Help! What to cook for dinner?
May 26, 2015 3:57 PM   Subscribe

I live with my 75-year-old mother, and a couple of weeks ago she decided to become vegetarian after a lifetime of being an omnivore. She is not interested in nutrition and is not going to figure out how to eat healthfully on her own, so if I want her to not die from just eating carbs all day, I need to figure this out. So many snowflakes inside!

The biggest problems are that she doesn't like a lot of things, she hates eating the same thing multiple times in a week, she has a lot of pain so she can't stand and cook things that take any kind of time, and she has a lot of trouble with her dentures so she prefers soft food.

Other problems: I do pretty much all of the cooking, but I'm not much of a creative cook. I am serviceable, I guess. I can follow a recipe, but I am not going to be all clever and figure out substitutions and hacks. I also hate cooking. I hate grocery shopping. I am a grownup so I DO these things, but they're nothing I enjoy. We've been discovering the limitations in availability of vegetarian take-out food.

Things she doesn't like at all: Indian food. Thai food. Eggplant. There are others, but those are the biggies.

Things we've been eating since she decided this: Pizza with veggies. Veggie lasagna. Burritos from Chipotle. Cottage cheese with veggies and crackers. Amy's frozen dinners. Pasta. Peanut butter. Grilled cheese and tomato sandwiches. There's always fresh fruit around, and we often have salad with meals, but to be honest for proteins I'm running out of ideas. If left to her own devices she would eat a muffin and coffee for breakfast, and ice cream for dinner. For reals.

She doesn't usually eat lunch, so I need simple things I can cook for her (and me, as I guess I am an at-home vegetarian now) for dinner that will get her enough protein, with enough variety to keep her going, and is not too sharp or crunchy. Soups are of course a good idea, but we can't eat soup every day. Ideally I'd like a rotation of 25-30 things I can surf through.

Thanks so much!
posted by clone boulevard to Food & Drink (45 answers total) 22 users marked this as a favorite
Response by poster: Sorry, forgot to add to the she doesn't like list: tofu!
posted by clone boulevard at 4:00 PM on May 26, 2015

Best answer: If she's not averse to eating eggs outside of breakfast, stir-fried tomatoes and eggs is one of the easiest vegetarian dishes in the Chinese canon and is especially good right now with fresh tomatoes in season. Has eggs so you get your protein and is a dead-simple and fast entree; I usually eat it with rice as I'm Chinese but you could definitely pair it with some other starch.
posted by andrewesque at 4:04 PM on May 26, 2015 [9 favorites]

For proteins, I would recommend beans: chickpeas are easy, and go with lots of things. You can puree them into hummus or just toss them in a salad. Also quinoa: serve it like rice, but it has protein as well.

If you have the time on the weekends, you could cook up some casseroles or stews and freeze them in small containers. Then you mix them up during the week so she doesn't get bored.

I have a recipe for a Greek stew with brown rice, chickpeas, and feta which freezes really well and is savory and soft. I'll look for it when I get home & post it.
posted by suelac at 4:08 PM on May 26, 2015

Soup, with beans? Chick peas, black bean soup, modified tortilla soup all have protein and are fairly easy options for dinner, and you can freeze and reheat the leftovers. Did you want specific recipes? I can take a stab at what I do for any of those. Additionally, these are all something my husband sometimes adds meat to, if you want that option as well.

Quiche and frittata are another good genre as well.
posted by kellyblah at 4:10 PM on May 26, 2015

Best answer: These sweet potato/ black bean burritos freeze really well, so you can make a batch and freeze half of it for some time when you don't want to cook.

Veggie enchilada casserole isn't great about protein: you might throw in a can of black beans to get a little more. It's yummy, though, and it has tons of veggies.

Are you on Pinterest? I find Pinterest good for recipes. You can search on "vegetarian" and then see if you can find some good boards to follow.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 4:11 PM on May 26, 2015 [1 favorite]

Greek yogurt is 18g protein for 6oz (current recommendation is ~7 grams of protein for every 20 pounds of body weight), with egg, cottage cheese, cream cheese coming up just behind. You can mix those in with vegetables or serve on the side. There's also fake meat - Morningstar or Quorn, Gardenburger, etc to break up the monotony of beans beans beans.

It sounds like she's a graze-y eater, and things like casseroles aren't going to help you because she won't eat them twice, so maybe just focus on getting a starch (preferably a complex one), a green (steamer bag broccoli, spinach salad, green beans, whatever), and a bean or nut or seed or dairy protein on a plate. It sounds like she'd be almost as happy with an Ensure, so keep those around too.
posted by Lyn Never at 4:15 PM on May 26, 2015

Response by poster: I'd love any recipes that you all recommend!

