Plant-Based Meal Plan

This week’s meal plan is a day late. I’ve been traveling and I don’t know what we have or what we need. Thankfully I’m usually well stocked with our basics so this week, our plant-based meal plan will feature easy meals made from our pantry staples.

Plant-Based Meal Plan

Plant-Based Meal Plan

I haven’t prepped any food yet for this week. There is no batch cooking to fall back on so I’ll make dinners that will have leftovers.

Plant-Based Breakfast

This week, oatmeal will be the breakfast of choice. We will mix it up each day by topping our oatmeal with either raisins and cinnamon, diced apples or peanut butter and bananas. If you want to add some variety to your morning oats check out my Ultimate Oatmeal Guide.

Plant-Based Lunch

In a day or two we will have leftovers to use but until then I’ll rely on sandwiches, veggies and hummus or beans.

Plant-Based Dinner

Monday: I was traveling Monday and won’t get a chance to cook.

Tuesday: Instant Pot Mexican Casserole is really good, really easy to make, uses pantry staples and the leftovers taste great! This meal will make the week go better. 

Wednesday: Instant Pot Chickpea and Rice Soup just as easy, and tastes just as good as the Mexican Casserole on Tuesday. I like to make this one because the flavor profile is completely different. My son likes to take this in his school lunch. It reheats really well.

Thursday: Refried Beans and Mexican Rice are delicious on their own but also good in a tortilla. My kids love it with tortilla chips. Sometimes I’ll put beans and rice on a bed of lettuce and top it with salsa for a Taco Salad.

Friday: Veggie Pad Thai is quick and easy. I have some onions and peppers in the freezer that will be perfect in this dish. I’ll add some fresh carrots and broccoli.

I didn’t purposely choose almost all Instant Pot recipes but these recipes happen to be some of the easiest to make from pantry staples. 

If I get a chance this week, I’m also going to make my Apple Oatmeal Muffins! These make a great snack!

Plant-Based Instant Pot Goulash

It’s finally here! You asked for an Instant Pot version of my Plant-Based Goulash and today I’m delivering. I’m so excited to share this Plant-Based Instant Pot Goulash recipe with you. That’s right, no oil, no meat and no dairy!

Plant-Based Instant Pot Goulash

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You know how much I love my Instant Pot! Here is one more reason, I think this easy recipe tastes even better than the stove top version! 

I am still experimenting with this recipe. It will remain mostly the same but I think I can cut down on the liquid and the pressure cooking time. I’m going to go ahead and post this because I’ve gotten about a hundred emails from those of you who are patiently waiting on this recipe! 

As I make it with small adjustments and get your feedback, I’ll update it. 

Plant-Based Instant Pot Goulash

Instant Pot Lessons

This recipe takes a long time to come to pressure. It’s because it’s full of liquid. Soups usually take a long time for pressure to build. Then, once it’s done, it will seem very soupy. Don’t worry, a lot of the liquid will get absorbed as it cools down.

Plant-Based Instant Pot Goulash

With Instant Pot recipes, the order you put ingredients in can make or break your meal. In many recipes, tomatoes or tomato products can cause weird things to happen. Some foods will cook more slowly with tomato products. Other times, your pot will say “BURN” and you’ll get food stuck to the bottom, preventing it from coming to pressure.

With this recipe, the important thing to remember is to add the tomato products last and do not stir them in. I didn’t have any problem with this recipe burning or sticking but I’m always careful with tomato.

 

I was also nervous about cooking lentils and pasta together but it totally worked. Next time, I’ll cook it for 5 minutes instead of 6 to see how it goes. Both the lentils and the pasta were very soft. 

Plant-Based Instant Pot Goulash

Plant-Based Instant Pot Goulash

Did you grow up eating goulash? This Plant-Based Instant Pot Goulash is made with whole food ingredients, and a few canned products for convenience. Your family will love this hearty comfort food.

