NFL Star Tom Brady Shares 3 Favorite Vegan Recipes From TB12 Diet Plan
Whether you're a Patriots fan or a Bucs believer, the name Tom Brady conjures admiration for a career that brought his old team six rings and may just be what the TB (note that the town and the man have the same initials) team needs to score some bling of their own. Now, with him warming up his down in Tampa, the last thing you'd ever do is call TB "old."
In fact as the NFL player with the most seniority at QB, his 42 years on the planet seem to bring him renewed energy and discipline at every passing birthday. So what better time to reissue his first book, The TB12 Method, about how to eat, train, and recover for optimal performance. We have 3 of the new recipes from this re-issued edition, to make tonight as a way of "being like Brady." The obvious question is: Was he born this way, or is his mostly plant-based diet and Terminator-like discipline the reason for his longevity and success? And does he still have what it takes to do it again, for Tampa?
Brady is known as much for his supermodel wife (Giselle) and his magazine covers (GQ, Men's Health, Esquire), as he is for launching his and business s line of TB12 products, including Protect, his latest supplements with immune-boosting powers with his business partner and longtime body coach Alex Guerrero. So when we heard that his latest launch was a new and improved version of his TB12 Method book, complete with brand new recipes we decided to jump at the chance to publish them here first, so you can share them with all your Tampa friends and get ready for some football.
So whether you love him or just love to watch him play, you can make Brady's plant-based recipes and buy the book, The TB12 Method: How to Do What You Love, Better and For Longer, which has new supplementary material on how to stay at the top of your game, through the methods he believes in.
In the latest edition, Brady further details "the revolutionary training, conditioning, and wellness system that has kept him atop the NFL at an age when most players are deep into retirement," the writeup on Amazon explains. "Brady—along with the expert Body Coaches at TB12, the performance lifestyle brand he co-founded in 2013 with Alex Guerrero—explain the principles and philosophies of pliability, a paradigm-shifting fitness concept that focuses on a more natural, healthier way of exercising, training, and living. Filled with lessons from Brady’s own training regimen, The TB12 Method provides step-by-step guidance on howto develop and maintain one’s own peak performance while dramatically decreasing injury risks." Sign us up. But first, his plant-based recipes. Make these in time for the season opener, on September 10th, or for Brady's first planned start on the 13th against the Saints. Enjoy!
TB12 Sweet Potato Toast
Makes: 2 portions
Total Time: About 30 minutes
No – it’s not really toasted, but it is an easy-to-make, delicious, and fiber-rich substitute. One large sweet potato makes about 2 portions of two “toasts” but feel free to make more than you need to serve as a quick snack later!
- 1 large organic sweet potato, very well washed
- 1 tablespoon avocado oil
- Pinch of Himalayan sea salt
- Preheat oven to 400°F
- Cut pointy tips off of sweet potatoes, then cut lengthwise into ¼-1/2 inch slices.
- Brush lightly with oil and season with salt, then place flat on a baking sheet lined with unbleached parchment paper.
- Bake for about 15 minutes, then flip and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes.
- Time may vary based on the thickness of your “toast,” but they are ready once they are tender and golden in color.
- Serve right away, or once cooled store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
- When ready to use, just heat in the toaster or toaster oven until crisp, and top with your favorite ingredients.
Top “toast” with hummus, cucumber slices, sliced scallion, dill, and a few crunchy chickpeas.
TB12 Caramelized Broccoli with Smoky Romesco Sauce
Not only is broccoli one of the most nutrient-rich green vegetables, it’s also a family favorite in the Brady household. The caramelizing process brings out the broccoli’s natural sweetness, which is accentuated by the sharp acidity and rich creaminess of the romesco sauce.
Takes: 30 minutes
Caramelized Broccoli with Smoky Romesco Sauce
Makes: 2-4 Servings
- 1 large (or 2 small) broccoli
- 1 tablespoon organic avocado oil
- Himalayan salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon chopped chives or tarragon leaves
- 1 (16oz) jar fire-roasted red peppers, drained (water reserved)
- 1/2 cup toasted almonds
- 1/4 cup organic extra virgin olive oil
- 1 ½ tablespoon sherry vinegar
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon chipotle in adobo, or more to taste (optional)
- ½ teaspoon Himalayan salt
Preparing the Broccoli
- Bring a large pot of water to boil and cut the large broccoli into quarters (or cut small broccoli into halves), and trim away thick-cut ends.
- Prepare a large bowl of ice water, then add broccoli to boiling water and cook for about 2 minutes.
- Immediately plunge into ice water for 1 minute (or until cooled) then strain in a colander. This can be done up to one day in advance. While the broccoli is draining, make the sauce.
