Preparing a 30-day Veggie Challenge

At some point around the final week of January 2024, I decided to stop drinking alcohol for the month of February. I soon came up with more challenges for this year, such as quitting coffee, sugar and meat.

A break from coffee is arguably what I need most, but I don’t want to miss barbecue season, so I’m doing the veggie challenge first.

That may sound a bit crazy. I know. I’m aware of many ethical and environmental concerns regarding meat consumption, but I don’t think I can give up on meat for always. I do believe that a month without meat can prove a point: you (I) don’t need meat every day. There are plenty of recipes without meat or recipes that can be adapted to be vegetarian, all while maintaining a sufficient protein intake.

So in this post, I want to outline two things.

  1. The foods I intend to consume to replace meat proteins.
  2. What I’ll have for lunch (Jump to recipes)

I’m writing this for two reasons. To help myself and to help you, who might be interested in doing a vegetarian challenge of your own.

Vegetarian foods with reasonable amounts of protein

I won’t write another stupid listicle about “The Best Vegetarian Protein Sources You MUST Know”. There are plenty of those already, and they’re all the same anyway.

In short, the majority of protein intake revolves around four foods: quinoa, lentils, (red kidney) beans and eggs. I want to avoid replacements like tofu because I hate the taste (and soybeans aren’t exactly great for the climate either — but still many times better than meat apparently, which is understandable since they’re mainly grown to feed livestock. Anyway, they definitely go into the oats category — good for you but horrible taste). Fish is a no-fo too. I like it, but eating fish is pretty much the same as eating meat.

During breaks or breakfast, I’ll eat more (Greek) yoghurt, nuts, peanut butter and chia seeds.

FoodProteins per 100g
Peanut butter25
Mixed nuts20
Chia seeds17
Greek yoghurt10
Source: FoodData Central from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (according to Google).

Harvard Medical School tells me I need about 0,8g of protein for each kg of body weight. Considering I weigh around 70 kg (plus a few Christmas kg’s I’m still looking to lose), my recommended protein intake is 56g per day.

I could chug down 200g of peanut butter and get it over with but that might not be the most healthy choice. Alternatively, a simple meal with beans and quinoa would put me close to that target without even taking into account extras from foods with lower protein levels. So I’m not too worried about my protein intake.

The bigger worry is finding enough recipes…

30 vegetarian recipes from around the world

When I think about vegetarian foods, my mind drifts to India and Asia as a whole. Wikipedia has it on good authority that up to 39% of Indians are vegetarian, compared to 7% in my home country, Belgium.

Unfortunately, I’m not too familiar with the Asian cuisine. Fortunately, I’m more acquainted with the two best cuisines in the world and they have several recipes that can be adapted. (Italy and Peru in case you didn’t know.) Mexico does a pretty decent job too of providing veggie recipes, or at least the inspiration for them.

Here’s what’s my full list with what I’ve already eaten and what’s still left (in no particular order). Recipes below.

  1. Tacu tacu a lo pobre
  2. Vegetarian lasagna
  3. Omelette
  4. Cheapick hamburger
  5. Quinoa bowl
  6. Tacos
  7. Chili sin carne (sin carne means without meat)
  8. Egg pie
  9. Burrito bowl
  10. Stuffed shells (pasta)
  11. Veggie pizza
  12. Cheese salad
  13. Tallerines verdes (usually served with meat, but I think I can do without them)
  14. Stuffed potato (gotta love sour cream)
  15. Rice with lentils
  16. Rice with beans
  17. A normal burrito
  18. “revuelto de vainitas”
  19. Falafel
  20. Ravioli
  21. Solterito Arequipeño
  22. Burrito with chili sin carne leftovers, cheese and sour cream
  23. Hummus burrito, inspired by Kerry Campion
  24. Lemony Beans 🤷‍♂️, also shared by Kerry
  25. Risotto

Almost there. Hoping the find a few more recipes and finish the month with lunch at the Indian restaurant in town that I’ve always wanted to visit.

