One of the most common questions we are asked when people hear we are vegan is, “What in the world do you eat?” This is usually accompanied by “I wouldn’t have any idea how to feed my family if we were vegan.” There is an underlying assumption that vegans only eat tofu, meat substitutes, and that being vegan is very complicated, full of strange and exotic foods that no one has ever heard of. While it’s true that we eat some foods that aren’t on the average person’s plate and require going to a special health food store, more often than not we eat foods that anyone could find at their local grocery store. In fact, some of our favorites can be found straight from the garden.
Some of our favorites are these combinations:
- Black eyed peas, collard greens, and roasted potatoes (we like to add hot sauce to our collard greens)
- Pinto beans with vegetables (example: sauteed onions/zucchini/yellow squash, and corn on the cob)
- Vegan Pot Roast (large portabella mushroom caps with potatoes, onions, and carrots) with a side of green beans
- Garden Vegetable Plate (pick from the garden, cook as needed, and eat)
Black Eyed Peas, Collard Greens, and Potatoes
Cook black eyed peas according to instructions on the bag (of dried beans). For extra flavor, cook them in vegetable broth (or no-chicken broth). Wash collard greens and tear into bite size pieces, and cook in water with a little bit of oil until done (but still green). Wash and cut potatoes into cubes (or larger if you prefer). Combine potatoes with enough oil to cover, salt, and seasonings of your choice (we use Italian seasonings and paprika). Roast potatoes in oven safe dish on 400F for 45 minutes or until well roasted.
Pinto Beans with Vegetables
Cook pinto beans according to instructions on the bag. For more flavor, cook with vegetable broth (or no-chicken broth). Select vegetables of your choice to cook along side and serve. In the above photo, we cooked onions, yellow squash, and zucchini squash in a small amount of oil until barely soft. We also served along with left-over pot roast vegetables (onions, potatoes, and carrots, and green beans).
Vegan Pot Roast
One of the things I have always loved about a pot roast is that you just cut up the veggies and throw it in the crock pot. It basically cooks itself. The same is true of a vegan pot roast.
- 4 portabella mushroom caps
- vegan beef broth bouillon cubes or better than bouillon mixed with 3 cups water
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 5 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1-2 Tbsp Italian seasoning
- 1 onion, cut in large pieces
- 5 carrots, cut in large pieces
- 5 potatoes, cut in large pieces
Put all ingredients in crockpot and set on low until vegetables are cooked through (about 3-4 hours).
Garden Vegetable Plate
Choose vegetables from the garden or your local farmer’s market (or even the grocery store). Cook to your likeness and eat. In the picture above is boiled red potatoes, corn on the cob (with Earth Balance vegan spread), green beans, and tomatoes.
So eating vegan can be quite simple and delicious. We hope these ideas will help you to get started in creating your own simple vegan meals.