Yoga, like plant-based eating, is a healing and energizing practice. Yoga is great for staying in shape, centering yourself, and mentally dealing with the everyday stress we all encounter in our lives. It is also great because it allows us to listen, fuel, and nourish our bodies.
There is a yoga and diet connection that is plant-based and rooted in non-violence towards animals and a more compassionate outlook towards the environment and our own health. With that said, it’s important to be cautious of what we eat before and after a yoga class. Yoga is typically done on an empty stomach so simple foods like fruit or juice are good to eat before. No matter if you take a yoga class in the morning or at night, nourishing yourself after yoga is crucial – especially if that hot yoga class just kicked your butt!
Sticking to plant-based ingredients and anti-inflammatory foods, making a post-yoga meal can be simple and delicious. Here are 5 clean eating, plant-based meal ideas to eat after yoga class:
Macro Buddha Bowl
A macro bowl has all the components to create a satisfying and well-balanced meal. Following a vegan macrobiotic diet is deeply rooted in yoga practice through balance, nourishment, and plant-based ingredients. Use brown rice and beans as a base for your bowl and build it from there. Rice and beans provide proper protein and fiber for post-workout nutrients. Use one of these Spruced Up Rice and Beans Ideas for extra flavor. From here your options are endless! Begin by adding tons of veggies to your bowl. Add sweet potatoes for hearty antioxidants, dark leafy greens like kale or collards, and learn how to use tempeh in your dishes for extra protein. No macro bowl is complete without a dressing so whip up one of these Amazing Salad Dressings or this Lemon Tahini Dressing for a balanced bowl.
A hearty salad is a yogi’s one true love. A green salad with plenty of vegetables and protein is a light, yet filling meal to eat after a yoga class. Use a healthy alternative to iceberg lettuce, or marinate some kale for the base of your salad. Add some cucumbers, bell peppers, mushrooms and tomatoes, or use a spiralizer and throw in some beets and carrots. To make a filling plant-based salad, add plenty of toppings like fiber-rich sunflower seeds, zinc-loaded pumpkin seeds, almond slivers, or toasted pecans. Make sure to add some protein to your salad for muscle recovery. Try one of these 25 Delicious Vegan Sources of Protein for a topping instead of choosing hard boiled eggs, chicken or beef. For healthy fat, make sure to not forget our favorite ingredient – avocado! If you’re taking an afternoon or morning yoga class, pack one of these Vegan Mason Jar Salads for a post-yoga lunch.
Wraps make a quick and easy meal. With fresh, plant-based ingredients a wrap can be light enough for post-yoga, yet filling enough to fuel you for the day.Wraps can be modified to fit nearly any diet. If you’re gluten-free or low-carb skip the whole-wheat tortilla and try making one of these Grain-Free Wraps and Tortillas. There are so many other wraps you can use besides tortillas as well. Collard green wraps are becoming super popular and are sturdy enough to hold a lot of ingredients. These Hummus Collard Wraps are packed with protein and can be made a day before you eat them for easy grab-and-go. Lettuce also fits the bill for a raw option to for your favorite wrap. Check out these Easy Breezy Grilled Artichoke and Quinoa Lettuce Wraps – they’re also packed with quinoa to give you an added protein boost. If you’re taking an early morning yoga class, make this Spinach and Almond Feta Breakfast Wrap for a delicious egg-free sandwich. Check out these other Creative Ways to Wrap Your Food and more Quick Ideas for Sandwich and Wrap Fillings.
Soup is the perfect plant-based meal to eat after a night yoga class. After a day at work, we all want something easy to cook up when we get home. Soup is perfect for a simple meal because you can throw in whatever ingredients you have on hand. Start with this Oil-Free Vegan Vegetable Broth and add in loads of vegetables such as kale, sliced carrots, and chopped potatoes. In the summertime add in leftover summer squash and tomatoes, and in the autumn add in root vegetables like beets and winter squash. For a broth based soup add healthy grains in too. Try out barley, farro or even whole grain pasta. Homemade ramen soup can also be extremely healthy and filling when made plant-based. Miso soup makes a clean, broth-based soup to eat after yoga, and can be made in only 10 minutes! For a more filling soup, make this Vegetable Lentil Soup. Lentil and bean soups add protein and substance to your dinner. The best thing about soup is that you can quickly whip up a big pot and eat it all week long.
Opt out of the tuna, salmon, and crab and reinvent vegan sushi for a post-yoga meal instead. There are many quick stop restaurants that serve vegetable sushi, but you can also easily make your own at home. (Don’t fret – homemade sushi isn’t as hard as it may seem!) All you need is to learn how to chop vegetables and make sushi rice, and some time to make the perfect roll just how you like it. Stick to the classic carrot, cucumber, and avocado and then add in a protein like plain tofu or tempeh. Instead of always using white rice choose brown rice or even quinoa, and use nori as a wrapper. Try out this Vegan California Roll for a classic taste, or be more colorful and make this Crispy Tofu and Rainbow Veg Sushi.
No matter the yoga class or time of day, making a clean plant-based meal after class will help your body thrive. Use these five meal ideas as inspiration, but feel free to create your own plant-based meals. Remember to stick to a balanced meal of vegetables, grains and protein and you can’t go wrong. For other post-workout meal ideas, check out these 10 Post-Workout Raw Meals. We would love to hear from you, what’s your favorite food to eat after you namaste?
Lead image source: How to Make Raw Vegan Veggie Stuffed Collard Wraps