Kale salad?! Again?! You don’t have to eat three meals of raw kale a day to enjoy a delicious, eco-friendly diet. Eating food that’s good for Mother Earth can be quite a tasty endeavor. The good news: You don’t need all night to whip up a dinner dish that pleases the planet.
When cooking at home, your meals are likely more earth-friendly than if eating out. A meal at home can include foods and ingredients that are organic and/or locally sourced. Further, you can prepare meals of raw foods or those that require less oven or stove time, consuming less energy in the cooking process. Lastly, preparing food at home doesn’t involve an extra trip in the car and the burning of more fossil fuels. Keep things really green with these eco-friendly dinner ideas that are sure to please:
Make a Raw Salad Using Seasonal Ingredients: Check out your local farmers’ market or green grocer for veggies and fruits that are in season and locally sourced. Pick out your favorites – including some bold, vibrant colors and tastes – and mix them up with a homemade vinaigrette. Take wedges of red and yellow tomatoes, pieces of green, orange and yellow peppers, slices of carrot and cucumber (and anything else in season that strikes your fancy) and mix them in a bowl with diced tomatoes, red onion, chickpeas and herbs. Separately, whisk olive oil, vinegar, salt, pepper, lemon juice and mustard and pour over the vegetables and refrigerate before serving. Delicious and vitamin-packed eats!
Steam a Whole Fish: The United Nations notes that livestock are responsible for a shocking 14.5 percent of manmade greenhouse gas emissions. This means eating less meat is green in more ways than one. Download an app like Seafood Watch to find out which fish are plentiful and sustainably caught throughout the year. Find a local fish market or a trusted source for seafood, purchase a whole fish and steam it Chinese style. First, rinse and pat it dry and season it with salt and pepper. Then stuff it with scallions, ginger and cilantro. Put the fish on a shallow plate and place it in a large pot or wok with 2” of water. Cover and steam. Check it at 12 minutes and cook until it’s flaky. Enjoy!
Reuse Leftovers to Make Chicken Salad: Have you ever taken last night’s leftovers, mixed them up with eggs and called it an omelet? You can do the same for dinner. Get creative with leftover food. Make that organic, cage-free rotisserie chicken you ate for lunch into a delightful salad. Just add craisins, celery and onion. Then stir in Greek yogurt, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Use a crisp butter lettuce leaf to scoop into the chilled deliciousness.
Don’t forget to compost and recycle anything that’s left over! Enjoy your easy dinner and sleep well knowing you made a meal that was good for you, your family and the planet.
Mark your calendar to check in with us each week for the latest Eco-Centric blog post, which is always chock-full of eco-friendly tips and information. We’re also sharing daily, green lifestyle tips and tricks on our Facebook and Twitter pages. Follow us!