Going from an omnivore’s life to a veggie one is not always easy. Making the switch itself is just part of the equation. Knowing how to make the switch is another story. For some the change is as easy as changing what’s on the grocery list. For others, the choices at the grocery store can be overwhelming. There’s no need to fret. It is possible to make the switch an easy and low stress one, even in a mixed household. Making the change by looking at one meal category at a time will make more sense of the new way of life.
The breakfast table
Many breakfast items are meatless. Fruit, cereal, hash browns, toast with nut or seed butter, smoothies, and breakfast sandwiches can start the day with a delicious bang. Or go outside the breakfast box and enjoy lunch or dinner leftovers at the start of the day.
Firing up the grill? Throw some fruit on and save some for tomorrow’s breakfast. Watermelon, pineapple, and stone fruit are excellent for grilling.
A fantastic vegetarian or vegan lunch need not be limited to salad and soup. Quick changes on the lunch table can be as easy as placing the order. Enjoy a bean patty on your burger. Have a Greek salad in a pita or wrap. Grab a sub loaded with veggies. If you’re brown-bagging it, make a sandwich with your favorite vegetarian or vegan cold cuts. Pack some fruit, veggies, slaw, or chips on the side to make it a deli classic.
At Sesame Burgers and Brew, veggie diners can enjoy a variety of toppings on their bun or have a black bean patty over a bed of greens. Pictured here is a slider trio. With locations in North Charleston, West Ashley, and Mt.Pleasant, a great burger is not far away.
Go ethnic for dinner
Ethnic restaurants are famous for their versatile menus. Thai, Asian, Mexican, Chinese, Japanese, Indian, and Jamaican restaurants offer at least two vegetarian options. Not dining at an ethnic establishment? Look for the house version of an ethnic dish.
Open for breakfast, lunch,and dinner, Saffron on East Bay Street offers a mix of menu items for both omnivores and veggies. Try the vegetable curry at lunch or dinner.
Take advantage of Charleston’s vegetarian and veg-friendly restaurants for inspiration for your home cooked meals. Puree Organic Cafe, any of the Dellz locations, Verde, Black Bean Company, and The Sprout have extensive plant-based menus.
Check out Puree at breakfast or bunch for their Hearty Breakfast Plate featuring tempeh sausage, a homemade biscuit, mushroom gravy, organic grit cake, and fresh fruit. Glut-free options are available with this and many of Puree’s menu items.
Grab some cookbooks
Get inspiration from vegetarian and vegan cookbooks. Pick some up from any Charleston County Library or visit any bookstore to find the book that appeals to you. There’s something for very style, taste, and budget available.
John Schlimm’s Grilling Vegan Style includes the basics on types of grills and a variety of appetizers, entrees, sides, and more to make your cookout king.
Make some friends
Meetup with like-minded folk. Join Charleston-area plant lovers by joining local vegetarian groups like Charleston Veggies and Vegans, C of C Goes Veg, and Charleston’s Vegetarian Meetup group.