looking for fast meals - not recipes - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 07-12-2017, 07:27 AM
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Question looking for fast meals - not recipes

I've been 80-90% vegetarian for 3 months now and I want to be 100% by end of year. I'll need a staple of quick things to throw together if I am going to make it. Pinterest and websites all have 'recipes' and I don't need anything ground shattering - just clever ideas from you nice people.

For example, here are a few I've learned so far:
- Avocado: just cut in half and eat out of the shell - great emergency food
- Kiefer: chug 8 oz every morning to feel full
- Almonds: keep them in my desk drawer

What are your go to meals? I love rice bowls but all the 'recipes' seem so complicated. If I make rice early in the week how would you use it?

If I can always have something easy and healthy then I can stay on track. I've lost 40 pounds since January and dropped my HDL by 20% by going vegetarian. I need to make it sustainable.

And cooking 12 ingredient recipes is just not realistic

Thanks!

Mashugana
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#2 Old 07-12-2017, 09:45 AM
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I generally have a meal prep day and keep a collection of "ingredients" that last through the week.

for a grain/pasta bowl week: I'll make up a large batch of a grain (like brown rice, farro wheat, quinoa) or pasta, steam up some veggies (broccoli, or cauliflower, snap or regular peas, zucchini/squash), a dressing of some type. maybe I'll even get wild and add some mixed nuts & or dried fruit in the bowl. I keep the ingredients separate & put together before work.

Salad Jars: (you can pinterest this) but salad jars keep very well if prepped on a Sunday for the work week. As long as the dressing keeps at the bottom on the jar, the rest of the salad won't wilt.

Wraps: slice up your favorite veggies on a Sunday, wash greens & put in salad keeper. The individual hummus servings save a lot of time (although I feel bad about all the packaging). You can also prep the veggies/hummus/greens in your favorite lunch container. Put together with a wrap/pita while at work.

Hope some of these ideas help.
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#3 Old 07-12-2017, 11:36 AM
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Rice and most grains can be refrigerated up to a week. They also can frozen.
I always have frozen broccoli, cauliflower, green beans, peas and corn. I never microwave them, but let them thaw a bit and heat with the rest of meal. I'll throw broccoli peas or cauliflower with precooked grains, some curry powder or garlic powder, and top with peanuts or slivered almonds for a work lunch
You can thin peanut butter with water and spice up with sriracha, or other hot sauce, or curry powder for a quick sauce

Fat free refried beans, canned beans, canned tomatoes, tortilla wraps, taco shells, bagged salad mix, onions, peppers are all staples and can be put together in wrap sandwiches. Spread taco shells with refried beans, add beans and lettuce.
Can of diced tomatoes and chilis (think rotel) or just diced tomatoes, and a can of beans added to sauteed celery and onion and pepper- chili

hummus is good for dipping anything as well as sandwiches.
Vegan mayo- like Just Mayo which is cheapest at Target and walmart is a great addition for anything that needs added flavor and for making it taste a bit less "healthy". Sprinkle garlic powder and nooch over mayo you have a cheesy like spread.

Pasta-- add whatever dry pasta in a pot. Cover with cold water enough to just cover pasta. Turn on heat. set timer for 10 minutes, stir occasionally. After 10 check and add time till done. Turn off heat and add frozen veggies. Drain some water, leaving the bottom covered with water and add a good amount of nutritional yeast, some garlic, a dollop of mayo.

Mash chickpeas with vegan mayo (or salad dressing) and add whatever you'd add to tuna, egg or chicken salad. I like to add pickle relish and onions. Sometimes I'll add a bit of curry powder and minced onions instead

Beans on toast are a very good breakfast. Bushes steakhouse baked beans are vegan and my favorite canned baked beans. You really have to check baked bean s labels carefully for things like beef fat or bacon. or natural flavors, but for some reason I find the steakhouse ones are-I emailed Bush.
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#4 Old 07-12-2017, 12:10 PM
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Awesome! Keep them coming please

Thank you!
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#5 Old 07-12-2017, 12:51 PM
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Do you have or ever tried nutritional yeast? I've grown from only liking it on popcorn to loving it on almost everything. My taste has really changed from thinking it bitter to very savory and with some additions like garlic, some fat, and an acid like lemon being very cheesey

apple and peanut butter--or celery and pb

instant mashed potatoes both as is and an thickener for sauces, soups,

I get Better than bouollion no chicken and no beef soup bases online when I order other things. You may find them in stores. I think they're the best flavor additions.
You can whisk a tablespoon flour in a cup of cold water till lump free, stir while heating and then add a teaspoon of the base for a quick fat free gravy. Frontier boullion powder is vegan and can be found in bulk sections if you have a store with bulk things

Better then boullion or other veg broth, a can of beans (always rinse first). Throw in frozen veggies. Little pasta like orzo can be cooked with the broth first for about 8 to 10 min. if started in cold liquid

Cabbage is quickly cooked if minced fine--or just buy a bag of cole slaw! Sautee in a little oil, or just enough water to steam. Maybe with some sliced onions. Add frozen peas when done. I like this with farro or brown rice or pasta noodles with nutritional yeast (nooch) and garlic powder. Maybe a bit of lemon or vinegar
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#6 Old 07-12-2017, 07:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mashugana View Post
I've been 80-90% vegetarian for 3 months now and I want to be 100% by end of year. I'll need a staple of quick things to throw together if I am going to make it. Pinterest and websites all have 'recipes' and I don't need anything ground shattering - just clever ideas from you nice people.