30 quick vegetarian recipes

You know what’s funny? I absolutely hate those recipe websites that have a load of bullshit before they dive into the actual recipe. It looks like I just made one of those pages myself. OOPS. Hope I can make up for it by keeping the recipes really simple.

For each recipe I’ll provide the ingredients, the time it takes, the average amount of protein and an estimate of what the main ingredients cost in Belgium.

Day 1: Revuelto de vainitas

This one’s so easy and you don’t need many ingredients: rice, green beans, eggs and some cheese.

Time: max. 30 minutes
Cost: €6-8 for two servings
Protein: about 20 grams per serving

revuelto de vainitas
Revuelto de vainitas with rice

  1. Chop about 400 grams of green beans into small pieces and boil.
  2. Drain the beans and add to a frying pan with some oil.
  3. Add 4 to 6 eggs and move them around in the pan.
  4. Season with salt and pepper if you wish.
  5. Add some cheese (any cheese you’ve got left at home should do.)
  6. Serve with rice.

Day 2: Quinoa Bowl

A quinoa bowl is a family favourite. There are many ways to prepare one but we always stick to the same ingredients. This time I followed our traditional recipe, left out the minced meat but added green beans and cucumber. The other ingredients are avocado, canned peaches, red kidney beans, tomato, onion, parsil, lemon, quinoa and sour cream.

Time: about 30 minutes if you have the red beans
Cost: €6-10 for two servings
Protein: about 45 grams per serving

Quinoa bowl
Quinoa bowl

  1. Boil the quinoa. The easiest way is to use plenty of water and boil until the quinoa loses its rings. You can add some vegetable stock to the water.
  2. Boil the green beans
  3. Prepare the “pico de gallo”
    • Cut the tomato and red onion into tiny pieces.
    • Chop the parsil.
    • Mix the three ingredients, add salt and squeeze half a lemon on the mixture.
  4. Cut the other ingredients: peaches, cucumber and lastly, the avocado
  5. Heat the red beans. I’ll tell you how to prepare the beans later.
  6. Drain the quinoa and fill the bottom of your plates with it. Now add all the ingredients and finish off with some sour cream.

Day 3: Lentils with rice

Lentils are not very common around here but one of the Peruvian ways to prepare them are actually quite nice. I didn’t really follow my wife’s recipe for this one — I made it better. The ingredients are lentils, carrots, rice, potatoes, laurel leaves, red onion, garlic, dried oregano, tomato and an egg.

Time: about 40 minutes
Cost: €6-10 for up to four servings
Protein: about 20 grams per serving

lentils with rice and an egg on top
Lentils with rice

  1. Let the lentils soak in water some hours before.
  2. Chop a red onion into small pieces and fry with some oil.
  3. Add salt, pepper and some other seasoning such as cumin or paprika.
  4. Mince one or two cloves of garlic and add to the pan.
  5. Chop a tomato into small pieces, add to the pan and let it slow fry until the tomato has dissolved.
  6. Chop the carrot into small pieces, rinse the lentils and add both to the pan.
  7. Add a glass of water, two laurel leaves and some dried oregano.
  8. Let it slow fry until the carrots are soft and the amount of liquid is right for you.
  9. Serve with rice, a fried egg and fried potato cubes*.
    * I cheated and used frozen potato “noisettes”.

There should be enough lentils for four servings. Fortunately, you can easily keep it in the freezer.

Day 4: Chile sin carne

I’ve eaten chile con carne before but I’ve never prepared it myself. So I had to check a few recipes for this one. I mixed a few ideas and selected these ingredients: tomato, passata, red onion, garlic, red kidney beans, canned mais, chilli pepper, dried chilli flakes, green and red bell peppers, coriander, rice, avocado, tortilla chips and seasoning.

