Hungry vegetarian needing to lose weight

I'm interested in healthy recipes for weight loss. I'm a vegetarian; eggs and dairy are o.k.


  • Rockmama1111
    Rockmama1111 Posts: 264 Member
    edited December 2022
    I don’t really have a recipe, but I make taco filling out of lentils. I simmer them with onions, garlic, and taco seasonings. (I use a mix of stuff but you could get a packet too.) Today I used it plus cheese and a high fiber wrap to make a chimichanga in my air fryer. Pretty tasty with salsa and sour cream!

    I’ve also been loving chia pudding for breakfast. It’s 1/2 cup almond milk, 2 T chia seeds, and a teaspoon or two of honey or maple syrup, refrigerated overnight. In the morning I add fruit and maybe some toasted nuts or coconut. Lots of variations there.

    I also LOVE chickpea pasta. It’s so much tastier than whole wheat pasta! I simmer a can of diced tomatoes with garlic and basil, add the pasta, and load it up with Parmesan. One of my favorites.
  • neanderthin
    neanderthin Posts: 9,561 Member
    edited December 2022
    With your situation quality protein and omega 3's would be the foundation of healthy in my opinion and you have the quality amino acids covered in eggs and dairy and I'd probably take a well respected omega 3 supplement if I was a vegetarian. After that whole foods would trump refined foods and crucial for a healthy diet, again in my opinion. Again healthy to me is a higher protein diet which is not what the plant based community likes to recommend, but think that is shortsighted and convenient considering it's more difficult in that lifestyle. Personally I would listen to the people here that are vegetarian that also consume a higher protein diet Like AnnPT77 who generally have more knowledge in that discipline. Cheers
  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 30,372 Member
    Warning: I don't like faux meats or protein powders/bars. I don't use them. I don't think there's anything wrong with them, but I just don't personally find them tasty/satisfying, so don't much use them. I also don't do recipes: I just cook. So what's below are not quantity-specific, but they're forgiving. If any of them sound good and you freak out if no recipe (as some of my friends do), say so, and I can maybe figure out exact quantities from last time I made them . . . but I'm not willing to do that for the whole list. Wing it: It'll be fine.

    Ezekiel tortilla with mustard, thin sliced smoked tofu, calorie-efficient cheese, thin-sliced onion, heated to melt the cheese, then topped with raw sauerkraut, as a fold-over type sandwich. For the cheese, I like part-skim mozzarella, Cabot light cheddar, reduced fat Jarlsberg, or light Babybel.

    Edamame/soy fettuccine with a homemade chile/peanut sauce. Sauce is chile paste, defatted peanut butter powder (or almond powder), rice vinegar mixed together (can add other seasonings, like ginger, minced garlic, chopped green onions, whatever). Mix with stir-fried or microwaved veggies (frozen is fine as a shortcut). Note: Edamame pasta is chewy, IME, not pasta-textured. Really high in protein, and I like it in thin shapes (spaghetti or fettuccine) not blocky ones, in pseudo-Asian preps like this.

    Tostada: Corn tortilla, heated in dry frying pan to soften, topped with refried beans (from a can, usually), useful veggies on hand (chopped tomatoes, peppers, onions, cooked frozen sweet corn, avocado slices, whatever), some calorie-efficient cheese, put in oven to heat through and melt cheese, then topped with a blop of plain nonfat Greek yogurt, salsa, maybe some avocado mash. (For this, I'd usually use queso fresco or a light pre-shredded "Mexican Mix" cheese).

    Plain tempeh, sliced into sticks, browned in frying pan with a little mushroom powder added after flipping, then thin cheese slices over that, eaten with Sriracha or ketchup (I love a good ketchup, personally, but if it's not your jam, use any hot sauce, BBQ sauce, mustard, whatever. It's OK to eat just as is, or put in a sandwich.

    Sweet potato and black bean soft tacos, with some kind of white cheese (cotija? queso fresco?) for those who eat dairy. A little tomatillo salsa won't hurt anything.

    Broiler-crisped cubes of extra-firm tofu with stir-fried veggies and sturdy Asian-type mushrooms (shiitake, for example), in a miso sauce.

    Red lentil pasta with sauce that has lentils, ground up dried mushrooms, tomatoes, elephant (or regular) garlic (and plenty of it), onions, and basil or oregano. Or, use a calorie-efficient purchased spaghetti sauce, add the dried mushroom powder and lentils. (Canned lentils are fine.) I like chickpea pasta OK, but red lentil has - to me - a better texture, and a bit more protein.

    Mixed greens salad with roasted veggies, cherry tomatoes, feta cheese, balsamic vinegar, maybe some pepitas. (This probably isn't enough total protein for a meal, so add a protein-efficient side.)

    Black bean and sweet potato soft tacos in Ezekiel tortilla (microwaved or frozen sweet potato works, plus canned beans). Sweet corn is good in there if you have the calories. Queso fresco or other calorie-efficient cheese, maybe; dollop of plain Greek yogurt.)

    Seitan in a veggie stir-fry with any calorie-efficient sauce. I like combos of chili sauce, rice wine vinegar, and/or miso.

    Oatmeal with berries and Greek yogurt for breakfast. Add a bit of blackstrap molasses (meaningful micros!) if you like it a little more sweet, plus cinnamon or whatever; walnuts, hemp seed, or flax seed is nice if you have the calories. I use frozen berries, thawed/warmed.

    Lighter, quicker breakfast: Ezekiel pita with peanut butter, lowfat or nonfat kefir (or Greek yogurt and berries, but the kefir is quicker).

    My most common "big protein sources" to make a good contribution to a meal are tofu, tempeh, seitan, red lentil pasta, lowfat cottage cheese, Greek yogurt. Then, I add sides I enjoy that also have at least some protein.

    Learn about condiments or flavoring elements that add a bit of protein. Little bits from condiments or sides add up through the day. Some I use often are peanut butter (or almond butter) powder, nutritional yeast, live-culture miso.

    There are also snacks with protein, like reduced fat cheese sticks, hard-boiled eggs (make deviled eggs with a bit of plain Greek yogurt in place of mayo), dry-roasted soybeans, crispy chickpeas or broad beans. At home, another is plain Greek yogurt mixed with chocolate peanut butter powder, then with frozen berries or other frozen fruit (still frozen).

    Note that you can blend tofu (especially soft/silken tofu) into many things without much changing the flavor or texture. Here, I'm talking about things like Winter squash soup (can also blend white beans into that) or other soups, lasagna, mac'n'cheese (put smashed Winter squash in that to reduce the high-cal cheese load, or pureed cooked cauliflower, plus some plain Greek yogurt to up the protein). You can blend surprisingly much tofu into mashed avocado, season, and end up with something that still tastes like guacamole.

    Truth in advertising: I mostly cut'n'pasted the above from other posts, because "what to eat as a vegetarian/vegan on reduced calories" is sort of a FAQ.

    I'm a cr*p friend in MFP on that side of things, but you're welcome to send me a friend request, OP, if you want to see what I eat (and I've been really boring lately, besides). My diary is open to friends, and I accept any friend request that doesn't look scammy/creeper-ish to me. Since I mostly cook from scratch, my diary often looks like a list of ingredients, but I do answer PM questions or questions on my timeline about how I cooked/combined them or that sort of thing.

    Warning: I'm in maintenance now, so I have a higher calorie allowance, and I don't log every day any more . . . but I have diary out there back to July 2015 when I started on MFP, on lower calories. The first month or so may not be nutritionally super, as I was still trying to dial in lowered calorie nutrition, but it should be solid after that, and I was losing weight into early 2016, faster at first then slowly.

    Best wishes!