best vegetarian dinner recipes

best vegetarian dinner recipes

best vegetarian dinner recipes

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best vegetarian dinner recipes

These vegetarian meals are full of healthy seasonal veggies, hearty and satisfying, you won’t miss the meat.

  • Butternut Lasagna – Our favorite vegetarian lasagna (cover photo) featuring butternut squash – perfect for the weeknights (make it ahead) and special enough for your holiday table!
  • Broccoli Quinoa Cakes! These Broccoli Quinoa Cakes can be made in 30 minutes & are a delicious healthy vegetarian meal that your whole family will love!
  • Roasted Cauliflower Pasta is full of flavor and nutrients! Made with more cauliflower than pasta, and tossed with toasted walnuts, garlic, parsley and lemon zest – a delicious fall-inspired dinner recipe!
  • Oaxacan Baked Sweet Potatoes are infused with Mexican flavors, served over optional Mole Sauce. Healthy, flavorful and perfect for Sunday meal prep.
  • Emerald Dal – is one of the most flavorful, plant-based, vegetarian meals on the blog! Packed full of spinach making it especially high in nutrients and flavor! Rich, fragrant, and loaded with protein, think of this Indian- inspired dinner like you would, Saag Paneer, but substituting lentils instead of the Cheese!
best vegetarian dinner recipes
best vegetarian dinner recipes

Some Recipes

Caponata pasta

Whip up our easy vegetarian caponata pasta in just 20 minutes. It’s simple to make, budget-friendly and packs three of your five-a-day into one delicious meal


  • 4 tbsp olive oil (or use the oil from your chargrilled veg, see below)
  • 1 large Onion , finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely sliced
  • 250g chargrilled Mediterranean veg (peppers and aubergines, if possible) from a jar, pot or deli counter, drained if in oil (you can use this oil in place of the olive oil) and roughly chopped
  • 400g can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp small capers
  • 2 tbsp raisins
  • 350g rigatoni, penne or another short pasta shape
  • bunch basil leaves, picked
  • parmesan (or vegetarian alternative), shaved, to serve


Heat the oil in a large pan and cook the onion for 8-10 mins until starting to caramelise (or for longer if you have time – the sweeter the better). Add the garlic for the final 2 mins of cooking time.

Tip in the mixed veg, tomatoes, capers and raisins. Season well and simmer, uncovered, for 10 mins, or until you have a rich sauce.

Meanwhile, boil the kettle. Pour the kettleful of water into a large pan with a little salt and bring back to the boil. Add the pasta and cook until tender with a little bite, then drain, reserving some of the pasta water. Tip the pasta into the sauce, adding a splash of pasta water if it needs loosening. Scatter with the basil leaves and parmesan, if you like, and serve straight from the pan

Walnut and Lentil Bolognese


  • 2 tablespoonsextra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 cupgrated carrots
  • 1 cupminced celery
  • 1 cupfinely minced yellow onion
  • 6garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cupraw walnuts, finely chopped
  • 1 cupdried brown or green lentils, rinsed
  • 4 cupsvegetable stock or broth
  • 1 (24-ounce)jar marinara sauce
  • 1 cupred wine, such as Pinot Noir
  • 2 teaspoonsgarlic powder
  • 2 teaspoonsItalian seasoning
  • 2 teaspoonsfreshly cracked black pepper
  • 1 teaspoonsea salt, plus more to taste
  • 1 poundcooked pappardelle or tagliatelle, for serving
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese or vegan Parmesan cheese, for serving (optional)


Heat the oil in a large saucepan or braiser over medium heat. Once the oil is glistening, add the carrots, celery, and onions and cook until softened, about 6 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute more.

And, Add the walnuts and lentils, stir to combine. Add the stock, marinara, wine, garlic powder, Italian seasoning, pepper, and salt. Stir to combine again, then increase the heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce thickens and the lentils are cooked to your liking, about 35 minutes.

