Happy Friday, everyone!
This week marked the start of Lent, which means that many Christians across the world are not eating meat on Fridays for the next few weeks. While it’s easy to eat fish every Friday, meatless Fridays are also a way to try new plant-based recipes!
Whether you are abstaining from meat for Lent or for other reasons, eating meatless once a week is still a great way to improve your health by eating lots of plant-based foods! Meatless Mondays has become a popular way to dedicate one day of the week to a vegetarian diet. One day of meatless eating will also help you balance your grocery budget, as plant-based proteins like beans are more affordable than meats.
One thing that’s important for eating meatless one day per week, especially if you are a runner or other athlete, is to make sure you are getting enough protein. There’s always the temptation, especially for people who eat chicken or red meat most days of the week, to go for comfort food like grilled cheese or mac and cheese on days they choose to abstain from meat. However, while these carb-heavy choices are okay in moderation, they do not offer a lot of protein or nutrients.
On days you eat meatless, try to add plant-based protein sources to your day, such as beans, peas, corn, or nuts and nut butters. Some vegetables offer small amounts of protein, such as spinach, broccoli, brussel sprouts, and mushrooms. Greek yogurt, milk, and cheese also offer a good source of protein plus the calcium your bones need! Eggs are one of the best meatless sources of protein, as they are a complete protein and so versatile! Using these foods along with whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats, you can fill your meatless day with a delicious and nutritious meals!
Personally, I’m a fan of simplicity. I find that beans, rice, and lots of vegetables in a stir-fry make a delicious meatless meal that can have endless varieties.
Here is a meatless meals recipe round-up from recipes that I’ve shared on the blog in the past! I hope you enjoy!
Meatless Breakfast Recipes
Banana Nut Oatmeal: Oats, egg, and almonds pack this sweet and satiating breakfast with 15 grams of protein.
Apple Pie Yogurt Bowl: Depending on what brand you use, Greek yogurt has 18-21 grams of protein. The peanut butter offers some protein and healthy fat to keep you full for hours!
Oatmeal Waffles with Cinnamon Maple Greek Yogurt: Oats and Greek yogurt add 11 grams of protein to these healthy whole grain waffles!
Acorn Squash Pancakes: The squash offers lots of nutrients and a taste so rich you won’t miss any bacon or sausage with your breakfast. If you want extra protein, top with nut butter or serve with eggs.
Meatless Lunch/Dinner Recipes
Baked Falafel with Garlic Tahini Drizzle: The beans provide approximately 18 grams of protein per serving. Serve with brown rice, greens, or in a whole wheat wrap for a well-rounded and flavorful meatless meal.
Crispy Chickpea and Sweet Potato Salads: 15 grams of protein and 18 grams of fiber make a filling meal out of this warm and savory salad.
Cheesy Acorn Squash Pasta: This is my most popular recipe, and for a good reason! It’s a healthy, flavorful, and veggie-filled take on mac and cheese. For a meatless meal, skip the bacon and add beans instead.
Crispy Chickpea and Roasted Cauliflower Risotto: This is one of the first recipes I shared on the blog! It’s a filling and delicious meal that’s so decadent tasting, you won’t miss the meat.