Thursday, August 28, 2014

The Teenage Vegetarian

Do not be jealous of the burn I got along the vein of my arm (or my my long, blond body hairs or my crumpled double chin – what IS that?).

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You know you are veiny when…. your veins stand out so much from the surface of your arm that they are the first things to burn when you are getting home-made margherita pizza out of the oven. Speaking of margherita pizza, it was good and I used this recipe.

We are eating a bit more meatless and semi meatless around here because guess who decided they were a vegetarian about a month ago?

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No, it’s not Heidi. In fact, Heidi still eats beef, turkey, underwear, other dog’s turds, etc. But, Ms. Emma on the other hand…

I saw this coming over the past six months. We would be sitting at the dinner table eating something, say along the lines of bacon, and Emma would ask, “What animal is this?” I’d tell her it was a pig that tasted really crispy and delicious. She’d ask me if I ever felt bad for eating an animal. I would pause as if I was really thinking about it and tell her, “No, not really.”

Because I like meat. Kind of a lot. I, too, went through a vegetarian phase in my 20s. It involved Doritos and beer for the most part. There is nothing wrong with being veggie, obviously, but I just like meat. I realize that there are health implications to this as well as environmental and ethical issues, but I like meat.

I am fine with Emma being a temporary or permanent vegetarian. As long as she gets her protein and iron and other stuff, it’s okay. What I am not fine with is being a short order cook. That means that on the nights we have meat, she will need to figure out what her substitute will be and make it herself. I told her she needed to do her research to find out which foods are healthy and good sources of protein. For her, this means, eggs, fish (yes she still eats that), beans, quinoa, edamame…she is not a huge tofu fan.

We don't eat a ton of meat, but I do slip it into lots of things (TWSS) – casseroles, tacos, enchiladas, pastas. For the most part, it’s not that tough to keep the meat out of Emma’ s portions.

I do not, however, have a wide repertoire of meatless dishes. These are my few favorite recipes that the whole family actually eats – click on the meal name for full recipe (we go completely meatless at least one to two times per week):

Now it’s your turn. Give me one idea/recipe for a veggie meal that your family will eat (please don’t tell me spaghetti squash is a substitute for pasta and no one knows it is not really pasta because I will CALL YOU OUT).

Oh, and I did run today. Me + 6 miles + Boulder Reservoir = just okay. I felt tired and gassy. Probably too much quinoa.

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Any vegetarians in your house?

SUAR

68 comments:

  1. No vegetarians in our house, but I have certainly heard the same questions and ethical questions from my kids. Yet they aren't always thrilled with our once/week meatless meal. Try Pasta Ratatouille- it's da bomb! Basically just a bunch of sauteed veggies (eggplant, zucchini, heirloom tomatoes, etc) over penne.

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  2. My daughter also went vegetarian on us at one point. The key was to make a variation of what we were eating. I like crispy fried tofu in chili. Soak the tofu in salted water and then pat the tofu dry before you cook it up in oil.

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  3. If you're having steak, she can have "portobella steak" - a big field mushroom, grilled, maybe topped with some pesto or salsa. And then all the side dishes the same. Easy substitute.

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  4. My 17 year old daughter decided to be a fish loving vegetarian several months ago. She is not a good source of recipes or meatless ideas! Today she said she was in the mood for something savory. I asked "like what?" This did not get the answer I was looking for so she ended up making a pot of elbow noodles.

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  5. No vegetarians in our house right now although I have had my phases and suspect my now-10-yr-old will have hers in the next few years. How about eggplant parm? Cobb Salad with no chicken for her just hard boiled eggs? My husband also makes a mean pea soup out of the Moosewood cookbook, we do often add bacon or smoked sausage to it but it is really good without it - lots of potatoes, carrots etc, to give it some serious texture....

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  6. Ziti with Broccoli and garlic. Chop a ton of garlic, fry in olive oil until light brown. Pour over a vat of pasta and steamed broccoli. Top with Romano cheese.

