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Meat Free Diets

AmyMummyTummy2AmyMummyTummy2 Posts: 20Member Member Posts: 20Member Member
Due to recent health complications my GP has told me by body can no longer tolerate me eating any meat or meat products, therefore for the past few weeks I've been following a vegetarian diet. I love having a varied balanced diet and was never a big meat eater anyway.
Just looking for some inspiration in the kitchen! Any good recipes you have found or a good website to have a look through?
How long have you been meat free for?
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Replies

  • MaltedTeaMaltedTea Posts: 193Member, Premium Member Posts: 193Member, Premium Member
    What does a "vegetarian diet" mean for you? I ask as there are different types of vegetarians.

    If it matters I used to be vegan years ago (zero animal products of any kind) but am now more "plant-based," prefer not to eat red meat or pork and have other picky-peculiar eating habits that may have nothing to do with animal welfare or climate change lol
  • estherdragonbatestherdragonbat Posts: 5,208Member Member Posts: 5,208Member Member
    I'm an ovo-lacto vegetarian. Have been for 28 years.

    The Vegetarian Times website has a lot of recipes online. So does The Spruce Eats. Or Google Isa Chandra Moskowitz.

    For a number of years, I've been working my way through the 1,000 Vegan Recipes cookbook. Not that I won't repeat a recipe or flip around, but every week, when I'm planning out what to cook on Thursdays (my major cooking day), I know that one thing I'm making is whatever's "next". This week, it's kabocha squash stuffed with brown rice, black beans, and mango.

    My diary is open; if you see a dish in there you'd like, drop me a PM. (I think you might need to send a friend request first; sometimes the site won't let you see messages from non-friends).
    edited February 14
  • LenGrayLenGray Posts: 455Member Member Posts: 455Member Member
    Hullo! I've been a vegetarian for a little over a year now and love it :) I'm ovo-lacto, but I eat a lot of vegan and plant-based dishes.

    I tend to have a lot of 'hands-off' cooking, like soups, stews, and simple grain bowls. Lately, I've been really into pumpkin mac n'cheese, which takes 15~ish minutes (a huge bonus since I get home late) and is comforting goodness with all the cold weather. I also have been really enjoying chickpea+avocado salad sandwiches with broth-based bean soups recently.
  • bathsheba_cbathsheba_c Posts: 1,874Member Member Posts: 1,874Member Member
    I’m not vegetarian, but I’ve been reducing my meat consumption by a lot. What helped me more than specific recipes was knowing what a balanced meat-free diet looks like. I had trouble getting enough protein without meat and enough fiber in general. I solved that by increasing my consumption of pulses (only one portion a day; too much too soon causes major gas) and *cooked* vegetables. Cheese and nuts are good sources of protein, but you have to limit how much you eat because they are high in fat and calories. The pulses need to be combined with grains to create complete proteins (not at the same meal necessarily; the same day is good enough). If you choose whole grains, you are less likely to overeat them, plus you get fiber, which slows how quickly your body absorbs the carbohydrates.
  • SaraKim17SaraKim17 Posts: 1,072Member Member Posts: 1,072Member Member
    @LenGray, would you happen to have recipes for the pumpkin mac and cheese and the chick pea and avocado sandwich? Thanks! 😃
  • AmyMummyTummy2AmyMummyTummy2 Posts: 20Member Member Posts: 20Member Member
    Thanks for your replies everyone.
    @estherdragonbat I'll definitely look into those websites!
    I used grains, lentils, pulses, beans and things in my meals quite often, I'm just trying to get to know what goes best together and add new ingredients into dishes I havent tried before.
  • RCPVRCPV Posts: 381Member Member Posts: 381Member Member
    SaraKim17 wrote: »
    @LenGray, would you happen to have recipes for the pumpkin mac and cheese and the chick pea and avocado sandwich? Thanks! 😃

    I second that - especially the pumpkin mac and cheese, please! :)
  • cwolfman13cwolfman13 Posts: 37,559Member Member Posts: 37,559Member Member
  • lemurcat2lemurcat2 Posts: 4,475Member Member Posts: 4,475Member Member
    I would go to your library and try out some different vegetarian and vegan cookbooks. There are lots of great ones these days.

    I'd also check out different websites. One I really like is 101cookbooks -- you can pick a season or ingredient and get inspired.
  • gremloBBPTgremloBBPT Posts: 48Member Member Posts: 48Member Member
    Pasta with white beans and a leafy green (I usually use spinach or kale) is one of my fav combos. I also use parmesan cheese, but I'm not sure if cheese is out for you.
  • kshama2001kshama2001 Posts: 21,176Member Member Posts: 21,176Member Member
    lemurcat2 wrote: »
    I would go to your library and try out some different vegetarian and vegan cookbooks. There are lots of great ones these days.

    I'd also check out different websites. One I really like is 101cookbooks -- you can pick a season or ingredient and get inspired.

