The thought of a vegan dinner can invoke an image of bland tofu or overcooked, mushy vegetables for the unknowing diner. However, it tends to be anything but those things. Vegan dinners can be some of the most beautiful and flavorful meals to exist while also contributing to a healthy body and a cruelty-free world. With a wide variety of processed vegan alternatives as well as more plant-based whole foods available and accessible than ever before, vegan entrees can be extremely labor-intensive masterpieces or simple and unrefined delicious bowls. Vegan entrees can be typical dinner fare, such as pizza, Mac and cheese, casseroles and soup or more whole foods based dishes like quinoa bowls, lentil soups and curried vegetables.
We understand that it’s easy to get into a mealtime rut and sometimes dinner can end up being the same few recipes in rotation, or simply purchasing frozen vegan pizzas or having pasta on repeat. Fortunately, we’ve scoured the internet and our home recipes for the best and most creative vegan entrees to inspire you. We’ve included a wide range of recipes from quick and simple to more elaborate and time-intensive. We’ve also included a variety of recipes that are more whole foods based as well as ones that are a bit more processed but just happen to hit that comfort food spot. Whatever your flavor preferences and cooking style, we’ve got recipes for you! Read on to find some of the best vegan entrees that will delight your stomach and help you feel more creative in no time!
Simple and Whole Foods Based Vegan Entrees Recipes
The following recipes are some of our favorite simple and whole foods-based recipes. Many of these recipes are just a variety of basic kitchen staples such as vegetables, nuts, grains and spices. They keep the processed foods to a minimum such as oils and sugars. These recipes tend to come together quickly while offering delicious and nourishing entrees that can satisfy most palates. We love these meals to keep on hand as staples to make sure we always have a few super healthy meals throughout the week to keep us feeling our absolute best.
Recipe: African Curried Coconut Soup
Where to Find it: Frontier Co-op
Why We Love it: This simple recipe relies heavily on a variety of spices to make a delicious and filling soup that is definitely a meal. This recipe uses nutrient-dense chickpeas and millet for iron and protein as well as coconut milk for a healthy dose of fat along with vegetables for a variety of vitamins and minerals. It’s amazing served as is or with some gluten-free flatbread.
Recipe: Curried Lentil Soup
Where to Find it: Running on Real Food
Why We Love it: This soup is extremely flavorful and a great way to get in lentils if you have them but don’t use them often. We love that it comes together so quickly and easily and is perfect for a weeknight dinner. It could be a little more filling so either add in sweet potatoes or white potatoes or perhaps buy a nice crusty bread to enjoy with it.
Recipe: Restaurant Style Chickpea Tikka Masala
Where to Find it: Watch What U Eat
Why We Love it: At first glance, this two-part meal may seem a little complicated or time consuming, but we promise it’s easy to make and is ready in forty minutes or less! The ingredients are all easy to find but come together to make an authentic tasting Indian dish. We highly recommend serving this over some brown basmati rice for a more filling meal.
Recipe: Green Goddess Spring Socca
Where to Find it: The Full Helping
Why We Love it: This beautiful and unique meal is for all the chickpea lovers out there. Socca is a flatbread made from chickpea flour and it’s absolutely amazing and will surely become a new staple. We love the simplicity of this recipe and how light and fresh it is, making it great for nights when you want something lighter or you’re not super hungry. If you want to make this a little more filling consider drizzling it with cashew cream or adding a hearty sprinkling of almond milk ricotta to the top.
Recipe: Vegan Buddha Bowl with Tofu and Edamame
Where to Find it: Running on Real Food
Why We Love it: This beautiful bowl is fantastically healthy and most of the elements can be made in large batches before the week starts so you can eat this for dinner one night and take it for lunch easily as well. We love how flavorful the almond butter sauce is and just how protein-packed this meal is. It is super filling and a great healthy option for those nights when you just don’t think another pizza will cut it.