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  7. Thank you for having a wrinkly chin and bulgy veins and liking meat. SUAR you are the bomb. As far as meatless meals - no clue - I love meat too and living in farm country my family pretty much gets it at every meal. Occasionally we will huevos rancheros or eggs like this: http://www.marthastewart.com/872929/baked-eggs-chunky-tomato-sauce
    http://www.closetcooking.com/2011/09/mexican-baked-eggs.html
    Or since she'll still eat fish, how about a rare grilled Tuna steak that is shaped like the star trek emblem? :)
    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10203592278500988&set=a.10202475917352657.1073741830.1036322786&type=1&theater

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  8. I've been a vegetarian for about 44 years and have lots of favorite recipes. If you like Francese, make Vegetable Francese with broccoli, cauliflower and portabello mushrooms. Messy to make but delicious over linguine. I also enjoy the Tofurky roast you can buy and cook with carrots, red potatoes and onions. There is a recipe on the box for a basting sauce. Other favorites are penne in vodka sauce, vegetable fried rice, pierogis, baked stuffed eggplant. Now I'm hungry!

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  9. I joke that I am a "recovering vegetarian" ... gave up meat in college and didn't eat it again for nearly 12 years. I'm totally back on the carnivore bandwagon, however.

    I ate a lot of beans, buying them in bulk and soaking them. Bean casseroles with veggies and spices, white bean soup, rice and beans, lentils, etc. I also learned to love quinoa with veggies and a bit of feta.

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  10. No vegetarians in my house but I have a neighbor that likes to tell us how long it's been since she's eaten meat every time we happen to eat together. What's the deal with that? I don't tell her that I had a vegetable just last night. So weird... Anyway, I grew up Catholic (the original meatless meal makers) so I have lots of recipes! The family favorite is penne with fresh spinach, fresh mozzarella and halved grape tomatoes. A little garlic, kosher salt, and evoo and dinner is served! Sometimes I sprinkle mine with a little balsamic vinegar too. Love that stuff!

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  11. I ate almost vegatarian while studying at uni. It's much cheaper to eat potatoes and beans than it is meat...

    Vege Lasagne is the bomb.
    Layers of:
    -lasagne pasta
    -Tomato sauce (ie, a jar of pasta sauce or homemade like they did in http://www.curtisstone.com/recipe/grilled-vegetable-lasagna-ricotta-tomato-sauce)
    -white/cheese sauce (4 tblsp butter/oil, 4 tbsp flour, cook 1 min, slowly add 1.5 cups milk, whisk or stir constantly to stop lumps over moderate heat, take off heat, stir in 1/2 cup cheese - cheddar, fetta, goats, parmasan or a mix)
    I'm told an alternative to white sauce is to use just ricotta, but I think maybe a half/half of white sauce and ricotta would be better
    -roasted veggies (spray oil, bake in oven, cool so you don't burn) (eggplant, sweet potato and carrot are my favorites, plus whatever is on special/in season, maybe tomatoes, zucchini, spinach, cooked onion)
    Make up into layers and cook that same as regular lasagne.

    Highly recommend dividing cooked vege-lasagne into portions and freezing. It's good.

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  12. I love these sweet potato and black bean tacos: http://shinianen.blogspot.com/2014/02/recipie-delicious-dinner-chipotle-sweet.html

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  13. We grew up vegetarian and ate an enormous amount of beans and rice. I can recommend getting some 15-bean soup (dried) - it's delicious without any meat. When we were growing up, we also ate a lot of grilled vegetables on rice (sometimes with feta cheese) and chili made without meat, just pinto and kidney beans.

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  14. A friend recommended this recipe. I made it and we liked it a lot!

    http://www.halfbakedharvest.com/creamy-caprese-quinoa-bake/

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  15. Check out meatlessmealsformeateaters.blogspot.com for recipe ideas.

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  16. No vegetarians, but I like baked tofu or chickpeas with veggies in a sauce (stir fry, curry (Indian or Thai), peanut sauce, etc - make at home or find stuff at trader joes). Serve over rice.

    Also made mushrooms in barbeque sauce in the slow cooker when we made pulled pork sandwiches.

    I go to all recipes.com and do an ingredient search with vegetarian as a key word and enter key ingredients.

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  17. http://www.acouplecooks.com/2011/07/lentil-tacos/ - totally awesome.

    http://www.hiddenfruitsandveggies.com/2013/09/23/pulled-veggie-sandwich/ - some work, and not a whole lot of protein, but I love them.

    Both blogs are vegetarian ones, so have great ideas.

    Yves Veggie Italian Ground Round is a great tasting ground beef alternative if you have it!

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  18. Hubby is a vego and we live by the same rule that he just has to substitute! However, we do have at least 2 vego meals/ week anyway! A fave with the kids is sweet potato (you may call it kumura) cakes: http://www.taste.com.au/recipes/16253/chickpea+and+sweet+potato+cakes Enjoy!

