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Healthy Vegetarian Living & Recipes

Updated on December 9, 2014

My Favorite Vegetarian Resources

I used to be a meat eater; no, I mean a LOT of meat - from your standard lunch meats to filet mignon (I loved raw bacon just as much as a good rare steak). Rarely did I think about what I was putting into my body. If it tasted good then I'd eat it.

Then my brother was diagnosed with a rare colon cancer at the age of 29. He passed away the week of my 23rd birthday. At that point I began to reflect about life in general.

I quit my mechanical engineering career because I didn't want to waste any more time doing something I disliked. I thought about all of the family members and friends that had died of cancer. I began to study up on preventing the disease.

Surprisingly, to me at that time, I found out that what you eat has a lot to do with how healthy you are. So I began to make some changes.

I took baby steps; red meat was the first to go. Then, I gave up poultry. I began eating turkey grinders without the turkey and realized that with the usual mustard, mayo, lettuce & tomato it really didn't taste much different. :)

Then all meat was just out of my diet. And I've never looked back. It's been 12 years. I don't miss meat at all. Actually, even 'meaty' foods don't sit well with me.

In any case, vegetarianism has become an important part of my life. Not only for my health but for the health of other sentient beings and the planet.

So, below you'll find pages I have created to help people make some healthier food choices whether it's eating even one meatless meal regularly, or finding satisfying recipes for full on vegetarians.

Vegetarian Thanksgiving

Vegetarian Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is all about family and food. Most families have recipe traditions that have spanned generations, and everyone looks forward to sharing the feast. Vegetarians and vegans can feel left out when those recipes have meat in them, and the cooks may not know what to make that will be cruelty free as well as satisfying.

The good news is that most of the side dishes on the Thanksgiving table are naturally meat free. Vegans usually have fewer traditionally made choices because of cream, milk or butter, but there are really tasty and readily available substitutes at most chain grocery stores.

Here you'll find delicious vegetarian Thanksgiving menu with highly rated recipes including main dish, sides and desserts.

Vegetarian Valentine's Day Recipes - Romantic Dinner Menu for 2

Vegetarian Valentine's Day Recipes

Looking for a romantic idea to celebrate Valentine's Day? Why not avoid the rush of busy restaurants, stay in and enjoy a home cooked meal? Cooking takes time, and there is nothing like spending time with your sweetie. Send the kids to grandma's then make your favorite foods; cook together; set the mood with soft lighting (think candles!) andromantic music (you may even feel like slow dancing in your living room); sip champagne with dessert cuddling on the sofa (or in a bubble bath, or bed).

Below is a simple yet delicious menu (with recipes) for two which happens to be vegetarian but would be enjoyed by all food lovers. Enjoy!

Vegetarian St. Patrick's Day Recipes

Vegetarian St. Patrick's Day Recipes

When you think of St. Patrick's Day and Irish food classics, what comes to mind? Corned beef and cabbage, Irish beef stew, maybe shepherd's pie. Clearly, if you're trying to eat less meat, this holiday could be tricky. But I've found some great vegetarian and vegan alternatives for your meat free Irish celebrations! Enjoy!

Vegetarian Easter Menu & Recipes

Vegetarian Easter Menu & Recipes

When you think of Easter dinner, what comes to mind? Right, ham. Below is a vegetarian version of glazed ham along with other traditional Easter dishes that are all vegetarian safe. Happy Easter!

Vegetarian Recipes - Only the best vegetarian staples

Vegetarian Chili

Tired of all the vegetarian chili recipes saying things like 'light, low fat, and colorful?' That's not what chili is about; It's about comfort food and having something warm to eat with your freshly baked cornbread on a cold day. This chili is spicy, 'meaty' and delicious. Serve it to your non-vegetarian friends, and they'll think you started eating meat again.

Vegetarian Meatloaf

Well, OK, technically it's not 'meat'loaf, but anyway you make it it's hearty satisfying, savory and in a loaf. There are even some recipes that are made with all of the same ingredients as traditional meatloaf with just a protein exchange. Some recipes sound weird but come out surprisingly tasty with a great consistency. And there is nothing like using leftover meatloaf to make a sandwich. So why should vegetarians be left out?

Vegetarian "Chicken" Noodle Soup

When you aren't feeling well, what's better than a homemade bowl of chicken noodle soup? Well, no-chicken noodle soup, of course! ;) You can even substitute vegetarian ingredients in your grandma's classic recipe, for a delicious, comforting meal. Or you can just try my simple recipe here.

Vegetarian Comfort Foods

Over the years I realized that I didn't have to give up on most comfort foods; I just had to find alternatives. That said, these recipes do not include meat substitutes like soy (tofu) or TVP. They are, however, easy to make, totally satisfying and great meals to serve to your meat eating friends and family.

Rice and Beans

Rice and beans is a staple dish in many parts of the world. I love to try different flavors, and it's so easy and inexpensive with these two ingredients. Here is a collection of recipes from around the globe. All of the recipes below are safe for vegetarians.

Healthy Vegetarian Soup

Making soup can be a really simple way to cram in a variety of ingredients with maximum nutrient density. If you're a vegetarian (all of these recipes can be modified for vegan soup) or just paying attention to getting all of the nutrients you need to stay healthy, these vegetarian soup recipes will please your taste-buds and your nutritionist. Enjoy!

Haiti: Vegetarian Cuisine & Recipes

Haitian cuisine is kréyol cuisine, a mixture of French, African, Spanish and indigenous cooking methods, ingredients and dishes. Rice and beans (dire ak pwa) are a staple. Fiery Scotch bonnet peppers lend their punch to many dishes, and to pikliz, a popular pickled vegetable condiment.

