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55 Plant-Based Recipes You’ll Crave

Think plant-based recipes are dull and boring? Think again! Here are some tasty recipes chock full of fruits, veggies, beans and whole grains.

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Grilled Cauliflower Wedges

This side is incredibly easy, yet is packed with flavor and looks like a dish from a five-star restaurant. The grill leaves the cauliflower cooked but crisp, and the red pepper flakes add bite. —Carmel Hall, San Francisco, California
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Roasted Pumpkin and Brussels Sprouts

While traveling to Taiwan, I had the pleasure of trying a unique vegetable dish that included fresh pumpkin. It inspired me to roast pumpkin with Brussels sprouts. —Pam Correll, Brockport, Pennsylvania

Craving that meaty taste? Learn how to create umami flavor in plant-based dishes.

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Black Bean-Tomato Chili

My daughter Kayla saw a black bean chili while watching a cooking show and called me about it because it looked so good. We messed with our own recipe until we got this easy winner. —Lisa Belcastro, Vineyard Haven, Massachusetts
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Roasted Balsamic Red Potatoes

When I found a potato recipe that called for vinegar, I was intrigued. But without all the ingredients on hand, I had to improvise and gave it a whirl using Italian seasoning and balsamic vinegar. It turned out great! —Lisa M. Varner, El Paso, TX
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Easy Homemade Chunky Applesauce

Here's a comforting, home-style treat that never loses its appeal. Dish up big bowlfuls and wait for the smiles! —Marilee Cardinal, Burlington, New Jersey
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Mushroom & Broccoli Soup

One of my girls won’t eat meat and the other struggles to get enough fiber. This recipe is a perfect way to give them what they need in a dish they love to eat. I save my broccoli stems in the freezer until I have about two small bags, and then I make soup. —Maria Davis, Flower Mound, Texas

By the way, these are the best meat substitutes you can buy.

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Avocado Fruit Salad with Tangerine Vinaigrette

On long summer days when we just want to relax, I make a cool salad with avocado, berries and mint. The tangerine dressing is refreshingly different. —Carole Resnick, Cleveland, Ohio
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General Tso's Cauliflower

Cauliflower florets are deep-fried to a crispy golden brown, then coated in a sauce with just the right amount of kick. This is a fun alternative to the classic chicken dish.—Nick Iverson, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Craving even more? Check out our favorite plant-based meat brands.

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Roasted Curried Chickpeas and Cauliflower

When there’s not much time to cook, try roasting potatoes and cauliflower with chickpeas for a warm-you-up dinner. It's a filling meal on its own, but you can add chicken or tofu to the sheet pan if you'd like. —Pam Correll, Brockport, Pennsylvania
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Chickpea Mint Tabbouleh

You’ll love this salad warm or chilled. For variety, add feta cheese or use this as a filling for stuffed tomatoes or mushrooms. —Brian Kennedy, Kaneohe, Hawaii
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Creamy Cauliflower Pakora Soup

My husband and I often crave pakoras, deep-fried fritters from India. I wanted to get the same flavors but use a healthier cooking technique, so I made soup using all the classic spices and our favorite veggie, cauliflower! —Melody Johnson, DePere, Wisconsin
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Smoky Cauliflower

The smoked Spanish paprika gives a simple side of roasted cauliflower extra depth. This is definitely a favorite. —Juliette Mulholland, Corvallis, Oregon
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Spice Trade Beans & Bulgur

A rich blend of spices adds flavor to tender, nutritious bulgur and garbanzo beans in this tangy dish that has just the right amount of heat. A hint of sweetness from golden raisins is the perfect accent. —Faith Cromwell, San Francisco, California
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Tofu Chow Mein

This is an easy recipe for a "tofu beginner," as it teaches people how to use it. If you have time, one way to prepare it is to cut the tofu block in half and wrap well in a terry kitchen towel. Let it sit in the fridge for at least an hour to absorb excess water. For a complete meal, serve with Chinese soup and egg rolls! — Autumn SinClaire, Gold Beach, Oregon
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Chard & White Bean Pasta

I love to prepare dishes without gluten or dairy products, and this recipe meets the criteria when you use gluten-free pasta. It's proof you can use delicious, healthy products to create a crowd-pleasing meal. It's also soy-free, nut-free and vegetarian. —Amie Valpone, New York, New York
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Okra Roasted with Smoked Paprika

When you want to cook okra without frying it, roast it with lemon juice for a lighter version. The smoked paprika gives it even more roasty oomph. —Lee Evans, Queen Creek, Arizona
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Garden Vegetable & Herb Soup

