Healthy Vegetarian Meal Ideas

Making and preparing food can be a great way to take a break from the insufferable pain of studying and release some creative energy. As a university student, I understand the difficulty of having to cook meals between Zoom lectures or quick study sessions, but I definitely enjoy spending time making a hearty meal. Here are some of my favourite vegetarian meal ideas that are wholesome, delicious and completely satisfying.

Burrito Bowls

Seriously, I don’t know a single person who doesn’t enjoy burrito bowls. They are basically deconstructed tacos, so they are super easy to make and 100% customizable. Though most burrito bowls incorporate meat like chicken or beef, I enjoy using tofu in replacement of a heavy protein. Personally, I assemble my burrito bowls with brown rice or white rice, black beans and tofu, with lettuce, tomato, corn, cheese, sour cream and salsa as toppings. It is super easy to make this in bulk and help meal prep for the rest of the week. This is also a great way to get in some vegetables, especially with the amount of binge eating I do.

Vegetable Fried Rice

Just like most recipes, this is totally customizable based on preference. I start by prepping any vegetables I want to add, including broccoli, carrots, onions, peppers and anything else I have in my fridge. Since I do eat egg, I add 1-2 scrambled eggs just to get some protein in the meal. I use a cast iron skillet to cook everything starting with the vegetables and eggs, while separately cooking brown or white rice to be mixed in later. To the cooked rice, I add raw vegetables such as spinach to get in some extra greens and then mix everything together in the skillet. Finally, I add in any spices or salt to preference. This is a go-to meal and can easily be simplified based on time or vegetable preference.

Cannelloni

Okay, who doesn’t like pasta? Cannelloni is one of my go-to meal ideas. It’s creamy, fresh and hearty all at the same time. I use the dry pasta tubes which are easily filled with the spinach/ricotta filling and when made in a tray, they are great for meal planning. The filling consists of thawed spinach, ricotta, parmesan, shredded cheese and salt and pepper for taste. For the cannelloni sauce, I start by mixing some chopped garlic and onion into a frying pan with some oil, and then adding in some tomato sauce or spaghetti sauce, water, heavy cream and basil. At first, I thought long and hard about the messiness about filling the tubes, but a quick hack is to put the finished filling into a pipping bag and pipping it into the tubes, which is super quick. After filling, I lay them into a tray with a little sauce at the bottom and pour the finished sauce over top. Though the process may be a bit time consuming, it is definitely worth it and the end result still blows my mind.

Instead of the usual macaroni and cheese, sandwich or pizza, try these new recipes that may require a bit more effort but result in a lot more satisfaction.