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  19. i've been veg for a few years. stir fries are a good compromise for my husband the meat eater and i. meat can be cooked separately from the veggies or he can grill up chicken for the week and add it into a bunch of different veg meals. also, good for you for drawing the line on the short order cook business!

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  20. Your blog was a HUGE part of my post today..... thank you!!!!!!!!!!! VERY MUCH!!!!!!

    http://learningselfcontrol.blogspot.com/2014/08/facing-fears.html

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  21. That's exactly how I did it. I never really liked meat and went veg like at 18 or 19. My parents hated it, but it's almost 10 years later and we're still going strong :) :)

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  22. My family is vegetarian (20+ years for me) and here's my advice on tofu: she'll learn to like it if prepared correctly. It took me a long time to figure out what that meant, but here it is: go to Trader Joe's and get their SUPER firm tofu (not just extra, though that will do if you can't find super), marinate in a simple mix of broth and soy sauce (and sesame oil if you want to be fancy; we usually don't have it), slice thin and either pan-fry until crispy on all edges or bake until edges are a little crisped. It's chewy, flavorful, crispy, satisfying, and multi-purpose. She can make a big batch once a week and have it for sandwiches, salads, snacks, or just on a plate.

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  23. Raised by a vegetarian mom and a meat eating dad = I swing both ways. My mom use to make a lot of things like oatmeal patties and cream cheese patties, but the easiest thing for you would probably be to buy some of the meat substitutes made by Gardein or Morningstar and you basically can just use them instead of the meat in your dishes (and definitely easy enough for your daughter to prepare herself). Both are in the frozen section and the Gardein ones are really quite good. One of my favorite vegetarian dishes is basically like a taco salad, but we called them Haystacks. You can just put all the ingredients out on the counter and let everyone make their own according to preference. Start with chips on your plate (fritos and doritos are best), then add veggie chili or baked beans, followed by any/all of the following: corn, cheese, shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes, onion, olives. Then put one (or all) of these on top: salsa, sour cream, guacamole, ranch dressing or hot sauce. We eat them at least once a week in our house.

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    Replies
    1. sounds like there is an adventist in our midst. i love my haystacks! ;)

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  24. No veggies in my household. I actually hate veggies to an extent.

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  25. My husband is vegetarian, and on the nights he is home for dinner, we try to have a vegetarian meal. The kids and I eat mostly meatless. There are tons of pasta dishes, obviously, although they would eat spaghetti every night, given the opportunity. Endless variations of grilled cheese sandwiches (try sautéed onions and cherry tomatoes with goat cheese, or grilled peaches with brie and basil!) Caprese sandwiches.. tomato, fresh mozzarella & basil on ciabatta rolls. Breakfast for dinner is always a hit.. pancakes, french toast, eggs/omelets and toast. Risotto, rice and beans, and tons of Mexican options (fajitas.. use grilled portabello instead of meat; quesadillas; black bean and sweet potato enchiladas; tostadas; bean and rice burritos). A great visual source for vegetarian meals? Pinterest! I also like to use TVP (textured vegetable protein), nutritional yeast, or chia seeds as easy additions to salads.

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  26. I go "veggie" every year or so. My conscious gets the best of me- factory farms, cruelty, etc. Anyway, ohsheglows.com is a great source of recipes. They are vegan recipes but fish or dairy could easily be added :) And have her try nutritional yeast- delish! It isn't yeast really and is awesome on toast.

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  27. I love the recipes on this site http://jessicainthekitchen.com/recipeindex/ I'm the veggo in the family here, my husband is a carnivore, and the teen eats pretty much what I eat and occasionally will ask for more meat. :-)

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  28. Vegetarian, tasty, and quick - http://www.nigella.com/recipes/view/linguine-with-lemon-garlic-and-thyme-mushrooms-24

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  29. Kids that don't eat what's put before them aren't hungry, or are old enough to cook for themselves.

    Why no, I haven't had my coffee yet, why do you ask?

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  30. "I would pause as if I were really thinking about it and say 'No, not really'" ROFL. No vegetarians here, but I only buy organic or humanely raised animals - like grass fed beef or free range chickens. Do these animals live an awesome life until they are killed? No, probably not, but it makes me feel a little better about it. It's almost impossible to find pork that is humanely raised though, so I avoid buying pork.

