Eat Like A Vegetarian

Love Collard Greens? Well then you have a powerful diet aid in your weight-loss arsenal! Dark green and loaded with Vitamin C, calcium, fiber and disease-fighting beta carotene, collards will fill you up without weighing you down. But walk away from the southern tradition of cooking them with artery-clogging fat-back, neck bones, lard or pork grease. Try substituting Liquid Smoke Seasoning, herbs, black pepper, garlic powder and any other seasoning you may like. The smoke seasoning will mimic the meat flavor and enhanced with the other seasonings, you’ll have a tasty dish of collards to trim your waistline!

Want to hear more? Don’t worry … I’m not out to capture souls for some vegetarian roll call. But there are many meatless dishes that are flavorful and delicious and – because they are not laden with animal fat – lower your fat intake as well. Enjoy!!

Doesn’t this look tasty? 🙂 It’s Chinese food yes, but those aren’t chunks of meat you see nestled in between the broccoli, carrots and pea pods, it’s tofu. This is the Bean Curd with Mixed Vegetable entree that you can find on any Chinese food menu. Now I’m not one of these vegetarians who feels a burning need to have tofu all the time, but it is full of protein; it’s obedient: it absorbs the flavor of any dish it’s cooked in. And the fact that it’s not beef or pork means that there are less calories and less fat but full of juicy, spicy flavor! Love it!

Macaroni and Cheese, aaahhh – Yep I loveLoveLOVE homemade cheesy mac and cheese!! I am a lacto-ovo vegetarian, which means that I still have milk (when cooking), cheese and eggs in my diet. I worry alot about not getting enough calcium and protein, so I keep them. Ha!! Who am I kidding! I keep the cheese because I love cheese! But if you want to reduce your fat intake and prepare more of a vegetarian dish, you can nix the whipping cream and regular cheese that I use (thank heavens I don’t make this daily!) and go for skim milk and low-fat cheeses or soy milk and veggie cheeses. Still a tasty dish!

Oatmeal! Not just for breakfast anymore – Now of course stores sell the instant packets in all flavors: maple brown sugar, peaches and cream (or it might be strawberries and cream) and many others. But I’m partial to the old-fashioned, cook it on the stove oats. I like these better because then I can control the amount of sugary additions. I usually add a frozen fruit like blueberries, blackberries or I add raisins. Sometimes it’s a brown sugar day and other times, it’s just a bowl of hot, plain oatmeal with perhaps a splash of vanilla flavoring. Yummy either way!

Okay … Now THESE are veggie rolls! If you are looking for a quick, appetizer or main meal if you eat like me, these would totally fill your needs and your belly. The good thing about these little beauties is that they can be as vegetarian or vegan as you wish. They take about 20 minutes to prepare and can be altered to suit anyone’s tastes. Wanna try them?

Hummus! Probably my favorite food to eat! I love all kinds: red pepper, jalapeno and cilantro, garlic, traditional. You name it! If it’s made from a chick pea, I love it! Hummus is great for spreading on crackers, for use as a sandwich base in place of mayonnaise, and as a dip with an assortment of crudites. It’s low fat and protein rich. Try it!

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