Recently my dear friend Anne asked for some tips for vegan meal planning, so I thought I’d share what I came up with. While preparing healthy meals may not be as fast as the drive through, you don’t have to spend hours chopping, stirring, and washing dishes either. We are busy people! You can do what’s expedient without sacrificing the wholesomeness—I’m all about making big quantities, because leftovers are efficient as well as delicious.
So, first things first: breakfast!
1. “Quick-cook” oatmeal is my mainstay, with cinnamon, a dollop of maple syrup, and nut or coconut milk. Extras I love: chia seeds and/or goji berries (found a great price for them online). Stir them in near the beginning so they cook along with the oats. You can also do raisins, walnuts, slivered almonds…whatever you want! Oatmeal has 5g of protein per serving (and I generally have two servings), and that’s not even counting the extras.
2. Good for summer (and also if you are trying to minimize gluten intake)—I posted a recipe for chia breakfast pudding on the blog awhile back.
3. I haven’t tried making my own granola yet, but my friend Jill has made batches for gifts and I really love it. Here’s a recipe round-up at Oh She Glows (great blog!!)
4. I sometimes do a smoothie for breakfast—I don’t get too fancy, bare minimum is a ripe banana + cinnamon + almond/coconut milk. Additions: fresh or frozen fruit, avocado, hemp protein powder, flax oil. Spinach, spirulina, etc. too. You can also pick up a bottle of probiotic (use 1 tbsp per serving), which will make the smoothie taste more yogurt-y and give you the same gastrointestinal benefits.
If you have more time, like for a Sunday morning brunch, I also absolutely love this recipe for a corn-crusted mushroom and tofu with fresh sage (I don’t worry about the almond meal, although that would be good for protein) and this recipe for pumpkin pie pancakes (using coconut oil).
When all else fails, a piece of fresh fruit and a handful of nuts will keep you going until lunchtime (and if it doesn’t, have a second helping of nuts!)
Next time: lunch and dinner!