Dinner ideas both paleo and vegetarian
December 18, 2012 11:56 AM   Subscribe

I need some dinner ideas that are both vegetarian and suitable for a paleo diet!

Alright Metafilter, help a sister out. I'm a lifelong vegetarian and I absolutely love cooking. I'm adventurous with food and love trying new things and generally I feel pretty confident in being able to come up with dishes that all kinds of people can dig. However, lately I am in a position where I would like to spend more meals in the company of someone on a paleo diet and I'm having a bit of trouble coming up with ideas. Any suggestions?

Restrictions: Vegetarian, so no meat (fish is a meat). Does not have to be vegan, so dairy and eggs are ok. Paleo in this case means no grains (pasta, bread, tortillas, etc.), no soy, and no beans or legumes. Best answers would be things we can both enjoy without extra modification, but I'm also fine with base dishes that can then have different proteins thrown into them at the end.

Also, if anyone knows a good websites for recipes and/or resources that would be aces!
posted by troublewithwolves to Food & Drink (20 answers total) 55 users marked this as a favorite
My luxury go-to dish when I'm all low/no carbing and trying to eat more veggies? The Waldorf Salad.
posted by The Whelk at 11:59 AM on December 18, 2012 [3 favorites]

Maybe a crustless vegetable quiche, with a green salad on the side?
posted by something something at 12:00 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]

also dried cranberries are an excellent addition to a traditional Caesar salad and you could just throw some grilled chicken on top for the other person, round it out with a crustless cheese and onion quiche?
posted by The Whelk at 12:01 PM on December 18, 2012

Spring rolls. If the rice paper wraps are too much grain for the paleo, everything can be piled into lettuce leaves.
posted by Juliet Banana at 12:05 PM on December 18, 2012

Eggs en cocotte. Here's one with goat cheese.
posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 12:06 PM on December 18, 2012

posted by hrj at 12:06 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]

We do an egg pie (crustless quiche), and lately have been eating raw kale salad like it's about to be made illegal.
posted by rtha at 12:07 PM on December 18, 2012 [2 favorites]

A couple of ideas, based on this 8 weeks as a paleo vegetarian post:
posted by rebekah at 12:08 PM on December 18, 2012

How about a nice lasagne with thin slices of eggplant and zucchini instead of pasta?

Make a wonderful marinara, roast some veggies, and mix with ricotta and Italian cheeses.

Om, nom, nom.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 12:08 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]

Indian cuisine - especially dal and saag. Vegetable stir-fry is also tasty. If you really want to wow said person, setting a proper cheese board is the way to go... compliment with fruit slices and crudités. Spaghetti squash and home-made sauce (find a recipe that doesn't require sugar) is another option, as is eggplant parmesan.
posted by Slap*Happy at 12:10 PM on December 18, 2012

I revel in the cauliflower season! I love to grow it, I love to eat it (as long as I remember to have a few beano ahead of time.) My favorite recipe:

Steamed head of cauliflower
Cream cheese
Salt and pepper

Process in the blender until smooth. It can be sprinkled with cheese, spiced up with garlic or thyme, make thicker or thinner and will serve as a base for other foods that are usually eaten with rice or noodles.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 12:17 PM on December 18, 2012

I do a great paleo lasagna that replaces noodles with thin slices (longwise) of zucchini layered with raw spinach. The spinach gives it a chewiness that would otherwise be missed by the absence of noodles. I do it with meat sauce but a plain tomato sauce would be just fine. It works with any lasagna recipe, no other alterations needed (in fact, I generally make it half noodle, half veg, to please my grainfed children).

I generally try to limit dairy as do many paleo/primal eaters, but when I make this lasagna I consider the cheeses in it to be a treat--your paleo dining partner's mileage may vary.
posted by padraigin at 12:17 PM on December 18, 2012

Spaghetti squash with a tomato sauce like it was pasta. Use roasted mushrooms, onions, peppers in the sauce.

