5 Ways to Feed Your Family When One Child is a Vegetarian

According to a 2014 survey from the Vegetarian Resource Group, a third of eight to 18-year olds say they eat vegetarian meals at least once a week. Whether it’s once a week or every night, having a vegetarian at your dinner table when everyone else eats meat can pose a mealtime challenge … or a delicious opportunity!

Check out our five tips below for pleasing everyone, whether they’re vegetarian or not.

How to feed your family when one child is a vegetarian via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen

As busy parents ourselves, we suggest you either prepare one meal for everyone that’s meatless yet still appealing to everyone in your family or choose recipes that can do double duty. Read on for our tips…

Lentil Alphabet Soup via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen #vegetarian

Make Soup: Soups like bean and veggie-filled minestrone are hearty, so the meat lovers at your table will feel full and satisfied after a steamy bowlful. But don’t stop there. Give Liz’s Peanut Butter & Chickpea Soup a try or cook up our Lentil Alphabet Soup made with legumes, vegetables, and pasta.

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Frozen Raspberry & Mango Smoothie Bowl for a Healthy, Fiber-Rich Breakfast or Snack

Combine frozen raspberries and fresh mango with Greek yogurt and chia seeds for this colorful, healthy, and perfect-for-breakfast-or-snack smoothie bowl.

Frozen Raspberry & Mango Smoothie Bowl via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen

The new 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans encourage everyone to eat a variety of fruits and vegetables, limit calories from added sugar and saturated fats, and reduce sodium intake, and this Frozen Raspberry & Mango Smoothie Bowl fits right into those recommendations.

This Frozen Raspberry & Mango Smoothie Bowl is from our newly-released book, The Smoothie Bowl Coloring Cookbook. It’s low in sodium, contains no added sugar, and it has just 1 gram of saturated fat. Each serving provides a much-needed 9 grams of dietary fiber, which can help maintain a healthy weight, reduce risk of diabetes and heart disease, and keep our digestive systems running smoothly.

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Healthy Zucchini Quiche + Finding Common Ground on Diet Advice {Podcast #282}

Eating more plant-based foods and the green light that it’s AOK to include eggs in a healthy, well-balanced diet are two tenants of the new 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, and this healthy Zucchini Quiche fits right in with those diet “dos.”

Quick Zucchini Quiche via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen #vegetarian

Here at Meal Makeover Moms’ Kitchen we embrace eating a variety of foods with an emphasis on consuming plenty of plants and good-for-you fats, keeping saturated fats and nutrient-devoid, heavily processed foods in check, and choosing foods with a healthy and sustainable environment in mind. Easy, right?

On this week’s Cooking with the Moms podcast, we welcome Sara Baer-Sinnott, president of Oldways, to the show to dish about finding common ground among the dueling diets and scientific advice that consumers see every day in the media.

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Gluten-Free Amaranth Cashew Burfi — A Dessert Makeover {Recipe Redux January Challenge}

This Amaranth Cashew Burfi treat is a healthy twist on a traditional Indian dessert. Made with amaranth, cashews, raisins, oats, ground flaxseed, honey, and cardamom, it’s easy to make, vegan, and gluten free.

Amaranth Cashew Burfi via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen #GlutenFree

We participate in The Recipe Redux blogger cooking challenge, and this month’s assignment was to pick a new ingredient that you’ve never used before and to create something with it. 

We worked with our intern, Lauren, on this recipe and post, and chose AMARANTH as our experimental ingredient! 

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20 Healthy Lentil Recipes + The International Year of Pulses {Podcast #281}

We love lentils—green, brown, red, Beluga, French green—in soups, stews, and salads, but these little legumes can also star in protein and fiber-filled tacos, “burgers,” and even desserts. These 20 healthy lentil recipes should get you well on your way to loving this petite pulse. 

