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7 Simple Soy Recipes | Meatless Monday
Although soybeans are hotly debated legumes, they’re a good source of protein for anyone avoiding meat on Mondays—or every day of the week.
And since April is National Soy Foods Month, we wanted to share with you some of our favorite recipes that incorporate the plant-based protein. Whether your ingredient of choice is miso, tempeh or tofu, it’s simple to include soy at breakfast, lunch, dinner, and even dessert. Pick organic soy products when possible to avoid consuming soybeans that have been genetically modified.
Banana, Berry, and Tofu Smoothie Start your day with a nutrient-packed blend that’s easy on your belly.
Tofu Spinach Wrap This easy-to-assemble lunch is spicy and satisfying.
Edamame Hummus When snack time rolls around, wake up your taste buds by subbing soybeans for chickpeas.
Baked Eggplant with Miso The Japanese eggplant in this vegetarian recipe tastes sweeter than the traditional eggplant used in Italian cooking. Plus, it has fewer seeds.
Lemony Shells with Edamame With only five ingredients, this citrusy supper is perfect for spring.
Fast Tempeh Stir-Fry Add some flair to your next Asian-inspired meal by trying tempeh in place of tofu.
Chocolate Tofu Cheesecake Pack in protein even when you’re eating dessert. The lighter ingredients in this recipe make it slightly less sinful.
photo: iStockphoto/Thinkstock

7 Simple Soy Recipes | Meatless Monday

Although soybeans are hotly debated legumes, they’re a good source of protein for anyone avoiding meat on Mondays—or every day of the week.

And since April is National Soy Foods Month, we wanted to share with you some of our favorite recipes that incorporate the plant-based protein. Whether your ingredient of choice is miso, tempeh or tofu, it’s simple to include soy at breakfast, lunch, dinner, and even dessert. Pick organic soy products when possible to avoid consuming soybeans that have been genetically modified.

Banana, Berry, and Tofu Smoothie Start your day with a nutrient-packed blend that’s easy on your belly.

Tofu Spinach Wrap This easy-to-assemble lunch is spicy and satisfying.

Edamame Hummus When snack time rolls around, wake up your taste buds by subbing soybeans for chickpeas.

Baked Eggplant with Miso The Japanese eggplant in this vegetarian recipe tastes sweeter than the traditional eggplant used in Italian cooking. Plus, it has fewer seeds.

Lemony Shells with Edamame With only five ingredients, this citrusy supper is perfect for spring.

Fast Tempeh Stir-Fry Add some flair to your next Asian-inspired meal by trying tempeh in place of tofu.

Chocolate Tofu Cheesecake Pack in protein even when you’re eating dessert. The lighter ingredients in this recipe make it slightly less sinful.

photo: iStockphoto/Thinkstock

Meatless Monday: 5 Delicious Faux Meat Recipes
By Hollis Templeton
I usually play it pretty safe when it comes to fake meat. I’ll  occasionally use Boca Meatless Crumbles in recipes that call for ground  beef, but because I’ve never cared much for the taste of meat—real or  fake—I’m more apt to stick to tofu or straight-up veggie or bean dishes.  But a recent dining experience made me think that I might be missing  something.
On Valentine’s Day I ate at Gobo, a vegetarian restaurant in New York  City that serves up Asian-inspired dishes like smoked Beijing-style  seitan with Chinese broccoli, and nori-wrapped tofu in Thai red curry  sauce. The seitan had such an authentic meat flavor that it was  scary—and it happened to be scary delicious.
Since then, I’ve been a little less timid about experimenting with mock meat products, like seitan, vegan sausage, tempeh, and so on.
This week, be a little bolder. Skip the veggie-burger-on-bun  routine and try your favorite meat substitutes in one of these easy  vegetarian recipes.
Easy Breezy Vegetarian Chili (pictured) Loaded with fiber and protein, this back-to-basics recipe is made in the slow cooker, so it’s perfect for lazy winter days.
Mock Peking Duck Serve seitan just like you would duck in this Chinese dish—wrap it in flatbread along with shredded scallions and hoisin sauce.
Southwest Pita Melt A super simple lunch or dinner idea starts with a black bean and chipotle veggie burger and a few healthy toppings.
Tempeh Burgers If you’re tired of veggie, black bean, lentil, and Portobello burgers, try tempeh!
Indonesian-Style Stir-Fried Pasta An exotic-tasting dish that worth a little extra effort in the kitchen.

