My First Attempt at Plant-Based Cooking

Penne with Veggies 'N' Black Beans
Penne with Veggies ‘N’ Black Beans

When we decided to cut meat and dairy out of our diet I had to search through my existing cookbooks to find recipes. This one, Penne with Veggies ‘n’ Black Beans came from Taste of Homes’ Healthy Cooking Annual Recipes (2015). Since we had just become “empty nesters” I turned to the ‘Table for Two’ section and found a photo of a meal that looked appetizing and super simple to make.

Since it was June – all of the ingredients were in season and it did not require any special ingredients that were hard to find (except maybe the Nutritional Yeast – which is used as a substitute for the parmesan cheese).

Recipe for: Penne with Veggies ’n’ Black Beans

Estimated time to prepare: 25 minutes. Makes: 2 servings (double for 4)

Quick tip: use a bag of your favorite pre-cut frozen veggies if you are in a hurry.

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup of uncooked penne pasta (substitute with a bean pasta if gluten free)
  • 1/3 cup of sliced zucchini (about one medium)
  • 1/3 cup of sliced carrot (about 2)
  • 4 medium mushrooms sliced
  • 1/2 small green pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 yellow or red pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 onion thinly sliced
  • 1 small garlic clove, minced (I used minced garlic from a jar)
  • 1/4 teaspoon of each: dried basil, oregano & thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 cup canned black beans, rinsed and drained (15 oz can is ok)
  • 1/4 cup chopped seeded tomato (canned and drained is ok)
  • 2 Tablespoons shredded Parmesan (substitute with Nutritional Yeast)
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh parsley
  1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, sauté all the vegetables, garlic and seasonings in 1+ teaspoon of oil until tender-crisp. Stir in the beans.
  1. Drain pasta; add to vegetable mixture. Add tomato and remaining olive oil; toss gently. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese (or Nutritional Yeast) and parsley.

Nutritional Info. Per serving:

  • 300 calories
  • 7 grams fat (2 g sat. Fat)
  • 4 mg cholesterol
  • 643 mg sodium
  • 47 g carb
  • 8 g fiber
  • Diabetic Exchanges: 2/12 starch, 1 lean meat, 1 vegetable, 1 fat

One thought on “My First Attempt at Plant-Based Cooking

  1. This is from my husband, who has been on the same plant based diet since June 2017:

    My lipid tests all dropped 20-25%, protein and red blood cell counts all were normal, as well as blood sugar and energy level. My weight has dropped 7-10 lbs,, body fat was down 10% and the only thing in my exercise and work routine that changed was the diet over the past 1.5 years. There are many good and flavorable vegan substitutes for the milk products that I have always loved, except for cheese.

    Like

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