The McDougall Newsletter
June 2014
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 Volume 13 Issue 6

Featured Recipes

Chef A.J. Before

Chef AJ, the author of UNPROCESSED, has followed a plant-based diet for more than 36 years. She is the creator and co-producer of Healthy Taste of LA, and is honored that Dr. McDougall will be the keynote speaker this November. She is grateful to Mary and Dr. McDougall for giving her big break in the plant based world at their Celebrity Chef Weekend in 2009. She is proud to say that her IQ is higher than her cholesterol. For more information on Chef AJ please go to or

In 1977, while a freshman at the University of Pennsylvania intending to become a veterinarian, Chef AJ instead became a vegetarian. In 1987 she received her first book of Dr. McDougall's as a gift, and it only took her 25 years to implement his teachings!!! For 35 years, Chef AJ was,as Dr. McDougall so affectionately calls,"A FAT VEGAN". In 2003 she gave up refined sugars and flours, and was still fat. In 2008 she gave up salt and refined oils, and was still fat. In wasn't until 2012 that things began to change. By taking Dr. McDougall's warning about "the fat you eat is the fat you wear" seriously, Chef AJ stopped eating nuts and nut butters, opting instead for potatoes, and effortlessly, and deliciously, lost 20 pounds in 5 months. Over the next year and a half she eventually gave up all the other added fats such as avocados, seeds and tahini, and started eating WHOLE grains, and lost another 30 pounds. These delicious recipes are from her upcoming book and reflect her new way of eating and cooking. She continues to follow the teachings in Dr. McDougall's Program for Maximum Weight Loss and uses the book as required reading in her Ultimate Weight Loss Program. Her only regret is that she did not read that book 20 years ago.

Pumpkin Raisin Muffins

While many think of pumpkin as a seasonal food, canned pumpkin is available all year round. On days when you don't have time to cook oatmeal, you can enjoy these moist, delicious muffins for breakfast.

2 large, very ripe bananas
½ cup nondairy milk
1 15 ounce can pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
½ cup date paste (recipe below)
2 tablespoons ground flax seeds
1 tablespoon Pumpkin Pie Spice
1 tablespoon Alcohol-free Vanilla
1 cup raisins
3 cups gluten-free oats

Prearation: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a food processor fitted with the "S" blade, process bananas and nondairy milk until smooth. Add pumpkin, date paste, flax seeds, extract, and spice and continue processing until smooth and creamy. Transfer to a large bowl and stir in the oats and raisins. Spoon an equal amount of batter into a muffin tin lined with cupcake liners or silicone baking cups. You need to fill each muffin liner with about ½ cup of batter as these do not rise. A retractable ice cream scoop works well. Bake 45 minutes.

  Pumpkin Raisin Muffins

Summer Watermelon Salad

The most difficult thing about this ever so refreshing salad is trying not to eat the whole thing!

Fresh Mint, chopped
Lime juice and zest

Preparation: Cube and seed the watermelon and cucumber. I really don't measure but I would estimate I probably use about twice as much watermelon as cucumber, the ratio of cucumber to watermelon is really up to you. Whether you peel and seed the cucumber is up to you. Add fresh mint and lime, to taste. Chill before serving. After a few days, if I still have any salad leftover, I put it in the blender with ice for a refreshing slushy.

  Summer Watermelon Salad

Red Lentil Chili


One pound of red lentils
8 cups of water
2 14.5 ounce cans of salt-free tomatoes, fire roasted preferred
1 6 ounce can of salt-free tomato paste
10 ounces of chopped onion (approximately one large)
One pound of red bell pepper, (approximately 2 large)
3 ounces of dates (approximately 12 Deglet Noor)
8 cloves of garlic, finely minced
4 tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
1½ tablespoons Parsley Flakes
1½ tablespoons Oregano
1½ tablespoons Salt-free Chili Powder
2 teaspoons SMOKED paprika
½ teaspoon chipotle powder (or more to taste)
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (or more to taste)


Blend the dates, tomatoes, red bell peppers and garlic in a blender and blend until smooth. Place all remaining ingredients in an electric pressure cooker and cook on high for 10 minutes. Alternatively, place all ingredients in a slow cooker and cook on low for 6-8 hours.

For a $50 discount on the Instant Pot go to and use the code AJ. This will only work on the company's website, not on Amazon.

  Red Lentil Chili

Enchilada Strata

Instead of rolling each enchilada individually, you can make this , delicious, hearty colorful casserole in less time than it takes to make individual enchiladas.