Meatless Monday: 5 Delicious Faux Meat Recipes

By Hollis Templeton

I usually play it pretty safe when it comes to fake meat. I’ll occasionally use Boca Meatless Crumbles in recipes that call for ground beef, but because I’ve never cared much for the taste of meat—real or fake—I’m more apt to stick to tofu or straight-up veggie or bean dishes. But a recent dining experience made me think that I might be missing something.

On Valentine’s Day I ate at Gobo, a vegetarian restaurant in New York City that serves up Asian-inspired dishes like smoked Beijing-style seitan with Chinese broccoli, and nori-wrapped tofu in Thai red curry sauce. The seitan had such an authentic meat flavor that it was scary—and it happened to be scary delicious.

Since then, I’ve been a little less timid about experimenting with mock meat products, like seitan, vegan sausage, tempeh, and so on.

This week, be a little bolder. Skip the veggie-burger-on-bun routine and try your favorite meat substitutes in one of these easy vegetarian recipes.

Easy Breezy Vegetarian Chili (pictured) Loaded with fiber and protein, this back-to-basics recipe is made in the slow cooker, so it’s perfect for lazy winter days.

Mock Peking Duck Serve seitan just like you would duck in this Chinese dish—wrap it in flatbread along with shredded scallions and hoisin sauce.

Southwest Pita Melt A super simple lunch or dinner idea starts with a black bean and chipotle veggie burger and a few healthy toppings.

Tempeh Burgers If you’re tired of veggie, black bean, lentil, and Portobello burgers, try tempeh!

Indonesian-Style Stir-Fried Pasta An exotic-tasting dish that worth a little extra effort in the kitchen.

Meatless Monday: Heart-Healthy Recipes
February is the perfect time to show your ticker some extra TLC. It’s Heart Month, the American Heart Association’s big push to raise awareness about the number one killer of women—heart disease.
While there are countless ways to keep your blood pressure and cholesterol levels in check, like hitting the gym regularly, limiting alcohol consumption, and skipping the smokes, you might already be doing your heart a huge favor if you cut out meat one day a week. Researchers at Harvard University found that replacing saturated fats (those found in meat and full-fat dairy) with polyunsaturated fats (found in nuts, seeds, and olive oil), improves heart health (and makes weight loss easier, an added bonus we like).
This month, try taking your Monday routine one step further by donning a scarlet accessory. The Monday Campaigns, the parent organization behind Meatless Monday, is urging Americans to wear something red every Monday as a way to get women talking about their blood pressure, cholesterol, and other heart disease indicators (you’re never too young to be in the know!). Whether it’s via a face-to-face conversation, text message, or tweet, share the love. Wear red, tell your friends about it, and pass along these five heart-healthy recipes to the women you care about most.
Whole Wheat Pasta with Walnuts, Spinach, and Mozzarella (pictured) A mix of olive oil, walnuts, whole wheat spaghetti, spinach, and low-fat cheese, this dish is chock-full of heart-healthy monounsaturated fat, omega-3s, whole grains, and antioxidants.
Fruit and Spice Cut Oatmeal Researchers at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center found that eating cereal, especially whole grain varieties, 7 days a week reduces high blood pressure risk by 25%. Give this belly-warming bowl a try.
Vegetable Paella This fiber-packed dish (there’s even beans in there) is the perfect way to get more produce onto your plate.
Herb Roasted Potato Medley All potatoes are good sources of vitamin C and fiber, but purple potatoes offer a dose of anthocyanins, which may help protect against heart disease and diabetes.
Easy Tropical Fruit Salad Berries are also brimming with anthocyanins, and according to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, eating them regularly can help reduce your risk for high blood pressure.
photo: Mitch Mandel

Meatless Monday: Heart-Healthy Recipes

February is the perfect time to show your ticker some extra TLC. It’s Heart Month, the American Heart Association’s big push to raise awareness about the number one killer of women—heart disease.

While there are countless ways to keep your blood pressure and cholesterol levels in check, like hitting the gym regularly, limiting alcohol consumption, and skipping the smokes, you might already be doing your heart a huge favor if you cut out meat one day a week. Researchers at Harvard University found that replacing saturated fats (those found in meat and full-fat dairy) with polyunsaturated fats (found in nuts, seeds, and olive oil), improves heart health (and makes weight loss easier, an added bonus we like).

