Reducing meat in the diet - any tips?

I have to accept I love meat, but I also love veg/fruit/pulses of all kinds.

We’re told meat production is a significant driver of climate change compared to vegetarian/vegan food consumption.

For health related reasons I’m very tempted to go vegetarian/vegan but really don’t know where to begin.

I suspect some of you already have.

I doubt there’s a need to be 100% veggie/vegan to get benefits, but it’s really a question of having good ideas beyond basic and rather boring salads.

Happy to use beans galore, but I tend to try to replicate meat recipes, and there are probably more interesting alternatives.

Does anyone have good suggestions for plant based recipe books?

I’ve perused or listened to books/audiobooks relating to wholefood plant based diets, but again really not sure where to start with recipes.

Any suggestions greatfully received.

Try ordering a slightly smaller steak :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye::stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


Go to Peta dot org and order their free vegan starter kit. It’s got exactly the roadmap you need. Google “simple vegan recipes” and you’ll find countless suggestions - so many that you won’t need a book.

I went vegan 14 years ago, and have never looked back. It can be a little tough at first, especially eating out. But you’ll notice the benefits right away.

Good luck!

Great, thanks bhoyo.

Can’t find that starter pack I’m afraid, but lost of recipes there.

peta dot org /living/food/free-vegan-starter-kit/

Without the spaces.

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On the other hand a middle-aged female friend of ours has been vegan for a few years and recently when she had blood tests etc for a medical condition that hasn’t been revealed to us, the doctor told her that if she didn’t start eating sensibly then she would die. They compromised that she would restart eating chicken once or twice a week. And she is feeling much better…


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How come some Indian survive thousands of years being vegans themselves?

I’m not aware of any person living for thousands of years, Indian or otherwise. Anyway I’m just saying what our friend was told about why she was ill.


I’ve been basically vegetarian for nearly 40 years. When my cholesterol rose about 10 years ago I had to massively reduce eating cheese, and because I have a nut allergy I can’t eat nuts, which are a great source of protein, so I started eating a bit of fish. There are hundreds of veggie and vegan cookbooks, and we have loads, but the three I use most are these.


:slight_smile: You know what I meant!
Many Indian generations survive only on vegetables!

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I am a absolute big fan of pork and beans.
Those hard dried beans that needs soaking overnight. Then slow cooked with plenty of sauce.
I have tried a few times with just beans, but the tasting mostly seems dry and bland.
Some diced pork belly transforms it into another thing entirely. The fat from the rendered pork does magical things.
You don’t need much for this, maybe 200g for a big 2k bean pot.

Asian dishes will mince prawns with pork to make balls for many soups - although in Asia prawns are cheaper than pork - whereas here prawns cost more than oysters per k !

Tofu is another good one. You need the dense pre weighted ones with most of the water drained, or you can do it yourself.
Get those ones packaged in a sealed watery pot. Drain and place on a towel with something slightly heavy on top. Like a chopping board.
After 12/24 hours put them in a dish and marinate with soy sauce for a bit.
This will be awesome deep fried and added to spicy tom yum soup.


As with any diet, you must do it properly, ensuring you get the right protein, fats and so on. A lot of veggies and vegans become ill because they don’t do the research. You need complete protein, so beans with rice is complete, whereas either on their own is not.

Exactly, the was the reason of my question above, the doctor is wrong in saying that the lady must eat meat to stay healthy!

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Yotam Ottolenghi’s recipe books are a must have.
He’s right on it with utilising vegetables within a fantastic range of awesome flavours.
As ever, when you want to get specific with what your eating - the cost goes up.
And your skills in gathering vs hunting is put to the test.

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The only challenge with his recipes is that they generally need about a thousand weird ingredients. This veggie one has some super stuff.


Hey David. Most doctors know SFA about veganism - or nutrition in general. But, of course, that may not be the case with your friend, and I hope she gets better soon.

I have made a few of his recipes although I tend to go for ones with fish or seafood in, but it’s a big commitment and rather like trying to use one of Rick Stein’s books a few years ago (his Asian odyssey or some such) it all looked straightforward until you realise that the line that says “add 200 ml of xyz” is referring to a whole other page covering the recipe for xyz and like Russian dolls, so it goes on.

One of my daughters gave me Ottolenghi’s book Simple as a birthday present and after making one or two things from that, with reasonable success, I tackled a recipe of his in the Saturday Guardian. After two hours with lots more still to do I realised it was apparently taken from the draft of his next book “Complicated”.

I had diabetes and decided to lose weight, One of my many weaknesses was chips. We now have Carrot fries, just dice them like chips a bit of salt , pepper, and olive oil…prefer to potatoes.
Cut courgettes in half bake for 10 minutes, scrape some of the innards after Cooling and mix with cheese , seasoning and re-bake as a lunch snack.

Try this link to a pdf of the Peta guide: yummyvegetarianrecipes dot com slash wp-content slash uploads slash 2011/02 slash PetaStarterKit.pdf

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I’ve taken another approach. I only eat meat at the weekends (along with wine). The rest of the week I eat vegetables, pulses and beans.
My hens provide me with eggs, but I don’t over do omelettes.
I admit Monday to Thursday my meals are simple but I use. Lot of herbs and spices.
Sources of inspiration: Indian, Middle East, Italy and France.