A warning about Meatless Mondays

I don’t actively practice Meatless Monday. I refuse to let witty alliterations be the boss of my menu planning.  Besides, Mondays are more like Leftovers Monday.  And some leftover meat is best not left for Taco Tuesday.  

The concept of Meatless Monday has been around for a while to encourage people to start the week off right by making healthier meals. Now, I don’t necessarily agree that eating meat starts your week off all wrong, but I just can’t imagine eating meat with every single meal. I doubt I could even afford to. So although they may not fall on a Monday, meat-free meals make their way into our house more than once a week.

If you live in a carnivorous household and wish to sneak in more vegetarian meals, heed my warning.


Don’t tell them. Especially in response to “What’s for dinner?” or “Omigod I’m so hungry”  

Eliminate the words vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free and quinoa from your response. Refrain from family meetings or soliloquies about the importance of limited, lean proteins, natural fiber and supporting local, sustainable farming practices.    

Because the minute you tell them something is missing, it increases in value. They weren’t even thinking about the sausage, but now that you mention it’s….not…..here… Suddenly, the sausage is Extremely Important.

Total mutiny. This meatless meal has left a subconscious void. They search to fill it. Soon after dinner, fingers probe into the cupboards and the cereal supply.  We’ve had no real sustenance….help us… help us kind Cheerios.

Meatless Monday Fail: Area man reacts to wife’s proclamation that the family “become more aware of their meat intake”.

Just cook it and serve it. Normalize all meals, treating them as equals.  And when your family likes it, you can enjoy a private moment of accomplishment. 

Is the discussion important? Absolutely.  But unless they’re paying for it, not everyone appreciates a lesson with their meal. They just want to eat. There are plenty of opportunities for conversations about food choices. When grocery shopping or teaching your kid to cook. When looking at a slimmer food bill. When your spouse becomes as virile and energetic as a hairy-chested centaur.

Practice meatless meals more often, steadily and silently on any day of the week. They will become commonplace without all the drama of fanfare and resistance. 

Do you recognize Meatless Mondays? Do you get resistance to healthy menu changes?  










5 thoughts on “A warning about Meatless Mondays

  1. Tricia says:

    Amy- I totally agree! I don’t do meatless Mondays but I do try and avoid animal protein for lunch and breakfast, at least during the week. I can’t always do it, especially when traveling but I seem to function a lot better when I do. Nice blog by the way!

    • Tigerlily says:

      I was startled by the whole concept of meatless Mondays. Does this mean that most people eat meat the other 6 days of the week? I actually have to remind myself to cook something meat based once or twice a week as my natural choice tends to be vegetarian, without even thinking about it. And spot on about not making it an issue. If I don’t tell my always-hungry male teen I’m “leaving out” meat he won’t notice because it is simply normal in our family.

      • aejohnson says:

        I guess it depends where you live/cultural parameters/etc on how much meat is eaten in any given household. I grew up eating meat daily. So did my husband – I believe only in the U.S. do we really need an awareness campaign like Meatless Monday.

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