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3 Cheap and Natural Meat Substitutes

Whether you're trying to incorporate more vegetables in your diet or cut down your grocery bill, replacing meat a couple nights a week can help you accomplish both goals. Here are three inexpensive meat substitutes that don't include the often-polarizing tofu.

  1. Eggplant: This purple veggie has a solid, meaty texture compared to other vegetables and is a tasty centerpiece for dishes like baked eggplant parmesan or a complement to stir-fry and pasta recipes. Eggplant is nutritious to boot, packing in fiber, antioxidants, B vitamins, and potassium.

To see two more meat substitutes,


  1. Mushrooms: If it's cost you're focused on, opt for button mushrooms to get the most nutritional bang for your buck. Mushrooms are extremely versatile and can be ideal substitutes in burgers (make a portobello burger or veggie burgers with mushrooms as a base), enchiladas, casseroles, and more, as they tend to take on the flavors of whatever else is in the recipe.
  2. Beans: Full of protein and fiber, beans are an extremely inexpensive meat substitute. Use them in chilis, salads, and soups to make any vegetarian meal a bit heartier.


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