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50 Creative Vegetarian and Vegan Recipes You Have Probably Never Thought Of

50 Creative Vegetarian and Vegan Recipes You Have Probably Never Thought Of

Do you ever find yourself scouring your cupboards thinking,”there’s nothing to eat”? Bored with whatever vegetarian dish you have been eating? Ready to shake things up a bit and tantalize your palate?

These 50 dishes are creative vegetarian recipes, and health-conscious too. But being healthy doesn’t have to be boring. Snap out of your kitchen rut with these creative alternatives to traditional dishes.

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Starters and Snacks

  1. Lasagna Stuffed Zucchini: A gluten-free and paleo way to do lasagna from Rate Your Burn.
  2. Black Bean and Corn Stuffed Sweet Potatoes: Like tacos, but healthier, and again from Rate Your Burn.
  3. Quinoa Baked Zucchini Chips with Siraracha Dipping Sauce. Less fattening and starchy than potato chips, with a spicy kick, from Cooking Quinoa.
  4. Margarita Popcorn: Need I say more? From Not Monroe.
  5. Crispy Baked Zucchini Fries with Sriracha Lime Mayo: Not fried, and with a zesty dipping sauce from Tracey’s Culinary Adventures.
  6. Vegan Pesto: Made with healthy omega oil blend from Vega Products.
  7. Vegetarian Thanksgiving Brussels Sprouts Sliders: A healthy holiday starter from Tara Parker-Pope.
  8. Pesto pasta with added protein: Pesto pasta with Edamame for a great meal to stay fit from Cookie + Kate.
  9. Avocado Corn Salsa: A tomato-free salsa alternative, with some creamy avocado added, from Rate Your Burn.
  10. Turkey Veggie Tray: Festive and fun Thanksgiving crudite appetizer from Living Locurto.
  11. Festive Cheese Rounds: In the shape of a pinecone. Beautiful and tasty from Just Putzing Around the Kitchen.
  12. Cauliflower Tots: Get the same bite-sized fun as traditional tater tots, but less carbohydrates and less starch from SkinnyTaste.com.
  13. Ombre Citrus and Thyme Roasted Carrot Skewers: An artful appetizer for any gathering with fall spices from Beard & Bonnet.
  14. Cinnamon Toast Crunch Roasted Chickpeas: Chickpeas are high in calcium, and this is a healthier alternative dish with a sweet and spicy taste from Running to the Kitchen.

Salads

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  1. Roasted Squash Salad with Lemony Tahini Sauce + Feta: A warming winter salad with a light dressing from Naked Cuisine.
  2. Lemon Dijon Beet Salad: Roasted beets complimented by lemon for a savory and healthy salad from Poppies and Papayas.
  3. Lemon Cilantro Avocado Pasta Salad: A fresh, creamy twist on pasta salad full of healthy fats, from Rate Your Burn.

