20 Family-Friendly Vegetarian Dinner Recipes
Whether it's Monday, or any other day of the week, eating more plant-based meals can be healthy and delicious. Worried that the carnivores in your family will balk? They won't miss the meat a bit once you serve up one of these hearty, kid-friendly recipes.
Mushroom and Pepper Fajita Bowl
Broiled portobello mushroom caps tossed with chili powder and coriander give this main dish all the hearty umami flavor you need.
Grilled Chayote and Onion Quesadillas
Swap squash with chayote to freshen up your veggie quesadillas. Tip: When chopping chayote, cut around small center core and then discard core pieces.
Sweet Potato-Poblano Enchiladas
Coarsely mashed white beans is the secret to taking these vegetarian enchiladas to the next level without having to add meat.
Serve with toppings such as lime wedges, jicama matchsticks, shredded cheese, crushed tortilla chips, and thinly sliced cabbage and radishes.
Potato and Vegetarian “Chorizo” Tacos
Made of soy or seitan, vegetarian “chorizo” adds a kick of flavor!
Everyone loves Taco Night! Protein-packed quinoa stands in for the beef in this family-friendly recipe. Put out bowls of assorted fillings and let the kids build their own.
Chickpea and Squash Curry
Store-bought curry paste adds just a gentle heat to this super-quick, flavorful meal.
Tofu Tender Supper
What You'll Need: Extra firm tofu, eggs, panko breadcrumbs, Old Bay seasoning, garlic powder, black pepper, salt, nonstick cooking spray, sweet potatoes, olive oil, fresh rosemary, coleslaw mix, apple cider vinegar, malt vinegar (optional)
Spaghetti With Lentil Bolognese
French green lentils (aka lentilles du Puy) hold their shape better than standard green lentils, giving this Bolognese a texture similar to that of a traditional meat sauce.
Creole-Style Artichoke Jambalaya
Frozen artichoke hearts add heft to this veggie-packed rice dish, while beans add protein. Don’t be put off by the long ingredient list; half of it is spices you likely already have in your cabinet.
Black Bean and Herb Burgers
Vegetarian burgers don't have to be boring. These black bean burgers are filled with flavor, easy to cook, and budget-friendly to boot.
Baked Ziti Soup
A healthy twist on baked ziti, this hearty tomato basil soup comes together in your slow cooker. It has noodles mixed right in, and we've even topped it off with a bit of gooey cheese. Round out the meal with a green salad and garlic bread for dunking.
Pizza with Zucchini and Smoked Mozzarella
Sautéed zucchini and smoked mozzarella stand in for pepperoni in this crowd-pleasing entr?e. Raw garlic in the uncooked, ready-in-10-minutes tomato sauce adds punch. If you don't want to wait the hour for the dough to become easier to work with, use a store-bought ready-to-heat flatbread crust and follow the package instructions. For heat-lovers, drizzle the finished pie with chile oil. From the cookbook Meatless All Day by Dina Cheney.
Pepper and Potato Tacos
Fixing more plant-based meals can be healthier, and it's also a smart way to trim a grocery budget. Serve these tacos deconstructed and let your family members build their own. With so much flavor no one will miss the meat.
Tofu is a busy mom's best friend. It's a good source of protein, easy to cook, and very budget-friendly. In this recipe the tofu gets tons of flavor from a quick soy sauce marinade and a delicious drizzle of peanut sauce.
Better-for-You Baked Mac
This fontina-cheese mac contains about 70 calories and 13 grams of fat fewer than typical baked mac 'n' cheese versions.
Lemony Lentil Soup
Thanks to the lentils, just one portion of this vegetarian soup packs as much energy-boosting protein as a beef burger. And since it's made in the slow cooker you can plug it in and go.
Vegetarian Fried Rice
When you first prepare this recipe, use a few of your child's favorite vegetables; then slip in a new variety each time you make it.
Southwestern Quinoa Burgers
Cooking these vegetarian quinoa burgers in a skillet gives the edges a yummy, unexpected crunch. Kids will really go for the melty cheese and ultra-mild spice.
Polenta with Mushrooms
Using a combination of different mushrooms gives this vegetarian dish layers of flavor. The mushrooms are equally delicious on top of risotto or pasta.