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How To Become A Vegetarian...(And Not Miss Meat!)

Updated on December 9, 2015

Hello Darlings! Welcome to The Raven Nicolle Show, I’m Raven Nicolle and today I’m sharing my personal tips for going vegetarian…That’s right vegetarian. As in no meat. But don’t be scared people! I know first hand that the transition from a devoted, burger scarfing carnivore to a salad grubbin’ herbivore can seem difficult. But I think my creative tricks are perfect to help you let your veggie flag fly and not crave a Big Mac.

Don’t Quit Cold Turkey…Literally

I know the rule of thumb for kicking a bad habit is quitting everything at once but you don’t want to be so hasty when dealing with a habit you’ve had your whole life. While switching to an all veggie diet may be easier for some, others may need more time to adapt. Because of this, I recommend only cutting out red meat and pork first. This is helpful because it gradually leads you out of the carnivore lifestyle while not having the feeling of being completely deprived. This was really helpful to me the very first time I tried vegetarianism because my entire family (besides my sister) were HUGE meat eaters.

So you’ve cut out red meat and pork and now you’re only eating poultry. I can hear the tears flowing already, but there are PLENTY of great ways to make poultry your only source of meat without getting bored; don’t be scared to switch it up! There are SO many ways to prepare chicken that you can literally have it every night of the week without feeling like your gonna turn into one. One of my favorite ways to eat chicken was to make chicken burgers! It handles the burger craving so you don’t feel deprived and they taste AMAZING!

Embracing Your Vegetarian Options

Okay so here’s the deal; a lot of people think that going vegetarian means dumping all the food from their fridge and stocking up on tofu and legumes. While tofu and legumes are delicious those aren’t the only things you have to eat! The possibilities are ENDLESS for vegetarians, and half of the options you probably already within reach. Lets open your fridge together, shall we? Along with all those vegetables on the bottom shelf you been avoiding there are also potatoes, breads, grains and noodles (spaghetti night, anyone??). Also all of the yogurt, cheese, mayo (if your aiming for the ovo-vegetarian diet), nuts, seeds, oils and dressings can all stay. Well, what about what’s in my freezer? Unless you still have a frozen Thanksgiving turkey in there, odds are you’ll be okay. The moral of the story kids is that anything without meat is a go! Get creative with your meals, you’ll be surprised how easy it is to eat vegetarian.

Find a Meat Substitute

So you’ve embraced every vegetable known to man, and you’re wondering how much longer you can eat these salads without losing your cool. The craving for meat is unbearable! Fear not, my new veg friends, I have a solution for everything :-) There are some really awesome meat substitutes in the vegetarian world and if you’re willing to give them a chance I’m sure some may even shock you. Some of my personal favorites are the vegetable based ones. Veggies are great because most of them can take on any texture or flavor you want them to. Mushrooms, squash and potatoes are HUGE ones, and when seasoned and cooked correctly, you wont miss the meat at all! The reason why is that their texture is so similar to that of meat when cooked, that it will resemble meat almost perfectly in your meal. Try some seasoned roasted potatoes on your next kabob. Or, one of my personal favorites, mushroom burgers! Just use the huge portabella mushrooms that you see in your grocery store, drizzle them with some olive oil, season them with salt, pepper, Cajun seasoning, garlic powder, what have you, and then throw those babies on the grill! Let them get nice and charred on both sides and then you can top them anyway you’d like! I prefer some caramelized onions, tomatoes and cheese… We can’t forget the cheese! But okay, okay I know most of you are probably reading this and thinking “This lady is crazy! She’s even using vegetables as a burger!” I feel you guys, and I have something for you too! Great companies like Morning Star and Boca dedicate their line to meat substitutes that are constructed of soy and tofu. And don’t knock tofu until you’ve tried it! You’ll be surprised the different ways you can use it to make your dishes more hearty.

Remember Why You Started

Was it a documentary you saw that made you feel disgusted with the meat industry and slaughter houses? Or was it a recent, unexpected doctor’s appointment that told you about your high blood pressure? Or maybe you just want to increase your vegetable intake? For whatever reason you had for starting this journey make sure you remember it through the end. Many people everyday are cutting back on their meat intake and there are even cultures and religions around the world dedicated to vegetarianism; Remember that the next time you feel by yourself. Also, there is such a beautiful, cruelty-free world out there filled with many different foods to try and life changing stories to be told. An initiative for me to go vegetarian was the awful slaughterhouses. The treatment of the animals hours before their deaths are horrendous and there are some great documentaries out there full of information on it if anyone is interested. The idea of vegetarianism is great and it is the most peaceful and humane way to live. Even if you decide that being a full vegetarian is too extreme and you only want to eat vegetarian 3 times a week or even just one meal a day you are still making a difference. That’s one less heart attack, one less chance of illness and one less animal killed. You don’t have to be a strict, tree hugging, tofu eating vegan that only showers once a week and never shaves her legs (I totally just made that stereotype up; sorry if anyone got offended). Just be a modified, more humane version of yourself; your body and planet will thank you!

Disclaimer: These are just my personal opinions and ideas about vegetarianism and eating a more plant based and humane diet. These are all simply my experiences and should not be taken as medical advice, scientifically proven facts or anything of the sort. I’m just a girl trying to spread her message of peace and good vibes :-)

© 2015 The Raven Nicolle Show

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