Main Dishes

  1. Crockpot Sweet Potato Lentils: Sweeten up those lentils in this slow-cooked recipe for a cold day from Pinch of Yum.
  2. Vegetarian Orange Chicken Cauliflower: A veggie twist on orange chicken with the low-carb and anti-cancerous benefits of cauliflower, from Vegetarian Recipes 24/7.
  3. Pesto Tortilla Pizza: A clever way to use pesto instead of tomato sauce, combined with tortillas for a quick and easy pizza treat from Cookie + Kate.
  4. Butternut Squash Risotto with Pine Nuts & Balsamic: Butternut squash lends a healthy creaminess to this fall risotto recipe from Delallo.
  5. Cauliflower Crust Pizza: A pizza crust free of dough, gluten, egg, nuts, and yeast for a paleo or gluten-free alternative to pizza from Tickling Palates.
  6. Baked Penne with Pumpkin Cream Sauce: This vegan recipe uses pumpkin instead of tomato, for those looking for a new way to make a favorite dish from Chic Vegan.
  7. Italian Orzo Stuffed Peppers: Orzo pasta stuffed peppers that bake up and make great leftovers from Delallo.
  8. Pizza Roasted Chickpeas: This clever dish puts pizza in a bowl, minus the dough, the carbs, and with the healthy protein and calcium of chickpeas from Amuse Your Bouche.
  9. Creamy Cauliflower Alfredo: This dairy-free, nut-free twist on Pasta Alfredo is creamy, and a clever way to use cauliflower as a sauce from The Detoxinista.
  10. Spinach Basil Pesto: Take pesto one step further by adding iron-rich spinach in for a more tangy flavor from two peas & their pod.
  11. Carrot Pasta with Zesty Garlic Sauce: Who knew you could make pasta out of carrots? Nutrient rich, low on carbohydrates and full of flavor, from Daily Burn.
  12. Cauliflower Steaks with Ginger, Turmeric, and Cumin: These “steaks” are a great vegan alternative to a meat dish, with pungent Indian spices from the kitchn.
  13. Poached Egg over Polenta with Olive-Herb Pesto: Eggs for dinner? But of course, with this elegant egg over polenta dish from Ariel Knutson of BuzzFeed.
  14. Tempeh and Sweet Potato Collard Wraps: Sweet potatoes aren’t just for Thanksgiving anymore. The sweetness and the greens blend perfectly together in this wrap from Laura Newcomer on Greatist.
  15. Ricotta, Kale, and Roast Pumpkin Lasagne: Who knew you could put pumpkin in something other than pie? The pumpkin is great for those tired of boring old tomato sauce, from The Krooked Spoon.
  16. Pesto Quesadilla: This quesadilla uses cannelini beans, for an Italian twist on a quesadilla for a change from Cookie + Kate.
  17. Quinoa Sweet Potato Tacos: Tired of the same old rice and bean tacos? Quinoa and sweet potatoes add a unique and healthy twist to taco night from Cooking Channel TV.
  18. Vegan Stuffed Squash with Dates and Pine Nuts: This is not only vegan, and delicious, but makes for a beautiful presentation in a bowl you don’t have to wash, because it’s made of a squash from Katherine Ratliff at Mind Body Green.
  19. Kimchi Mac and Cheese: This spicy take on comfort food gets its kick from adding in Kimchi, for healthy probiotics from Beard & Bonnet.
  20. Smashed Chickpea Avocado Sandwich: The smashed chickpeas, combined with mashed avocado on the bread of your choice make for a sandwich that holds together nicely and is full of healthy fats and nutrients from Green Valley Kitchen.
  21. Polenta Lasagna with Portabellas and Kale: This lasagna uses polenta instead of noodles, and is also fat-free AND vegan. Yum! From Fat Free Vegan Kitchen.

Sides: 

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  1. Butternut Squash Fries: Who needs potatoes anymore when these are so delicious and much more nutritious? From Rebecca at My Natural Family.
  2. Roasted Brussel Sprout Chips: A crispy alternative to potato chips, and a clever way to cook up brussels sprouts before they go bad in your fridge with this recipe from Rebecca at My Natural Family again.
  3. Roasted (Wish They Were Grilled) Cabbage: When the weather gets cold and you head inside, rather than use your grill, you can still get that grilled, rich taste with this cabbage recipe from Green Lite Bites.
  4. Creative Sauerkraut: If you are a fan of this tasty cultured food, but get bored with eating it the same old traditional way, try these new twists from Thank Your Body.
  5. Roasted Cauliflower and Mushroom Quinoa Salad in Balsamic Vinaigrette: Roasted Cauliflower is a creative way to go meatless and blends well with mushrooms and balsamic from Closet Cooking.

Breakfast

  1. Festive Fall Oatmeal: Add some seasonal apples and some peanut butter for protein to this warming, filling, and delicious bowl to start your day from Lizzie Fuhr of Pop Sugar.
  2. Quinoa Egg Scramble: Both quinoa and eggs are great sources of protein and make a recharging post-workout breakfast to help you build muscle from Lizzie Fuhr of Pop Sugar.
  3. Quinoa Hash Browns and Turkish Eggs: For addded protein and less carbs, combine your hash browns with quinoa, and then Turkish eggs, which use yogurt for a creamy breakfast dish from Cooking Channel TV.
  4. Sweet Potato Pie Smoothie: Sweet potatoes, in smoothies? Add some great fiber, beta carotene and start your day off right with this “pie” in a cup from Laura Newcomer from Greatist.

Desserts

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  1. Hot Chocolate Sticks: These bite-sized popsicles are made in an ice cube tray and are a clever way to whip up a quick and easy dessert treat from Brit + Co.
  2. Pre-Workout Protein Balls: This pre-workout treat is more like a dessert, using protein powder to make cookie dough bites that give you energy and support your workout from Lizzie Fuhr at Pop Sugar.
  3. Egg-Free Mini Pumpkin Pies: If you want a bite size treat to bring to a holiday meal, this vegan pumpkin recipe will do the trick from Fork and Beans.

