October 1 is observed as World Vegetarian Day, an opportunity for people to join together and raise awareness about vegetarianism. The goal is “To promote the joy, compassion and life-enhancing possibilities of vegetarianism.” This one-day holiday also marks the start of Vegetarian Awareness Month, which ends on November 1, observed as World Vegan Day.
Have you considered going vegetarian or heard about a friend who has? Have you wondered what the big deal is?
- Andrew Greco, one of our Facebook fans, is a vegetarian “For the planet.”
- Todd Ramsey told us he’s going meatless for two weeks to see if it’s something he can do. It’s an attempt at being healthier and trying to reduce the meat, namely red meat, in his diet.
- Amy Crews, one of our DIR staffers, said “I’m a vegetarian to stand up for animal rights, for my overall well being as well as to help alleviate the environmental impacts that come with the way in which animals are raised.”
No matter your motives for trying or adopting a vegetarian lifestyle, there’s really only good things that can come of it. If you’re still debating, here are a few ideas for dipping your toe in the meat-free waters this month.
Meatless Monday. This is a wildly popular word-of-mouth campaign that has taken off in the past year. The effort encourages people to eat meals without any meat for the entire day each Monday. You’ll be surprised how simple it is to adopt this practice. If you’re on Twitter, follow #MeatlessMonday (and look for our meatless Recipe of the Day).
Vegetarian for a Week. Forget those wacky detoxes and cleanses being hocked all over the web, try cleansing your body with natural fruits and vegetables. There’s no better way to fuel and refresh your body than with wholesome, healthy meals.
Be Sneaky. If you’re in to the idea, but your family isn’t, just sneak a meatless meal in to the rotation without saying a word. A meal like these amazing Slow Cooker Mexican-Style Stuffed Peppers will be an instant favorite and no one will notice there wasn’t any meat. Stew, soup, pizza, and pasta are other easy recipes that are satisfying and flavorful without the meat.
Skip a Meat. Don’t ever skip a meal, but skipping the meat in a meal is worth it. Dedicate one meal a day to being meatless. At the end of the week, assess how you feel, and ask yourself if you really even missed the animal protein. We promise you’ll still feel full, especially if you try some foods from the protein for vegetarians list.
We don’t want to have you to go this vegetarian road alone. Here are a few of our favorite meatless recipes that you should try at least once.
- Spaghetti Squash with Fresh Tomato and Basil Sauce – Try this and think spaghetti. You’ll be amazed!
- Veggie Potstickers – Save calories by enjoying this Asian favorite at home and without meat.
- Black Bean Burgers with Corn Salsa – Dress it like any other burger and you’ll enjoy a meatless dinner on the patio.
- Harvest Squash and Sweet Potato Soup – Use fresh in-season veggies from the farmers market, and then add a grilled cheese on the side.