This month, try taking your Monday routine one step further by donning a scarlet accessory. The Monday Campaigns, the parent organization behind Meatless Monday, is urging Americans to wear something red every Monday as a way to get women talking about their blood pressure, cholesterol, and other heart disease indicators (you’re never too young to be in the know!). Whether it’s via a face-to-face conversation, text message, or tweet, share the love. Wear red, tell your friends about it, and pass along these five heart-healthy recipes to the women you care about most.

Whole Wheat Pasta with Walnuts, Spinach, and Mozzarella (pictured) A mix of olive oil, walnuts, whole wheat spaghetti, spinach, and low-fat cheese, this dish is chock-full of heart-healthy monounsaturated fat, omega-3s, whole grains, and antioxidants.

Fruit and Spice Cut Oatmeal Researchers at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center found that eating cereal, especially whole grain varieties, 7 days a week reduces high blood pressure risk by 25%. Give this belly-warming bowl a try.

Vegetable Paella This fiber-packed dish (there’s even beans in there) is the perfect way to get more produce onto your plate.

Herb Roasted Potato Medley All potatoes are good sources of vitamin C and fiber, but purple potatoes offer a dose of anthocyanins, which may help protect against heart disease and diabetes.

Easy Tropical Fruit Salad Berries are also brimming with anthocyanins, and according to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, eating them regularly can help reduce your risk for high blood pressure.

photo: Mitch Mandel

Meatless Monday: Super Bowl Party Foods
Beat out only by Thanksgiving, Super Bowl Sunday is the second  biggest eating day in America. Party favorites, like chips, pretzels,  pizza, and beer, help the average American snack through an extra 1,200  calories and 50 grams of fat on top of their regular meals.
It’s also a big day for meat consumption, with dishes like chili,  chicken wings, and bacon-wrapped morsels making appearances on buffet  tables across the country. In fact, the National Chicken Council  estimates that Americans will gnaw their way through 1.25 billion  wings—that’s 90 billion calories worth—during this year’s game.
If you’re looking for a way to indulge in your favorite party foods  (and keep hungry guests satisfied) without feeling like a linebacker by  the forth quarter, try these healthy, meat-free twists on classic game  day fare. And if you’ve got a favorite vegetarian party food recipe,  tell us about it in the comments section below!
Chunky Guacamole with Jicama Sticks Even though avocados are packed with healthy monounsaturated fat, the  calories in guacamole add up fast. In this version of the popular dip,  crunchy fresh vegetables add texture and help you keep calories in  check.
Zucchini Chips If you like kale chips, give this crispy, low-carb snack a whirl.
Whole Wheat Pizza Margherita If you love pizza, but not the dripping-with-oil delivery type, try  this DIY pie that has only five ingredients. Two slices won’t even cost  you 400 calories.
Vegetarian Chili Bursting with protein and fiber, this chili will keep you satisfied—and  less tempted to dip back into the salty snacks all night.
Whoopie Pies Keep these tasty chocolate-and-marshmallow treats on the tiny side and  you’ll end up with a 100-calorie dessert to pass at your game day  potluck.

Meatless Monday: Super Bowl Party Foods

Beat out only by Thanksgiving, Super Bowl Sunday is the second biggest eating day in America. Party favorites, like chips, pretzels, pizza, and beer, help the average American snack through an extra 1,200 calories and 50 grams of fat on top of their regular meals.

It’s also a big day for meat consumption, with dishes like chili, chicken wings, and bacon-wrapped morsels making appearances on buffet tables across the country. In fact, the National Chicken Council estimates that Americans will gnaw their way through 1.25 billion wings—that’s 90 billion calories worth—during this year’s game.

If you’re looking for a way to indulge in your favorite party foods (and keep hungry guests satisfied) without feeling like a linebacker by the forth quarter, try these healthy, meat-free twists on classic game day fare. And if you’ve got a favorite vegetarian party food recipe, tell us about it in the comments section below!

Chunky Guacamole with Jicama Sticks Even though avocados are packed with healthy monounsaturated fat, the calories in guacamole add up fast. In this version of the popular dip, crunchy fresh vegetables add texture and help you keep calories in check.

Zucchini Chips If you like kale chips, give this crispy, low-carb snack a whirl.

Whole Wheat Pizza Margherita If you love pizza, but not the dripping-with-oil delivery type, try this DIY pie that has only five ingredients. Two slices won’t even cost you 400 calories.

Vegetarian Chili Bursting with protein and fiber, this chili will keep you satisfied—and less tempted to dip back into the salty snacks all night.

Whoopie Pies Keep these tasty chocolate-and-marshmallow treats on the tiny side and you’ll end up with a 100-calorie dessert to pass at your game day potluck.

