A vegetarian meal doesn't mean a menu of plain-Jane recipes. It can include luscious gourmet dishes that are also easy to prepare. These recipes are suitable for a dinner party or romantic meal for two, or just when you want a nice meatless meal to enjoy. From appetizers, soup, and salad, to entrees and side dishes, these recipes will impress vegetarians and meat-eaters alike.
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Herbed Vegan Mushroom Pate
Serve this herbed vegan mushroom pate as an appetizer at your cocktail party or with drinks before your gourmet dinner. Mushrooms replace the typical chopped liver and provide that earthy flavor familiar to fans of the rich spread. You can use it to top toasted slices of baguette or your favorite vegan crackers.
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Spicy Mango Ginger Soup
You can serve this spicy mango ginger soup in a shot glass as an appetizer or in a bowl as your first course. Combining fresh mango, onion, chili peppers, lime juice, and ginger, this soup is a raw food recipe packed with flavor that will delight your guests. Since it's served chilled, it's perfect for a summer dinner party on the patio.
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Vegetarian Avocado Caprese Salad
The classic vegetarian avocado Caprese salad gets an update with the addition of avocado. It's the perfect summer salad when you can get garden-ripe tomatoes and fresh basil. Dress it with olive oil and balsamic vinegar with a bit of sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper, or drizzle it with a bit of honey for a sweet twist. For a vegan version, substitute vegan mozzarella.
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Vegetarian Mushroom Risotto With Truffle Oil
Make a show-stopping dinner with this gourmet vegetarian mushroom risotto. This recipe doesn't skimp—with rich ingredients including cream, butter, white wine, cheese, and truffle oil, it's perfect for a romantic dinner. Just remember that cooking risotto requires time and patience, as you need to stir the rice with the broth and cream while it simmers.Continue to 5 of 12 below.
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Even the meat-eaters will be clamoring for a taste of this gorgeous vegetarian version of the elegant beef Wellington. Puff pastry surrounds a hearty mixture of butternut squash, sweet potato, portobello mushrooms, kale, and faro, and then the bundle is baked until golden brown. Serve with a light tarragon cream sauce for drizzling.
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Butternut Squash Ravioli With White Wine Sauce
Wow your guests by serving them homemade butternut squash ravioli—they will never know how easy they were to make with store-bought wonton wrappers. A filling of roasted and pureed butternut squash, sautéed shallots, heavy cream, and Parmesan cheese is spooned between two wrappers, sealed, and then boiled gently for just a few minutes. The white wine sauce with toasted hazelnuts is the perfect, elegant finishing touch.
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Classic Italian Potato Gnocchi
Just potatoes, flour, and salt are all you need to make homemade gnocchi, as well as some time and a little bit of effort—but these pasta pillows are fun to make. Keep them simple with a drizzle of good-quality extra-virgin olive oil, a sprinkling of Parm, a pinch of sea salt, and fresh basil, or dress with a sauce, such as creamy mushroom sauce, gorgonzola sauce, or homemade pesto.
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Vegan Sun-Dried Tomato Risotto
This vegan and vegetarian sun-dried tomato risotto looks lovely on the plate and bursts with fresh basil and parsley as well as sun-dried tomatoes, of course. Arborio rice is the grain of choice when making risotto, as it becomes nice and creamy as it cooks. It calls for vegan Parmesan cheese, but if you don't need this recipe to be dairy-free you can use regular Parm.Continue to 9 of 12 below.
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Vegan Oven-Roasted Sunchokes
Although a simple recipe, the fact that the main ingredient is not that common makes this dish somewhat special. Sunchokes are a seasonal winter vegetable and perfect for adding to your table for the holidays or a Valentine's Day dinner. These vegan oven-roasted sunchokes (Jerusalem artichokes) are an excellent side dish to replace typical potato dishes as the root vegetable has a nutty, slightly sweet flavor with a satisfying crunch.
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A beautiful vegan ratatouille will add great color to the table and pack lots of flavor. It's the perfect summer dish when zucchini, eggplant, and bell pepper are in season, whether growing in your garden or bought from the farmers market. Feel free to make this ahead of time as the dish tastes even better the next day.
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Tomato Tart With Fillo and Feta Cream
A wonderful way to enjoy colorful, fresh tomatoes, this beautiful tart is bursting with flavor. The creamy feta mixture seasoned with za'atar and oregano adds a slightly salty layer between the buttery fillo dough and juicy tomatoes. Although easy to put together, the tart makes an impressive centerpiece on the summer dinner table.
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Hasselback Butternut Squash
This recipe proves that simple can be elegant. Calling for just four ingredients—whole butternut squash, butter, brown sugar, and toasted walnuts—this pretty dish will be the star of the dinner table. To achieve the attractive appearance, the squash needs to be peeled and repeatedly sliced (but not all the way through; a set of chopsticks is helpful). The dish is finished off with a sprinkling of chopped nuts and fresh sage.