For a long time, I’ve been friends with vegetarians and part time vegetarians, never really thinking seriously about taking up the lifestyle for myself. Historically, I’ve planned almost all our meals around meat.
It wasn’t until a few weeks ago that I even thought to question our habit. After trying my friend’s black bean burger recipe, my husband and I were ranting and raving at how satisfied it made us feel. “You know, what if we ate vegetarian more often?” I suggested. “Meat is SO expensive.”
That’s when my husband shocked my socks off: “What if we just ate vegetarian ALL the time? I don’t really care about meat that much.” WHAT?! I was thrilled!!!
Of course, we both still love a tasty rare steak, we always eat meat when we’re dining out, and I’m still fixing meat dishes at home two or three times a week. But, part time vegetarianism definitely has some perks:
- I feel so hip when I’m cooking and eating vegetarian! (As much as everyone hates them, I’m a hipster wannabe.)
- Is there anything more disgusting than raw chicken? My gag inducing adventures with that bird are greatly reduced.
- This doesn’t line up with my ideology at all, but I really do smile thinking about happy barnyard animals that didn’t have to die for my meal.
- Now I’m going to sound goody two shoes, but eating a bean-centric meal makes me feel a little more connected to the developing world, where meals of beans and rice are the norm rather than the exception. It reminds me that we really don’t need as much as we have, and I’m grateful.
- My guts feel better after a vegetarian meal! I’m starting to get used to that light but satisfied feeling after supper. It’s addictive!
- My grocery trips feel better with a mostly vegetarian meal plan! It frees up some margin in our budget so I can stock up on sale items, or try something new. Last week I bought nectarines for the first time!
My favorite vegetarian meal is still the black bean burger (pictured above) that started this new habit. Treated with mayo, lettuce, onion, and tomato on a fluffy whole wheat bun… You won’t even miss the meat! I always tweak the recipe, but you can still check out Stephanie’s version here.