I find meat to be a little over-rated. About a year ago Noni and I decided we weren't going to buy meat anymore for meals. We aren't vegetarians and we do still eat meat from time to time, especially when we go out to eat, but we decided to not cook with it because,
A. it is expensive and I felt that the cost of meat was the majority of our grocery bill.
B. Ever since we cut down on meat we feel that we have more energy and our bodies are "happier."
After making this decision I thought I would miss meat and it would be quite a noticeable change, but to be honest I don't even realize that it's gone. We eat a lot more veggies, grains, beans etc that are hearty and keep us full and happy.
What are some of our favorite meatless recipes you ask? Well let me indulge you...
1. Risotto with Tomato, Corn, and Basil. This is by far one of my favorite meals. I love creamy risotto and this is so filling and delicious.
2. California Grilled Veggie Sandwich. We make these probably once a month. They are so easy and packed with flavor. You wouldn't think just veggies alone on a sandwich would be enough, but it totally is.
3. Vegetarian Lime Orzo. This is another recipe we make quite frequently. Pasta is always a favorite at our house.
4. Gemelli with Yellow Squash, Peas, and Basil. I was completely surprised by how much I loved this meal. It was so quick and simple to make and we devoured it in minutes.
5. Silky and Creamy Wild Rice Soup. I LOVE chicken and wild rice soup so I searched high and low for the perfect meatless version. This is so yummy but so bad for you. It's got 1/2 cup of butter and like 5 cups of milk but it's so worth it, trust me.
These last few recipes are from my favorite blog meatlessmealsformeateaters.blogspot.com. Miriam is the queen of meatless meals and she posts the most delicious recipes. I also have her cook book that recently came out.
6. Autumn Garden Casserole. Pasta, beans, veggies, cheese. Yum.
7. Italian Spinach Quinoa. This is another recipe that surprised me. I absolutely loved it. It's got a lot of flavor and I may have packed it with a little extra cheese. I love cheese.
8. Butternut Squash and Spinach Pasta. Butternut squash is delish but I absolutely hate dealing with those little buggers. You can't cut them, you can't peel them, it's like pulling teeth. Oh well, this recipe is worth all the hassle.
Oh my. This is making me so hungry.
Try out some of these recipes, you won't even miss the meat.