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Meals like this (meat and vegetarian options)


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I'm trying to menu plan for this month, and I'm looking for some meals that work for a family with an elderly person who really thinks that there should be meat in every meal, and deserves to be spoiled, and a vegetarian.   So, either dishes that can be made without meat, and have meat added, or dishes that can be made with meat on the side to be added.    

To give you an idea, here are some meals that have worked well for us. 

 

Shepherd's pie with one pan made with ground lamb, and one with lentils.  

Enchiladas, with a pan of chicken, and a pan of spinach and zucchini

Egg roll bowls with edamame and sesame seeds, with stir fried ground pork 

Baked ravioli (thanks to the hive), with one pan made with meat bolognese, and one with lentil bolognese or marinara

Pizza beans, with Italian sausage on the side. 

 

Edited by BaseballandHockey
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  • BaseballandHockey changed the title to Meals like this (meat and vegetarian options)
5 minutes ago, medawyn said:

My family all likes the spices in Wellness Mama’s kima recipe, and you could easily make a pan with beans.

 

This lentil stew is very unattractive but hearty and delicious: https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.realsimple.com/food-recipes/browse-all-recipes/lentil-stew-sausage-potatoes%3famp=true

That lentil stew looks delicious.

 

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spanakopeta.  does have lots of eggs and cheese.  (and spinach.  lots and lots of spinach.) I make a huge one and will eat it until it's gone.  it's good with a tabbouleh on the side.   I use the frugal gourmet's recipe.

 

Greek cooking for an American kitchen is fabulous, and has a lot of that type.

Eta: my spanakopeta recipe is from Greek Cooking for an American kitchen. just for clarity.

Edited by gardenmom5
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burgers - with regular and veggie versions?

Quiche, with some with cheese/spinach/tomatoes and some with bacon or ham and cheese and whatever other veggies?

homemade pizza with different options

Tacos with various options

Pasta with pesto and option of with or without chicken

 

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I sometimes make two batches of the same basic chili recipe, but some with meat and some without. Same with simple curry recipes (or even using jarred curry sauce), I make some with chicken and some with chickpeas.

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My 16 yo kid was vegetarian for about 5 years, starting at age 9, and is still very picky about the taste and texture of meat, so it is almost always an add-in.

Most of our dinners are along these lines:

Veggie & pineapple fried rice with sides of stir fried protein (chicken/shrimp/tofu/?)

veggie rice noodle bowls topped with protein

pasta variations, with a side of meatballs 

chopped salad topped with protein (steak tips/chicken/chick peas/last week's grocery order included a surprise substitution of cooked lobster, so that was my salad add-on)

 

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That’s a lot of extra work. I’d just put some meat on the side and make the main dish/side vegetarian friendly. I’ve started getting vegan meals each week from Purple Carrot. I’m not a vegan or even a vegetarian but I love the ideas they send me each week. This week I tried nori-and non-alcoholic beer-battered tofu slices in place of fish for ‘fish and chips’. Delish! The recipes are free on their Website.

I’ve done a white bean cassoulet, spicy Asian peanut noodles, California rolls, carrot/leek fritters (made with garbanzo flour), halved/toasted bolillos topped with chipotle refried beans, vegan cheese, fresh radish, pico and lettuce. Carrot dumplings with hazelnuts, browned butter and arugula (kind of like sweet potato ravioli)... Delish!

Edited by Sneezyone
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Way too much work, making two separate meals.

For years, with picky eater, I made modular meals. Starch, veggies and meat all separate, and everyone can choose the components they like. I would just cook a vegetarian meal and serve the meat on the side.

Edited by regentrude
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Mac and cheese bar? Mac and cheese is vegetarian, toppings can be omnivorous - grilled chicken, roasted red peppers, bacon, sautéed spinach, etc. Side of big salad, raw veggies for dipping in dressing.

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I have one that is vegetarian, the rest of us are not. We do taco bar a lot, but most of the time, for soup and such, I cook the meat first, set aside, make the rest of the soup recipe, dip her some out, then add the meat for the rest of us. Same with pasta sauce and stir fry, I just dip her some out and then finish the dish. For pot pie, I cook the chicken separate, make the filling, dip some out for dd and stir in some canned chick peas, then finish the dishes. Or doing chicken Alfredo or chicken Parmesan, where the chicken is added on top.

We raise our own beef so we often eat meat and two sides, then she substitutes eggs for the main or sometimes we have a frozen meat substitute thing.

 

Edited by saraha
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I think soups and stews are easiest, because you can easily split it at some point, and add meat to one (and maybe legumes to the other, if they're not already in it).  For example, you can have navy bean soup, but for the meat eaters, add ham.  You can have lentil soup, and for the meat eaters, add sausage.  You can have chili, and have one vegetarian but add ground hamburger to the other.  

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I recommend this pan so that you can easily make the same thing with variations. I can't have dairy, so it's easy for me to make dishes with and without cheese. I've used it for lasagnas and casseroles. I need to experiment more with it, though. 

https://www.amazon.com/Chicago-Metallic-26783-Professional-12-5-Inch/dp/B00WDZOPII/ref=asc_df_B00WDZOPII/?tag=hyprod-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=198075681105&hvpos=&hvnetw=g&hvrand=17377029122990433710&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9010883&hvtargid=pla-322390886831&psc=1

Edited by mom31257
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53 minutes ago, mom31257 said:

I recommend this pan so that you can easily make the same thing with variations. I can't have dairy, so it's easy for me to make dishes with and without cheese. I've used it for lasagnas and casseroles. I need to experiment more with it, though. 

https://www.amazon.com/Chicago-Metallic-26783-Professional-12-5-Inch/dp/B00WDZOPII/ref=asc_df_B00WDZOPII/?tag=hyprod-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=198075681105&hvpos=&hvnetw=g&hvrand=17377029122990433710&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9010883&hvtargid=pla-322390886831&psc=1

That pan looks useful for this purpose! 

