Vegan Grilled Pesto Sandwich

As a vegan, I get asked how I survive not eating cheese, yogurt, milk (insert other dairy-based product here) six to eight times a day.

The answer is easy: I carry around nutritional yeast and flax seed, don’t you?

No? Oh.

Well the question that always follows is: What food do you miss the most now that you’re vegan?

Honestly, the only thing I truly yearn for is Velveeta cheese. I keep trying substitutes that claim they can pull off that awesome fake plastic-y taste, but nothing achieves the processed cheese flavor quite like the bright yellow block of Velveeta itself.

That being said, the one thing I truly love that I haven’t been able to accurately replicate is a grilled cheese sandwich.

I’ve spent many nights dreaming of that gooey yellow cheese pouring out of the side of warm toasted bread. That was, of course, until I made my first grilled pesto sandwich.

Now I’m not saying this grilled pesto sandwich is a vegan version of grilled cheese. Actually, there isn’t even anything cheesy about it. But, believe me, as a grilled cheese lover, this warm toasted sandwich will make you forget that processed cheese the second you bite into it.

The best part is it’s so versatile, you can add any sort of vegetable you like and feel good knowing you aren’t consuming plastic!

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Use whatever bread you love. I picked sourdough.

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Next you’ll need some spinach, avocado and onion.

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You’ll also need some pesto. If you’re feeling ambitious, you can make your own. A lot of pesto has cheese in it, but Whole Foods carries this brand which is cheese-free and delicious.

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After you saute the mushrooms, assemble the sandwich.

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Grill both sides and there you have it. Whip this up for your girlfriend and you’ll be the best lesbian ever in no time.

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Ingredients:

-2 slices of bread

-2 tablespoons of pesto

-A small handful of spinach

-3 to 4 slices of avocado

-A few slices of onion

-A small handful of mushrooms, sliced

-A few jalepenos, diced

-Olive oil

-Saute the mushrooms and jalepenos in vegan-friendly butter (I use Earth Balance or Smart Balance margarine) over medium heat for a few minutes until cooked

-While the mushrooms cook, spread pesto on the inside of two slices of bread

-Add the spinach, onions, avocado and cooked mushrooms to one side of the bread. Cover with the opposite piece

-Add a little olive oil to a skillet over medium heat and place sandwich in the pan. I like to add a weight (like another heavy pan or bowl) on top to press the sandwich down. Cook for a few minutes until the bread is brown then flip.

What do you think?

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