20 Healthy Lentil Recipes / Year of Pulses via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen #LovePulses #IYP2016

On this week’s Cooking with the Moms radio podcast, we celebrate the International Year of Pulses with healthy lentil recipes like our Lentil Alphabet Soup and a roundup of lentil dishes that everyone at your table will love. We chose lentils as our featured pulse because, well, we had to start somewhere!

Click the play button above to tune into this week’s Podcast, and don’t forget to subscribe on iTunes!

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Lentil Alphabet Soup — A Classic Makeover of a Kid Favorite

Vegetarian, vegan, and kid friendly, this Lentil Alphabet Soup is irresistible thanks to the playful pasta, and it’s filled with fiber and protein thanks to the lentils and vegetables. We have no doubt your kids will happily slurp up every last spoonful. 

Lentil Alphabet Soup via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen #PulseFeast #LovePulses #IYP2016

This one pot, savory soup is made with carrots, celery, lentils, and adorable alphabet pasta, and the veggies and lentils are so tiny, even the pickiest eaters at your table will love it.

Lentil Alphabet Soup via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen #PulseFeast #LovePulses #IYP2016

The UN General Assembly has declared 2016 the International Year of Pulses. Why? Because lentils, dry beans and peas, and chickpeas are a nutritious superfood, and they’re sustainable — they have a low carbon footprint and enrich the soil. Pulses are regarded as a food of the future, poised as a powerful solution for feeding the world’s growing population.

Click the play button above to tune into this week’s Podcast, and don’t forget to subscribe on iTunes!

Lentil Alphabet Soup via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen #PulseFeast #LovePulses #IYP2016

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Orange Rosemary Quinoa with Beans and Pecans — A Meatless Meal for the New Year

If you’ve resolved to eat more meatless meals in the New Year, try this easy-to-prepare quinoa bowl flavored with rosemary and orange zest and filled with dried fruit and protein-powered beans and nuts. 

Orange Rosemary Quinoa with Beans and Pecans via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen #quinoa #vegan #glutenfree #vegetarian

I’m susceptible to food obsessions. This year alone, I’ve obsessed over overnight oats, smoothie bowlsspaghetti squash, cauliflower hacks, and just about anything from the kitchens of Chef Yotam Ottolenghi. As for quinoa, it’s been an ongoing obsession, and now that Trader Joe’s sells frozen quinoa that’s ready to eat in less than four minutes, I’m mega obsessed right now.

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How to Roast Spaghetti Squash + a Recipe for Taco-Topped Spaghetti Squash Bowls

Learn how to roast spaghetti squash and then create these playful, gluten free, and vegetarian Taco-Topped Spaghetti Squash Bowls for your family.

Taco-Topped Spaghetti Squash Bowls via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen How to Roast Spaghetti Squash

This recipe adds a fun new twist to taco night. And once you learn my easy-does-it technique for roasting spaghetti squash, dinner will be on the family table in no time.

how to roast spaghetti squash via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen

Don’t be intimidated by spaghetti squash. Follow my step-by-step guide on how to roast spaghetti squash.

Taco-Topped Spaghetti Squash Bowls via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen How to Roast Spaghetti Squash

Start with two smallish spaghetti squash, each weighing less than 2 pounds.

Taco-Topped Spaghetti Squash Bowls via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen How to Roast Spaghetti Squash

Carefully slice off the stems and then slice the spaghetti squash in half, lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds and save for roasting. For more on what to do with the seeds, check out Ellie Krieger’s recent story in the Washington Post on, Nutritious Foods You Should Stop Throwing Away.

{If your chef knife isn’t sharp enough to slice the squash in half, poke a few holes in each of the squash and microwave for several minutes to soften a bit.}

Taco-Topped Spaghetti Squash Bowls via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen How to Roast Spaghetti Squash

Season the inside of each squash bowl with extra virgin olive oil and kosher salt and pepper. Place the squash, cut side down, on a foil-lined baking sheet. You can spray the foil with nonstick spray or not. It does not matter.