Also? Two more for the She Doesn't Like list: She hates yogurt. And Ensure is no-go because Dad had to drink it while he was dying, so she's dead set against trying it herself.

Everything else sounds great, please keep them coming! She loves beans, so that's not a problem.
posted by clone boulevard at 4:23 PM on May 26, 2015

Quinoa edamame salad? (Quinoa is higher in protein than most other grains)
posted by kbuxton at 4:25 PM on May 26, 2015

Best answer: You want old -school vegetarian cookbooks -- The Vegetarian Epicure is one, Moosewood Restaurant New Classics is another (Moosewood has a lot but look for older ones). Vegetarian Epicure is all kinds of cheese and eggs and not of a lot of tofu/etc. as a I recall (also not the healthiest in that the recipes are fairly high in fat, but may be a good transition for someone who was used to eating meet). Moosewood can be a little tofu-y, but even when it toys with more "exotic" flavor it's pretty straightforward -- lots of pastas and casseroles and such (this inspired me to get it back out and look at it and it's actually pretty fun).

Both have fairly simple recipes that are almost exclusively grocery-store friendly.

And certainly, meat subs have their place. There is nothing wrong with a meal of a fake chicken patty, frozen peas and some kind of potato product (baked/oven fries/tater tots) or whatever.
posted by darksong at 4:29 PM on May 26, 2015 [3 favorites]

Best answer: This sounds like a stressful situation for you! Hang in there.

Gardein's frozen fake ground beef is so useful. Brown it a little in a skillet, add to tomato sauce, put on pasta. Or make a bean-centric chili with it.

Egg noodles are something I keep around for protein-boosting a meal; they're delicious, cook quickly, and have more protein than regular pasta.

I also recently bought some hemp seeds from Trader Joe's, which I add to oatmeal (with some maple syrup and nut butter, sometimes also dried fruit) or Greek yogurt for breakfast. They add protein.

If you have access to Costco or Trader Joe's, both have various vegetarian items that can make meals easier (frozen risotto, meatless meatballs, etc.).
posted by wintersweet at 4:31 PM on May 26, 2015 [1 favorite]

Will she eat oatmeal? My go-to breakfast lately has been overnight oatmeal -- take a wide-mouth glass jar, the pint size, and put in around 1 cup oatmeal, a handful of Trader Joe's freeze-dried fruit, maybe a dollop of honey, and then fill the jar the rest of the way up with almond milk. Shake it up good to mix, pop it in the fridge overnight, and voila, breakfast is ready in the morning. You can eat it cold, or chuck it in the microwave for two minutes or less to warm it up. And you can change the amount (just keep it at one part oatmeal to a little-over one part liquid -- I like mine a little... soupier, I guess? So I go a little heavier on the liquid side of the ratio) and the ingredients: regular milk works fine if she hates almond milk, etc. I use unsweetened vanilla almond milk, since the fruit usually adds plenty of sweetness.

Added bonus: you can make a few at a time, and they're fine in the fridge -- I often do a little assembly line of two or three jars at a time.
posted by sarcasticah at 4:41 PM on May 26, 2015 [3 favorites]

You're a nice person! Try these: cook a batch of quinoa, plain (eg with just a little salt and butter). Use some to make Oatmeal (eg add milk brown sugar and cinnamon). The next day, make a cucumber tomato Mint lemon juice salad. The next day, saute it with onions and tiny pieces of celery carrots or other veggies.
Hummus for dinner is fun and healthy. No need to buy. Easy blender recipes.
Multi grain bread. Fried plantains. Quiche with a ton of sautéed greens in it. Puree greens and add to pasta sauce. Ground round (soy based fake meat) in pasta sauce.
posted by leslievictoria at 4:44 PM on May 26, 2015 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Pasta + side veggie + some kind of protein. I like to find recipes where the pasta sauce is something blended so I can basically blend it while the pasta is cooking, then combine everything at the end while only dirtying the one pot (and my Nutribullet for blending).

