There are those who are paleo: avoiding grains, legumes, and advocating grass-fed animal proteins. Then there are those who are vegan: abstaining from all animal-based products but consuming everything else. These two diets seemingly live on opposite sides of the train tracks, like the Montagues and the Capulets. Can the two ever live in harmony? Absolutely.
The intersection of the paleo diet and a vegan lifestyle is thin but clearly defined. No grains, no legumes, no animal products. That means no bread, no bacon, no traditional granola, no pasta, no butter. So what do you actually eat? Plenty of root veggies, leafy greens, healthy fats, nuts, seeds and fruits. Sound like your ideal foods? Here are 11 excellent paleo vegan recipes to get you started:
Believe it or not, you can still make granola without the oats. Try toasting some nuts, seeds, coconut flakes, and dried fruit in a light bath of coconut oil, maple syrup, and a pinch of salt and follow your favorite recipe. Here is a good one to get you started. Toss it on cashew milk yogurt or smoothie for a quick and filling breakfast.
Image Credit: In Sonnet’s Kitchen
While there is some debate as to whether fermented foods are actually paleo, they are so healthful that it would be silly to nix them. With kimchi atop cauliflower rice, you have a probiotic-rich, high protein, veggie packed dinner that neither vegan nor paleo would sneer at.
This is a great party or picnic dish. Think of it as a paleo and vegan coleslaw. Shaved broccoli merges with other veggie pals in a light, flavor-packed dressing that will make you forget all about mayonnaise.
Being paleo doesn’t mean you can’t have Italian-inspired dishes. Since this dish is vegan, it has the added bonus of being loaded with healthy veggies. Enjoy Lady & the Tramp style on a romantic evening.
Lasagna, too? Yes! Pasta is replaced by long strips of zucchini and the cheese is cashew based, making this the perfect meld of paleo and vegan. If you haven’t tried cashew cheese before, it’s life changing. It makes dairy-free living a lot easier.
Most vegetables can be made into noodles—sweet potatoes, zucchini, turnip, beets, squash, et cetera—if you invest a few bucks in a spiralizer. This recipe tops veggie noodles with cashew cream and spinach for an alfredo-type dish, but you could also opt for pesto or traditional tomato sauce if you’re in a pinch.
Since one doesn’t consume grains on the paleo diet, you can use lettuce or cabbage leaves in place of a traditional tortilla. The harissa-spiced mushrooms pack a nourishing punch that makes ground beef spiced with taco seasoning seem bland. And let’s not forget about guacamole, the great uniter of diets! Always more guacamole, please.
Finally, a veggie burger that isn’t legume-based! This vegan burger uses plantains as its base, which is high in prebiotic resistant starch. Basil tahini sauce keeps everything moist, flavorful, and tasty. You can eat on its own or even use a plantain-based bun!
Indian dishes can easily be modified to be both paleo and vegan. In keeping with the season, this dish is based on delicious roasted pumpkin, but you could substitute any autumn squash. To keep it paleo, serve over cauliflower rice.
Image Credit: Jessi’s Kitchen
Simply roast acorn squash in the oven and top with crispy, garlic dinosaur kale. This makes a great side dish or can even be a main dish if you’re looking for a light meal.
For all those sweet teeth out there, a little treat. I’m not a huge fan of stevia, so I would personally sub in maple syrup instead to keep it paleo. The convenience of having a paleo and vegan dessert for dinner parties, however, cannot be understated. It works for so many dietary restrictions, and think of how happy they will be to finally enjoy dessert for once!
Do your eating habits tend towards a paleo diet or a vegan one. Share below!
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