Vegetarian Recipes for a Week Long Meal Plan

Vegetarian Recipes for a Week Long Meal PlanMany people believe that being a vegetarian means a limited menu. Those that are vegitarians know that this is not always the case, especially if you know where the good restaurants are and how to cook great vegetarian meals at home. Here is a weeks worth of dinner ideas for any vegetarian.

Monday: Quinoa Salad

End Monday on a good note with a nourishing quinoa salad! Follow this recipe:

  1. Cook 2 cups of red or confetti quinoa.
  2. Chill in the refrigerator until cool.
  3. Add one cup of cooked black beans
  4. Add one cup of cilantro
  5. Add ¼ cup of chiffonaded basil leaves (fresh)
  6. Add 1 large red onion (chopped)
  7. Add three large nectarines, sliced or chopped into bite-sized chunks
  8. Add olive oil and salt
  9. Use a balsamic dressing or a vinaigrette

Taco Tuesday: Taco Bake

Have taco Tuesday at home with this great vegetarian recipe!

  1. Peel and pit 4 large avocados. Use a fork to mash into chunks, you do not want them completely mashed.
  2. Add 6 ounces of fresh salsa. (Mild, medium, or hot, your preference)
  3. Add 1 onion, chopped,
  4. Add taco seasoning (Trader Joes has vegan seasoning)
  5. Add 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  6. Add ½ teaspoon coriander
  7. Use this filling to fill 12 crunchy taco shells
  8. Put in a baking pan and bake at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 8 minutes.
  9. Serve with sour cream

Wednesday: Vegetable Stir Fry:

In a greased non-stick sauce-pan add the following ingredients over medium/high heat.

  1. Red pepper sliced
  2. 1 Green pepper sliced
  3. 1 Orange pepper sliced (optional)
  4. 1 yellow onion chopped
  5. 4 cups broccoli
  6. 4 cups white mushrooms
  7. 1 can water chesnuts (optional)
  8. Put the lid on the pan and let cook over medium heat for 8 minutes.
  9. Meanwhile, cook 8 ounces of rice. This can be Uncle Ben’s 90 second rice, or if you prefer to make it yourself, feel free.
  10. Add 2 cups of no-cook teriyaki sauce to your vegetables.
  11. Serve vegetables over rice.

Thursday: Spinach, tomato, grilled cheese (on a bagel)

  1. Grill an everything bagel
  2. Add 2 pieces of cheddar cheese, let melt
  3. Add desired amount of spinach
  4. Add 2 slices of tomato
  5. Serve open faced or eat as a sandwich.

Friday: Tomato, basil, and Mozzarella Pizza

On a premade crust or flatbread, use a brush to paint on extra virgin olive oil. Then add thinly sliced tomatoes and mozeralla cheese, in equal parts to pizza. Place in oven and cook at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 7 minutes. Drizzle with balsamic dressing and enjoy!

Saturday: Buffalo Chick Pea Wraps

Cook 2 cups of chickpeas in ¼ cup of Franks hot sauce. Spread vegan mayo on large romain lettuce leafs. Add chick peas onto lettuce leafs. Drizzle apple cider vinegar over leafs. Add desired about of celery and onion to leaves. Sprinkle with salt and enjoy!

Sunday: Tomato & Artichoke Lentil Soup

Sunday is the day of rest, so don’t spend the day cooking in the kitchen. Simply add these ingredients to your crockpot, let it cook on low heat for 4-6 hours, and enjoy for dinner time!

  • 1 large yellow onion
  • 4cloves garlic
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil
  • 1 cup dried red lentils
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 bay leaf
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 cans fire roasted whole tomatoes
  • 1 can quartered artichoke hearts
  • ½ bunch Tuscan kale

Serve with Parmesan cheese and enjoy!

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Curry Roasted Cauliflower Recipe

Curry powder is a great way to spice up otherwise bland cauliflower. And roasting the cauliflower makes it more tender. So team up curry with roasting and you have a can’t-miss cauliflower dish. Here we’ve provided two recipes: one is non-vegan because it includes a bit of sugar to help cut “hotness” of curry and helps make the dish more child-friendly and the other is strictly vegan. Enjoy!