Pasta recipes:
Roasted Red Pepper
Avocado Pesto Pasta
Vegan Bolognese

Easy veggie Sides:
Roasted Cauliflower
Microwave broccoli
Microwave carrots

For protein:
Generally any can of beans, but especially chickpeas, rinsed and added to the pasta
Quorn brand meatballs
Trader Joes has a lot of options in their frozen section

If she likes Italian, all of Chef Chloe's stuff is good.
posted by tofu_crouton at 4:49 PM on May 26, 2015 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Veggie burgers? MorningStar sells one that has no soy/tofu in it that I like. It doesn't taste like fake "meat" which repulses me.

Chili without the meat -- just beans, onions, peppers, tomatoes, spices. Good topped with some cheddar and/or crackers.

Bean burritos. Cheese enchiladas. Veggie quesadillas. Personally, I have found some frozen bean burritos I really like that I just microwave in a paper towel, and then I crisp up the outside a little in a panini press.

Any sort of bean soup. Also, broccoli cheddar soup with bread. A creamy tomato soup with croutons.

Grilled cheese. Avocado sandwich -- instead of meat, just use avocado and top with lettuce, tomato, onion, whatever.

I'm sure you have spaghetti and lasagna covered. Other choices are cheese tortellini with pesto sauce or a butternut squash ravioli topped with just some parm cheese.

She doesn't sound like a fan of ethnic food, but would she eat a falafel wrap? Falafel is just deep-fried chickpea balls -- serve in a pita with lettuce, tomato, onion, cucumber, whatever you want. Hummus and pita is also nice with some sort of salad.

Any sort of cereal with almond milk would work. Oatmeal is good with protein as well.

Does she eat eggs? I love breakfast burritos with egg and cheese. You can buy good frozen ones that you microwave and crisp up on a panini press or in a toaster oven.
posted by AppleTurnover at 4:49 PM on May 26, 2015 [2 favorites]

Best answer: If you were only cooking for her, I'd recommend that you just make her a lot of cheese dishes, if you're really concerned about protein, but to just indulge any of her wishes since she could eat poorly for 20 years and then what? Same thing as if she eats well.

Since you're cooking for yourself, too, just make a normal meal and give her everything you're eating except the meat.

Will she eat fish or shellfish? The Moosewood Restaurant Cooks At Home has a ton of great recipes, super easy to make. My favorite is what they call "Greek Scampi" but it has shrimp in it. Otherwise, I agree that the Vegetarian Epicure, and maybe Laurel's Kitchen have recipes she would like.
posted by janey47 at 4:54 PM on May 26, 2015 [1 favorite]

Soyrizo is pretty tasty. It may not be the best for her but it's got calories and protein and is tasty and makes vegetables and beans taste pretty good.

For example, this chili. It's also good with eggs.
posted by vunder at 5:09 PM on May 26, 2015 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Okay, this isn't exactly a healthy recipe, but it was one of my favorite ways to make drop biscuits before I started dieting, as it was a way to sneak extra protein and fat into some extremely fussy eaters:

2 cups flour
1 tbsp baking powder
2 tbsp sugar (seriously, this recipe does not need this much sugar, but I love it so)
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup melted butter
1 cup milk
1 can garbanzos, drained

Preheat the oven to 450. In a bowl, mash the garbanzos with a fork until mushy-chunky. Throw in the flour and baking powder and sugar (don't use the full amount! what was I thinking?!) and salt. Once the garbanzos and dry ingredients are mixed, you can stir the melted butter and milk in. Personally, I liked to add a bit of garlic at this stage too, but opinions here were mixed about it. Grease a cookie sheet, and blop out the dough onto it using a tablespoon. It is not unheard of to add just a tiny bit of cheese to the top of each one. Let them cook for about ten minutes.
posted by mittens at 5:15 PM on May 26, 2015 [8 favorites]

What about fried rice? You can make it with anything, including scraps of leftovers which aren't enough that you'd think about serving them on their own. Vegetables of all kinds, eggs, garlic, veggie sausages, even beans; perhaps she'd be willing to try tofu if it was cut very small, fried crisp on the outside, and seasoned/marinated to be mixed in along with everything else in the rice. You can use nearly any kind of Asian-ish (or not?) sauce/flavor profile: soy sauce, sesame oil, even teriyaki sauces and curry pastes/powders.

