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Andrew

Looking for some meatless meal suggestions!

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Andrew

My wife and I have decided we want to try to eliminate meat from our diets.  We've both experienced some bowel issues that we're pretty sure are related to eating meat at the very least, and perhaps animal products in general.  We both managed to maintain a vegetarian lifestyle for around 6 months, she was much better than me about it!  She was a vegetarian when we first met and was used to it.  The primary reason we stopped was out of laziness and lack of time.  I know those are both cop outs! But we both noticed marked improvements in bowel health and the way we felt generally. I was more of a pescatarian, and will probably end up going that way again. She continued to consume dairy, she doesn't like eggs or fish.

 

Clearly there are some other benefits to cutting out meat, like reduced carbon footprint.  But also, I've held the belief for a while now that more people would be vegetarians if they had to kill their own food.  I'm personally okay with going fishing for food.  It looks a little bizarre to some when I apologize and thank the fish I catch, but it doesn't feel okay to me to do anything else.  This includes using the entire fish for food and fertilizer.  The fact that I've felt the need to explain myself just now says a lot, and I may end up not fishing all together in the future.

 

A lot of folks here are vegan from what I can tell.  What suggestions do you have for quick and easy meals?  I enjoy cooking and taking the time to slowly and methodically prepare a dish.  But some days I'm exhausted and hungry, and just want some sustenance!

 

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Juni

This is  pretty quick and easy. Add broccoli for some extra veg-this is surprisingly rich and flavorful, and you can leave out the cayenne if you don't like spicy dishes. Make it in a big bowl, it makes a lot. It's vegan and also whole foods, plant based, with no added fat but what's in the peanut butter.  
https://www.forksoverknives.com/recipes/chilled-peanut-noodles-recipe/

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Andrew

@Juni

Hey that looks tasty! I enjoy spicy food quite a bit.  I've got to go by the store before a potluck at my sister's house tomorrow and will pick up the stuff to give it a try.

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Kater Potater

Greek salad is one of the fastest and tastiest vegetarian meals I can think of. Cucumber, tomato, red onion, feta cheese , olives and a bit of seasoning like salt, pepper and Italian herbs. If you want something even faster you can look into the Tasty Bites packaged options like Madras Lentils or Chana Masala. This with a bit of packaged rice or quinoa has been a good go-to , no time to cook but still healthy and vegetarian meal. The Chana Masala is vegan. Another option might be a tray of pre-cut veggies and hummus.

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Andrew

@Kater Potater

I think my first try was foiled by overcomplicating things.  Ease and speed of preparation will be a key to lasting success I think.  My 6 month trial of it was during a period where I had more time to prepare meals.  Lentil empanadas, eggplant lasagna, stuff like that.  A meal that takes an hour to prepare and cook was my undoing!

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NickF

For lunch a great meal can be vegan burritos or burrito bowl. If I’m making a burrito, I try and locate the healthiest organic ingredients. Refried black beans, homemade or a healthy ready made guacamole, and whole wheat tortillas. You can add whatever plant based ingredients that you enjoy. I’m whole food vegan so I find using onion, some sliced cherry tomatoes, and whatever other veggies I want to add make it tasty. It’s pretty simple, just heat everything up and eat. Lots of phytonutrients for your health and no animals harmed.

 

I’d like to mention a couple of websites you might find helpful. This one has a link to plant based recipes https://nutritionstudies.org/recipes/  It also has a lot of useful information. Another worthwhile website is  https://nutritionfacts.org/  which has a lot of “bite-sized” videos on the benefits of plant-based eating. I particularly like this latter website because the information is evidence based. 🙂

 

 

 

 

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KurtisM

Andrew, when I get back home in a few days I'll share some meal youtube vids with you.

I'll make it pretty diverse too. I have a whole playlist of stuff.

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DianeHB

For really quick and easy meals, I recommend checking out The Seven-Day Rescue Diet by Rip Esselstyn (maybe there are YouTube videos explaining the meal prep methods). What I found helpful was instructions for having ingredients on hand/prepped and putting together a meal in 5-10 minutes. Basically you choose a starch, a protein (beans, tempeh, tofu, veggie burger), other vegetables you like, and condiments/dressings/sauces/nuts and seeds, and put them together in a bowl or on a sandwich or inside a burrito. Meals can be different every time depending on what you choose. 

 

He also has a meal planning web-based app (paid) that has whole foods plant-based recipes. I found this really helpful when I wanted to spend no more than 30 minutes cooking because they have a lot of simple recipes that take 10-30 minutes to put together. I could also do my meal planning on the way to the grocery store. 🙂 I stopped using it because I have more time now and want to actually use my vegan cookbooks instead of just look at the pretty pictures. 

 

There are other vegan recipes sites I like, but the above was what worked for me for healthy and fast meals. 

Edited by DianeHB
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Sarah

If you're looking for something truly quick, try pulse pasta. It's often made with a combination of a grain (usually rice) and some sort of pulse (lentils, chickpeas, etc.). So you've got your protein and your carbs right there, pretty much. Just add some veggies and you've got a pretty balanced meal. (It sounds weird, I know, but I've found I actually like it more than the gluten-free pastas I'd been eating. The flavour is slightly different, but not in a bad way!) Here's a post that'll give you an idea of some of what's out there: 10 Pulse Pastas You Need In Your Life

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Andrew

Thanks for all these ideas and resources! 