Transfer 2 cups of the sauce to a blender or food processor and blend until mostly smooth. Return the blended sauce back to the pan and stir to combine. Taste and add more salt as needed.

Serve the bolognese over your favorite pasta, topped with Parmesan if desired.

best vegetarian dinner recipes
best vegetarian dinner recipes

Best Lentil Soup

This simple vegan lentil soup recipe comes together quickly with mostly pantry ingredients. Be sure to have your ingredients prepped and ready before you start cooking! Recipe yields four large bowls of soup, or six more modest servings.

How to Make the Best Lentil Soup?

Five reasons to love this recipe:

  1. The recipe calls for seasonal vegetables and affordable pantry ingredients, but tastes gourmet.
  2. This lentil soup has an amazing hearty texture that’s lightly creamy (yet there is no cream). The trick is to blend up a portion of the soup once the lentils are tender, and then pour it back into the pot. It’s like magic.
  3. This nutritious, well-balanced soup counts as a meal if you enjoy a generous portion. Lentils are rich in protein, fiber, iron and folate.
  4. Lentil soup packs well for lunch in a leak-proof container, and it tastes even better the next day.
  5. This soup freezes and defrosts well. Make soup now and enjoy it later!

Homemade Vegetarian Chili

The smoky, complex flavor of this simple vegetarian chili comes from basic pantry ingredients, vegetables and spices! It makes great leftovers, too. Recipe yields 4 large or 6 moderate servings of chili.


  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium red onion, chopped
  • 1 large red bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, chopped
  • 2 ribs celery, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon salt, divided
  • 4 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder*
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 ½ teaspoons smoked paprika*
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 large can (28 ounces) or 2 small cans (15 ounces each) diced tomatoes**, with their juices
  • 2 cans (15 ounces each) black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (15 ounces) pinto beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 cups vegetable broth or water
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, plus more for garnishing
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar or lime juice, to taste
  • Garnishes: chopped cilantro, sliced avocado, tortilla chips, sour cream or crème fraîche, grated cheddar cheese, etc.


  1. In a large Dutch oven or heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat, warm the olive oil until shimmering. Add the chopped onion, bell pepper, carrot, celery and ¼ teaspoon of the salt. Stir to combine and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender and the onion is translucent, about 7 to 10 minutes.
  2. Add the garlic, chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika and oregano. Cook until fragrant while stirring constantly, about 1 minute.
  3. Add the diced tomatoes and their juices, the drained black beans and pinto beans, vegetable broth and bay leaf. Stir to combine and let the mixture come to a simmer. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally and reducing heat as necessary to maintain a gentle simmer, for 30 minutes.
  4. Remove the chili from the heat and discard the bay leaf. For the best texture and flavor, transfer 1 ½ cups of the chili to a blender, making sure to get some of the liquid portion. Securely fasten the lid and blend until smooth (watch out for hot steam), then pour the blended mixture back into the pot. (Or, you can blend the chili briefly with an immersion blender, or mash the chili with a potato masher until it reaches a thicker, more chili-like consistency.)
  5. Add the chopped cilantro, stir to combine, and then mix in the vinegar, to taste. Add salt to taste, too—I added ¼ teaspoon more at this point. Divide the mixture into individual bowls and serve with garnishes of your choice. This chili will keep well in the refrigerator for about 4 days or you can freeze it for longer-term storage.
best vegetarian dinner recipes
best vegetarian dinner recipes

Cheese Tortellini In Creamy Marinara

Cheese tortellini makes the best quick dinner recipe! Serve it up in a creamy marinara sauce flavored with goat cheese and basil.


  • 12 to 16 ounces frozen or refrigerated cheese tortellini
  • 28 ounce can crushed fire roasted tomatoes (or best quality crushed tomatoes)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 cups baby spinach leaves, tightly packed (or chopped spinach)
  • 8 fresh basil leaves
  • 4 ounce goat cheese log


  1. Boil the tortellini according to the package instructions (fresh usually takes 2 to 3 minutes and frozen takes 2 to 5 minutes to boil). Then drain it.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, place the crushed tomatoes, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, garlic powder, oregano, kosher salt, spinach, and whole basil leaves. Bring to a simmer, then cover and simmer while the pasta cooks or at least 10 minutes.
  3. When the pasta is done and drained, add it to the skillet. Crumble in the goat cheese into the sauce and stir until a creamy sauce forms (if you’d like, save out a few crumbles for topping). Serve immediately.