Curry Roasted Cauliflower Recipe

Recipe 1 (Non-vegan)

Ingredients:

1?4?cup olive oil

2 ?teaspoons curry powder

2 ?teaspoons sugar

1 ?teaspoon lemon juice

1?2?teaspoon salt

1?4?teaspoon black pepper

4 ?cups cauliflower florets

2 ?tablespoons slivered almonds

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 400°F.

Wash the cauliflower florets well to remove any possible pesticides, even if it is organic cauliflower. Set the florets aside on paper towels to drain.

Meanwhile, mix the first six ingredients--olive oil, curry powder, sugar, lemon juice, salt and pepper--in a small mixing bowl. If the florets are still quite wet, pat them dry. Place the cauliflower florets in a 13 x 9 inch glass baking dish, like one you would use to make lasagna. Next, pour the oil mixture over the florets and toss them gently until the cauliflower has turned a nice, light yellow from the curry powder.

Cover the baking pan with aluminum foil and bake for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, remove the cauliflower from the oven and stir in the almonds. Mix them in lightly.

Return the cauliflower to the oven, uncovered, and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes, just until the cauliflower is browned and the almonds are toasted.

Recipe 2 (Vegan)

Ingredients:

12 cups cauliflower florets (about 1 small head of cauliflower)

1 large onion, yellow or white

1 teaspoon coriander seeds

1 teaspoon cumin seeds

3/4 cup olive oil

1/2 cup red wine vinegar

3 1/2 teaspoons curry powder

1 tablespoon hot paprika

1 3/4 teaspoons sea salt

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 450°F.

Rinse the cauliflower florets well and drain them on paper towels. Pat them dry as necessary. Once the florets are dry, place them in large roasting pan.

Peel and quarter the onion and then pull the quarters apart into separate layers. Add the onion to the roasting pan with the cauliflower. Don’t worry about mixing them up for now.

Place the coriander and cumin seeds in small skillet and cook them over medium heat until they are slightly darkened, which should take about 5 minutes. After they are cooked, crush the seeds coarsely in a mortar with pestle and then place them in a medium-sized bowl. Next, whisk in the oil, vinegar, curry powder, paprika, and salt to create a well-mixed dressing.

Put the dressing over the cauliflower and onions and toss everything, until the cauliflower and onions are evenly coated with dressing. Spread vegetables in the pan evenly and sprinkle them on top with paper.

Roast the vegetables until they are tender, which should take about 35 minutes. Be sure to stir them occasionally to prevent one side from being overcooked. Once done, remove the cauliflower from the oven and place them in a large serving bowl. For an extra zing, sprinkle fresh, chopped cilantro on top of the cauliflower.

This recipe can be made 2 hours prior to serving. You can then either serve the cauliflower at room temperature or rewarm the dish in a 450°F oven for 10 minutes.

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Quick Vegetarian Dinners

Quick Vegetarian Dinners

If you cringe at the words “vegetarian dinner” it’s OK.  Unfortunately, that term brings to mind foods one might consider less than savory.  Well don’t worry, you aren’t going to be subjected of a meal consisting solely of carrots.  And there is also a big difference between vegetarian and vegan, the latter being no consumption of any animal products at all.  So in preparing a vegetarian meal, you can utilize ingredients like eggs, milk, and cheese which can do wonders for adding depth and flavor to foods without meat.  So here are a few options for quick and satisfying vegetarian dinners.

Mexican Mac and Cheese

This is a spicy and savory take on a dish that most people love, it makes a lot of food, and it is oh so tasty.  Start off with boxed or homemade macaroni and cheese then give it a south of the border kick.  After you have mixed your cooked pasta and cheese together, transport this mix to a large skillet and add in your choice of ingredients.  This dish is particularly delicious with tomatoes, black beans, corn, finely minced chili peppers, queso blanco, and a healthy dose of hot Mexican-style chili powder.

