Vegan Dinner from the Dollar Tree
Eating a vegan meal doesn't always have to expensive. You can have good food at low prices. Learning to cook for yourself is half the battle when it comes to your vegan journey. All of your meals do not have to consist of mock meats and plant-based cheeses. They can be simples sauces, veggies, fruits, grains, and seeds that are filling and cruelty free.
The Dollar Tree closest to me has a frozen foods section. On the subject of fresh versus frozen fruits and vegetables I found an amazing blog, Frozen Vegetables to Eat or not to Eat, that has done most of the research for us. To sum it up, frozen vegetables are good for us and could possibly contain more of the vegetable's nutrients because they are flash-frozen and that stops them from aging and losing what they had when they were picked.
I decided to make this quick and easy stir-fry.
The main ingredients came from the dollar store but I had garlic, onion, and ginger at home. I always have garlic, onion, and ginger on standby. I'll do another post about vegan essentials to have on hand for quick and easy cooking. The sesame seeds were just to make a pretty picture and are not required.
Here's a quick video on the process:
1 bag of stir fry blend
1 bag of asparagus (chopped while it's still frozen)
1 jar of mushrooms (drained)
1/2 medium onion (chopped)
3 cloves of garlic (minced)
1 tablespoon ground fresh ginger
Warm the sesame oil in large pan or wok over medium heat. Sauté the onion until it softens a bit but isn't translucent. Add the garlic and ginger and sauté for about a minute. Pour in the stir fry blend and asparagus. Allow this to cook for about 5 minutes. Everything should start to thaw and there will be liquid in the pan. This is ok. The cornstarch in the stir-fry sauce will help to thicken everything up and make it more saucy and not soupy. Add the mushrooms and cook together for 3-4 minutes. Add the stir fry sauce (recipe below). Mix everything up and cover for another 3-4 minutes. The sauce will thicken and the vegetables should cooked but not squishy. You want to monitor everything to make sure it doesn't get overcooked. When sauce is thick you're ready to go. Serve over rice, noodles, or by itself. This serves 2-4 people depending on how hungry you find yourself. Enjoy!
1/3 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons maple syrup (you can sub with molasses, corn syrup, or agave nectar)
2 teaspoons sesame oil (you can sub with peanut oil)
2 tablespoons ground fresh ginger
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon sriracha (if you want it a little kick to it, add more or omit it)
Add all the ingredients to the measuring cup with the soy sauce and whisk together.
You can easily make this same recipe with any ingredients from any store. This is just to show you that it's possible to make something delicious without breaking the bank.
What other meals would you like to see? Comment below!