hi guys! i've been vegan for about 5 months and i'm the type of person that will eat meals that i love until i get tired of them! i need some new lunch/dinner recipes that are super healthy and somewhat easy ish to make!
Some easy dishes I frequently eat that are affordable and nutritious are:
1) Sauteed spinach and garlic (could sub kale or add mushrooms) in olive oil, salt and pepper, with hummus slathered on two pieces vegan whole grain toast or sourdough toast, the sauteed veggies on top! Add crushed red pepper and/or the juice of 1/2 lemon if desired.
2) A "cheezy" sauce made of a roux of 1-2 tbsp each of flour and oil or Earth Balance, until it browns over medium heat, slowly whisk in 1 cup soy milk (great because of thickness), then whisk in 1/2 cup - 1 cup nutritional yeast (depending on how much you like nooch and how much you have) ...stir constantly so it doesn't stick until it begins to thicken ...you can season this with tumeric and whole grain mustard, or just use salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper or hot sauce, then serve over your favorite vegan noodles. Can add cooked broccoli for extra veggie power.
3) Plain rice ramen boiled in water just covering the noodle nest, with 1-2 tbsp of soy sauce...when noodles have softened, toss in a handful of fresh washed kale for one more minute. Can also add 1/2 a block cubed extra firm tofu for extra nutrition and taste. Keep the water as a soup base. Then serve in a bowl, seasoned with the juice of 1/2 lemon and togarashi Japanese seasoning to taste.
4) Plain rice ramen boiled in water THEN DRAINED except for about 1 tbsp of hot water - stir in 1-2 tbsp of peanut or almond butter, squeeze on the juice of 1/2 lemon or lime, season with soy sauce, tamari or liquid aminos to taste, then top off with Sriracha if desired.
5) Prepare a boxed flavored couscous from the rice aisle, and add dried mushrooms that have been hydrated with veggie broth. Serve with chickpeas flavored with a bit of olive oil and salt. Add fresh or dried herbs if desired.
6) Wash and boil 3-4 medium red potatoes until soft (30-45 minutes, bring to a boil, then simmer over medium low heat). Drain and serve with Earth Balance, or olive oil, salt, pepper and fresh parsley or dill. Top with canned vegetarian refried beans and avocado, or instead opt for chickpeas or kidney beans and chopped tomato (or drained canned diced tomato).
7) Mash a drained rinsed can of chickpeas with the flesh of one ripe avocado and the juice of one whole lemon or lime. Fold in fresh cilantro or dill, and/or scallions (green onions). Salt and pepper to taste. Serve on a sandwich and pair with canned vegetarian soup, or instead enjoy with fresh fruit, raw cut veggies, salted pumpkin or sunflower seeds, and/or vegan potato chips.
8) Toss spring mix, spinach leaves and/or hearts of romaine with 1/2 can of drained, rinsed kidney beans or chickpeas. Add in any cut veggies desired (i.e. celery bits, sprouts, tomato, shredded cabbage, carrots, or whatever you have) and add 1/2 block of braised tofu (you can actually buy already-braised tofu at some grocery stores, especially Whole Foods, Sprouts, local co-ops, and some Asian markets). Sprinkle in pumpkin or sunflower seeds, and top with your favorite vegan salad dressing. Enjoy with vegan crackers or toast.
9) Learn to make homemade seitan steaks from vital wheat gluten and pair homemade vegan mushroom gravy (search Pinterest for ones you like, there are different ones for different tastes). Serve with roasted root vegetables or mashed potatoes, or instead of using gravy, throw the seitan steaks on a sandwich with Vegenaise or Just Mayo and pickles (or whatever you'd want on a veggie burger or "fried chkn" sandwich).
10) Start making Buddha Bowls. Invest in bags of grains like different rices and quinoa, and keep some prepared on a weekly basis. Roast different vegetables, like squash and persimmon, or brussels sprouts and turnips, add in sauteed onion or garlic if you wish, and serve with different kinds of beans or baked/fried tofu chunks. Add any fresh herbs you like or greens of choice, and enjoy with a delicious homemade tahini dressing. Again, you can get different ideas for numerous Buddha Bowls on Pinterest.
Hi Jaimee! What do you like to eat? I love the "lemon red lentil soup" from Allrecipes (I can't post links). It's easy to make and a staple for me. And in general, if you're looking for easy, you can mix cooked lentils or chickpeas with full-fat coconut oil and either a spice blend or sauce (thai curry, say) and eat that with quinoa/rice and a salad. This gives you some flexibility because you can change the sauce or spice blend.
I've recently started a social media account where I try recipes from web bloggers and post them. You can find it at "kind canteen" on instagram. I only post about recipes that "turn out." If you're going to look at online bloggers for recipes, I find Vegan Richa's tend to be on point, as well as Budget Bytes' (her site is not fully vegan but contains many vegan recipes). Try her yellow split pea soup (you can make it in the slow cooker overnight, and it's healthy and tasty).
I find some simple substitutions can make old favourites vegan. Autumn veg stew with Herby dumplings, basically chop any root veg up into bite sized pieces, cook in veg stock. Add creamed cashews to make into a creamy dish. Make up herbed dumplings and either cook in more veg stock and add at end of cook in stew being careful not to boil the stew at this stage (cashews will seperate from stock if you do). Can add chickpeas, beans or even a handful of nuts such as cashews and allow them to soften in stew whilst dumplings cooking...
Tomato and red lentil soup. Chop onions, cook with fresh or dried thyme, add chopped tomatoes, fresh or tinned if necessary, add red lentils, water and cook till red lentils are very soft, liquidise, add basil and serve with sourdough or sauteed tofu chunks (for extra protein in dish)...
My favorite dish is a version of dhal I had when I went to Sri Lanka a few years ago and I ended up eating every day on the trip. I've tried to recreate it with a bunch of recipes, but this one is the closest one I found to the real thing: Sri Lankan Dhal Curry
Ps. Fresh Curry leaves are difficult to find, you can replace with a dash of some kind of masala blend. I like garam masala