If you saw my instagram story last night, you saw that I will now be sharing one plant based tip each day. I want to share the tips and tricks I have learned that have gotten me from eating meat every meal to barely eating it at all. This transition is not easy, I will be the first to admit. It took me until very recently to give up eggs. And if you can’t completely give up meat/dairy, that is OK. Whether you are eating more plants for health reasons, ethical reasons, or environmental reasons, these tips are intended to help you not only sustain a plant based lifestyle but actually enjoy it as well.
My first tip last night was this: put plants first. This may seem obvious, but it is really a question of mindset. I used to always think about what would taste good with this chicken or whatever meat i had. Now I try to reverse that and think about what would taste good with a plant based food of my choosing. Adopting this mindset does not necessarily exclude meat or dairy entirely, but naturally encourages you to minimize it.
The feeling of being full is not always physical, but also has a lot to do with your mindset. I know when I started eating plant based I felt like I was always “hungry” because I did not get enough “protien” in my meals. When I started to become more mindful of what I was eating, by slowing down or adding more vegetables, it became a lot clearer that I was actually full but I assumed that because I didn’t have meat I was hungry. I will admit this was probably one of the hardest parts of going plant based, but by adding more veggies and making them the star of the plate, I slowly started to feel full with every meal.
Now back to the recipe! A friend recommended a version of this recipe and I immediately fell in love. Ever want to eat mac and cheese but it’s summer and you do not want the heavy bloat after? This recipe is perfect for if you want a lighter/healthier version of mac and cheese. While it has a very similar color and texture to mac and cheese, it does taste a little more like pasta with a veggie sauce, which I think is perfect for this summer heat.
- 1½ cups butternut squash (peeled and chopped into cubes)
- ½ large sweet onion
- 16 oz package of pasta of your choice (I chose Banza)
- ¼ cup almond milk
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp dijon mustard
- 2 garlic cloves
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- ⅛ tsp paprika
- ⅛ tsp turmeric
- Put butternut squash, garlic and onions into a pot and cover with water by an inch. Cover and let simmer for about 15 minutes, until tender.
- While veggies are steaming, cook pasta according to package instructions. Drain and set aside.
- Once squash, garlic and onions are tender, drain , and add them to a high speed blender with the almond milk, lemon juice, salt, dijon, nutritional yeast, black pepper, paprika, turmeric, nutmeg and reserved cooking liquid from either the noodles or the squash. Blend until completely smooth. Use a tamper if necessary to push ingredients to the bottom of the blender.
- Add butternut squash sauce to the pasta and stir.