35 Easy Vegan Recipes For Beginners (Family-Friendly)

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by Alena Schowalter
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Just started a plant-based diet? Try these 30+ easy vegan recipes for beginners full of family-friendly meals made from everyday ingredients.

Whether you just went vegan or are looking for family-friendly dinner ideas, this hand-selected list of recipes will be all you need!

From pasta to bowls, pizza, cozy stews, and quick stir-fries: these dinner ideas feature all our favorite dishes.

Check out our 30-minute meals, lazy vegan recipes, cheap vegan meals, and kid-friendly recipes next, and enjoy this list!

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Best Vegan Recipes For Beginners

Thai Vegetable Stir Fry
There are days when you need a comforting and nutritious dinner on the table in less than 30 minutes. That’s what Thai vegetable stir-fries are for! Colorful and crispy veggies meet deep flavor from the easy stir fry sauce, rounded up with some protein-rich tofu and freshly cooked rice.
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back pan on a chopping board with freshly cooked pumpkin stir fried vegetables
Easy Vegan Pesto Pasta
This veggie-loaded vegan bean pesto pasta is bursting with flavor and really easy to make on a weekday! Smothered in creamy, protein-rich pesto sauce, this 30-minute dinner will have your family licking their plates.
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black bowl of homemade vegan pesto pasta with vegetables on a table
Red Lentil Carrot Soup
Some days, all you need is a lot of hot, fragrant and cozy plant-based soup! This one-pot recipe features simple staples from grounding root veggies to protein-packed legumes, fresh greens and delicious pantry spices.
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white table with two bowls of anti-inflammatory soup containing red lentils, spinach, carrot and vegetable broth
Quick Vegan Bean Burritos
Mexican comfort food is truly crowd-pleasing and so easy to make vegan! These satisfying stuffed bean burritos are done in under 15 minutes if you use store-bought tortillas and can easily be customized.
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woman with white shirt holding two bean burritos filled with avocado and tomato
Tofu Kale Power Bowl
Want to put some really healthy food on the table? Try this tofu kale power bowl with tahini dressing. Packed with nutrients and decently high in protein, it’s made with baked tofu, peas, sweet potatoes, kale, bell peppers, hemp seeds and a couple of delicious spices.
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Photo credit: sharonpalmer.com
two white bowls on a table with peas, carrots, tofu, kale and vegan sauce
African Peanut Stew
Rich and creamy from peanut butter and sweet with pumpkin, this healthy and hearty African peanut stew is a kid-friendly vegan dinner. This warming dish is ready in under 30 minutes, really delicious and features a handful of healthy veggies.
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Photo credit: www.mrsjoneskitchen.com
06 African peanut stew
Creamy Coconut Curry Soup
One pot and seasonal veggies are all it takes to make this cozy and fragrant soup! It's hearty enough to be a complete meal and works well for batch cooking. Try it this week!
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Photo credit: epicveganeats.com
creamy coconut soup
Chickpea Avocado Salad Sandwich
Do you like sandwiches? Try this easy mashed avocado and chickpea sandwich which is a vegan twist on a classic tuna salad sandwich. Lots of protein, texture and creaminess from the avocado between two slices of bread — yum! Only 8 ingredients needed.
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Photo credit: homecookedroots.com
07 Avocado Chickpea Salad Sandwich
Baked Vegan Mac and Cheese
Sure, you can have baked mac and cheese as a vegan! Macaroni pasta and a simple and healthy vegan cheese sauce made from everyday foods like carrot, onion, cashews and mustard are topped with crispy breadcrumbs and baked for 15 minutes. We love this tasty family-friendly casserole!
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Photo credit: jessicainthekitchen.com
08 Baked Vegan Mac and Cheese
Vegan Chili Sin Carne
Compared to chili con carne (meaning, with meat), our healthy and savory vegan bean chili is low in fat and high in fiber, much more budget-friendly and just as delicious! Featuring finely chopped veggies and lots of savory spices, it is super easy to make in about 30 minutes and tastes great on its own, with rice, tortilla chips or baked potatoes.
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Top view of woman holding a bowl of vegan bean chili, sliced avocado and fresh herbs
Creamy Vegan Mushroom Risotto
This vegan one-pot dinner is starchy, creamy and really easy to make! It’s healthy comfort food made with leek, mushrooms, peas and soy milk alongside some flavorful spices. Try this gluten-free family-friendly dinner!
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bowl of vegan risotto with mushroom, peas and a fork standing next to a linen on a marble surface