Recipe: Sweet Potato Quinoa Bowl
Where to Find it: Lil Luna
Why We Love it: This simple bowl comes together under forty minutes and boasts some of the healthiest and most delicious simple foods! It offers a range of nutrients and filling foods from sweet potato, to quinoa, to black beans and avocado, you will leave the table feeling nourished and satisfied.
One of our favorite whole foods based homemade meals is quite simple. It’s a stuffed sweet potato served over a bed of your favorite leafy greens. It’s nutrient-dense and has a great variety of flavors and textures while being easily customizable for everyone’s unique preferences.
Comfort Food Style Vegan Entrees Recipes
These are some of our favorite vegan comfort food recipes. These may be more processed, however, not all are. They are reminiscent of some of our childhood favorites and can satisfy the craving when nothing else will do (sorry kale). Many of these recipes are great ways to introduce people to vegan dinners as they are familiar sounding and can help them understand just how diverse and delicious plant-based eating can be!
Recipe: Vegan Caramelized Mushroom Pizza
Where to Find it: The Curious Chickpea
Why We Love it: This recipe takes a bit more prep time with making the garlic white sauce and mushrooms, as well as dough if you’re making it fresh, but it’s pizza and therefore worth it. This amazing pizza is a great departure from traditional red sauce pizza and is savory and delicious and perfect for all the mushroom lovers. This is a great meal for weekends or when you want to impress guests with something a little more fancy.
Recipe: Super Creamy Spinach Artichoke Vegan Lasagna
Where to Find it: Stacey Homemaker
Why We Love it: This dish takes a little extra time but is totally worth it for the comforting and filling meal you get to enjoy. It’s a new take on classic lasagna, using creamy cashew-based spinach and artichoke dip in addition to cheese for an extra flavorful and filling dinner. We love just how creamy it is and the incorporation of vegetables such as mushrooms and zucchini keeps it feeling a little more fresh and healthy.
Recipe: Vegan Mozzarella Grilled Cheese
Where to Find it: It Doesn’t Taste Like Chicken
Why We Love it: We get it that grilled cheese isn’t hard, but we promise that it’s worth making your own cheese for this recipe. The cashew-based mozzarella is amazing and has a great flavor that works well on its own or pairs well with more intense flavors such as pesto or fire-roasted tomatoes if you like a little something extra in your sandwich. We also love that it’s a less processed option than store-bought slices or shreds and therefore a healthier meal even if it is comfort food.
Recipe: Oven Baked Vegan Meatball Subs
Where to Find it: Nora Cooks
Why We Love it: This delicious recipe comes together surprisingly quickly to make a hearty and comforting meal. The chickpea meatballs are super healthy and easy to make and really the only thing you have to make for the recipe. You can make your own cheese or sauce, but it’s also a great quick meal by just using jarred marinara sauce and a bagged shred, like So Delicious mozzarella shreds. This meal is great served alongside some fries or salad depending on your mood.
Recipe: Vegan Black Bean Tacos
Where to Find it: Healthier Steps
Why We Love it: These tacos are flavorful and filled with fiber and come together rather quickly! We love that they use black beans as a hearty, protein-rich filling in lieu of more processed vegan meats. These are absolutely delicious served with vegan pepper jack shreds, avocado, romaine and a hint of cashew cream. If you’re pressed for time, some store-bought salsa and guacamole will round these out and keep the recipe quick and easy to make.
Recipe: Vegan Loaded Nacho Cheese Fries
Where to Find it: Jessica in the Kitchen
Why We Love it: This recipe is as beautiful as it is delicious and a great option for a less traditional dinner. Fries are the ultimate comfort food and when combined with nacho cheese, beans, corn and your favorite toppings, they make a filling meal that is healthy too!
Recipe: Vegan Butternut Squash Risotto
Where to Find it: The Hidden Veggies
Why We Love it: This meal is really delicious and a clever way to use the abundant butternut squash found in markets most of the fall and winter. It’s pretty easy to make as long as you have a good knife to cut through the squash. Consider serving this with a protein source such as vegan chick’n or with some beans to make it a slightly more filling meal.