Time: about 60 minutes
Cost: €10-15 for two servings
Protein: about 20 grams per serving

chile sin carne with rice, avocado and tortilla chips
Chile sin carne
  1. Chop a red onion into small pieces and fry with some oil.
  2. Add salt, pepper, cumin, paprika and dried oregano.
  3. Mince one or two cloves of garlic and add to the pan.
  4. Chop a tomato into small pieces and add it.
  5. Mince a chilli pepper and it to the pan. (I used half, and it wasn’t spicy enough.)
  6. Cut ½ a red bell pepper and ½ a green bell pepper into small pieces. Add to the mix.
  7. Add about 300 ml of passata and a little bit of water.
  8. Drain the red beans and the mais, add both to the pan, and let it slow fry for 20-30 minutes.
  9. Taste and add dried chilli flakes if it isn’t spicy enough.
  10. Serve with rice, avocado and tortilla chips.
  11. Finish with fresh coriander leaves. If you hate coriander, challenge yourself to 2 or 3 leaves. If you love it, use plenty.

Day 5: Tacu Tacu a lo pobre

Tacu tacu is simple but amazing. In its simplest version, you just combine some leftovers and add an egg on top. With a few extra touches, you can make it even better, though. You’ll need leftover beans, leftover rice, a red onion, parsil, eggs, lemon and avocado. If you can get your hands on some ají amarillo and ají colorado, even better.

Time: about 30 minutes
Cost: €5 -6 for two servings
Protein: about 40 grams per serving

  1. Chop ½ of the red onion in tiny pieces and fry in some oil.
  2. (add ají amarillo and/or ají colorado to the frying pan. Fry for 1 minute on a medium fire.)
  3. Add a scoop of beans, then gradually add rice until there’s about 50/50 rice and beans.
  4. Fry until you have a crusty “tacu tacu”. The hardest part is keeping it whole. An egg might help but it would alter the taste. We’ve not found an alternative yet.
  5. For the salad, soak the onion in water and serve with salt, parsil and some lemon. Cut an avocado into pieces as an extra topping.

Day 6: Beans and nachos bowl

I wasn’t feeling very creative, so I just threw a bunch of things together. For this makeshift platter, you’ll need nachos, beans, sour cream, tomato, bell pepper, red onion, garlic, garlic powder, dry parsley, fresh parsley, vinegar, red kidney beans, lemon, and spices.

Time: about 60 minutes
Cost: €8-10 for two servings
Protein: about 30 grams per serving

Nacho and beans bowl
  1. Chop a red onion into tiny pieces and fry it in a cooking pot. Then, chop some garlic and tomato and add them.
  2. Add spices like salt, cumin, oregano and pepper.
  3. Add a little bit of vinegar (could be normal or balsamic).
  4. Rinse the red beans and add them to the pot. Let it cook for about 30 minutes.
  5. Serve the beans with nachos, pico de gallo, bell pepper and sour cream.
  6. I’ve added some dry parsley and garlic powder to the sour cream for extra taste.

Day 7: Chile con carne burrito

This was really quick and tasty with the leftovers from the chile sin carne. Besides the chile sin carne, you’ll just need tortillas, avocado, grated cheese and sour cream.

Time: about 60 minutes
Cost: €10-15 for two servings
Protein: about 25 grams per serving

Chile sin carne burrito
  1. Heat the chile sin carne.
  2. Fry the tortillas.
  3. Serve with avocado, cheese and sour cream.

Day 8: Pasta with Peruvian salsa verde

Tallerines con salsa verde is a pretty popular dish in Peru. It’s typically served with fried meat but I figured it would make a good veggie dish too. I tried to replace the protein with extra parmesan cheese. Not a problem for me because I adore parmesan. You’ll also need spaghetti, spinach, feta cheese, soda cracker, garlic, pepper, basil, olive oil and milk.

Time: about 30 minutes
Cost: €10 for two servings
Protein: about 25 grams per serving + parmesan cheese

Pasta with salsa verde and cheese
  1. Boil some water in a kettle while you wash a few handfuls of spinach and basil.
  2. Pour the boiled water in a pot and add the spinach and basil for 1-2 minutes.
  3. Now add the spinach and basil to a blender along with olive oil, some feta cheese, one or two soda crackers, salt, pepper and a little bit of milk. Blend. You can add more milk if the sauce is too sticky.
  4. Add the sauce to a frying pan and let it simmer for about 10 minutes while you cook the spaghetti.
  5. Serve with parmesan cheese. (Don’t mind my presentation—I almost started eating but then remembered about the photo.