Also, the secret to good fried rice is that it works best with day-old, refrigerated rice, not fresh steamy rice. And you really can do anything you want with it: if you don't like soy sauce, don't use soy sauce. Use whatever seasonings you want instead.
posted by spelunkingplato at 5:22 PM on May 26, 2015 [1 favorite]

Best answer: breakfast scrambles for dinner. Stir fry veggies (mushrooms, onions, peppers, zucchini) with appropriate salt and herbs in nonstick pan. Add beaten eggs, cook to desired doneness. (Optional: add and melt cheese (grated cheddar, or crumbled feta/goat cheese is excellent) once eggs are mostly done.) Serve as is or with toast. This is my lazy supper and it's so good. And you can add anything to it... corn is great, crumbled soyrizo, etc.
posted by fingersandtoes at 5:29 PM on May 26, 2015 [1 favorite]

Quiche with a big salad!
posted by Stewriffic at 6:08 PM on May 26, 2015 [1 favorite]

Note that the amounts of carbohydrate and protein in the different varieties of the MorningStar veggie burgers mentioned above vary wildly, so if you're looking for a low-carb high-protein one definitely check the labelling.
posted by XMLicious at 6:12 PM on May 26, 2015 [1 favorite]

Get a slow cooker!

Make beans. Especially Lentils!!

Freeze individual serving to reheat in a 350 degree oven. With rice. With veggies. With cheese. Into a casserole with Mexican spices + veggies and corn tortillas and cheese (kinda a Mexican Lasagne,) with quinoa, with cubed cooked sweet potatoes.
posted by jbenben at 6:28 PM on May 26, 2015

I'm not usually a fan of the "here's your meal" services but I wonder if something like Blue Apron or Hello Fresh could help here. Basically, you subscribe and they send you a box of ingredients for however many meals per week you sign up for, along with the recipe that you need to make the meals. This would provide some variety, you'd be sure of the nutrition, and you could experiment with new foods without having to make a lot of decisions.
posted by anastasiav at 7:07 PM on May 26, 2015

Best answer: Eggs. Eggs all the time. Quiche, a quick scrambled egg sandwich, an omelette with whatever veggies are looking wilted, or toss 5 eggs into boiling water for 10 minutes and make egg salad, or poached eggs on toast.

Other easy things we do: Canned soup. Veggie burgers (the ones with visible pieces of vegetable are generally nicer than the ones that are trying to fake meat.) Quesadillas. Beans and rice (Saute onions and peppers in butter, add can of beans, cook rice.) Beans and cornbread, to which you can double the eggs for more protein (make into cornbread muffins for breakfast double duty). "Field Roast" brand veggie sausages are nice. Falafel with hummus, pita, and lettuce (there are just-add-water mixes, and I find it easier to bake them rather than deep fry. They freeze better too.) Cold sesame noodles.
posted by tchemgrrl at 7:14 PM on May 26, 2015 [1 favorite]

You can substitute textured vegetable protein into a lot of ground meat recipes.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 7:39 PM on May 26, 2015 [1 favorite]

I really like this farro dish from Smitten Kitchen. Very easy, one pot. I use farro from Trader Joes.

Speaking of Trader Joes, I recommend both their sweet potato gnocchi and their tomato based one in the frozen section. Very soft, very easy--just heat on the stove.
posted by biscuits at 7:43 PM on May 26, 2015 [1 favorite]

Rice with lentils (just cook it with some water plus a splash of vinegar and some salt) makes a good base for whatever other flavor on top (veggies, cheese, salsa) plus it's a good combination to get some protein.
posted by CrazyLemonade at 8:37 PM on May 26, 2015

Best answer: Also consider getting her to take a multivitamin, or at least a B-12 supplement.

Black beans and rice (with your cheese/condiments of choice) - easy: start rice. Sautee chopped onions in oil until translucent, add cumin, add 2 drained cans of black beans (Goya is a good brand), cook for 30-40 min on med heat, stirring/adding water as needed.

Black bean quesadillas (also try cooked sweet potato, cooked red cabbage, caramelized onions, other fillings...) - cook drained canned black beans or at least warm them for 15 min in oil/butter; warm butter in frying pan on med heat for a few mins, put in tortilla, spoon black beans and cheese (other fillings optional) onto 1/2 of the tortilla. Cook for a few min, fold the tortilla in half, cook for another minute or two, and serve.

Scrambled eggs (with misc spices and/or veggies) and feta cheese with whole grain toast

Egg casserole with broccoli or other veg (can come from frozen veg) - basically crustless quiche made in a casserole dish in the oven, many recipes for this online.

Bean chili

Chick pea stews - that's one recipe I like but there are a million. This would be easy to have in the fridge and pull out a cup for lunch with some toast and cheese.

Stuffed baked potato - stuff it with cheese, chives, sour cream etc.