One-Pot Coconut Potato Curry
Yup, another one-pot meal — because these are just the best if you’re a vegan beginner cook. Perfect for worknights, this fragrant mouthwatering pot of steaming goodness is made with regular potatoes, chickpeas, veggies, curry paste and coconut milk. Keep any leftovers in the fridge for a quick meal the next day!
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Closeup of woman in grey shirt holding bowl with finished vegan curry in front of her
Vegan Buffalo Cauliflower Tacos
Tacos are some of the best vegan beginner recipes because they are easy to make and so versatile! This version features crispy baked buffalo cauliflower, crunchy chickpeas, fresh salsa, avocado and some leafy greens. Top with vegan ranch or any other sauce of your choice and enjoy within just 30 minutes!
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five vegan buffalo cauliflower tacos on a white plate
Vegan White Sauce Pasta
If you’re in need of a simple yet scrumptious plant-based dinner idea, this colorful vegan pasta with white sauce is likely to become your go-to recipe. Cook any pasta of your choice while sautéing your favorite veggies (use frozen for more convenience) and whisking a simple low-fat vegan white sauce. Combine, garnish and serve this family-friendly dish.
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white table with a large black pan containing colorful vegetables, pasta and vegan white sauce
Sweet Potato Quinoa Salad
Do you want to prepare a larger batch of food to eat over a few days? That’s what vegan grain salads are for! This sweet potato quinoa salad is a light, healthy and tasty dish with only a few different components and a simple 3-ingredient dressing. It’s decently high in protein, customizable and requires only 15 minutes of prep time.
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Photo credit: itsnotcomplicatedrecipes.com
15 Sweet Potato Quinoa Salad
Easy Spicy Chickpea Burgers
These flavor-packed chickpea burgers are easy to make with wholesome tasty ingredients! Meat eaters and vegans alike love them, and after only 13 minutes of cooking, you can assemble the protein-packed patties on burger rolls with avocado, tomato, lettuce and vegan mayo.
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Photo credit: boulderlocavore.com
16 chickpea burgers
Quick Vegan Mongolian Beef
This easy vegan Mongolian beef recipe can be thrown together in a flash and is made either with tofu or seitan! It’s a simple stir-fried dish with a thick, mild and sweet sauce that can be served over rice and steamed veggies. Any leftovers keep well for 4 days!
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Photo credit: forkfulofplants.com
17 Mongolian Beef
Easy Creamy Tomato Dal
If you like Indian spices, try this easy creamy tomato dal! Made with red lentils and coconut milk for extra creaminess, this recipe offers a delicious tomato twist and lots of flavorful spices. Serve with roti or flatbread!
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Photo credit: theveganlarder.com
18 Creamy Tomato Daal
Fast Vegan Spaghetti Carbonara
In a hurry? Make this super fast spaghetti carbonara! It’s the perfect midweek dinner, budget-friendly and comforting. Nobody will notice it’s totally free from animal products and you can easily make this dish gluten-free.
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Photo credit: veeatcookbake.com
19 easy vegan carbonara
Simple Vegan Orzo Soup
This vegan orzo soup incorporates seasonal veggies into a flavorful, hearty broth that all comes together in less than an hour and in just one pot. It’s a family-friendly nutritious dinner idea that can be made with a whole array of vegetables and works really well for batch-cooking.
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Photo credit: marleysmenu.com
19.5 Vegan Orzo Soup
Falafel with Vegan Tzatziki Sauce
These baked falafel aren’t just made with protein-packed chickpeas but also carrots and white potatoes! Especially if you’re not used to eating lots of beans, this recipe will be perfect for you as a way to ease in. Serve the falafel in pita bread with fresh veggies and a vegan tzatziki sauce!
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Photo credit: prettydeliciouslife.com
20 falafel vegan tzaziki
Roasted Chickpea and Cauliflower Salad
Speaking of Middle Eastern food: This spicy and zesty chickpea and cauliflower salad is easy to make and ultra-versatile. Enjoy it warm or cold, as is or in a pita. It can be served with some hummus for an extra creamy touch and even more protein!
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Photo credit: foodnouveau.com
21 Spicy Roasted Chickpea and Cauliflower Salad
Green Curry Fried Rice
I don’t know about you, but some easy vegan fried rice is one of our go-to simple dinner recipes! You can make it with any of your favorite vegetables, curry paste and pre-cooked rice in less than 30 minutes! Add some tofu or peas for more protein if you like.
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Photo credit: www.myplantifulcooking.com
22 green curry fried rice
