Viva La Vegan Happy Hour Party Recipes



Celebrate Happy Hour vegan-style with Big Blend Radio featuring wildlife conservation expert Adam M. Roberts “The Compassionate Conservationist,” and John Schlimm, author of ‘The Tipsy Vegan’, ‘Grilling Vegan Style’, ‘The Cheesy Vegan’ and ‘Moonshine.” Enjoy John’s delicious vegan party recipes below! Cheers!




The Sailor’s Spinach Dip
Popeye would be in love! You may think you know spinach dip, but wait until you get a mouthful of this one. This robust dip with its additional thicker, baked option will carry you and your guests through any occasion, from game night with the kids to poker night with your buddies, or sailing on the high seas in search of adventure.

1 cup raw, unsalted cashews
½ cup vegan vegetable stock
½ cup white rum, or 1 cup vegetable stock
1 pound frozen spinach, thawed, drained, and pressed between layers of paper towels to remove extra moisture
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon onion powder
¼ cup freshly squeezed lime juice
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Carrot and celery sticks, for serving
Vegan toast points, for serving
Small vegan rice crackers, for serving

In a dry cast-iron skillet, toss the cashews over medium-high heat until fragrant and lightly toasted. Transfer the cashews to a bowl, and pour in the vegetable stock and white rum. Let the cashews soak for ½ hour, to soften them for blending, then drain the cashews.

In a food processor, combine the spinach, garlic powder, onion powder, lime juice, and vinegar. Pulse for 30 to 40 seconds, then pour in the cashews and pulse until well blended. Taste carefully, and add salt and pepper to taste.

Serve with the carrot and celery sticks, toast points, and/or rice crackers.

For a thicker version, bake in a preheated 300°F oven for 10 to 15 minutes.


Excerpted from “The Cheesy Vegan: More Than 125 Plant-Based Recipes for Indulging in the World’s Ultimate Comfort Food”by John Schlimm. Copyright © 2013. Available from Da Capo Lifelong Books, an imprint of Perseus Books, LLC, a subsidiary of Hachette Book Group, Inc.


Italian Herb Burgers on Focaccia
Life doesn’t get much sweeter than a grill surrounded by good friends and laughter, and topped with these Italian-inspired focaccia burgers. Here, fresh mushrooms, red onion, bell pepper, garlic, basil, oregano, parsley, sundried tomatoes, and other ingredients belt out an opera of flavors we can all sink our teeth into.

1 (15-ounce) can kidney beans
1 to 2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats, as needed
½ cup all-purpose flour
¼ cup vegan egg substitute
½ cup roughly chopped white mushrooms
½ cup roughly chopped red onion
1 carrot, shredded
½ cup roughly chopped red bell pepper
4 cloves garlic, peeled and pressed
4 fresh basil leaves, chopped roughly
1 teaspoon dried oregano
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
¼ cup well-chopped sun-dried tomatoes
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon soy sauce
Vegan focaccia bread, for serving

Note: If you can’t find focaccia, grill up some vegan whole wheat pita bread instead and proceed.

In a food processor, combine all the ingredients, except the focaccia. Pulse until just coarsely chopped, adding more oatmeal as needed (start with 1 cup), until the mixture holds together when you make a patty.

Chill the mixture for an hour. Shape into patties about ½ inch thick and about 4 inches in diameter. Chill the patties on a plastic wrap–covered platter for at least 3 hours.

Heat a broiler and a grill to medium-high. Broil the patties about 5 inches from the heat source for 4 to 6 minutes, or until lightly browned (watch them closely, as times may vary), checking to make sure the ingredients are holding together well. Broiling first will help to prevent them from falling apart on the grill. Using a grilling screen if desired, transfer the patties to the heated grill and grill for 2 to 3 minutes, turning once.

Serve at once, with the focaccia bread.

YIELD: Varies, but enough for 3 to 4 people

Excerpted from “Grilling Vegan Style: 125 Fired-Up Recipes to Turn Every Bite into a Backyard BBQ” by John Schlimm. Copyright © 2012. Available from Da Capo Lifelong Books, an imprint of Perseus Books, LLC, a subsidiary of Hachette Book Group, Inc.

Margarita Sorbet Down the Hatch
Cool down with this icy scoop of tequila heaven while frolicking by the pool, the sea, or, oh hell, even the creek. Swimsuits optional, of course.

½ cup sugar
1 cup lime juice from about 8 limes, and the finely grated zest of the limes
3 cups freshly squeezed grapefruit juice
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup tequila

In a small saucepan, stir the sugar into the lime juice. Bring to a boil and stir until the sugar is completely dissolved. Let the mixture cook for a few minutes, then stir in the grapefruit juice, salt, and tequila. Chill the mixture and then freeze in an ice cream machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions.


Excerpted from “The Tipsy Vegan: 75 Boozy Recipes to Turn Every Bite into Happy Hour” by John Schlimm. Copyright © 2011. Available from Da Capo Lifelong Books, an imprint of Perseus Books, LLC, a subsidiary of Hachette Book Group, Inc.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: John Schlimm is an educator, artist, award-winning writer, and a member of one of the oldest and most historic brewing families in the U.S. (Straub Brewery). He is the author of the Christopher Award-winning memoir “Five Years in Heaven” and several boozy cookbooks such as “The Tipsy Vegan,”  “The Ultimate Beer Lover’s Cookbook,” “Grilling Vegan Style,” “The Cheesy Vegan”, and his newest release: “MOONSHINE: A Celebration of America’s Original Rebel Spirit.” Learn more at


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