I find it's often just as easy for me to make two things rather than set aside plain meat to add later. It depends on the dish of course, but for something saucy, if there is going to be meat, I want the meat to cook in the sauce, not add plain cooked meat later.  So, two pans on the stove (or in the oven) with their different components.  Once I started doing it when my daughter stopped eating meat, I found I got into the groove pretty easily. 

Of course the easiest is to have plain roasted (grilled, etc) meat in some form, but I am not a fan of that too often either. 

 

 

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1 hour ago, mom31257 said:

I recommend this pan so that you can easily make the same thing with variations. I can't have dairy, so it's easy for me to make dishes with and without cheese. I've used it for lasagnas and casseroles. I need to experiment more with it, though. 

https://www.amazon.com/Chicago-Metallic-26783-Professional-12-5-Inch/dp/B00WDZOPII/ref=asc_df_B00WDZOPII/?tag=hyprod-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=198075681105&hvpos=&hvnetw=g&hvrand=17377029122990433710&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9010883&hvtargid=pla-322390886831&psc=1

This pan is AMAZING.  I just added it to my amazon list.  

 

I will often make two pots of chili -- one traditional with only meat, sauce and seasonings (my carnivore doesn't even like beans 🙄) and one with veggie and beans.  I freeze extra portions of the meat chili for the carnivore. 

Jambalaya - half with sausage, half just veggie or lentil or soy crumbles 

Stromboli - very easy with pre-made dough!  Stuff one with italian meats and cheese and the other with veggies and cheese 

Salad bar - so many options 

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It is easiest for you to make the meat as a side so that anyone can eat anything they choose. In all the workplaces I have been, the food that they order for group lunches and dinner is always designed to have meat as a separate dish with several other vegetarian components to pick from because there are a lot of vegetarians in my area (and a lot of gluten free, vegan, peanut free eaters as well).

As a vegetarian, I can offer a list of what we might eat if we ordered from a restaurant that has very limited vegetarian options.

Burgers: black bean burgers: you can either make your own Black Bean burgers or any of the multiple yummy frozen options available 🙂  [conventional burgers ]

Burritos: bean burritos [meat burritos]

Quesadilla: Cheese with veggies like bell peppers/spinach/Kale/mushroom stirfried and added to the filling [meat Quesedillas]

Salad: Basically replace the meat with a protein which can be chickpeas, grilled tofu, edamame beans or cheese

Taco: refried beans [meat]

Asian curries: Tofu with Thai curries [meat instead of Tofu]

Chinese stir fried rice: Smashed chickpeas added to the veggies for vegetarian version [meat or eggs as alternative]

Pizza: Veggie toppings [meat for conventional pizza]

Indian curries: add marinated paneer or marinated tofu to the curry base before serving [meat as per recipe]

Indian Dals: Most of them are vegetarian anyway, so, there is not much tweaking needed.

Middle eastern falafels with pita bread: already vegetarian [add a shawarma as a side for the meat eaters. In fact, make it a multi course meal with vegetarian Tabbouleh, vegetarian Baba Ghanoush, hummus so that everyone enjoys a variety]

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We do a lot of fried rice and stir fry and such. Basically a lot of Asian inspired dinners. 

I use shelled edamame, tofu, or a meat subsititue for the protein, and add in the sliced, cooked meat for my son and husband who "need" meat.

8 minutes ago, mathnerd said:

It is easiest for you to make the meat as a side so that anyone can eat anything they choose. In all the workplaces I have been, the food that they order for group lunches and dinner is always designed to have meat as a separate dish with several other vegetarian components to pick from because there are a lot of vegetarians in my area (and a lot of gluten free, vegan, peanut free eaters as well).

As a vegetarian, I can offer a list of what we might eat if we ordered from a restaurant that has very limited vegetarian options.

Burgers: black bean burgers: you can either make your own Black Bean burgers or any of the multiple yummy frozen options available 🙂  [conventional burgers ]

Burritos: bean burritos [meat burritos]

Quesadilla: Cheese with veggies like bell peppers/spinach/Kale/mushroom stirfried and added to the filling [meat Quesedillas]

Salad: Basically replace the meat with a protein which can be chickpeas, grilled tofu, edamame beans or cheese

Taco: refried beans [meat]

Asian curries: Tofu with Thai curries [meat instead of Tofu]

Chinese stir fried rice: Smashed chickpeas added to the veggies for vegetarian version [meat or eggs as alternative]

Pizza: Veggie toppings [meat for conventional pizza]

Indian curries: add marinated paneer or marinated tofu to the curry base before serving [meat as per recipe]

Indian Dals: Most of them are vegetarian anyway, so, there is not much tweaking needed.

Middle eastern falafels with pita bread: already vegetarian [add a shawarma as a side for the meat eaters. In fact, make it a multi course meal with vegetarian Tabbouleh, vegetarian Baba Ghanoush, hummus so that everyone enjoys a variety]

This is the most comprehensive list, and I do a lot of this myself. 

I also do burrito bowls, with rice, beans, roasted corn/onions/peppers, guac, and salsa. Add chicken or beef for thise who want it. So, so good. 

The idea of making separate dishes, like casseroles seems so cumbersome tbh! 

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