Guest Post: Starch Based Recipes by Dr John McDougall

The McDougall Diet is based on starches with vegetables and fruits. The McDougall Diet does not contain any animal foods or vegetable oils. The McDougall Diet may contain some salt, sugar, and/or spice.

Historical writings and pictures tell how wealthy people who ate meat, poultry, fish, cheese, milk, etc. became fat and sick. The difference is that now billions of people, because of “progress” (the industrial revolution and the harnessing of fossil fuels), eat like the aristocrats of the past. What else would you expect from eating all these rich foods? Served at Burger King & Dairy Queen (McDonalds, Taco Bell, KFC, all restaurants, groceries, etc.)

All animal products are full of cholesterol, animal protein and fat; with no starch, dietary fiber, or other essential sugars for health. They are infiltrated with big doses of people poisoning environmental chemicals and loads of infection-causing bacteria, parasites, and viruses.

The meat industries say you must eat their products for protein…The dairy industries say their products are necessary for calcium “Omega-3 fats” and fish comes to mind, immediately. The truth is that protein and calcium deficiencies have never been reported on any natural diet sufficient in calories and only plants can make omega-3 fats. No fish or other animal can make them.

If not to save yourself and your family, how about saving planet Earth? The livestock industries are producing over half of the global warming gasses. The meat, poultry, egg, dairy, and fish industries are major unregulated polluters of the environment.

Starches are the key to discovering health. Starches are plant parts that store large amounts of energy for daily activities. They are very low in fat with no cholesterol. They are rich in protein, vitamins, and minerals. Starches are essential to satisfy your appetite and they make you trim, strong, and healthy.

Starches contain sufficient calories to easily meet the energy requirements of an active person, and they’re also abundant in essential amino acids (from proteins), essential fats, fibers, and minerals. Many starches, such as the much-maligned potato, have a full complement of vitamins as well, whereas grains and legumes need the help of fruits or green and yellow vegetables in order to provide adequate vitamin A and C.

The secret of the McDougall Program is to make starches the centerpiece of your diet with various fruits and vegetables added to the mix. To make these meals taste great, just add your favorite sauces and seasonings.


These recipes are in the McDougall Cookbook app for Android and iOS. This release contains hundreds of new recipes with over 800 recipes total.

Artichoke Spread

This is delicious as a spread for sandwiches, as a dip for crackers or veggies, or stuffed into pita and topped with chopped tomatoes, cucumbers and sprouts.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Servings: Makes about 3 cups

  • 2 14 ounce cans artichoke hearts in water, drained and rinsed
  • 1 15 ounce can white beans, drained and rinsed
  • 4 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 4 green onions, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • ⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth.

Quick Asparagus Basil Soup

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 4

  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 cups chopped asparagus stalks
  • 1½ cups frozen chopped hash brown potatoes
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup asparagus tips
  • 1 cup soy or rice milk
  • ½ cup chopped fresh basil

Place the broth, asparagus stalks, and potatoes in a medium pan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and cook for 5 minutes, or until asparagus is just barely tender. Remove from heat and puree until smooth.

Meanwhile, place the water and asparagus tips in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and cook for 5 minutes. Drain and set aside. Add soy or rice milk to pureed soup, mix well. Add basil and heat through. Stir in asparagus tips. Adjust seasonings to taste and serve at once.

Easy Mayan Black Beans

This is one of those simple, 5 ingredient recipes that is so easy to put together, yet it has a delicious, hearty flavor. This will serve 2 people when used as a topping for baked potatoes or rolled up in a tortilla. It is also wonderful heaped into a baked tortilla boat. (See the recipe in the August 2004 newsletter for an explanation on these tortilla boats.)

Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 2

  • 1 15 ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup fresh salsa: mild, medium, or hot
  • ½ cup green onions, chopped
  • ¾ cup frozen corn kernels
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

Place all the ingredients except the cilantro in a saucepan and bring to a gentle boil. Reduce heat, cover and cook for about 12 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in the cilantro, if desired, let rest for 1 minute and serve.

Hint: This also makes a wonderful topping for brown rice, or for a simple recipe variation, add about ¾ cup of cooked brown rice to the bean mixture about 5 minutes before the end of the cooking time. This recipe adapts well to precooking: double the recipe, cook ahead of time, refrigerate half for use within the next 2 days, freezing the remainder for later use.

Barbecue Beans Sloppy Joes

I got this recipe from my sister, Carol Van Elderen, who lives in Michigan. She found it on a supermarket card and modified it slightly. Maybe this is a sign that people are changing the kinds of foods that they eat. This is great on a bun with all the usual trimmings, or try it ladled over the bun and eat it with a fork.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes (need cooked rice)
Cooking time: 15 minutes
Servings: 6-8

  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped
  • ¼ cup vegetable broth
  • 3 cups cooked brown rice
  • 2 15 ounce cans pinto beans, undrained
  • ¾ cup fat-free barbecue sauce
  • 1½ tablespoons chili powder
  • whole wheat buns

Place the onion and bell pepper in a non-stick pan with the vegetable broth.

Cook, stirring occasionally until vegetables soften slightly, about 3 minutes. Add remaining ingredients (except the buns) and cook for about 12 minutes, until well heated.

Hints: There are many delicious barbecue sauces on the market shelves these days. Choose one without oil and preferably without high fructose corn syrup. Use another kind of bean to vary the recipe, or maybe one can each of pinto and black or white. There are several manufacturers that make frozen cooked whole grain brown rice that reheats in the microwave in 3 minutes. Trader Joe’s stocks one brand and Whole Foods also carries another brand. Look for these items in the frozen food department.

Baked Potato Salad

This is great for a quick lunch, especially if you have leftover baked potatoes and/or green beans in your refrigerator. (I always make extras for this purpose.)

Preparation Time: 30 minutes
Cooking Time: 1¼ hours
Servings: 4

  • 4 potatoes
  • 2 cups sliced green beans, cooked
  • 4 cups coarsely shredded lettuce
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • ½ cup celery, thinly sliced
  • ½ cup radishes, thinly sliced
  • ¼ cup green onions, chopped
  • ¼ cup oil-free salad dressing of your choice

Wash potatoes, prick with a fork and bake at 400 degrees until done. Cook green beans in a small amount of water until just tender. Drain. Set aside. (Use frozen green beans, if desired, and thaw in cold water. It is not necessary to cook these, unless you wish to.)

Combine lettuce, tomatoes, celery, radishes, onions and green beans. Chill. To serve, slice baked potatoes in half, then cover with some salad mixture. Top all of this with your choice of no-oil salad dressing.

Hint: The potatoes may be used at room temperature or chilled, depending on your preference. The topping mixture made be made ahead and chilled. This makes it easy to take this lunch with you to work and then assemble ingredients just before eating.


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