Meatless Monday School Lunches

School salad bar

photo: The Epoch Times

Someone is doing a good job in Los Angeles. The nation’s second largest school district, feeding over half a million children daily, has been slowly improving the nutrition profile of its lunches over the last few years.  For example, this year the only milk offered is plain. No more uber-sweetened chocolateor strawberry flavors.

And for the past few weeks, Mondays have been exclusively dedicated to vegetarian fare. Not to diss meat or fish, but in our American culture there is less of an appreciation for food that does not include a flesh component to it. Getting young children to vegetarian dishes based on legumes sounds like a great way to open their minds to healthy and tasty options for the long run.

Do you practice a “meatless” Monday, or other day of the week? What are your favorite meatless dishes?

  • Brian Klein

    I’d love to see a processed food-less day. Or sugar-less day. I think they are focusing on the wrong thing, and not giving rise to where nutrients come from in diets, and where outside toxins might be coming from. Meat is a fairly nutrient dense food, and is not an unhealthy food unless it’s been processed or raised incorrectly.

    • Fooducate

      Good points Brian. The School district is taking some of those steps as well.

  • Angel

    We are meatless every day. :P doing simple research on how they treat animals, let alone what they feed them? Should be enough for people to pass on meat. Also how we process the meat and package. I don’t care if people eat it? But people act like they would just die without it. I’d love to see people eating meat once a week. Instead of eating veggies once a week.

    • Brian Klein

      Looking at how hunter gatherers presumably ate, the once a week mantra would make a lot of sense. I’m guessing they would eat vegetation, small game, insects and the like until they could get the big kill.

      We don’t die without eating meat (I get what you’re trying to say, though), but many people end up with deficiencies if the diet isn’t properly planned. But your point about veggies once a week is a good one. To many people, the meal at Mc Donald’s includes very little veggies, and the meat is atrocious. And at most restaurants, if you ask for veggies on the side instead of french fries, the waiter looks at you like you are crazy.

  • Brian Klein

    BTW, since you asked, one of my favorite meatless dishes is stir-frying vegetables (whatever is on hand) with coconut oil then adding an almond (instead of peanut, just because I like them better) sauce of almond butter, coconut milk, lime, applesauce, ginger, and garlic. Of course you could add meat to it if you wanted to, but it’s quite filling without it.

  • nichole

    As I’m planning our meals for the week I schedule a min. of 2 meatless meals, commonly 3, and sometimes more. We have meatless Mondays, egg dish Wednesdays, and it’s lent (we’re Catholic) so commonly have a vegetarian dish then (vs fish). Saturdays are crockpot meals and Sundays are soups, so it’s not uncommon for those to be vegetarian based either. I’ve found it’s easier for me to quickly make a meal plan if i have a basic plan for what type of recipe I’m looking for.

  • Alisha john


  • Dan M

    I’m glad to hear LA schools are doing Meatless Monday.

    High meat consumption is linked to obesity, heart disease, and even some cancers. It’s also very bad for the planet. And of course, it’s bad for animals.

    It’s inspiring to more schools and every day people reduce their meat intake.

    • Lori

      Actually eating animals is really good for them (just like plants) or it would be if we hadn’t invented industry and overpopulated the planet. If you look at any ecosystem carnivores are a necessity of any food chain. They keep the herbivore population down sothat the plant eeaters don’t annihilate the vegetation. And the herbivores are necessary to spread seeds through their droppings. As omnivores we’d do a little of both, but unfortunately we’ve quite effectively removed ourselves from the food chain.

  • SuzanneJ

    This may be immature, but as an educator, I’m wondering what it’s like to be in a room at 2:30 with 30 kids who just consumed what may have been their only bean-based meal of the week… In any case, it’s great that they’re working to nip this fear of all things meatless in the bud.