I’m all about easy vegan dinners during the weekdays! The fewer the ingredients, and the less amount of time the better! But it also must be delicious, and family-friendly! I compiled a list of 43 of my favorite simple vegan dinner recipes that take 30 minutes or less and require simple ingredients! This is my go-to list when I’m lacking inspiration and need to get dinner on the table in a hurry!
When it’s Thursday night and I’ve been cooking all week, I’m in need of a simple vegan dinner that I can get on the table in a hurry. I put together this list of recipes from my own blog, as well as other bloggers to compile a comprehensive list of easy vegan dinners!
These vegan recipes are perfect for those that are beginning the vegan journey, and those that are seasoned pros! The best part about these recipes is that they take 30 minutes or less to prepare and are mouthwateringly delicious, and family-friendly!
You can also count on these meals being nutritious, delicious, and quick. Over the years I’ve developed a few mealtime strategies when I’m in a pickle over what to prepare.
- Why These Recipes Work
- How to Prepare an Easy Vegan Meal Without a Recipe
- Creating A Simple Vegan Dinner Recipe
- Easy Lentil Pasta Recipe Ingredients:
- Easy Lentil Pasta Instructions
- Easy Vegan Pasta Recipes
- Vegan Soups, Stews, and Chilis
- Hearty Vegan Salads and Greens
- Vegan Burgers and Sandwiches
- Vegan Curries
- Vegan Mexican Recipes
- Vegan Asian Recipes
- Meal Planning Tips
- More Easy Vegan Dinners!
Why These Recipes Work
- Simple and Quick: All of these recipes or vegetarian and vegan and use simple ingredients and take 30 minutes or less. You don’t have to worry about finding obscure ingredients. All ingredients can easily be found at your local grocery store, and most are probably in your pantry and refrigerator right now!
- Healthy and Balanced: When it comes to dinner you and your family need a meal that is healthy and balanced with an assortement of vegetables, protein, healthy carbs , and healthy fats. These recipes are just that! You can be assured you’re getting all the nutrients you need for a well balanced meal that will fill you up and keep you satsified!
- Perfect for Beginners: There are no complicated cooking techiniques or a long list of ingredients. These recipes are perfect for those that are just beginning to try out vegan recipes!
- Kid-Friendly: There’s nothing more frustraing than preparing a meal that your kids turn their nose up to. These recipes are kid-approved!
- Easy on the Budget: Many of these recipes can be made for $10 or less! How’s that for a cheap meal for 4?
- Great for Meal Prep: I find that if I make a plan for the week for what I’m preparing for dinner I end up spending a lot less money on groceries, and also don’t feel overwhelmed during the week. These recipes are perfect for those that like to meal prep!
How to Prepare an Easy Vegan Meal Without a Recipe
Even when you have the best intentions to create a meal plan for the week, there are nights when you’re just done with cooking or lack the inspiration to follow a recipe. That’s when you create your own simple and balanced easy vegan dinner in just a few steps!
Start With a Vegetable
Look in your fridge or freezer and pull out a vegetable. I keep frozen vegetables in stock in my freezer for these occasions. Broccoli, green beans, cauliflower, peas, are our go-to frozen veggies. Or maybe you have some produce in your refrigerator-that needs to be eaten before it goes bad, go ahead and pull that out.
Another option is to prepare a simple green salad if you have the ingredients.
Add a Plant-Based Protein
If you’re new to vegan this is probably where you get stumped! Making the mental switch from animal protein to plant protein has a bit of a learning curve. The most common question I get as a vegan is “Where do you get your protein?”
Here is a list of vegan protein sources:
- Black Beans
- Kidney Beans
- Butter Beans
- Split Peas
- Nut Butters
- Pumpkin Seeds
- Hemp Seeds
- Wild Rice
- Soy Milk and Other Plant-Milks
Add a Whole Grain Carbohydrate
While there are many low-carb diets out there, carbohydrates are essential for our bodies. They provide glucose which provides energy. Not all glucose is unhealthy. As a rule, avoid or limit refined carbohydrates, and refined sugars, and substitute them for whole-grain carbohydrates instead.
Here is a list of healthy carbs:
- Wholewheat Pasta
- Lentil Pasta
- Chickpea Pasta
- Sprouted Whole Grain Bread
- Corn Tortillas
- Whole Wheat Tortillas
- Organic Brown Rice
- Wild Rice
- Baked Potato
- Sweet Potatoes
Add Some Spices or Sauce
After you choose something from each category of vegetable, protein, and healthy carbohydrate, it’s time to add some flavor and some fat!
These are the go-to spices that I use on a weekly basis. They are also spices that you likely have on your spice rack right now! There are many more spices I use, but these are a good start!
- Chili Powder
- Salt and Pepper
- Curry Powder
- Garlic Powder
- Onion Powder
- Cayenne Pepper
- Red Pepper Flakes
- Soy Sauce
- Coconut Aminos
- Coconut Milk
- Green Curry
- Red Curry
- Marinara Sauce
- Pesto Sauce
Creating A Simple Vegan Dinner Recipe
Now that you have pulled a vegetable, a protein, a healthy carbohydrate, and some spices or sauces, it’s time to create some magic!