I submitted this recipe to a local newspaper and won first prize. I make this hearty soup whenever my family needs a good dose of veggies. —Jody Saulnier, Woodstock, New Hampshire
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Cauliflower with Roasted Almond & Pepper Dip

This tasty vegetable side dish can set a chilling scene on Halloween if you style it to look like a brain—try adding spiders and spiderwebs to your table setting. You can also serve it on Thanksgiving and pair it with the turkey and dressing. The festive orange sauce takes some time, but it tastes incredible.—Lauren Knoelke, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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Spicy Grilled Broccoli

My kids eat this spiced broccoli without cheese; it’s that good. It transports easily to the beach, the park or tailgate parties and also works on an indoor grill. —Kathy Lewis-Martinez, Spring Valley, California
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Sauteed Squash with Tomatoes & Onions

My favorite meals show a love of family and food. This zucchini dish with tomatoes is like a scaled-down ratatouille. —Adan Franco, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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Pico de Gallo Black Bean Soup

Everyone at my table goes for this feel-good soup. It is quick when you’re pressed for time and beats fast food, hands down. —Darlis Wilfer, West Bend, Wisconsin
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Roasted Red Pepper Tapenade

When entertaining, I often rely on my pepper tapenade recipe because it takes only 15 minutes to whip up and pop in the fridge. Sometimes I swap out the almonds for walnuts or pecans. —Donna Magliaro, Denville, New Jersey
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Marinated Almond-Stuffed Olives

Marinated stuffed olives go over so well with company that I try to keep a batch of them in the fridge at all times. —Larissa Delk, Columbia, Tennessee
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Lemon Mushroom Orzo

Sometimes I serve this side dish chilled and other times we enjoy it hot. It has a pleasant tinge of lemon and a nice crunch from pecans. —Shelly Nelson, Akeley, Minnesota
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Lemony Chickpeas

These saucy chickpeas add just a little heat to meatless Mondays. They're especially good over hot, fluffy brown rice. —April Strevell, Red Bank, New Jersey
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Lemon Pepper Roasted Broccoli

Fresh green broccoli turns tangy and tasty when roasted with lemon juice and pepper. A sprinkle of almonds adds crunch. —Liz Bellville, Jacksonville, North Carolina
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Edamame Corn Carrot Salad

I came up with this easy salad while brainstorming light, protein-filled recipes. My vegetarian and vegan friends are especially big fans. —Maiah Miller, Monterey, California
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Green Beans in Red Pepper Sauce

For easy veggies, I make a simple sauce of sweet red peppers, almonds and parsley. We also like this sauce with zucchini or roasted cauliflower. —Elisabeth Larsen, Pleasant Grove, Utah
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Red Lentil Soup Mix

Give your friends the gift of good health. Red lentils are a protein powerhouse, and loaded with folate, iron and fiber. Oh, and this soup tastes amazing, too. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Thyme-Sea Salt Crackers

These homemade crackers are decidedly light and crispy. An addictive snack on their own, they also pair well with a sharp white cheddar. —Jessica Wirth, Charlotte, North Carolina
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Vegetable Broth

The flavor of celery and mushrooms comes through in this homemade vegetable broth. Can be used as a substitution for chicken broth.
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Fresh Corn & Avocado Dip

I alter my sister's recipe by adding finely chopped jalapeno for a little heat. This is a different way of serving corn as a dip that can be made ahead of time and refrigerated until serving. —Pat Roberts, Thornton, Ontario
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Market Basket Soup

I use kohlrabi in this soothing veggie soup. The vegetable has a mellow broccoli-cabbage flavor and can be served raw, but this is my favorite way to eat it. —Kellie Foglio, Salem, Wisconsin
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Grilled Lime-Balsamic Sweet Potatoes

For me, tailgating is about camaraderie and preparing food that’s good to grill. One of my favorites is sweet potato wedges. Yum! —Raquel Perazzo, West New York, New Jersey
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Tomato & Avocado Sandwiches

I'm a vegetarian, and this is a tasty, quick and healthy lunch I could eat for every meal. At my house, we call these sandwiches HATS: hummus, avocado, tomato and shallots. These are ingredients I almost always have on hand. —Sarah Jaraha, Moorestown, New Jersey
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Warm Tasty Greens with Garlic

My farm box had too many greens, so I had to use them up. This tasty idea uses kale, tomatoes and garlic in a dish that quickly disappears. —Martha Neth, Aurora, Colorado
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Herb-Roasted Olives & Tomatoes

