Have you recently had a meatless meal? Did you realize it at the time? What about your parents or grandparents — do you think they would have chosen to eat a meatless meal out of preference and not necessity? Chances are you may have decided to eat certain foods because they are vegetarian, but people in previous generations ate meatless meals only out of necessity. Families tended to be bigger, so diets were made up of foods that would go a longer way. In addition, modern-day amenities such as refrigeration have come a long way in the last couple of decades.
Today, people choose meatless options for a variety of reasons: budget, religious beliefs or morals, lifestyle choice, environmental concerns, and so on. Regardless of the reasons behind it, vegetarian cooking today is not only easy but also full of possibilities regarding ingredients, flavors (the majority of herbs and spices are vegetarian), combinations and style (fruits and vegetables can add a pop of color to any meal). Whether you are looking for a meal that is lacto-ovo vegetarian (no animal ingredients other than dairy and/or eggs) or completely vegan (no animal ingredients or ingredients derived from animals), your local grocer or farmer’s market is full of possibilities. These can include the classic combinations of beans and rice, pasta and marinara, grilled cheese (yes, there is vegan cheese) and tomato soup, or a nice big salad. If you want to explore the world of meatless eating, the Simple Truth® brand can help, from brown rice to canned or dry beans, from dry quinoa (which can be used like rice) to frozen quinoa options like White Quinoa with Olive Oil and Sea Salt, to the convenient variety of the Meatless line, such as Meatless Breakfast Patties, Meatless Crumbles and Meatless Griller Strips. Consider going vegetarian for a day (or longer if you would like), and let Simple Truth assist you in stepping out of your protein comfort zone.
Sarah Koeninger RD LD is a dietitian licensed in Kentucky and Ohio. As a native Kentuckian, she group up as a Kroger shopper and began working in the Kroger Customer Connect (C|c) shortly after finishing her degree program at Eastern Kentucky University. She holds a Bachelor of Science in General Dietetics and a minor in business and completed her dietetic internship at Good Samaritan Hospital in Cincinnati, OH. Her position within The Kroger Co. has always been in the Kroger Service Center, where she dedicates her time to answering customer questions regarding Kroger and banner brand products, gluten status, food allergens, nutrition label reading, ingredient statements, labeling laws and regulations, food safety and everything in between. Though her diet consists mainly of “healthy foods” – including Simple Truth fresh lettuces, fruits and vegetables, and almond milk – she does LOVE ice cream (as well as frozen yogurt, gelato, etc.) and almost all Italian food (her ultimate favorite being lasagna, thanks to her Italian heritage). She likes to cook though does not always follow recipes exactly (thanks again to her heritage) and loves to bake. She has participated in many sports throughout her life including volleyball, softball and women’s rugby, although she now she maintains her fitness through workouts like kickboxing and yoga, in hopes it will increase flexibility, fitness and patience. She lives with her husband, Kevin, in Erlanger, Kentucky, and is eagerly anticipating the birth of their first child in the Summer of 2013.
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