Here’s an example of a simple vegan dinner recipe I make regularly.
Easy Lentil Pasta Recipe Ingredients:
Vegetable-10 ounces of organic leaf spinach
Protein-1 cup Cooked Lentils
Carbohydrate-16 ounces Whole Wheat Pasta
Sauce-24 ounce Jar of Store-Bought Vegan Marinara
Easy Lentil Pasta Instructions
Step 1: Cook the pasta according to the package directions. Drain and set aside.
Step 2: While pasta is cooking, add the marinara sauce to a large saucepan or pot. Simmer on medium-low heat. Add a little spinach at a time, stirring to incorporate until the spinach has wilted and the entire bag of spinach has been added to the sauce.
Step 3: Stir in the cooked lentils. Simmer for 3 minutes until lentils have warmed.
Step 4: Add the drained pasta to the pot with the sauce, tossing to coat. Serve and enjoy!
Easy Vegan Pasta Recipes
This vegan mushroom pasta with spinach in a cashew cream sauce is a comforting, easy, and family-friendly meal! It’s healthy satisfying comfort food at its best.
This quick and tasty creamy vegan garlic pasta is an easy vegan dinner idea that’s perfect for busy weeknights. In only 20minutes you’ll have a flavorful vegan dinner on the table!
Super flavorful and perfectly spiced Thai red curry pasta recipe that is packed with stir fry vegetables and ready in under 20 minutes!
One of the easiest dinners around – 6 ingredient roasted eggplant pasta! Enjoy your favorite pasta noodles served with roasted eggplant & onions in a rich tomato sauce with fresh herbs.
Red lentil pasta mixed with sautéed garlicky lemon kale and a vegan walnut “cheese” topping is a quick, easy and nutritious meal. Ready in 25 minutes!
This crispy pan-fried gnocchi with a homemade spinach pesto comes together in 20 minutes. Nutritious, budget-friendly, and super easy to make, this is the perfect midweek meal.
The flavor of this Creamy Zucchini Pasta is delicious and simple to make. Using coconut milk as a base, the sweetness paired with tomatoes and zucchini creates a wonderful flavor combination. Ready in 30 minutes!
American Style Vegan Goulash made with lentils, whole wheat macaroni, peppers, and onions in a smoky tomato sauce is a comforting and healthy one-pot meal. Ready in 30 minutes!
This creamy vegan butternut squash mac and cheese is a healthy family meal made with whole food plant-based ingredients that is done in 30 minutes.
Vegan Soups, Stews, and Chilis
Thick and creamy with chunks of veggies, this filling vegan broccoli cheddar soup is healthier than the traditional but full of the same cheesy flavor!
This Lebanese Lentil Soup with crushed red lentils, and vegetables in a spiced broth is simple to prepare and only requires a few ingredients. It’s done in under 30 minutes!
Low Calorie Lentil Soup
This low-calorie lentil soup is chock full of vegetables, leafy greens, protein-rich lentils, and tons of spices. It’s a warm, comforting, heart-healthy bowl of goodness ready in 30 minutes.
This simple vegan pozole recipe is a 30-minute weeknight dinner that is full of plant protein, vitamins, and nutrients, while also being ultra-tasty and comforting!
A thick and hearty vegan Irish stew with traditional flavors, that’s so easy to make and done in 30 minutes!
Creamy and thick this Vegan Mushroom Soup is a quick and easy meal made with a few simple ingredients.
This smoky sweet potato and red pepper soup is smooth and satisfying. It’s a versatile recipe you can use to flavor in many ways. I like to top mine with chopped cashews, cilantro, and a sprinkle of red pepper flakes. Ready in 30 minutes!
This easy vegan chili made with black beans, kidney beans, and pinto beans is super simple to pull together for a weeknight meal and takes only 30 minutes to prepare. Full of heart-healthy plant protein, high in fiber, and low in calories, this chili is super satisfying.
This easy and deliciously creamy vegan pumpkin soup is made with seven simple ingredients (plus salt and pepper), and ready to eat in 15 minutes.
A creamy vegan tomato soup bursting with fresh flavors and spices, and coconut milk for creaminess. Ready in 15 minutes!
Hearty Vegan Salads and Greens
A simple and high-protein 10-minute chickpea curry salad with a balance of sweet and savory elements. Crunchy apples and sweet plump raisins are paired with celery and red onion in a creamy vegan curry dressing.
Vegan Burgers and Sandwiches
Homemade Black bean burgers made with southwest spices are loaded with plant protein and veggies. Ready in 30 minutes!
These easy-to-make chickpea patties have the flavors of the Mediterranean. Moist vegan chickpea burgers are seasoned with fresh parsley, and spices, served on top of a whole wheat bun, with crisp slices of lettuce, juicy tomatoes, and a creamy vegan dill sauce! Ready in 30 minutes!
