Pressure Cooking Vegan Meals

pressure cook rice

pressure cook rice

If you are a vegetarian or vegan, I probably don’t have to tell you that along with a healthy diet, it also comes with a host of challenges. In fact, some of the challenges might be preventing some people from taking the complete leap into the world of new dietary needs.

One of those challenges is going out to eat, attending a dinner party, or preparing meals for a “mixed family”. Remember, just because you have decided to make the changes, doesn’t mean that everyone else has…even in your own home. But, this can be handled just as you would if you were on a diet to lose weight…plan, prepare…and even pretend if you have to, right?

However, that challenge is one that occurs occasionally and isn’t a big deal for most people. The biggest challenge that I see is the length of time that it takes to create many of the tasty meals associated with a vegan or vegetarian diet.

I am going to address solutions for that in a minute. But first, let’s discuss a few basics of being a vegetarian or vegan.

Vegetarian” vs. “Vegan” Diets

It’s a common mistake to think that vegans and vegetarians are the same thing. They might be similar…but, there are a few differences. 

Vegetarian is a common term used for a person who will not consume any meat, fish, seafood, or poultry, and it’s only one (out of many) known vegetarian categories. And, while eliminating everything I just mentioned might sound very limiting, it’s far less restrictive than being a vegan.

If you are a vegan, you have chosen the strictest form of vegetarianism. Vegans will not consume any by-products of animals at all. In addition to omitting meat, a true vegan will also steer clear of dairy, eggs, white sugar, bread, beer, honey…and more.

Both vegetarians and vegans often incorporate foods that tend to take a while to cook. But, it really doesn’t have to be an issue at all…

Free up Valuable Time with Pressure Cookers

Eating a healthy vegetarian or vegan diet typically involves foods that take a while to cook, such as whole grains, legumes, peas, and lentils. Often these need to either cook for quite a while, or soak…if not both. And, while I enjoy cooking, I don’t want to be married to it. How about you?

A great option for speeding up the cooking process is by using a pressure cooker. It’s not just for meats, really. It will speed up cooking time for vegetarians as well, freeing up some valuable time to spend doing whatever else you need…or want to do.

Take a look at the average cooking time that a good pressure cooker can do for the vegetarian diet:

  • Kidney, pinto, or black beans: approximately 6 minutes
  • Garbanzo beans: could cook in about 15 minutes
  • Brown rice: cooked much quicker than on stovetop, in about 22 minutes
  • Quinoa: real quick at 5 minutes
  • Artichokes: typically under 15 minutes
  • Root vegetables: approximately 3 minutes

Pressure cookers do a great job with vegetables. Even though stovetop isn’t terribly long to begin with, the tight seal and steaming a pressure cooker brings to veggies will bring out the most flavor, best texture, and beautiful color. Imagine the wonderful…and quick vegetable soup you can make!

Tips for Cooking with a Pressure Cooker

The most important tip I can give you when cooking with a pressure cooker, is read the owner’s manual fully before you even plug it in. There is important information for each step of using it, and reading it thoroughly increases your chances of being happy with your cooker, right from the start.

The manual might also have some recommended recipes for you to experiment with, even if they are not vegetarian. You can adapt many recipes by converting them into vegetarian or vegan dishes. So, not only can you cook your veggies in it, but wonderful soups, chili, and stews…in half the time you would be able to complete it on the stove.

And finally, don’t skip out on the olive oil when a recipe calls for it in a pressure cooker. It’s a necessary ingredient to prevent foaming during the cooking process. Also, olive oil has great flavor and is one of the healthiest oils to cook with.

 

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