Meatless Monday: Satisfying Post-Workout Meal Ideas
By Hollis Templeton
While I love the energy and mood boost I get from amping up my  exercise routine, an unfortunate side effect of sticking to those New  Year’s resolutions is the increased hunger that comes with longer,  harder workouts. What’s really not fair: Researchers at the University  of Ottawa in Canada found that while intense exercise suppresses men’s  appetites, vigorous workouts make women hungrier. Humph.
While it’s tempting to satisfy a grumbling stomach with a big  breakfast or dinner post-workout (you earned it, right?), you don’t want  to erase your hard work with a calorie-packed meal that’s low on  nutrients. Instead, pick a breakfast or dinner that includes a mix of  carbohydrates (to replenish energy stores), protein (to aid muscle  recovery and repair), and healthy fat (to help you stay full). Here, six  meat-free meal options to try on your workout days this week.
 Magic Lasagna (pictured) Why magic? It’s a breeze to prepare thanks to no-boil noodles. Plus it’s loaded with veggies.
Toasted Egg and Cheese Sandwich At last, a breakfast sandwich sans bacon. This one’s got garlic and  herb cheese, egg whites, and avocado all for less than 400 calories.
High Protein Blueberry Yogurt Smoothie A fruity and filling blend you can sip on your way to class or work.
Pumped Up Banana-Pecan Oatmeal Potassium-rich bananas and muscle-building whey protein give you the oomph you need to recover after your last set. For Evening Exercisers
Lentil-Quinoa Burgers with Sautéed Mushrooms With the surprisingly meaty flavors in these vegetarian burgers, you definitely won’t miss the meat!
Indian Vegetables with Baked Tempeh When you’re craving something a little exotic, hold back from grabbing  take-out. Try Indian at home with this easy protein-packed dish that has  less than 325 calories per serving.
photo: Ann Stratton

Meatless Monday: Satisfying Post-Workout Meal Ideas

By Hollis Templeton

While I love the energy and mood boost I get from amping up my exercise routine, an unfortunate side effect of sticking to those New Year’s resolutions is the increased hunger that comes with longer, harder workouts. What’s really not fair: Researchers at the University of Ottawa in Canada found that while intense exercise suppresses men’s appetites, vigorous workouts make women hungrier. Humph.

While it’s tempting to satisfy a grumbling stomach with a big breakfast or dinner post-workout (you earned it, right?), you don’t want to erase your hard work with a calorie-packed meal that’s low on nutrients. Instead, pick a breakfast or dinner that includes a mix of carbohydrates (to replenish energy stores), protein (to aid muscle recovery and repair), and healthy fat (to help you stay full). Here, six meat-free meal options to try on your workout days this week.

 Magic Lasagna (pictured) Why magic? It’s a breeze to prepare thanks to no-boil noodles. Plus it’s loaded with veggies.

Toasted Egg and Cheese Sandwich At last, a breakfast sandwich sans bacon. This one’s got garlic and herb cheese, egg whites, and avocado all for less than 400 calories.

High Protein Blueberry Yogurt Smoothie A fruity and filling blend you can sip on your way to class or work.

Pumped Up Banana-Pecan Oatmeal Potassium-rich bananas and muscle-building whey protein give you the oomph you need to recover after your last set.
For Evening Exercisers

Lentil-Quinoa Burgers with Sautéed Mushrooms With the surprisingly meaty flavors in these vegetarian burgers, you definitely won’t miss the meat!

Indian Vegetables with Baked Tempeh When you’re craving something a little exotic, hold back from grabbing take-out. Try Indian at home with this easy protein-packed dish that has less than 325 calories per serving.

