Vegetarian recipes don’t have to be bland and boring. Veggie cakes are neither and they are a reader favorite! Whether you want to lean in to a vegetarian diet, or you are trying to eat a little less meat, you’ll find recipes here that are hearty and delicious.
Many of the recipes here are vegan or vegan-adaptable and all of them are simple, easy meals that are perfect for weeknight cooking.
If you are new to vegetarian cooking, this is the perfect time to give it a try. Produce will be at its peak and that is the best time to try something new. Stock up and try a few new vegetarian recipes for dinner.
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Simple vegetarian recipes for beginners
There isn’t just one type of vegetarian. Some vegetarians eat dairy, some eat eggs and many eat both. No matter what you include in your vegetarian diet, these recipes are easily adapted to suit your preferences.
A vegetarian diet is mostly plant-based, with the addition of plenty of grains, pulses, legumes and other whole foods.
Mediterranean orzo salad – this flavorful orzo salad is my summer “go – to”. Like my Mediterranean couscous salad, it is loaded with fresh veggies and herbs. It makes an excellent lunch for the work week and it is great for packing up and taking on a picnic.
Mango lime quinoa – Another summertime favorite, this salad is light and refreshing. It is also vegan, and full of protein. If you love this versatile seed like we do, try this Mediterranean quinoa salad.
Heirloom tomato tart recipe with goat cheese – This showstopper is actually much easier than it looks. A buttery crust is filled with creamy goat cheese and caramelized onions before topping with sliced heirloom tomatoes. Then it is topped with parmesan and baked in a 9 inch tart pan. If you find yourself with an excess of beautiful, ripe tomatoes, make this easy heirloom tomato bruschetta.
Spinach artichoke pasta salad – This easy pasta recipe is dressed with a light, lemony vinaigrette and topped with fat curls of shaved parmesan. For another light vegetable dish, serve this Israeli salad on the side.
Summer grain salad is full of fresh vegetables. Whole grains provide a satisfying, chewy texture to this salad, while the vegetables give it great crunch. Herbs and red wine vinaigrette make this salad super flavorful. I like to serve this with a slice of Catalán tomato bread.
Caprese eggplant stacks are irresistible. Roasted eggplant brushed with flavorful pesto, gooey, melted fresh mozzarella and perfectly ripe summer tomatoes. Eggplant lovers might also like my miso glazed eggplant and eggplant caponata recipes.
Roasted vegetable pasta is an easy weeknight meal that comes together in about 40 minutes. This dish is similar to a ratatouille recipe mixed with pasta and a few more veggies to bulk it up. It can be served warm or room temperature. But, I’ve eaten this pasta cold (straight from the fridge), and it’s still delicious.
Stuffed tomatoes are a great way to use ripe, summer tomatoes. Stuffed with orzo, kalamata olives and feta cheese, they are a great way to use up tomatoes from the garden. Serve them with this nectarine spinach salad for a delicious summer supper.
White beans with arugula and sun-dried tomatoes – this tasty dish is ready in five minutes, making it perfect for weeknight cooking. Serve it as a side or as a main. Add a little broth and a grain to make a comforting, hearty dinner.
Chickpea curry – This dish is actually vegan and so full of flavor. This one pot meal is cooked in a Dutch oven. Ready in 45 minutes, most of the cooking time is hands-off, leaving you to go about your day.
Baked eggs are the perfect brunch item. Put those baked eggs inside mini bell pepper cups and now it’s an adorable brunch item perfect for serving on special occasions. For more vegetarian recipes with eggs, check out tortilla española and heirloom eggs with mushrooms.
Crispy tofu noodle bowl – This recipe is also vegan! It is so full of flavor and it is one of my all-time favorites. This meal has crunch from the peanuts, chewiness from the noodles and crispy cubes of tofu. For another delicious bowl, swap out noodles for this Buddha bowl with potatoes. Noodle lovers, check out this recipe for soba noodles with stir-fried vegetables.
Curried cauliflower – Oven roasted cauliflower with curry powder and golden raisins is absolutely addicting. It is one of the most requested dishes in this house.
Butternut squash risotto – This is comfort food on every conceivable level. On days when you need a bit of a mental break, I wholeheartedly recommend making risotto. A straight-sided sauté pan is the perfect pan for making risotto.
Spiralized beet and carrot salad – Spiralized beets, apples and carrots on a bed on baby spinach, lightly dressed with a tangy vinaigrette. A sprinkle of roasted pepitas add crunch and a bit of crumbled feta for tangy goodness. Easily make vegetable noodles with a good, sturdy spiralizer.
Crispy sweet potato cakes – This recipe makes 2 dozen, so it is perfect for making ahead or freezing. Using a food processor to shred the sweet potatoes makes it a snap. They are terrific anytime, even for breakfast.
Pumpkin tacos – These vegan tacos are also gluten-free. I added charred sweet corn and black beans to the tacos, plus a sprinkle of pepitas, or pumpkin seeds, and a bit of salsa. Try some pickled banana peppers on them. Not at all traditional, but so good!
Vegetarian stuffed acorn squash – Filled with quinoa, spinach, cranberries and pecans, this stuffed squash is also gluten-free. This recipe is a staple in the fall and I love serving it at Thanksgiving.
Superfood salad with pomegranate – This nutrient-dense salad is gluten-free and can be easily veganized by omitting the goat cheese. For another nutrient-dense meal, try these superfood veggie cakes. Use up your pomegranate arils to make this delicious citrus pomegranate salsa.
Stuffed hubbard squash recipe – Beautiful Hubbard squash filled with wild rice, baby kale and golden raisins is healthy and filling. It is the perfect autumnal dinner.
Vegetarian soup recipes
Soup recipes are one of the easiest ways to incorporate more vegetarian recipes into your diet.
Almost all of my soup recipes are either vegetarian or vegan, and the ones that aren’t can be easily modified.
Autumn minestrone soup incorporates a few fall vegetables with the end of summer veggies to make a delicious soup. I swapped out the pasta for Italian farro in this minestrone to give it a lovely texture. You can also find a recipe for classic minestrone soup from scratch if you prefer the pasta. I like to serve this soup with an open-faced sandwich called a tartine.
This easy lentil soup recipe is a staple around here, especially in the fall. Lentil soup is a classic for a reason. It is an easy soup to make, it requires a bit of chopping and not much else.
Watermelon gazpacho – Made with fresh watermelon, juicy tomatoes, crisp cucumbers and bell peppers, it has just a bit zing from a jalapeño pepper. This soup improves overnight, so making it the day before is even better.
Winter vegetable soup – This hearty, vegan soup is loaded with root vegetables. The golden, turmeric broth turns this soup the color of sunshine. Perfect for when you’re under the weather.
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