Go Vegetarian for a Week

Ever considered taking the plunge and going vegetarian? Even if you’re a hardcore meat-eater, switching up your diet even for a short time can help your body – and maybe help you find some new favorites. Join us this week for a week-long Vegetarian Challenge!


We all know fruits and veggies are healthy, but how can going full vegetarian help your body?

  • Heart healthy: Vegetarians may be up to one-third less likely to be hospitalized for or die of heart disease. Eating high-fiber whole grains, legumes and nuts along with fruits and veggies can keep blood sugar levels steady and lower cholesterol to lower risk of heart attack.
  • Lower blood pressure: Eating less meat can help lower your blood pressure. Eating more plant-based foods that tend to be lower in fat, sodium and cholesterol can help lower your number, and many fruits and veggies are high in potassium, which also helps lower BP.

Studies have also shown that eating more vegetables and fruits can reduce the risk for cancer, while a healthy vegetarian diet can help prevent and treat type 2 diabetes. Even if you can’t quit meat entirely, incorporating more vegetables into your diet is a win for your body.

Come back tomorrow for a delicious vegetarian recipe!

Ever considered taking the plunge and going vegetarian? Even if you’re a hardcore meat-eater, switching up your diet even for a short time can help your body – and maybe help you find some new favorites. Join us this week for a week-long Vegetarian Challenge!


Grilling doesn’t have to mean red meat! One warm summer night, try these delicious and easy black bean burgers.

Black Bean Burgers

Total Time: 20 mins

Serves: 4 (4 patties)

Ingredients:

  • 1 (1-oz.) slice whole-grain bread, toasted and torn into pieces
  • 1/4 cup grated onion
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated lime rind
  • 1 (15-oz.) can unsalted black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 teaspoon hot sauce
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil

Steps:

  1. Put bread in food processor and pulse five times. Move to bowl.
  2. Combine garlic, onion, juice, cumin, salt, rind and beans in processor. Pulse four to five times. Add mixture plus walnuts, hot sauce, and eggs to breadcrumbs; stir well. Divide mixture into four equal portions and shape into ¾-inch-thick patties.
  3. Heat oil in a non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Add patties to pan, reduce heat to medium, and cook four minutes on each side or until browned.
  4. Use hamburger buns and toppings of your choice. We recommend tomato, cheddar cheese, and a slice of avocado!

Recipe adapted from: https://www.cookinglight.com/recipes/20-minute-black-bean-burgers

Stop by tomorrow for a new tip: recipe swaps!

Ever considered taking the plunge and going vegetarian? Even if you’re a hardcore meat-eater, switching up your diet even for a short time can help your body – and maybe help you find some new favorites. Join us this week for a week-long Vegetarian Challenge!

You don’t have to give up your favorite foods to go vegetarian! There are some easy swaps you can make in your favorite recipes to cut out meat.
Recipe calls for meat, poultry, or fish? Try using tofu, tempeh, lentils, mushrooms or jackfruit.
Need beef/chicken stock or broth? Vegetable stock or broth works just as well.
Feeling vegan? Want to avoid milk? There are so many options: soy milk, almond milk, coconut milk, and rice milk, to name a few.
Try some vegetarian brands. There are a lot of brands out there that cater to vegetarians or vegans. Amy’s has delicious frozen casseroles, Boca makes a delicious veggie burger, and Morningstar Farms has vegetarian breakfast options.

Day 4 tomorrow – let’s keep it going! Check back for a nutty twist on a classic fave.

Ever considered taking the plunge and going vegetarian? Even if you’re a hardcore meat-eater, switching up your diet even for a short time can help your body – and maybe help you find some new favorites. Join us this week for a week-long Vegetarian Challenge!


Fried rice is a delicious treat, whether you prefer chicken, beef, or shrimp. But it can be just as yummy with no meat, and the addition of nuts adds protein!

Nutty Fried Rice

Ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons toasted sesame oil, divided
  • 3 cups broccoli florets
  • 8 ounces presliced shiitake mushrooms
  • 2 (8.8-oz.) pkg. precooked brown rice
  • 1/2 cup unsalted, roasted cashews
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 3 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds

Steps:

  1. Heat one tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium high. Add mushrooms and broccoli; cook for six minutes. Remove mixture from pan; do not wipe out.
  2. Add two remaining tablespoons of oil to pan. Add rice and cashews; cook five minutes. Stir in eggs; cook 1 minute. Stir in veggie mixture, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, and pepper.
  3. Combine two remaining tablespoons of soy sauce, peanut butter, vinegar, and one tablespoon water in a bowl. Top rice mixture with peanut butter mixture and sesame seeds.

Recipe adapted from: https://www.cookinglight.com/recipes/nutty-fried-rice

Come back tomorrow for one more tip for your veggie journey.

Ever considered taking the plunge and going vegetarian? Even if you’re a hardcore meat-eater, switching up your diet even for a short time can help your body – and maybe help you find some new favorites. Join us this week for a week-long Vegetarian Challenge!


One thing that can a vegetarian diet more difficult is making sure you’re still getting all the nutrients you need. Going meat-free doesn’t mean a diet of mac and cheese, cheese pizza, and potato chips – you gotta keep it balanced!

  1. Watch your protein. Meat is a great source of protein, but it’s not the only one! Beans and peas have a lot a protein, as do nuts and soy products. You can also get protein from eggs and dairy.
  2. Consider your calcium. Calcium is important for bone health and can be easily incorporated into a vegetarian diet. Milk and cheese are obvious sources. But tofu made with calcium sulfate and dark-green leafy vegetables like collard, turnips and mustard greens all contain calcium.
  3. Add vitamin B12. This vitamin is only found naturally in animal products. You can find it in foods specially fortified with it, like cereals or soy products, or take a B12 supplement.

Whether you decide to go full vegetarian or add meat back in, make sure you’re eating a balanced diet. Fruits and veggies are always a good choice! Thanks for spending this week with us.

Content by Lockton Dunning Benefits with info from https://www.choosemyplate.gov/ten-tips-healthy-eating-for-vegetarians and https://www.healthline.com/health/becoming-vegetarian#risks