Making the Romesco Sauce
- Place almonds, garlic, and salt in a food processor and pulse until reduced to fine crumbs.
- Set aside 1-2 tablespoons of crumbs and leave the rest in the food processor.
- Add remaining ingredients plus 2 tablespoons of reserved pepper water into the food processor and blend until very smooth, adding slightly more liquid if needed.
- Adjust seasoning to taste. This sauce can also be made up to one day in advance.
Finishing the Dish
- Once the sauce is prepared and the broccoli has drained, bring a large skillet to medium-high heat.
- Pat the broccoli very dry with a clean kitchen towel, then brush cut sides with avocado oil and lightly season.
- Add the rest of the oil to the hot skillet and swirl to coat the bottom, then add broccoli flat side down and press down lightly with kitchen tongs to help evenly caramelize.
- Continue cooking for 4-5 minutes, then flip broccoli over and continue to cook for about 1 more minute on the opposite side to warm through, then place in a large bowl and sprinkle with dry almond crumbs & chopped herbs.
- Place 2-3 tablespoons of sauce on two plates and top with broccoli, then sprinkle any remaining almond crumbs and herbs over top and serve immediately.
This is perfect for a light vegetarian meal for 2 served with a simple green salad. You can also split this into 4 plates and add grilled fish, chicken, or shrimp and additional sauce. Note: if you’re lucky enough to have any sauce leftover you can store it in the refrigerator for up to a week or freeze it and store it for up to a month. If the liquid separates (this is normal) just stir before serving.
Caesar salads are undoubtedly one of the most popular and frequently-ordered salads in the U.S. but sadly have strayed from their humble (and somewhat healthy) beginnings. With this recipe, we remove the high-calorie dairy and add the mean green powerhouse of kale, packed with vitamin C, calcium, potassium, and fiber. We also replace the croutons with crunchy roasted chickpeas. In a pinch, store-bought baked chickpeas will do, but the homemade version is so much tastier. This makes for a perfect, light, plant-based meal – but for a more substantial dish feel free to top with avocado, chicken, or fish.
Total Time: 20 minutes without chickpeas, 40 minutes with chickpeas
TB12 Kale Caesar Salad
Makes: 2 generous servings
Kale Caesar Salad
- 3 cups baby kale
- 2 cups baby romaine
- 1 cup shaved Brussels sprouts
- 2 red radishes, thinly sliced
- ½ cup crunchy chickpeas (recipe below) or substitute store-bought baked chickpeas
- 1 tablespoon coarsely chopped chives
- 1 tablespoon toasted pine nuts or hemp seeds
- 1 ½ cups of cooked chickpeas or 1 (15oz) can, drained and rinsed
- 1 tablespoon organic avocado oil
- ¼ teaspoon Himalayan salt
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ cup raw cashews
- 1/3 cup water, plus more as needed
- 2 tablespoons organic extra virgin olive oil
- 1 lemon, juice + zest (about 2 tablespoons juice)
- 1 ½ teaspoon grainy Dijon mustard
- 1-2 garlic cloves
- 1 ½ teaspoon capers, rinsed
- ½ teaspoon Himalayan salt
- 1/2 teaspoon maple syrup
Roasting Crunchy Chickpeas
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Dry the chickpeas very well with a clean kitchen towel or paper towels, since any moisture will keep them from getting crisp.
- Pour dried chickpeas into a bowl, drizzle with oil, and season with spices & salt.
- Spread evenly on a baking sheet lined with unbleached parchment paper.
- Put in the oven and bake for about 20-25 minutes, turning and shaking the pan about halfway through.
- Chickpeas will be roasted when they are lightly browned and firm on the outside but still creamy on the inside. While the chickpeas are roasting, proceed to make the dressing and prepare the salad.
Making the Dressing
- Combine all dressing ingredients in a high-speed blender and blend until very smooth, scraping down the sides as needed. This recipe will make about half a cup of dressing. Note that the dressing can be made a day or two in advance and will keep for up to 5 days in the refrigerator.
Preparing the Salad
- In a large bowl, mix together kale, romaine, Brussels sprouts, most of the chickpeas (once ready), radish, herbs, and nuts or seeds.
- Top with about 1/3 cup of dressing, a few turns of freshly ground black pepper, a pinch of salt, and toss until well-combined.
- Split salad into 2 bowls and garnish with the remaining chickpeas, nuts or seeds, and the remaining radishes. Add additional seasoning and dressing to taste.
NOTE: (The crunchy chickpea recipe can be made a day or two in advance and even doubled, since leftovers make a great snack and can be stored at room temperature in a glass jar or airtight container. If chickpeas lose their crunchiness, simply toast them for about 5 minutes (but for the best flavor and texture we like to eat them right away)!