Author Topic: A Full And Balanced Vegetarian Meal, can anyone give me ideas?  (Read 4976 times)

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snowdragon

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I am a happy carnivore....meaning I don't normally eat too many vegetables or fruits, in fact  avoid them if I can,  ::). However, I am trying to eat healthier and incorporate more vegetarian style meals in my diet. There in lies the problem, I don't know how to balance a meal so that I am not hungry again shortly after eating.

 What I had last night was

Couscous with mixed veggies, walnuts and raisins  ( main dish)

spinach salad with cashews and strawberries and maple vinaigrette dressing.

and frozen yogurt for desert


I was hungry about an 1.5 hour and a half later.


can anyone give me some ideas about what I am missing and why I am hungry so soon afterwards?


If this is in the wrong place I apologize.

Moray

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Re: A Full And Balanced Vegetarian Meal, can anyone give me ideas?
« Reply #1 on: July 12, 2012, 01:31:41 PM »
It looks like you could use a bit more protein. I like to incorporate beans or quinoa or the like.
Utah

Nika

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Re: A Full And Balanced Vegetarian Meal, can anyone give me ideas?
« Reply #2 on: July 12, 2012, 01:39:50 PM »
I am a vegetarian living with a carnivore, and we've actually found plenty of things that work well for both of us. For example...

How about vegetarian pizza? If you go thin crust, don't go overboard on the cheese, and load it with veggies it really isn't an unhealthy choice.

We made some fantastic veggie quesadillas the other day. Saute up a whole bunch of veggies (mushrooms, zucchini, onion, bell pepper, etc) then add a little salsa. To make the quesadilla, use the fajita sized flour tortillas, using two tortillas per quesadilla. Butter one side of each torilla (I use a lower fat margarine, personally). Put first one butter side down on a baking sheet, spoon a whole bunch of the veggies on, top with the second tortilla butter side up. (To be a real quesadilla, of course, you need to add cheese, but I skipped it on mine and found that the tortillas were so rich that I didn't miss the cheese.)
Put in a hot oven (can't recall what we set it at - maybe 400) for about ten minutes (we just eyeballed it and pulled them out when they looked crispy). You can top with heated up salsa, sour cream or guac if so desired.
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cicero

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Re: A Full And Balanced Vegetarian Meal, can anyone give me ideas?
« Reply #3 on: July 12, 2012, 02:09:27 PM »
while i agree that you are probably lacking a more substantial protein, it may be a question of getting used to the lighter meals.

for the beginning, at least, it might be easier for you to try and stick to a more "veg meats and potato" type meal (or whatever typical meal you eat) and then slowly move to a more "real" vegetarian meal. also, i don't know if you are already doing this, but try and use whole grains and not white for your carbs

so for example, have whole grain couscous, vegetables, and a fake chicken patty. or fake meat balls in homemade tomato sauce over whole grain pasta. or grilled fake sausage with roast potato. add a nice salad to each meal and you are set. as time goes on, and you get used to eating healthier meals (whole grains and more veg and fruit), you can try adding beans and lentils as your protein i/o the fake meat.


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WillyNilly

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Re: A Full And Balanced Vegetarian Meal, can anyone give me ideas?
« Reply #4 on: July 12, 2012, 02:17:43 PM »
Ok way too little protein, especially if you are coming off a protein rich diet!

Try adding beans, [low fat] cheese, egg, whole grains (quinoa, oats, brown rice, wheat berry) to your meal.  Seems like you only had a few handful of nuts (which are good, but to get all your protein from nuts would way too much fat) and some froyo as your protein, and refined grains (couscous) as your grain sources. 

You also might want to cut back on the sugar a bit (strawberry and raisins are both exceptionally high in sugar, as are many vinaigrettes, especially one called "maple") as it will spike your blood sugar then have you crash in an hour or two, resulting in loss of energy... which often triggers hunger.

WillyNilly

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Re: A Full And Balanced Vegetarian Meal, can anyone give me ideas?
« Reply #5 on: July 12, 2012, 02:23:40 PM »
Couscous with mixed veggies, walnuts and raisins  ( main dish)
Next time how about rice & beans, with veggies mixed in (pepper, onion, carrot, and spinach are all classic add ins to rice & beans)
Or quiona with walnuts and cranberries, veggies on the side


spinach salad with cashews and strawberries and maple vinaigrette dressing.
Next time add some goat cheese and try a non-sugary dressing, like a balsamic vinegrette

and frozen yogurt for desert
If you cut out the nuts and raisins from the grain course (the rice & beans for example), try topping your froyo with slivered almonds and fresh fruit (frozen, unsweetened fruit, chopped and defrosted makes a nice syrupy type topping with nothing else added just fruit in its own defrosted juices) to make it more filling

O'Dell

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Re: A Full And Balanced Vegetarian Meal, can anyone give me ideas?
« Reply #6 on: July 12, 2012, 03:08:19 PM »
When I decided to become a vegetarian, I used Diet for a Small Planet to educate myself and to ease myself into it. It explains what foods are high in protein and protein complements. At one time it was thought to be essential to eat protein complements (foods that combined have all the amino acids you need) in one meal or day. That's since been proven to not be true, but it still helped me to put together meals that were more satisfying.