Recipe: Cheesy Vegan Cauliflower Casserole
Where to Find it: Vegan Huggs
Why We Love it: This recipe is so creamy and nourishing and exceptionally delicious. We love the idea of using cauliflower in place of pasta for a Mac and cheese feel but with a little less heaviness and far more nutrients. This recipe would taste equally delicious with broccoli added in or used in place of the cauliflower for a delicious twist. Throwing in roasted or boiled potatoes with the cauliflower can make this meal a bit more filling for those with a larger appetite.
Recipe: Vegan Pot Pie
Where to Find it: Nora Cooks
Why We Love it: This pot pie hits all the comfort food spots and is so comforting. It takes a bit of extra time and effort to make, but is so worthwhile, especially when you’re craving a hearty and filling meal when it’s cold outside. This is a great recipe to serve to guests who may be skeptical of a vegan dinner, just be sure to use a vegan chicken such as a Gardein product instead of tofu for maximum deliciousness (and familiarity).
Recipe: Vegan Eggplant Parmesan Bake
Where to Find it: Layers of Happiness
Why We Love it: This is a great way to enjoy eggplant parmesan and is far less processed than most versions, making it a great option if you want something more comforting but without feeling heavy or weighed down afterwards. We love the homemade marinara sauce and the fact that it uses quinoa in it for an extra dose of protein and heartiness. The cashew-based mozzarella is absolutely delicious and adds the perfect amount of creaminess without extra added oils.
Recipe: Vegan Fish & Chips
Where to Find it: Carrots & Flowers
Why We Love it: This recipe is worth it when you want something more traditional and are craving classic restaurant fare. It takes a little effort to source out all the ingredients and some time to cook but you will be rewarded with a crisp and deliciously fatty meal that will satisfy your desire for anything more processed. As a fair warning, this isn’t whole foods based but it’s perfect for those days when nothing else will satisfy your desire for something a little more traditional and fried.
Recipe: Baked Ziti with Spring Vegetables
Where to Find it: Bonberi
Why We Love it: This recipe is really easy to make but has a wide variety of textures and flavors making it absolutely amazing. We love the use of a variety of spring vegetables in this pasta dish and the mozzarella atop it just completes the meal. You may want to double it if you’re serving this to a family or if you just want to take some leftovers to work or school for a few days.
Recipe: Pulled Jackfruit Sandwiches - Vegan Pulled Pork
Where to Find it: Vegan Richa
Why We Love it: This is the absolute best barbecue food. We love the flavorful and savory jackfruit combined with a light yet creamy slaw mix all on a bun for the ultimate summer dish. This is great served alongside some grilled vegetables or if you’re feeling indulgent, some potato chips. We won’t judge you!
Recipe: Vegan Quesadillas with Chickpeas
Where to Find it: Beauty Bites
Why We Love it: This recipe comes together quickly and is a really unique combination of flavors. We love that it uses protein-rich chickpeas in place of cheese, however, a sprinkle of your favorite vegan cheese shreds wouldn’t hurt if you’re partial to more traditional, cheese style quesadillas. We recommend trying this recipe as is and if you love it, experiment with using different beans for a slightly different and unique recipe.
Recipe: Baked Vegan Mac and Cheese
Where to Find it: Simple Veganista
Why We Love it: This recipe is really vegan comfort food at its best. Warm, gooey, breadcrumb laden Mac and cheese made with a mix of whole foods and a few processed to make the perfect tasting dinner experience. We love serving this with some cooked greens like spinach or kale to help balance out the density of the dish and add an extra dose of nutrients.
Recipe: Vegan “BLT” Sandwich
Where to Find it: Minimalist Baker
Why We Love it: This recipe is quite delicious and a really healthy light dinner option. We love eggplant bacon and it keeps this recipe a bit lighter than using a more processed vegan bacon, although feel free to substitute one if you’re craving it or want a bit more of a filling meal. We highly recommend making this meal whenever you have access to fresh, locally grown tomatoes as their texture and delicious flavor will really shine through.