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  31. we love the potato soup recipe: http://holdermans.blogspot.com/2010/03/best-potato-soup-andys-ever-had.html. You can omit bacon in the soup then sprinkle it on top of your portions. Also I have substituted all milk for the part cream if I don't have it - it's a flexible soup. Great on those winter nights!!

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    1. This sounds DELICIOUS. For some reason, I always have a hard time with potato soups. They never have the right consistency and are gritty rather than creamy. I'll have to try this one!

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  32. Try Scott Jurek's chili! It doesn't have any of that awful fake meat or any of that crap and it is really good!
    http://m.humanesociety.org/issues/eating/recipes/soups/chili_winter_minnesota.html

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  33. Big Veg right here. This is one of my favorites from Thug Kitchen: http://thugkitchen.com/post/55808197830/clear-room-on-the-grill-for-these-stuffed-sons-of

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  34. We're not vegetarians, but we like to go meatless a couple of times a week. Homemade black bean burgers are my favorite (http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/black-bean-burgers-with-mango-salsa-10000001973642/) and these potatoes are amazing (http://lizscookingblog.blogspot.com/2008/06/spinach-and-feta-potatoes.html). Bon appetit!

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  35. I have been a vegetarian since the age of 13, and grew up in a household with a non-short-order-cook mother too. So I prepared my own meals many nights too. One quick and easy recipe she could make herself- 1 can of black beans with liquid, one can of corn, drained. Put this in a skillet with a bit of brown sugar to taste, and red pepper flakes to taste. Cook it down so it thickens up, you can eat it like that with a side of rice (makes for complete protein meal), or add some cheese and salsa and make it into a burrito. A recipe I invented is for quinoa stuffed chilies- prepare your quinoa according to package instructions; saute some diced onion and garlic, then add corn, diced tomato and your quinoa, just until the quinoa is a bit browned but still tender. Take your roasted and skinned chilies, either poblano or regular anaheim (I have also used bell peppers) and stuff them with the quinoa mixture, you can add cheese on top if you want, bake at 350 for 15 minutes or so, serve with salsa or whatever toppings you want. Also, morning star farms makes a texturized soy protein that you can easily make veggie tacos out of by using your regular spices.

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  36. You've got a lot of feedback already so I'll just share one of my favs:
    Trader Joe's Mandarin "Chicken" Tenders (not chicken, obviously), combined with their frozen veggie & quinoa mix, which is just various squashes, diced, with plain quinoa and seasoning. Cook them following the stove-top directions in separate pans, then bring together to finish with a little teriyaki (sp?) or other favorite sauce. I'll sometimes add this spicy garlic ginger sauce if I'm just making it for me.

    And KUDOS to you for getting your girl on some healthy dishes! I was a pizza and ice cream vegetarian as a teenager. My parents' support was, "Well, steak is what we have for dinner... so if you don't want that you can have whatever you find in the freezer." :-D

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  37. Our favorite pasta dish is bowtie pasta. Top with sliced cherry tomatoes, arugula, fresh parm, pine nuts (or sunflower seeds=cheaper) and drizzle w/ olive oil and a nice balsamic. So easy and you can always add chicken or fish for those that want it.
    Tilapia rolled in pankos, sprinkle with paprika, s&p and bake. We love this dish w/ roasted brussel sprouts that are topped w/ fresh parm and balsamic.

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  38. I became a vegetarian when I was in high school and still living at home. My mom bought a few veggie cook books and we tried a new recipe about once a week, and the rest of the time it was just like you -- this is what we're having for dinner. If you don't want it, make something else.

    I'm still veggie ten years later :) I'm too poor to make real recipes too often -- I also live alone, so I'm always cooking for one -- but my fiance (a meat eater) and I both like this one -- http://www.thecomfortofcooking.com/2013/02/spicy-roasted-vegetable-macaroni-and-cheese.html. I load it up with veggies so it's about half veggie, half pasta -- added corn and cauliflower last time. I also have a pinterest board with a very small number of pins about becoming/being a healthy vegetarian. http://www.pinterest.com/googlepants/being-vegetarian/

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  39. I like chili without beans and add some different beans besides just kidney as well.

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  40. I watched a bunch of documentaries on food a few weekends ago and they basically say if you are eating food you are getting enough protein. Interesting concept.

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  41. We are not vegetarians, but we don't eat any factory-farmed meat (so only local, sustainable, hormone -free, organic feed, etc.). That meat is more expensive, so we limit our meat eating to about 2x a week. Here are two recipes we love: Bean Burrito Casserole: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Bean-Burrito-Casserole-13572
    And angel hair frittata: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Angel-Hair-Frittata-2086

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  42. We all love lentil tacos (or taco salad or lentil nachos). The key us using the french green lentils from Whole Foods...they hold their shape.

