Cheap vegan meals for a teenager. - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 06-28-2013, 09:58 AM
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So I've very recently became vegan, a week ago today after a year of being a vegetarian, and I need some help on get varied good tasting meals.

I live with my dad and we don't have much money. My dad isn't fully behind me being vegan and he's making it quite hard for me, well, harder than it already is being vegan. He thinks I became vegan to be awkward and make it difficult for him because being a vegetarian just "wasn't awkward enough" for me. But that's not the case.

Not having much money makes it incredibly hard to prepare 2 different meals a night for the both of us. It's easy enough for him to make himself a meal, but when it comes to me I usually have a few boiled veg and mashed potato made with soya milk. Okay, it keeps me fed and healthy but sooner or later I'm going to get extremely bored of near enough the same meal every night and end up being a vegetarian again, which I'd rather not be, and I don;t think I could, knowing the things I know about egg and dairy farming now.

I have asked many times for a vegetable curry or something but he refuses to make me one or let me cook it myself, actually, he refuses to let me cook at all because I make "too much of a mess".

So really all I'm asking for is a few meal suggestions made with vegetables without milk or eggs (obviously)

Thanks.
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#2 Old 06-28-2013, 10:33 AM
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ASDA do these packet mixes which are cheap and easy to prepare:

 

http://groceries.asda.com/asda-estore/search/searchcontainer.jsp?trailSize=1&searchString=meat-free+mix&domainName=Products&headerVersion=v1&_requestid=72382

 

While they're all suitable for vegetarians, some of them contain 'natural flavourings' and you might want to find out whether there's any non-vegan ingredients in those.


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#3 Old 06-28-2013, 11:39 AM
 
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Those Asda mixes look great - very cheap too, I bet you could get a lot of meals out of them.

 

Maybe you don't need to be preparing two meals a night? What does your dad eat? There are lots of things you can both eat that he can add meat/cheese to if he wants. It's hard to know what to suggest without knowing what he's eating. 

 

You don't have to stick to potato every night if you're making your own dinner - what about pasta, noodles, rice, quinoa, couscous? You can add vegetables and some protein - like beans, nuts, or meat sub like tofu. That's a really easy step by step way to cook without a recipe or fancy skills. For example, you could have rice with stir fried vegetables with nuts thrown in. You don't have to eat bland food either, a bit of soy sauce/veggie stock/herbs and spices will go a long way and if you buy the powdered kind of spices it doesn't have to be expensive. One of my favourite easy meals is chilli. I make a really cheap, lazy studenty one sometimes: can of baked beans, can of sweetcorn, half a tube of tomato puree and a sprinkle of spice mix (one sachet of mixed taco spices can last me LOADS of times). You can add onion and garlic for more flavour and nutrients at the start. And different beans. 

 

If your dad says you're too messy, why don't you show him otherwise? Tidy things up, make a real effort to have a sparkling kitchen, get to him to agree to let you cook a curry just ONCE if you'll leave it spotless. I'm not saying you ARE messy, but if he knows you're going to be really responsible it would mean he couldn't use it as an excuse. Of course it's possible he's just saying that because he doesn't want you to be a vegan and is trying to make it harder - who knows?!

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#4 Old 06-28-2013, 11:44 AM
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You can make a very simple tomato sauce using just a can of chopped tomatoes, dried basil, garlic powder, a pinch of chilli powder, and salt to taste.  Add chick peas or other canned beans, and serve with cooked spaghetti or other pasta. 

 

Or buy a can of ratatouille, a can of small potatoes and a can of red kidney beans: cut potatoes up into small pieces and mix with the ratatouille (you can add a crumbled stock cube to add some 'oomph' to the taste). Stir in 1 large can of the beans, and heat in the microwave for a few minutes (adding grated vegan cheese on top is even better). Serve with bread to dip in. 

 

Both make two servings, so there's 4 meals for you!

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#5 Old 06-28-2013, 11:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kath View Post

Those Asda mixes look great - very cheap too, I bet you could get a lot of meals out of them.

 

 

Yeah, I think they each serve four. I've only tried a couple of them so can't vouch for all of them - I really like the sausage mix, perfect with mashed potatoes and veggies, or a fried breakfast. You could rehydrate a pack and keep it in the fridge for a few days in a plastic tub, and use when wanted.


