Weeknight Cooking

17 Must-Make Meatless Mains for Dinner Tonight

February 14, 2018

Honestly, I abstain from meat for days at a time without even realizing it—partially because I love vegetables and grains, but also because meat-free eating can still be hearty (not to mention inexpensive). But tell me I can’t have meat for, say, a handful of Fridays during Lent, and suddenly I’m a carnivore.

As observers of Lent know full well, the conversion to temporary pescatarian starts today, with Ash Wednesday. And as hard as it might be to avoid juicy chicken or burgers, I remind myself of all those meatless mains I crave outside of Lenten restrictions. I don’t have to eat the soggy fish sticks of my childhood nightmares; I can make ooey-gooey gratin, spicy salads, or filling frittatas. If you, too, are looking for filling meat-free meals, check out these 17 dishes. Don’t worry—the steak can wait.

For temporary pescatarians

For Temporary Vegetarians

Do you observe Lent by abstaining from meat? If so, what’s your go-to meal?

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A New Way to Dinner, co-authored by Food52's founders Amanda Hesser and Merrill Stubbs, is an indispensable playbook for stress-free meal-planning (hint: cook foundational dishes on the weekend and mix and match ‘em through the week).

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  • Gioconda
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    Victoria Sponge
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Katie is a food writer and editor who loves cheesy puns and cheesy cheese.


Gioconda February 18, 2018
I do not find the article's title misleading because it says "meatless mains" not vegan mains. I'll try some!!
Victoria S. February 18, 2018
Criticisms of this article are really justified. Fish recipes have no place here; it would be nice to include more vegan options; and more care should have been taken so that recipes containing non-vegetarian condiments weren't included. Sorry, but it seems like a rather sloppy cut & paste job.
Dana February 18, 2018
I completely agree with R. The title is very misleading given the content.
R February 16, 2018
I don't really consider fish to be "meat-less" and was saddened at the fact that there was only one vegetarian option that could be considered vegan without any changes. (Also, fish sauce and anchovy fillet on the "vegetarian" recipes makes them not-vegetarian). All of the meals do look really tasty and would be great for any meat-eaters wanting to try cutting meat out of their diet, if for lent or for good.