Eating less meat is better for animals, people and the planet. As high welfare, sustainably produced meat is slightly more expensive than that from animal factories, reducing the amount of meat you eat will also mean you save money.
You can reduce your overall meat intake by eating some vegan or vegetarian meals and by reducing the amount of meat you eat in each meal. Here’s some tips on how to do it:
1. Try going meat free for one day a week; sign up for Meat Free Mondays! This 15% reduction in your meat consumption can be massively beneficial to the environment and your health (see this article by Sustain for more information).
2. Make sure you get enough protein everyday from vegetarian sources, like lentils and almonds as protein helps you feel fuller and satisfied for longer. The Recommended Daily Allowance of protein is 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight.
3. Experiment with new grains and vegetables, to add a variety of new flavours and textures to your meals, as eating the same things will become boring. For example, try this buckwheat garden salad.
4. Look to the cuisines of countries with well-known vegetarian dishes such as India and Mexico for inspiration for delicious meals like this sweet potato, lentil and coconut curry.
5. Buy meat on the bone, as bones not only add extra flavour but can also be used to make a stock for another meal, like this delicious chicken noodle soup.
6. Bulk up meat dishes with beans, grains or vegetable. For example, try putting another carrot into a Bolognese. Or if you are making beef burgers, try putting some cooked lentils into the mixture to make lentil and beef burgers.
7. If you really like your meat, add ‘meaty’ flavours by using soya sauce or dried mushrooms, and ‘meaty’ textures like aubergines like this mushroom risotto.
8. Reach for whole and unprocessed snacks rather than vegan junk food – so carrots and hummus or apples with peanut butter rather than a bag of Oreos – as getting maximum nutrition means you will feel the most satisfied with your meal.
9. Use meat sparingly, and as an extra flavour, such as bacon pieces in this Braised Red Cabbage.
10. Try substituting your favourite foods for meat free versions, for example, instead of pre-packaged sausage rolls, try making these Mushroom Sausage Rolls.
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