I think most can agree Thanksgiving sneaks up on us more quickly than we would ever expect.
It feels like it’s summer, then Halloween and *bam* the holidays are here!
If you’re anything like me, you’re trying to plan what you’re going to bring to Thanksgiving and thinking:
“What can I make that both plant-based and meat-eaters will rave about?
This year, it’s going to be our Hearty Red Lentil Soup!
Why I love this soup:
It’s filling as a meal itself, or can be used as a side dish
High in fiber and whole, plant-based foods
It can be made ahead of time in big batches and frozen until the big day
If you dislike cilantro (or someone in your family does), you can easily substitute parsley or rosemary.
I try to bring at least one main dish and one dessert for each holiday. That way, I can try other plant-based options that may be available, but know the dish I brought will be plenty filling (until I get to dessert!).
To be honest, I genuinely enjoy holiday meals MORE now that I’m plant-based.
I love feeling content at the end of a meal, instead of overly stuffed wishing I could unbutton my pants or jump into sweatpants right away.
If you haven’t experienced the feeling of being satisfied and content, rather than stuffed like a turkey — I encourage you to give it a try this holiday season (and all days). To help you with that, be sure to check out our blog, “Ditching the Diet Mentality: Intuitive Eating”.
Before I let you go, I want to leave you my plant-based Thanksgiving menu, which I intend to make this year! It’s a combination of our recipes and some from other fantastic plant-based food bloggers.
Soup: Hearty Red Lentil Soup (Recipe Below)
Recipe Adapted from: Well Vegan
Heat a large soup pot over medium-high heat.
Begin by chopping your onions. They don’t need to be minced or small since the soup will be blended later on.
Once the pan is hot, add the onions. Season lightly with salt (this will allow the moisture from the onions to help prevent the onions from sticking when not cooking with oil). Allow the onions to cook for several minutes, stirring occasionally. If and when the onions begin to stick, add 1 tablespoon of water or vegetable broth at a time.
While the onions are cooking, mince the garlic and chop the carrots.
When the onions become translucent (after about 6-5 minutes), add garlic and cook 1 minute, or until the garlic becomes fragrant.
Next, add 2 tablespoons tomato paste, 2 teaspoons cumin, ¼ teaspoon black pepper, and a pinch of cayenne pepper. Stir until well mixed and cook for 2 minutes.
Add 8 cups of broth, 2 cups lentils, and 2 chopped carrots. Allow the mixture to come to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to simmer and cover.
Simmer until lentils and carrots are soft, about 25 minutes.
Taste test the soup. Add salt, if desired. (Salt addition will be very dependent on the type of vegetable broth you use and your taste preference).
Using an immersion blender, blender, or food processor (the immersion blender is much less of a hassle), blend the soup to your desired consistency (completely smooth or leave some remaining chunks).
Add the juice of one lemon and chopped cilantro, parsley, or rosemary. Stir. Taste test one last time.
Serve hot and enjoy!
2 yellow onions, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 teaspoons ground cumin
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
1 pinch cayenne pepper, or to taste
2 quarts (8 cups) low sodium veggie broth
2 cups red lentils
2 large carrots, diced
Juice of 1 lemon
1 handful cilantro, chopped
Salt, to taste
Substitute cilantro for 2 teaspoons dried rosemary, or equal portion fresh parsley.
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