I have nothing against vegetarians, or vegans for that matter. I appreciate their drive and dedication to selecting what they eat carefully, whether it be for personal reasons or health benefits. But hard as I might try, as a hardcore foodie, I could never be a vegetarian. I would just miss too many beautiful, incredible meals.

For example, I love the smell of a good barbecue. If I smell it, I’m going to want a burger. Protein substitutes just won’t cut it. I can eat whatever I want a restaurant, and I don’t have to worry about finding carnitas in my veggie bowl. And there are so many meals I would miss if I went vegetarian.

1. The Ultimate Bacon-Wrapped, Veggie-Stuffed Beer Can Burger


Photo by Stephanie DeVaux

Look at this. It covers everything beautiful in this world. Bacon. Barbecue. Burger. And it has veggies, so it’s still healthy, right? Check the recipe here.

2. Star-Shaped Pigs in a Blanket


Photo by Mira Nguyen

I only go to fancy parties for cocktail hours, and I only go to cocktail hours for pigs in a blanket. Whoever paired pastry and pork is literally my hero, and cooking it in shapes is a brilliant idea. Learn how here.

3. Beef Ravioli with Bacon Butter Sauce


Photo by Michelle Loret de Mola

The only thing better than stuffing pasta with cheese is stuffing it with beef. And bacon butter sauce? Drool. Make me this for a dinner date, and I’m yours. Check out the recipe here.

4. Maple-Smoked Pork Chops


Photo by Hannah Lin

Anything maple-flavored gets my vote, but pork chops? It’s not only inspired, it’s just beautiful. Make it yourself.

5. Guinness Marinade Chicken


Photo by Katherine Richter

Guinness + meat = heaven. That’s all I have to say. Here’s the recipe.

6. Sweet Potato Bacon Mac ‘n’ Cheese


Photo by Kelda Baljon

Mac ‘n’ cheese on its own is already heavenly. But just add bacon and your life seriously will change for the better. Trust me. Find the recipe here.

7. Grandma’s Meatballs


Photo by Kirby Barth

Any recipe with “grandma’s” in the title is a guaranteed treat, because grandmas don’t know how to be bad cooks. These hearty (turkey!) balls are a pleaser. Try this recipe.

8. Sriracha Burger


Photo by Kirby Barth

First, God made the hamburger. Then, he made Sriracha. Then we combined both, and we reached nirvana. Reach that nirvana with this recipe.

9. Waffle-Battered Chicken Wings


Gif by Alex Waxenbaum

Why make a simple meal of chicken and waffles when you can batter the chicken itself as a waffle treat? Seems like a pretty sweet deal. Find out how to make it.

10. Bacon Jalapeño Cream Cheese Poppers


Photo by Celeste Holben

This is the kind of appetizer that turns into your entire meal. Hot, creamy, savory, and greasy, they’re definitely the new snack to try out on your friends (and me). Learn how to make them here.

11. Taco Salad with Homemade Salsa


Photo by Raissa Xie

If you can’t run to Chipotle/Taco Bell/Qdoba whenever the fancy strikes you, taco salad (with homemade salsa) really hits the spot. Check out the recipe here.

12. Baked Pepperoni Chips


Photo by Anna Polovick

Yeah, all you do is put them in the oven. But honestly, this is such a great idea that I can’t even be mad I didn’t think of it before. Learn how here.

13. Enchilada Casserole


Photo by Austin Allem

Why limit yourself to one enchilada when you can have an entire casserole? That means 80 more servings, which sounds good to me. Make it like this.

14. Spicy and Cheesy Open Face Buffalo Chicken Sandwich


Photo by Colleen Daly

Sprinkle cheese on meat and I’m good to go. Plus, buffalo chicken? Check out the recipe here.

15. Red Bull Chicken Wings


Photo by Alexis Aumiller

When I’m not feeling caffeinated enough, there’s no better way to get jittery than through some good meat eats. Find out how to make it here.

16. Pulled BBQ Chicken Sandwiches


Photo by Sarah Silbiger

Nothing like buns dripping with pulled chicken goodness. Here’s the recipe.

17. Caramelized Nectarines with Bacon


Photo by Analiese Trimber

“Oh, I can just eat them without bacon!” No. No you cannot. Try out this sweet and salty recipe.

18. Corn Dog Muffins


Photo by Julia Liang

Corn dogs are the most nostalgic festival food that exists. I don’t want my corn muffin without a dog in there too. Find the recipe here.

19. Bacon PB&J Sandwich


Photo by Thomas Sireci

This really blows all my sandwich lunches out of the water. Find out how to make it here.

20. Roast Beef Sandwich with Pesto


Photo by Alex Tom

Nothing like a classic comfort to fill you up. See how to make it here.

21. Chicken Parmesan


Photo by Hannah Cather

Or as Tom Haverford would call it, “Chicky chicky parm parm.” Find it here.