil on mushrooms and stuff with mixture.

In a medium sauce pan bring water to a boil and add pasta until tender.

Sprinkle oregano herbs and serve.


Sloppy Jane! Meatless Monday with Carmen Garcia!

SloppyJane01 copy Meatless Monday PD

Sloppy Jane

Level: Easy and Quick!
Serves 4

vegan Sloppy Joe mix, one box
2 cups bella mushrooms, sliced
1 small red onion, sliced
1 small tomato, sliced
1 3 oz. tomato paste
1tsp olive/canola oil
2 tablespoons, Liquid Smoke
4 Ezekiel (flourless) toasted english muffin
1/4 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
1 small dill pickle, sliced


In a medium sauce pan bring 1 3/4 water to a boil. Mix in tomato paste.
Stir frequently. Lower heat and simmer.

Pour Sloppy Joe mix into water and tomato paste. Stir until ingredients thicken. Cover and simmer.

In a separate pan, add oil and lightly brown onions.

Set aside. In same pan, saute mushrooms with 2 tablespoons of Liquid Smoke and parsley until light golden brown.

Toast the english muffins. Add all of the fixings and serve.

The Sloppy Jane is a super fast and easy way to whip up a healthy and meatless meal. It is high in protein and fiber.

The flourless and sprouted grains of the english muffin is a low GI carbohydrate food that also contains fiber, protein, vitamins and minerals. It barely contains zero fat and it’s a filling meal for lunch or dinner.

Don’t let “Jane” fool you with the name. Both hearty and light, you won’t even notice it is a meatless and tasty treat.

In Gusto!

The Turista Chef
–Carmen Garcia


Turista Chef Carmen Garcia’s Meatless Monday Recipe


A little bit about Carmen…

Carmen Garcia is an internationally recognized fitness celebrity, proactive in all levels of nutrition, health, wellness, and yoga principles.

An all around athlete with a competitive nature and a zest for healthy living, Carmen’s philosophy: spiritual, physical, emotional, and mental well being are the inseparable ingredients to a healthy life.

Carmen has worked hard to become one of America’s most popular fitness models, appearing in numerous publications, commercials, seminars and workshops. As a world class chef and entrepreneur, Ms. Garcia continues to re-invent herself via new challenges and accomplishments.

Carmen is a proud member and spokesperson for PETA (People for Ethical Treatment of Animals), a fitness instructor and nutritional consultant certified by the Professional Personal Trainer’s Association (USPTA); and a member of IDEAfit, having studied with the International Sports and Science Association.

Leaving the old paradigms behind of stressing the body with strenuous workouts and hardcore weight training trends, moderation is the key for this femme-fit guru. Not only does she speak four languages (Spanish, Portuguese, Italian and English), her company, Fitbody Star offers live and online education to an ever-growing international audience.

A world traveler and true “foodie” at heart, Carmen’s mantra is to achieve balance through proper nutrition from plant (protein) sources, supplementation, and variations on classic exercise techniques, to achieve homeostasis and improve overall quality of life through a sound mind, body, and spirit.

Promoting her unique style of vegan cooking as the “Turista Chef”, she writes with signature joie de vivre about a hidden world of exotic destinations and cultures through the lens of the traditional and not so traditional regional cuisine.

Fitbody Star offers instruction in: nutrition, indoor/outdoor activity, yoga movement and stretching, dance form, body and weight strengthening, interval training, outdoor circuit training, boot camp, kickboxing techniques, plyometrics, meditation, core training and overall functional training for better sports & daily task performance.

Learn more about Carmen Garcia, and visit her at:

Color vibrancy, rich and nutritious flavors is what makes this dish so deLIGHTfully tasty. Inspired by roots of Jamaica, I’ve prepared this easy vegan dish with an array of spices that burst into tropical flavors.

Recipe courtesy of Carmen Garcia

JamaicanJerkPortabello copy PD

Jamaican Jerk Portabello

Serves 2
1 cup brown basmati rice, steamed
2 large portabello mushrooms, sliced
1 small banana squash, steamed/seeded and chopped into medium size cubes.
1 small red bell pepper, sliced into strips
1 small green bell pepper, sliced into strips
2 cups of organic black beans, drained (canned for quick and easy)

Jerk Pineapple Marinade

1 small red onion, chopped
1 small serrano green chili, minced (seeds removed)
1 cup pineapple, cubed
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 small lime juice
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1/4 cup light soy sauce
1/4 cup parsley, finely chopped
1 tbsp Pompeian olive/canola oil
1/2 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp coriander
1/4 tsp turmeric
1/4 tsp sea salt or substitute salt

Steam rice in a slow cooker or rice cooker before you begin to prep and cook the Portabello mushrooms and marinade.

Mix all marinade ingredients and set aside in a plastic or glass bowl. Slice Portabello mushrooms and mix into marinade bowl.

Store in fridge over night or for a minimum of 1-2 hours before cooking. When ready to cook, pre-heat large wok on high/med by lubricating the wok with the canola/olive oil.

Stir in all of the ingredients of the marinade and mushrooms only.

Lower heat and cover allowing steam to soften the mushrooms for about 5-8 minutes depending on how tender you wish as they tend to shrink with prolonged heat.

In a separate medium sized pan, steam banana squash for 12 minutes or until tender. Toss in the bell peppers during the last 4- 5 minutes.

If they lose their color vibrancy, you have over cooked them. In another small sauce pan heat black beans on low.

Find a beautiful plate and pack the rice into a small bowl and onto the center of the plate.

Carefully arrange and assort all of the ingredients as you wish and top with sprinkled coconut shreds and slivered raw almonds.

Almonds, beans and Portabello mushrooms are loaded with protein, fiber and nutrients. The steamy fragrant rice and fibrous vegetables are delicious as a low GI (glycemic index) food topped with an unforgettable pineapple chutney sauce and a spicy jerk marinade. This dish is low in fat and moderate in carbohydrates. High in protein, fiber and nutrients.


Beet Cucumber Salad

Beetcucumber Salad

Certified Fitness Trainer, Life Fit Coach and Veg-Chef writer, Carmen Garcia has contributed her Beet Cucumber Appetizer Salad today.

Carmen is passionate about fitness, vegan diet and nutrition and it shows in her vitality and excitement for sharing her experiences and recipes with others.

Beet Cucumber Salad Appetizer

Easy Recipe, Serves 4


2 medium beets, chopped
1 medium cucumber, chopped
1/2 cup organic sauerkraut
2 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
4 leaves, savoy cabbage, raw or lightly steamed
1 tsp dried dill weed herb
20 raw almonds (pre-soaked for tenderness)
sea salt, dash
raw sugar, dash


Steam beets for 15-20 minutes (depending on how tender you prefer).
Rinse with cold water.

Set aside. Mix cucumber, sauerkraut, dill and rice
wine vinegar in a bowl.

Add a dash of raw sugar and sea salt is optional for

Chill all of the ingredients scoop ingredients into cabbage leaf cups.

Garnish with a small portion of almonds in the center of dish for extra crunch.

You may add slivered or whole (raw or roasted) almonds over cabbage cups.

Tip: If you prefer a bit more tender veggies vs. raw and crunchy, lightly steam each appetizer to serve warm.


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