Plant-Based Diet For Beginners [Recipes, Meal Plan & Grocery List]

Even if you're just tweaking a few meals each week, eating a wholefood plant-based diet can have a significant impact on your overall health and wellbeing. Whether you're trying to lose weight, strengthen your immunity, enhance your vitality, or get your family into healthy eating habits, we want to show you how easy it can be to enjoy the benefits of a plant-based diet and ultimately get more out of life. Keep reading to learn how to make delicious plant-based diet recipes that are awesome for you, and the environment. 

This Plant-Based Diet Plan For Beginners covers everything you need to know to get started on a journey to better health through plant-based eating:

Plant Based Eating

So what exactly is a plant-based diet? First and foremost, it’s not a “diet” - it doesn’t focus on calorie restrictions or counting macros like carbs and protein. A plant-based diet is a way of eating that's based on foods derived from plants, including fruits, vegetables, wholegrains, nuts and seeds, and excludes or minimises highly refined foods. Put simply, it's focused on integrating more foods into your diet that will nourish your body from the inside out.

Embracing a plant-based approach to eating is often recommended to help address chronic illness, but you don’t need to wait for a health scare to make tweaks to your diet and improve your health today, and for the future. The best part about going plant-based is that it’s not about taking an 'all or nothing' approach. You might start by including one meat-free dinner into your week, or adding more plants into your morning with a healthy breakfast smoothie or superfood porridge or bircher muesli. Whether you choose to go 100% plant-based or not, anyone can benefit from integrating more plants into their diet at any stage of their life.

Plant Based Diet Breakfast Ideas

If you want to try a plant-based breakfast without the hassle of shopping around for ingredients, Craft Smoothie delivers Superfood Smoothie Boxes with everything you need to make plant-based smoothie recipes at home using fresh seasonal produce and organic superfood blends. If you're following a Keto diet or low-carb lifestyle, we also have a Keto Smoothie Box option that's 100% plant-based.

For another superfood breakfast option, check out the brand new range of Instant Superfood Breakfast Pouches from Craft Breakfast, which can be served as a plant-based porridge or bircher muesli.


Plant-Based Diet Recipes

All of the recipes below contain a plant-based source of protein like nuts, seeds, chickpeas or lentils, which can easily be substituted for an alternative source of quality protein. The recipes are super flexible so you can easily tweak the ingredients to match what's in season or what you already have in your kitchen. They're designed to serve 2 people, but can easily be doubled (or tripled). Enjoy playing with maximising the nutrient-density of your meals!

Macro Buddha Bowl Recipe


Macro Buddha Bowl Plant-Based Recipe

Super Seed Mix:

Green Dressing:

Turmeric Tahini Dressing (optional extra):


  1. Combine chickpeas with the spice mix and coconut oil and fry in a pre-heated pan until crispy
  2. Lightly toast seed mix in a pan and when the seeds start to pop, stir in cumin and coconut aminos and then remove from heat
  3. Prepare the green dressing by adding all ingredients to a blender, and prepare the turmeric dressing in a jar
  4. Divide quinoa and salad into two serving bowls
  5. Top with chickpeas, seed mix and dressings
  6. Garnish with sauerkraut, sprialised carrot and avocado

If you don't end up using all of the dressing, just store it in an airtight jar in the fridge - it'll keep fresh for a couple of days.

Strawberry Avocado Summer Salad


Strawberry Avocado Salad Plant-Based Recipe



  1. Divide salad ingredients between two serving bowls
  2. Combine dressing ingredients in a jar and shake until well combined
  3. Dress salads generously

Zucchini Noodles And Hearty Lentil Bolognese


Zucchini Noodles And Lentil Bolognese Plant-Based Diet Recipe


  1. Use a spiraliser to prepare the zucchini noodles and divide between two serving bowls
  2. Heat avocado oil in a pan and add onion, cook into translucent
  3. Add garlic and stir until fragrant
  4. Add lentils and tomatoes to the pan, season with salt and pepper and simmer for 5 minutes
  5. Pour lentil and tomato mixture over noodles and top with basil, balsamic vinegar and yeast flakes


Black Bean Noodles With Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto


Black Bean Noodles With Pesto Plant-Based Diet Recipes


Plant-Based Diet Grocery List

If you’re a beginner, here’s a plant-based diet food list with the key ingredients we recommend for starting a plant-based diet. As you start experimenting with different plant-based recipes and understand which meals and ingredients your body responds best to, you can expand your plant-based shopping list according. 

