Recipes for Meat-free Monday

You have to consider the future. Whether or not you realise it, your actions today will have an influence on your future as well as on the future of your dependents. If you make proper preparations for your loved ones’ future today, you will ensure that they will be able to maintain their way of living and prosper. When you think about the wealth aspects of your family when you are no longer there for them, it is worthwhile looking into life cover from life insurance companies in South Africa.  When you reflect on the future health quality of your family, it will be meaningful to explore wholesome ways of enjoying food and at the same time contributing to the protection of South Africa’s natural resources.

Following the examples of the United States and United Kingdom, South Africa also launched the Meat-free Monday Campaign in September 2010. This campaign encourages all South Africans to not eat meat, fish or chicken on Mondays.

How does Meat-free Monday contribute to the future of South Africa’s natural resources?

Here are a few interesting facts:

  • 500 times more land is needed to produce 1kg of beef in comparison to producing 1kg of vegetables.
  • 250l of water is needed to produce 1kg of wheat in comparison to 25 000l of water needed for 1kg of meat.
  • According to a United Nations report, emissions from livestock make up 18% of all greenhouse gas emissions, which is more than the combination of all forms of transportation.
  • Compassion in World Farming has revealed that one meat-free day per week in South Africa will result in 11 200 cattle, 2 million chickens, 10 000 pigs and 22 300 sheep not being slaughtered every week!

Why Mondays?

It was decided that the campaign should focus on the first day of the week when most people settle back into their weekly routine. The unhealthy eating habits of the weekend can then be replaced by positive habits, which are sure to encourage success.

Focus on the future

If you are serious about the future of our planet and especially the future of South Africa, and you realise the effects that meat consumption has on climate change, find some delicious meat-free recipes and join this campaign. If you are thoughtful of the future of your dependants and you recognise the financial consequences that they will have to face when you have passed away, ask for affordable life insurance quotes and link your investment in life insurance with your family’s future financial planning.


Meat-free recipes*

Join the campaign and enjoy these meat-free meals on Mondays:

Curried Sweet Potato and Chickpea Stew

Makes 4 servings. Per serving: 315 cal, 10 g fat (3.5 g sat), 50 g carbs, 576 mg sodium, 11 g fibre, 8 g protein


1 1/2 tbsp. canola oil
1 1/2 cups thinly sliced onion
2 cups coarsely chopped green bell pepper
1 1/2 tbsp. curry powder
1/2 tbsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. salt, divided
1 qt low-sodium vegetable broth
4 cups peeled 1/2-inch pieces of sweet potato or butternut squash
1 can (19 oz.) unsalted chickpeas, drained
1 cup light coconut milk
1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro (coriander or Chinese parsley)
3/8 tsp. ground black pepper

1. Heat oil in a large stockpot (or Dutch oven) over medium heat. Stir in onion and bell pepper; cook for 8 minutes or until tender.

2. Stir in curry powder, cumin, and 1/4 teaspoon salt; cook for 2 minutes. Add vegetable broth and sweet potatoes and bring to a boil; reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes or until potatoes are tender.

3. Remove 1 cup of sweet potatoes and mash with a fork. Stir mashed potatoes back into pot and bring to a boil; reduce heat and boil gently for 5 minutes to allow mixture to thicken. Stir in chickpeas, coconut milk, cilantro, and black pepper. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes or until warm throughout. Stir in remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and serve.

Black Sesame Tofu & Vegetable Stir-Fry

Makes 4 servings. Per serving: 321 cal, 14 g fat (2.1 g sat), 38 g carbs, 552 mg sodium, 6 g fibre, 13 g protein


1 1/3 cups cooked instant brown rice
1 package (14 oz.) extra-firm tofu, drained
1 1/2 tbsp. black sesame seeds
1 tsp. toasted sesame oil
2 tbsp. peanut oil, divided
1 lb. asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
2 cups packaged shredded carrots (about 6 oz.)
1 large yellow or red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
4 green onions, trimmed and cut crosswise into 1-inch lengths
3 tbsp. freshly squeezed orange juice
2 tbsp. light miso
1 tbsp. low-sodium soy sauce
1/2 tsp. cornstarch (maizina)

1. Prepare rice according to package directions. Meanwhile, blot tofu dry with paper towels and press to remove some of the liquid; cut crosswise into 8 slices. Place sesame seeds in a shallow bowl and dredge tofu through seeds.

2. Heat sesame oil and 1 tablespoon peanut oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Add tofu and cook for 4 to 5 minutes or until nicely browned. Flip over and continue cooking for 4 to 5 minutes or until nicely browned on other side. Remove tofu to serving dish.

3. Add remaining peanut oil to skillet and heat. Stir in asparagus and shredded carrots; stir-fry for 4 minutes or until crunchy-tender. Stir in bell pepper and onion; cook for 2 minutes. Reduce heat to low and return tofu to pan.

4. Combine orange juice, miso, soy sauce, and cornstarch in a small bowl; whisk until well blended. Pour juice mixture into skillet and cook for 1 minute, stirring to coat vegetables and tofu. Serve over brown rice.

*Recipes by Maureen Callahan (

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