Somehow eating a plant-based diet has developed a reputation for being expensive. I think it's just one of those assumptions that goes along with the word "vegan." Last time I checked, vegetables, fruits, grains, legumes and seeds weren't terribly expensive. Some are more expensive than others. And of course the prepackaged vegan food is expensive, but a whole foods plant-based diet is not expensive. We'll share 7 budget friendly vegan meals during this series. Each meal is less than $5 per serving.
Let's start with the easiest...
Spaghetti with Marinara Sauce, TVP and Vegetables
Servings: 4 Cost per Serving: $2.81
If you're inspired you can make your own marinara. Although the savings isn't significant, I like knowing that I've controlled the ingredients and it's really quick.
For this version, I use TVP. You can leave this out if you like and just have veggies. TVP does a great job of providing the same chew that you get when you eat meat. Some people might prefer this.
Spaghetti (or whatever pasta you prefer, I like angel hair and thin spaghetti)
1, 16oz package of sliced mushrooms
2 zucchinis, sliced
1 cup TVP
1 cup water
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon rosemary
1 teaspoon basil
1⁄4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1⁄2 teaspoon sea salt
2 minced garlic cloves
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
1 28-oz ,can crushed tomatoes
- Saute your mushrooms and zucchini in a small amount of water or oil until they are tender and season to taste.
- Set them aside.
- Cook the pasta.
- Boil 1 cup water.
- Pour boiling water over TVP and allow it to absorb the water for 10 minutes.
- In a cold medium saucepan, combine all of the marinara sauce ingredients except the tomatoes and vinegar.
- Turn the heat to medium high and sauté for 1 minute, until the garlic is sizzling and fragrant.
- Add the tomatoes and vinegar.
- Bring to a gentle boil for 30 seconds to 2 minutes.
- Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 15 minutes.
- Add the TVP to the sauce.
- Plate as you normally would, placing the pasta on your plate and topping with the sauce and vegetables.