Assorted roasted vegetables with hummus, lettuce, and tomato are wrapped in a thin bread to create this irresistible Lavash Wrap Sandwich. Ready in 20 minutes!
This copycat Panera Mediterranean Veggie Sandwich recipe is a simple 10-minute sandwich that you can make at home! Layered with hummus and fresh veggies! So easy, and satisfying!
These Vegan Sloppy Joes are made with lentils, onions, red pepper, and a perfect balance of seasonings. Using pantry ingredients and taking less than 30 minutes to prepare, they’re flavorful, easy, and perfect for a weeknight meal!
This simple chickpea curry spinach dish served with brown rice comes together in 30 minutes. It’s a healthy weeknight meal full of plant protein, chopped spinach, and a rich tomato curry sauce.
This authentic Vegan Thai Red Curry is simple to make, and WAY healthier than take out! Made with a combination of vegetables with spicy red curry in a creamy coconut milk sauce, it’s served alongside Jasmine rice and topped with fresh herbs! Ready in 30 minutes, it’s a quick and healthy weeknight meal!
Simmered in a rich coconut milk sauce, this vegan cauliflower curry with chickpeas is a simple weeknight meal, loaded with nutrients! It’s flavorful, easy to make, and family-friendly!
Curried Lentils are flavorful, rich in nutrients, and totally satisfying! With crunchy carrots, sweet onions, and bell peppers this lentil dish delivers on texture and taste! Serve with rice or quinoa.
This simplified Chole Masala recipe, a popular Northern Indian chickpea dish, is cooked in a thick and spicy gravy. It’s ready in thirty minutes! Wholesome, vegan, and gluten-free. Serve with basmati rice and cilantro!
Vegan Mexican Recipes
This simple to make lentil taco meat is packed with fiber, plant protein, and big on flavor. Make your own vegan tacos in 30 minutes or less, and add your favorite toppings like avocado, chopped tomato, cilantro, and green onion in a soft of crunchy tortilla!
When you’re craving take-out, make this simple vegan chipotle bowl, complete with fajita-style vegetables, seasoned black beans, rice, and avocado. It’s a simple healthy bowl that’s full of smoky and spicy flavor! Ready in 20 minutes.
This tofu fajitas recipe is a simple and flavorful vegan dinner in under 30 minutes. Packed with tons of protein, vitamins, and minerals!
These crispy cauliflower tacos are roasted in chipotle spice and sandwiched between whole wheat tortillas topped with homemade guacamole and pico de gallo for a family-friendly weeknight meal that’s done in under 30 minutes!
These vegan nachos with black beans and cashew cheese sauce are the ultimate easy family dinner for those weeknights when you’re ready to call in for take-out. Ready in 30 minutes.
Vegan Asian Recipes
Sliced portobello mushrooms are cooked in a spicy soy sauce marinade, and paired with quick pickled onions, simple greens, and sliced tomatoes, in between fluffy whole wheat buns.
Tofu chop suey with bok choy, bean sprouts, and tofu in an authentic stir-fry sauce, served with brown rice. It’s a simple 20-minute meal that’s perfect for busy weeknights!
A healthy and easy take-out inspired recipe, these teriyaki noodles are simply seasoned with ginger and garlic, with fresh vegetables and crispy tofu! It’s a one-dish meal for the whole family!
Brown rice, peas, carrots, and pineapple are sautéd in seasoned sauce, and topped with fresh scallions and cashews! It’s a complete meal in one pan! Ready in 20 minutes!
Chickpea Orange Chicken (Vegan)
Vegan Orange Chicken is a delicious plant-based dinner made with chickpeas! Gluten-free, healthy, delicious, and done in 30 minutes!
Meal Planning Tips
The key to creating easy vegan dinners is to create a plan! Meal planning can take on several different versions from prepping meals ahead of time, to simply deciding what you want to cook for the week.
To be completely honest, I don’t do a lot of meal prep with the exception of chopping some vegetables. But I do create a plan for the week. I find it easier when planning to create a theme for each day of the week. It looks something like this:
Monday-Soup or Chili Night (Served with Salad and Bread)
Tuesday-Mexican Night (Tacos, Burritos, Nachos, etc)
Wednesday-Asian or Indian Night (Curries, Stir-Fry, etc).
Thursday-Pasta or Itailan Night
Friday-Leftovers (Mom needs a break from cooking!)
Saturday-Take-Out or Go Out to Eat
Sunday-Sandwiches or Veggie Burgers (Create a meal plan for the following week.)
This helps us keep from relying on takeout or going out to eat too often, and also helps us stick a grocery list, which helps keep our grocery budget down.
Get your Free Vegan Grocery List Printable!
More Easy Vegan Dinners!
I hope you found this list of recipes helpful so that you have an easy resource to meal plan easy vegan dinners that only take 30 minutes or less. If you have any questions about going vegan or preparing vegan dinners, please comment below. You can also follow me on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest for more family-friendly plant-based vegan recipes!