Taco-Topped Spaghetti Squash Bowls via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen How to Roast Spaghetti Squash

Bake in a 400°F oven for 35 minutes until tender. Remove from the oven, carefully flip, and let cool for 10 minutes. Use a fork to shred the cooked squash into spaghetti-like strands. Keep the strands in the squash shell, and use a “bowl.” {The shell is not edible.}

Taco-Topped Spaghetti Squash Bowls via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen How to Roast Spaghetti Squash

For the topping, I sauteed bell pepper, onion, black beans, cumin, chili powder, and cilantro. I’ve also made this with meat-free Beyond Beef Crumble. (I love that product)!

Taco-Topped Spaghetti Squash Bowls via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen How to Roast Spaghetti Squash

Playful dinner “bowls” are pretty trendy right now (thank you Chipotle), which is why I was inspired to use spaghetti squash as my vessel.

Taco-Topped Spaghetti Squash Bowls via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen How to Roast Spaghetti Squash

Topping options include cheese, avocado, cilantro, and just about anything else you like on your tacos.

Click the play button above to hear all about this recipe on Cooking with the Moms radio podcast, and don’t forget to SUBSCRIBE to the show on iTunes

Taco-Topped Spaghetti Squash Bowls
I've been on a spaghetti squash jag this fall, and I'm having quite a bit of fun dreaming up fun toppings. This topping takes just minutes to prepare, and I think your kids will love it since tacos are always a big hit with families.
Cuisine: Vegetarian
Serves: 4
  • Two 1½ to 1¾ pound spaghetti squash
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • Black pepper
  • 1 large red bell pepper, cut into ½-inch dice
  • 1 small onion, finely diced
  • 1 cup black beans, drained and rinsed
  • ½ cup fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
  • 3 tablespoons all-natural barbecue sauce
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon chili powder
  • Optional toppings: ½ cup shredded reduced-fat Cheddar cheese, 1 avocado, peeled, seeded and diced, fresh cilantro, plain Greek yogurt
  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and lightly coat with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Carefully trim off the squash stems. Cut squash in half lengthwise, and use a spoon to remove the seeds.
  3. Brush the insides of the hollowed out squash with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, salt, and pepper. Place, hollowed side down, on the prepared baking sheet. Place in the oven and bake until tender, 35 to 40 minutes.
  4. While the squash is in the oven, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the bell pepper and onion and cook, stirring frequently, until tender and caramelized, 7 to 10 minutes. Adjust the heat as you go; you don't want the onion to burn.
  5. Stir in the beans, cilantro, barbecue sauce, cumin, and chili powder, and stir to combine. Heat for about 1 minute. Set aside.
  6. Remove the cooked squash from oven and allow to cool about 10 minutes. Shred the cooked squash into spaghetti-like strands. Top each bowl with the bean mixture and optional toppings as desired.
Bonus Nutrients: 40% vitamin A, 110% vitamin C, 30% calcium
It's not easy to cut squash in half, so take your time. To soften the squash first, poke a few holes into the squash, place on a microwave-safe plate, and heat in the microwave about 3 minutes.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: (1 "bowl" with ½ cup bean mixture), Calories: 340 Fat: 17g, Saturated fat: 3.5g, Carbohydrates: 45g, Sodium: 570mg, Fiber: 11g, Protein: 10g


Vegetarian Cheesy Chard & Leek Quiche for Brunch, Lunch, or Dinner + #QuicheFeast

This vegetarian Cheesy Chard & Leek Quiche is made with late autumn Swiss chard picked fresh from my garden and leeks from my CSA. Serve it for brunch, lunch, or dinner!

Cheesy Chard & Leek Quiche via Mealmakeovermoms.com/kitchen

I received free samples of Cheddar cheese from Cabot and a bag of all-purpose flour from King Arthur Flour as part of a #QuicheFeast food blogger cooking challenge. I was not compensated for this post.

The Rainbow Swiss chard gave the quiche a strange yet pleasing pink color, and the leeks provided a subtle onion flavor.

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