You love animals, consider them friends, not food, and think a plant-based diet is the healthier way to go. Whatever your reason(s) for being a vegan, your meal can be just as well-rounded as the carnivores and omnivores.
We all know that for Easter, the eggs are plentiful and many meat-eaters enjoy lamb, ham, or a roast for their special meal, but what about for vegans? Here are some vegan and vegetarian inspired menu ideas for Easter dinner. From soups and salads to super delish side dishes with veggies galore, you won’t run out of healthy, meatless options.
Avoiding cheese? Try dipping your veggies, pita chips, and blue corn chips into some hummus, which is a great source of protein. Also, go for guacamole, salsa, or bean dip you can whip together in your blender. Sweet potato fries are always a yummy option. Bring on the veggies. Whether raw crudities or sautéed, broiled, or baked, don’t skimp on the vegetables.
VEGAN 3-BEAN DIP
3 cans beans (1 can each of cannellini, kidney and black beans)
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (for those who like spicy)
2 Tablespoons lemon or lime juice (freshly squeezed)
2 Tablespoons tahini paste
2 Tablespoons hot sauce (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste
Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth and creamy. Garnish with a sprig of cilantro. Serve with tortilla chips, blue corn chips, pita chips, and/or raw veggies like carrot sticks, celery sticks, grape or cherry tomatoes, broccoli, and cauliflower.
Recipe adapted from: veganinthefreezer.com/white-bean-dip/
LOTS OF SIDE DISH OPTIONS
So much to choose from! Try serving potatoes with garlic and rosemary; asparagus; broccolini with ginger, garlic and soy sauce; Brussels sprouts; cauliflower rice; spiralized zucchini or beets; root vegetable medley with carrots, turnips, parsnips, sweet potatoes, and beets; green beans and garlic; curried rice or couscous; tabbouleh; pea risotto; quinoa, buckwheat noodle salad or butternut squash soup. Try beans and tofu atop a salad, in a soup, in a wrap, or as a side dish.
VEGAN POTATO SALAD
Skipping the egg salad? Go for potato salad using vegan, plant-based mayo.
1.5 pounds red or Yukon potatoes
1 cup plant-based mayo
2 Tablespoons red wine or rice wine vinegar
1 Tablespoon yellow or Dijon mustard
¾ cup chopped celery
½ cup chopped carrots
½ cup yellow, white or red onion
1-2 chopped green onions to garnish
1 kosher dill pickle
Salt and pepper to taste
Cayenne pepper and red chili flakes (for fans of the spicy)
Boil or bake potatoes. Let cool, then chop along with other vegetables. Combine in a mixing bowl. Put sauce ingredients in a separate bowl, stir together, and add to vegetables. Add a few dashes of salt, pepper and/or cayenne pepper. Sprinkle with chopped green onions to garnish and serve. Can be refrigerated for 30 minutes before serving.
Recipe adapted from: thissavoryvegan.com/vegan-potato-salad/
ENTRÉE AND MAIN DISH OPTIONS
Some entrée ideas include pesto pasta with zucchini and yellow squash, veggie pizza, veggie pot pie, vegan lasagna, veggie chili, stuffed portabellas and bell peppers, tofu lettuce wraps or tacos with beans and rice.
HEALTHY VEGAN DESSERT OPTIONS
Wanting to stay sugar-free, but still enjoy a sweet treat? Gather a variety of fruits for a delicious fruit salad. Top with slivered almonds or coconut flakes, and garnish with a sprig of mint.
1 ¼ cups shredded coconut flakes
¼ cup finely ground, blanched almond flour
3 Tablespoons solid coconut oil
¼ cup pure maple syrup
½ teaspoon almond or vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line baking sheet with greased aluminum foil or parchment paper. Blend ingredients in a food processor until the thick, sticky mixture holds together. Use a cookie scoop to create balls, then place on a lined baking sheet. The balls will increase some in size when baking, so allow enough space in between. Bake for 13-15 minutes until slightly golden around the edges. Cool on a cooling rack about 30 minutes to 1 hour before enjoying!
Enjoy your meatless, dairy-free meal, and a Happy Vegan Easter!