As I mentioned in my Thinking out Loud post a couple weeks ago, I’ve been staying away from meat for the last couple weeks. My foray into meatless eating actually started way back in secondary school when I randomly decided to go vegan and was positive I could do it for the long haul.
Obviously that didn’t happen, but every now and then, I decide to give it a go again, and I’ve found myself doing it more and more often in the last couple years. Going dairy free is actually what encouraged me to give meatless eating a try again, because I figured that if I could give up cheese, something I LOVE, I could survive without meat, something I’ve always been meh about. Anyway, today, I thought I’d share some things I’ve learned about meatless, while sharing some of my recent eats for WIAW.
1. Breakfast is a Breeze
I’ve always loved breakfast of all kinds, but sweet, meat free breakfasts (think pancakes, waffles, granola, oatmeal, french toast) have always been my favourites. So, my breakfasts during periods of meatless eating are not much different from when I am eating meat.
Breakfast: Pumpkin Spice Pancakes topped with fruit and maple syrup
2. Research is important
One of the biggest complaints I’ve heard against meatless eating is the lack of protein that kind of diet. And that’s true, if you have no idea what you’re doing. However, if you dig a little deeper into the nutrient content of different foods, you’ll realise that protein isn’t actually that hard to find. There are so many meat-free sources of protein out there, including nuts, seeds, veggies, beans and more. But, you have to be willing to put in the extra work first.
Snack: Avocado toast and peanut butter toast topped with fruit + a handful of seeds and nuts
3. Fake meat can actually be tasty
Last month, I randomly stumbled upon Gardein’s meatless products and decided to give them a try. I didn’t have high hopes, because I’ve heard some horror stories about fake meat products, but everything I’ve tasted from this company has been freakin amazing so far! I have no idea how they make the taste and texture of their ‘meats’ so real, but I hope they never stop. Because of that, I was inspired to try making these tofu ‘chicken’ tenders, which turned out pretty good. And now I can’t wait to do some more experimenting with meatless ‘meats’.
Meet my newest obsession: @gardein #meatfree crispy tenders ? #bestofvegan pic.twitter.com/cMm7Kq4D0g
— Giselle Rochford (@ExSloth) September 17, 2015
4. It doesn’t have to be all or nothing
Some people avoid meat for health purposes, some for ethical reasons and others because it’s trendy. I’m not here to judge, but I will say that your reason for not eating meat can impact to how your journey will go. For me, it was a mixture of health reasons and general food boredom. I occasionally cut out meat to get myself excited about food again, and in the process I end up eating more veggies. So, I have no problems with keeping eggs in my diet. But, for vegans or people avoiding meat and animal products due to health, the eggs would be a huge no no. The point is, that depending on your reasons for avoiding meat, you can make your own rules for your meatless eating journey.
Lunch: Scrambled eggs, sweet potato & Gardein meatless tenders
5. Cravings can come out of nowhere
I’d never planned to stop eating meat for good, but when the cravings hit, I still tried to ignore them. But, the whole point of this exercise was to get more in touch with my body, food wise, so honouring my cravings was important to me, even if it meant eating meat. I ended up breaking my meat fast on Monday with some sweet potato salmon sliders and they were amazing
Dinner: Sweet potato salmon sliders with avocado
6. It doesn’t have to end there
Even though I’ve reintroduced meat (well fish at least) into my diet, that doesn’t mean I have to stop my meatless eating journey. I fully intend to have a few meatless eating days a week, because I genuinely enjoy the food and how I feel when I eat it. It’s like I said before, don’t feel like it has to be all or nothing. Just do you.
Snack: Oatmeal muffin, fruit, a little peanut butter + some nuts & seeds
What about you?
- Do you eat meat? Have you ever gone meatless?
- Why or why not?
- Any good tofu recipes to share?
Share in the comments below!
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I had Gardein chicken fillets for dinner. They are my favorite, but I pretty much love everything Gardein makes. I think eating less meat is wonderful. It’s better for your health, for the planet, and of course, for the animals.
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Janelle @Wholly Healthy says
I do eat meat but mostly chicken and fish. I do try to do a couple of meatless days out of the week. I find in really helps me incorporate different ingredients into my diet and explore different plant-based proteins.
Tee BOne says
Have you tried Neat meat replacement yet?? It is awesome…whole foods, no chemicals, easy, and tasty. My favorite (& my meat-eating husband’s) is when I make Neat nachos, and runner up is Neat Joe’s (you know the ones that are usually sloppy) 🙂
Even reducing your meat intake by half is better than nothing! I can get about 120 g protein a day without meat or dairy (I include two egg whites and Vega protein powder, but the rest comes from beans and plants!).
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Rebecca @ Strength and Sunshine says
Breakfast is the easiest thing in the world! Since breakfast should always be sweet and carby anyway 😛
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Amanda @ Diary of a Semi-Health Nut says
I definitely like your “it doesn’t have to be all or nothing” perspective. If only more people thought that way!! 🙂 <3
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Dani @ Dani California Cooks says
I love having plant-based proteins for lunch. I found that it helps me from feeling “weighed down” throughout the day!
I also had no idea, but so many plants have proteins in them. Like plants that you wouldn’t even realize had protein!
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Megan @ Skinny Fitalicious says
I recently cut back on my meat intake. It surprised me how much plant based protein I was actually getting and didn’t need animal protein.
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