It’s not always easy to find the inspiration to cook new and exciting dinners every night. We get stuck in a rut, making the same meals over and over again. Why not switch up that rotation and try some of our favorite vegetarian meals? Cutting down on meat has health benefits and it’s easier on the wallet too. Check out our favorites for Meatless Monday and beyond!

 

1. Spinach Pie (Spanakopita)

Ingredients

  • 2 10 oz packages of frozen spinach, thawed and well drained
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/3 of a large sweet onion, diced
  • 8 oz feta cheese
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 3 Tbsp butter, melted
  • olive oil (for sauteing)
  • phyllo dough (found in the freezer section)

How To

  1. Defrost the phyllo dough by taking it out of the freezer about 2 hours before you’re ready to use it. Don’t open the package until ready for use.
  2. Prepare a 9×9 glass baking dish by brushing a thin layer of melted butter on the bottom and sides.
  3. In a small pan, saute the onion and garlic in a little bit of olive oil. Let cool.
  4. In a medium sized bowl, mix spinach, feta, eggs and onion/garlic mixture together.
  5. Open phyllo dough. Place one layer of phyllo on the bottom of the glass dish and brush more butter over top. Repeat until you have 6 layers of phyllo on the bottom of the dish.
  6. Pour the spinach mixture on top of the phyllo dough.
  7. Repeat the phyllo dough process for the top of the spinach pie. 6 sheets,with butter in between each one and on top.
  8. Bake until top layer of phyllo is browned, approximately 40 minutes.

Serve warm!

Recipe adapted from AllRecipes.com

2. Vegetarian Pot Pie

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 8 ounces mushrooms
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 10 oz package of frozen mixed vegetables
  • 2 potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 2 cups cauliflower florets
  • 1 cup fresh green beans, trimmed into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 pie crusts

How To

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F .
  2. Line pie plate with one pie crust and bake for 10-12 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet or saucepan. Cook onions, mushrooms, and garlic in oil for 3 to 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in carrots, potatoes, and celery. Stir in cauliflower, green beans, and vegetable broth. Bring to a boil, then turn heat down to a simmer. Cook until vegetables are barely tender, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. In a small bowl, mix the cornstarch, soy sauce, and 1/4 cup water until cornstarch is completely dissolved. Stir into vegetables, and cook until sauce thickens, about 3 minutes.
  5. Pour the filling into the pastry-lined pie plate. Put the second pie crust over the filling & cut a few slits in the top for venting.
  6. Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes, or until the crust is brown.

Recipe adapted from AllRecipes.com

3. Homemade Pesto with Whole Wheat Spaghetti

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup pine nuts (can substitute walnuts or leave nuts out completely)
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 4 cups loosely packed basil leaves (about 2 ounces)
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • 1 lb whole wheat spaghetti
  • 2 tbsp of starchy water left over from boiled spaghetti

How To

1. Combine nuts and garlic in a food processor; process until minced.

2. Add basil, oil, salt, and pepper and process until blended, scraping sides occasionally.

3. Add cheese and process until smooth.

4. Meanwhile, cook pasta according to the directions on the package. When draining pasta, be sure sure to reserve some of the starchy cooking water & set aside.

5. Once pasta is cooked & drained, return it to the pot and add in pesto. Mix in 2 tablespoons of the cooking water to pesto. Stir until well mixed.

Serve with a loaf of your favorite crusty bread!
Recipe adapted from Cooking Light

4. Three Bean Chili

Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 (15 1/2-ounce) can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (15 1/2-ounce) can red kidney beans, undrained
  • 1 (15 1/2-ounce) can black beans, undrained
  • 1 (14 1/2-ounce) can organic vegetable broth (such as Swanson Certified Organic)
  • 1 (14 1/2-ounce) can no-salt-added diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1/2 cup water (if needed)
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • avocado, sliced

How To

1. Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic to pan; sauté 3 minutes.

2. Stir in water and next 8 ingredients. If mizture is too thick, add in the 1/2 cup water little by little, until desired consistency is reached. Bring to a boil.

3. Reduce heat, and simmer 10-12 minutes.

4. Remove from heat; stir in cilantro.

Top with sliced avocado and serve!
Recipe adapted from MyRecipes.com

5. Spaghetti Squash and Spinach

Ingredients

  • 1 spaghetti squash (about 3 1/2 pounds), halved lengthwise
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 12 ounces sweet OR hot Italian sausage
  • 1 10oz package of frozen spinach (cooked & well drained)
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 350
  2. Place a squash half, cut side up, on a cookie sheet. Brush lightly with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for about 50 minutes.
  3. Let cool slightly. Using a fork, comb the squash into strands and put into a bowl.
  4. Toss with the Parmesan and season with black pepper.
  5. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the sausage and cook until no longer pink, about 6 minutes.
  6. Add the spinach and crushed red pepper and cook until heated, about 2 minutes; season with salt and black pepper. Serve on top of the squash.

Recipe adapted from Rachael Ray

Looking for more delicious recipes? Make sure you follow our Nest category!

Photo Credits
1. Martin Cathrae
2. Rebecca Siegel
3. Jeffrey W
4. Katrin Morenz
5. Rooey
6. The Quinntessential Mommy

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