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Bridget Baker

Web Presence Sherpa

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Last Updated on January 11, 2021

11 Hidden Benefits of Using Oil Diffusers

11 Hidden Benefits of Using Oil Diffusers

Affordable, relaxing, and healthy, oil diffusers are gaining popularity with people everywhere due to their extensive benefits. Oil diffusers work through the simple process of oil diffusion, which uses heat to turn oil into a vapor that is then spread around a living space. Diffused oil can have several relaxation and health-related benefits, including safe scent-dispersion, mosquito and mold defense, stress relief, and more!

Read on for 11 hidden benefits of using oil diffusers.

1. Safe Scents That Make Sense

Unlike candles or air fresheners, oil diffusers release cleansing molecules into your air that work to purify it, not overload it with unhealthy chemicals. Electronic diffusers also do not pose the fire risk that candles do. Plus, they contain the added feature of interchangeability, which means you change oil types for different scents and health benefits.

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2. Stress Relief

Several lab studies have confirmed that diffusing essential oils like lavender have been shown to reduce stress and help relieve anxiety in medical patients. Preliminary studies have also shown that oil diffusers can help alleviate symptoms of depression.

3. Improved Sleep

Diffused oil has relaxing properties that can help people of all ages fall asleep quicker and sleep more soundly. Electronic diffusers not only have the option to mix and match different oil blends (Try a lavender, Bulgarian rose, and Roman chamomile blend to help with insomnia), they also run at a gentle hum that helps relax an agitated mind. Many also come with an auto shut-off feature to help conserve oils once you have fallen asleep.

4. Appetite Control

Much like gum, oil diffusers can help stimulate the senses in a way that works to curb appetite. New research has shown that diffused peppermint oil can help curb appetite by inducing a satiety response within the body. Diffused peppermint oil has also been shown to increase energy.

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5. Bacteria and Mold Killing

When essential oils are diffused in the air, they break down free radicals that contribute to the growth of harmful bacteria. Eucalyptus, thyme, and tea tree oils are especially good for this purpose. Diffused oil is also highly effective when it comes to combating fungal yeast threats, as the oil help makes the air inhospitable for yeasts such as mold. Pine and red thyme essential oils are best for combating mold.

6. Decongestion and Mucus Control

Ever tried Vick’s Vapo-Rub? Its decongesting powers come from active ingredients made from the eucalyptus tree. In principle, oil diffusers work the same way as Vapo-Rub, except they diffuse their decongesting vapor all around the room, not just on your chest or neck. Oil diffusers have been known to cure pneumonia in lab mice.

7. Mosquito Repellant

Nobody likes mosquitoes — but when the trade-off means using repellants full of DEET, a toxic chemical that can be especially harmful to children, mosquito control can often seem like a lose-lose. However, scientists have shown that oil diffusers can be used as a safe and highly effective mosquito repellant. Studies have shown that a diffused oil mixture containing clove essential oil and lemongrass essential oil repelled one type of Zika-carrying mosquito, the Aedes aegypti mosquito, at a rate of 100%.

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8. Pain Relief

While applying oils directly to areas of your body may be the most effective way to alleviate pain, diffusing essential oils can also be an effective means of pain relief. When we inhale healthy essential oils, they enter our blood stream and can help internally relieve persistent pain from headaches, overworked muscles, and sore joints.

9. The New Anti-Viral

Research into the anti-viral effects of oil diffusion is now just gaining steam. A recent study showed that star anise essential oil was proven in medical experiments to destroy the herpes simplex virus in contained areas at a rate of 99%. Another study showed the popular DoTerra oil blend OnGuard to have highly-effective influenza-combating powers.

10. Improved Cognitive Function

Diffusing essential oils has also been shown to improve cognitive function. Many essential oils have adaptogenic qualities, which can work twofold in soothing us when we’re stressed, and giving our bodies a pick-me-up when we’re feeling down or sluggish. By working to level out an imbalanced mood, diffused oils also help us to focus. There are also several essential oils which have been shown to help balance the body’s hormones. With prolonged use, these oils can work to repair the underlying causes responsible for hindering cognitive function.

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11. Money Saving

With ten clear benefits of oil diffusers already outlined, there is one more that should now be obvious: using an oil diffuser will help you to save money. As an anti-viral, bug repelling, and stress-relief solution rolled into one safe product, an oil diffuser used with the proper oils will save you money on products you might otherwise be buying to help cure those pesky headaches or get your kids to fall asleep on time. If you’re wondering just how affordable oil diffusers can be, check the buyer’s guide to the best oil diffusers — you’ll be sure to find one that fits your budget!

Featured photo credit: Jopeel Quimpo via unsplash.com

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