Whether you’re an athlete, a gym rat, or just a bonafide yogi, you can benefit from a plant-based lifestyle that can help fuel your workout performance. So what does a vegan plate look like? Follow these healthy, satisfying whole food meal plan choices that will help reduce calories but won’t shortchange your active lifestyle or your long-term health.
To decrease morning inflammation and increase energy, have a glass of water with lemon juice or a green juice made with kale, lemon, ginger, green apple, and cucumber.
Breakfast (pre or post-workout) Ideas
- A bowl of steel cut or rolled oats mixed with 1/2-1 cup of unsweetened non-dairy milk and water. Dress the oatmeal with either 1/2 a banana or apple, 1-2 tbsp. chia seeds and 1 tbsp. ground flax seeds and stevia if needed;
- A superfood green smoothie (e.g., kale, spinach);
- A whole foods vegan protein powder, unsweetened non-dairy milk, and coconut yogurt or raw almond butter;
- Chia pudding topped with fruit of choice and sliced almonds;
- Steamed quinoa with 1/4 avocado sliced, 3 ounces grilled or sautéed tofu or tempeh, kale, and carrot sticks;
- Quinoa or wild rice cooked with unsweetened non-dairy milk, berries, ground flax and a handful of almonds;
- A baked sweet potato with salsa, kale, and tahini with a cup of plain soy yogurt with chia seeds on the side;
- Tahini spread over sprouted grain cinnamon raisin bread with an apple or orange on the side; or
- Coffee or chai, green, or herbal tea with stevia and/or non-dairy milk if required.
Morning Snack Ideas
- 15-20 raw almonds with celery, red bell peppers, and raw carrots;
- An orange or apple with 1/4 cup raw cashews;
- 1/3 cup raw superfood trail mix made with raw almonds, coconut flakes, mulberries or goji berries, Brazil nuts, and walnuts;
- Unsweetened soy, coconut, or almond milk-based yogurt with some flax and berries; or
- A green juice.
- A large salad with romaine, shredded kale, carrots sticks, 2-3 tbsp. hummus, sliced red bell peppers, roasted sweet potato or roasted squash cubes, 1/4 cup each of edamame, lentils or black beans, 1/4 cup cubed avocado and a lemon, mustard, or tahini based dressing;
- 1 large salad with kale, romaine, arugula salad with carrots, peppers, celery, chickpeas, sunflower or pumpkin seeds, dried raisins or strawberries, and a vinaigrette dressing;
- Seared tofu with roasted butternut squash, steamed kale or spinach, and fresh sliced tomatoes;
- Chickpea salad with an orange or an apple, and a sprouted grain bread on the side;
- A sandwich made from sprouted grain bread, raw almond butter, fresh sliced strawberries or bananas, and a container of unsweetened soy yogurt topped with cinnamon and chia or flax seeds;
- A bowl of oatmeal or steamed quinoa;
- A bowl of vegan chili topped with avocado slices (1/2 cup);
- A simple bowl of lentils, brown rice, sweet potatoes, and kale;
- A simple bowl of brown or wild rice, broccoli, butternut squash, and tempeh; or
- A black bean wrap with tomatoes, corn, avocado and other veggies of choice.
Afternoon Snack Ideas
- An orange with raw trail mix or raw nuts and seeds;
- A green apple with 2 tablespoons raw almond butter;
- Superfood green juice or smoothie;
- A bowl of berries with unsweetened soy yogurt;
- A banana with 2 tablespoons of raw cashew butter;
- Vegan protein pancakes;
- Protein pudding made with a vegan protein powder, coconut flour, stevia, vanilla extract, fresh blueberries and almond milk;
- Raw energy fruit and nut bars;
- Celery, red bell pepper slices and raw carrots; or
- Herbal or green tea.
- Tempeh with sauteed carrots, spinach, and mushrooms;
- A Buddha bowl made with black rice or teff, sesame seeds, avocado slices, broccoli, cauliflower, roasted butternut or zucchini squash, lemon juice to sweeten, black pepper and spices, edamame or chickpeas;
- Breakfast for dinner such as soaked oats with chia seeds, coconut yogurt, and a scoop of vegan vanilla protein powder added, berries or pumpkin added with cinnamon and stevia;
- Stuffed wrap with quinoa, carrots, 1/4 an avocado, chickpeas, tofu and tahini;
- Quinoa with black beans, salsa, sweet potatoes, and kale or spinach;
- Vegan chili or a bean-based stew; or
- Marinated kale salad made with kale, lemon juice, mashed avocado, seasonings of choice, cubed sweet potatoes, and either tofu, tempeh, edamame, lentils, black beans, chickpeas, or quinoa for protein.
Nighttime Snack Ideas
- Berries with non-dairy yogurt;
- Chia pudding made with chia, non-dairy milk, stevia, cinnamon, and coconut flour;
- A square of 80% or higher cacao content dark chocolate with an orange;
- An apple with raw almond butter;
- Pumpkin protein yogurt made with vanilla vegan protein powder, canned pumpkin, stevia, pumpkin pie spice, and non-dairy milk;
- healthy oatmeal cookies (2); or
- A small glass of non-dairy unsweetened milk for extra calcium.