I'm unsure why you really want to eat more vegetarian as part of eating more healthy when you seem more interested in adding plant based foods.. I found for myself that it was easier to slowly transition and for me that meant finding meals and foods that worked for me and eating vegetarian 1 day a week and then slowly adding days until it was full time. Would going more slowly go better for you? Maybe cutting back on meat and getting used to a more varied diet and then "weaning" yourself from the meat portion.

I eat the fake meat products sometimes too. Morningstar farms are pretty tasty. Non-vegetarians turned me onto them.
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audrey1962

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Re: A Full And Balanced Vegetarian Meal, can anyone give me ideas?
« Reply #7 on: July 12, 2012, 03:11:24 PM »
I am vegan. Like you, I would probably be hungry after your dinner. If my meal does not include some type of protein, I usually add a slice of whole wheat bread/pita with hummus or nut butter.

I find beans very filling, and I love hummus.
Some examples of more filling meals: chili with three beans, ratatouille with white beans, sweet and sour cabbage with kidney beans, black bean tacos, falafel with hummus, pasta in dozens of different ways, Thai peanutbutter rice, gnocchi with pesto. And every once in a while, I throw a "vegan grillers" on the grill, toast a hamburger bun, and make some potato "chips" (baked, not fried).

Also: lentils

I have been very satisified with the cookbooks by Donna Klein. Here's my favorite recipe:
http://books.google.com/books?id=oc7oLmAoHEYC&pg=PT191&lpg=PT191&dq=donna+klein+Gratin+of+Macaroni+Tomatoes+Basil+and+Olives&source=bl&ots=CqM1ErgtPm&sig=7gAV4GOA0PAQpQSAOFJFBTSMGEI&hl=en&sa=X&ei=Ux3_T7qcMYrErQHS36yLCQ&ved=0CFcQ6AEwAg#v=onepage&q=donna%20klein%20Gratin%20of%20Macaroni%20Tomatoes%20Basil%20and%20Olives&f=false

If you're not used to all those fruits and veggies, I recommend starting with pasta, as you are probably used to it and have had pasta with marinara in the past. If you eat dairy, try cheese ravioli, macaroni and cheese, or vegetarian lasagna. Also, many Asian dishes are vegetarian, so if you are used to eating that style cuisine, try those vegetarian dishes, too. And of course, there's all the delicious Mediterranean food: Greek salads, spinach pies, ghallaba, mujadra, etc.

Feel free to PM me if you wish.
« Last Edit: July 12, 2012, 03:31:08 PM by audrey1962 »

Xandraea

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Re: A Full And Balanced Vegetarian Meal, can anyone give me ideas?
« Reply #8 on: July 12, 2012, 03:13:17 PM »
If you like eating meat, I see no reason to go fully vegetarian.  Meat is good protein. Vegetables to the exclusion of meat is not necessarily healthier.  It's more a matter of balancing the protein, carb and vegetable, along with a little of a good fat. (Yes, the right fat is good for you!)

1. Start with 4 oz of protein.
2. There are lots of veggies that you can eat in "unlimited" amounts: Broccoli, asparagus, kale, spinach, romaine, celery among them.
3. Toss in some good fat: almonds, 1/4 cup cottage cheese, a bit of butter to sauté the veggies in, olive oil, peanut butter, 2T cream cheese

Eat 3 balanced meals a day, and 2 snacks (same proportions as meals but half-size). A small snack before bed may help as well.

Also, be sure to drink lots of good ol' H2O  .. 64 oz of water a day is recommended. (And do-able, though you may have to work up to it if it's not already a habit.)

I started eating like this and I couldn't believe how much food I was supposed to eat (and to lose weight, even!) I like meat so it's what I eat. If you wish to go without, replace the meat with equivalent non-meat protein. (Vegetarians would be more helpful with suggestions there) Protein is the key to feeling satisfied till the next meal.

Example Day:

Meal 1: 2 Eggs, 12 spears asparagus, 2Tbsp butter to sauté it all in

Snack 1: Small protein shake (1/4C plain full-fat yogurt, 1/2C frozen fruit, 1T coconut milk, whey protein powder)

Meal 2: 4oz turkey, 2C Kale or Romaine, 1/4 c onion, 2Tbsp dressing (vinegar/oil is yum!)

