Keepin' it simple
Updated: Jan 20, 2020
When we first started going plant-based, I would try to get fancy with meals. I bought a bunch of cookbooks, scoured pinterest and cooking apps to try out often-complicated recipes with complicated ingredients. In the end, we find that our favourite recipes aren't that complicated. I still like my cooking apps but I look for simpler recipes (forks over knives has a great app). We have a busy family of 5 so I need to be efficient! We tend to revert to those familiar recipes we loved before going plant-based and sub out the meat and dairy. Or often it's a grain, corn or potato as the main with a bunch of veggies, salad or fruit on the side. What I'm trying to say is that it doesn't have to be laborious, gourmet meals with ingredients you've never heard of before, particularly in the beginning.
I will also say this... and this may not fly with many plant-based folks...in my opinion, using some packaged vegan foods at the beginning is ok as you transition. Yes, they often contain oil and processed ingredients and I'm all about sticking to a whole foods plant-based diet as much as possible. I will admit that our kids, from time to time, enjoy a packaged veggie burger at family bbqs. In my mind, they are still better than eating the beef cheeseburger. However, while you're transitioning, these can be helpful and serve a purpose. Gradually transition away from those and don't use them as a staple. The goal is not to become a junk food vegan! Otherwise, you're no better off than you were when you were eating meat, dairy and processed foods.
In the end, you want to change habits and the only way I know to do that is to just start. It doesn't have to be complicated. In fact, if you find 1 or 2 things you like, you could eat those same things every day and you would be completely fine. You can live on just potatoes! They are complete in and of themselves. My goal at the beginning was to find 5 meals that our entire family could enjoy. The only way I could get there though was to just start.