Cutting back on meat might seem like a big step to make, but there are plenty of alternatives to make your lifestyle decision a little easier. Not only is eating less meat considered to be a good thing for the environment, but many people claim to feel the benefits of cutting down meat in their diet. Of course, there is also an ethical choice in eating less meat, and here the ultimate guide to cutting back on eating meat.
Starting by eating out
Cooking veggie or vegan can be intimidating for people just getting into it as there are a lot more ingredients and flavours to consider. One way to ease yourself into a reduced, or no, meat diet is by ordering vegetarian every time you eat out.
It helps to get you used to being in the mindset of not eating meat, plus it will show you how delicious meat-free food can truly be. You won’t have to change your routine of eating out, but you will be eating a slightly different meal.
Looking for inspiration
The fear for people cutting meat down is that they are going to be limited by the types of food they can eat. That’s not the case at all, and you can browse online for proof that you can create delicious meat-free meals in your own home.
Sites like Pinterest can be a source of constant meal inspiration and help to get you excited about creating some of those meals yourself. If you are feeling passionate and inspired about cooking without meat, you’re going to make more of an effort to make it happen. We also have a whole range of vegan bloggers that may inspire you here!
Learn what you like
While some people do, you don’t have to jump right into a meat-free diet. Why not take your time and while considering dropping meat from your diet, try and figure out what alternatives you do like? If you’re a meat and two veg eater, then the meat portion of your meal is pretty important. Finding out what you are going to replace that with can be tough, and going ‘cold turkey’ can have a negative impact, making you more likely to go back to meat.
Cutting out meat from your diet may be a big thing for you, so trying too much too soon can mean you lose enthusiasm for it. Instead, why not set yourself small achievable goals, allowing you to track your progress? For the first week, try eating a meat-free meal just once, then the following week go for two meat-free options. Eventually, you can be completely meat-free, but the progress doesn’t have to stop there. Plan mini celebrations for hitting landmarks, like one week meat-free, one month, six months, etc. That can help to keep you interested in eating less meat until it becomes completely natural for you.
Helping with the cravings
There may be times when you are craving meat, so putting a plan in place to deal with those cravings could be what keeps you going. If you find you are craving something buttery, then try having some avocado on hand. If it’s protein you feel you are missing, then peanut butter is going to be your friend.
When it comes to the savoury flavor, mushrooms or parmesan cheese can help to quell those particular cravings. If you relapse and eat meat ahead of schedule it’s not the end of the world. You can just start again, no one is judging you.
Keep trying new things
If you find yourself struggling to keep meat out of your diet, you may find that it’s not the meat you are craving, but the flavours that came with it. You may be missing the sauces of particular dishes, so now’s your opportunity to learn how to make the flavours in a meat-free way. It’s important to keep trying new things in a meat-free diet as the options are often changing.
Protein substitutes are important, so finding one that works for you is going to be key to cutting back on meat.
Cutting back on meat isn’t something that everyone can do overnight. These tips can help you to make the transition without pushing yourself to breaking point. Instead, you can get on board with your meat-free meals before ditching meat, making life much less of a shock if you cut it out completely.