This week I’m making plans for next week’s Week of VB6 Eating. Vegan Before 6, you may recall, is the what Mark Bittman calls his flexitarian way of eating. You can read more about it in this post and this one or follow the links at the bottom of the page to purchase the books. We are (that is to say, I am, as the menfolk are united in their on-going disinterest) going to eat vegan until the evening meal. The idea is to increase consumption of fruits, vegetables and whole grains and replace saturated fats with good plant based fats from olives and oil seeds.
I prefer to keep a group of staples on hand so I can avoid meal planning. Even so, I need a loose idea of what I want to eat next week and with the knowledge of what I already have in the pantry and freezer, I can build a shopping list. I’ve also noticed that if nothing’s prepped, I will replace the meat with bread and crackers instead of whole grains, beans, fruits and veggies, which I want to avoid. Experience has taught me hunger will drive all my good intentions right out of the kitchen.
Breakfasts will be smoothies and oatmeal with this vegan french toast from Stuffed Veggies at least one day to break the monotony (I love her site, it’s full of vegan mixes and recipes). I’m opting for quick and easy. Visit this post for more vegan breakfast ideas. Since Vegan Before 6 means no dairy, I’ll need to make sure I have some sort of alternative milk on hand. I usually go with almond or oat milk.
Lunches will also be simple: salads, vegan sandwiches or some sort of grain mixed with any cooked veggies I may have in the fridge or freezer. I have a batch of vegetable broth ready to go for a quick soup as well.
I’ve kind of grown enamored of using veggie noodles or cauliflower rice as a replacement for standard pasta or rice. Not only do they help increase my veggie count for the day, they also help me reduce the amount of simple carbohydrates I consume. I like to take an entire head of cauliflower, cut it down and steam it in the microwave for 5 or 6 minutes. Then I’ll use a potato masher to break the cauliflower into smaller bits (some people like to grate the cauliflower before cooking it if you’d rather try that). Spread the riced cauliflower over a couple cookie sheets and freeze for an hour or so, then transfer to a baggie. The frozen cauli-rice will be easy to measure out for however many servings you’d like.
In addition to these items, there are beans in the freezer and lentils in the pantry. We have some frozen vegetable blends, but a couple of them are sauced with butter. It’s getting difficult to find frozen veggie blends that aren’t sauced in some way and it irritates me no end. For one thing, the sauces aren’t always appealing. For another, the original, unsauced versions were delicious just as they were! Eventually, I may have to get creative and make my own blends either from fresh veggies or repackaging some frozen veggies into blends I want to eat (hmmmm….)
Oh well, that’s a post for another day. In the meantime, I’ve had my eye on some frozen products made by Annie’s (mostly to see if I can duplicate them at home). Next week may be a good time to give a couple of them a try.
How about you? Are you ready to eat the Vegan Before 6 way? If you’re not willing to do it for the entire week, how about for just one day? Click the badge for more information, or use the links below to use my affiliate id to purchase Vegan Before 6 specific books from Amazon.