Ingredients

  • 4 cups Veggie Broth
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 1/2 cup dry brown lentils
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika (optional)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Soy Sauce (I used Tamari)
  • 1 15 oz can of kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup uncooked pasta, I used macaroni 
  • 1 15 oz can of tomato sauce
  • 1 15 oz can of petite diced tomatoes

Do

  1. Add the veggie broth, onion, garlic, peppers, lentils spices, Worchershire sauce, soy sauce (or Tamari), kidney beans, pasta and bay leaf.
  2. Give it a stir to mix it together.
  3. Then pour in the tomato sauce and petite diced tomatoes.
  4. Put on the lid and lock it in place sealing the lid. Close the vent.
  5. Press Manual or Pressure Cook (depending on your model) and adjust the time to 6 minutes.
  6. Wait for the pot to come to pressure and cook all the way.
  7. Once the pot is done, carefully open the pressure release valve to release the pressure.
  8. Once the pot is depressurized, open the lid and stir. Allow it to cool down before eating. Finish with salt and pepper if needed.

I think this recipe could use less liquid and I’ll be trying it with less soon. The stove top version has a lot of evaporation and this one does not. 

Yield: 5+

Plant-Based Instant Pot Goulash

Plant-Based Instant Pot Goulash

Plant-Based Instant Pot Goulash is an easy and delicious recipe. Your family will love this hearty comfort food.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 6 minutes
Additional Time 30 minutes
Total Time 46 minutes

Ingredients

  • 4 cups Veggie Broth
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 1/2 cup dry brown lentils
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika (optional)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Soy Sauce (I used Tamari)
  • 1 15 oz can of kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup uncooked pasta, I used macaroni 
  • 1 15 oz can of tomato sauce
  • 1 15 oz can of petite diced tomatoes

Instructions

  1. Add the veggie broth, onion, garlic, peppers, lentils spices, Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce (or Tamari), kidney beans, pasta and pay leaf.
  2. Give it a stir to mix it together.
  3. Then pour in the tomato sauce and petite diced tomatoes. DO NOT STIR!
  4. Put on the lid and lock it in place sealing the lid. Close the vent.
  5. Press Manual or Pressure Cook (depending on your model) and adjust the time to 6 minutes.
  6. Wait for the pot to come to pressure and cook all the way.
  7. Once the pot is done, carefully open the pressure release valve to release the pressure.
  8. After the pot is depressurized, open the lid and stir. Allow it to cool down before eating. Finish with salt and pepper if needed.

Notes

Make sure you add the tomato sauce and petite diced tomatoes last and do not stir them.

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Freezer Meals

If you want to make this as a freezer meal go ahead. Cook as instructed but leave out the pasta. Pasta isn’t very freezer friendly. Then when you are ready, defrost the Goulash and warm it on the stove or in the Instant Pot. Cook a quick batch of pasta to add to the previously cooked Goulash.


Have you made this yet? Let me know what you think! I’d love to hear how you adapt it to your family’s tastes. 

Enjoy!

Plant-Based Meal Plan

I’m excited to share this week’s Plant-Based Meal Plan! My newest recipe, the Plant-Based Goulash I’ve been I’ve been talking about is finally on the blog. I’m testing a couple variations and will have the Instant Pot version out soon. Many of you have emailed me requesting it, I’m working on it!

plant-based meal plan

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I’ve also been experimenting with other recipes but they aren’t working out for me. Sometimes recipes come together quickly and easily, and other times we have to test so many variations to try to get it to work.

Plant-Based Meal Plan

The only batch cooking I did this weekend was the new goulash recipe. I made it on Saturday so I could share a step by step instructions in my stories. You can find it in my Instagram highlights. We did our grocery shopping so we are pretty well stocked to make most of our favorites.

Plant-Based Breakfast

It’s always nice to have some Overnight Oats in the fridge. I think my Chocolate Chia Overnight Oats are over due! Is anyone interested in a pumpkin overnight oat recipe? Let me know and I’ll share one. I’m also bringing back an old favorite Instant Pot Breakfast Rice! It’s time for a new batch of my oil-free Pumpkin Granola too!

Plant-Based Lunch

I’ll be having leftover Plant-Based Goulash for lunch almost every day! I can even take it in my thermos when I’ll be sitting in appointments. I may eat other dinner leftovers for lunch too. On of my favorite lunches is a Simple Veggie Sandwich! Bread, hummus and veggies…it doesn’t get much simpler than that. When I have it, I’ll add avocado too.