I saw a recipe on Smitten Kitchen for a Butternut Squash and Caramelized Onion Gallette. I haven't made it yet, but I was thinking about making it without the crust and just serve the filling in bowls like stew.
posted by CathyG at 12:23 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]

Nothing simpler than roast cauliflower. Cut into florets, toss with olive oil, minced garlic and lemon juice, place in roasting pan in a 500 degree oven for about 15-20 min, stir it around halfway through to ensure even roasting. Remove from oven, shave on some cheese if you wish (a peppery one like Parmigiano-Reggiano works well) serve as a side dish.

Also, for desert, a nice once-and-while paleo treat are figs. Lightly rub on some honey (very little, figs are pretty sugary already, you just want the slightest bit of surface stickiness) and then roll them in roasted sesame seeds. Or just straight up serve figs along side some cheese - Gorgonzola pairs nicely.
posted by The Whelk at 12:24 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]

Vegetarian fajitas
posted by bq at 12:43 PM on December 18, 2012

Eggplant parmigiana or eggplant lasagna style.

Moroccan vegetable tagine (I like cauliflower, green beans, mushrooms, and tomatoes).

Imam bayildi, with preserved-lemon-scented riced cauliflower as a side.
posted by Sidhedevil at 12:51 PM on December 18, 2012

I have made paleo/vegetarian friendly curry a few times, using this recipe with some changes: I used a different brand of curry paste that didn't have shrimp paste (but was still imported from Thailand, "Arroy D"), no fish sauce, added a number of spices and other things after stirring in the curry paste (1 tbsp cumin, 1 tbsp fresh ginger, zest of one lime, splash of rooster sauce aka Sriracha), and topped with 1 tbsp fresh cilantro and 2 tbsp fresh Thai basil just before removing from heat.

We ate it with meat for the paleo and tofu for the vegetarians, cooked on the side.
posted by Paper rabies at 2:19 PM on December 18, 2012

I feel for you I am veggie and hubby is primal. Let me share with you my go to's

Spagetti squash spagetti is awesome.

I roast the squash cut it in half, gut the insides and cook it in an inch of water (insides down)in the oven say 350 45 minutes?

Then roast peppers and lots of tomatoes when they are done. Garlic and oil in a frying pan, scoop out the squash into the pan then I add veggies I have, broccoli is good... the roasted things lots of fresh basil, and some hot pepper... sun dried tomatoes are good too. I eat this every week sometimes we cheat and put parmesan on it.

Ratatouille is about a bit of careful chopping, it's a nice warm French Food. It can be a main course or a side.

1 Eggplant Cubed+skinned

1 Bell Pepper Cubed

Carrots are good

3 Small Zucchini Cubed+skinned

3 Cloves Garlic Diced

1 Onion diced

2 Large Tomatoes Diced (Lazy use san marzanos big can)

1 tsp Coriander

5 Basil Leaves or 1 tbs dried basil

Olive Oil
Heat Pan to Medium, add 2 tbsp olive oil. Add garlic and Onion; cook until almost caramelized. Add all vegetables and herbs turn heat to low. Simmer ~30 minutes.

If I have meat eaters I grill sausages and put em on top of either dish.
posted by ibakecake at 4:52 PM on December 18, 2012

Cube sweet potatoes. Toss in melted butter. Salt and pepper. Roast at 400 until they star to brown. Squeeze lime juice over the top.
posted by plinth at 5:31 PM on December 18, 2012

fried cauliflower "rice"!

Basically, you take a head of raw cauliflower and shred it on a box grater or food processor until it's in tiny shards like rice. Microwave it for a minute or so just to fluff it up. No need to boil it or precook it any more than that, just add to the pan like you would cooked rice when making fried rice. Once your veggie fried "rice" is done, you both can add whatever protein you like to it. Personally, I like mine with lots of garlic chili sauce, broccoli, scallions and bok choy. Soy sauce (or a more paleo-friendly alternative), ginger, and sesame oil are great in it too.
posted by inertia at 7:48 AM on December 19, 2012 [5 favorites]

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