Sample Meal Plans for a Plant-Based Diet - dummies

Sample Meal Plans for a Plant-Based Diet

By Marni Wasserman

Make sure you get yourself on track each day with a good, solid meal plan. These sample meal plans for breakfast, lunch, and dinner can help you get started as a new plant-based eater.

Breakfast ideas

Add these ideas to your list to start your day off right:

  • One or two slices of sprouted-grain toast with your nut butter of choice and sliced banana, along with a glass of rice milk (with or without a scoop of protein powder).

  • Half a cup of cooked whole-grain porridge (oats, quinoa, spelt, or buckwheat) cooked with almond or rice milk. Add in dried fruits, such as cranberries, apricots, or raisins; fresh fruits, such as blueberries; nuts, such as almonds, walnuts, or pecans; or seeds, such as pumpkin, sunflower, flax, hemp, or chia.

  • Fresh fruit or green smoothie made of one to two cups of rice, almond, hemp, or coconut milk. Add in banana, berries, ground chia or flaxseeds, a scoop of plant-based protein powder, and a handful of spinach or kale.

Lunch and dinner options

Keep your menu (and belly) full with these meal ideas:

  • Power-packed salad with a base of romaine, leaf lettuce, or arugula. Add in:

    • Veggie protein: 1/4 to 1/2 cup chickpeas, kidney beans, black beans, lima beans, or marinated tempeh or tofu

    • Raw or steamed veggies: Carrots, bell peppers, celery, beets, cucumbers, tomatoes, onions, spinach, or sprouts

    • Healthy fat: Avocados, olives, olive oil, hempseed oil, nuts, and seeds

    • Soaked or toasted sea vegetables: Arame, wakame, dulse, or nori (for a refresher on these)

    • Fresh or dried fruit: Apple, pear, strawberries, raspberries, dried cranberries, raisins, or currants

    • Extras: 1/2 cup cooked whole grain or beans, quinoa, brown rice, barley, millet, or lentils

  • Sandwich with whole-grain, sprouted-grain, or gluten-free bread or a wrap loaded with hummus, avocados, sprouts, veggies, and lettuce.

  • Soup with chunky veggies or a pureed vegetable soup.

    • Base: Water and dried herbs, miso paste, or homemade vegetable broth

    • Veggies: Celery, carrots, onions, broccoli, kale, spinach, bok choy, cauliflower, asparagus, or zucchini

    • Beans: Chickpeas, black beans, white beans, lentils, or split peas

    • Starchy veggies: Sweet potatoes or squash

    • Whole grains: Barley, brown rice, or quinoa

    • Sea veggies: Dulse, arame, wakame, or nori