For example, here are a few I've learned so far:
- Avocado: just cut in half and eat out of the shell - great emergency food
- Kiefer: chug 8 oz every morning to feel full
- Almonds: keep them in my desk drawer


Mashugana
Are you planning to be a lacto- vegetarian?

Kefir is made from fermented milk isn't it ? Or can you make it by fermenting soy milk? You can, after all, get soy yogurt.

"The time will come when men such as I will look upon the murder of animals as they now look upon the murder of men." - Leonardo Da Vinci, Italian Painter, Sculptor, Architect, Musician, Engineer, and Scientist

When it comes to having a central nervous system, and the ability to feel pain, hunger, and thirst, a rat is a pig is a dog is a boy. ~Ingrid Newkirk

Last edited by BlueMts; 07-12-2017 at 07:26 PM.
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#7 Old 07-13-2017, 04:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueMts View Post
Are you planning to be a lacto- vegetarian?

Kefir is made from fermented milk isn't it ? Or can you make it by fermenting soy milk? You can, after all, get soy yogurt.
This is the transitioning to vegetarian forum, so it's okay!

There is water kefir and coconut kefir that are vegan. I've seen both at natural food stores, and the kefir grains sold online as well
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#8 Old 07-19-2017, 06:08 AM
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Thank you! I'm American so I would say your responses are awesome. I think in the UK I should say brilliant, yes?



Thanks again.
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#9 Old 07-25-2017, 10:07 PM
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Hi! Look in your grocery store for MorningStar Farms products. They are microwaveable fake meat and they are GOOD, and don't take long to prepare (or take in your purse and allow it to defrost throughout your workday). Usually sold at Trader Joe's, I think.

Also: Cheeeese!!! It's protein, it's healthy, it's filling! Slice cheddar and put it on top of green apple. Spread bleu cheese on a cracker and drizzle with honey. Put some brie on a brioche bun with apple slices and honey! the options are limitless.

Greek yogurt. Always works. very filling.

Or: throw some random fruits and a cup of vanilla yogurt in the blender. Fruit smoothie. Add almonds, or carrots, or avocado, for an extra bit of health.

slice up a log of mozzarella and a tomato and eat it with balsamic glaze or balsamic dressing drizzled on top. Delicious! this is also a good thing to put on avocado.

good luck
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#10 Old 09-04-2017, 02:07 PM
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Exclamation Cheese warning + Chickpeas are your friend

Cheese is amazing and that's been a tough thing for me to ever give up.... but as a lifelong vegetarian (Indian, Hindu) I was surprised when only a couple years ago I learned that cheese has rennet, an enzyme taken from the stomach of a slaughtered calf. I know countless vegetarians who eat cheese and there are cheeses that are not made with rennet or have a version of rennet made from other fungal/bacterial sources, so depending on what type of vegetarian you want to be and the verification of ingredients, you may be ok, but I thought I should let you know: (See Vegetarian Society's factsheet on Cheese and rennet)

As for quick meal ideas-- chickpeas are your friend. I'm talking hummus, or canned chickpeas to make your own quick meal. Hummus is something I ALWAYS have stocked in my fridge. Often when I'm feeling lazy, I make a quick "chana" dish using canned chickpeas, spices and tomato paste as my go-to for something filling. To add veggies, sometimes I will add some sauteed spinach and/or bell pepper to the channa. Easy meal to have with rice. ( I prefer brown rice or quinoa instead of plain white rice).


-Amritha @amr ithaalladi
For vegetarian meal ideas check out the In Transit Blog: Journeys Through Far-Off Place, Food, Fitness and Finding Fulfillment
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#11 Old 09-04-2017, 02:22 PM
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Originally Posted by intransitblog View Post
Cheese is amazing and that's been a tough thing for me to ever give up.... but as a lifelong vegetarian (Indian, Hindu) I was surprised when only a couple years ago I learned that cheese has rennet, an enzyme taken from the stomach of a slaughtered calf. I know countless vegetarians who eat cheese and there are cheeses that are not made with rennet or have a version of rennet made from other fungal/bacterial sources, so depending on what type of vegetarian you want to be and the verification of ingredients, you may be ok, but I thought I should let you know: (See Vegetarian Society's factsheet on Cheese and rennet)


-Amritha @amr ithaalladi
For vegetarian meal ideas check out the In Transit Blog: Journeys Through Far-Off Place, Food, Fitness and Finding Fulfillment

Hi Amritha,

In the United States, cheese-making has changed during the past 15 years.

