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15 Cheap Vegan Dinner Recipes

Following a vegan diet can actually help you save money. These delicious dinners are some of our favorite recipes that showcase foods like beans, lentils, canned goods and root vegetables. They’re budget-friendly and packed with nutrition and flavor. These inexpensive plant-based dishes range include salads, pastas, soups and more.

One-Pot Tomato Basil Pasta

This one-pot pasta with tangy tomato-basil sauce is a simple, fast and easy weeknight dinner. All of your ingredients go into one pot, and with a bit of stirring and about 25 minutes of cook time, you’ll have a healthy dinner the whole family will enjoy. Source: EatingWell.com, March 2019

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Slow-Cooker Curried Butternut Squash Soup

Skip the roasting in this butternut squash soup recipe and let your slow cooker do the work instead. Just load up all the ingredients into the crock pot, set it and forget it for an easy, healthy dinner or packable lunches. Source: EatingWell.com, August 2018

Tomato, Cucumber & White-Bean Salad with Basil Vinaigrette

This no-cook bean salad is a delicious way to use summer’s best cherry or grape tomatoes and juicy cucumbers for a light dinner or lunch. Fresh basil elevates an easy vinaigrette recipe that dresses up this simple salad into something extraordinary. Source: EatingWell.com, June 2018

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Vegan Shepherd’s Pie

Lentils take the place of ground meat and vegan butter adds creaminess to the mashed potatoes in this easy vegan shepherd’s pie recipe. If you want to cut down on the cooking time, use precooked lentils and omit most of the vegetable broth, adding some in only if the mixture seems dry. Source: EatingWell.com, December 2019

Stuffed Potatoes with Salsa & Beans

Taco night meets baked potato night with this simple recipe for loaded baked potatoes with salsa, beans and avocado. This easy, healthy family dinner comes together with just 10 minutes of active time, so you can make it on even the busiest of weeknights. This recipe is just as delicious with sweet potatoes in place of russets. Source: EatingWell Magazine, October 2019

Tofu Tacos

These quick vegan tacos, filled with a spicy tofu filling, make a perfect weeknight dinner. To keep them vegan, top them with shredded cabbage, fresh pico de gallo and guacamole. For vegetarians, add crumbled queso fresco. Source: EatingWell.com, January 2020

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Egyptian Tossed Salad

This crisp blend of vegetables is offered as a topping or side at Zooba, the Egyptian street food restaurant in New York City. We made it a stand-alone salad to stuff into pita with taameya (Egyptian falafel–see Associated Recipes) or serve with just about anything else. (Recipe adapted from Zooba Restaurant.) Source: EatingWell Magazine, March 2020

Egyptian Lentil Soup

Use red, yellow or even brown lentils to make this iconic and super-simple Middle Eastern soup. Skip green or black lentils, which won’t soften enough to puree smoothly. (Recipe adapted from Zooba Restaurant.) Source: EatingWell Magazine, March 2020

Sweet Potato-Black Bean Burgers

These vegan sweet potato-black bean burgers spiced with curry powder are easy to make. Blending the mixture with your hands gives you a soft, uniform texture then the outside gets crispy by cooking in a cast-iron pan. To make this recipe gluten-free too, use gluten-free oats and serve the patty in a lettuce wrap, omitting the bun. Source: EatingWell.com, February 2020

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Curried Sweet Potato & Peanut Soup

In this flavorful soup recipe, sweet potatoes simmer in a quick coconut curry, resulting in a creamy, thick broth punctuated by notes of garlic and ginger. We love peanuts for their inexpensive price and versatile flavor. They’re also a great source of protein–1 ounce has 7 grams. Source: Diabetic Living Magazine, Spring 2019

Slow-Cooker Vegan Chili

Grab your crock pot for this hearty and easy vegan chili, which is chock-full of great-tasting and good-for-you ingredients, including pinto and black beans, red pepper, tomatoes and butternut squash. Once a little chopping is done, all you have to do is dump the ingredients in the slow cooker, making this colorful veggie chili the perfect weeknight dinner. A garnish of fresh avocado and chopped cilantro is a nice touch. Source: EatingWell.com, April 2019

Vegan Mac & Cheese

Mac and cheese no longer has to be off the menu if you don’t do dairy. A blend of hearty cauliflower, butternut squash, cashews and nutritional yeast gives this vegan macaroni and cheese the gooey, cheesy texture and flavor of traditional mac, without a bit of dairy! Source: EatingWell.com, March 2019

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Egyptian Lentils, Rice & Pasta (Koshari)

This kitchen-sink of a vegetarian dish was most likely invented in Egypt in the mid-1800s when Cairo was a major multicultural trade port, which could explain the similarities to Italian spaghetti as well as the Indian rice-and-lentil comfort food khichdi. Three toppings–a spicy tomato sauce (shatta), crispy onions and a garlicky vinegar (dakka)–are added to the koshari before serving, but in Cairo most people like them in separate bowls so they can season their bites one at a time. (Recipe adapted from Zooba Restaurant.) Source: EatingWell Magazine, March 2020

Vegan Meatballs

For these hearty and healthy vegan meatballs, we’ve swapped out the traditional ground beef and pork for protein-packed chickpeas and quinoa–without skimping on any of those Italian flavors that you look for in a classic meatball. Mushrooms up the umami factor, and a simple tomato sauce completes the picture. Serve over your favorite pasta. Source: EatingWell.com, March 2019

Slow-Cooker Vegetable Stew

Potatoes and beans make this tomato-based crock-pot vegetable stew super-hearty. You could also add briefly sautéed chunks of zucchini or fresh corn kernels just before serving, or add another can of cannellini beans for more substance. A dollop of pesto on top is also super-delicious. Adding homemade garlic croutons is an easy way to elevate this healthy dinner. Source: EatingWell Magazine, September 2019

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