The dietitians’ vegan meal plan for busy parents

by | August 21, 2018

“Okay, but what do we eat!?” is one of the most common questions I receive when families decide to go vegan and they need a vegan meal plan. It is often asked with a sense of panic centered around whether or not it will taste good, if it will provide the nutrition they need, and how to get their kids to be cool with vegan meals, too.

Never fear, parents. Plants are here.

Below are some easy, delicious recipes that will have everyone asking for more and they can be mixed into your vegan meal plan for the week for easy planning. One of the best things about going vegan is that most meals are highly adaptable to individual needs, preferences, and what’s in your kitchen at any given time. Easily swap out one ingredient for another and you can still wind up with a nutrient-packed crowd pleaser. For more family-friendly recipes, join us in the Ask The Dietitian premium Facebook group that opens on August 23rd and subscribe to get a weekly vegan meal plan!

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Vegan Meal Plan

BREAKFAST

Avocado Toast

4 slices thick, seedy bread

4 tsp vegan butter, coconut oil, or hummus

2 large avocados, halved

8 thin slices tomato

Optional: sea salt, red pepper flakes, garlic powder, hemp seeds, nutritional yeast

Directions:

Toast bread. Spread butter, oil or hummus on toast. Mash half an avocado on each slice of bread and top with tomatoes and other optional additions. Serve alongside fruit smoothies.

Tofu Scramble

1 block extra firm tofu

1 Tbsp olive oil or water

1/2 an onion, diced

1 Tbsp minced garlic

2 celery stalks, diced

1/2 small head of cauliflower, diced

1 bell pepper, diced

3-4 cremini or white button mushrooms, chopped

8-10 grape tomatoes, halved

2 handfuls baby spinach

Seasoning:

2 Tbsp nutritional yeast

1/2 tsp chili powder

1/2 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp turmeric

1 No Chicken bouillon cube

Directions:

Let tofu drain in the sink while you cook the vegetables. In a large skillet, heat onion in oil until translucent, then add garlic and stir. Add all remaining vegetables, except spinach, and cook 5-10 minutes more, until softened. Move vegetables over to one side of the pan and let cook. Squeeze tofu into crumbles with your hands onto the other side of the pan. Add seasoning to the tofu and mix through, let cook a few minutes. Mix the veggies and tofu together and stir in the spinach

Cook until spinach is wilted. Serve with banana walnut muffins.

LUNCH

Black-Eyed Pea & Orzo Salad

8 oz dry orzo

2 (16 oz) cans black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed

1/3 cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes

1/2 small red onion, diced

1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley

2 oz can sliced black olives

7 oz extra firm tofu, cut into small cubes

Optional: 1/3 cup pine nuts

Dressing:

1/2 cup red wine vinegar

1/2 cup olive oil

1/8 cup lemon juice

1 tsp agave

1 tsp fine sea salt

1/2 tsp pepper

Directions:

Cook the orzo according to packaging directions. Meanwhile, mix together dressing and set aside. The oil and vinegar will separate so you will need to give it a good stir again before adding to your salad. Combine the onion, olives, sun-dried tomatoes, parsley, black-eyed peas, pine nuts and tofu cubes in a large bowl. Once the orzo is done cooking, drain. Add to the bowl with the other ingredients and give a good stir. Add ~1/2 to 3/4 of the dressing you made to the salad, depending on how much you want on it. Mix everything together again and serve alongside veggie sticks and hummus.

Layered Tofu Sandwich

2 slices whole wheat bread

1 thick slice of extra firm tofu

1 Tbsp nutritional yeast

1 tsp turmeric

1 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp onion powder

1 Tbsp olive oil or water

1 slice non-dairy cheese

1/2 an avocado

2 Tbsp hummus

2 slices tomato

Handful of baby spinach leaves

Directions:

Heat a small skillet with a bit of oil or water. Mix together nutritional yeast, turmeric, garlic powder and onion powder in a small dish. Add the slice of tofu to the pan and sprinkle with the seasoning mix.

While the tofu cooks, toast the bread. Once the tofu starts to become lightly golden, flip, season and cook the other side the same. When the toast is done, spread one piece with hummus and the other with mashed avocado. Layer with cheese, spinach, tomato, stack the tofu and close the sandwich.

Cut in half and serve with apple slices and nut butter.

DINNER

Seitan Enchiladas

8 x 6 inch tortillas

2 cans vegan refried beans

1 cup non-dairy cheese shreds

1 (8oz) package premade seitan, cut into thin 2 inch strips

1 (16oz) jar mild or medium salsa

2 avocados, cut into chunks

Directions:

Fill each tortilla with refried beans, cheese, and seitan and roll up. Place in a round or 9 x 13 inch casserole dish coated with cooking spray.  Top evenly with salsa. Bake at 375 for 20 min until the tortillas start to crisp. Cover with foil for another 5-10 min. Serve with sliced avocado, alongside sauteed spinach with garlic.

Lentil & Faux Sausage One Pot Meal

1 Tbsp minced garlic

1/2 yellow onion, diced

1 Tbsp olive oil

3-4 cups vegetable broth

1 large carrot, sliced

1 stalk celery, diced

1 bell pepper, diced

1/2 cup dry orzo

1 (15oz) can lentils

1 Not Chicken bouillon cube

1 cup frozen spinach

2-3 vegan sausages, sliced

3 Tbsp nutritional yeast

Directions:

Heat a large pan with olive oil. Add garlic and onion. Heat until onion is translucent, then add carrots, bell pepper, and celery. Cook for 3-5 min, then add orzo and broth. Cook 10 min until orzo is softened. Add lentils, bouillon cube, spinach and sliced sausages and cook another 2-3 min. Remove from heat. Add nutritional yeast, mix well and serve alongside mixed fruit.

SNACKS

Soft pretzels with melted vegan cheese, sliced apples

Baby carrots, cucumber slices, and red bell pepper strips with hummus

Non-dairy yogurt with granola and berries, mixed nuts

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Lauren Panoff

Lauren Panoff, MPH, RD is a plant-based lifestyle strategist for families and founder of Chronic Planet. Join the Ask A Vegan Dietitian premium Facebook group to talk nutrition with Lauren and receive weekly meal templates!

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Comments

One Response to “The dietitians’ vegan meal plan for busy parents”

  1. Abby
    October 21st, 2018 @ 2:44 am

    These are still way to fiddly for a busy parent! Too many ingredients.

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