Chef cooking up a magical vegan dinner

Cook a Great, Big Vegan Dinner |

When it comes to big family get-togethers and celebrations, there’s usually a massive spread for everyone to tuck into. If you’re vegan, however, you often can’t eat any of it. You’re left with a plate of roast potatoes and veg, which – let’s face it – isn’t all that exciting. Plus, every single dessert is off the menu, too.

So, what’s a vegan to do? Give up?

No fear!

Whether you’re cooking for yourself or catering for a vegan who’ll be sharing a large meal with you, we can help. You can make a vegan dinner that’s just as hearty and satisfying as everyone else’s. Here we’ve provided recipes for a sumptuous vegan dinner, including a starter, main and dessert. Enjoy!


Starters for a Vegan Dinner


While everyone else is nibbling on canapes, vegans can feel a little left out. But no more! Here are two perfect starters for a wonderful vegan dinner.

Spiced Carrot and Coriander Soup

Ingredients

  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp crushed chilli
  • 1 tbsp olive or vegetable oil
  • 2 tbsp fresh coriander, chopped
  • Black pepper

Method

On medium, fry 1 medium chopped onion, 2 chopped cloves of garlic, a teaspoon of cumin and half a teaspoon crushed chilli in 1tbsp of olive or vegetable oil. Next, add 1 and a quarter litre of stock and 500g of peeled and chopped carrots. Bring to the boil then simmer for 15 minutes. Then transfer the mix to a blender and whizz until totally smooth. Stir in 2 tbsp of chopped fresh coriander and serve with a twist black pepper on top. Best eaten with warm crusty bread.


Sweet Potato Patties

Ingredients

  • 600g medium sweet potatoes, grated
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh coriander, chopped
  • 1 tbsp olive or vegetable oil
  • 4 tbsp of self-raising flour
  • ½ tsp ginger seasoning
  • Salt

Method

Peel and grate three medium-sized sweet potatoes (600g total), then rinse with cold water until water runs clear. Squeeze the gratings dry, then mix with onion (1 medium, chopped), garlic (3 cloves, chopped), salt to taste, 1 tbsp of coriander, 1 tbsp of oil, 4 tbsp of self-raising flour and half a tbsp ginger seasoning to taste.

Transfer the mix into an oiled frying pan on a high heat, and pat into a flat patty shape. Cook for around 5 minutes on one side, then 3 on the other, or until nicely browned. Best eaten with as much chilli sauce as you can stand!


Main Courses for a Vegan Dinner


Now for the main event!

Below are two main meals to make a vegan dinner truly special. Pair them with roast potatoes (make sure they’re not cooked in fat), carrots, brussels sprouts, cabbage, peas, vegan gravy and whatever else you think makes your vegan dinner complete.

Stuffed Pumpkin

Ingredients

  • 2 pumpkins
  • Vegetable or olive oil
  • Filling (See below for options) 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tbsp seasoning mix
  • Salt and pepper

Method

The possibilities for a stuffed pumpkin are endless! First, you’ll need to cut off the head of the pumpkin and scoop out the seeds. Rub the pumpkin with vegetable or olive oil, add salt and pepper to taste, and roast in the oven for 45 minutes at 170 degrees.

Then prepare your filling. This could include any combination of:

  • Wild rice
  • Walnuts
  • Cranberries
  • Fennel
  • Bramley apple
  • Pecans
  • Kidney beans
  • Spinach
  • Mushrooms
  • And more!

To make two stuffed pumpkins, cook your chosen fillings up like so: First, on a medium heat, fry 2 chopped medium onions, 5 cloves chopped garlic and a tbsp of seasoning mix of your choice (chicken seasoning is a great one to use, and yes, it is vegan!). When they’re soft, add your cooked ingredients to the pan, and fry for a couple of minutes. Next, place the mix in your hollowed-out pumpkin. Roast in the oven for a further 15 minutes at 170, then it’s all ready to serve for a truly hearty vegan dinner.


Sun-Dried Tomato and Pesto Muffins

Ingredients

  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped or minced
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 tbsp pesto
  • ½ cup vegan cream cheese
  • 180ml water
  • 1 tsp vinegar
  • Handful sundried tomatoes, finely chopped
  • ½ cup polenta
  • ½ cup gluten-free flour
  • ½ cup chickpea flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • Salt and pepper

Method

These savoury muffins are filling and oh-so-flavourful. To make, fry 1 small diced onion and 3 cloves of chopped or minced garlic in 3 tbsp of olive oil on a medium heat, then add 3 tbsp of pesto (make sure it’s vegan), half a cup of vegan cream cheese, 180ml of water, and a teaspoon of vinegar. Chop up a handful of sundried tomatoes into tiny pieces and add to the mix.

Next add half a cup polenta, half a cup gluten-free flour of your choice, half a cup chickpea flour, plus 2 teaspoons of baking powder, and salt and pepper to taste. Mix well, then transfer the mixture to muffin tins. Bake for around 20 minutes at 200.


Dessert for a Vegan Dinner


No celebratory dinner is complete without something sweet at the end, even if you feel you’ll never fit into your trousers again!

Vegan Black Forest Trifle

Ingredients

  • 500ml vegan custard
  • 100g dark chocolate pieces
  • 400g vegan chocolate brownies
  • 2 jars of cherries, drained
  • 300g vegan double cream
  • 200ml vegan crème fraiche
  • 25g icing sugar

Method

This needs plenty of substitutions, so plan well in advance if this is to be the dessert to round off your vegan dinner.

First, mix 500ml of vegan custard together with 100g of dark chocolate pieces in a pan, and heat until they’re mixed together. Then let this mixture cool while covered with cling film. Next, use 400g of vegan chocolate brownies to line the bottom of a trifle bowl. Drain two jars of cherries and pour them over the brownies. Cover these with the chocolate custard, then put in the fridge for a while. Then whip together 300g vegan double cream with 200ml vegan crème fraiche and 25g icing sugar. This goes on top of the chocolate custard to complete this delectable trifle!

With all these delicious recipes, we hope we’ve now convinced you that a vegan dinner is far from boring. Vegans can enjoy rich, sumptuous foods as well.

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