Day 9: Falafel

We prepared falafel once and didn’t really like it. But of course it’s hard to do a veggie challenge without falafel so we gave it another go. And OMG how different it was. Maybe we used another recipe, maybe we used canned chickpeas last time… I don’t know, but these were heavenly. Here’s what we used: about 250 gr of chickpeas, one small onion, two cloves of garlic, fresh parsley, baking powder, oats flour, and seasoning. For the salad we used lettuce, cucumber and raisins.

Time: about 50 minutes
Cost: €5 for two servings
Protein: about 30 grams per serving

Falafel on top of a salad
  1. Let the chickpeas soak in a large bowl of water. We put the bowl in the fridge for about 8 hours.
  2. Drain and rinse the chickpeas, then blend with the onion, garlic, and parsley. Add seasoning such as garlic powder, cumin, salt, and pepper. Blend well, or the dough will not be sticky enough.
  3. Mix the dough with some baking powder and a little bit of oats flour (just blend uncooked oats for this).
  4. Put the dough in the fridge for 20-30 minutes.
  5. Make little balls. You might need to add a few drops of water to make it stickier.
  6. Deep-fry in a large quantity of oil. Lower heat is better to make sure it’s well-cooked but not burned.
  7. We served with a salad of lettuce, cucumber and raisins.

Day 10: Jacket Potato

If been wanting to make a jacket potato for years. Ever since I ate one in London about ten years ago, I’ve been wanting to eat more. Yet, I’ve only tried it once in that decade and I failed. Fortunately, the result was a lot better this time. These are the ingredients: one big potato per person, sour cream, red onion, bell pepper, mushrooms, parmesan cheese, salt, olive oil, parsley, grated cheese and chives. On a non-veggie day, this recipe calls for bacon too.

Time: about 70 minutes
Cost: €8-10 for two servings
Protein: about 15 grams per serving

Stuffed potato and pepper
  1. Thoroughly clean your potatoes, sprinkle some olive oil on top and put them in the oven for about an hour. (I pinched them twice with a fork too, because some people believe they might explode otherwise. They probably wouldn’t, but why take the risk?)
  2. Chop some red onion, bell pepper and mushrooms. Fry and put aside.
  3. When the potato is baked inside, cut a whole in it and scoop out the flesh.
  4. Mash the flesh and mix with a few scoops of sour cream, some parmesan cheese, parsley and salt.
  5. Mix with the red onion, mushrooms and bell pepper.
  6. Put everything back inside the potato, add some grated cheese on top and put it back in the oven for 10-20 minutes.
  7. (I had more filling than I needed so I filled ½ bell pepper and added feta cheese. It wasn’t bad but it wasn’t great either.)

Day 11: Veggie Lasagna

Store-bought today. Easy-peasy.

Time: about 30 minutes
Cost: €10 for two servings
Protein: depends

  1. Pre-heat oven.
  2. Open package. (Check if the ingredients don’t include minced meat.)
  3. Heat.
  4. Eat.

Day 12: Rice with egg (arroz con doble huevo)

Arroz con huevo is probably one of the most popular dishes in Latin America because it’s so simple and surprisingly delicious. There are different ways to prepare it, though, so we mixed two! CRAZY, huh? You’ll need 3 eggs per person, (leftover) rice and some veggies. I’ll just focus on the onions here.

Time: about 25 minutes
Cost: €5-6 for two servings
Protein: about 20 grams per serving

  1. Chop a red onion into tiny pieces. Fry in some oil at a low temperature and add plenty of white pepper and some salt. (Don’t let your wife take care of it or the onion might get burned.)
  2. In a larger frying pan, add a large scoop of rice. Now add two eggs straight to the pan and move them around so they start sticking to the rice.
  3. Serve with a fried egg (best when the yolk is still a bit liquid), onions, and other veggies like tomato and avocado.

