Green Goddess Hangover Helpers Laidback Lunch Uncategorized

Veggie Panini with Jalapeño-Lime Mayo (Vegan)

23rd December 2016


I know… it’s been quite a while since I lasted posted. You miss me! I get it. But trust me: this post is worth the wait.

In my last post, I gave a shout out to Sol Food, one of my fave restaurants in the Bay Area. Well, surprise surprise! I’ve got another copycat recipe for you from the same joint. If I’m at Sol Food, and I’m not eating the shrimp, I’m eating this.


I feel like a lot of times the veggie option gets the back seat at restaurants that feature a lot of meat options (duh). But even worse is when the only vegetarian option is ~*healthy*~ in an overstated way. Don’t get me wrong, I love to fill up on fresh veggies, but not every veggie sandwich needs to come on a 9-seed, gluten-free, organic, cage-free, grass-fed bun.


So enter this sandwich. It’s packed with a balanced mixture of cooked and fresh veggies, done the right way, pressed between a chewy French roll with melty pepper jack cheese and slathered with a tangy jalapeño-lime aioli. Boom shaka laka. THAT’S how you do a veggie sandwich.


I always give credit where credit is due…. especially to myself. And, unapologetically tooting my own horn, I nailed this panini masterpiece. AND I made it vegan. So please go make yourself this sandwich so you can toot my horn with me.



Prep Time | Cook Time | Total Time

10 mins     | 10 minutes |   20 mins

Makes 2 sandwiches


  • 1 tbsp canola oil
  • 2 French sandwich rolls
  • 1 red bell pepper, julienned
  • ½ red or brown onion, julienned
  • 1 avocado
  • 4 slices vegan pepper jack cheese
  • handful mixed greens
  • 1 ripe tomato, sliced
  • for mayo
    • ¼ c vegan mayonnaise
    • ½ jalapeño, seeds and ribs removed, minced
    • small handful cilantro, stems and leaves, chopped
    • juice of ½ lime


To make the aioli, mix the minced jalapeno, lime, and cilantro into the mayo and set aside.

Warm a pan or cast iron skillet at medium-high heat, then throw in canola oil, peppers, and onions. Toss until coated in oil, then cook for 7-10 minutes, allowing to blister on each side without too much stirring. You want them to get a little color as they soften, like they would on a flattop grill.

When you are ready to assemble, slice your sandwich roles lengthwise and slather with the mayo on both sides. On the bottom layer, lay down your onions and peppers, then greens, avocado, sliced tomato, and pepper jack. The idea here is to keep the fresh veggies in the middle to avoid wilting the lettuce.

If you have a panini grill, use high heat to get the bread crispy. Otherwise, you can grill the sandwich on a hot pan, using another pan or heavy plate on top to press it down. Voila! Add some vinegary hot sauce if you like, but the jalapeños and spicy cheese should have you covered. Enjoy!

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The best part about traveling is how easy it is to be opportunistic: walk into a hole-in-the-wall wine shop for a tasting, gorge on gelato, imbibe recklessly in fine wine, take a break for a cappuccino or three… Needless to say, I have a lot to share from this leg of the trip. Stay tuned for several photos of grub, scenic views, & foliage.

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Crowd Pleasers

Simple Crispy Fried Calamari

9th April 2015

Remember when I mentioned that I casually made some calamari as an appetizer to my Spicy Thai Seafood Soup? Well, here are the deets. I know what you’re thinking – is frying calamari really that casual? And honestly, it totally is. Frying is a technique that can seem intimidating, but once you do it a couple times, you’ll realize it’s as easy at sautéing, baking, or putting a piece of bread in the toaster. For reals.

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