On the other hand, if you like to spend time in the kitchen, making plant based meals can be as simple or elaborate as you wish. Check out some recipes on-line, or pick up a plant based cookbook, there are hundreds to choose from. Really easy recipes I get come from The New McDougall Cookbook, The Everyday Happy Herbivore, and Forks over Knives, three really good books with simple, easy recipes in them.
Go over the recipes you and your family might like and make your list for the week. Believe me, a list will save you time and money. I find when I don't do this, I'm running to the store 2-3 times a week, spending much more money each time I go in. Plan what you need for the week, make a list and stick to it.
Keep your meals simple. When I first started eating this way, I felt I needed to make 3-4 different dishes for dinner because a typical SAD dinner was meat, potatoes and vegetables. This is way too much work!! A complete, healthy dinner now is still a starch, (some kind of whole-grain like brown rice, quinoa, whole-wheat pasta), vegetables, beans, and lots of different spices. It really is very easy and delicious.
Of course as I mentioned before, when you have time, make large quantities of whole-grains and beans. Divide them up into ziplock freezer bags, freeze them until you need them during the week. Cut up vegetables in large amounts so you can grab a bag out of the refrigerator ready to go for fast dinners during the week. When you are making dinner, maybe make some extra for lunch during the week, or have the dish another night during the week when you are really rushed. It just takes a little time and planning, but it's well worth the effort!!
Here's a simple, easy recipe to make that everybody loves:
1 16 oz can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 32 oz can whole tomatoes, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 onion, chopped
1/2 c chopped celery
freshly ground pepper to taste
1/2 pound whole-wheat elbow macaroni
3 medium tomatoes, chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, chopped
Swiss chard, (stalks removed), sliced into 1/4 inch pieces (I use a bunch of chard, you can use as much as you like)
- Place the kidney beans, canned tomatoes, garlic, onion celery and pepper in a large saucepan. Cook over low heat for 30 minutes.
- Cook elbow macaroni in boiling water until just tender. Add the pasta to the bean and tomato mixture.
- Add the fresh tomatoes, Swiss chard, and jalapeno pepper. Heat through thoroughly.
- Serve with hot-pepper flakes or hot sauce to taste if desired.
NOTE: The bean-tomato mixture may be cooked ahead and refrigerated. After cooking the pasta, reheat the bean-tomato mixture and proceed as directed.
Try something new this weekend....check out all the recipes available to you on-line. Let me know if you try something and really like it.....I love new recipes!!