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  43. I am a vegetarian and the rest of my family is not. I find stir fry and make your own taco/burrito are a great way to let everyone make what they like.

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  44. I've made breakfast burritos with sweet potatoes and black beans (+ a little chili powder and cumin), and they were yummy. I did a veggie challenge, and I ate a lot of lentils. Indian-spiced lentils. Mexican lentils. Lentil soup. It was all pretty good. I used to do meatless Monday, too, but it usually meant we ate pasta or white pizza.

    Has Emma tried tempeh? It's a good alternative with different flavors available as opposed to tofu.

    And there's always Cheerios with Protein? (Seriously, it might be the most WTF item in the grocery).

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  45. I'm the only vegetarian in the house. Although my husband will eat meatless meals, he eats them as a side dish and will add some kind of meat. The only meat substitute that he likes is the Morning Star Sausage Patties. No substitute links, or fake bacon, only the patties.

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  46. Hooray for encouraging your daughter to eat healthy veggie meals! I went vegan when I was 15 years old and if my father hadn't been a dietician, I'm certain I would have eaten nothing but ramen and pb&j sandwiches before I left home.

    Field Roast makes fantastic grain-based sausages and burgers, you can find them at Whole Foods.

    Running on Veggies (http://www.runonveg.com/) and the Vegan Stoner (http://theveganstoner.blogspot.com/) have great vegetarian recipe ideas, and the Vegan RD (http://www.theveganrd.com/food-guide-for-vegans) is a good resource if you're concerned about protein, iron, and other nutrients.

    My favorite recipe right now is probably this pad thai: http://www.theppk.com/2013/09/everyday-pad-thai/

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  47. Scott Jurek's book "Eat and Run" has really good recipes (and is a fantastic read). His lentil, mushroom and walnut veggie burgers are a-MAZ-ing. I don't eat much meat anyway but my husband the carnivore actually requests these! They are kind of a pain to make, but freeze well so I make a huge batch at once. And contrary to Jurek's vegan ways, I serve with a slice of cheese :)

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  48. THESE. http://www.thegardengrazer.com/2012/03/black-bean-spinach-enchiladas.html They are amazing.

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  49. I was vegan for 5 years and now I am vegetarian. There are SO many dishes you can try as a veg. A good resource for your daughter is vegweb.com, which lists so many ideas.

    We eat a lot of pasta in our household. There are two dishes my meat-eating husband loves: chili and beef stew.

    Chili: use vegetable broth and lots of beans. Everything else is basically the same as any other type of chili (minus the meat) and you can use a crockpot for it.
    Beef stew: potatoes, onion, beef tips (Gardein brand), vegetable broth, carrots and seasonings in a crockpot. It's yummy and my husband always tries to eat all of it before I get any!

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  50. For breakfast/snack/dessert I'll eat fat free cottage cheese (or vanilla greek yogurt) with frozen blueberries and dry oatmeal mixed in, and then I drizzle pancake syrup on top. Delicious! It's a good way to get in protein, fruit, a whole grain, and satisfy your sweet tooth. :)

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  51. Sounds like you hit all of the major ones. My first thought was eggs, potatoes and avicado with a a tortilla... I LOVE THAT DISH, but mine usually has a meat product, like sausage to bring it home (but there are veggie sausage thingys, right? eh?).

    The baby girl is hit or miss on meat (we call it meat, whether it's chicken, beef, pork - have some "meat") and I always wonder if she wants to be a vegetarian... i'm hoping my 3 year old just tells me if she is... but then she'll ask for fish sticks.

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  52. Have you tried extra firm (ha) tofu? I cut out meat about four months ago and have found that with the right sauce, tofu can be good. Google General Tso's Tofu. It tastes like Chinese food!

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  53. Totally checking out Thai peanut quinoa bowls".

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  54. My picky eater kids love ginger carrot soup and blackbean & cheese quesadillas with guac. I'll definitely check out the quinoa bowls and pinto bean burger recipes you shared. Thanks for posting.

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  55. check out "fatfreevegan" for easy, healthy, and delicious.

