- Mar 30, 2023
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30-Day Vegan Meal Plan: A Guide For Beginners
Unfortunately, some people who cut out animal products from their diet end up eating highly processed foods instead; it is important when following a vegan diet that you focus on whole food that is nutrient rich, including a variety of beans and legumes, nuts, seeds, whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats. This ensures a nutritious diet to avoid health problems.
Developing meal plans and doing weekly or monthly meal prep is a great way to make sure you stick to a healthy diet. Ensure you are eating a healthy diet, reduce the work week meal hassle, and save time and money. Our easy vegan meal plan will help you get started.
Plan Ahead For Healthy Meals To Stick To Your Vegan Diet
Avoid food waste, save money and time, and avoid the temptation of vegan fast food that has no nutritional value. With meal planning, you can develop a grocery list with everything you need, and get healthy food ready to go for the week ahead. A vegan meal plan helps you stick to your goals of eating a vegan diet and maximizing the healthy benefits it can offer.
Always make sure you have staples on hand for your meal prep. Also, if you don't have enough, be sure to add freezer bags, glass and other storage containers to your shopping list.
Tips For Meal Prep
Meal planning may seem like hard work at first, but it gets easier as you get used to it. Deciding on your menu ahead helps with shopping, and you can prepare for multiple meals that have the same ingredients at the same time.
Brown Rice and Other Whole Grains
Whole grain rice is better than instant and white rice, but it does take longer. Save time and cook a large batch to freeze, storing in freezer bags in just the right amounts for a meal. Cooked quinoa can be kept like this, as well.
Frozen peas, spinach, and more are handy to have for vegetables that last more than a few weeks or even just days. However, many veggies can be bought fresh and chopped ahead of time to speed up dinner time.
Keep breakfast simple, but start your day off right. Here are some ideas to add enough variety to your mornings.
Overnight oats or quinoa are hassle-free and packed with nutrition. Simply mix oats, quinoa, chia seeds, or other grains with almond milk or other non-dairy milk and leave overnight. Add fruit, peanut butter, nuts, seeds like sunflower seeds, or anything else for variety! To meal prep for the week, add the dry ingredients into a mason jar, so you just need to add the nut milk and other add-ins the night before.
Vegan breakfast cookies or muffins make for quick breakfasts on the go, like these blueberry muffins from PETA, which is even more delicious with peach bellini jam!
Mix up the dry ingredients for vegan pancakes (you can use your favourite recipe, using non-dairy milk, and ground flax with a little warm water for the egg substitute). You can then quickly cook them and serve with a little maple syrup for a hearty breakfast.
Tofu scramble can be prepared ahead and reheated easily. Sauté crumbled, firm tofu with nutritional yeast, Dijon mustard, plant based milk, with a little garlic, turmeric, and your favourite seasonings for a few minutes in extra virgin olive oil, and serve with hash browns.
A smoothie with frozen grapes or berries, avocado, leafy greens, bananas, flax, peanut butter or almond butter, vegan cacao nibs, and other variations can be portioned ahead of time and put in the freezer to blend whenever you need. You can add plant based protein powder, too, for a boost of protein.
Here are some lunch ideas for work or home.
A PB&J can be elevated with whole wheat bread, peanut butter and an upscale jam like blueberry gin fizz.
For an extra-easy lunch, healthy vegan soups that are ready to heat and serve, without being heavily processed, like our vegan green goddess or black garlic cauliflower and ginger carrot soups. These are excellent for a nutritious lunch that doesn't require any meal prep.
Ingredients for a protein bowl can be chopped and assembled mostly ahead, along with other meal prep.
Leftover tofu scramble, black beans, and veggies warmed in a tortilla is an easy, filling lunch.
Quinoa, vinaigrette dressing, and veggies make for a well-balanced, packable lunch.
Don't forget about snacks. Make sure you have healthy snacks available that are quick and easy, to help you stick with your plant based eating.
Air popped popcorn can be made in the microwave in a paper bag or casserole dish with a lid.
Trail mix, crackers with jam or nut butters, fresh fruit, or vegetable sticks with hummus are good to have on hand, too.
For a dinner that is ready in just a few minutes, you can either double quantities of a casserole or other dish that you are making, like this vegan chicken pot pie and freeze one for another day, or chop all vegetables ahead and cook certain items ahead of time in larger quantities, so you have everything ready to go for the week.
Make kale and gnocchi cauliflower and ginger carrot soup and Moroccan lentil sweet potato stew ahead of time, or double the quantities to freeze for later, for an easy dinner that just needs reheating when you are strapped for time.
Whole grain pasta with butternut squash sauce is a comfort food favourite that just takes minutes. Different pastas, sauces, and homemade or store-bought vegan meatballs offer versatile meals. You can even make mac and cheese, with cashew cream and nutritional yeast.
A quinoa bowl with roast veggies like red onion, kale, sweet potato, and bell peppers, plus toasted nuts and a balsamic dressing is quick if you have planned ahead and have the veggies pre-chopped and the quinoa pre-cooked. You can use whatever is on hand and prepped.
With prepped veg, this thai green curry ramen is another quick meal.
Leftover veg can be used in a stir-fry with slices of shitake mushroom.
Roasted sweet potato and black bean tacos are fun and filling. The sweet potato and bean filling, with taco seasoning, can be prepared and cooked ahead and then frozen, ready to be served with salsa, tomatoes, and other fixings.
Vegetarian chili, with a variety of beans, mushrooms, onion, tomatoes, corn, garlic and spices is perfect cooked slowly in the crockpot while you are working, and also freezes well.
If you are looking for more inspiration for lunch or dinner, there are other simple and delicious recipes from La Dee Da.