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Leela Corman

I found that learning to cook some Middle Eastern/Mediterranean dishes added hugely to my vegetarian repertoire. I really love Claudia Roden's "Middle Eastern Food", which is kind of the ur-text of Middle Eastern cookbooks. She's a great writer and it's full of stories, as well as family recipes and ones from all over the region, very broadly interpreted. I have my eye on those Yotam Ottolenghi/Sami Tamimi vegetarian cookbooks next; I think the veggie one is called Plenty. It looks amazing. There are tons of others!

 

In general, learning to use aromatic spices is really good for expanding the options and making everything taste amazing. Get some cool cookbooks, go to a good grocery store that has a lot of good spices and other ingredients that look interesting (like, I got a jar of date syrup at the Arabic market and discovered that it's great in coffee and on waffles), and have some fun!

 

I am not vegan, but I don't eat cheese anymore (sob). I love all the new vegan cheeses out there. They've gotten really good. Nothing will ever replace a fabulously stinky Chaumes but I can't keep the vegan stuff in the house long.

 

Do you have a good farmer's market in your town? Seasonal locally grown fruits and vegetables are so beautiful and exciting.

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Andrew

@Leela Corman

It's easy to forget there are entire cuisines out there centered around not eating meat. Indian comes to mind as well!  There are quite a few farmers markets around where I live.  My work hours are pretty weird so I usually miss most of them, but that can be accommodated for.  There are also plenty of ethnic grocery stores nearby as well.  I haven't been to any of the middle eastern stores, but I've visited most of the east and southeast Asian groceries in town.  Awesome selections of fruits and vegetables!

Powell's City of Books is a popular bookstore in town, honestly I've never spent much time in the cooking section there.  But I should give it a look this week when I pop by to get a few things off my reading list.

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Miizle

I second @Sarah, pulse pasta is great, the ones sold here are either red lentil or a mix of beans and lentils (they have a chickpea one, too, but i find it chalky). You don't need to worry about the sauce so much when you already get so much from the pasta itself! Last night i had the quickest cheat dinners ever and it was actually pretty tasty, too (they were all leftovers, too so didn't even need to cook :P) : pulse pasta and steamed carrots + broccoflower mixed in some garlic hummus, had with olives and gherkins.
Avocado makes a nice base for a raw pasta sauce, too.

 

 

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Andrew

Just a quick check in.  Tuesday was my second full day of being meat free.  I picked up stuff to prep ahead of time, since I was off work yesterday I had a good opportunity to chop and dice veggies for quick use through the week.  I was about to buy hummus, then remembered it's super easy to make a whole bunch of it!  I did grab some junk type stuff that can be tossed in the microwave real fast.  A few baker potatoes, some veggie burgers, things like that.  But I'm hoping that the prep I did yesterday pays dividends during the week when my stash of chips and salsa runs dry!

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KurtisM

Ok Andrew here's a nice list of some Vegan food vids on my playlist:

Spicy Almond Buddha Bowl by Liv B
Cheap Vegan Meals by Liv B (Pub-style Burger & Fries, Dragon Noodles, Maple BBQ Cauliflower Wings)
Vegan After-School Snacks by Liv B (Avocado Waffle Grilled Cheese, Dessert Hummus, Vegan Queso w/ Salsa)
Healthy Comfort Foods by Liv B (Berries & Cream Spelt Pancakes, Avocado Fries, Pop tarts)
Cheap Vegan Meals by Caitlin Shoemaker (Fluffy Cinnamon Chia Waffle, Mac and Cheeze, Burgers and Fries)
Cheap Lazy Vegan Dinner by Cheap Lazy Vegan (Meal Prepped Pasta)


Vegan Pad Thai by Cheap Lazy Vegan

Vegan Hack (5 Ingredient) Recipes by Cheap Lazy Vegan (Black Bean Quesadilla, Pizza, Cold Pasta w/ Avocado Dressing)
More 5 Ingredient Recipes by Sweet Potato Soul (Indonesian Stuffed Sweet Potato, Hearty Lentil Soup, Teriyaki)
Travel Snacks by Sweet Potato Soul (Almond Butter Rice Crispies, Spicy Roasted Pumpkin Seeds, Sticky Nut Bars)
Banana Nice Cream by Fully Raw Kristina
Sweet Potato Snacks by Ela Gale

Blueberry Orange Breakfast Smoothie, Simple & Quick Spicy Noodle Soup, Brown Rice & Eggplant Dish- by Thrivingonplants


Cinnamon Streusel Ice Cream Bars by Feasting on Fruit

Vegan Greens and Beans by The Whole Food Plant-based Cooking Show
Some Dressings (Raw Vegan & Fat Free) by Erin Volentine

Tempeh Tacos by Simnett Nutrition
A Ginormous Salad that I have No Name for & a Tasty Tahini-Curry Dressing by Simnett Nutrition

Let me know if you try any of these!

Edited by KurtisM
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Andrew

@KurtisM That's awesome! CheapLazyVegan really speaks to me 😄

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