Spicy Skillet Lasagna With Ricotta and Spinach

Instead of baking lasagna sheets flat in a pan, we use wavy noodles rolled into pinwheels and arranged so their ruffled edges become browned and crispy as they bake. This turns every serving into the kind of textural marvel that in traditional lasagna is only really possible around the outer edges but is arguably the best part! The savory spice from cumin seeds and crushed red pepper flakes in the vegetarian sauce means you won’t miss the meat here.


¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium white onion
6 garlic cloves
 1 tsp. ground cumin
 1 28-oz. can plus 1 15-oz. can crushed San Marzano tomatoes
 3 sprigs basil, leaves picked
 1 Tbsp. crushed red pepper flakes
 1 Tbsp. Diamond Crystal or 1¾ tsp. Morton kosher salt
8  oz. mature spinach
1½ tsp. Diamond Crystal or 1 tsp. Morton kosher salt, plus more
 1 lb. lasagna noodles
2 medium zucchini, thinly sliced about ¼” thick on a mandoline
2 cups fresh ricotta
¾ cup whole milk
½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
Pinch of ground nutmeg
 4 oz. Parmesan, finely grated, plus more for serving
 1 8-oz. package shredded low-moisture mozzarella
Basil leaves (for serving)
best vegetarian dinner recipes
best vegetarian dinner recipes



Heat oil in a 10″ ovenproof skillet over medium. Cook onion, garlic, and cumin, stirring occasionally, until onion is beginning to brown and soften, about 5 minutes. Add both cans of crushed tomatoes, basil leaves, red pepper flakes, and salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until sauce is slightly thickened and flavors have melded, about 10 minutes. Stir in ½ cup water, then remove from heat.


Cook spinach in a medium pot of boiling salted water until wilted, about 30 seconds. Drain and transfer to a large bowl of ice water. Let sit until cool enough to handle. Drain and ring out excess moisture from spinach with your hands. Separate spinach and set aside.

Preheat oven to 425°. Cook noodles in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally and separating noodles as needed to keep from sticking, until just starting to soften and bend but still firm in the center; about 5 minutes. (They should be firmer than you think they should be, but this will create al dente lasagna layers instead of gummy ones.) Transfer noodles to a large bowl of cold water and let cool. Drain noodles and stack flat on a rimmed baking sheet, separating layers with sheets of parchment or wax paper.

Place zucchini in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet lined with paper towels and salt generously on both sides. Let sit 15 minutes to allow excess moisture to drain.


Process ricotta and milk in a food processor until smooth. (It should be whipped and a bit airy). Add pepper, nutmeg, 1½ tsp. Diamond Crystal or 1 tsp. Morton kosher salt, and 4 oz. Parmesan and process 10 seconds. Transfer to a medium bowl and fold in reserved spinach with a rubber spatula.

Using a ladle, transfer all but 1 cup sauce to a medium bowl, (there should be just a thin even layer of sauce left behind).

Take a lasagna sheet and place 1–2 slices of zucchini in the center. Scoop 2 (heaping) Tbsp. ricotta mixture on top and spread evenly over noodle. Sprinkle 1 Tbsp. mozzarella on top. Carefully roll up lasagna and sit vertically in skillet with tomato sauce. Repeat with remaining lasagna sheets, zucchini, ricotta mixture, and mozzarella.

Evenly ladle sauce in bowl over rolled pasta, then sprinkle more Parmesan over. Bake lasagna until sauce is bubbling gently around the edges and tops of lasagna rolls are browned and crisp, 35–40 minutes. Remove from oven and top with more basil to serve.


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