Our collection of delicious, heart-healthy vegetarian recipes fill your nutritional needs sans meat.
April 29, 2013
1 of 13Photo: Randy Mayor
Nutritious Vegetarian Recipes
Vegetarians can easily meet daily protein needs by eating an array of plant-based foods. Fill out your meals with beans, lentils, nuts, rice, and soy products like tofu and tempeh, and avoid relying on a hefty portion of cheese to fill the protein gap.
First up are our Red Lentil-Rice Cakes with Simple Tomato Salsa. Crisp on the outside and creamy on the inside, these salsa-topped, red-lentil rice cakes make a lovely vegetarian entrée. They offer a great way to use leftover basmati rice; if you're starting with cooked rice, use about 1 1/2 cups. Add mixed greens to the plate for even more color.
2 of 13Photo: Randy Mayor
White Beans with Roasted Red Pepper and Pesto
Add a green salad and crusty bread to this simple rustic dish for a satisfying supper. Simmer the beans on the stovetop if they're still not tender after cooking under pressure for 12 minutes.
Peppery arugula complements the sweetness of ripe tomatoes. Use heirloom tomatoes, if available, for even better flavor. Substitute fusilli for cavatappi, if desired. Serve immediately.
4 of 13Photo: Randy Mayor
Pasta with Zucchini and Toasted Almonds
Pair flavorful pasta with olive tapenade breadsticks for a superfast and delicious meal in minutes.
5 of 13Photo: Oxmoor House
Sautéed Vegetables and Spicy Tofu
Thanks to a seasoned packaged of tofu, this easy stir-fry comes together in a snap. This dish is delicious served alone, but for heartier fare, serve it on top of rice noodles.
6 of 13Photo: Becky Luigart-Stayner
Summer Squash Pizza
You can use all zucchini or yellow squash for this grilled pizza. Serve one slice as an appetizer or two with a salad for a simple supper.
7 of 13Photo: Randy Mayor
Black Lentil and Couscous Salad
This zesty side is modeled after tabbouleh, the Middle Eastern salad of bulgur wheat, tomatoes, cucumbers, herbs, lemon juice, and olive oil. Here, we use couscous instead of bulgur and add black lentils for color and texture. Serve chilled or at room temperature.
Cumin and fiery serrano chile infuse this simple soup as it cooks, and a dollop of sour cream provides a refreshing foil for the spicy flavors. For less heat, seed the chile first or use a milder pepper, such as jalapeño. You can also omit the chile altogether, if you prefer.
9 of 13Photo: Lee Harrelson
Falafel with Avocado Spread
The beauty of this Latin twist on the classic Middle Eastern falafel sandwich is its simplicity, and of course, flavor. Garnish with microgreens and sliced red onion.
The vitamin C from lemon juice aids iron absorption. Serve bulgur salad with grilled chicken, lemony hummus, and toasted 100 percent whole-wheat pita wedges to round out the meal. Substitute fresh shelled fava beans for edamame, if you like. Fava beans also supply protein, fiber, and B vitamins.
11 of 13Photo: Randy Mayor
Feta and Green Onion Couscous Cakes over Tomato-Olive Salad
An authentic Greek trio of tomatoes, olives, and feta cheese accompanies these couscous cakes.
12 of 13Photo: Randy Mayor
Grilled Vegetable Pitas with Goat Cheese and Pesto Mayo
For these filling pitas, you can use whatever vegetables you have on hand—eggplant, summer squash, bok choy, or sweet onion. Here we use portobellos, red bell peppers, and Vidalia onions.
Fava beans are traditional in this stew, which we updated with edamame. You can also substitute green peas for the edamame, if you like. Scoop up the thick stew with Teff Injera Bread or pita. Halve the portion if you'd like to serve this as a hearty side dish.