Day 13: Mini hummus burritos

My friend Kerry, who’s been a vegetarian for many years, told me this is one of her favourite recipes. I found a recipe online that showed mini burritos. It looked cute so I used it as inspiration. Here’s how it’s done with fresh hummus (without tahini): chickpeas, garlic, olive oil, parsley, cumin, salt, lemon juice, avocado, tomato, red onion, red beans and tortillas.

Time: about 90 minutes
Cost: €6-10 for two servings
Protein: about 30 grams per serving

Hummus burrito and salad
  1. Let the chickpeas soak in water for about 8 hours.
  2. Change the water, rinse the chickpeas and let them boil for another hour. (Make sure they’re really soft. Mine were still a bit hard and my blender didn’t like it. There was smoke coming out of it. I kid you not.)
  3. While the chickpeas are boiling, open a can of red beans, rinse them and let them boil for 10-20 minutes to make them a bit softer.
  4. Chop a red onion and a tomato. You could add some chopped parsley too.
  5. When the chickpeas are soft, you’re going to blend them with a tiny bit of water, a good quantity of olive oil, a few cloves of garlic, parsley, cumin, salt and juice from ½ a lemon or more. That’s your hummus.
  6. Now mix the onion, tomato, beans and hummus.
  7. Fry the tortillas on both sides. Cut them into four pieces. Add some of the mixture and add some avocado.
  8. Roll up and serve with lettuce to fill your plate.

Day 14: Goat cheese salad

A goat cheese salad has to be one of my favourite salads, yet I rarely prepare a salad at home. Now was a good time. Here’s what I used: mixed lettuce, arugola, a roll of goat cheese obvs, apple, honey, radish, cucumber, vegetable stock, white pepper and bulgur.

Time: about 30 minutes
Cost: €8-10 for two servings (not including honey)
Protein: about 25 grams per serving

goat cheese salad
  1. Boil some water with ½ a cube of vegetable stock and add the bulgur. I believe two glasses of water for a handful of bulgur is about the right quantity.
  2. Cut the roll of goat cheese into slices and at them to a frying pan. While they’re frying over low heat, add some honey and white pepper on top.
  3. Chop an apple into tiny pieces and fry them with the goat cheese for a few minutes.
  4. Cut the cucumber and radish into slices. Serve in a bowl with the lettuce and arugula.
  5. Make a hole in the middle of the bowl to serve the bulgur. Put the fried goat cheese around the bulgur and sprinkle the apples on top.

Day 15: Chickpea burger

I must say I wasn’t too keen on the idea of a chickpea burger before I started this challenge. I was wrong. The burger was out of this world. It takes chickpeas, olive oil, an egg, lots of seasoning, buns, cheddar cheese and ketchup. I believe I was so enthusiastic that I forgot to take a photo.

Time: about 90 minutes
Cost: €8-10 for two servings
Protein: about 30 grams per serving

  1. Soak a few handfuls of chickpeas for about 8 hours. Rinse them and boil in fresh water for another hour.
  2. Blend the chickpeas to make “chickpea flour”. Mix with some olive oil, dried parsley, salt, pepper, cumin, paprika powder, garlic powder, dried onion and whatever seasoning you want really. Finally, mix with one egg. Then I added a little bit of water to make it stickier. Finally, refrigerate for 10-20 minutes.
  3. Make patties and fry them in some oil or butter. I recommend low heat so they’re well-cooked inside. Turn them around after about 8-10 minutes and add the cheddar on top.
  4. Open the buns, add some ketchup, the patties, and some lettuce or tomato if you like. Serve with salad and/or fresh fries.

Day 16: Lemony beans

Another recipe Kerry shared with me. It’s different but nice. My wife didn’t want to try at first but she regretted that decision. I forgot the photo again but it doesn’t matter, it looks much better in this video anyway. My recipe might be a bit different, though. I used: borlotti beans, lemon, spinach, chili flakes, garlic, vegetable stock, onion, white pepper and salt.

Time: about 20 minutes
Cost: €5-6 for two servings
Protein: about 30 grams per serving

  1. Cut an onion into slices and fry over low heat.
  2. Chop a few gloves of garlic and add to the pan. Also add some salt, pepper and dried chili flakes.
  3. Rinse the beans and add those as well.
  4. Add about a glass of vegetable stock.
  5. Clean a handful of spinach and add it to the pan while you stir everything.
  6. Squeeze ½ a lemon on top and serve.