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#6 Old 06-28-2013, 12:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 'IckenNoodleSoup View Post

ASDA do these packet mixes which are cheap and easy to prepare:

 

http://groceries.asda.com/asda-estore/search/searchcontainer.jsp?trailSize=1&searchString=meat-free+mix&domainName=Products&headerVersion=v1&_requestid=72382

 

While they're all suitable for vegetarians, some of them contain 'natural flavourings' and you might want to find out whether there's any non-vegan ingredients in those.

 

The chilli is reasonable, I kick up the heat with a big glob of chilli sauce (my, I made that sound attractive!) and a can of red kidney beans.

 

I did have the burgers the other week and found them a bit soft - are the sausages the same (or perhaps I just added too much water!)

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#7 Old 06-28-2013, 12:12 PM
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Thanks everyone! I wasn't aware that those little asda mixes were vegan, I'll have to buy some next time I'm there!
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#8 Old 06-28-2013, 12:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by angie54321 View Post

 

The chilli is reasonable, I kick up the heat with a big glob of chilli sauce (my, I made that sound attractive!) and a can of red kidney beans.

 

I did have the burgers the other week and found them a bit soft - are the sausages the same (or perhaps I just added too much water!)

 

I add less water than they say to. Like 200ml instead of 225ml or something. I also add a teaspoon of dried herbs and lots of black pepper. I cook them good and hot too, so they're crisp outside and firm in the middle.

 

The burgers were soft when I had them too, but I think that could be remedied by reducing the amount of water same as with the sausages.

 

Good idea to add kidney beans to the chilli, as Swaffle & his dad are on a low income, keeping a couple of the tinned 'value' kidney beans in stock would be a good idea.


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#9 Old 06-28-2013, 12:29 PM
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Thanks, Icken Noodle Soup,  I'll try them again.

 

I always buy the value range of red kidney beans, they are about 20p a can or something ridiculous like that, handy for lots of different meals.

 

OP, I've just thought of another -  Get 5 or so dried apricots and soak in hot water. Cut up into small pieces.   Put a serving of dried couscous in a glass bowl.  Make a sauce out of the amount of water suggested by the couscous packet, a crumbled stock cube (oxo are best for crumbling), a spoonful or so of Pataks korma curry paste. Add the sauce to the couscous, with half a cup of defrosted frozen peas, and a handful of cashew nuts or red kidney beans. Stir and cover with a plate.  Leave for 3-4 mins and it should be ready.

 

Serve with salad, and soya yogurt spooned on top of the couscous.

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#10 Old 06-28-2013, 12:38 PM
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Another quickie recipe that I've just thought of:

 

A small tub of hummus: dilute a little and stir it through cooked spaghetti. Add cooked peas, or sweetcorn, or cashew nuts, or fried onions or....whatever else takes your fancy!

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#11 Old 06-28-2013, 12:47 PM
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angie they sound lovely :3
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#12 Old 06-29-2013, 12:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Swaffle View Post

angie they sound lovely :3

Thanks, they're my 'go-to's when I don't have time to cook smiley.gif

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#13 Old 06-29-2013, 01:43 PM
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What I found really nice were Hummus wraps with veggies in, just had a few when I got back from Q-con, they were really nice, and I had it on garlic and pepper tortillas I think they were, it was delicious grin.gif
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#14 Old 06-29-2013, 02:28 PM
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TVP is fairly inexpensive, i buy 500 gram packs for £2.29 at a health food store. Once cooked you get about four times the amount that you started with, so you'll get about 2kg of TVP. It's probably best to add some sort of sauce or spices because it is very bland, personally though, i don't bother with any condiments i just eat it as it is, but that's probably just me. You also get 25g of protein per 100g of cooked TVP, so it's a good source of protein as well.
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#15 Old 06-29-2013, 06:39 PM
 
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Swaffle- My teenage daughter and I are fairly new vegans ourselves (about 10 months or so) and where we are (small town TX) there's no such thing as a "vegan option" so we pretty much make everything from scratch.  This is my daughter's newest favorite (simple, and where we are the ingredients are really cheap)!

1lb butternut squash (peeled, seeded, chopped to 1/2 inch squares) here 99 cents per pound! Toss with 1Tbs each EVOO or coconut oil, minced garlic(fresh or jarred... minced garlic in the jar is super cheap and lasts quite a while in the fridge) and rosemary (we grow the rosemary so it's free, but any of your favorite dried herbs at 1/2Tbs should do the trick). Place in baking dish or metal pan, don't even need to spray and roast at 400degrees F for about 40 minutes. Big flavor! Really good as is or in a wrap or on top of brown rice! Hope this helps! Hang in there, you're doing amazing!! 

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