Quick and satisfying vegan meals can be easily prepared with your own creativity, along with what you have stocked in your pantry, refrigerator and/or freezer. Some of the best (and most delicious) quick recipes that I have come up with were born from desiring a home cooked meal, not having much time to cook, and deciding to experiment with whatever I had on hand! Smoothies are the quickest instant meals. With a good blender, some frozen or fresh fruit and good quality H2O, you can blend a meal together in seconds. A favorite breakfast of mine is to blend together a frozen banana, some frozen raspberries, a handful of organic baby salad greens and a bit of spring water, all combined to make a tasty and satisfying shake. Salads are next up on the simple to prepare scale. I like to pre-wash greens early in the day and refrigerate them, so they are nice and crisp by suppertime. I combine these crunchy, leafy gems with canned garbanzo beans (drained and rinsed), a bit of sliced onion, pretty grape tomatoes and my favorite dressing. This makes a tasty and filling main dish salad. For fancy toppers try jarred artichoke hearts, Kalamata olives, roasted red peppers or cubed tofu. Pasta makes a super easy vegan meal. One of my preferred quickie dinners consists of a flavorful sauce made from combining jarred, low fat vegan marinara with thinly sliced crimini mushrooms and 2 tablespoons of capers. Simmer for fifteen minutes. Toss the sauce with a pound of cooked penne, (al dente of course) and you’ve got perfect pasta with pizazz. Or sauté baby spinach, white beans and chopped garlic in a bit of veggie broth. Let it simmer for 5 to 7 minutes while you cook up some whole grain spaghetti. Toss the spinach sauce with the cooked spaghetti and serve. Jazzy-lish. Soups make the ultimate quick meal because they are satisfying and simple. A great 20-minute soup can be prepared by combining 4 cups of of vegetable broth, plenty of thinly sliced mushrooms, and some fines herbs. Simmer for 10 minutes. Add a 1/2-cup of whole grain rotini and cook another 10 minutes. Soup time! Hard to eat vegan? Nope, it’s easy…and quick too!
Carrot Scallion Soup and Summer Tofu Salad [Vegan]
- 1 package (32 ounces) organic vegetable broth
- 2 carrots, diced
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat leaf parsley (or one teaspoon dry parsley)
- 1 medium scallion with green top, diced
- 1/2 cup orzo, uncooked
- Bring the broth, carrots, parsley, and scallion to a boil over medium heat in a medium sized saucepan. Simmer for 10 minutes.
- Add the orzo and continue to simmer over medium heat for 10 minutes more.
- Ladle the soup into bowls. Serve with whole grain crackers or crusty bread.