Day 17: Pasta with veggie alfredo sauce

Alfredo sauce is usually served with ham. We left out the ham and added some veggies instead to make some kind of alfredo alba rosa hybrid. The pasta was store-bought. The salsa required: butter, garlic, whipping cream, salt, tomato, spinach, parmesan cheese and basil.

Time: about 40 minutes
Cost: €10-12 for two servings
Protein: no idea

pasta with veggie alfredo sauce
  1. Boil a pot of water for the pasta.
  2. Fry a large cube of butter.
  3. When the butter has melted, add chopped garlic cloves and about 100ml of whipping cream. Stir from time to time.
  4. Chop a tomato into cubes and add to the pan.
  5. Clean a handful of spinach and add to the pan. Don’t forget to keep stirring.
  6. Add some parmesan cheese and the pasta to the pan so it gets covered in sauce.
  7. Serve with some extra parmesan and a few leaves of basil.

Day 18: Solterito Arequipeño

A solterito Arequipeño is a typical plate from Arequipa, a city in Peru (even though they’d love to be their own country). It’s a vegetarian in itself so I didn’t need to adapt it for that purpose. I did need to adapt quite a lot of the ingredients because I didn’t have the right ones. So I used feta instead of fresh cheese, soybeans instead of broad beans, and yellow corn instead of white corn. The other ingredients are red onion, tomato, black olives, salt, pepper, olive oil, vinegar and fresh parsley.

Time: about 20 minutes
Cost: €6-8 for two servings
Protein: about 20 grams per serving

  1. Cut the onion, tomato and cheese into small cubes.
  2. Rinse the beans and the corn. Mix with the other ingredients.
  3. Chop parsley.
  4. Add the parsley and the olives.
  5. Season with salt, pepper, olive oil and a bit of vinegar.

Day 19: Couscous with spinach and mushrooms

Originally, this was a quinoa recipe but I replaced it with couscous because my wife wanted to. It’s a pretty simple dish with a rather low protein load, so I added lots of parmesan cheese. All the ingredients are: vegetable stock, spinach, mushrooms, couscous, parmesan, white wine, onion, parsley and garlic.

Time: about 30 minutes
Cost: €5-6 for two servings
Protein: about 15 grams per serving (without cheese)

  1. Chop the onion and fry over low heat in a pot.
  2. Chop the garlic and add to the pot.
  3. Add couscous and a small glass of white wine.
  4. Add about ½ liter of vegetable stock. You can still add more later if the couscous isn’t soft.
  5. Cut the mushrooms in slices and fry in a pan.
  6. Clean the spinach and add to the pan for a few minutes.
  7. Bring it all together and serve with parsley and parmesan.

Day 20: Veggie pizza

A veggie pizza is really dependent on your liking. I think they’re also great with eggplant but I forgot to add some.

Time: about 25 minutes
Cost: €5-15 for two servings

  1. Buy or make pizza dough.
  2. Mix passata with some olive oil and oregano. Cover the pizza bottom.
  3. Add anything you like.
  4. Put it in the oven.

Day 21: Pasta pesto

This pasta pesto was heavenly. But my wife and I actually made different pesto’s. I’ll share both recipes. Here are all the ingredients: fresh pasta, bell pepper, eggplant, basil, olive oil, parmesan cheese, pine nuts, garlic, salt, pepper and cream or vegetable stock and lemon.

Time: about 40 minutes
Cost: €10-15 for two servings
Protein: about 25 grams per serving

  1. Cut the bell pepper and eggplant into slices and fry over low heat.
  2. Cook the pasta al dente.
  3. Fry the pine nuts a little bit without oil.
  4. Mix the pine nuts with basil leaves, two cloves of garlic, salt, pepper and parmesan cheese. Add olive oil while mixing to make pesto.
  5. This was a bit spicy so we took two different directions here.
    • I mixed everything together in a frying pan and added some cream.
    • My wife added vegetable stock and a bit of lemon juice to the pesto.
    • Both were nice.
  6. Serve with more parmesan cheese and a basil leave for decoration.

