Who needs meat when you are Lebanese and/or living in Lebanon?
Even though Lebanese people love to add meat to everything (literally everything, even Labneh, and eggs), some of our tastiest food are meatless or have their version of vegetarian recipes.
This way, we’re not only saving a lot of money now that meat, chicken, and fish are a luxury, but we are also doing animals a huge favor. After all, we don’t need meat to get our intake of protein.
Certain plant foods contain significant protein and are nutrients-rich like lentils, chickpeas, beans, spinach, potatoes, etc.
In fact, many vegetarian or meatless dishes in Lebanese cuisine are not only delicious but super nutritious:
Duh! Falafel: one of the cheapest, most delicious, and most loved food in Lebanon… Nay, around the world. We can have them all day, everyday, economic crisis or not.
#2 Mjaddarah & Mdadra
This is the one meal you hated as a child but now love as an adult. It’s healthy and delicious and meatless, so expect a lot of it during these tough times.
You will have to make do without the pine kernels for time being… but it’s okay because these are just for topping, and Fatteh is amazingly delicious, nutritious, and fulfilling.
#4 Meatless Kibbeh
From Kibbet El-Raheb to Kibbet El-Batata and Kibbet Laqteen (Pumpkin Kebbeh), their recipes are meatless while being nutritious, flavorful, and fulfilling.
#5 Loubieh/Fasoulia B Zet
Basically, you can make a meatless version of every other Lebanese food or Tabkha. That’s what the Christian communities in Lebanon do anyway during Lent. Besides, these dishes of plant food are very popular.
#6 Tabblouleh/ Fattoush with fried Cauliflower on the side
Well when it comes to salads, Lebanon is far ahead. A classic lunch consisting of Tabbouleh and fried cauliflower and eggplant sided with Tahini dressing might be the highlight of your day for many days to come.
#7 Burghul Bil-Banadoura
Well, of course, Burghul makes it on this list. Easy to make, Cracked Wheat cooked with tomato requires very few ingredients.
A big plus is that I’ve never really met anyone in my entire life who hates it. So go ahead, let this be your next meal.
#8 Eggplant meals
Welcoming back the eggplant dishes on our table! Baba Ghanouj, Mtabal Batenjen, Vegetarian Maqloubeh (the same recipe, just skip the meat), Mousaqa Batanjen (also called Maghmour), and so on. Don’t hold back!
Deliciously cooked in our various meatless recipes, the eggplant is a great source of vitamins and minerals, and improves the health of bones and heart, among other benefits.
#9 Spinach, meals & pies
A very popular dish in the North of Lebanon in particular, the blackeyed beans with spinach is a superfood bringing together in one delicious lemony meal the healthy benefits (and protein!) of both the spinach and the beans.
Another great substitute for meat pies is the spinach pies. Whenever you crave Lahm B Ajin, go for spinach pies!
#10 Vegetarian Warak Enab & Malfouf
The classics and neverending love of the Lebanese! And both can be made without meat and be as delicious!