With the beautiful weather that's been gracing most of the country, you want something quick and easy for your Meatless Monday meal to get out and make the most of the sunshine. Sandwiches are an easy go-to option, and yet the humble sandwich is far from that turkey-and-mayo-on-Wonderbread combo you grew up with. Sandwiches today are beautiful, gourmet, and many of them are also meatless; our favorite meatless sandwich recipes are perfect for spring.
Now with increased flavor comes a bit of increased work. These sandwiches include homemade condiments and sauces and might require a bit more time and effort than the sandwiches your mom made for your school lunchbox growing up. But don't worry -- they're still easy to make and even easier to eat.
Nothing screams "spring" more than a minted pea purée sandwich with radishes. The flavors are bright, particularly when accompanied by lemon quark cheese and basil -- though if basil isn't around where you are just yet, some peppery baby arugula would do nicely as well. While you can absolutely close these sandwiches to take them on the go, they're so beautiful open that it might be worth the extra 20 minutes it would take you to sit down and enjoy them with a fork and knife.
Image: Gloria Cabada-Leman
Revisit a classic for Meatless Monday with these vegetarian tempeh reuben sandwiches. Reubens are renowned for being fairly fattening, with corned beef, Swiss cheese and a mayonnaise-based dressing, but this version, with tempeh standing in for the beef and a pita pocket for fewer carbs, is much healthier and just as tasty. This recipe teaches you how to make your own simple Russian dressing, which you can save and use as a condiment on other sandwiches as well!
Sandwich image via Shutterstock: Denio109
We all love a good vegetarian Greek salad, topped with tons of seasonal, crunchy veggies and a good amount of tangy feta cheese. And it's not even that hard to make for Meatless Monday -- after all, most of the time a chicken or shrimp topping just seems to be getting in the way. The only problem? It's not very rich in protein, leaving you full for a bit but hungry soon after. That problem is solved with a tofu Greek salad. Cubes of tofu blend in seamlessly with feta cheese, making this a crowd pleaser even for tofu skeptics. It's delicious as is, but atop some chewy ciabatta bread or wrapped into a tortilla for a tasty wrap, it's even tastier and easier to eat on the go.
Sandwich image via Shutterstock: Farbled
But let's not forget the classics of veggie sandwich land -- there are a few. One favorite is grilled cheese and tomato -- better for the warmer weather that's coming than the comforting bowl of tomato soup that sometimes accompanies a plain grilled cheese. This version does away with American "cheese" and instead pairs cheddar and colby for a double whammy of cheesy goodness. Choose the best tomatoes you can -- if you can't find good tomatoes near you yet, try using drained, fire-roasted canned tomatoes or even sundried tomatoes instead.
Photo courtesy of The Grain Foods Foundation
For a sandwich that's more breakfast or even dessert than lunch, there's nothing better than an Elvis. Our version spices up the traditional peanut butter and banana with raisin bread, crunchy granola and a touch of honey for some added sweetness. The perfect way to start -- or end! -- your Meatless Monday.
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Top sandwich image via Shutterstock: Sarsmis