Nothing beats classic Italiann food, and there are so many amazing Italian vegetarian recipes out there.
Think about it: pasta, pizza, soups, and salads are all fantastic veggie-friendly meals that are great with or without meat.
In many cases, the original recipes are all full of vegetables already.
The truth is, a lot of authentic Italian food is quite different from what we consider standard.
For example, they don’t go quite as crazy with cheese in the same way we do.
That means many of these recipes can so easily be made into Italian vegan recipes – if they’re not already!
So, if you’re ready to dig in, I have 30 incredible Italian vegetarian recipes for you to try.
I planted rosemary last year, and as soon as it came into its own, I started putting it in everything.
It has such a unique flavor that’s not overpowering but still strong enough to stand out against the mushrooms in this dish.
You can use Parmesan to add a light cheesy taste here, but if you want to keep it vegan, nutritional yeast will be your new best friend.
Just look at that stunning picture! Nobody would know at first glance that this baby is vegan.
The good news is that most homemade pizza doughs are vegan-friendly.
They need just a handful of readily available ingredients – flour, water, yeast, salt, and olive oil.
Honestly, the fewer ingredients, the better the dough!
But it’s the cashew “mozzarella” that adds a touch of authenticity here.
It won’t pull like the real deal, but it will add a delightful creaminess that many vegan pizzas lack.
Raise your hand if you own a fancy coffee machine? Now, raise your hand if you know how to use it properly?
I’m pretty lazy with mine and don’t usually take the time to make something special, like a cappuccino.
But it’s so much easier than you think and will give your next book club or coffee morning an added flair.
The trick is to start with top-quality coffee and make it nice and strong. I also like to dust mine with some cinnamon or cocoa powder.
I think I love Italian recipes so much because of the Italians’ unapologetic love for carbs.
Crostini is a simple little thing to whip up but will pair with everything from soups and stews to hot dips and cheese plates.
Baguettes are ideal for this, giving you just the right size and structure.
You’ll really need a crust all the way around if you plan on adding a topping.
I make focaccia at least once a week, and it’s always a hit in my house.
From the crunchy sea salt to the tender crumb, I can eat it on its own, or even as an open sandwich.
I highly recommend trying this recipe out because you’ll make it all the time once you do.
I like to keep it simple with garlic and rosemary, but you can just as easily use this for pizza dough.
Try out different toppings, too, like sundried tomatoes and anchovies or olives and feta.
When they’re ripe and fragrant, I just can’t resist a big basket full of tomatoes.
As a person who is less than enthusiastic about salads (or rather, lettuce), this is the perfect little side for a summer dinner.
This can just as easily be made with a colorful medley of cherry tomatoes, but the thick slices of beefy tomatoes are very impressive when you serve them up.
Just be sure they’re ripe!
Just when you thought pasta couldn’t get any better, someone went ahead and decided to deep fry it!
These vegan ravioli obviously don’t contain any cheese, but there is some vegan Parmesan in the breadcrumb mix for extra flavor.
If you don’t need them to be vegan, feel free to use the real stuff.
To ensure they’re perfectly crisp, be sure to fry them as soon as they’re dipped.
If you leave them to sit, the coating will turn mushy.
I know a lot of people that struggle with eggplant – mostly due to its consistency.
It can be mushy and unpleasant when it’s not cooked right.
For this recipe, you’ll salt your eggplant first to help eliminate some of the bitterness and excess moisture.
After cooking in the water and vinegar mix, you’ll just need to toss in spices and store in oil, much like you might garlic.
Then, you can pull out what you need, be it for a salad topping or a fresh little side dish.
Here’s another fantastic little make-ahead dish you can prepare and keep in the fridge for a last-minute brunch, lunch, or dinner.
White beans are known to be super buttery, which makes them the perfect source of protein here.
They’re also relatively mild in flavor, which is why the other ingredients are so essential.
Between the onion, mushrooms, sun-dried tomatoes, olive oil, lemon juice, tomato, and parsley – a lot is going on here.
So, you can eat this as a light lunch with some crostini or serve it on the side of some lovely flaky white fish.
Loosely translated, giardiniera means “from the garden,” which is what this brilliant recipe embodies.
It’s a relish, of sorts, made using any number of fresh veggies you can think of.
Everything gets chopped and cooked until tender before being placed in a sterilized jar for pickling.
This is the kind of thing you would make when everything is ripe and ready to go that will also last you all winter.
Though it may look like brown rice, farro has a much higher nutrient content and is loaded with protein and fiber.
It tastes quite nutty, with notes of oats underneath, and is a whole grain which makes it not a gluten-free option.
Still, with it being so good for you, it’s a great alternative to rice or quinoa.
If you’re looking for a way to showcase some of those sensational fresh veggies you picked up at the market, this recipe is for you!
Just chop it all up and toss it together.
Bruschetta is a lovely appetizer that’s usually served cold and crunchy. At least, the topping is served cold.
You’ll grill your bread before plating, and it’s best to serve these right away, so the bread doesn’t go soggy.
Much like farro, chickpeas are full of goodness, so adding them to your salad will not only bulk it out but will make it even healthier.
The dressing for this couldn’t be more straightforward. Just whisk together some olive oil, vinegar, salt, pepper, and oregano.
You could also add a touch of balsamic if you wanted an extra kick of flavor.
Warm, filling, and loaded with vegan meatballs; this soup is going to make this Fall so much more pleasant.
A lot of the base for this soup is what you might expect, like onions, celery, carrots, and garlic.
