Gone are the days when people associated vegetarian cuisine with bowls of plain iceberg lettuce, mushy veggie bean burgers, and lackluster pasta dishes. Nowadays, opting for vegetarian recipes can be a tastier affair, rivaling traditional meat-based options.
Healthline reports that heart disease is the leading cause of death, annually claiming the lives of approximately 635,260 people in the United States. And with a growing body of evidence that links meat intake to heart disease now is the best time to make some tasty, plant-based changes to your diet.
Despite all the claims to the contrary, vegetarian meals are not much more expensive (if at all) than your traditional meat-based dishes. Therefore, to keep it simple, we’ve broken down the recipes into 5 categories. These include: breakfast, smoothie meal replacement, lunch, dinner, and dessert:
Best Vegetarian Recipes for Breakfast: The Breakfast Taco
Breakfast, arguably the most important meal of the day, is usually characterized by stacks of pancakes, eggs, sausage, and a hearty glass of orange juice. But Sarah Bond, the inspiration behind the food nutrition blog LiveEatLearn, has come up with one of the best vegetarian breakfast taco recipes that’s sure to spice up your morning:
- 1 15-oz (425 g) can chickpeas, drained
- 1 tbsp. (15 mL) olive oil
- 1 tbsp. (15 mL) tamari
- 2 tsp. (10 mL) Sriracha
- 1 tsp. (5 mL) maple syrup
- 1/2 tsp. (2 mL) smoked paprika
- 1/4 tsp. (1 mL) each salt and pepper
- 1 cup (150 g) cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 tbsp. (15 mL) olive oil
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 12.3 oz (350 g) package firm silken tofu
- 1/4 cup (59 mL) nutritional yeast
- 2 tbsp. (30 g) plain hummus
- 1/4 tsp. (1 mL) turmeric
- Pinch of salt and pepper
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Dry your chickpeas, and then, use the “bacon” chickpeas ingredients to season your chickpeas. Once they are properly seasoned, spread them out, along with the roasted tomatoes, on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Then, place the baking sheet into the oven for 20 minutes.
- Place your tofu ingredients in a nonstick skillet. Over medium heat, cook tofu until it reaches a light brown color.
- When your “bacon” chickpeas, roasted tomatoes, and scrambled tofu are all baked and sizzled to perfection, assemble them into a soft tortilla of your choice and enjoy.
A Healthy Vegetarian Snack: The Blueberry Smoothie
Smoothies are the perfect options to quickly appease your appetite. Culinary experts at Minimalist Baker have come up with the perfect recipe to get some healthy vitamins flowing through your system.
- 1/2 cup (64 g) of cottage cheese or low-fat yogurt
- 3 tbsp. (44 mL) vanilla protein powder
- 1/2 cup (64 g) frozen blueberries
- 1/4-1/2 tsp. (1 – 2 mL) maple extract
- 1/4 tsp. (1 mL) vanilla extract
- 2 tsp. (9 mL) flaxseed meal
- 10-15 ice cubes
- 1/4 (32 g) cup water
- Blend all ingredients together, using a blender. Feel free to adjust the consistency by adding more ice if it is too runny, or more water to thin it out.
Best Vegetarian Recipe for Lunch: The Runner’s Sandwich
When it’s noon and you are so hungry that you could eat piles of paper on your desk, you need a recipe that is quick and easy to get you through the day. The “Runner’s Sandwich” is one of the best vegetarian recipes for lunch, packed with carbs, proteins, and healthy fats. It’s also a quick and nourishing way to supply you with all the energy you need to survive the rest of the day.
- 4 slices of bread
- ½ ball mozzarella
- ¼ cup (32 g) sun-dried tomatoes in oil
- 2 tbsp. (30 mL)olives
- 2 tsp. (9 mL) capers
- ¼ cup (32 g) fresh basil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Roughly chop your cheese, tomatoes, olives, and capers. Then, combine them into a mixing bowl.
- Take your pieces of bread and then place them in the oven at medium heat for approximately ten minutes. When it is done toasting, take the mixture from Step 1 and spread the mix on your toasted pieces of bread.
- Place your sandwich on a heated pan, and then place a lid on it to distribute the heat evenly. Following that, take off the lid and use a spatula to compress the sandwich — getting it nice and crispy. This should take approximately 3- 4 minutes. The final product should look like a pressed handful of deliciousness ready to be devoured.
Best Vegetarian Recipe for Dinner: Spicy Kale and Coconut Fried Rice
Vegetarian dinners do not have to be a hassle. They can be as simple as 1, 2, 3. Here’s one of the best vegetarian dinner recipes for enjoying a quiet night in with a partner, or for hosting a dinner party. Both can be spiced up with the addition of this Spicy Kale and Coconut Fried Rice recipe, adapted from COOKIE+kate.
- 2 tbsp. (30 mL) coconut oil
- 2 eggs
- 2 big cloves garlic, pressed or minced
- ¾ cup (96 g) chopped green onions
- ¼ tsp. (1 mL) fine sea salt
- 1 medium bunch kale (preferably Lacinato but curly green is good, too), ribs removed and leaves chopped
- ¾ cup (96 g) large, unsweetened coconut flakes
- 2 cups (300 g) cooked and chilled brown rice
- 2 tsp. (9 mL) reduced-sodium tamari or soy sauce
- 2 tsp. (9 mL)chili garlic sauce or Sriracha
- 1 lime, halved
- Fresh cilantro, for garnish
- Heat a large cast-iron skillet and coat with a teaspoon of oil. Drop in the eggs and lightly scramble them before adding your garlic, green onions, and salt. Heat at medium-high for at least 1–2 minutes.
- Pour coconut flakes and rice into the pan. Cook at medium-high heat for 3 minutes, or until the rice has reached a reasonable texture and consistency. For added flavor, add tamari, chili garlic sauce, and the juice of about half a lime.
- Serve your completed recipe.
Dessert: Strawberry Cobbler
This sweet Strawberry Cobbler recipe by vegetarian times is a perfect way to highlight the versatility and deliciousness of vegetarian meals.
- 6 cups (900 g) of fresh strawberries
- 3/4 cup (96 g) sugar
- 1/2 cup (64 g) & 2 tbsp. (30 mL) of flour, divided
- 1 tbsp (14 mL) lemon juice
- 1/8 tsp (0.6 mL) baking powder
- 1/8 tsp (0.6 mL) baking soda
- Add 1/8 tsp (0.6 mL) salt
- 3 1/2 tbsps vegetable shortening
- Preheat the oven to 375 °F and coat a baking dish with cooking spray.
- Then, combine the strawberries, ½ cup sugar, about 2 tbsps of flour, and lemon juice to a bowl. Transfer the mixture to the baking dish.
- Mix the remaining ½ cup flour, sugar, and baking powder in a separate bowl, and add shortening until the mixture has a crumbly texture. and spread it over your strawberry concoction. Bake for 20–30 minutes and let it stand 10 minutes before serving.
Bonus Idea: Beyond Meat Recipes
I’m sure you’ll love these recipes when you try them out. However, you may be a former omnivore (or carnivore). If you still crave the taste of animal protein, then try some of these Beyond Meat recipes instead.