Vegan Lentil Meatballs
Flavorful, protein-packed and so scrumptious — lentil meatballs in marinara sauce are one of the best vegan beginner recipes for the whole family! Infused with Italian herbs and made with only 7 basic ingredients, they are best served with spaghetti for a comforting dinner.
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Photo credit: thebananadiaries.com
23 vegan lentil meatballs
Orange Tofu Bowl
This orange tofu has a delicious orange juice glaze and is ready in 30 minutes no matter which way you cook it! Flavored with garlic, onion, paprika, ginger, soy sauce and rice vinegar, it has a deep flavor and tastes great in a bowl with bell peppers, broccoli and rice.
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Photo credit: www.hellospoonful.com
24 orange tofu bowl
Red Lentil Pasta with Greens
Have you ever tried pasta made from legumes? It’s an easy way to include more plant-based protein into your diet! This simple vegan beginner recipe is made with red lentil pasta, sautéed garlicky lemon kale and a vegan walnut “cheese” topping. Try this quick, nutritious and satisfying dinner!
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Photo credit: www.runningtothekitchen.com
25 red lentil pasta
Quick Vegan Pizza
Whenever you don’t feel like cooking and are just tired, make this gluten-free vegan pizza within minutes! It’s easy to prepare, highly customizable, wholesome and veggie-loaded. This does mean that you need to have a pre-made pizza crust on hand which you can load with your favorite toppings and vegan cheese sauce before popping it in the oven for around 20 minutes.
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Photo credit: eatplant-based.com
26 Vegan Pizza
Tuscan Butter Bean Ragout
This vegan Tuscane butter bean ragout is the perfect cozy and easy vegan beginner-friendly meal! Use up any scrap veggies in the fridge, add some canned beans and tomatoes plus a handful of spices and cook for 20 minutes, then serve with some crusty bread, pasta or enjoy on its own.
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Photo credit: zardyplants.com
27 Vegan Tuscan Butter Bean Ragout
Vegan Yaki Udon Noodles
If you’re unfamiliar with this dish, Yaki udon noodles are Japanese fried noodles with vegetables and a whole lot of flavor! This easy dinner comes together in a hurry but you wouldn’t know it from the taste and layers of rich flavor. Ready to enjoy in 20 minutes, you can add some tofu or mock chicken for added protein!
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Photo credit: thevegconnection.com
28 Yaki Udon
Watermelon Poke Bowl
Try this vegan twist on poke bowls with some added watermelon for an easy and refreshing plant-based lunch or dinner! While poke usually contains raw fish, you can create a similar flavor by using marinated watermelon which you then serve alongside rice, fruit and chopped vegetables. Top with a spicy mayo dressing and enjoy in under 30 minutes total!
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Photo credit: thishealthytable.com
29 watermelon poke bowl
Vegan Broccoli Cheese Soup
Easy vegan comfort food at its best! This creamy broccoli cheese soup takes only half an hour from start to finish and features grated carrot, cashews, nutritional yeast and a handful of spices. Any leftovers can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 days and reheated at your convenience!
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Photo credit: veganinthefreezer.com
30 vegan broccoli cheese soup
Easy Lentil Shepherd’s Pie
This hearty meatless vegan beginner meal is made in less than 30 minutes and with 10 main ingredients. Protein-packed lentils, veggies and creamy mashed potatoes offer delicious layers of comfort food that’s not just healthy but also budget-friendly!
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Photo credit: strengthandsunshine.com
31 Easy Vegan Shepherds Pie
One-Pot Red Lentil Bolognese
Hearty, wholesome and full of flavor, this lentil spaghetti bolognese is a firm favorite for a healthy and satisfying weeknight dinner with the family. Made with onion, garlic, bay leaves, Italian herbs and red wine, this classic comfort meal is a true hit with vegans and non-vegans alike!
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Photo credit: www.bytheforkful.com
32 Lentil Spaghetti Bolognese
Vegan Ramen with Vegetables
Looking for a lighter vegan dinner idea? This vegetable ramen soup is low in calories but big on flavor! Featuring lots of delicious veggies like broccoli, green peas, carrots and bok choy alongside tasty noodles, this simple vegan recipe is a great plant-based dinner to try.
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Photo credit: www.marathonsandmotivation.com
33 Ramen with Vegetables
Super Easy Tahini Pasta
This mouthwatering creamy vegan tahini pasta dish is so quick and easy to make! It’s creamy, nutty, full of flavor and ready to enjoy in 20 minutes. Add some onion flakes or vegan bacon for some extra crunch and flavor if you like!
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Photo credit: www.splashoftaste.com
34 tahini pasta

