Week 4 Challenge: Time to Find Your Inner Vegetarian

by Bethany Vessey, Registered Dietitian on January 24, 2013 · 6 comments

Would you like to win a “Cuisinart® Elite Collection 4-Cup Food Processor“?

I have decide to up the ante on the this week’s challenge. The challenge itself is not that crazy but I am asking everyone to become a little more involved.

This week’s challenge is one that I always tried to do and would love some new ideas to keep it going.

Week 4 Challenge: Make and try 2 vegetarian/meatless meal options this week that still contain at least 15 grams of protein/serving!

I always try to make at least 2 meals/week that are meatless or vegetarian. For example trying our Quinoa Veggie Bake recipe or Mediterranean Quinoa Salad would be ways to do this.

My personal plan for this week is to try to make a veggie burger, and felafels pending time and no delivery of our baby:) This is where I got the idea for a contest to win a food processor. These two options will be easier to make with a food processor and remember all our challenges are compounding so this new challenge ideally will become a way of life for us now!

So here’s how you could win this food processor!

This week when you make your 2 meatless/vegetarian meals, if you post the recipes, either on our facebook group or in our comments below, ideally with a picture; however, the picture is not required, you will received 1 ballet towards a draw for the food processor. Therefore if you make 2 recipes and post them both you will have the opportunity to get 2 ballets. To up the ante a bit more for every like and share on your facebook post or comment on your recipe below you will get another ballet towards the draw. So be sure to inspire your friends and family to try your recipes or even better get them to add recipes to the contest also for their own chance to win.

This contest will be kept going for 2 weeks, even though we will have a new challenge next week. So you will have the opportunity to inspire more family and friends to get involved and a greater change to win the food processor.

The draw date for the food processor will be

February 7th, 2013

Many of you may be asking why 2 meatless or vegetarian meal options/week. My theory for doing this myself and ideally motivated others to do the same, is to broaden your meal options ever more than before. How many of you have made homemade felafels or a homemade veggie burgers? How many of you have had quinoa before? Maybe you have not made these options because you feel they would be too hard to make or you would not like them, well time to step outside your comfort zones and try something new! I have no doubt you will be surprised with how much you will enjoy these options and just how easy they are to make.

Speaking in terms of nutrition, choosing to incorporate 2 meatless/vegetarian options in your week can increase your overall fiber intake (week 3 challenge), as many recipes include more veggies, beans, and grains; less overall fat, especially saturated fat, since you are omitting the animal protein; however I do usually still use dairy products in my recipes; decrease overall calories, not always but for the most part many of these recipes can be lower in overall calories as a result of reducing the fat content; and so much more!

So get out your cookbooks, hit up your favorite recipe websites, or try the two recipes list above, if you have not already, and lets get this challenge started!

NOTE: If you find a recipe you would like to try that does not have it’s nutritional breakdown and therefore are uncertain if it meets the minimum 15 grams of protein/serving requirement, use the link below to analyze your recipe.


Good luck everyone! Have a great week and I will keep you all posted on the baby news!

Susan January 24, 2013 at 10:40 am

I love this challenge! I also love quinoa and the veggie bake. I have made it several times but am looking forward to something different. Good luck everyone!

Bethany Vessey January 24, 2013 at 10:51 am

Awesome Susan! Can’t wait to see the recipes you try! Good luck on the challenge and the draw!

Low Carb Mama January 25, 2013 at 12:07 pm

Good challenge, I will try both recipes!

Susan January 28, 2013 at 8:27 pm

Red Lentil Curry

Original recipe makes 8 servings Change Servings Makes
2 cups red lentils
1 large onion, diced
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 tablespoons curry paste
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon white sugar
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon ginger root, minced
1 (14.25 ounce) can tomato puree
1.Wash the lentils in cold water until the water runs clear (this is very important or the lentils will get “scummy”), put the lentils in a pot with water to cover and simmer covered until lentils tender (add more water if necessary). Boil for about 2 minutes, simmer for about 8 covered.
2.While the lentils are cooking: In a large skillet or saucepan, caramelize the onions in vegetable oil.
3.While the onions are cooking, combine the curry paste, curry powder, turmeric, cumin, chili powder, salt, sugar, garlic, and ginger in a mixing bowl. Mix well. When the onions are cooked, add the curry mixture to the onions and cook over a high heat stirring constantly for 1 to 2 minutes.
4.Stir in the tomato puree and reduce heat, allow the curry base to simmer until the lentils are ready.
5.When the lentils are tender drain them briefly (they should have absorbed most of the water but you don’t want the curry to be too sloppy). Mix the curry base into the lentils and serve immediately.

Calorie192 kcal
Carbohydrates 32.5 g
Cholesterol 0 mg
Fat 2.6 g
Fiber 11.3 g
Protein 12.1 g
Sodium 572 mg

I had it with spinach and added a couple Tbsps of gr. flax seed to up the protien. Not sure what else I could have added to up it. I really enjoyed it. It’s not spicy, but more heat could definitely be added. I will add more heat next time. Check out the this url http://allrecipes.com/recipe/red-lentil-curry/detail.aspx I went through some of the reviews and used some of the tips mentioned.

Susan February 4, 2013 at 8:31 pm

Just did some reading and to up the protien in meals, add mushrooms. I cup adds 2g. I never thought of it and I love mushrooms.

Susan February 10, 2013 at 10:01 pm

This doesn’t meet the requirements but thought I would share anyway! In the spaghetti squash recipe I used cherry tomatoes, olive oil instead of vegetable oil. Added red pepper, mushrooms, and pepper. I didn’t have olives and I added the squash to the pan to heat up.

Bonus to this recipes was the seeds! I didn’t rinse them, just let them soaked for a few minutes, drained and patted them dry to keep some of the squash flavoring. Sprayed with olive oil and tossed with 1/4 tsp. of salt. Roasted on pan with parchmant paper @375 for 10-12 min. So good! I purposely didn’t buy storm junk food and near went crazy, but these were helpful with the munchie feeling.


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