Lunch is the best meal of the day, am I right? I’ve never been a fan of cereals or sweet breakfasts so usually save my appetite up for a feast around midday instead. I’ve been learning more and more about optimising nutrition in vegan meals lately and combined with my love of comfort food have come up with some banging meal ideas.
Sticky bbq cauliflower, roasted cajun chickpeas and cheesy spinach buddha bowl
Protein: 20g Carbs: 48g Fat: 14g
If I have a busy day ahead, I will feel no shame in scoffing a huge plate of food as my first meal of the day to get my energy levels up. I tend to vary the amount I eat and the carb/fat/protein ratio depending on what I have planned for the day. If I’m just going to be sat at my desk for most of the day I won’t eat the same as if I have a day full of running around town and exercising planned.
Spicy chickpeas: Drain one tin of chickpeas, coat in passata, cajun seasoning and cayenne pepper and bake in the oven at around 200°c for twenty minutes or so. They should turn out soft with a slight bite rather than crispy.
Sticky bbq cauliflower: Coat cauliflower florets in Homepride Hickory Smoked Maple Cooking Sauce (this stuff is the bomb) and cook at around 220°c for twenty-thirty minutes, turning half way. Sprinkle with mixed seeds when out of the oven for a boost of protein and chewiness.
Cheesy spinach: Get a dry pan real hot (technical term) and wilt the spinach for a matter of seconds, stirring constantly. Top with nutritional yeast for added vitamin B12 and cheesy flavour.
Toasted bagels topped with avocado, lettuce and sriracha chickpeas
Protein: 18g Carbs: 52g Fat: 32g
One of my fave things to eat for brunch is a bagel with vegan garlic and herb soft cheese. It’s my go to if I’m short on time, but If I want to extend my effort further than just slapping on a spread, I coat some chickpeas in sriracha mayo and top them onto lettuce and avocado and finish with hot sauce.
Broad bean hummus, kimchi and alfalfa on sourdough toast
Protein: 18g Carbs: 75g Fat: 15g
Lately I can’t get enough of kimchi, it’s basically a tangy, spicy version of sauerkraut and goes well in sandwiches, with noodles or anything needing a spicy crunch. I try to eat pickles or fermented foods with most meals for the boost of probiotics, my favourites are gherkins, Japanese pickles, sauerkraut, kimchi, tempeh and miso. Gut health is super important and is definitely something worth researching!
Broad bean hummus: blend up butter beans, rapeseed oil, lime juice, tahini, salt, pepper, garlic, and fresh mint to the texture and taste that you prefer.
Full English breakfast with scrambled tofu
Protein: 28g Carbs: 50g Fat: 28g
When in the midst of a hangover, I crave nothing more than hash browns and some form of cooked breakfast. I tend to just heat up a can of beans, but if I’m feeling extra fancy, will cook them up from scratch. Baking mushrooms in the oven instead of frying them has been a recent revelation of mine, it keeps them from going watery and gives them the perfect bite. I realise this plate is crying out for Linda McCartney sausages but heartbreakingly I was all out that day.
Baked beans: Drain a can of cannellini beans. Heat oil in a saucepan, and heat half a finely sliced onion along with two cloves of garlic, until soft but not browned. Add 1tbsp of tomato purée, 1tbsp brown sugar, 1tbsp of soy sauce and cook for a few minutes. Then, add in the beans and 100g of passatta, and cook until the sauce is thick and the beans are tender. Simple!
Do you have any favourite quick and easy lunch ideas? Let me know!