Choosing what to eat for dinner sounds easy enough, but often ends up being a polarising question amongst the family. Why not take some of the hassle out of the decision making and go for something plant-based for your next night in?
Going plant-based doesn’t necessarily have to narrow down your options (it’s not all about leaves and broccoli!). We’re here to tell you that there’s a way to eat healthier versions of some of your favourite dinners, without sacrificing flavour. We’ve got plenty of meat-free substitutes that are both rich in protein and a great source of fibre, helping to maintain a healthy balanced diet.
So whether you’re plant-based by choice or just trying to cut down on your meat consumption, keep reading to discover some yummy plant-based meals for a family night in.
Swap chicken for a vegan alternative
1. Vegan nuggets
Chicken nuggets are an easy, tasty treat that both kids and grown-ups can enjoy. Whether part of a birthday party garden spread or a weekday family dinner, nuggets have become a staple for many households. And you know what, plant-based nuggets are just as delicious! These are a great high protein meat alternative that the whole family can enjoy as part of a balanced diet. Serve in a wrap as a fajita, or just as they come!
2. Plant-based chicken strips
If you’re craving something slightly more flavoursome, then meat-free chicken strips are another great option. Packed full of southern-style flavour, they make a great plant-based protein food. Pair with a vibrant salad with dressing and coleslaw for a fresh, healthy family meal – perfect for a night in.
3. Vegan chicken dippers
Chicken-free dippers are a quick and easy addition to any kids’ meal and a popular choice for the whole family. Even the fussiest eaters will love the taste of this healthy meat replacement. Serve with potato waffles and peas for a crowd-pleasing, well-balanced meal.
Try a tasty red meat alternative
1. Plant-based Bolognese
Cutting down on your red meat consumption has never been easier – from taking part in meat-free Mondays to finding a red meat replacement for your favourite home-cooked meals.
Even a hearty family favourite like Spaghetti Bolognese can be adapted to be plant-based. The difference with meat-free Bolognese is that it contains more of the good stuff! This vegan option contains plenty of vitamins and veggies for a healthy diet including carrots, parsnips and cabbage. Serve with your favourite pasta and hey presto, you’ve got yourself a tasty plant-based meal that’s ideal for a night in cuddled up on the sofa!
2. Vegan chilli
If you fancy a little spice, swap out your regular chilli con carne for a meat-free chilli. Vegan chilli really packs a punch thanks to its delicious herbs and spices, whilst also giving you all the nutrients you need for a balanced plant-based meal. This super versatile chilli mix is great as part of a Mexican style tortilla wrap, stuffed into a pepper for roasting or just served on top of a bed of rice.
3. Plant-based burgers
If you’re fancying an evening barbeque without the meat overload, then a meat-free burger is the way to go. You can serve them in a bun with some vegan cheese or if you’d like a spicy version, then just add peppers and red chilli hummus. This beef alternative is sure to be a big hit on a weekend night-in.
4. Vegan meatballs
Spaghetti and meatballs is a fail-proof dinner that everyone will love. However, if you fancy changing things up, you can swap out the meat version for vegan meatballs. Try out this vegan meat substitute and serve with your favourite tomato based pasta sauce and vegan cheese for a plant-based version of Spag Bol.
If you like the sound of meatless meatballs, then you’ll love their cousin; the falafel. These little chickpea balls of goodness are bursting with flavour and can be enjoyed hot or cold. Enjoy as part of a Mediterranean style wrap or try on top of a pea salad with tahini dressing for a super fresh evening plant-based meal.
Discover vegan alternatives to your favourite pies and pastries
1. Plant-based chicken pie
There’s nothing better than a hearty chicken pie to warm you up on a cool evening – and a chicken-free pie is just as good! This is a great plant-based food swap if you want the same gravy and veg flavours without the meat. Pair with mashed potatoes and green veggies for the perfect plant-based meal.
2. Vegan sausage rolls
Amazingly, you can find a vegan alternativeto a party food staple: the sausage roll! Opt for a meat-free roll without sacrificing the protein needed to aid your body’s growth, development and repair. You can serve these with baked beans and peas for dinner or simply eat as a snack with a dollop of tomato sauce.
Now that you have all the plant-based food inspiration you could possibly need, be sure to check out Birds Eye’s Green Cuisine range - perfect if you want to adopt a more sustainable lifestyle or try a plant-based, vegetarian or even flexitarian diet! Visit our Green Cuisine recipes page for more inspiration.