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  56. Thanks for some great recipes. I am not a vegetarian but do like to make meatless dishes due to time. I use a lot of Boca meatless crumbles instead of ground beef or the Morningstar Farms chicken strips as a substitute in chicken enchiladas. I find the soy substitutes taste fine if they can soak up the other flavors in the recipe.
    One of my favorite/easy crockpot recipes is taco soup (the original is made with beef broth and browned ground beef).

    Taco Soup
    Mix all ingredients in a crockpot and cook on low for 6-8 hours
    3 cups vegetable broth/stock
    one packet low sodium taco seasoning
    1 can Rotel diced tomatoes or Mexican diced tomatoes
    1 can vegetarian refried beans
    1 small can diced green chilies
    1 can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
    1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
    1 small onion, diced
    1/2 a bag of Boca meatless crumbles
    You can also make this on the stove top in a large pot and simmer for 30 minutes.
    It's great with tortilla chips or crusty bread. A good wintertime soup.

    I make your crock pot chicken tacos a lot. In fact, I have leftovers in the refrigerator right now!

    Kim S.

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  57. My sister is a vegetarian and has been for 4 years. She is a huge soup person, along with bagels and bread, which just got tough because she might have a gluten intolerance, so she is trying out a gluten free lifestyle. She eats a TON of fruit, but she has to really watch protein - I don't think she gets enough.

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  58. I think it's great that you're supporting your daughter in this. I've never enjoyed meat but was forced to eat it as a kid. I'm vegetarian as an adult and have never been happier or healthier. Try making homemade veggie burgers. There are tons of recipes out there, make a large batch, freeze them & just take one out as needed!

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  59. I'm vegan, and my favourite cookbook is Isa Does It by Isa Chandra Moskowitz. Full of really delicious recipes that don't take hours to prepare. My husband and our three-year-old are omnivores, so we all eat vegan food for dinner, and they eat animal bits whenever they want for other meals. When I was a teenage pescetarian I had the same deal with my mum that you two have. Worked very well!

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  60. I was vegetarian for 13 years and then vegan for 2.. what the hell was I thinking? I have since recovered, but I did get myself a hearty B12 deficiency that has taken a few years to rectify. So, if she really decides to go veg, be sure she is supplementing B12. Also, I would recommend steering clear of the "meat analogs," just read the ingredients once and you'll see what I mean. Anyhow, a vegetarian dish that I still make and love is portobello burgers. Marinate the mushrooms if ya want, but it's not necessary. Salt and bake until they're tender, and then top with blue cheese and caramelized onions. The amount of umami flavor of a portobello is truly meat like.

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  61. I was vegetarian for over 20 years and went vegan about 4 years ago. My daughter has been vegetarian for 10 years (she's 24). I also get a lot of my recipes from Isa (mentioned above) and online like vegweb, vegnews, oh she glows, the daily garnish and for delish healthy desserts have your daughter check out chocolate covered katie. There are a lot of single serving recipes too. I applaud your daughter and you for supporting her. Being vegetarian or vegan is not a disease and does not need "recovering" from nor chastising.

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  62. I went through a vegan phase (I now eat primarily paleo and feel waaaay better, but that's another story). One of my favorite things to make was this pizza... All trader joes items: whole wheat pizza dough, pizza sauce, shredded soy cheese, soy chorizo (crumbed) and cilantro... It might sound a little questionable, but it's quite delicious. Give your daughter a big thumbs up for making a change that makes her feel better about what she's eating!

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  63. ha! I'm waiting for the day when my girls decide they are vegetarian! or vegan. Or gluten free! I think I'll roll with it since I'm very non opinionated about food. So go with the flow!! Did I say in my last post that I missed your posts?? Well... I do! I'm glad to read you again Beth!

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  64. Please don't worry about her getting protein. Protein is in everything - vegetables, grains, beans, nuts, seeds, even fruit - and of course soy, tofu, tempeh, etc. No one is protein deficient unless they are starving. There are world-class athletes who are vegans, so an average teenage girl will be just fine. She'll get all the protein she needs without the fat and cholesterol that she doesn't. I get my B12 through soy milk, cereal, and other fortified foods, but you can give her a B12 vitamin once a week if you want. Thank you for supporting her in this. She doesn't want to cause needless pain and suffering --- it's a GOOD thing. Tell her to read about the dairy industry. Those mama cows suffer longer & worse than the animals used for meat, while also creating the sad veal industry. Good luck, Emma! Also, check out The Vegan Zombie website, cookbook, and You Tube channel. Kids love these guys. All the best, ---AJ.

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