There’s also lots of kale and acini de pepe pasta, which looks like pearl couscous but is more like smaller orzo pasta.
If you can find vegan meatballs in the store, you’ll save yourself a lot of time, but the recipe provided here is pretty popular.
Of course, you could also substitute the meatballs for vegan sausage.
This is such a simple dish, but I guarantee it will be a hit. You can’t beat butter and garlic!
I really love the little addition of paprika here, though I also like to toss in some veggies if I have them, too.
This would be the perfect dish to have with some fancy focaccia!
This sauce is so creamy and silky smooth, I almost didn’t believe it!
You might’ve already guessed, but you will need cashews for this recipe.
The key to getting the right consistency is a high-powered blender. You’ll want to soak your cashews and be patient.
Let them blitz for a while until they’re velvety and delicious.
If you’re not adding nutritional yeast to your food, are you even vegan?
I add it to everything – including meat – because it’s just so good for you and is loaded with great flavor.
I promise, making your own vegan Parmesan cheese will lift your vegan/vegetarian meals up to a new level.
Although, with how this is cooked, it’s already pretty creamy without it.
Cacio e pepe quite literally means “cheese and pepper.”
So, as you might’ve guessed, you’ll need some more of those magical cashews to make this creamy, dreamy, cheesy sauce!
This sauce is so close to the real deal; you’ll want to make extra. Vegan mac and cheese, anyone?
Speaking of vegan mac and cheese, if you’re looking for a creamy pasta sauce that’s still full of nutrients, you’ll just have to try this pumpkin and cashew sauce!
It’s a little sweeter than the recipe above, but the pumpkin adds so much lovely, light flavor, along with a touch of color.
Of course, you could always make this with coconut cream instead, it just might not be as thick.
Or, if you aren’t looking to make this vegan, go ahead and throw in some heavy cream and cheddar cheese!
If you saw the word “Tuscan” and assumed this dish would be full of sundried tomatoes and spinach, you’re absolutely right!
The sauce here is a lovely and light yet creamy dressing to the pillowy gnocchi, and there are no nuts in sight!
Just warm some vegetable broth, coconut milk, lemon juice, Italian seasoning, and sun-dried tomatoes in a pot and then wilt in the spinach.
Pasta e Fagioli is an Italian soup, much like minestrone, but with beans and pasta rather than a slew of veggies.
It’s thick, filling, and perfect to warm you up when it’s cold outside.
White beans are the best options here, but chickpeas would work in a pinch!
You’ll notice that the ingredient list for this looks very similar to the one above.
As I said, they’re pretty close when it comes down to flavors and texture.
You’ll also notice that this recipe has far more veggies on the list.
In addition to white beans, you’ll use green beans and zucchini, and plenty of greens, too!
I’m a huge fan of tortellini and ravioli because you can get so many fabulous fillings these days.
From pumpkin and bacon to cheese and spinach, it’s such an easy way to boost your dinner.
The issue with “creamy” soups and pasta dishes tends to be the high calories.
Even if you aren’t looking for vegan recipes, you can still make some simple swaps to cut down on the fat content.
In this case, they say to use cashew butter, which is much easier than making your own. Or, you could always try silken tofu.
Mushrooms can be a little hit or miss, if you ask me.
Sure, they’re nice and meaty, but it’s also pretty easy to overcook them to the point that they’re rubbery.
There’s no chance of that here, though, as you’ll only cook them for a matter of minutes.
It’s just enough to give them a nice bit of color.
I’ve made this recipe a few times recently, and I have to admit that it’s almost always with added shrimp.
If you’re not 100% vegetarian, shrimp pairs perfectly with this zesty sauce.
If shrimp is off the table, I do recommend adding some crispy tofu if you have it.
I just feel it needs an extra something to go with the lemony sauce.
It’s so important to have a go-to tomato sauce in your back pocket, and this one should definitely be a contender!
Full of blistering, sun-ripened tomatoes, roasted garlic, and lots of onion, this is perfect for everything from pasta and pizza to meatballs and chicken parm.
The minute the weather turns warm, I delight in the knowledge I can enjoy a daily affogato!
Never had one? Run to the kitchen asap because they’re heavenly and dangerously easy to whip up!
All you’ll need is hot coffee (preferable espresso) and vanilla ice cream (preferably top-quality).
Just pour the coffee over your scoop of ice cream and enjoy! I also like to add a drizzle of caramel to mine for added sweetness.
Not only are biscotti delicious and easy to make, but they also last a long while.
Make a big batch because you’ll want one every day with your morning coffee.
These twice-baked cookies are first made and baked in a log shape.
Once cooked, they’re lovely and tender, and you could eat them just like that.
To get the biscotti crunch, you’ll need to slice and bake them again. Just be sure to let it cool before you slice.
Italian butter cookies are something you no doubt see every Christmas.
They’re like a cross between shortbread, sugar cookies, and Viennese whirls. They’re so buttery, you won’t be able to stop at just one.
Unlike regular cookies, this dough is very soft, and you’ll need to pipe it into the shape you want.
When baking, pull them from the oven just as they start to turn to keep them beautifully crumbly.
One thing is for sure when it comes to Europeans and hot chocolate: they don’t rely on any sugar packets!
If you order hot chocolate in Italy (or France), you’ll be presented with a thick mug of heaven.
No packs of “cocoa” here. They use real chocolate and cocoa powder (the baking kind) to make this rich and deeply intense.
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