For tofu, one of the big advantages of tofu is that it can be prepared in so many ways that make it NOT seem like tofu. For example Chipotle has "sofrito" filling which is spicy tofu crumbles. You'd never know it wasn't some kind of meat. So don't necessarily give up on tofu if she's only had it prepared a few ways.

"Quorn" brand makes fake-meat products that are pretty reasonable, eg, they have frozen breaded fake-chicken nuggets, and fake-chicken patties

Portabella mushrooms, or other mushroom dishes, have protein. You can do a mushroom ravioli (they have these frozen), or stuffed mushrooms, or just grilled or cooked portabella caps which end up being similar to burgers in ease of eating.

Macaroni and cheese - try mixing in green peas (try the microwaveable steam-in-bag packs)

Snacky add-ons to keep around:
-Hummus -- good for speading on bread or dipping cut raw veggies in
-Cheese sticks - string cheese or whatever, easy to grab a few bites of cheese from the fridge if she's hungry
-Hardboiled eggs - these are also good in a salad to make it a meal
-Nuts -- candied/spiced nuts; salted/roasted nuts; walnuts or pecans in oatmeal; nut-heavy granola bars like Larabars
-Peanut butter on an apple (etc)
-Frozen yogurt or kefir - Kefir is drinkable yogurt with a lot of protein, so a small cup of it can be a good add-on to breakfast or lunch meal to add some protein.
-Smoothies? The sky's the limit here - yogurt, protein mix, peanut butter, combine them with bananas and fruit and ice cream and you won't know they're there.
-Nutritional powders (Ensure etc make them, or bodybuilding ones) as a topping or mix-in for regular ice cream. You can mix something like Ensure with ice cream in a blender to make a nice milkshake, where you don't really taste the ensure powder.

For restaurant food, try:
- Mexican food is always a good bet -- Chipotle has good options as you've seen
- Panera has some veg soups and sandwiches
- Mediterranean/middle eastern places will have falafel and hummus and other options.
- Spanish, chick pea-based dishes
- sushi place will have: edamame (soy bean snacks), miso soup, vegetable sushi rolls, tempura veggies, tamago (egg) sushi
posted by LobsterMitten at 8:56 PM on May 26, 2015 [1 favorite]

Oh, and Ethiopian food has good veg stuff, lentil dishes etc, from mild to spicy.
posted by LobsterMitten at 8:59 PM on May 26, 2015

Mm, and fried-rice. You can make rice for a dish one night (like beans and rice), make extra and use the leftovers for fried rice the next night - basically, re-cook the rice with eggs and veggies and sauce.
posted by LobsterMitten at 9:01 PM on May 26, 2015 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I think I've plugged this here before, but the Stone Soup blog has a series called "5 ingredients, 10 minutes" - there's a list of these recipes here, which includes 19 vegetarian meals, although some of them would be non-starters with your mother as they contain tofu, indian spices etc. I make a lentil "meatloaf" that starts out pretty similar to this recipe (cool, add a couple of eggs, chuck the mix into a loaf pan and cook) and it's great with whatever you would usually eat with meatloaf. I also love this recipe with butter beans (and without the chorizo, obviously - I have made it with smoked tofu, which was nice, but it's also fine without. ) There's a downloadable ebook of the 5 ingredients/10 minutes recipes here.

I do think that the shape of your nutrition looks different as a vegetarian vs. as a meat eater, and I would suggest focusing on regulating the refined carbohydrates in your diet (refined sugar, white flour, white rice, noodles, pasta etc) rather than being concerned to get as much protein as you did as a meat eater.
posted by Cheese Monster at 9:10 PM on May 26, 2015 [3 favorites]

Best answer: Quinoa salads! I recently asked a question about this, but my favorite is a mix of quinoa, black beans, cherry tomatoes, red onion, and some sort of lime-y dressing!

Relatively fast, easy, and cheap, and you can make a lot of servings at once.
posted by kylej at 10:54 PM on May 26, 2015

Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall does really simple recipes and his books are nice-looking and inspiring. The Three Good Things has many vegetarian ideas, and he also wrote a Veg Everyday which is really nice.
posted by mumimor at 1:15 AM on May 27, 2015

If she likes pasta, look for higher protein pastas. Barilla Plus is available at most grocery stores and is made with chickpeas and lentils. Costco also sells one that is mostly just lentils. More or less the same flavor and texture as regular pasta, so eat it with store-bought marinara, pesto, or alfredo.
posted by hydropsyche at 1:15 AM on May 27, 2015

