By Fredrica Syren:
I have many moments when I’m busy and totally forget what time it is, then suddenly find myself starved. Or I suddenly have my three kids’ eyes telling me they are “STARVED” and need food asap. At times like these, making plant-based and healthy foodmight seem impossible, but it’s totally doable. Here are my fast, easy and plant-based go-to foods:
Chickpea Sandwich—Chickpeas are loaded with fiber, protein and vitamins. And they are very filling. This recipe makes a wonderful chickpea salad that can be eaten as a sandwich or as a snack with crackers and raw vegetables.
4 cups chickpeas, canned or cooked
1/2 cup vegan mayo
3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon turmeric
3 Stalks celery, minced
1 large carrot, finely chopped
1/2 red onion, finely minced
sea salt & freshly ground pepper to taste
Direction: Add chickpeas to a large bowl and mash with a potato masher or back of a fork. You want a creamy consistency with some whole chickpeas.
Add all other ingredients and mix well.
Fast Broccoli and Beans Soup—I make this soup pretty much every week, and my kids never get tired of it. It can be made with red lentilsalso, but cook the soup for 10 minutes if using them. Red lentils do not need to be pre-soaked so it’s a great staple food to have for quick and easy meals.
Buddha Bowl—Buddha bowls are basically a bowl filled with a starch like rice, potatoes or quinoa, a protein like tofu added to it, then tempeh or beans, and finally topped with lots of either steamed or raw veggies and a dressing or sauce. I’m a huge fan of Buddha bowls just because they are, in general, quick and easy to make.
Ramen Noodles—Forget the boring and not very healthy ramen you ate in college. These days, you can find gluten free and much healthier ramen from Lotus Food. It takes about 8 minutes to make; and if you add grated and minced vegetables like kale, zucchini and carrot to it, you have a fully healthy and satisfying meal in no time.
Bean (or Lentil) Tostados—I usually always have cooked beans or lentils in my fridge as well as corn tortillas in the freezer because together they become a wonderful tostado in almost no time. It’s also one of my kids’ favorite foods.
Avocado Toast (or other Fun Toasts)—Avocado toast is just one of my favorite quick meals and can be dressed up when topped with arugula, seeds and other vegetables. Or it can be a quick snack with justmashed avocado on a piece toast.
Quinoa Salad—Quinoa cooks in about 10 minutes or so and is super easy to make. This ancient grain is one of my staple foods because it’s so versatile. You can add it to soups and salads, or eat it as is for a low-fat, high protein, nutritional food. I like adding quinoa as my grain and protein to salad. This recipe is one of my favorites.