Less Meat, More Benefits

August 21, 2019
Healthy couple with vegetables in the kitchen

Are you trying to work healthier, lighter foods — especially fruits and vegetables — into your daily diet? If so, consider cutting out meat one day per week. This small step towards improving your health contributing to a better environment is known as “Meatless Monday.”

By going meatless one day per week, you can reduce your risk of chronic preventable diseases as well as your global carbon footprint. Did you know that it takes 1,850 gallons of water to produce a single pound of beef compared to only 39 gallons of water to produce a pound of vegetables?

Meatless Monday has become a global phenomenon since 2003 and is quickly catching on in the United States. In fact, it’s even more important in the U.S. because Americans consume so much more animal protein than the rest of the world — nearly four times the global average!

If you are health-conscious about the foods you eat, try working Meatless Monday into your schedule and see if you even notice that the meat is missing. We’ve researched a few fantastic vegetable-based recipes to help get you started.

Veggie Flatbreads

With nothing but a little flour, yeast, and salt, you can create your own homemade flatbread at home — and then add the nutritious toppings of your choice. This video will walk you through two flatbread recipes: one with caramelized onions, peaches, arugula, and goat cheese, the other with stir-fried mushrooms, peppers, and mozzarella. Both are easy to make and delicious!

Grilled Eggplant Rollups

These tasty rollups bring together the flavors of grilled eggplant, goat cheese, and roasted red peppers in every bite. This simple recipe can be served hot out of the oven or can be eaten as cold leftovers the next morning. To re-heat, place on a low-heat grill for two minutes.

Lentil Taco Cups

Muffin tins aren’t just for dessert — they can also be used for festive vegetarian recipes. These fun and easily-held treats will be a hit on the dinner table. They’re so flavorful that you won’t even miss the meat! You can switch the sour cream to low-fat Greek yogurt if you want to cut out half of the saturated fat.

Mushroom Stroganoff

Going meatless doesn’t mean giving up hearty foods — this stroganoff is perfectly comforting, savory, and delicious. The texture of the mushrooms carries this recipe and after a few tries, you may even prefer it to the beef version! This recipe is easy to make and can be on the table in under 30 minutes.

Skipping meat one day per week is good for your health and even better for the planet. If you already practice Meatless Monday on your own and believe in the benefits, look into becoming a part of the Meatless Monday global movement and help spread the word to your community.