Instead of Meat

Looking for ways to eat less animal protein? If you’re not ready to jump right into plant-based protein, try some of these ideas. The following foods are a great way to add more flavor, texture, and moisture to your dish.
Mushrooms. Mix in some chopped mushrooms to your meat loaf, burgers, tacos, meat balls, or lasagna. Basically, anywhere you might use ground beef, chicken, or turkey. Use 8 ounces of raw mushrooms to 8 ounces of raw meat. Chop fresh mushrooms by hand or in a food processor and mix in with raw meat. 
Lentils. Lentils are a cheap way to extend your meat. Add cooked lentils to raw ground meat in a three to one ratio of meat to lentils. If you’re not ready for whole lentils in your meatballs, try pureeing them. Pureed lentils make a great binder, replacing eggs and/or breadcrumbs in your burgers and meat balls.
Whole grains and seeds. To stretch out your meat and add in more nutrients try adding some cooked grains. Quinoa is a great option because it is a small grain that can be mixed in without changing the texture of the meat too much. Try adding 1 cup cooked quinoa per pound of raw meat. For a binder, try 3/4 cup dry oats or 1 tablespoon of soaked chia seeds per pound of ground meat
All these ideas will add more fiber and nutrients to your dish. They will also stretch out your meat giving you a bit more bang for your buck! Talk about a win win! 
Mushroom Burger
Servings: 4
8 ounces lean ground beef
8 ounces white button mushrooms, diced
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon paprika
2 teaspoons olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Combine beef, mushrooms, Worcestershire sauce, and seasonings in a bowl. Mix well and form into 4 patties.
2. If using a grill, brush patties with olive oil to prevent sticking. If using a pan, add oil to pan and heat on medium. Cook patties for 3 to 5 minutes per side.
3. Serve on a bun with whatever toppings you like!
Serving Size: 1 burger

Nutrition Information per Serving: 188.1 calories, 14 grams total fat, 5 grams of saturated fat, 2.4 grams carbohydrate, 1 grams fiber, 11.5 grams protein, 93.7 milligrams sodium, 164.1 milligrams potassium, 1.2 grams sugar
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