Marvellous Meatless Meals

For an easy meatless meal your family will love, try this ‘Root Vegetable, Bean, & Barley Bowl’

Tips and Recipes to Help You Lighten Up Your Menu for Early Spring Dining

All winter long, my sturdy cast iron pot serves me well as I prepare heavy stews and soups. But with the advent of spring, the stew pot is packed away and out comes the wok and saucepan as I turn to lighter fare for family dinners.

Going meatless is one way to trim some ‘weight from the plate’, and when it comes to preparing delicious meals, the first items that I load up my pantry with are versatile root vegetables. As well, organic onions, peppers, and celery are among the ingredients sure to put the “spring back in your step,” as grandma use to say.

Also prized are budget-friendly pulses and grains rich in vitamins and minerals along with protein, potassium, and dietary fibre. They are low in fat and calories, yet provide a satisfying alternative to traditional meat dishes. (Studies have shown that cutting back on meat can help to reduce the risk of stroke, heart disease, cancer, Type 2 diabetes, and obesity.)

Pulses and grains also contain antioxidants which help to ward off various types of body invaders. So go ahead and lighten up with these favourite recipes! You’ll be amazed at how easy it is to serve meatless meals that your family will love. Recipes serve four to six people.

View the full printable recipe

My family loves this colourful dish, and so do our dinner guests! Serve it with crusty rolls – and supper is on.

Ingredients:

  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup diced celery
  • 1 large diced pepper
  • 4 cups vegetable stock (or water)
  • 2 large chopped tomatoes
  • A few sprigs fresh herbs of choice (rosemary, basil, thyme) or dried herbs to taste
  • 1/2 cup barley
  • 1-1/4 cups dried lima, white kidney, pinto, or other bean or mixed beans of choice (you can use canned beans, if desired)
  • 1 cup whole baby or cubed potatoes
  • 3 chopped carrots
  • 1 cup chopped turnip
  • 1 diced parsnip
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste

View the full printable recipe

Introducing meat-lovers to meatless meals is easy with this tasty loaf which comes out of the oven oozing with a mouth-watering glaze. This dish goes great with fermented beets, a green salad, and a crispy roll on the side. Leftover slices can be sprinkled with flour and fried in olive oil until brown and crispy … every bit as good second time around!

Ingredients:

  • 1-1/2 cups dry green (or brown) lentils
  • 3 cups vegetable stock or water
  • 4 Tbsp ground flaxseed
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 chopped onions
  • 4 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 minced sweet pepper
  • 1 diced jalapeno pepper (optional)
  • 1 stick minced celery
  • 3 grated carrots
  • 1/2 teaspoon each of ground cumin and coriander
  • Pinch of thyme and basil
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 egg (optional, for those who want a firmer loaf)

View the full printable recipe

To prepare the glaze:

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tbsp of ketchup
  • 2 Tbsp of sweet chili sauce
  • 1 Tbsp of honey
  • 1/2 tsp balsamic vinegar

View the full printable recipe

When thick, chewy udon noodles are mixed with colourful stir-fried vegetables, there’s no need to coax the kids to ‘eat up’! They love this dish. The recipe is versatile enough that it also works well with soba (buckwheat) noodles and/or bean-based pastas (for those needing a gluten-free option). Look for udon noodles in health food stores or where Japanese foods are sold.

Ingredients:

  • 14 oz package udon noodles
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 2 large sweet peppers, cut into strips
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, cut into thin rings
  • 2 carrots, julienne cut
  • 1 stick diagonal-cut celery
  • 1 cooking onion, quartered and separated into pieces
  • 1 cup small button mushrooms, or large ones quartered
  • 1 cup small cauliflower florets
  • 1 teaspoon grated ginger root
  • 2 Tbsp soy sauce (low-salt or regular)
  • 2 Tbsp rice wine
  • 1 Tsp sesame oil
  • Sliced green onions, for garnish

View the full printable recipe

Everybody loves pizza and the good news is, you don’t need to weigh it down with meaty toppings to earn big praise at the table! If preferred, you can go gluten-free with a suitable substitute for the all-purpose flour. Makes 1 large thin crust, 1 medium thick crust, or 4 to 6 individual crusts for those who like to top their own any way they wish. (Note: Some stores carry gluten-free pizza shells for those interested.)
To prepare the dough:

Ingredients:

  • 1-1/4 cups warm water
  • 1 envelope (15 ml) instant fast rising yeast
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1-3/4 cups wholewheat flour

View the full printable recipe

Everybody loves pizza and the good news is, you don’t need to weigh it down with meaty toppings to earn big praise at the table! If preferred, you can go gluten-free with a suitable substitute for the all-purpose flour. Makes 1 large thin crust, 1 medium thick crust, or 4 to 6 individual crusts for those who like to top their own any way they wish. (Note: Some stores carry gluten-free pizza shells for those interested.)
To prepare the dough:

Ingredients:

  • 1-1/4 cups warm water
  • 1 envelope (15 ml) instant fast rising yeast
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1-3/4 cups wholewheat flour

Write a Comment

view all comments

Your e-mail address will not be published. Also other data will not be shared with third person. Required fields marked as *