Jackie Long Jackie Long
October 04, 2013

Each Friday, we share five things that are getting buzz around the Cooking Light offices—from what we’re reading around the Web, to what’s hot on Instagram, or even our latest favorite ingredient.

Happy October, and happy Vegetarian Awareness Month! We've many times espoused the merits of going meatless at least once a week (Meatless Mondays, anyone?), and we've also tackled the concerns and common questions about the vegetarian lifestyle. We're even giving away a fantastic foodie prize pack for our readers who tell us their best tips for making family favorites meat-free!

Fall is a great season to try out going meat-free, as many vegetarian recipes utilize the amazing autumn veggies we're starting to see in abundance. So whether you steer clear of meat full-time, on weekdays, or just once a week, give these 5 warm-you-up vegetarian recipes a go:

1. Roasted Butternut SoupOf all the winter veggies, the butternut squash is possibly the most versatile. We see it crop up in everything from pizzas to pastas to puddings, and it's tasty every time (See our Top-Rated Butternut Squash Recipes). One of our favorites is this Roasted Butternut Soup, which is sure to warm you up on even the chilliest days.    

2. Eggplant ParmesanEggplant may be in the home stretch of its peak season, but this dish was just begging to be included. An Italian classic, this is one of those "no-fail" recipes that continues to impress over and over again. And eggplant has a tender, meaty texture, which makes it an excellent substitute in meatless meals.

3. Grilled Stuffed Portobello MushroomsAnother common meat substitute in vegetarian meals is mushrooms. You still get the texture you crave from meat, but in a wholly vegetarian way. This stuffed mushroom recipe is an oldie-but-goodie, and it can work as a side dish, appetizer, or even main course.

4. Three-Bean Vegetarian ChiliWhat would fall be without some warming, delicious chili? This meatless option provides a nice, gentle kick of spice and will leave you full and satisfied.

5. Creamy Butternut, Blue Cheese, and Walnut CavatappiSee, butternut squash is cropping up again! This time it's combined with blue cheese and walnuts on top of cavatappi pasta for a fun, unique weeknight meal (and it goes from kitchen to table in just 45 minutes!).

Want more? We've got 100 Vegetarian Meals that will have you swooning. And don't forget to leave your best advice for going meatless for a chance to win a vegetarian prize pack!

Do you have any vegetarian favorites? Let us know!

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