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Vegan alternatives to the classics

Being vegan, or simply wanting to go meat-, fish- and dairy-free more often, doesn’t mean you have to miss out on all those comforting favourites. From creamy mac ’n’ cheese to traditional cakes, we have delicious vegan recipes, all alternatives to classic dishes, so you can enjoy versatile and flavour-packed meals.

  1. Brilliant breakfasts

    You want to start your day the right way and while for some following a vegan diet that may include a platter of fruit, dairy-free yogurt or porridge, there are some occasions when only a naughty treat will do. This recipe for sticky cinnamon and pecan pastries will mean never missing your morning Danish, croissant or pain au chocolat again. For breakfast on the go, whip up a batch of banana and oat muffins to last you the whole week.

    Brilliant breakfasts
  2. "Not-so-dirty" dinners

    When it comes to dinner, you don't have to sacrifice big flavours or your favourite fast-food either. Sweet potatoes and seeds make an excellent patty mix for vegan burgers. Adding a hint of chilli into the burger provides a little depth of heat too which is nicely balanced with a creamy, cooling side of guacamole. While a big batch of this meat-free chilli which can be used to fill enchiladas, burritos or simply with a side of rice proves you don't need meat for flavour.

  3. One-pot winners

    Cooking vegan food doesn't need to be difficult. Curries are the perfect example of one-pot winter warmers that you can make with minimum fuss but maximum flavour. This vibrant cauliflower curry balances hot bird eye chillies with cool coconut for a delicious and simple midweek meal, while this mixed vegetable curry is packed with aubergine, courgette, spinach and peas in a spiced tomato sauce.

    One-pot winners
  4. Easy cheesy

    Comfort food and cheese go hand-in-hand but this gooey macaroni cheese uses soya milk and vegan spread to create a satisfying creamy sauce. Add butternut squash for depth and richness, and finish with crunchy croutons for a crispy baked topping. And our simple step-by-step recipe demonstrates just how easy it is to make a cashew nut cheese alternative to cream cheese in your own kitchen. 

    Easy cheesy
  5. Perfect pies

    Made with fluffy potatoes, sweet onion and a medley of herbs and spices, this hearty vegan potato pie is perfect winter comfort food for those following a vegan or vegetarian diet. If you’re feeling adventurous enough to experiment, why not try filling some vegan puff pastry with your own favourite ingredients.

    Perfect pies
  6. Pasta pronto

    A store cupboard staple, pasta is incredibly versatile and makes a great base for vegan versions of your favourites. Try a veggie lasagne that still has layers of creamy dairy-free sauce, or make a Bolognese with aubergine, mushrooms and lentils for a rich, filling bowl of spg bol. For a speedy gluten-free meal, swap out pasta for spiralised butternut squash spaghetti topped with a vibrant rocket, hazelnut and lemon pesto.

    Pasta pronto
  7. Winning weekends

    Lazy weekend brunches don’t have to be centred around eggs and meat-heavy fry-ups. These vegan burritos are hearty enough to satisfy even the hungriest of guests, filled with everything from scrambled tofu to roasted sweet potato and avocado. For those with more of a sweet tooth, try whipping up some fluffy coconut pancakes with caramelised bananas for a stack of stick-sweet deliciousness.

    Winning weekends
  8. Delectable desserts

    To end your meal on a high note, make sure dessert is delicious and fun. These tropical lollies – starring a medley of pineapple, lime, basil, ginger and kiwi – are the perfect summer cooler and definitely not your average lollies. Or how about vegan meringues, topped with passion fruit, kiwi, oranges and pineapple? The clever use of chickpea brine rather than eggs – yes, you read that right – makes these meringues an ideal free-from dessert.

    Delectable desserts
  9. Have your cake…

    Birthdays aren’t complete without cake, and being vegan doesn’t have to mean missing out. This showstopping birthday cake will brighten every party with its tropical flavours of mango, passion fruit and coconut. For individual treats, no one will be able to guess these decadent salted caramel cupcakes are completely egg- and dairy-free. Even the ultimate classic, Victoria sponge, can be given a vegan makeover – or if it’s got to be chocolate, the this rich vegan chocolate cake is sure to be a hit.

    Have your cake…
  10. Ready, steady, bake

    If baking’s your thing, then take it a step further with some pretty vegan scones to serve up for an afternoon tea – perfecting that crumbly texture without butter will make you feel like a star baker. For a savoury option, work on your kneading technique with a delicious bread dough for a homemade pizza, a proper treat with a cheese-free veggie topping including creamy sundried tomato houmous.

    Ready, steady, bake