It is possible to prepare original and delicious vegan main courses. Although they are dishes without meat and without derivatives of animal origin, the ideas can be endless. Preparing them in the kitchen is simple and fun, so creativity can be endless. Plus, these simple protein recipes are truly within everyone's reach.
You can prepare burgers, balls, croquettes of any shape, using vegetables and legumes. Choose a fresh salad for the summer, or a vegetable bhuna for the cooler days. Experiment with new recipes from all the cuisines of the world. From the Asian one, to the Mexican one to the Greek one, they are full of very tasty and 100% vegan dishes.
1. Lentil burger
Lentil burgers are a veggie variant of the classic meat burgers; they are light, tasty and very nutritious, as they are rich in protein. They are the ideal preparation for those who follow a vegan or vegetarian diet, for those who are intolerant to gluten or simply for those who want to enjoy a healthy and tasty second course. Preparing them is really simple, plus everyone will like it, adults and children.
Wash and peel the carrot, prepare the onion and parsley. Place everything in the stand mixer and blend. Rinse the lentils and pour everything into the pan with the oil. Add some vegetable broth and cook for 30 minutes, or until the water has completely evaporated. Blend the lentils with the blender and make the burgers with the help of an 8 cm diameter pastry cutter. Cook them in a pan with very little oil until golden brown.
2. Pumpkin balls without eggs
Pumpkin balls without eggs are a vegan and tasty second dish, based on pumpkin. Soft inside and crunchy outside, thanks to a light breading. We have prepared them without eggs or cheese in the filling and the dough is prepared with corn flour, so as to make them appreciated even by those who are intolerant or on a diet. We also added chickpeas and chives, but you can also make the pumpkin balls only with oil, salt, and rosemary.
Clean the pumpkin and remove the peel and seeds. Cut it into cubes and steam it for a few minutes. Transfer the pumpkin to a bowl as soon as it is soft and add the rest of the ingredients, leaving the breadcrumbs aside. Blend well until the mixture is smooth and creamy and add the grated bread, which will give structure to the dough. Mix well and form the balls; roll them in corn flour and arrange them on a sheet of parchment paper. Oil them on the surface and bake at 350 degrees F for about 20 minutes. Serve the pumpkin balls while still hot.
3. Vegan omelette without eggs
The vegan omelette without eggs is an ideal second course for those who do not eat animal derivatives and follow a vegan diet. For its preparation you will need chickpea flour, salt and water, with the addition of vegetables, spices and ingredients of your choice, to make it richer and tastier. It can be cooked in a pan or baked in the oven, just like the regular omelette and it is suitable for a casual dinner or an appetizer.
Pour the chickpea flour, salt and pepper into a bowl. Gradually add the water and mix with a whisk, so as to obtain a mixture without lumps, similar to a batter. Once ready, cover it with a cotton cloth and let it rest for at least 2 hours. Now add the grated carrot and zucchini. Heat the oil in a pan and cook the vegan omelette for about ten minutes before turning it; continue cooking for 10 minutes on the other side as well.
4. Chickpea salad
The chickpea salad is a perfect dish for hot days, a way to eat legumes even in summer with a fresh and tasty recipe, excellent as a main course for lunch or dinner. We dressed our cold chickpea salad with cherry tomatoes, olives, onion and basil, flavored with lemon juice, but you can dress it as you like, choosing the vegan ingredients you prefer. It can also be prepared the day before and stored in the refrigerator .
Rinse the chickpeas under running water. Cut the cherry tomatoes into small pieces, add the salt, mix and leave to flavor. Slice the spring onion, chop the basil and put everything in a large bowl together with the olives and cherry tomatoes. Pour the lemon juice over the chickpeas, mix and combine all the ingredients, add a sprinkling of pepper and mix well. Let the chickpea salad rest for a quarter of an hour at room temperature. Garnish with a basil leaf and serve. If you like this recipe, you can also try the chickpea tuna salad.
5. Chana masala
Chana masala is a very popular vegetarian dish throughout South Asia, especially India and Pakistan; it comes from the Punjab region, on the border between the two countries. It is a kind of stewed chickpea soup, made with onions, tomatoes and various spices. An extremely fragrant, spicy and appetizing recipe to be consumed with white basmati rice or Indian bread, such as Naan. The recipe includes a small dose of butter which, in the vegan version, can easily be replaced with margarine.
