Meatless Monday: Mexican “Baked” Sweet Potato
Did you hear about how Jay-Z and Beyonce went on a 22-day vegan diet to cleanse themselves spiritually and mentally? Well, I went on a 2.2 hour vegetarian cleanse last night and made this absolutely delicious, meatless, Mexican Baked Sweet Potato.
What? Cleansing yourself of meat for 2 hours doesn’t make any sense? Hmmmm… does 22 days make more sense?
I’m not trying to debate the merits of a vegan diet or say that it’s less healthy than a meatless diet, I’m just saying it’s pointless to cut something out of your diet for no real reason especially when you know you’ll return to it shortly after.
Regardless of how bogus their dalliance with a meatless diet was though, eating vegan or vegetarian is a great way to add diversity to your diet and it doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice protein. It’s also really tasty.
“Baked” sweet potatoes are one of my favorite quick & easy meals. They’re not technically baked (hence the quotation marks), simply microwaved for about 5-7 minutes, which gives them their “quick & easy” status.
I decided to dress up my boring old baked tater while home in Tucson over the holidays, giving it a Southwestern/Mexican feel.
This makes the perfect Meatless Monday meal because it provides an extremely balanced combo of carbs, healthy fat, protein, and a potato boat full of fiber.
Who would have thought you could pack 20 grams of protein into a meatless meal with whole foods? It’s amazing.
This dish isn’t technically vegan because I used greek yogurt as a substitute for sour cream, but you could leave it out if you have real dietary restrictions (or the 22-day kind, it’s your life).
The whole shebang takes about 10 minutes to make from start to finish.
Mexican Baked Sweet Potato
1 Medium Sweet Potato
1/2 C. Cooked Lentils (or other beans)
1/1 C. Lettuce, shredded
3 oz. Fat Free Greek Yogurt
2 T. Salsa
1. Rinse sweet potato and puncture it several times with a knife.
2. Wrap it in a damp paper towel and microwave for about 5-7 minutes depending on size (I did 6).
3. Cut sweet potato in half and top with beans…
…and salsa, lettuce, and greek yogurt.
4. Top with slices of avocado, or make a quick basic guacamole: 1/4 of an avocado, tsp. salsa, squirt of lemon juice, 1/4 tsp. garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
Total Calories: about 360 (20 g. protein, 13.5 g. fiber)
Btw, the very day J & B’s cleanse was over, they celebrated with a lavish meal full of seafood. Eek, I guess they need another spiritual flushing.
Note: before anyone jumps down my throat about microwaves being bad, read this article from Harvard.