Planning your plant-based meals is a simple and effective way to save time during busy weeks. With a plan, you can reduce the time you spend fretting in the grocery aisles and spend less time in the kitchen. It’s a win-win.
Not sure how to get started? Below, we give you all of the tips and tricks you need to build a simple plant-based meal plan. We also share some of our favorite plant-based recipes to get you started.
Plant-based meal planning involves planning meals in advance that use plant products such as vegetables, fruits, whole grains and seeds. The simplicity of these ingredients makes incorporating them into your daily life easy. They’re blank canvases that can be turned into an endless number of delicious plant-based recipes.
Planning these recipes in advance allows you to shop more efficiently as you’ll know exactly what ingredients you need. Plus, planning means you’ll spend less time in the kitchen trying to come up with each meal on the fly.
If you’re new to plant-based meal planning, it’s best to start small. Try planning just one meal, such as dinner or lunch, for a week. Once you get comfortable, you can then start planning full breakfast, lunch and dinner menus for you and your family.
As you get started, there are a few key things to remember when building a simple plant-based meal plan: embrace nutrient-dense foods, keep meal prep simple and use flavorful seasonings to keep things fresh and fun.
The first step in making the perfect plant-based meal plan is to embrace nutrient-dense foods, including fruits, vegetables, legumes and grains. These foods ensure your body receives the nutrition it needs to thrive.
Variety is also important. Using a variety of nutrient-dense ingredients not only keeps your meals from feeling a bit “blah,” but also gives your body access to a wide range of vitamins and minerals. Luckily, there are so many options out there, from apples to zucchini.
To boost the time savings you’ll experience with meal planning, plan meals that are also easy to prep. There are many ways to reduce prep time.
For example, try planning meals that can be batch-cooked in advance. This is a great time saver as it allows you to make several meals at a time. Simply store the meals in your fridge or freezer and thaw them when you’re ready to enjoy them.
You can also plan one-pot meals that are easy to prepare without using your entire dish cabinet. This way, you can spend more time enjoying your meal and less time doing the dishes.
Plant-based meal planning doesn’t have to look like planning a bunch of salads for the week. Instead, you can keep things exciting by trying out new flavorful seasonings and condiments.
For example, you can easily make a delicious dish by grilling a variety of your favorite veggies. But, just by adding some chili powder, cumin, paprika, oregano and lime juice, you can create some tasty veggie tacos too!
By now, hopefully, you’re inspired to create your first weekly meal plan. To keep things simple, there are three key steps to take: pick and plan your meals, plan your grocery trip and prep. Let’s dive in a bit deeper.
First things first, grab a pen and some paper. Take some time to jot down some of your favorite plant-based recipes. You can also do a quick online search for some new recipes you’d like to try.
Feeling stuck? Remember to keep it simple. Your recipes don’t have to be elaborate. Here are some examples of easy breakfast, lunch and dinner recipes you can use as inspiration.
Once you have a solid list of recipes, you can begin planning a week’s worth of meals. You can do this using your planner, a calendar or another method that works for you.
With your recipes planned out and ready to go, it’s time to shop. Before you hit the store, here are some tips to make the most of your trip:
Meal prepping can eliminate some of the stress that comes with cooking each day. Plus, it’s easy to do when you have your recipes planned and ingredients on hand.
There are various ways to prep your meals. For example, you can make some of your meals in advance and refrigerate or freeze them until you’re ready to serve them. Or you can simply prepare your ingredients in advance and then prepare the meal when you’re ready to enjoy it.
If you decide to prepare and store full meals, make sure you’re using freezer-safe storage containers or bags to prevent spoilage. You’ll also want to follow safety guidelines when deciding how long to store your meals.
When reheating, try to reheat your meals using the method they were originally prepared in. For example, reheat stir fry in a pan on your stove. Or you can always reheat your meals using a microwave.
To help you start your plant-based meal plan, here are some delicious and healthy recipes to try.
If you’re looking for a plant-friendly and flavorful dish that makes your veggies pop, it doesn’t get better than these simple spring rolls. Plus, the ginger curry dipping sauce has a zing you’ll have to taste to believe.
View the full recipe: Vegan Spring Rolls With Ginger Curry Dipping Sauce
Just because you want to stick to a plant-based diet doesn’t mean you have to say goodbye to tacos. These coconut cauliflower tacos are a great way to indulge your taco cravings while focusing on plant-based ingredients.
View the full recipe: Coconut Cauliflower Tacos
This quinoa grain bowl with mushrooms, sweet potato and kale is an excellent plant-based meal solution that gives you a good mix of whole vegetables and grains.
View the full recipe: Quinoa Grain Bowl With Mushrooms, Sweet Potato and Kale
Plant-based meal planning is a simple way to save time in the kitchen and enjoy delicious and nutritious meals throughout the week. Pacific Foods offers a wide range of plant-based broths, stocks, soups and more to help you simplify your meal planning. Shop our products today and find them in a grocery store near you!