Wash the chickpeas well, season with salt and cook them in a saucepan. When it comes to a boil, cook for 5-10 minutes. Peel and slice the onions and green chillies, collect them in a pan. Grate fresh ginger, butter and brown. Add the spices, the minced garlic and mix again. Wash and clean the tomatoes, cut them into cubes and add them to the pan. Add the drained chickpeas along with a few more ladles of water. Reduce the sauce, season with a squeeze of lemon juice and chopped coriander.
6. Pureed soup of Jerusalem artichoke
The Jerusalem artichoke pureed soup is a light and delicate vegan main course, very easy to prepare, perfect for those who follow a healthy and balanced diet without sacrificing taste. Jerusalem artichoke is a tuber originating from North America, still little known and used in our recipes, an ingredient rich in fiber and protein and at the same time low in calories.
Peel and cut the potatoes. Brown a chopped shallot; add the potatoes, Jerusalem artichoke and vegetable broth to almost completely cover the vegetables, add a pinch of salt and pepper and cook over low heat for 20 minutes. Blend the vegetables with an immersion blender until you get a creamy mixture. Cut two slices of stale bread into cubes, arrange them on a dripping pan, sprinkle them with a drizzle of oil and add chopped herbs. Bake in a preheated oven for 15 minutes.
7. Stuffed turnip cabbage
Turnip cabbage stuffed with mushrooms, onion and carrots is a delicious vegan dish and really easy to prepare. A simple filling of only vegetables in a small casket of lightly blanched turnip cabbage, for a main course also excellent as an appetizer. It's a great idea if you want to experiment with new recipes or if you simply don't know how to best use cabbage, which is not always easy to combine in recipes.
Clean the turnip cabbage, remove the outer leaves and blanch them for 15 minutes. Cut the top cap and get the pulp. Clean the mushrooms, remove the stem and cut them finely, also cut the carrots and onion. In a large saucepan, heat a drizzle of oil with the onion, then the carrots and finally the mushrooms and half of the turnip cabbage pulp. Stuff the turnip cabbage with the vegetables, add the chopped parsley on the surface and arrange them on a dripping pan covered with a sheet of parchment paper.
8. Cauliflower tacos
The cauliflower tacos with barbecue sauce are a simple and delicious vegan recipe. Easy to make, these tacos can also become an appetizer or finger food, just create smaller tacos. Cauliflower is rich in nutrients and very versatile, thanks to its delicate taste it can be combined with many different condiments and spices. If you prefer a spicier taste, you can replace the barbecue sauce with Mexican sauce. Those who prefer a more delicate and fresh taste can combine tacos with a tzatziki sauce.
Brown the unpeeled garlic with a drizzle of oil. Add the cauliflower, stirring often. In a bowl, combine the barbecue sauce with the hot sauce. Add the sauces to the cooked cauliflower, stir to coat everything thoroughly and turn off the heat immediately. Heat the tacos in a non-stick pan. Meanwhile, cut the avocado into cubes and chop a little parsley. Stuff the tacos with the cooked cauliflower, add the diced avocado, parsley and more to taste.
9. Tofu croquettes
Tofu croquettes can be enjoyed as an appetizer or main course, but they are also ideal as a nice finger food. A light vegan dish without the addition of eggs or cheeses, but very tasty, a soft interior and crunchy breading with chickpea cream and breadcrumbs. A delicious dish to accompany with a fresh salad, grilled vegetables and sauces to taste.
Mix the chickpea flour with the water with the help of a whisk. Add two tablespoons of soy sauce, basil and chives. Cut the tofu into cubes and pass them in the chickpea batter, then bread them in the breadcrumbs trying to make it stick well on all sides. Brown the tofu croquettes in a pan with seed oil. Let cook on medium heat 5 minutes per side or in any case until golden brown.
10. Tomato fritters
Tomato fritters are a vegan recipe typical of Greek cuisine, specifically the island of Santorini; a delicious dish, also perfect as an appetizer or simple side dish. Domatokeftedes are very simple to prepare, they do not need eggs or yeast but only tomatoes, onion and mint. Crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, tomato fritters can also be baked in the oven if you prefer a lighter dish. Fry them in plenty of seed oil to make them crunchy and golden.
Clean the tomatoes, remove the stalk and cut them into cubes after removing the internal seeds. Clean the mint and chop it up, then finely chop the onion. Put the ingredients into a bowl, add the flour, a pinch of salt and pepper and mix with your hands until you get a homogeneous mixture. Shape into balls with your hands and cook them in plenty of seed oil for 5 minutes per side.