More Easy Vegan Recipes

If you liked these easy vegan recipes for beginners, find lots of more easy plant-based recipes in the following popular articles!

Did you try any of our hand-selected easy vegan recipes for beginners? Be sure to let us know in the comments below and rate the burrito bowl if you made it! Don’t forget to Pin this article here.

30+ Easy Vegan Beginner Recipes (Lunch & Dinner)

by Alena Schowalter
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Try these delicious vegan beginner recipes that are perfect to feed your whole family (vegan or not!). Most of these meals are put together in 30 minutes or less, just like this tasty vegan burrito bowl which features rice, homemade refried beans, fresh veggies and delicious toppings! It’s an exclusive recipe from our popular Live Lightly eBook which you can find here.
Serves 2

Ingredients

Tasty Burrito Bowl

  • ½ cup rice 90 g, dry
  • 2 cups pinto beans 340 g, canned & drained
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp oregano dry
  • ¼ tsp cayenne
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 3 cups lettuce 160 g, chopped
  • 2 medium tomatoes chopped
  • 3 green onions thinly sliced
  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro 4 g, chopped
  • 1 cup fresh salsa
  • Tortilla chips to serve
  • Cashew sour cream to serve

Instructions

  • Cook rice according to package instructions.
  • Make refried beans by placing the cooked pinto beans into a small saucepan and add water until they are almost covered. Cook over medium heat for 5 minutes, then drain the beans.
  • Add cumin, oregano, cayenne, salt and pepper, then puree with an immersion blender.
  • Once the rice is cooked and your veggies prepared, assemble the easy vegan burrito bowls!
  • Divide rice between two serving bowls, top with lettuce, tomatoes, green onions, cilantro, salsa and refried beans.
  • Serve with tortilla chips, cashew sour cream and anything else you like!