photo: Ann Stratton

Meatless Monday: Vegetarian Foods for Weight Loss
By Hollis Templeton
I’m going to  venture a guess that your resolution—or one of your resolutions—involves  dropping a few pounds. If you’re like me, part of that resolution  involves expanding your healthy recipe repertoire—stir fry gets old,  fast—and eating more plant-based foods.
Conveniently, a vegetarian diet and successful weight loss go  hand-in-hand. A roundup of 87 studies published in Nutrition Reviews  shows that vegetarians and vegans tend to weigh 3 to 20% less than  meat-eaters, and they experience lower rates of cardiovascular disease,  diabetes, and hypertension. The same study found that eating a  vegetarian or vegan diet can help you lose 1 pound per week without  serious exercise or calorie-counting. While we don’t recommend ditching  the gym, these five meat-free recipes will help you cut calories and  stay satisfied as you work toward your 2012 weight loss goal.
Green Tea and Blueberry Smoothie Not only does this liquid breakfast taste delicious, it’s also packed  with fat-fighting ingredients. Gulping two to four cups of green tea  each day can boost your metabolism and help you torch an extra 50  calories daily—that’s 5 pounds a year! Then there’s low-fat yogurt,  which contains a hearty helping of calcium, which may promote weight  loss. Finally, ground flaxseed contains omega-3 fatty acids, which may  help keep you feeling fuller, longer.
Spinach Omelet (Above) Research shows that egg eaters lose more weight than those who enjoy  all-carb breakfast foods, like bagels. Nutrient-packed spinach delivers  plenty of volume for very few calories—you’d have to eat 15 cups to top  100 calories.
Bean Salad Beans are one of the best sources of low-calorie fiber you can find,  and this salad has six different varieties of ‘em! While it looks pretty  on a picnic table, we have no problem enjoying this super-filing side  year-round.
Tomato Soup This 80-calorie cup is waistline-friendly because it’s packed with  lycopene-rich cooked tomatoes, which studies show can help blast belly  fat.
Grilled Tofu You  wouldn’t eat a chicken breast sans seasoning, so don’t expect your tofu  to be tasty without giving it a little TLC. Enjoy this filling entree  with a side of wild rice and steamed edamame for a meal that sets you  back only 400 calories.
photo: Mitch Mandel

Meatless Monday: Vegetarian Foods for Weight Loss

By Hollis Templeton

I’m going to venture a guess that your resolution—or one of your resolutions—involves dropping a few pounds. If you’re like me, part of that resolution involves expanding your healthy recipe repertoire—stir fry gets old, fast—and eating more plant-based foods.

Conveniently, a vegetarian diet and successful weight loss go hand-in-hand. A roundup of 87 studies published in Nutrition Reviews shows that vegetarians and vegans tend to weigh 3 to 20% less than meat-eaters, and they experience lower rates of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and hypertension. The same study found that eating a vegetarian or vegan diet can help you lose 1 pound per week without serious exercise or calorie-counting. While we don’t recommend ditching the gym, these five meat-free recipes will help you cut calories and stay satisfied as you work toward your 2012 weight loss goal.

Green Tea and Blueberry Smoothie Not only does this liquid breakfast taste delicious, it’s also packed with fat-fighting ingredients. Gulping two to four cups of green tea each day can boost your metabolism and help you torch an extra 50 calories daily—that’s 5 pounds a year! Then there’s low-fat yogurt, which contains a hearty helping of calcium, which may promote weight loss. Finally, ground flaxseed contains omega-3 fatty acids, which may help keep you feeling fuller, longer.

Spinach Omelet (Above) Research shows that egg eaters lose more weight than those who enjoy all-carb breakfast foods, like bagels. Nutrient-packed spinach delivers plenty of volume for very few calories—you’d have to eat 15 cups to top 100 calories.

Bean Salad Beans are one of the best sources of low-calorie fiber you can find, and this salad has six different varieties of ‘em! While it looks pretty on a picnic table, we have no problem enjoying this super-filing side year-round.

Tomato Soup This 80-calorie cup is waistline-friendly because it’s packed with lycopene-rich cooked tomatoes, which studies show can help blast belly fat.

Grilled Tofu You wouldn’t eat a chicken breast sans seasoning, so don’t expect your tofu to be tasty without giving it a little TLC. Enjoy this filling entree with a side of wild rice and steamed edamame for a meal that sets you back only 400 calories.

photo: Mitch Mandel

Post-Holiday Cleanse Recipes (Meatless Monday)

By Hollis Templeton

If Christmas and Hanukkah festivities have sent you on a mini-vacation from virtuous eating and shifted your digestive system into overdrive, don’t wait ‘til January 1 to get back on track.

Get a head start on healthy resolutions (and give that poor stomach a well-deserved break) by swapping sweets and indulgent party foods for clean and simple meals that are low in saturated fat, sugar, and sodium and free of caffeine, alcohol, food additives, and meat products.

Try these vegetarian meal and snack ideas to look and feel better by New Year’s Day!

Scrambled Egg Whites with Fresh Herbs Sure, you’ll cut calories when you’re eating cleansing foods, but that’s not to say you’ll feel hungry. This filling breakfast allows you eggs, toast, salsa, and a warming cup of green tea. Alternatively, enjoy a bowl of oatmeal topped with berries or nuts.