According to the Vegetarian Resource Group, as of the year 2012, about 90% of American-made cheese is made using vegan microbial enzymes (Fermentation Produced Chymosin, or FPC), rather than animal rennet: http://www.vrg.org/blog/2012/08/21/m...rian-are-they/

The Dairy Research Institute says the same thing: https://www.cheesesociety.org/wp-con...tion-McCoy.pdf

Interestingly, GMO technology is what made these non-animal FPC enzymes so cheap and ubiquitous. FPC enzymes are industrially-produced by genetically-modified yeast. Here is a year 1990 American newspaper article, announcing the government-approval of this cheese-enzyme-making yeast - it was the very first GMO-produced food product to be approved by U.S. Food & Drug Administration: http://articles.latimes.com/1990-03-...oduct-for-food

Unfortunately, according to the Vegetarian Resource Group, cheeses made with FPC enzymes cannot be labeled or sold as USDA Organic (see detailed article in the bottom part of this webpage: http://www.vrg.org/blog/2012/08/21/m...rian-are-they/ ). The North American "Non GMO Project" will not allow its label to be placed on cheeses made with FPC enzymes: https://www.nongmoproject.org/high-r...icroorganisms/. Nor do these cheeses comply with European Organic standards. However, considering that 90% of American-made cheese is made with FPC enzymes, I think it's a small victory.

.
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Specific recommendations for a healthy diet include: eating more fruit, vegetables, legumes, nuts and grains; cutting down on salt, sugar and fats. It is also advisable to choose unsaturated fats, instead of saturated fats and towards the elimination of trans-fatty acids."
- United Nations' World Health Organization
http://www.who.int/topics/diet/en/

Last edited by David3; 09-04-2017 at 03:51 PM.
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#12 Old 05-29-2018, 11:38 AM
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Something I like to do for a quick meal from time to time is take a can of Amy's vegetarian chili and add it to rice or spread it on bread and toast it with a follow your heart american cheese slice to make a chili-and-cheese sandwich. Amy's also has some pretty good vegetarian frozen dinners and canned soups.
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#13 Old 08-02-2018, 02:25 PM
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very informative thread. Interesting information.


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#14 Old 08-03-2018, 03:16 AM
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Save time with these plant-based food tips!

Hi there,

Great that you are going meat free!

Being vegetarian and even vegan is so much easier than you think. You just need to get used to what to eat

Personally I swear by this tip! I save myself so much time by stocking up your freezer with food. This way I always have quick access to a lot of nutrients within 10 min!

I buy for example frozen vegetables and fruit. And when I make rice or other starches such as couscous or whole grain pasta I make the whole package. I make 1 and 2 portions and store them in the freezer for when I need them. And I do the same the beans! Biggest time saver ever!

My favorite snack at the moment is whole grain rice crackers with hummus and slices of cucumber with cayenne pepper!

And I like to make my own bean spread by blending beans of choice and some spices to my own taste.

To get a full feeling and a energy boost in the morning I eat oatmeal with hot water. Easy, cheap, fast and full of nutrients!

On the website easyvegangoodlife you can download a Free Food Guide that tells you how to take in all the nutrients your body needs on a vegan diet. I'm sure you would benefit from it

Good luck!

x Ziya Empereur
Founder Easy Vegan Good Life Ecourse
''Become Vegan in Only 7 Days''
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#15 Old 08-05-2018, 08:00 AM
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Here are some of my favorite time-saving tips.

When you buy veggies at the market, when you get home, first thing wash and cut them up. I'm much more likely to grab the carrots and celery to take along for a snack (or just eat right away) if they are already ready-to-go.

Instead of chugging Keifer, try this instead. Make a blender full of smoothies. For each 8 oz of soymilk add 1 - 2 tbsp peanut butter, 1 banana, 1 -2 tbsp ground flax seed. Pour it into tumblers or jars. Keep one in the frig and freeze the rest. You can take the frozen ones with you and you always have one in the frig to chug when needed.

Make a big pot of burrito filling. buy tortillas. and make 10 burritos all at once. When you freeze them you have to make sure they don't stick together. I use waxed paper. Or you can use aluminum foil and it goes straight from the freezer to your lunch box. Microwave for 3 minutes and you have a breakfast you can eat in the car.

Make a quart of steel cut oats in a rice cooker. Store it in the frig. In the morning take what you like as a serving add some milk and raisins and nuke for 2 minutes.

mass produce your PB&Js. Take a loaf of bread. I recommend using a whole wheat bread with max fiber and protein. Spread out half the slices. add about 2 tbs peanut butter and 2 tbsp jelly. spread and cover with the other slice. Put the sandwiches right back into the bag the bread came in. Freeze. They don't stick together. excellent for brown bag lunches. or slice into quarters for a snack. Use good PB - no added oils, salt or sugar. Some stores have PB making machines. PB with no oil is hard to spread. So you can freeze your bread first to make it easier.

Make a couple of pounds of oven baked tofu. then all week long you have tofu to add to salads, soups, and stir fry veggies.

Sometimes I go shopping and come home and do all these things at once. If you already have a loaf of bread frozen and the oats soaking you can do all these things in less than an hour.
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