Notes

  • If you can find vegan refried beans at the store, this recipe will be even easier and quicker to make!
  • You can also add bell pepper to this burrito bowl and top it with sliced avocado.
  • This recipe is super meal prep-friendly since you can pre-cook the rice and refried beans, then just assemble your bowl in a heartbeat.
  • Nutrition information has automatically been calculated without tortilla chips or vegan sour cream.
  • Find 30+ more easy vegan beginner recipes in the article above!
Course: Beginner Recipes
Cuisine: American
Nutrition Facts
30+ Easy Vegan Beginner Recipes (Lunch & Dinner)
Amount per Serving
Calories
334
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
2
g
3
%
Polyunsaturated Fat
 
1
g
Sodium
 
1732
mg
75
%
Carbohydrates
 
66
g
22
%
Fiber
 
18
g
75
%
Sugar
 
12
g
13
%
Protein
 
17
g
34
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated automatically, their accuracy is not guaranteed.
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Hi, I'm Alena Schowalter — a Certified Vegan Nutritionist who has been a vegetarian since childhood and vegan since 2012. Together with my husband, I founded nutriciously in 2015 and have been guiding thousands of people through different transition stages toward a healthy plant-based diet. I enjoy discussions around vegan ethics, walks through nature, and creating new recipes. Read more about us here.

13 Comments

  1. Oh wow, I just noticed that you have training in Music Therapy! I am reading this, having nearly finished my day, at my job as a Music Therapist in a Special School in the UK! Thank you for your wonderful recipes, my husband and I have quite similar ones on rotation, though I have a naughty “cheesy” pasta one for when we’re feeling decadent!

    Reply
    • Hey Heather,
      what a lovely coincidence! My training dates back 9 years now and I never really worked in this field, unfortunately – I chose to go back to university to study Social Work because it’s so closely related. And now I’m running a plant-based website, haha! Funny how things go in life. But this music therapy training was very valuable for my personal life and development, for sure. Do you love your work?
      Glad you like our recipes, we really enjoy vegan mac and cheese (sauce made from potatoes, carrot, cashews, nutritional yeast) every once in a while, too :)
      Warm wishes,
      Alena

      Reply
  2. A great list of vegan recipes for beginners. I would like to add another recipes as sweet and salted corn, fried French beans and teriyaki mushrooms. The recipe takes only 20 minutes and won’t consume any time.

    Reply
  3. Great & easy ways to cook vegan recipes. As a traveler I always looking for easy way to cook hopefully I have got your ideas this will save my time also. Thanks for your valuable tips.

    Reply
  4. I’m starting my vegan journey this month! Very excited and this information just made me feel even more confident in my decision. I have a one year old and he has been drinking soy milk since after breastfeeding for two months. He had cow’s whole milk for a week after turning one and developed eczema so I switched him back to soy. That experience really opened my eyes to a plant based lifestyle for me and my baby. Thank you for your guidance and I can’t wait to try these mouth-watering meals!!

    Reply
  5. Delicious & lovely recipe idea. I’m so much pleased to find your article. I love this. I haven’t think I can make it at home so much easily. Thank you so much. God bless.

    Reply
  6. OMG, you are a lifesaver! After reading Dr. Greger’s, How Not to Die, and listening to his many video talks, I’ve been trying to move away from meat/dairy/seafood and it has been a real challenge. I’ve been cooking for more years than you have been alive, and I’ve always leaned towards whole foods and been careful about the amount of meat on my plate, but I can see now that that was not cautious enough. But revising decades of cooking techniques and food choices has been tough — and never more than when I’m hungry and I’ve not planned ahead. Now I have a blueprint! I cannot thank you enough.

    Reply
    • thanks so much for your feedback, we’re honored to have had such a positive impact on your life! kudos to you for changing your ways after 30+ years of cooking (apparently?) — please let us know if there’s anything in particular we can help you with :)

      Reply
  7. Looking for vegan beginner recipes on most of the websites. found most of the vegan recipes especially vegan ramen with vegetables recipe is my favourite among all of them. Defintely try most of the vegan recipes you mentioned

    Reply

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