Fruit and Vegetables: Banana, avocado, orange, apple, berries, onion, garlic, leafy greens, cabbage, carrots, beetroot, kumara, broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, tomatoes, beetroot etc

Wholegrains: Quinoa, buckwheat, oats, brown rice

Oils: Coconut oil and avocado oil (for frying, baking and raw treats), extra virgin olive oil (for dressings)

Sauces: Coconut aminos or tamari (gluten-free soy sauce), preservative-free mustard

Vinegars: Apple cider vinegar, balsamic vinegar

Spices and seasonings: Turmeric, cumin, paprika, Himalayan sea salt, pepper, kelp, savoury yeast flakes

Sweeteners: Raw honey, agave syrup, maple syrup, rice malt syrup, dates and/or other dried fruit

Herbs: Coriander, parsley, basil

Nuts, seeds and superfoods: Almonds, cashews, walnuts, hazelnuts, macadamia nuts, Brazil nuts, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, linseed, sesame seeds, hemp seeds, chia seeds, cacao, goji berries, coconut, vanilla, dates, cinnamon, ginger - just to name a few!

Tea: Chamomile, peppermint, green tea

Legumes: Chickpeas, lentils, black beans

Canned Foods: Coconut cream, chopped tomatoes

Fermented Foods: Coconut yoghurt, sauerkraut

Milks: Coconut milk, almond milk or cashew milk

Butters and spreads: Tahini and nut butter (ie. peanut butter, almond butter or cashew butter)

Utensils: Blender, food processor (or a device that doubles as both) - and that’s it!


Plant-Based Diet Meal Plan

Creating a plant-based meal plan might be easier than you think. Here's our go-to plant-based diet meal plan which includes inspiration for breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert and snack options. You can mix and match the different options to design a plant-based meal plan that works for you and the ingredients you have available in your kitchen.

Plant-Based Diet Breakfast Ideas

Superfood smoothie: We may be biased, but there's no better way to enhance your intake of plant-based nutrients than by having a different smoothie for breakfast each morning. By blending seasonal combinations of fresh fruit and vegetables with balancing superfood blends, you'll be getting a wholefood plant-based source of dietary fibre, protein, healthy fats, antioxidants, essential vitamins and minerals. Find out what you can expect for breakfast with Craft Smoothie.

Smoothie bowl: Try one of these super easy smoothie bowl recipes which are perfect for getting kids (and adults) engaged in healthy eating 

Plant-Based Breakfast Ideas

Plant-Based Diet Snacks Ideas

Chia pudding: Blend 1 cup of coconut water with 1 tablespoon of nut butter, 2 Tbs of chia seeds, a dash of your favourite sweetener and vanilla. Transfer the chia blend to a jar and top off with a few berries and your favourite superfoods.

Bliss balls: For a basic bliss ball recipe, all you need is dates, nuts, coconut and cacao and you're away! There are literally millions of different bliss ball recipes online, but don't be afraid to experiment with your own combinations and adjust the fruit to nut ratio to suit. Pro tip - including oats is a cheap way to bulk up your bliss balls and increase the fibre content.

Kale chips: Wash and dry kale leaves, drizzle with avocado oil or coconut oil and season with salt, kelp and nutritional yeast flakes. Bake for around 10 to 15 minutes at 180°C or until the edges are brown.

Kale Chips


Plant-Based Diet Lunch Ideas

Macro buddha bowl: Learn how to make the ultimate buddha bowl with our recipe above

Cabbage wrap with hummus, avocado and sauerkraut: Keep it simple with a gut-friendly, plant-powered and protein-packed wrap!

Seasonal salad with green protein dressing: Get crafty with new season salad ingredients so lunch never gets boring. Scroll up for some recipe inspiration


Plant-Based Diet Dinner Ideas

Zucchini noddles with lentil bolognese: Get your zoodle on with our tasty recipe above

Plant-based pizza with gluten-free broccoli base: We’re loving this broccoli crust pizza recipe at the moment - it's awesome topped with hummus and pesto 

Black bean noodles with sun-dried tomato and basil pesto: See our plant-based recipes above to learn how to make this crafty take on a Italian-style meal


Plant-Based Diet Dessert Ideas

Turmeric latte: Here’s our easy turmeric latte recipe that's ideal for a low sugar, nutrient-dense dessert

Superfood chocolate: Curb your cravings by melting together 1 tablespoon of nut butter, 1 tablespoon of honey (or other sweeteners), 2 tablespoons of coconut oil and 1 tablespoon of cacao. Pour the melted mixture into a container lined with baking paper and sprinkle with your favourite superfoods - coconut, goji berries and cacao nibs are a winning combo. Store in the freezer until set and don't forget to share!

Turmeric Latte Recipe

Remember you don't have to make radical changes to start enjoying the benefits of a plant-based diet. It's not about creating restrictions around what you can and can't eat, but rather adding more nourishing wholefoods to your diet. And the benefits of eating more plants will extend beyond how you feel - you'll start to notice the benefits from the outside too! 

If you want to experiment with a plant-based breakfast routine, give Craft Smoothie a try and we'll deliver everything you need to make 100% plant-based superfood smoothies at home. 



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