Looking for easy vegan meals

Mr K

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Hi, I’m a transitioning vegan from South Dakota— a very conservative state where there’s basically no vegans. In May, I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes which flipped my world upside down. Because of my Type 1 Diabetes, my heart health is affected immensely, and I’m in a higher risk group for cardiovascular disease, but luckily I discovered that a vegan diet can ultimately eliminate that risk.

My parents understand but don’t see eye-to-eye with me on veganism. As a result, I usually am left to cook my own meals. I’m an awful cook and all the recipes I can find are above my level. What are some easy (and cheap) anyone here likes?
 

Veganite

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Hello Mr. K, and welcome to the forum!

I could post dozens of videos from YouTube that I think are easy, but the best thing for you is to scout through them yourself. I have lots of YT sites that I like, but it really depends on what you like. There's some really easy recipes on there. However, because of your underlying health complications, I suggest a whole foods plant-based vegan diet. I use the word diet loosely, because veganism is more of a philosophy than a diet. Nonetheless, the whole foods, plant-based diet is the way for you, if you wish to "eliminate that risk", to quote you.

Here's a few recommended YT channels for you:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsudrjn6IxMFxIsgyA_HzSQ

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCh2CcI5FT661MGIrZCxNeTw

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuwi1gSKyqz28BVCc9qeuIA

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCkVtuE3WR0NhNnDiP5d_pAA

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC_U4GPaCE59IDIqAOsvQMgQ

Also, this is the guy to follow, if you wish to eliminate that risk (click watch on YouTube if the video link doesn't work):


EDIT: I might add that I am not a doctor or heathcare professional. I am making suggestions here. You should always check with a doctor before making such serious dietary changes, especially if you have such serious health issues already. You should discuss it with your doctor at the very least.

Best of luck!


*
 

Forest Nymph

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The cheapest simpler vegan meals usually involve pasta or beans and rice. Beans or lentils can be made Thai, Lebanese, Indian or Mexican style by changing a few simple ingredients like herbs, sauces and vegetables used. It can be a game of mix and match if you save money with big bags of rice and various smaller bags or cans of beans you can stock up on spices, oil and produce.

Pasta is more self explanatory, easily dressed with a nice jarred marinara and a generous sprinkle of nutritional yeast. If so inclined then you can add things like spinach, olives or a product like Gardein meatless balls.

I post this all over the forum, but seriously get a five pack of plain rice ramen, a jar of unsweetened peanut butter, your favorite hot sauce (Sriracha or Tapatio both work nicely), a container of soy sauce OR Braggs aminos, and a bag of lemons or limes (I prefer lime). Boil your ramen and drain, but retain a few tablespoons of your hot water. Add a big spoon or two of the peanut butter, a splash of soy sauce, the juice of half a lime, and hot sauce to taste. It's really good. It's really simple. It's also very affordable as a source of protein, iron, complex carbs and a bit of vitamin C.
 
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Mr K

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Cool. I’m a pasta person and that sounds really good thanks dude.
 

Kellyr

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Welcome - I agree. Even changing the description of what you're eating to your parents may shift them over to being more supportive, as well. There's a lot of negative stigma attached to the word "vegan", unfortunately. "Whole Foods, Plant-Based" seems to be the more acceptable term with a lot of people, and I think in part it's because there aren't ethics tied to it - it's strictly health-based.

But when looking for recipes, "vegan" has been around a much longer time than "whole foods, plant-based", so you'll likely find a lot more variety searching for vegan recipes than WFPB.

Regarding cooking - we all start as beginners at some point in our lives. But the earlier you start the better. :)

I posted a long list of suggestions that may be helpful in this thread: 1 week in @ i need help!

Finally, I would recommend you ask your doctor for a referral to a registered dietician - preferably one who advocates a vegan or whole-foods, plant-based approach. There are a lot of things to be considered nutritionally where Diabetes is concerned. I've never had it, so I don't know all the things you have to be mindful of. Simple carbs, I think, is one of those - and depending on that pasta you mentioned above, that can be a simple carb and could cause problems.

Remember that vegan does not automatically equate perfect health. There are lots of vegan junk foods out there that could create problems if you start relying on them... cookies, Doritos, beer, etc.

Good luck!
 
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Kellyr

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Oh, and also, YouTube is a fantastic resource when it comes down to cooking basics.

Don't know how to pit an avocado? What's dicing versus chopping? How do I peel and mince garlic? How do I know if a watermelon is fresh? What's blanching?

You can find answers and demonstrations to all of these things on YouTube.

Finally - sticking with actual recipes is really helpful, too - especially ones that have been tested. They already combine the right ingredients to help something taste really good, and they often take the guess-work out of how long to cook and bake things... ie: sauté the onion for 5 minutes or until it becomes translucent... or bake 45 minutes or until golden brown... that kind of stuff.

Trying to wing it on your own can be difficult, unless you're the type who likes experimenting.

Personally, I don't like to experiment unless it's using foods I already know will go well together and I already understand how to prep and cook them. I really, really do NOT like ruining food - it becomes a waste of time and money. Let the cookbook creators go through all that hassle. I'll use their final fool-proof recipe.
 

Wendy Diaz

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Wow, so sad to hear about this. It's really important that you show your parents all the documentaries you've probably already seen "What the Health" Forks over Knife" "Food Choices" etc...
Most importantly, the cheapest foods are also the whole foods plant based. Grains, beans, nuts, legumes, veggies...
Something that really helps is buying in bulk. So just get yourself a bunch of oats, rice, beans and stock up.
Here are a couple of super easy and delicious recipes I've made. Ill be posting more soon so if you don't want to miss out I suggest subscribing!
 

veganDreama

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Hello and Welcome.

Do you have a blender? I make curry soup by chopping up vegetables and blending them with a jar of mixed beans. That lasts me a few days.