Meet the healthy late-night snack. Grab a bunch of your favorite veggies, a skillet and sauté your way to midnight. Stovetop Veggie Sandwich shines thanks to a schmear of goat cheese and a touch of balsamic and lemon.
The best late-night snack
When hunger strikes, what do you normally do? Order takeout? Scrounge up a frozen pizza? Or pour a big bowl of your fav cereal? Sidenote: it's said that Millennials don't eat cereal with milk. Frankly, I blame myself for this decline since cereal in a Ziploc was the bribe snack of choice for my kids when they were little.
Sorry - forgot. You're STILL HUNGRY. If you're not too tired, there's a solution right in your veggie drawer (you do have a veggie drawer, right? That's still a thing?) This will be quick because YOU’RE HUNGRY.
make the best veggie sandwich
The key to making a great veggie sandwich is the perfect combo of veggies. You want a lot a bright happy color, right? Because there's nothing worse than gray vegetables. Yuck.
- red and yellow peppers,
- bright white onion,
- screaming red cherry tomatoes
- a big handful of baby spinach.
- And for a bit of hot and sweet, some peppadew peppers
Finally, it wouldn’t be a sandwich without some crusty bread. I love a good ciabatta roll because it toasts up well and the airy pockets hold all the good stuff.
veggie sandwich without bread
Shoot - you aren’t eating bread these days? No biggie! Wash a few big pieces of lettuce, spread them with goat cheese sprinkled with some salt and pepper, layer on some basil leaves and tuck those balsamic and lemon kissed veggies right inside. Roll the whole thing up and you’re good to go!
Steps to making a great veggie sandwich
- Heat your skillet to medium heat.
- TIP: if you use a stainless steel pan, then don’t go crazy with heating your pan too high. You’ll burn your vegetables and burned anything (except marshmallows or, once in a while, toast) is not a good thing.
- Add a swirl of oil and add your sliced onions and tomatoes giving them a nice head start. They need a little more time to caramelize.
- Toss in your red peppers and mushrooms for the next five minutes.
- At the last minute, add some minced garlic and a big handful of spinach. Sauté them very quickly with the rest of the veggies.
- Right at the end, squeeze some lemon and a nice drizzle of good balsamic over top.
You have a few options here:
- Toast your roll in the toaster
- Broil it in the oven after brushing it with a little olive oil
- No toasting
Lay a couple of pieces of basil on the top side of the bun.
Then put two healthy slices of goat cheese on top of the basil. My favorite goat cheese is Silver Goat from Trader Joe’s. It’s reasonably priced and has the best tang.
Season the goat cheese with a little salt and pepper
On the other half of the bun, place a heap of those lemon balsamic sautéed veggies. Whatever doesn’t fit, either eat them right now because they’re SO good OR, if you’re a planner, save them for tomorrow’s morning eggs.
That’s it, my friend. I could go on and on about other veggie options like asparagus, zucchini, eggplant or delicata squash. If you’ve got ‘em, use ‘em!
Your late-night snacking game has just been upped. You’re welcome.
For a crowd: Multiply the quantities needed by 2. Or make mini versions on slider buns for a party. Open-faced toasts with the goat cheese on top and a drizzle of olive oil would make the perfect party bite!
For a few: Double the veggies and have one for dinner and the other for the next day's lunch.
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Stovetop Veggie Sandwich
- 2 ciabatta roll, split, set aside
- 2 Tbsp oil, avocado, sunflower or olive
- ½ red or white onion, sliced thin
- ½ pint cherry tomatoes
- 1 each red and yellow peppers
- 2 portabello mushrooms
- 5 oz baby spinach, or ½ bag or container
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar, or a healthy glug - you might want more
- ½ lemon, juiced
- 2 oz goat cheese, or 3 slices/sandwich
- 6 fresh basil leaves
- In a large skillet over medium heat, heat oil until shimmering. Don't overheat the pan. You don't want to burn the vegetables.
- Add the onions and tomatoes. Saute for approximately 7-10 minutes until golden brown and tomatoes have softened a bit.
- To the veggie skillet, add the red peppers and portobellos and saute for an additional 5-6 minutes or so. You can go longer if you like your peppers softer.
- Right before serving add the garlic and the spinach and toss it all around for 1 minute.
- Squeeze the lemon (minus the seeds of course) and drizzle with the balsamic scraping up all the good stuff at the bottom of the pan.
- If your bun is especially doughy, remove a little of the inside of the top half of the bun. I'll leave it up to you what you do with it.
- Lay three basil leaves in the top half of one bun and top with half the goat cheese.
- On the bottom half of the bun, lay the vegetables. Close up the sandwich and repeat with the second sandwich. Happy late night!