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Easy Meatless Recipes in the Time of Covid

These last two to three months have been challenging, to say the least. COVID-19 has changed the entire societal landscape for us from grocery shopping to restaurants to entertainment, probably forever.

Forced quarantines, social distancing, and your favorite local businesses temporarily shut down all have combined to create a massive shift in how we do life. One area where we all feel this shift is in how we do our food shopping and manage our diets.

The news has recently been talking about how this pandemic has impacted the meat processing industry, possibly leading to the reduced availability of certain meat products in local supermarkets and other venues. This means fewer protein options for meal planners, which requires us to:

  • Be more creative with our meal options. 
  • Find alternative protein sources.
  • Substitute our meat intake with more vegetables and grains (not a bad thing).

And, most importantly…

  • Stay sane through all of it!

With all of this in mind, we want to do our part to help you get through this COVID-19 difficulties. Below, we are including four delicious and nutritious meatless recipes that you can use to inject some life into your meal planning and preparation in the days ahead.

Avocado and Chickpea Salad

Try this dish on for size if you want something fresh-tasting that’s perfect for outdoor dining under the stars. This combo of chickpeas and avocado offers a powerful 1-2-3 punch of protein, fiber, and unsaturated fats (the good fat).

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp avocado oil
  • ¼ cup lime juice
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • ¼ cup cilantro
  • 2 cans organic chickpeas
  • 1 seedless cucumber, sliced
  • 20 cherry tomatoes, halved
  • ½ red onion, chopped
  • 2 peeled avocados, diced or sliced

Directions: Combine ingredients, toss, and serve. Easy!

Serves:  4-6 people

Single Pan Mexican Quinoa

This dish is light, healthy, and nutritious, plus it is super easy to make – even the quinoa is cooked right in the pan.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 jalapeno, minced
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (14.5 oz) can fire-roasted diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup corn kernels
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 peeled avocado, diced
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 2 tbsp cilantro leaves, chopped

Directions:

  1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic and jalapeno, and cook, stirring frequently, for about 1 minute.
  2. Stir in quinoa, vegetable broth, beans, tomatoes, corn, chili powder, and cumin; season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  3. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat, and simmer until quinoa is cooked – approximately 20 minutes.
  4. Stir in avocado, lime juice and cilantro.
  5. Serve immediately.

Serves: 4 people

Roasted Red Pepper Alfredo

This dish is an incredibly creamy and rich alfredo that takes just 20 minutes to make from start to finish! How’s that for easy and fast?

Ingredients:

  • 12 oz linguine
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 4 oz crumbled goat cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 (12 oz) jar roasted red peppers, drained and chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Cook pasta according to package instructions and drain well.
  2. Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic and onion, and cook, stirring frequently for 2-3 minutes or until the onions have become translucent.
  3. Stir in milk, heavy cream, goat cheese, and parmesan until cheeses have melted.
  4. Add red peppers and puree with an immersion blender.
  5. Stir in pasta and gently toss with salt and pepper.
  6. Serve immediately.

Serves: 4 people

Sesame Style Soba Noodles

Try this Asian-inspired recipe if you want a hearty and satisfying meal on the dinner table in just 15 minutes! 

Ingredients:

  • 8 oz soba
  • 1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 clove garlic, pressed
  • 1 tsp grated ginger
  • 2 green onions, sliced
  • 2 tbsp cilantro leaves, chopped
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds
  • 2 hard-boiled eggs, sliced lengthwise (optional)

Directions:

  1. Cook noodles according to package instructions, rinse under cold water, drain, and set aside.
  2. In a bowl, whisk together rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil, sugar, garlic and ginger.
  3. In a larger bowl, combine noodles, rice wine vinegar mixture, green onions, cilantro, and sesame seeds.
  4. Serve immediately, garnished with eggs, if desired.

Serves: 4 people

As you can see, there are plenty of delicious options available that don’t require meat but still provide plenty of flavor and nutritional value. All you have to do now is roll up your sleeves and get to work!

Bon Appétit!

Do you need help with your nutrition plans and weight loss journey? Reach out to your local Bee Healthy Clinic!

| Food, Nutrition