Plant-Based Dinner

Monday: Plant-Based Goulash leftovers make an easy Monday night meal. It’s very filling and perfect for fall weather.

Tuesday: Breakfast for dinner is always fun! I love this Southwest Tofu Scramble. It’s hearty and delicious! We usually serve it with fruit and toast but a side of Breakfast Rice is good too.

Wednesday: Instant Pot Minestrone Soup is a family favorite! Sometimes I’ll serve it with salad but since it’s full of veggies I don’t worry too much about it. My kids love having bread on the side.

Thursday: Instant Pot Refried Beans is exactly what we need on Thursday night. We can easily choose between Nachos, Tostadas or Burritos. It’s a win for everybody.

Friday: Veggie Burger and oven fries will be a fun Friday night dinner. 


What are your favorite kind of recipes? Instant Pot, stove top or something else? I’d love to know!

Plant-Based Goulash

Many of you have been patiently waiting for this Plant-Based Goulash recipe! It’s finally here!

Plant-Based Goulash

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I will warn you that it’s not traditional goulash but traditional goulash is not plant-based. This tastes exactly how I remember eating it as a kid. 

Plant-Based Goulash

Instead of meat I used lentils and red kidney beans. This has tomatoes, peppers, onions and garlic too. Those are basically my favorite ingredients to put into any kind of soup or stew. I use veggie broth to deepen the flavor and a few other ingredients, mostly spices. 

Pasta is the last thing I add. I usually use macaroni noodles or small shells. 

I started working on this recipe last spring and had it just how I wanted it. The only problem was my recipe was big enough to feed an army! I finally cut it down to 4-5 servings over the summer. Then we moved. I still haven’t found the recipe but I mostly remembered the recipe and tested it again. This latest version is my favorite!

Plant-Based Goulash

Plant-Based Goulash

This Plant-Based Goulash uses whole food ingredients. Feel free to change it up to suit your family’s tastes. If you have kids eating it, you can increase the pasta and decrease the smoked paprika. A bag of frozen mixed veggies are a great way to add more veggies to your meal.

Ingredients

  • 5 cup veggie broth, divided
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 1/2 cup dry brown lentils
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika (optional)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning
  • 1 15 oz can tomato sauce
  • 1 15 oz can petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 15 oz can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons Soy Sauce (I use Tamari)
  • 1 cup uncooked pasta, (I used macaroni) 

Do

  1. Bring 2 cups of veggie broth to a boil in a dutch oven or big soup pot.
  2. Add onion, garlic, bell pepper and lentils. Stir it all together and simmer until lentils are soft and the onions are translucent. About 15 minutes.
  3. Add in paprika, smoked paprika if using, your bay leaf and Italian seasoning. Give it a good stir.
  4. Dump your tomato sauce, diced tomatoes and drained kidney beans into the pot and stir again.
  5. Pour in 3 more cups of veggie broth, your Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce (or tamari) and dried pasta. Simmer for 10 to 15 minutes or until the pasta is soft.
  6. If time permits, you can simmer longer but leave plenty of time for this to cool off before eating. The pasta will continue to absorb the liquid as it sits. Salt and pepper to taste.

If you are adding frozen veggies, feel free to add them when you add the kidney beans.

Yield: 4+ servings

Plant-Based Goulash

Plant-Based Goulash

This Plant-Based Goulash uses whole food ingredients in this hearty and delicious recipe.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes

Ingredients

  • 5 cup veggie broth, divided
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 1/2 cup dry brown lentils
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika (optional)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning
  • 1 15 oz can tomato sauce
  • 1 15 oz can petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 15 oz can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons Soy Sauce (I use Tamari)
  • 1 cup uncooked pasta, (I used macaroni)

Instructions

  1. Bring 2 cups of veggie broth to a boil in a dutch oven or big soup pot.
  2. Add onion, garlic, bell pepper and lentils. Stir it all together and simmer until lentils are soft and the onions are translucent. About 15 minutes.
  3. Add in paprika, smoked paprika if using, your bay leaf and Italian seasoning. Give it a good stir.
  4. Dump your tomato sauce, diced tomatoes and drained kidney beans into the pot and stir again.
  5. Pour in 3 more cups of veggie broth, your Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce (or tamari) and dried pasta. Simmer for 10 to 15 minutes or until the pasta is soft.
  6. If time permits, you can simmer longer but leave plenty of time for this to cool off before eating. The pasta will continue to absorb the liquid as it sits. Salt and pepper to taste.