A hospice nurse just told me that Carnation Instant Breakfast is nutritionally identical to Ensure (and significantly cheaper). Maybe she would try that if it had no "Dad" connection? Particularly if you used a blender and mixed it with her ice cream.
posted by kestralwing at 5:37 AM on May 27, 2015 [2 favorites]

Best answer: Hi. You don't go into your mom's reasoning here at all, but this kind of significant change at 75 could indicate incipient neurological issues. If your mom is having any cognitive or memory issues, or changes in personality, please have her evaluated.
posted by OmieWise at 5:45 AM on May 27, 2015

Your mom's dentures might make it hard for her to eat dry nuts, but you can soften them up. Back when I made steel-cut oatmeal all the time, I'd make a big batch on Sunday night to have for breakfast all week. I'd throw in a bunch of cashews or other nuts after cooking; they softened up in the oatmeal overnight. And mixing in a bit of peanut butter gave even more protein and flavour.
posted by Banknote of the year at 8:00 AM on May 27, 2015

Response by poster: These are great answers, everyone! Thanks so much. Please keep them coming if you'd like. Now I'll need to figure out a rotation and a shopping list. I have a Moosewood Cookbook somewhere in storage, I'll have to see if I can dig it up. We already eat a good multi-grain bread, and we switched to Barilla Plus several years ago, so that's all set. I think I'll start with some of the fake ground beef and see if tacos work that way. I can handle that this week before I do a big shopping.

It occurs to me that I should have added the other complicating factor, that I'm a diabetic and should really be low-carbing it. (Could things be more complicated? So many factors to take into consideration!) I can figure that part out myself though.

OmieWise, unfortunately she's one of those rare birds that actually reads unsolicited charity mailings cover to cover, and while she's been saying for years that she wants to go veg, it was a PETA mailing that finally pushed her over the edge. She wanted to go vegan but I just pointed out no milk in her coffee and no ice cream at night so she let that go. (whew)
posted by clone boulevard at 8:12 AM on May 27, 2015 [1 favorite]

I've never tried it, but everyone in my Weight Watchers meeting (all meat-eaters) was raving about using veggie crumbles for tacos filling or in pasta sauce, as mentioned above.

I know she doesn't like Indian food, but I'm obsessed with Tasty Bite Madras Lentils (also available at Trader Joe's in a generic package). They honestly taste more like Mexican food to me. Not spicy, super tasty. They're shelf-stable and microwaveable.

I also like Fantastic World Foods Vegtarian Chili (that's a link to a 6-pack but you can usually buy individual at the grocery store). It's super easy to make on the stove, and even meat-eaters love it.
posted by radioamy at 9:21 AM on May 27, 2015

Oh also, I've been really into sweet potatos/yams recently. Easy to make in the microwave - stab a few times with a knife, wipe on some olive oil and sprinkle salt, wrap in a paper towel, and nuke for 5-6 minutes. Slice open, pat on a little butter, and you've got a great side.
posted by radioamy at 9:23 AM on May 27, 2015

Oh yeah - I'm a huge carnivore but I keep Beyond Meat crumbles in the freezer, in both the Beefy and Feisty varieties, and we use them to doctor up frozen pizza or leftovers or to make tacos. In both texture and longevity, I prefer them way more than refrigerated meat crumbles or powder mixes. I haven't actually tried the chicken replacement yet, I should pick some up.
posted by Lyn Never at 11:43 AM on May 27, 2015

Beans plus rice is a great nutritional combo. We use Uncle Ben's brown rice which doesn't take too long to prepare.
posted by SemiSalt at 12:45 PM on May 27, 2015

Response by poster: That's funny, Lyn, we tried the Beyond Meat Feisty flavor this very evening as a base for tacos! Next time I will read the package better and not get the Feisty if I'm making tacos, because Mother found it a bit spicy when combined with the taco seasoning. Anyway, we both liked it, so that was a success! And radioamy, I picked up some yams today, too, as I heart them anyway. We'll have those tomorrow with...something?! Anyway, thanks again! I'll stop threadsitting!
posted by clone boulevard at 8:48 PM on May 27, 2015 [1 favorite]

I like beans dumped on top of sweet potatoes. Cuban style black beans are good (simmer an onion and some garlic in some olive oil, add black beans, cumin and a bay leaf, let it cook slow for awhile), but just canned "chili beans" or baked beans (look for the vegetarian ones, obviously) are pretty great, too.
posted by hydropsyche at 3:36 AM on May 28, 2015

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