Don’t know what to feed your vegetarian friend, or looking for your own veggie inspiration? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Whether you like it spicy or you want classic comfort food, you’ll find a meat-free meal to satisfy with our list of vegetarian dinner ideas, inspired by countries all around the world.
Think of dahl as India’s equivalent to mac and cheese. It’s a classic comfort food that can be eaten as a side or as a main and, best of all, it’s naturally vegetarian. This thick soup-like dish comes in different forms, usually made with either chickpeas or lentils as a base, and is flavored with garlic, onion, turmeric, cumin, and coriander.
Risotto might not be the first dish you think of when you think of Italian cuisine, but it’s definitely one of the best. This creamy rice dish is the ideal veggie meal idea for that upcoming fancy dinner party you’re hosting, and it also doubles as a cozy comfort food perfect in the colder months. Enjoy it with your choice of veggies for extra flavor - mushroom and pumpkin are both popular options.
Pumpkin katsu curry is the veggie-friendly alternative to chicken katsu curry, and it’s every bit as delicious. Breaded pumpkin pieces are soaked in a creamy curry sauce flavoured with garlic, ginger, turmeric, and a hint of brown sugar. It’s usually served over rice, but you can go ahead and serve it over a second portion of katsu curry if you want. We won’t judge.
China: Vegetable chow mein
Given that it’s usually preceded by the word “chicken”, you’d be forgiven for thinking that chow mein is not vegetarian-friendly. But actually, chow mein simply refers to stir-fried noodles, which can be served with all kinds of seasonings and ingredients. For a veggie dish, skip the meat and load up on the vegetables, such as baby corn, bean sprouts, and carrots.
Malaysia: Roti canai
Likely a result of the heavy Indian influence on Malaysian cuisine, roti canai has become something of a national dish. Sometimes known as roti prata, this delicious dish is a type of flatbread defined by its soft and flaky texture, typically served with dahl or a similar curry for dipping. It works for every meal of the day, but is a particularly popular breakfast dish.
One of the few foods that somehow manages to be fancy and child-friendly all at once, quiche is a great party dish. Whether you’re having the family over for dinner or laying out a buffet, this savoury pastry is a guaranteed people-pleaser. The essential ingredients are the crust, the egg, and the cheese, but you can add your own extras like mushrooms or spinach.
Spain: Tortilla de patata
You had us at patata. This Spanish dish roughly translates to potato omelet, which also translates to our idea of heaven. Tortilla de patata makes a great breakfast dish that will guarantee you plenty of energy for the day, or it can be served at lunchtime with a light salad for a fresh and tasty midday meal.
Morocco: Vegetable tangine
Did you know that tagine refers to the type of pot that this dish is traditionally cooked in? Thought to date all the way back to the 9th Century, this meal has really stood the test of time – and it’s not hard to see why. A mouth-watering combination of sweet and savoury, tagines typically include a combination of grains, dried fruits, and a selection of spices.
Anything that gets its name from cheese has got to be a vegetarian favourite. The classic Mexican quesadilla is a sort of next-level sandwich made from soft corn tortillas (sometimes swapped for flour tortillas) that are filled with cheese and your choice of extra ingredients before being cooked on the griddle.
We couldn’t let this list end without including a veggie version of a Canadian classic. The time-honored combination of fries, (vegetable) gravy and cheese makes a dish that’s a) delicious, b) a great comfort food and c) vegetarian. What more could you ask for? Poutine for everyone!
Never mind your passport – grab your fork. We’re going around the world in 30 vegetarian dishes. And yes, we know that there are only 10 dishes listed, but they’re so delicious that we’re ordering three of each via Uber Eats.