Eat these roasted veggies with a crunchy baguette or a couple of cheeses. You can also double, or triple, the amounts and have leftovers to toss with spaghetti the next day. —Anndrea Bailey, Huntington Beach, California
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Saucy Vegetable Tofu

This is my daughter Tonya's favorite meal. Sometimes we make it with rigatoni and call it "Riga-Tonya." It's a great dinner and a nice way to prepare yummy vegetables for the kids. —Sandra Eckert, Pottstown, Pennsylvania
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Roasted Carrots & Fennel

This addictive fennel recipe is a fresh take on one of my mother's standard wintertime dishes. I usually add more carrots—as many as the pans will hold. —Lily Julow, Lawrenceville, Georgia
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Rice Pilaf with Apples & Raisins

I love making bulgar pilaf with apricots. So glad I tried it with dried apples and golden raisins! —Elizabeth Dumont, Madison, Mississippi
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Curried Sweet Potato Wedges

Sweet potatoes roasted with curry and smoked paprika delight everybody at our table. The mango chutney makes a tangy dip. —Simi Jois, Streamwood, Illinois
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Mushroom-Bean Bourguignon

In our family, boeuf bourguignon has been a staple for generations. I wanted a meatless alternative. All this dish needs is a French baguette. —Sonya Labbe, West Hollywood, California
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Garbanzo-Stuffed Mini Peppers

Mini peppers are so colorful and are the perfect size for a two-bite appetizer. They have all the crunch of pita chips but without the extra calories. —Christine Hanover, Lewiston, California
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Black-Eyed Peas 'n' Pasta

Tradition has it that if you eat black-eyed peas on New Year's Day, you'll enjoy prosperity all year through—but I serve this tasty combination of pasta, peas and tangy tomatoes anytime. —Marie Malsch, Bridgman, Michigan
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Roasted Herb & Lemon Cauliflower

A standout cauliflower side is easy to prepare with just a few ingredients. Crushed red pepper flakes add a touch of heat. —Susan Hein, Burlington, Wisconsin
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Confetti Quinoa

If you have never tried quinoa, start with my easy side, brimming with colorful veggies. I serve it with orange-glazed chicken. —Kim Ciepluch, Kenosha, Wisconsin
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Maple-Walnut Sweet Potatoes

Topped with dried cherries and walnuts, this side is downright delicious. Even people who aren't into sweet potatoes will grab a second scoop. —Sarah Herse, Brooklyn, New York
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Swiss Chard with Onions & Garlic

I like to make this sauteed Swiss chard a main dish by serving it with pasta, but it’s also a tasty side dish all on its own. My boys love it and ask for it often. —Rebekah Chappel, Portales, New Mexico
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Asparagus Tofu Stir-Fry

With its flavorful ginger sauce and fresh vegetables, this tasty dish is a favorite. I get rave reviews every time I serve it, and it doesn’t bother my husband’s food allergies. Check out our guide if you’re new to tofu. —Phyllis Smith, Chimacum, Washington
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Hearty Vegetable Split Pea Soup

This slow-cooker soup is my secret weapon on busy days. It’s delicious served with oyster crackers that are tossed in a bit of melted butter and herbs and then lightly toasted in the oven. —Whitney Jensen, Spring Lake, Michigan
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Curried Lentil Soup

Curry gives a different taste sensation to this chili-like soup. It’s delicious with a dollop of sour cream. My family welcomes it with open arms—and watering mouths. —Christina Till, South Haven, Michigan
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Roasted Tater Rounds with Green Onions & Tarragon

I am crazy for potatoes, especially when they're roasted and toasted. Toss them with fresh herbs and green onions for a bold finish. —Ally Phillips, Murrells Inlet, South Carolina
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Quinoa Tabbouleh

When my mom and sister developed several food allergies, we had to modify many recipes. I substituted quinoa for couscous in this tabbouleh. Now we make quinoa tabbouleh all the time! —Jennifer Klann, Corbett, Oregon
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Black Bean & Corn Quinoa

Some vegan quinoa recipes are boring, but this one definitely isn't. My daughter’s college asked parents for the best quinoa recipes to use in the dining halls. This healthy quinoa recipe fits the bill. —Lindsay McSweeney, Winchester, Massachusetts

Up Next: Check out these 10 vegan Starbucks drinks to order if you’re plant-based.

Charlotte Grainger
Charlotte Grainger is a creative feature writer, with a flair for food, health and lifestyle pieces. Her work has been seen in a number of national publications including Beyond Words Magazine, Reader's Digest and Psychologies. When she’s not typing away, you can find her trying out new recipes or binging Netflix shows— sometimes simultaneously.