Snack 2: 2 oz beef jerky (look for the good stuff, no nitrates/nitrites), 1/2 apple with 1Tbsp peanut butter

Meal 3: 4oz Chicken breast, 2C broccoli, sautéd in a bit of butter, with seasonings of your choice

Snack 3: 1/2 c Raspberries with 2Tbsp whipped cream (whip your own if you can, then you're in control of how sweet you make it. I like to add cinnamon to mine!)


While I was writing this, WillyNilly made some excellent suggestions. I love her dessert option!
Beware of "low-fat" and "diet" versions of anything. Often things are added to create the flavor removed with the fat/sugar, and the replacements are worse than what was removed.

Quinoa is excellent. You can buy it on its own ready-to-cook, or, Trader Joe's has a frozen quinoa with some veggies mixed in. A quick heat-up in the microwave and you've got half your meal! TJ's also has excellent jerky, and a whole aisle of various nuts.
« Last Edit: July 12, 2012, 03:14:59 PM by Xandraea »

Nika

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Re: A Full And Balanced Vegetarian Meal, can anyone give me ideas?
« Reply #9 on: July 12, 2012, 03:17:39 PM »
^
^

Trader Joe's is awesome for vegetarians/vegans. If you go there, look at the front of the packaging: vegetarian items are marked with a plant symbol, and vegan items are marked with a V. It's nice to not have to pour over the ingredients to check for hidden chicken broth/dairy/egg/what have you.
"I am, in fact, a hobbit in all but size."

WillyNilly

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Re: A Full And Balanced Vegetarian Meal, can anyone give me ideas?
« Reply #10 on: July 12, 2012, 03:48:10 PM »
While I was writing this, WillyNilly made some excellent suggestions. I love her dessert option!
Beware of "low-fat" and "diet" versions of anything. Often things are added to create the flavor removed with the fat/sugar, and the replacements are worse than what was removed.

Aww shucks!

No but seriously this is great advice!  And its not just prepared foods.  Check out low fat or part skim ricotta cheese sometime.  Many of the options (the major brands no less!) add corn starch to it as a way of reducing the overall dairy fat of the product while keeping it thick and creamy.  Corn starch in ricotta cheese!  Let me assure you corn is not a regular ingredient in cheese!  Cheese should be dairy (milk or cream) and enzymes, and maybe some salt.  I've actually found the grocery store brands to better in this regard most times (whoohoo save money and eat better).

snowdragon

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Re: A Full And Balanced Vegetarian Meal, can anyone give me ideas?
« Reply #11 on: July 12, 2012, 08:40:35 PM »
Thank you all so much! I am not going totally vegetarian, but I am going to be adding two days of no meat to my diet.  I love my meat, don't get me wrong, but I think change and expanding my palate is good in more ways than just nutritionally. :D

camlan

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Re: A Full And Balanced Vegetarian Meal, can anyone give me ideas?
« Reply #12 on: July 12, 2012, 09:18:54 PM »
Fat makes you feel full. And keeps you feeling full. So don't necessarily go for the low-fat version of everything you eat. With meat, the protein usually comes with its own fat, which is why you might stay "full" longer after a meat meal.

A handful of nuts can be enough good fat to keep you from getting hungry right away. Or a bit of full-fat Greek yogurt. Or olive oil with a bit of good vinegar for your salad dressing.
Nothing is impossible, the word itself says, “I’m possible!” –Audrey Hepburn

blarg314

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Re: A Full And Balanced Vegetarian Meal, can anyone give me ideas?
« Reply #13 on: July 12, 2012, 09:38:21 PM »


You need to replace the filling bulk of the meat in a way that makes you feel satisfied, and that gives you enough protein.

Filling veggie things include legumes and beans (including chickpeas, lentils, beans), whole grains rather than refined (brown or black rice, whole oats, soba, millet, whole wheat products), nuts, tofu, whole potatoes.

Things like eggs and cheese are also filling, but not necessarily wildly different health wise from the meat they are substituting. Cheese, for example, can be very high in fat and therefore calories.

It sounds like what you are trying to do is both decrease meat, *and* increase vegetables, so you're changing your diet from two directions at once.  An alternate way you could approach your goal is to decrease the portion size of meat, and at the same time increasing the amount of whole grains and vegetables in your in the meal.

Venus193

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Re: A Full And Balanced Vegetarian Meal, can anyone give me ideas?
« Reply #14 on: July 12, 2012, 09:54:59 PM »
I also vote for beans.  They are incredibly versatile and can be eaten cold as well.

Cold Noodles with Sesame Sauce also works.  My recipe is in this thread:

http://www.etiquettehell.com/smf/index.php?topic=117978.msg2746543#msg2746543