Light Smoothie Milk, berries, peanut butter, a dash of cocoa powder—this doesn’t taste like a diet drink to us!

Steamed Greens and Tofu A delicious go-to detox dinner or lunch idea: Add 4 ounces of tofu and two teaspoons of olive oil to steamed or raw greens of your choice. From there, dress up your oil with a flavorful vinegar and some fresh herbs. Try naturally enhancing the flavor of your greens by picking peppery arugula or watercress or by tossing fresh cilantro, basil, or flat-leaf parsley into the mix.

Watermelon, Cucumber, and Mint Juice Use a juicer or a blender to mix up a fruit and veggie concoction that’s specifically designed to satisfy your taste buds. Or try this super-fruity blend of cherries, grapes, and carrots. For something less sweet, go with blend apples, carrots, lettuce, and ginger.

Green Veggies and Green Tea Take a break from typical snacking fare and enjoy the crunch of a cup of cucumber slices (add a little vinegar and fresh dill to boost flavor) or 10 blanched asparagus spears (dip in nonfat yogurt swirled with Dijon mustard) along with a cup of hot green tea. Drink your tea straight up or infuse with fresh mint and ginger and serve over ice.

Meatless Monday: Holiday Party Foods
By Hollis Templeton
While holidays at my house revolve around tiny traditions, like saving one meaningful  or homemade gift for after dinner and watching National Lampoons  Christmas Vacation until everyone’s asleep, one thing that never stays  the same is the food. My dad, the cook and party planner of the family,  picks cuisines from outside of our own culture and bases holiday meals  around a different one each year. A traditional Jewish breakfast on  Christmas morning, Italian-inspired Christmas Eve appetizers, a French-style holiday dinner—you never really know what’s coming.
Looking for a way to liven up your traditions this year? Keep your  guests on their toes by swapping all-too-expected standards—a bagel  breakfast, Waldorf salad at dinner, cookies for dessert—for tasty  meat-free treats. Try the five easy recipes below for festive foods that  will please vegetarians and omnivores alike.
Fruit Crepes with Chocolate Sauce On Christmas morning, skip boring bagels and cream cheese and whip up light and fluffy crepes filled with red and green fruit.
Potato Pancakes Over Baby Greens (pictured) Lighten up your latkes by opting for egg whites and serving the Hanukkah favorite with a small salad.
 Spinach Cranberry Salad with Toasted Walnuts and Berry Vinaigrette This red and green, savory and sweet salad will add color and crunch to any holiday table.
Goat Cheese Skewers Simply stack cheese, basil, and tomatoes and you’ve got a party snack in minutes.
Ginger-Macadamia Nut Cheesecake with Praline Topping If your dessert motto is “go big or go home,” impress guests with this anything-but-ordinary cheesecake.

Photo: Elizabeth Watt/Thinkstock

Meatless Monday: Holiday Party Foods

By Hollis Templeton

While holidays at my house revolve around tiny traditions, like saving one meaningful or homemade gift for after dinner and watching National Lampoons Christmas Vacation until everyone’s asleep, one thing that never stays the same is the food. My dad, the cook and party planner of the family, picks cuisines from outside of our own culture and bases holiday meals around a different one each year. A traditional Jewish breakfast on Christmas morning, Italian-inspired Christmas Eve appetizers, a French-style holiday dinner—you never really know what’s coming.

Looking for a way to liven up your traditions this year? Keep your guests on their toes by swapping all-too-expected standards—a bagel breakfast, Waldorf salad at dinner, cookies for dessert—for tasty meat-free treats. Try the five easy recipes below for festive foods that will please vegetarians and omnivores alike.

Fruit Crepes with Chocolate Sauce On Christmas morning, skip boring bagels and cream cheese and whip up light and fluffy crepes filled with red and green fruit.

Potato Pancakes Over Baby Greens (pictured) Lighten up your latkes by opting for egg whites and serving the Hanukkah favorite with a small salad.

 Spinach Cranberry Salad with Toasted Walnuts and Berry Vinaigrette This red and green, savory and sweet salad will add color and crunch to any holiday table.

Goat Cheese Skewers Simply stack cheese, basil, and tomatoes and you’ve got a party snack in minutes.

Ginger-Macadamia Nut Cheesecake with Praline Topping If your dessert motto is “go big or go home,” impress guests with this anything-but-ordinary cheesecake.

Photo: Elizabeth Watt/Thinkstock