Pasta Arrabbiata

“Arrabbiata” is Italian for “angry”, and one can see how that accurately describes the kick you get from this dish.  Usually made with penne that perfectly catches the spicy sauce, pasta arrabbiata is an Italian classic that tends to be a crowdpleaser.  Not only is this dish packed with flavor, it is extremely easy to make as it consists of just 5 ingredients:  pasta, olive oil, garlic, tomatoes, and chilies.  After you have cooked and drained the pasta, you can make the sauce as easy or as complex as you like.  You have your choice of using fresh tomatoes put through a food mill/processor, or using ones from a can.  If you do use canned tomatoes, please use good quality San Marzano tomatoes as they are considered a standard for excellent sauces.  Sauté just a bit of garlic in the olive oil then add in very finely minced red chilies.  After the garlic is translucent and the chilies have softened a bit, add in the tomato puree or just squeeze in the canned San Marzanos with your hands.  Let the sauce cook until it has somewhat reduced and thickened, then just pour it over your pasta.  One quick note, fresh shredded Parmesan cheese is delicious on this.

Pizza Margherita

As almost everyone loves pizza, this versatile food offers a wide array of vegetarian options.  One of the most famous choices is the classic pizza margherita which is simplicity itself thus has a good chance of attracting even picky eaters.  Once more this is a meal that calls for just a few ingredients:  pizza crust, olive oil, sauce, sliced tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, and fresh basil.  This creates a mild but beautiful blend of flavors accented by the sweetness of the basil.  Just like the pasta arrabbiata, you can pull out all of the stops when making this pizza or use canned and prepackaged ingredients.  Please keep in mind there are several very high-quality options when it comes to ready-made crusts and jarred pizza sauces.

 

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Vegan Casserole

quinoa salad, vegetarian food

Veganism is more prevalent today than it ever was, and as such you likely already have a friend or two who eat the vegan way. As a definition, eating vegan means to omit all animal-related foods from the diet. This of course includes all meats and fish, but it also includes eggs and all dairy products, as well. There are also a few other lesser known food items that vegans don’t eat because they contain small amounts of animal products. These can range from marshmallows to some candies, most of which contain gelatin from animals.

For those of us who are not vegan, cooking for vegans can be difficult. Not only is it hard to always know what products are vegan and what products aren't, but cooking for vegans and making it taste good for everyone can be a real challenge!

To prepare for those times when your vegan friends come to visit, avoid the extra work and strain of making two meals, and have this fancy (but easy!) vegan Mexican casserole on hand. It's a dish you can freeze, and it only takes a while in the oven to become warm and tasty before a meal.

What You Will Need:

1 chopped onion
1 cup of quinoa
2 cloves minced garlic
1-2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1 - 28 ounce can of diced tomatoes
½ - 1 cups of water
1 Tbsp. tomato ketchup
1 teaspoon of oregano
1 teaspoon of cumin
½ teaspoon of chili powder
a pinch of salt and touch of ground pepper
1 - 19 ounce can of rinsed black beans
1 - 11 ounce can of corn
3 cups of fresh spinach

Instructions

Start by preheating your oven to 350 F, then heating your olive oil on medium in a pan on the stove. Add the garlic and onion and cook until the onion is almost translucent.

While onions are sautéing, get a casserole dish that is oven safe ready with the quinoa, tomatoes, water, ketchup and spices. Once onions are translucent, remove them along with the garlic and add to the casserole dish. Put on a cover, place in oven, and cook for roughly 30 minutes.

Remove the dish and add the beans, corn and a bit of water to moisten. Return casserole to oven and cook for another 30 minutes. Take out once more, and stir in the spinach.

At this point, you can freeze your casserole, possibly in portions, and take it out at any time for quick heating when your guests are coming. When serving, add cilantro, sour cream, cubed avocado and vegan cheese, if desired.

Remember, if you happen to be caught off guard by guests who are vegan eaters and need quick meal ideas for them, salads or pasta rarely fail. Make up a salad, or cook up some (egg-free) pasta along with some stir fried fresh vegetables that you have on hand, and voila! Other grains like brown rice and lentils also work, but remember, pasta is quick!