HIGH PROTEIN VEGAN MEAL PREP | @avantgardevegan by Gaz Oakley
How to Plan Vegan Meals
Vegan meals are meals that don't contain any meat or animal products, including eggs and dairy. Vegan meals don’t have to be a hassle, especially if you plan them out in advance. For an entire week of delicious vegan meals, plan ahead so that you have meals that are both easy to make and nutritious. There are a wide variety of tasty meals that you can prepare for all meals and occasions.
Eat oatmeal with fruit.Prepare the oatmeal the night before for a quick meal or make it fresh in the morning. Top the oatmeal with fresh berries, sliced apples, or raisins. If you want, add a splash of almond or rice milk or stir in some brown sugar.
- Both oatmeal and granola are high in fiber, which will keep you full until your next meal.
- Oatmeal can be made on the stove or in the microwave. If you want it to be ready in the morning, try making overnight oats with soy or almond milk.
Eat avocado and toast in the morning.This is an easy, fast breakfast meal that gives you protein and healthy fats to start the day. Just toast some whole grain bread. Add slices of avocado on top. Mash the avocado down with a fork and enjoy!
- If desired, squirt some lemon juice on top or sprinkle salt and chili powder on it.
Prepare a tofu scramble instead of eggs in the morning.Tofu scrambles are a great, filling option for breakfast. Heat oil in a pan. Add crumbled or chopped tofu. Once it starts turning brown, remove it from the pan. If desired, sauté vegetables like peppers or tomatoes for 3-4 minutes. Add the tofu back to the pan and cook for another 2 minutes.
- This tastes great with toast or salsa.
Eat vegan cereal with a non-dairy milk for a quick breakfast.Look on the cereal aisle for vegan cereals or granola. Pour yourself a bowl in the morning, and add non-dairy milk, such as rice milk, almond milk, or soy milk. If desired, top with berries, nuts, or raisins.
- Some popular brands of vegan cereal include Ezekiel 4:9, Reese’s Coco Puffs, and Grape Nuts. Many popular cereal brands are vegan, just read the list of ingredients to be sure.
- Fortified cereals can offer extra iron, calcium, and vitamins to help make sure you get the nutrients you need.
Make a meatless sandwich.Sandwiches are simple and easy to pack for lunch. You can make them ahead and store them in the fridge for the upcoming week. For example, you might try a sandwich with:
- Hummus and caramelized onions
- Carrots, spinach, and beets
- Curried tempeh
- Tofu and guacamole
Toss a salad with a variety of veggies and dressing.Use kale, spinach, or lettuce as your base. Add vegetables like carrots, beets, tomatoes, or avocado. Toss with a dairy-free salad dressing like balsamic vinaigrette or olive oil and pesto.
- A kale salad with walnuts on top gives you enough protein to energize your day.
- Add croutons or pieces of vegan cheese for extra taste.
- You can make the salad in the morning before work or school, but don't add the dressing until you are ready to eat it. Keep it in a separate container.
Try a vegetable soup.Make homemade soup in a crockpot at the beginning of the week and heat it up in a microwave. Alternatively, buy canned soup and heat it up on the stove. Just make sure the soup doesn't use bouillon or uses a vegan bouillon. Either way, there are many delicious soups to choose from, such as:
- Black bean soup
- Vegan tomato bisque
- Chickpea soup
- White bean chili
- Butternut squash soup
Stuff a sweet potato for a wholesome lunch at home.Prick the sweet potato several times with a fork and microwave it on high for 7-9 minutes. Add sautéed kale, black beans, vegan cheese, or vegan chilli on top. You can even add a dressing like hummus or cashew cream.
- To pack this lunch for work, heat up the sweet potato the night before. Put your toppings in separate containers and assemble the sweet potato at work.
Create a rice or quinoa bowl.A rice bowl is a meal that is eaten all in 1 dish. There’s a layer of rice, quinoa, or another grain on the bottom. On top, you can add delicious foods and sauces for a tasty, easy treat. For fast meal prep, make the rice or quinoa ahead of time. Reheat it in a pan or microwave when desired.
- For a great autumn bowl, roast butternut squash in a 400 °F (204 °C) oven for 35-45 minutes. Add it to a bowl of rice and cover it in mole sauce, which you can buy premade at grocery store.
- For a filling, warm meal, fill a bowl with rice and smother it in lentil curry.
- For a bowl with more variety, fry slices of tofu in hot oil until each side is crispy. Place it on a bed of quinoa. Add sautéed spinach, mushrooms, and onions to the side. If desired, add sweet chili sauce on top and stir together.
Replace traditional grilled meats with vegan substitutes.Tofu, tempeh, seitan, and portobello mushrooms taste great when seared on the grill. Black bean or lentil burgers are also a great option for summer barbeques. You can you’re your own or buy them pre-prepared if you want to skip the prep work.
- Marinate the tofu or mushroom for up to 30 minutes with barbeque sauce or Italian dressing. Cook the food for 3-4 minutes before turning it over. Cook it another 4 minutes and remove from the grill.
- Vegetable kabobs are a great vegan grill recipe. Cut up peppers, mushrooms, onions, and tofu into large chunks. Stick them on kabob sticks and brush them with a marinade, such as mustard or balsamic vinegar. Cook them for 10 minutes, turning them over halfway through.
Add a serving of potatoes, quinoa, rice, or pasta to keep you full.Fiber and starch keep you full longer. These carbohydrates help form the basis of a vegan meal. Good foods include potatoes, sweet potatoes, whole grain bread or pasta, and brown rice.
- Starchy foods can usually be prepared in large batches in advanced. Keep the food in the fridge for up to 3 days until you are ready to eat them.
- These foods can be used for a wide variety of purposes. For example, if you make a large batch of rice at the beginning of the week, you can use it to make fried rice, eat it with curry, or add it to a burrito during the week.
Try a lentil curry for a nutritious and well-rounded meal.Lentils are a good source of iron, calcium, and protein, which are necessary for a healthy vegan diet. Add other nutritious ingredients, like sweet potatoes, peppers, zucchini, peas, or tofu.
- For a basic lentil curry, chop and cook 1 onion in oil until translucent. Add curry paste and cook for another 2 minutes. Pour in 16 ounces (450 g) water, 14 ounces (400 g) coconut milk, and 10 ounces (280 g) lentils. Simmer for 5 minutes before adding your vegetables of choice. Let it cook for another 15 minutes.
Trying Other Meals
Make vegan dips for parties.Dips are always a showstopper at parties. There are many delicious vegan versions of your favorite dips, including bean dip, spinach and artichoke dip, or even queso!
- An easy vegan dip is guacamole. Take 2 or more avocados. Slice them and remove the seeds before scooping out the avocado. Mash the avocado in a bowl with a fork. Add tomatoes, chili powder, or lime juice if desired.
- Baby carrots, sliced peppers, and raw broccoli are great for dipping. You can also use chips, wholegrain crackers, or bread.
Snack on dried fruits.Dried fruits, like raisins, prunes, and figs, are a great source of iron and calcium. They also make for an easy snack that go anywhere with you. Try dried pineapple, strawberries, or oranges for more variety.
- A serving of dried fruit is roughly ½ cup (30 g). This counts as 1 of your 5 servings of fruit a day.
Try egg and dairy free baking recipes for a delicious end to your day.You don’t need eggs, dairy, and butter to make great desserts. While vegan baking can take some practice, there are many great recipes to choose from.
Video: How to Make a Vegan Grocery List & Meal Planning
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