Living Vegan – Winter Comfort Meals

With the weather cooling down and winter approaching, now is the great time to update your repertoire of favorite soups and warm winter fare. Winter brings with it a bounty of vegetables and is a time for vegans to celebrate. This time of year gives you endless choices to make beautiful meals that the family will love all winter long. It really becomes a question of choosing the meals that fit your family the best. Here are some great recipe ideas that are easy to make with healthy sustainable ingredients and hearty tastes to satisfy your winter cravings!

Soups

Soups are a great staple for any season, but especially when it’s freezing outside and you want to get warm from the inside out. So head to your favorite farmer’s market and pick up some seasonal broccoli to make this awesome recipe!

Cream of Broccoli Soup (it’s amazingly cheesy!)

Ingredients

4 Cups of roughly chopped broccoli florets
3 1/2 Cups Hemp milk unsweetened and plain
½ cup of your favorite non-dairy creamer
1 ½ cup vegetable stock
¼ cup of arrowroot
6 ounces of vegan cheddar cheese
2 tsp of sea salt
1 tsp of pepper
1 T of olive oil

Preparation

In a large saucepan add the broccoli, salt and pepper and cook until the broccoli is crisp then add the stock and cook around 10 minutes until the broccoli is tender. Remove from heat and stir in a cup of the hemp milk. Let cool then transfer to a blender. Put the blended mixture back into the pan and on medium heat add the rest of the hemp milk and creamer. When the soup begins to simmer then add the arrowroot and vegan cheese. This soup tastes amazing and lasts well for days so you can enjoy it all week long!

Stews

Vegetable stews are a great addition to any winter meal and are a hearty way to fill up the family. My favorite one is a great traditional white bean and kale version that takes no time at all.

White Bean and Kale Stew

Ingredients

1 15oz can of organic Northern or Cannellini beans
1 Bunch Kale (cut around the vein and rip leaves into pieces)
2 Medium carrots
1 Medium yellow onion
1 Cup of vegetable broth
1 tsp of sea salt
2 tsp of Herbs De Provence
Olive oil

Preparation

Sauté the onion and garlic in olive oil until onions are translucent then add the carrots, beans and spices to the pan. Slowly add ½ cup of the vegetable broth. Continue cooking for 5 to 7 minutes. While the mixture is cooking grab another pan and cook down the kale with ½ cup of the veggie broth. Add the cooked down kale to the bean mixture. Continue cooking on low for around 10 minutes or until it has a stew like texture. Super yummy!

Slow Cooker

Your crock pot or slow cooker is a great idea for vegan meals when you don’t have extra time. Just toss in the ingredients then go! Here is my absolute favorite easy baked bean recipe, and the ground cloves make the whole house smell like Thanksgiving. I can’t think of a heartier aroma.

Vegan Easy Baked Beans

Ingredients

6 Cans of organic pre-cooked beans (3 pinto, 3 kidney)
1 Cup of vegetable broth
1/3 Cup of brown sugar
½ Cup of Molasses
½ tsp of ground cloves
1 Onion
3 cloves of garlic
2 T of dried mustard
2 T of sea salt

Preparation

Drain and rinse the cans of beans then add to the slow cooker. Sauté the onions and garlic in a little olive oil until onions are translucent, then add the mixture to the beans. Add the rest of the ingredients then mix well. Put the slow cooker on high for 3 hours then on low for an additional 3 hours, a total of 6 hours cooking time. Add extra broth to the mixture if needed. These beans are a great staple to add to any meal and are a great meal in itself!

Another great idea is to serve warm salads during the winter. Sauté some onions, garlic and beans then pour the mixture over some fresh raw spinach for a tasty warm spinach salad; or try a mushroom and onion sauté topping. I hope you enjoy making these delicious vegan meals during the winter— what a great way to keep your family warm and healthy for the holidays!

About the Author

Sarah Banfield is a vegan mother of three, and has found many good recipes can be found on the Greek Mediterranean diet plan, which are not that far afield from a vegan lifestyle. Check out this list of low acid foods for acid reflux which can also help reduce digestive issues.

*Image: Simon Howden / FreeDigitalPhotos.net.*