Did you know that (May 16th-22nd) was National Vegetarian Week? There are so many advantages to following a vegetarian diet. First and foremost, it’s better for the planet – and your pocket. After all, many UK species are under threat due to the climate crisis. So, eating more vegetarian food is one of easiest and most effective ways to reduce your own carbon emissions.
A vegetarian diet can also be extremely cost-effective. The Future of Food study, published in the Lancet in 2021, found that consumers could cut their food bills by a third, simply by adopting a plant-based diet. Lastly, a vegetarian diet can be better for your health and wellbeing. Keen to give it a go, but not sure where to start? Read on to discover a selection of national trainer Jo’s favourite vegetarian dinner ideas:
A traditional lasagne al forno is a perennial crowd-pleaser, perfect for feeding family and friends. This plant-based alternative from delicious. magazine, which features roasted vegetables and lentils, is one of my favourite vegetarian dinner ideas.
Even committed carnivores won’t miss the conventional meat sauce, I promise! Roasting the vegetables really concentrates the flavour, and using fresh lasagne sheets cuts down on the cooking time. An added bonus? You can freeze any extra portions for hassle-free mid-week dinners.
Our Sense Premium C2600 Electric Pyrolytic Oven would be perfect for this recipe. Its multi-stage cooking function is so versatile. I recommend setting the oven on the 180° fan setting for half an hour. Then finish off this dish under the grill for the final five minutes, to give your lasagne topping the perfect crispy finish.
This sweet and smoky chilli ‘non’ carne from Olive magazine never fails to please. It features vegan mince, two types of beans, and plenty of spice for a serious kick – although you can of course adjust the hotness level according to personal taste. I like to serve this with some fluffy rice, a topping of diced avocado, and lots of chopped coriander.
All of the cooking prep for this dish is done on the hob, and you won’t need any serious cooking skills. It really is a case of chop, stir and enjoy! I like to prepare this on our C858i Induction Hob. The bridgeable zones mean you can batch cook this in one big pan across a cooking area, which is twice the size. So, it really is the perfect appliance for large families, or people who like to plan ahead.
If you’re keen to experiment with vegetarian dinner ideas that are a little different, you’ll love these falafel burgers, from BBC Good Food. They’re healthy, low in calories, but super satisfying – perfect for when you want a fast, filling mid-week meal.
Chickpeas are such a versatile ingredient. A rich source of vitamins, minerals and fibre, they are high in protein too. No wonder they are such an excellent replacement for meat in many vegetarian and vegan dishes.
These falafel burgers take just minutes to fry on our C789G Gas-On-Glass Hob. This versatile appliance incorporates a powerful triple ring burner for fast, efficient cooking. In addition, our DirectHeat+ function sends a 45° inclined flame directly upwards towards the base of the pan. This means that more heat hits the base of the pan – and less escapes around the sides – bringing food to temperature quickly and reducing energy waste.
These days healthy eating doesn’t have to be synonymous with dietary deprivation. Some of my favourite vegetarian dinner ideas involve delicious desserts – this one happens to be vegan too.
This apple pie with shortcrust pastry, courtesy of The Veg Space, is such a tasty treat. You will need to make your own pastry, but please don’t panic if you’re a novice; it’s easier than you think, I promise! Try to be as ‘hands-off’ as possible, and always chill your dough in the fridge before rolling out. If you’re feeling adventurous, why not attempt a lattice topping? I like to serve my pie warm with vegan custard, but a good-quality vegan vanilla ice cream works equally well.
Our Classic C2220 Side Opening Electric Single Oven is ideal for this sort of baking. The side opening door offers easy access, which is also great for cleaning! Our Motionheat+ technology distributes hot air evenly around the oven cavity. There’s no need to preheat – saving you time and money – and there’s no flavour transfer, so it’s perfect for multi-level cooking, too.
Raspberry pavlova is such a classic summer dessert that I was determined to find a suitable version to include in my vegetarian dinner ideas round-up. Each element of this recipe, by The Kitchen with Great British Chefs, can be made in advance, so it’s ideal for entertaining. It takes just 10 minutes to assemble when your guests are ready for dessert.
Use the freshest raspberries you can find for the coulis, and keep the prettiest ones for decoration. I like to use a mix of raspberries and blueberries, for some added colour and texture. The conventional function of our Sense C2105SS Electric Single Oven would be perfect for the type of gentle cooking this sort of meringue requires. I love the soft-close mechanism, which allows the door to be shut quietly, as opposed to slammed. This simple feature prevents so many cooking issues, including sunken soufflés and cracked meringues.
Sometimes the best vegetarian dinner ideas don’t actually require any cooking! That’s certainly the case with this raw vegan chocolate cheesecake recipe from Sainsbury’s. It takes just 30 minutes to prepare (plus soaking and setting time). I love the combination of the crunchy nut base and creamy filling. Add some fresh summer berries for extra zing.
You won’t need an oven to make this delicious dessert, but you will need an efficient fridge freezer. I recommend our Sense Premium Ri7320 70/30 Frost Free In-Column model. This fridge freezer features our signature Caple Fresh technology and cool airflow system, which ensures even chilling and less food wastage. There’s a handy pull-out tray in the freezer section, for easy access and storage. And this appliance’s door-on-door fixed design makes installation fast and easy, too.
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