Day 22: Veggie arroz chaufa

Arroz chaufa is typically served with sausage and chicken but there are so many recipes I don’t think anyone actually agrees on what it should look like. I took our traditional way of preparing it as a basis and added a few things that made it look more like an arroz chino (it’s all the same to me). For this, you’ll need leftover rice, eggs, soy sauce, ginger, garlic, carrot, bell pepper, peas, salt and pepper.

Time: about 20 minutes
Cost: €5-6 for two servings
Protein: about 20 grams per serving

  1. Cut a carrot and bell pepper into small cubes and fry them with some oil.
  2. Boil the peas for a few minutes if they’re fresh but I usually use frozen ones.
  3. Chop some garlic and ginger. Add to the pan.
  4. Add your leftover rice and paint it with soy sauce.
  5. Mix one or two eggs with salt and pepper. Make a thin omelette in another frying pan and then cut it into pieces.
  6. Add the peas and the omelette and mix everything well together.

Day 23: Butternut squash risotto

This is the first risotto I’ve ever made. Most butternut squash recipes don’t call for more veggies but that looked very bland to me. It’s not a great protein-rich dish so I served this with meat for my family. I just added in the usual extra parmesan for some extra protein. Here’s what it takes: risotto rice, white wine, vegetable stock, butternut squash, onion, garlic, peas, mushrooms and parmesan cheese.

Time: about 60 minutes
Cost: €6-8 for two servings
Protein: about 10 grams per serving

  1. Chop an onion into tiny pieces and fry over low heat.
  2. Cut the butternut squash and mushrooms into pieces. Chop some garlic. Fry with the onion.
  3. Add the risotto. (I guess 200 grams). Fry for two minutes with the veggies.
  4. Add a small glass of white wine and let the wine evaporate.
  5. Make about one litre of vegetable stock. Add it to the risotto one glass at a time. Move everything around regularly and only add a new glass when the risotto has absorbed most of the liquid.
  6. Add the peas and parmesan cheese when the risotto is almost ready.

Day 24: Black bean quesadilla

This recipe feels like a mix of things that don’t really go together but I gave it a try anyway. The result was fine but nothing spectacular. It’s pretty simple, though. You’ll need tortillas, sweet potato, red onion, balsamic vinegar, grated cheese, black beans and seasoning.

Time: about 30 minutes
Cost: €5-6 for two servings
Protein: about 20 grams per serving

Black bean quesadilla
  1. Cut the sweet potato into slices and fry with some oil.
  2. Cut the red onion into half circles and fry with oil and water. (I did this on the other side of the same frying pan.)
  3. Rinse the black beans and boil with some water. Add plenty of seasoning and mash it when it’s soft.
  4. Don’t forget to turn the sweet potato and add some extra water so the onion doesn’t get burned.
  5. Set aside the sweet potato and red onion. Mix the onion with a few drops of balsamic vinegar.
  6. Fry a tortilla on one side. Turn around and fill half of the tortilla with mashed beans, camote, red onion and cheese. Close and fry both sides of the quesadilla.


Day 25: to be continued


Time: about 60 minutes
Cost: €10-15 for two servings
Protein: about 20 grams per serving

  1. start

Day 26: to be continued


Time: about 60 minutes
Cost: €10-15 for two servings
Protein: about 20 grams per serving

  1. start

Day 27: to be continued


Time: about 60 minutes
Cost: €10-15 for two servings
Protein: about 20 grams per serving

  1. start

Day 28: to be continued


Time: about 60 minutes
Cost: €10-15 for two servings
Protein: about 20 grams per serving

  1. start

Day 29: to be continued


Time: about 60 minutes
Cost: €10-15 for two servings
Protein: about 20 grams per serving

  1. start

Day 30: to be continued


Time: about 60 minutes
Cost: €10-15 for two servings
Protein: about 20 grams per serving

  1. start

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