Vegetarian BBQ

Vegetarian BBQ

It's summertime, the official start of grilling season! In addition to providing the smoky flavor that emanates from the coals, grilling caramelizes the natural sugars in the vegetables and makes them taste extra sweet. Just about anything that sprouts from the ground or grows on a tree can be suspended over coals, including corn on the cob, zucchini, potatoes, onions, pineapples, mangoes, and mushrooms. Meat alternatives, such as veggie burgers, veggie dogs, and soy chicken, as well as seitan and tofu are other delicious grilling options.

Whether you're looking to cook up your basic BBQ fare for vegetarians or health conscious meat eaters, these products and recipes are sure to please.


Portabella Sandwiches

If you're looking for a quick and delicious meatless meal, you can't go wrong with a portabella sandwich. At a cookout, grilling these mushrooms up will surely impress your vegetarian guests. However, meat-eaters enjoy them, too, so make sure you have a few extra around.

Vegetarian Observances

Meatless Monday

Well, OK, technically it's not 'meat'loaf, but anyway you make it it's hearty satisfying, savory and in a loaf. There are even some recipes that are made with all of the same ingredients as traditional meatloaf with just a protein exchange. Some recipes sound weird but come out surprisingly tasty with a great consistency. And there is nothing like using leftover meatloaf to make a sandwich. So why should vegetarians be left out?

Most vegetarian meatloaf recipes contain either soy, rice, oatmeal, beans, nuts, cheese or a combination of these ingredients as meat the replacement. Whether you are a vegetarian, vegan or just looking to replace a dinner with a meat-free meal, you'll find some recipes here that are sure to please.

World Vegetarian Day

Every year on October 1st, World Vegetarian Day kicks off a month of parties, potluck, presentations, food tasting displays...and lots of friendly discussions.

For those new to vegetarianism, it serves as an enticement to give meatless fare a try (even for a day) and learn about its many benefits. And, of course, it's the perfect occasion for vegetarians and those already moving towards plant-based diets to celebrate their healthy, compassionate food choices.

Weekday Vegetarian

You are what you eat. You've heard it before; eat more fruits and vegetables while reducing animal products for better health. Well, that can be easier said than done in many cases. With all of the benefits of a vegetarian lifestyle - health, environmental, economic, animal welfare - why does everyone have to go whole hog (pardon the pun)? Start with Meatless Mondays, or better yet be a weekday vegetarian. You can reap many of the benefits of a vegetarian lifestyle while still enjoying foods you love on the weekends - and/or holidays. Just do the best you can; it doesn't have to be all or nothing.

Vegan Marshmallows

Vegan Marshmallows

Are you a vegetarian or vegan missing yummy marshmallow treats like s'mores, rice krispies treats, hot chocolate with mini-marshmallows or just roasting them over a campfire? Well, here you'll find where to buy the best tasting marshmallows and a great recipe to make them yourself.

Eat your vegetables! :) - Do you have any thoughts or questions on healthy vegetarian living?

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    • TapIn2U profile image

      TapIn2U 3 years ago

      Give me a bowl of vegetarian soup any time! Fantastic lens! Sundae ;-)

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Love this lens, beginning with your heart picture. I have many vegetarian friends, but not sure about making the switch myself.

    • Thrinsdream profile image

      Thrinsdream 5 years ago

      Brilliant lens, really enjoyed it, so much to go at ooooh what to eat? With thanks and appreciation. Cathi x

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      these are fabulous healthy recipes thanks for sharing. I have been a vege for 30 years now

    • brendayoungerman profile image

      brendayoungerman 6 years ago

      These recipes look good and I am going to try some and get back to you! Yummy!

    • Yourshowman LM profile image

      Yourshowman LM 7 years ago

      Nice lens.

    • profile image

      julieannbrady 7 years ago

      You know, I truly DO love to eat my vegetables, but don't know if I am cut out to be a real vegetarian. Is it like scotch?

    • Lee Hansen profile image

      Lee Hansen 7 years ago from Vermont

      We had a nearly-vegetarian garden wedding reception/cocktail party. We did serve a few chicken apps to appease some older family members but happily there was almost no food left over after the guests were gone.

    • profile image

      Grumpy-Fett 7 years ago

      Great lens! portabella anything wins hands down for me

    • Sylvestermouse profile image

      Cynthia Sylvestermouse 7 years ago from United States

      Thank you for making this wonderful lens! Angel Blessed and added to my Squid Angel Mouse Tracks lens.

    • JuneMary LM profile image

      JuneMary LM 7 years ago

      Sorry about your brother.

      Interesting recipes --I like "meatloaves". I'm no cook but I think I could try that one.I'll put this one as a featured lens on my new health ones.

      Thanks.

      June.

    • JuneMary LM profile image

      JuneMary LM 7 years ago

      Sorry about your brother.

      Interesting recipes --I like "meatloaves". I'm no cook but I think I could try that one.I'll put this one as a featured lens on my new health ones.

      Thanks.

      June.

    • Paula Atwell profile image

      Paula Atwell 8 years ago from Cleveland, OH

      Excellent job. :)

    • profile image

      enslavedbyfaeries 8 years ago

      I'm very sorry your journey to being a vegetarian had such a tragic beginning. My dad was diagnosed with colon cancer 2 months ago and yes, he still eats a LOT of red meat. Although, I became a vegetarian for different reasons in the beginning, I now realize the many benefits from my family's lifestyle choices. The biggest point I would like make about a vegetarian is that with the MANY meat alternatives, you can still make all your favorite recipes and meals. There is much more to being a vegetarian than eating salad and tofu!! :)

    • OhMe profile image

      Nancy Tate Hellams 8 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      Great lensography for some great lenses. I was sorry to read about your brother. It is so hard to loose a sibling.

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      beautiful lens and a great niche! fave and five*, lensroll