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How to Adapt Your Favorite Comfort Foods For Any Diet

Whether you're vegan or paleo-friendly, make these simple (and doable) ingredient swaps to enjoy classics like lasagna, pizza, and more.

spaghetti squash, zoodles, zucchini noodles

Searching for paleo-friendly swaps? Looking for vegan solutions? Or simply ingredients that pack a bigger nutritional punch? Every food journey looks different. So we’re sharing easy substitutions and feel-good suggestions for multiple types of diets that are actually doable. Yes, really.

For Spaghetti Night:

  • If you’re eating a paleo-friendly diet: Veggie noodles can do some heavy lifting here. Try a mix of zucchini and butternut squash noodles topped with paleo-friendly ground beef meatballs and a roasted red pepper Romesco sauce.
  • If you’re eating vegan: Top whole wheat pasta with vegan “meatballs” and a marinara sauce.
  • If you’re just looking for a change: Serve spaghetti squash with turkey meatballs and roasted broccoli in a marinara sauce. (Gluten free? Opt for gluten-free turkey meatballs.)

For Burger Night:

  • If you’re eating a paleo-friendly diet: Serve a bison patty topped with avocado slices between thin slices of grilled sweet potato or zucchini for “buns.”
  • If you’re eating vegan: Try a walnut-lentil patty topped with avocado slices and caramelized onions sandwiched between whole wheat buns (or gluten-free buns for a gluten-free alternative).
  • If you’re just looking for a change: Top a salmon patty with sautéed spinach and feta cheese crumbles. Serve between whole wheat buns.

For Pizza Night:

  • If you’re eating a paleo-friendly diet: Try a paleo-friendly cauliflower pizza crust topped with roasted chicken, arugula and cashew cheese. (This works for a gluten-free diet too.)
  • If you’re eating vegan: Serve whole grain vegan naan flatbread topped with marinara sauce, caramelized onions, grilled veggies and a sprinkle of nutritional yeast and herbs.
  • If you’re just looking for a change: Top a whole wheat pizza crust with pesto sauce, arugula, sliced tomatoes and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar.

For Taco Night:

  • If you’re eating a paleo-friendly diet: Try a fish taco bowl made with riced cauliflower and topped with grilled fish, shredded red cabbage slaw made with paleo-friendly mayo, sliced avocado and a mango-jalapeño salsa.
  • If you’re eating vegan: Make a black bean taco bowl with brown rice, black beans, roasted corn, torn spinach leaves and avocado slices. Drizzle with hot sauce.
  • If you’re just looking for a change: Serve a shredded chicken bowl with brown rice, shredded chicken, roasted broccoli, halved cherry tomatoes, sliced avocado and a drizzle of hot sauce.

For Lasagna Night:

  • If you’re eating a paleo-friendly diet: Try sweet potato noodles. You can make your own by carefully using a mandoline or by using a vegetable peeler to cut the potatoes lengthwise. You can layer the noodles with ground beef, sautéed spinach, Romesco sauce and cashew cheese. (Be sure to check the ingredients are paleo-friendly.)
  • If you’re eating vegan: Layer whole wheat lasagna noodles with puréed tofu, sautéed spinach, marinara sauce and vegan cheese.
  • If you’re just looking for a change: Try thin roasted eggplant slices layered with marinara sauce, cottage cheese, sautéed spinach and part-skim mozzarella cheese.

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