    Yes, my library system has over 400 each Vegetarian and Vegan cookbooks.
  • LenGrayLenGray Posts: 455Member Member Posts: 455Member Member
    Sure thing, @SaraKim17 and @RCPV :)

    I got the pumpkin mac n' cheese recipe from Minimalist Baker, but I'm posting it here since I shortened the cook time a lot.

    Pumpkin Mac n' Cheese

    Ingredients
    1 can pumpkin
    1 Tbsp oil
    1 Tbsp minced garlic
    2 Tbsp cornstarch
    1.25 cups milk (I used almond)
    0.5 tsp salt
    2 Tbsp ground sage
    4 Tbsp nutritional yeast
    3 Tbsp parmesan cheese
    .25 tsp allspice
    .25 tsp red pepper flakes
    10 ounces noodles

    Directions
    Boil noodles according to directions. Heat oil over medium heat and saute garlic. Add pumpkin, milk, and cornstarch, stirring until combined. Add seasonings and stir constantly, until thickened, 3-5 minutes. To serve, add cooked pasta and toss to combine.

    *For protein, I like to add great northern beans or green peas, which you can add when you add the spices.

    I don't alter the chickpea+avocado sandwich, except to occasionally add celery, and the link is here: https://www.twopeasandtheirpod.com/smashed-chickpea-avocado-salad-sandwich/#wprm-recipe-container-41806
  • SaraKim17SaraKim17 Posts: 1,072Member Member Posts: 1,072Member Member
    @LenGray, thank you! 💕
  • RCPVRCPV Posts: 381Member Member Posts: 381Member Member
    @LenGray, Thank you so much! Just copied the mac n cheese to my recipe file. :)
  • CILLAJ8CILLAJ8 Posts: 82Member Member Posts: 82Member Member
    I’ve been a vegetarian for 2.5 years now. Check out Minimalist Baker website for great recipes. I don’t think I ever made something I didn’t like from there. Cookie and Kate, Cooking Classy. Search vegetarian recipes on Pinterest as well. Typical weekday lunches are veggie wraps with hummus that we make at home. So good. My diary is open if you’d like to send me a friend request. 😊
  • ReenieHJReenieHJ Posts: 926Member Member Posts: 926Member Member
    SaraKim17 wrote: »
    @LenGray, thank you! 💕

    Thanks from me too!
    Can that be turned vegan by subbing the parmesan or leaving it out entirely?
  • kshama2001kshama2001 Posts: 21,176Member Member Posts: 21,176Member Member
    ReenieHJ wrote: »
    SaraKim17 wrote: »
    @LenGray, thank you! 💕

    Thanks from me too!
    Can that be turned vegan by subbing the parmesan or leaving it out entirely?

    Yes, nutritional yeast is often used in place of Parmesan. I don't care for nutritional yeast myself, so you may wish to experiment.
    edited February 15
  • kshama2001kshama2001 Posts: 21,176Member Member Posts: 21,176Member Member
    LenGray wrote: »
    Hullo! I've been a vegetarian for a little over a year now and love it :) I'm ovo-lacto, but I eat a lot of vegan and plant-based dishes.

    I tend to have a lot of 'hands-off' cooking, like soups, stews, and simple grain bowls. Lately, I've been really into pumpkin mac n'cheese, which takes 15~ish minutes (a huge bonus since I get home late) and is comforting goodness with all the cold weather. I also have been really enjoying chickpea+avocado salad sandwiches with broth-based bean soups recently.

    Kripalu Cookbook has a much more labor intensive version of vegan mac and cheese. My mom grows butternut squash, so I usually make this every fall. It would be easier with pre-peeled and chopped squash. I tried it once with frozen squash and didn't care for it.

    I use ACV instead of the umeboshi vinegar but do not sub the miso or tahini. It doesn't taste like much going into the oven, but when it is done baking it was worth the effort.

    https://kripalu.org/resources/kripalu-recipe-squash-roni
  • VeggieMeg71VeggieMeg71 Posts: 74Member Member Posts: 74Member Member
    I've been ovo-lacto vegetarian for almost 30 years. I highly recommend Vegetarian Times. Their website is good, but I really enjoyed having a subscription to the magazine when I was a new vegetarian. Of course, 30 years ago we didn't have blogs and youtube to rely on! Someone else mentioned Minimalist Baker, and I second that recommendation. I also like Oh She Glows, The Chubby Vegetarian, and Oh My Veggies. If you would like to see my food diary, feel free to add me as a friend. There is a group called Happy Herbivores here on MFP you may want to join also.
  • katec418katec418 Posts: 6Member, Premium Member Posts: 6Member, Premium Member
    I just started shifting to a pescatarian diet due to health reasons. I still eat eggs and fish, but it’s low fat focused. It really does force you to be creative in the kitchen. Pinterest has become a great tool for me!
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