Bet your vegan kids are fed up with fake meat-and-cheese sandwiches, kale salads, or grown-up versions of vegan fare. This school year, turn over a new (spinach) leaf with these fast, fresh vegan lunches. No more phony-baloney sandwiches!
Nutty Butter and Fakin' Bacon Rollups Serves 1
In a small bowl, mix almond butter and honey. Spread a whole-wheat tortilla with the mixture, then top with crumbled vegan "bacon." Roll up tightly, and slice crosswise into 6 pinwheels, securing each with a toothpick. Arrange in a Tupperware or metal container, and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Avocado Eggy Salad Serves 2-3
Drain and rinse one can of white beans. Put beans in a bowl and lightly mash them into egg-salad consistency. Add 1/4 cup each minced green onions, red pepper, and celery. Gently stir in half of a mashed avocado, 2 Tbs. vegan mayo, and 1/4 tsp. turmeric (for color). Season with salt and pepper, and serve on bread or rolls.
Garden Pizza in a Pocket Serves 1-2
Preheat oven to 350°F. Cut 2 pitas in half and spread each half with
2 Tbs. marinara sauce. Fill halves with 1/4 cup finely chopped vegetables of your choice. Fill the remainder of each half with shredded dairy-free cheese and vegan "pepperoni" slices, if desired. Wrap each half in foil, and bake for 10-15 minutes. Let cool slightly, then unwrap and serve, or store in fridge.
Tempeh Sloppy Joes Serves 3-4
Heat 1 Tbs. oil in a skillet, and sauté 1/2 cup chopped peppers, 1/4 cup chopped onions, and one package of crumbled tempeh until onions are soft. Stir in 1/2 cup tomato sauce, 1/4 cup ketchup, and 1-3 tsp. chili powder. Simmer for 10 minutes, then serve on whole-grain hamburger buns.
Shells and Peas Salad Serves 2
In a medium bowl, combine 2 cups cooked pasta shells and 1 can drained and rinsed garbanzo beans. Add 1/2 cup each finely chopped spinach, grated carrots, and thawed frozen peas. Stir in 3 Tbs. vegan mayonnaise and grated dairy-free mozzarella cheese, if desired. Season with salt and pepper, and store in Tupperware or metal containers.
Supplement the main course with one of these kid-friendly, animal-free treats:
Fruit kebabs: thread chunks of fruit on a skewer and serve with dairy-free vanilla yogurt for dipping.
Kiwi pops: peel and thickly slice kiwi, then insert a popsicle stick into each slice.
Graham crackers sammies: mix almond butter, unsweetened cocoa powder, and honey to taste, and spread on graham crackers.
Sweet potato fries: pack in a Thermos to keep them hot, and tuck in a small container of ketchup.
Small-sized fruits: try baby bananas, clementines, apricots, and mandarin oranges.
Herbed "Parmesan" Popcorn: toss hot popcorn with garlic salt, dried oregano, and nutritional yeast until well coated.
Veggie dippers with Dilly "Ranch" Dressing: serve edamame, carrots, and red peppers with our savory dip. Serve edamame, carrots, and red peppers with our savory dip (Dilly "Ranch" Recipe).