Notes

If you are adding frozen veggies, feel free to add them when you add the kidney beans.

Recommended Products

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This weekend I’ll make this again and share in my Instagram Stories! You’ll be able to find it in the highlights! Look for it on Saturday!

Find more hearty recipes like this on my Soups, Stew and Chili Page!

Best Veggie Broth

Do you use Veggie Broth in your plant-based cooking? For us, a good Veggie Broth can make or break a meal. Thankfully, I’ve found the best Veggie Broth options!

Best Veggie Broth

Shortly after switching to a plant-based diet I created my Dry Veggie Broth Mix. I missed the deep, savory flavors from my previous diet but wanted to continue to eat healthy. I tried several brands but liked mine the best. Luckily, I’ve discovered a few that I enjoy when I’m not up for making my own.

Best Veggie Broth Options

I’ll share all my favorites and why I like them. I’d love to hear if you know some I should add to the list.

Dry Veggie Broth Mix

Dry Veggie Broth Mix

I may be biased but I’ve heard from countless people that say this Veggie Broth Mix is life changing. Not just good, LIFE CHANGING! I have to agree.

The good news is that you can easily adapt this recipe to suit your tastes. If you can’t have nightshades, just remove those ingredients. If you can’t have salt, leave it out! It still tastes great. The only ingredient that you need to include is nutritional yeast. It pretty much gives it the flavor and is the carrier for the rest of the spices.

I always double the recipe and keep it near my stove for a quick and easy broth. It lasts a long time in a glass jar.

My recipe uses one tablespoon of mix for each cup of water. If you blend it in a blender or food processor it will be finer and you can use less. I add it to soups (obviously) and many other foods like rice, pasta, popcorn and even sprinkle on potatoes or other veggies.

Veggie Broth

Veggie Scrap Broth

No doubt you’ve seen videos and heard of people who use veggie scraps to make veggie broth. It’s a great way to use up the odds and ends of veggies. You just need a bag or big jar and room in the freezer. Then once your bag is full, boil, then strain your veggies.

The downside of this is that you will forfeit room in your freezer, first for the scraps, then for the broth. You’ll also want to make sure you don’t have too many spicy or bitter scraps that may give your broth an off putting flavor. No one wants to sit down to a warm bowl of soup and taste bitter flavors.

Veggie Broth

Store Bought Broth Mixes and Bouillon

Seitenbacher Vegetable Broth and Seasoning is a favorite introduced to me by Anne at Recipe for Life. It tastes great and is perfect for a quick broth. The ingredients are really similar to my homemade version but I’ve been enjoying this one. I haven’t made a batch of mine since we started packing up our kitchen to move.

Better Than Bouillon Organic Vegetable Base is another favorite and the first veggie broth I tried. This one has to be kept refrigerated so it might be slightly less convenient but it tastes fantastic! I’m not as crazy about the ingredient list but the flavor might persuade you.

There are many others out there that I haven’t tried. I encourage you to read the ingredients and buy a small package to make sure you like the flavors. I’ve tried some brands that were not good but had so much I didn’t want to waste.

What’s the best veggie broth for you?

That will depend on your dietary needs and tastes. If there are foods you are allergic to, sensitive to, or just avoiding, making your own broth is the way to go! If you have room in your freezer and a good variety of veggie scraps, try making your own and store it until you are ready. If you don’t have room in your freezer, give my Dry Veggie Broth Mix a try!

Broccoli Potato Soup

Using your Veggie Broth

Veggie Broth isn’t just for soups! I use my veggie broth to give a little more flavor to pasta and rice dishes. It also works well when cooking veggies without oil. Just use a little broth to deglaze the pan and keep veggies from sticking.

I’ve even been known to make me a cup of broth when it’s cold. It’s so comforting!

And yes, soups are always a great choice. Here are a few of my favorites!

Do you use veggie broth? What’s your favorite?