If your dad is anything like mine, he’ll scoff at the idea of dinner without meat and laugh at you for caring about the environment (past compulsory recycling and having anallotment at the end of the garden). If this isn’t the case for you – I’m pretty jealous!
Eating plant-based in a family of meat-eaters isn’t easy, and we deserve some recognition for surviving the daily ridicule and rabbit food jokes. Having to cook separate meals is just a small (annoying) part of being plant-based in this environment.
One thing you need to remember is if they’ve grown up eating meat, your whole family will be set in their ways. There’s practically no chance of changing their mind overnight, but you don’t need to. Start small and work your way up by suggesting a veggie night each week (ensuring it isn’t Sunday so they aren’t deprived of their roast dinner…). Making tasty meals together is also a great way to spend the evening!
If you find they enjoy this, you can introduce them to various lunch options which won’t have them missing meat or even dairy (I’m thinking a huge protein packed bowl of Creamy Mac). Breakfast is normally the easiest meal remove meat from though, so if you need to go even slower, that’s the best place to start! It’ll be a long process, but show them how much it matters to you and hopefully they will try to meet you in the middle.
Another way to start introducing your dad, and rest of the family, to a plant-based diet is by using meat and dairy alternatives. If it looks and tastes like meat, you have more of a chance of convincing them to eat it. There’s some amazing veggie burgers, kebabs and sausages available (most of them cheaper than meat) which taste similar and have the same texture. Linda McCartney’s products are usually a safe supermarket option!
And the health benefits of these? As alternatives tend to be soya or pea protein based, they’re low in saturated fat and calories, meaning they can help you lose a little bit of weight or allow you to increase your portion sizes. A win-win situation!
Finally, if the health benefits and taste can’t win your dad over, try watching some documentaries about the benefits of eating plant-based. You may need to pretend it’s a true crime documentary – but hopefully the underhanded method will work!
It’s really eye-opening to see what’s happening in the meat industry at the moment, and when the facts get shown to you – it’s hard to ignore. The most frustrating part is that we don’t need to consuming it (as a population) in the quantity we do.So, even by persuading your dad to eat less meat at breakfastand lunch, it’s still making a difference.
The Plantifull meal pots are an easy plant-based meal, so you could always leave a couple in the fridge as a serious hint. You can buy them from their website or Ocado for the perfect Father’s Day delivery box!