Ingredients: (Sauce)
1 red onion, chopped (approximately 10 ounces)
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 28 ounce can salt free tomatoes, fire roasted preferred
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 teaspoon roasted cumin
3 tablespoons arrowroot powder
1½ cups water

Preparation: Place the onion, garlic and liquid in a pot and cook 8-10 minutes until soft. Stir in tomato and spices and cook on low heat for 15 minutes. Add the arrowroot powder to a small amount of cold water and dissolve, then add to sauce and stir until thickened.

  Enchilada Strata
Ingredients: (Filling)
4 cups of salt-free salsa
2½ pounds of sweet potatoes, mashed
1 pound bag frozen roasted corn, defrosted
One 4 ounce can of mild green chiles
2 15 ounce cans of salt-free black beans, rinsed and drained (or 3 cups of cooked beans)
2 16 ounce bags of frozen kale, defrosted with all of the liquid squeezed out.
12 corn tortillas
Topping: sliced olives and scallions (optional)

Preparation: Peel sweet potatoes and boil or steam until soft. Process in a food processor fitted with the "S" blade until smooth and creamy. Place into a large bowl and stir in the salsa, corn, beans and kale. Mix well. I recommend using food service gloves so that everything gets fully incorporated.

Assembly: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Cover the bottom of a large baking dish with half of the enchilada sauce. A lasagna pan (10"x14" or 11"x15") is recommended. Place 6 tortillas on top of the enchilada sauce and then gently and evenly place the sweet potato mixture on top of the tortillas. Top with the remaining 6 tortillas. Pour the remaining sauce over the tortillas and sprinkle sliced olives, if using, over the top. Bake for 30 minutes. Sprinkle with scallions and serve.

Yummy Sauce

When I stopped eating nuts a few years ago, I started replacing all of the recipes in my book UNPROCESSED
with cannelini beans which created a similar texture and mouth feel without all the fat.


1 15 ounce can of cannelini beans, rinsed and drained (or 1½ cups of cooked beans)
zest from one lemon plus 1/4 cup lemon juice
1 clove of garlic
2 tablespoons salt free mustard (I use Westbrae stoneground mustard)
3/4 ounce pitted dates (about 3 Deglet Noor)

Preparation: Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. If you make this in a high-powered blender you can make the sauce warm. This is delicious served over veggies and brown rice.

  Yummy Sauce

The World's Healthiest Apple Pie

Most pie is made from white sugar, white flour and butter, but this one is made from gluten free oats, seeds and fruit. You could even eat it for breakfast, and I do, I do!!!

Ingredients for Crust:
1¼ cups gluten free oats
¼ cup ground flax seeds
1 teaspoon apple pie spice or cinnamon
4 ounces of sulfite free dried apples
8 ounces of pitted dates
1 tablespoon alcohol free vanilla extract

Preparation: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a high-powered blender grind oats and seeds. Transfer to a food processor fitted with the "S" blade. Add the spice and dried apples and process until they are finely ground. Add dates, a few at a time, until mixture start to stick together and you can clump it together easily into a ball. Then add vanilla and briefly process again. Evenly press mixture into a 9" springform pan.

3 pounds of apples, before peeling
1 cup of date paste (recipe below)
4 tablespoons of lemon juice (add zest if using fresh)
  The World's Healthiest Apple Pie

4 tablespoons chia seeds
1 tablespoon alcohol free vanilla
1 tablespoon apple pie spice or cinnamon
¼ cup unsweetened coconut

Preparation: In a small bowl, mix together the chia seeds and lemon juice. Set aside. Peel apples and finely chop. Stir in date paste, spice and vanilla. Add chia seed/lemon juice mixture and mix well. Pour evenly over crust. Sprinkle with coconut. Bake at 350 degrees for 50 -55 minutes until coconut starts to brown.

Delicious served hot, warm, cold or at room temperature, with or without pear whipped cream.

Chef's Note: You can also warm this in a dehydrator for 6-8 hours for a raw apple pie.

Pear Whipped Cream


1 -25 ounce jar of pears in their own juice (when drained, this will yield about a pound of jarred pears or about 6 pear halves)
1 Tablespoon Alcohol Free Vanilla
1/4 cup WHITE chia seeds (black ones will turn your whipped cream a yucky color)

Preparation: Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. This will thicken nicely as it chills.

Date Paste

Make sure you always have some on hand to create a healthy dessert in no time.

1 pound of pitted dates
1 cup of liquid (water, unsweetened non-dairy milk, unsweetened juice)

Preparation: Soak dates in liquid overnight or for several hours until much of the liquid is absorbed. In food processor fitted with the "S" blade, process dates and liquid until completely smooth. Store date paste in the refrigerator.

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